switch for headlight/taillight and brights - The Jockey Journal Board

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Old 03-02-2013, 06:50 PM   #1
hardtop
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Default switch for headlight/taillight and brights

guys, im looking for a switch for my lights on my 73 shovel build. Id like a 3 position toggle switch that uses a single source (ideally) that energizes a single circuit in the first position and then energizes both the first and a second circuit in the second position. (two (2) sources would be okay because i could make a jumper).

to try to explain it another way.

switch position 1: off
switch position 2: load A
switch position 3: load A+B

does anyone know if such a beast exists in a compact toggle for a motorbike?

thanks a lot for you help.
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Old 03-02-2013, 06:59 PM   #2
Dr. Benway
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

I think I looked for something similar way back, but could only find

A
Off
A+B

...with off in the middle. It worked fine, given that you just skip over the middle position quickly.
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Old 03-02-2013, 07:36 PM   #3
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Why do you need a+b on one position? Will this be for both headlight,hi and
low and also tail light? I run tail light constant and one wire to the headlight with an "on.off.on switch mounted in the bucket.
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Old 03-02-2013, 07:45 PM   #4
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Quote:
Originally Posted by hatch View Post
Why do you need a+b on one position? Will this be for both headlight,hi and
low and also tail light? I run tail light constant and one wire to the headlight with an "on.off.on switch mounted in the bucket.
yep, and i dont want to drill the headlight bucket on this build... mostly cause im looking for an alternate headlight in the future. i might run the taillight constant as you have, but i may have it on the switch. ive made a taillight out of a microphone and it built around a very specific bulb, so i may choose to extend the life of the bulb by keeping it off when possible. im sure thats illegal but...
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Old 03-02-2013, 07:46 PM   #5
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

by the way, these dudes have what i need. hoping to find something equivalent locally but... we'll see.
http://www.k-four.net/K4%20Catalog.pdf
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:54 PM   #6
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Find a good hardware store. There one here that sell all kinds of toggle switches for old appliances, I got exactly what your describing for about 7 bucks. Still working good after a year.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:11 AM   #7
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

[QUOTE=hardtop;892258]
switch position 1: off
switch position 2: load A
switch position 3: load A+B
QUOTE]

What you've just described is a three position switch, available anywhere really. Get a simple on/off/on switch, wire 'load A' to the first 'on' and then loads B-Z to the second. Don't want to drill the headlight? Run the leads from point elsewhere to the headlight.

I guess I don't see why it's imperative to have the 'off' be on the end rather than the middle when you can just switch over it in as long as it takes you to do so. Maybe you're being overly complex here when the solution is available already and for less than $7.
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Old 03-03-2013, 01:38 PM   #8
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

That is called a double pole-double throw switch. It has six terminals, two hot in the center and options on each side. Wire it so both center are hot (hot lead a short jumper) and then wire the ends appropriately to make it all work. Piece of cake and been used for the last half century...
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:28 PM   #9
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

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Originally Posted by Rubone View Post
That is called a double pole-double throw switch. It has six terminals, two hot in the center and options on each side. Wire it so both center are hot (hot lead a short jumper) and then wire the ends appropriately to make it all work. Piece of cake and been used for the last half century...
ding ding.
google "dpdt" switch
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:22 PM   #10
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Quote:
Originally Posted by hardtop View Post
yep, and i dont want to drill the headlight bucket on this build... mostly cause im looking for an alternate headlight in the future. i might run the taillight constant as you have, but i may have it on the switch. ive made a taillight out of a microphone and it built around a very specific bulb, so i may choose to extend the life of the bulb by keeping it off when possible. im sure thats illegal but...
Not sure if you are using a standard filament bulb, but on a vibrating machine such as a motorcycle, bulb life will be longer with the bulb lit. A warm filament is more "fluid" than a cold one which is brittle. Vibration will tend to work harden and break the filament.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:25 AM   #11
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Here's how to power the tail light from a SPDT headlight switch. The diodes prevent both the hi and lo being always on.

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Old 03-04-2013, 03:04 PM   #12
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

I just wire my headlight for high all the time so it is on or off, no low. The fools in the oncoming lane need to see me.

I also don't have any state inspections to pass, for my safety.
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:32 PM   #13
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

i thought that when the second position was energized the first position shut off? for some reason i thought the high beam was in addition to the low beam, not instead of. are you guys saying the low beam filament shuts off when the high beam filament is energized? the low and high filaments are never energized at the same time? am i understanding that right?
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Old 03-04-2013, 09:39 PM   #14
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Default Re: switch for headlight/taillight and brights

Quote:
the low and high filaments are never energized at the same time? am i understanding that right?
That is correct.
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