In Massachussetts I’ve been hassled a couple times for not running turn signals, so trying to figure out how to run them without standing out too much seems to be a common theme with me. Here’s a simple way to tuck them in cleanly and easily, even if they still aren’t totally legal. I illustrated this how-to using a 39mm aluminum lower tree, but these tips can be reworked for a variety of different setups.
• Angle grinder with cutoff discs and a flap wheel
• Drill with a sharp step bit
• 1/4-20 tap and associated drill bits, Allen bolts and washers
• Your favorite measuring device
• 2 each amber push-in style LED clusters
• a long-enough chunk of 2” x 2” x 1/8” thick aluminum angle
And away we go…
Measure the space between your fork legs above the lower tree and cut a piece of aluminum angle to fit. Although many of the steps for this how-to can be done with the forks on the bike, it will be easier if you disassemble the fork completely from the frame.
Draw, cut, and shape the top curve of the aluminum to fit with your headlight choice.
Remove unnecessary material on the base of your L-bracket so the piece will clear the steer tube.
Use a cutoff wheel to scribe a crescent shape into the L-bracket's headlight relief. This is easier to do with several shallow passes rather than one deep one.
Clean up your cuts with a flap disk, ScotchBrite wheel, or other abrasive of your choice.
Here's a peek at the LED's I use. Simple snap-in models with a nylon bezel.
After the alloy L-bracket is fitting the way you want it to, measure and locate the spots for your LED clusters. Blue layout fluid works well to help keep everything nice and symmetrical during your design process, but a Sharpie will also do if your design's not too complicated.
Measure for center on your L-bracket and scribe your drill point.
Choose a drill bit or step drill that leaves a hole slightly smaller than the shaft on the bezel of your LED.
Double-check your measurements before hitting the drill press.
Drill the appropriate sized holes, clean up the edges, and pop the LED clusters in.
I like to add some speed holes to give my bracket more style.
Set the whole thing up on your lower tree to help determine the best spot to drill and tap to bolt the two together. If you can drill them wide enough, you can make your way around the neck stem when you tap the holes. If you have access to a press, taking the stem out will help your frustration level.
After the hole are tapped, put your front end back together, get it on your bike and wire things up. Done.
See more of Jay's work here.