Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Headlight Adjustment Revisited

The question of “how to check the headlight adjustment” was asked. So I guess some folks don’t have an owner’s manual or service manual. Or, might have a custom headlight, or whatever. You should still check with your local dealer for exact measurements if you don’t have a manual. This procedure should give you a very good baseline adjustment for just about any bike with a single headlight.

First, the basics: All adjustments are done on level ground. Use the “high beam” only while making adjustments. Bike should have the normal load that it carries, and standing straight up. The adjustment is very simple, so I’ll try not to over complicate it.

As for the adjusters on your bike, you will have to look at it to determine how to move them. There are several different types. Most are relativity simple and straight foreword. Again, check with your dealer or manual if your not sure.

The first measurement you need is the distance from the headlight to the taillight. Take that and multiply by.75, add 250, divide by E=MC2, subtract ½ and tighten the bolts. Did it work? If not, lets try the next method.



The garage door and driveway work good for this. Also masking tape. Measure 25 feet from the garage door. Mark the driveway at that spot. Measure the distance from the ground to the center of your headlight. Mark the door at that height, in a straight line from the mark on the driveway. Place the front axel over the mark on the driveway. Sit on the bike, stand it straight up and straight ahead, turn on the high beam. The mark on the door should be in the center of the main part of the beam. Adjust as necessary.

9 comments:

B.B. said...

Hey, thanks for the good info! And I like the pictures, some of us need them. :)

Ann said...

I liked the first method better! Please understand, it's 6:00 a.m. and I was trying to read and understand that garbage! When I finally figured out it was a joke, I was LMFAO!! Thanks for making me smile this early in the morning. What a great way to start the day! :)

Mr. Motorcycle said...

Being ex-bodyman and painter, I was fortunate enough to know this already. It is however, great advise, and thanks for sharing. The only problem I have with it is that My driveway is on a hill, and doesn't level out till I get practically inside the garage. I need to borrow your flat driveway, and you live in California, and I live in Minnesota. That is a very long ride for a headlight adjustment.)

Dean "D-Day" said...

But so worth the trip Mr M.

Thanx for the headlight info.

FLHX_Dave said...

I was mind screaming at you with the formula also, doing the whole "wtf" thing. Then I realized what was going on. lol.

Damn, I missed the whole hi-beam only part of my manual...now I have to go re-adjust headlight again...only this time in the cold air...just to make sure that high beam is on.

Willy D said...

B.B.: Now you need to find someone to check it for you. I wonder who?


Ann: Joke? What joke? Ask your mechanic. He’ll translate it for you;]


Mr. M: What’s a couple thousand miles. Bring it out. The driveway is all yours;)


“D-Day”: Good point; it’s sooooo worth it.


Dave: Reading, and “following” instructions sure can be a pain in the ass at times.

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