The introduction of LED lighting offers great upgrade options for incandescent lighting that was originally supplied with the Honda BIG RED ATC’s. I recently upgraded a 1985 BIG RED with an LED headlight and wanted to do the same to some of the older model BIG REDS. The objective of the upgrade was to have the headlight fit into the existing housing, use the existing lighting switches, and not alter the wiring harness. I met all these goals when I upgraded a 1984 BIG RED 200ES. This same upgrade can be used on the 1982 and 1983 Honda BIG RED 200E’s but it will require additional modifications to mount the headlight to the retaining ring. I bought the LED light from ebay. Here is the link to the one I bought LED LIGHT for BIG RED.
1984 Honda BIG RED 200ES LED Headlight Upgrade
The LED headlight upgrade is easier to install on the 1984 as compared to all the other BIG RED models since the headlight is held to the retaining ring by spring clips. The existing spring clips can be used without modification. First thing to do is remove the headlight assembly from the housing. There is two Phillips head screws that need to be removed from the bottom of the headlight housing and then the headlight and retaining ring can be removed from the housing by tilting the retaining ring. Once removed disconnect the three wires to the headlight bulb and remove the headlight assembly.
Original light and close up of spring that retains the headlight in the retaining ring
Original headlight and LED light
Pic of LED light
Wiring- The wiring on this LED will plug right into the connector for the 1985 – 1987 250ES BIG REDS but will not work with the 82-84 model BIG REDS without modification. I cut the 3 prong connection plug off of the LED light and crimped and soldered on 2 male bullet and one spade connector so they can connect up without modifying the original wiring harness.
The color coding of the wiring between the light and wiring harness will not match. Here are the connections I made based on the LED light I used:
The YELLOW wire from the LED light will connect to the GREEN on the wiring harness
The BLUE wire from the LED light will connect to the WHITE on the wiring harness
The BROWN wire from the LED light will connect to the BLUE on the wiring harness
Note that this information is for reference only. You will need to verify your own wiring.
The new LED light will fit into the headlight retaining ring and the existing springs can be used to hold it in. Note to make sure the LED headlight is oriented correctly. Some of the LED lights are marked top and some are not. What I found is that the top row of LEDS light up on low beam.
LED headlight mounted in original retaining ring
The headlight looks different but it performs a lot better than the original 45 watt incandescent light in my opinion.
Low beam original incandescent
LED Low beam
High beam original incandescent
High beam LED. Notice that you can see the garage in this pic. 1982 – 1983 BIG REDS
The headlight was mounted to the retaining ring using two screws (top and bottom)for the 1982 and 1983 models instead of using the spring clips. This will require some modification of adding a bracket to the LED headlight or to the retaining ring to secure the LED headlight. I have not done this modification myself but I am sure it can be done. Here are some pictures of the 1983 headlight for reference.
Note the tab on the retaining ring and the threaded plastic block in the headlight. I have used this same LED light on the 1985-1987 BIG REDS. Here is a link to the article. 1985-1987 BIG RED LED Headlight Upgrade
Any suggestions or details of your own modifications are appreciated. Please consider sharing them on the forum.