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Discussion Starter #1
Just a heads up to any who may be purchasing Flashtec HID,(or other HID kits)? I sent an Email to Fashtek with a few questions during my install. One response I did not expect was a comment that on the first fire up of the bulb, keep the bulb on for a minimum of 10 minutes. I hadn't heard or read of that requirement anywhere. I surely did not do that, I haven't return Emailed yet so I do not know the reasoning behind the statement.

Has anyone else heard this, and have I already screwed up.
----I swear I try to do the right thing but constantly get thrown curve balls....
 

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alanforn said:
Just a heads up to any who may be purchasing Flashtec HID,(or other HID kits)? I sent an Email to Fashtek with a few questions during my install. One response I did not expect was a comment that on the first fire up of the bulb, keep the bulb on for a minimum of 10 minutes. I hadn't heard or read of that requirement anywhere. I surely did not do that, I haven't return Emailed yet so I do not know the reasoning behind the statement.

Has anyone else heard this, and have I already screwed up.
----I swear I try to do the right thing but constantly get thrown curve balls....
I have the HID Kit. Have been using it now for about 2 months. I did NOT burn it in for 10 minutes...
 

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That is just to make sure any contaminates are burned off so you don't get any smoke inside you light housing. Not to worry if it was clean and you don't have smoke.
 

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Just to add to that..

I bought a Chinese HID bulb from CQ for my high beam late last year and the printed instructions said in 'broken English' to run the bulb for 10 minutes before it is put in the housing.. I looked at the bulb and figured that it was to test the bulb. I did it anyhow. Wow, some decisions are clearly better than others. There was a small amount clear adhesive on the glass part of the bulb that I did not notice originally. It took almost 5 minutes to 'burn' off. So much smoke was produced, I was worried about my smoke detector going off.. :(

If that lamp was in my reflector assembly it probably would have been ruined.. So much for cheap 'products'.. BTW, my low beam from HID Online carried no warning other than, to be careful of the voltage produced, not to touch the bulb and if I did to wipe it with alcohol wipes. Of course it was three times the price.

I think that this type of thing is getting pretty commonplace now. I do suspect Chinese made anything as being a potential hazard..

It seems that Chinese cheap is really 'cheap'.. but that is probably another thread..
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Well, I just got back from a 45 minute ride and all seems to be well, no billowing smoke exhibited,(thank God). I had taken the precaution to wipe the bulb down well with alcohol prior to install. As everyone has stated, the night visibility is MUCH improved. I kept expecting to get "flashed" by oncoming traffic but never did, a much more pure white beam is broadcast. I've been putting up with the lame stock low beam for 2 years now, live and learn. Thanks guy's for the help!--Alan
 

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RaffyK said:
Make sure you are wearing eye protection. If that bulb explodes, it could have severe consequences.
Raffy speaks with great wisdom. I use HID and Xenon lamps of various sizes in theatrical lighting fixtures and have seen some pretty impressive explosions which can cause severe damage to the fixture and any one near by if the fixture is operating with the safety shields removed. We use full mask style face shields, welding gloves, and heavy leather safety vests or jackets when working with the larger ones. It's wise with the smaller ones as well. Hot pieces of flying glass fragments isn't something you want to experience.
 

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Chinese products

Are you implying that the Chinese make inferior products? ....... :histerica
 

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A few years ago I spent a week in China on business. It was really eye opening, considering the small view of a big city and a 100 mile radius that I had. I know why made in China is cheap. :( I listen to stories from my son (chemist) when he deals with Chinese manufacturing products with his formulas. This is not unique to China it is all the surrounding countries. However China is by far the worst according to him. My son's best friend runs a high end importing business and manufactures clothes. He is constantly traveling to China just to keep his quality up to his sell points.

I think I can understand incompetence, getting what your paying for and such. What bothers me is the corruption with regard to safety. I think there is corruption everywhere and it has to be dealt with. Unfortunately when you buy something with a brand name you have no idea how much content of that is involved with 'safety' corruption that really involves mere cents on the cost of that product.

Executing a few of the people at the very top helps.. :stir:

I think it would generally help around the world. At least I might be more inclined to be nieve..
 

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Discussion Starter #10
It amazes me that many are quick to attack a $75.00 Chinese H.I.D. bulb, but sharply defends a $18,000+ German motorcycle's problems,(rear drives, slave cylinders,seals,etc).
 

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jackd said:
I don't see your point :confused:
I started this thread to try and inform a potential FashTek HID buyer,(it's an LT group buy deal), of an omission in the instructions. I freaked out when I got the Email from them AFTER the install so I felt compelled to alert others who may purchase themselves.
So the Email evolves into how Chinese goods are cheap. I believe the majority of us know this, God knows it's been dominating the news with tainted catfish and lead painted Thomas the Train toys. I also agree that something should be done to create safety standards that are stringently enforced.
Having said this, I've knowingly and surely unknowingly purchased many Chinese products. Harbor Freight has allowed me to acquire many things I would otherwise have to do without, I probably would have passed on an HID kit if I had to pay $200.
Oh yeah, back to my point. I often get the cold shoulder when I communicate my views concerning some of the more chronic problems with the LT. I don't feel as though I'm a whiner, or expect something I shouldn't out of machine. When I purchase a Chinese or similar product my expectations are low, on the other hand when many $$$'s are spent on a quality item,(such as the LT), my expectations are understandably much higher.
The cheap Chinese wrench I've used for 2 years broke the other night, I threw it away without thinking twice. My LT breaks down,(with one of "normal and expected" repairs), and I wonder if I'm going to fix the bike or pay the mortgage.
I love this site, respect the members and do like the LT. I also understand that bikes are machines and they break. I just wish BMW would admit they have some design flaws and more importantly correct them.
 

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alanforn said:
I just wish BMW would admit they have some design flaws and more importantly correct them.
That is because BMW motorcycles are made in China!!! :rolleyes: :histerica
 

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alanforn said:
It amazes me that many are quick to attack a $75.00 Chinese H.I.D. bulb, but sharply defends a $18,000+ German motorcycle's problems,(rear drives, slave cylinders,seals,etc).
Comparing a complex machine consisting of thousands of different parts from scores of different vendors to a light bulb....


That is a very interesting comparison.
 

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Randy said:
Comparing a complex machine consisting of thousands of different parts from scores of different vendors to a light bulb....


That is a very interesting comparison.
Interesting, but quite valid. Not a long time ago, I have been pondering this myself, looking at busted final drive, figuring how to extricate myself from a location 500 miles from home.

Point is, cheap - or inexpensive - items that fail do not raise my ire as much as something that seems to be inferior in quality while being very expensive. Let's be honest, we all have bought into the presumed superiority of BMW bikes - but maybe it is just a marketing accomplishment?

A top of the line machine, pricy, should be able to take you anywhere with no second thought. A few weeks ago I drove my car to Ottawa and Montreal for a weekend and did not think of it as a great mechanical accomplishment. Therefore, I did not appreciate the fact that a couple of months ago, preparing for another long-distance run on the 'LT, I had to very seriously consider the possibility of drivetrain breakdown and thus did spend time updating towing info, printing out locations of dealerships, making sure credit cards are in order, etc.

Regardless of whether there are few or many parts, if the item in question is an expensive one compared to its equivalents on the market, the expectations should be high - but we, myself included, are somehow willing to cut BMW a lot of slack.

Alanforn's point is well taken.
 

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alanforn said:
I started this thread to try and inform a potential FashTek HID buyer,(it's an LT group buy deal), of an omission in the instructions. I freaked out when I got the Email from them AFTER the install so I felt compelled to alert others who may purchase themselves.
So the Email evolves into how Chinese goods are cheap. I believe the majority of us know this, God knows it's been dominating the news with tainted catfish and lead painted Thomas the Train toys. I also agree that something should be done to create safety standards that are stringently enforced.
Having said this, I've knowingly and surely unknowingly purchased many Chinese products. Harbor Freight has allowed me to acquire many things I would otherwise have to do without, I probably would have passed on an HID kit if I had to pay $200.
A good point. I usually try not to buy products by price, but by value. That is how I bought my LT. I also did not buy a high beam HID until I could get one for $110. I also felt that $300+ that I spent for my low beam was well worth the money I paid. In fact I paid a premium for the German engineered lamp so I would get what I paid for. Similiar to your approach to buying into the LT 'quality myth'. I would not get the value out of a $300 high HID. I haven't got value yet out of the $110 yet. I also figured it it wasn't up to snuff it was just the high beam. I wasn't using it anyway. My CQ high HID was installed at the end of last year and I generally do more after dark riding in the fall. I'm actually toying with the idea of converting two MicroDE fog lamps I have to HIDs.. for $150 that would potentilly give me good 'critter' side lights later in evening and after midnight runs home after work.

alanforn said:
Oh yeah, back to my point. I often get the cold shoulder when I communicate my views concerning some of the more chronic problems with the LT. I don't feel as though I'm a whiner, or expect something I shouldn't out of machine.
Your point on reliability is not lost on me. I had those same feelings when I made my first 5,000 mile trip with my 'new to me' LT. I made sure that my debit card had enough reserves to cover a rear end and or a multistate tow. I fretted and then went ahead. BTW, I had a tranny rear seal start to leak 30 days before I left on that first trip.. Fixed that two years later when I had the swingarm off doing the slave replacement at 55K like it was recommended by the 'wrenches' on this site. Saved me a $1500 repair. Mine was already leaking. I was lucky and got away cheap... not Chinese cheap .. BMW cheap.. a $100. :)

alanforn said:
When I purchase a Chinese or similar product my expectations are low, on the other hand when many $$$'s are spent on a quality item,(such as the LT), my expectations are understandably much higher.
The cheap Chinese wrench I've used for 2 years broke the other night, I threw it away without thinking twice. My LT breaks down,(with one of "normal and expected" repairs), and I wonder if I'm going to fix the bike or pay the mortgage.
Again your point is heard on my screen. I try to do my maintenace and see where it takes me. If I wasn't a regular here I probably would not know about the 'common' problems. Ignorance is bliss sometimes.


alanforn said:
I love this site, respect the members and do like the LT. I also understand that bikes are machines and they break. I just wish BMW would admit they have some design flaws and more importantly correct them.
I also wish BMW would stand up and acknowledge the problem but I'm not holding my breath. We look at the LT completely different that the manufacturer. M/Cs for most of us are a passion but for BMW Motorad it is their livelihood. Manufacture and warranty cost are bottom line numbers and business is all about numbers. I believe that BMW has acknowledged this problem through negotiated settlements.. (i.e. out of warranty repairs). Do I expect that they will tell us that there is an engineering anomaly that they need to correct in every LT that was made to a manufacture date? Simply No.. If the failure rate was double digits or even 20% they might have to step up to the plate then. Do I believe my local dealer will go to bat for me if my rear end goes this season.. NO.. I am not a regular in his shop and I don't bring donuts.. Will I try? Probably.

IMHO, I think BMW has fixed the problem. The newer LTs do not show the problem. Do other models have a problem? I don't know. You would think that if they fixed the LT rear problem they would have fixed it in the GT. I haven't followed that problem, because frankly, I don't care. I don't have a GT and I don't want one. GT people will have to worry on their own.. Some went to the GT because of the worry of the LT rear.. That must be a real bummer..

My worry beads are shiny with my LT concerns... no room for GT worries ... :histerica

Seriously, back on point, I'm concerned with the rear end bearing. Not enough to sell because I like the bike. One advantage I have is I did not buy mine new so I have a little more room to play. I also don't have a mortgage.. so if I have to make a repair I will grumble at the cost.. It will probably be more than the 'cost' of my first new car. Talk about sticker shock. But that is probably another thread.

I change the oil and save it in a glass jar and watch the sediment for chips. If I find them I'll do something as I don't want to have a breakdown away from the Northeast. What I need to do.. I'll have to decide at the time. Maybe it will be time to trade it in.. I completely understand the statement that the only thing 'cheap' about a BMW LT is the owner.

History tells me that a few guys found the problem during an oil change but most didn't. Hopefully, I'm a 96% but ya' never know. I don't want to worry about something I can't fix. I have enough problems with the ones I can fix.. Proactive replacement is no guarantee that I won't have the problem.

Hope you resolve your 'payed for quality and didn't get it' conflict. Some may take it as complaining or whining. I don't, you just typed out my concerns from a few years ago. 'New to me' owners need to know that older LTs are exposed. Repairs are spotty and not recommended.. and only replacements seem to work out over the long run.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for hearing me out and the insightful responses Jack. I'll feel better as soon as I receive my new Wilburs shocks. (I could only afford the cheap bulb after that order!)
 

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As a US manufacturer I face the "china" competition all the time. As most know much actually way to much is bought here that was made there. That is because people want low prices. Quality usually is lower on the list of priorities. Perhaps not with the folks on this web site but many. Walmart is a classic example of gross exploitation of chinese made goods.
If you buy made in china well then i hope you get what you paid for. I for one make it my last option for purchase.

Perhaps when we start outsourcing middle management jobs and accounting and even layers services to china then it may not seem as such a good idea to out source.

BOYCOTT CHINA MADE GOODS.
 
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