Hella Lights - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 10 Old Sep 13th, 2009, 8:11 pm Thread Starter
fas
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Hella Lights

I am helping Hella as a client now. They have superb lighting technology and OEM domination in Europe. I hope to have a few of the members here evaluate their bulbs and lights. Let me know if you are interested. Bulbs in Le Mans yellow or blue or white. They also have LED with ballast kits. They have not yet attacked the MOTO market and I am now helping them do this work. They have not yet set pricing and we are looking for partners to sell to the MOTO market.

Rob Nelson

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2006 K1200GT [now lives in Wisconsin]
Grey Goose
2002 K1200LTC [now lives in Georgia]
Toscana Temptress

More than 132,000 (recently corrected higher) motorcycle riders have died in traffic crashes since the enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1966 and The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Be careful out there.
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post #2 of 10 Old Sep 13th, 2009, 9:56 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

Hey FAS:

I have been contemplating adding extra lighting to my 2008 K1200GT. I ride after dark about 2 to 4 times per week depending on the time of year. Day light savings time determines if it is 2 or 4 times per week. It is usually a combination of freeway, urban roads and city roads. I average about 18 to 20,000 miles a year on the bike. Being in California I ride pretty much year round. I would be interested in evaluating the Hella Lights. I would like to talk with you and get some suggestions as to which lights or combination of lights would be best. Either way it sounds interesting. Let me know if I can be of an service.
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post #3 of 10 Old Dec 31st, 2009, 6:11 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

Hi FAS, still working the lighting gig? Get them to develop a few sets and we could do a side-by-side or head-to-head comparison on our bikes. Back in the Early-mid eighties I worked at a speed shop in Lakewood. We used to sell Hella and CeBe if I remember correctly. I mounted a 7" cebe headlight and 2 hella driving lights on brackets of my own fabrication onto my old GPz. Holy crap was that thing bright for its time!

I'd rather have a bottle in front of me, than a frontal lobobomy!
87 K100RS Tooling round town edition
01 K1200LT Luxo-Barge
83 Yamaha XJ Turbo Forced Air Futility
83 GPz 1100 Thrashed, Trashed & Crashed
74 Honda 500-4 Mad Max reincarnate
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post #4 of 10 Old Dec 31st, 2009, 8:28 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

Be curious to learn more but quality with Hella reflectors is a major problem to the extent that I no longer buy Hella lights. I have had many models on cars and trucks and every lamp (6 or 8 pair) had their reflectors fog up in humid climate. Cheap poor quality aluminized coating, I suspect. Some durability testing would be good for them to think about. Strange they can't get a durable coating on a metal surface.

I've also had too many of their lenses crack from road spray cooling in cold conditions (4 or 5 IIRC). Housings were using stock rated bulbs at the time so again, not acceptable quality of design. This has happened even with lamps mounted above headlight height. They do seem impact resistat, however.

I have had no problems with other Hella parts like relays, switches, ballasts and supplied bulbs but note that like a lot of traditional German gear, weather proofing gets little to no attention in most of their aftermarket stuff. That's pretty inexcusable for anything and unacceptable for a bike. And very odd for stuff coming fom a place that can be cold and damp a lot of the time.

Some German designs still use leaf springs in bulb holders that fail over time for tension loss due to vibration and age- that design is just plain stupid unless springs are made quite stiff but it sure is cheap to make. Not sure how much of this applies to Hella but they supply a lot of stuff in Germany. This is so common it is the first thing I suspect when a light goes out on a German vehicle- its as likely to be the spring as the bulb.

Am old enough to remember the 8" Cibie Oscars that were racing standards up to the 70s. Had a pair on my Z car's badge bar to keep deer from occupying my seat. (Often saw a couple hundred of the 4 legged rats in a 25 mile commute I made at night - really really scary because they fed along the road edge for a couple months in the spring - partly for new buds and partly for the road salt, I think. ) Good stuff-never had an issue with them. Bright for any period, at least until HIDs showed up. (H-1 bulbs may be a more vibration sensitive than an H-3 but watt for watt they work better) Painted the shells to match the car, too.

My RT has Trail Tech HIDs (30W, spot beam) with which I have had many bulb (4) and ballast (2) issues that the maker has fully covered under warranty while they fix their problems (bad reflector coatings and ballasts). I think they are now fully resolved but won't know until I get a few more months on them. There appear to be no other reasonably priced equivalents at present. I also run 65 W IPF H-7 bulbs in the headlamp, the BMW LED tailight accessory and Hyperlites. Don't like the 6000K and up bulbs for regular lamps- too much bounceback in fog which is predictable whereI live at some times of the year.

Accessory HIDs would be my primary interest for bikes - halogens are common, obsolete for many uses, and I see little need for additional offerings from Hella given the plethora of passable reasonably priced lamps from Asian brands, though custom installation kits that make fitting easy might be one possible product line. PIAA is pushing their luck a lot at their current price poInts for halogens vs competition so I expect them to loose share or price over time. I used their 1100s and noted that lenses pitted to worthlessness fairly quickly on a sportscar- changed to a Catz set which was a bit better, removing them for HIDs eventually. HID replacements for stock headlamps that include legal optics would also interest me- I won't do the illegal HID lamp changes some make.

LED running lights to fit the bike would also be of interest - not much sidelighting on an RT

In short, I think Hella needs innovation and quality at competitive prices at least as much as marketing - which has often been marginal in the US but that's another story. I know some of these ideas tread on what is DOT legal so some "marketing risk" and disclaimers need to be part of their thinking if they want to sell much to bikers. Most of their potential customers are riding sportbikes or Harleys/cruisers even though BMW owners certainly are into farkles.
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post #5 of 10 Old Dec 31st, 2009, 11:47 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

Rob,

Id be happy to help out.....and theres no shipping to sweat! Let me know.


Dave

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12 GTL
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post #6 of 10 Old Jan 1st, 2010, 12:32 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

I have been looking at the Hella lights because I can get a Micor DE for driving lights and matching fog lights.

Steve
DFW
'02' F650GS Dakar
'06' K1200GT Blue

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post #7 of 10 Old Jan 1st, 2010, 12:54 pm
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Re: Hella Lights

Hi FAS,

It's funny that you should mention Hella as I had been looking for user feedback on Micro DE Xenons pretty much everywhere, to no avail (both on US and European websites).

Anyhoo, I finally bought a pair of Micro DE Xenons last week and I'll deliver them to my dealer on monday so he can install them on a brand new R1200RT (2009) I'll be getting on january 15.

The idea is to install them under the radiator and wire them so that they turn on and off with the bike's high beam. Any thoughts on this setup and mounting location?

I also ordered a set of LED Clearwater Glendas for daytime driving, to be installed on the front brake mounts.

I'll let you guys know how all this additional lighting delivers on the road as soon as I get the bike.

Cheers,


Olivier
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post #8 of 10 Old Jan 4th, 2010, 6:46 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Hella Lights

Met the Hella management team in GA, their USA HQ, just prior to Santa time. We plan to build a B-C site for them. I really appreciate the insights here.

They have bulbs you can put in your factory lights to get much better performance. We are running a 600 store market test in Advance Auto now for these MOTO bulbs. Bulbs were just shipped to Advance Auto.

Let me know if you need any info. They invented the Xenon light, BTW.

Feel free to call my cell if you want to chat about this. 216.650.0037

Rob Nelson

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2006 K1200GT [now lives in Wisconsin]
Grey Goose
2002 K1200LTC [now lives in Georgia]
Toscana Temptress

More than 132,000 (recently corrected higher) motorcycle riders have died in traffic crashes since the enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1966 and The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Be careful out there.
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post #9 of 10 Old Jan 5th, 2010, 2:06 am
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Re: Hella Lights

Quote:
Originally Posted by fas
Met the Hella management team in GA, their USA HQ, just prior to Santa time. We plan to build a B-C site for them. I really appreciate the insights here.

They have bulbs you can put in your factory lights to get much better performance. We are running a 600 store market test in Advance Auto now for these MOTO bulbs. Bulbs were just shipped to Advance Auto.

Let me know if you need any info. They invented the Xenon light, BTW.

Feel free to call my cell if you want to chat about this. 216.650.0037
Fas,

I'd be interested in the replacement bulbs you speak of. Can we get these in Europe (you know, with Hella being a German company and all...)?

Cheers,


dfmz
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post #10 of 10 Old Jan 19th, 2010, 9:47 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Hella Lights

Let me know what app you need and they will arrive.

Rob Nelson

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2006 K1200GT [now lives in Wisconsin]
Grey Goose
2002 K1200LTC [now lives in Georgia]
Toscana Temptress

More than 132,000 (recently corrected higher) motorcycle riders have died in traffic crashes since the enactment of the Highway Safety Act of 1966 and The National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966. Be careful out there.
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