Sunday, September 19, 2010
Tail light disintegration
I'm sure smart buyers are well aware of the lesson I just learned for the millionth time. I'm willing to wager these smart buyers actually apply what they've learned when buying a used motorcycle and aim to bag a bone-stock machine. Why? A previous post comes to mind. Unfortunately, I'm still learning to learn from my mistakes, and my beloved ZX had it's share of customizations performed by the previous owner.
These customizations included an integrated tail light/turn signal. I guess it cleans up the bike and makes for a sleeker tail section. But it also decreases visibility (since the LED cluster in the aftermarket part is sub-par when compared with the LEDs from the factory unit) and it makes it harder to telegraph your intentions to the driver behind you. Right and left turn signals encased within a single, 5-inch light fixture - in the middle of the vehicle. This makes me less than confident that my turn signal is getting the point across to the half driving, half teleconferencing motorist to my aft.
Laziness kept me driving with this language barrier until it actually began to fail. First a handful of the brake-purposed LEDs fell silent, then a handful of the left turn signal-purposed LEDs. This pathetic excuse for a light had to be replaced.
So replace I did. Some soldering and some resurrection of factory parts (which the previous owner was kind enough to include) gave me clear-as-can-be tail lights and rear turn signals. Communication restored!
However, now there's a gaping void within the stock rear turn signals and the body work they come attached to. The previous owner fitted a Cobra aftermarket exhaust. The rear of the motorcycle looks pretty hideous right now, but I think I can live with it for a while knowing I'll be seen. Now to find a stock exhaust...