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Turn-signal GS500F mirrors (An awesome DIY by Gregory Li)




I've wanted turn signal mirrors like the ones now standard on Gixxers for a while now. Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of options for buying mirrors like that. The Gixxer ones use a different mount, and would be at the wrong angle, and the only aftermarket ones I could find didn't look like they would be very functional as mirrors.

I decided that I would make my own by getting another pair of mirrors and chop them up to fit some LED's (I didn't want to accidentally mess up the factory mirrors and not have any mirrors). I had also learned somewhere that GS500F mirrors not only fit an SV650S, but also had longer stalks, giving them a superior view. So, it was a no-brainer: buy a pair of GS500F mirrors, and cut them up to put some turn signals in them. Off to eBay I went...

Preparing the mirrors and LEDs



Here are the main parts laid out. I used some aluminum tape to mask off the hole I was going to cut for the LED marker lights I bought. I bought the lights at Waytek Wire (part #47951). For the first mirror I used a Dremel with a cutting wheel to carefully make the hole. I later found out that using a hot knife is way easier and cleaner.
before
after

The first thing I found after cutting the whole was a foam block inside the mirror. I don't think the normal SV650S mirrors have these- I noticed a lead weight embedded in it, so I think maybe it's necessary to reduce vibrations caused by the longer stalks. Anyway, this is also solved easily using a hot knife. My first attempt, using an X-acto was not so clean, but once I shoved the hot knife in there it came out real quick and easy. You can see in the "after" pic that I hollowed out enough room to slide in the LED lights.

I also discovered that there was not enough room to fit in the light "as-is", so I cut off all the flanging on the light. The bottom flange is completely removed, as well as a little bit of material on the top (to the sides of the main light "bubble"). The plastic that this light is made out of is a lot harder than the mirror body, so the hot knife did not work too well. After cutting off the flanging and cleaning the lights, I also glued on some nuts to the bottom of the lights, and soldered on wires.

Fitting the LEDs into the mirror bodies







This was actually the easiest part. First, I ran the wire through the mirror and out the drain hole on the bottom. Next, I pushed the LED assembly into the hole until the whole thing was in. I then pulled it towards the other side until the bubble popped into the hole I made. Finally, I screwed them in (notice the nuts glued onto the bottom of the LED in the first pic).

I used some zip-ties to route the wire along the stalk and try to make everything look as neat as possible. I dabbed some black paint onto the screw heads to they didn't stick out so much. Finally, I spliced in some connectors to the existing turn signals for my new ones. You'll see later that the existing turn signals are far brighter than the LEDs, so even though it would look cleaner to just have the LEDs, it's much safer to have both. The turn signal on the right is the one I did first. It's a really messy job compared to my second attempt. One other thing I had to do was to widen the hole in the piece of plastic used to hold on the turn signal so that the connector, with additional, spliced-on wire would fit through. If this doesn't make sense, don't worry, it'll become clear when you take off the turn signal from the bike.

The Finished Product


A finished mirror assembly
Mounted on the bike

Although the LED is definitely visible, it's not nearly as bright as the stock turn signal. That's fine though- it should still help with visibility in general since it's mounted closer to the eye-level of another driver.
Conclusions

So, was it worth it? I think the main thing I'd want to do differently is to get brighter lights. The lights I have really only have two very bright LEDs in the center- if I were to do it all again I might try to scavenge the lights used in some other turn-signal mirrors that have a wider swath of light. Also, where the lights are mounted, they're actually pointing down a little bit once the mirrors are back on the bike. I don't think there's a good place to mount them so they'd be level, so again, I find myself wanting brighter and wider-angle lights.

The GS500F mirrors, on the other hand, are totally worth it. I used to have to contort my body like someone just punched me in the ribs in order to see behind me. Now, I just tuck in my elbow a little bit and I can see fine. It's a great feeling to be sitting at a stop light and be able to look behind and tell whether the driver coming up behind me is at least looking at the road ahead of him, or if he's turned around trying to control his kids.

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