Horn addition

Bike aesthetic/mechanical/electrical modifications and general wrenching advice.
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Prof J
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Horn addition

Post by Prof J » Mon Jul 08, 2019 8:59 pm


I pretty much like loud horns on my bikes. It’s usually the second thing, after lowering a bike, if I need that. I looked around for a set, there are a few good dual sets out, and eventually came across Bosch H3F, which were loud, and had a reasonable dual tone. So I ordered them up. They were about $46. It took about 18 days for the package to arrive from over-seas.

You can see that the new horns have a larger diameter, and have a larger width, as well.






Installing was relatively straight forward:

I removed the stock horn and coerced one of the new H3F’s onto the bracket and did a full left-right turn check. Regardless of the rotation position of the horn, the horn came into contact with the front, lower inner fairing. The OEM bracket would not work. There was about 1 inch clearance above the horn from contacting any head height objects.

I removed the bracket and made a new one, using the OEM bracket as a template, except made the horn tab about ½” taller, and placed the same bends as the OEM had, and refit the horn/bracket and a full left-right swing cleared what it needed.

I could not find the amperage spec on the horn set, so I needed to check out the OEM system horn 'capacity' wiring/amperage.

I used a split wire connector I had laying around for both the OEM positive and OEM negative connectors, which would allow me to supply power to both new horns. The horns were connected up and the power was ample for each working at the same time. No relay setup needed. Longer horn blasting, annoying the neighbors, worked well, and the power wires did not heat up.



I painted the new bracket and then installed the first horn/bracket.



I then began to search out a secondary location for the additional horn, a location without moving OEM cable/brackets or other OEM gadgets. I found the only placement suitable to me, was on the left side, up against the gas tank, inside the ‘outer’ bike framing. That placement would only need a few zip ties.

I put two holes in the horns lower lip and molding:



Here you can see the molding holes, with zip ties poking through.



After placing a few holes in the front lip of the horn, several matching holes in the plastic upper molding, which is on the top of the radiator, and trimming off the bolt stub on the horn, I could place the horn, lock down its front to the molding, and use another zip tie to attach the body of the horn against the left side, inner bike frame – which had OEM holes already existing. A full left-right swing check, and the second horn cleared. Fitting done.



Here is a sound sample of the OEM horn, one H3F as a single horn, and the H3F set.

Last edited by Prof J on Tue Jul 09, 2019 4:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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JonTheChron
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Re: Horn addition

Post by JonTheChron » Mon Jul 08, 2019 10:31 pm


This isn't a plug a play setup, you MUST add a 20A relay into the current horn circuit and the horn should be hooked up directly to the battery using appropriate wiring (12AWG) and be fused with the appropriate 20A fuse.
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Prof J
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Re: Horn addition

Post by Prof J » Mon Jul 08, 2019 11:29 pm


JonTheChron wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2019 10:31 pm
This isn't a plug a play setup, you MUST add a 20A relay into the current horn circuit and the horn should be hooked up directly to the battery using appropriate wiring (12AWG) and be fused with the appropriate 20A fuse.
Jon, no, I don't think you need to do that. It's been working fine in testing, blasting for 15-20 seconds at a time, repeated times, and the wires are not warm at all. The OEM wiring is working just fine, in the real world. Had the system not been able to handle the wiring/power load, I'd put in a relay/separate fuse setup. Typically that is the method I use.

Conversely, if someone wanted to do a separate hot wire with relay, that is also possible.
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Re: Horn addition

Post by JonTheChron » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:49 pm


After reviewing the specs for using a dual H3F setup, the amperage draw is 16A way more than the 10A horn circuit provided by the H2SX.

Not to mention that according to the SM, the horn circuit appears to share it's power with the taillight circuit. Loosing the brake light due to the horn blowing the fuse could be catastrophic.

It's never heard of anyone installing dual horns this way, to me it's a definite no-go.
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Prof J
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Re: Horn addition

Post by Prof J » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:22 pm


Jon, thanks for the thoughts and info. It's the first time I've done it straight, as in past setups the bike would cough-up without a direct power/relay setup.

I'll do some brake on with horns and see what materializes, and post back up.

Either way I am way more comfortable with higher attention getting horns, which is the point of the post.
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Re: Horn addition

Post by Burmashave » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:43 pm


Prof, the thing is, it's often hard to know that electronics are under stress until they fail. I would guess that connectors and especially the horn switch, not the wires, would be most likely to fail. You can't see that the switch is under stress or failing until it doesn't work properly, and by then, the damage is done. For certain, the horn switch was not designed to handle the amperage that is now going through it.
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Re: Horn addition

Post by Prof J » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:02 am


Burmashave wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:43 pm
Prof, the thing is, it's often hard to know that electronics are under stress until they fail. I would guess that connectors and especially the horn switch, not the wires, would be most likely to fail. You can't see that the switch is under stress or failing until it doesn't work properly, and by then, the damage is done. For certain, the horn switch was not designed to handle the amperage that is now going through it.
You and Jon make very good points. It'll be simple to power it by relay. All the hard work is done.
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terrordbn
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Re: Horn addition

Post by terrordbn » Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:34 pm


I am pretty sure biggest concern is running all that current through the left control housing horn switch. The stock horn does not use a relay so all the current flows through the horn switch. This switch was not designed to handle more than 10A of current. This is one of the main reasons a relay is required to bypass the switch with the higher current load. It may work for a while but continued use at the higher current levels will fail this switch prematurely.

This thread also has the entire wiring diagram for download. Its super nice to figure out how things are wired on the H2SX!

viewtopic.php?f=8&t=742#p6796

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Re: Horn addition

Post by danham » Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:45 pm


As others have noted, the switch is the big issue. Long before you can feel heat in the wires, the contacts inside the switch will be hotter than they were designed to be which will speed up corrosion, arcing and pitting and they will fail.

-dan
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Re: Horn addition

Post by Champ87 » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:22 pm


My suggestion - connect a meter inline and determine the actual current draw. I fitted a pair of FIAMM El Grande horns my Triumph Sprint. They looked very similar to the Bosch horns. Actual measured current draw for the pair was only 5 amps with no noticeable spike on initial button press. With that in mind 16A sounds high.

ProfJ’s setup may be within the capability of the existing wiring. The thing is, we don’t know the rating for that circuit – unless someone here has looked at the wire size. The circuit has a 10A fuse but that is not a normal operating load - it’s a failure point. I’ve found that fuse ratings are often double the anticipated operating load so, without better information, we could assume that the circuit will handle 5A continuous load. Meter readings of actual current draw may reveal that ProfJ’s setup is not too far off. I agree that a relay and dedicated wiring for the horn is a preferred installation. I wouldn’t wire direct on my bike, but I don’t foresee electrical failure if actual current draw is close to design load.
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