Incandescent Headlight Bulbs

In Australia/New Zealand the 668's I've seen have all had incandescent bulbs fitted, of 30W/35W.  This may be due to Australian ADR rule requirements, particularly one that was proposed, but subsequently rejected, for lights to be 'always on'.  The bulbs are nothing short of pathetic, and other markets appear to have had twin 60W/55W Halogen H4 bulbs instead, as shown in the Laverda parts book.  Unfortunately the H4 bulbs have a quite different collar and a different bayonet socket fitting as well.  There is an upside, however, as the Laverda parts catalog does list the holders as a seperate item.

Another alternative, in the case that you simply must have H4 bulbs or your original unit is damaged by a stone chip as my first one was, is to replace the entire headlight unit with one that has the right fittings for H4 bulbs already.  Matt Callaghan has done this to his 668.  It's not without problems though, as he explains:-

"I finally got them fitted. What an effort! I've only had a brief run up the road so far (10k?) but here are first impressions

"Positives: I can see! I can give up smoking now as I don't need to use my lighter to provide light when riding my bike at night! (I had a lot of problems with the wind blowing out the flame anyway!) Replacement semi sealed units $25. Total cost of conversion (to me as I supplied my own labour and  had the resources of the worlds largest dairy site maintenance department at my disposal) $86.00. This cost would be substantially higher if I had paid to have it done but I am sure it would still be less than the $500.00 ex Italy I was quoted for a genuine unit.

"Negatives: replacement weighs 250g more than original (this would not be a problem except that the assembly is carried on 2 5 mm bolts screwed into mounts in the nose fairing) I'll know fairly soon if this a long term issue as I ride some atrocious roads. Effort required to fit, wow! where do I start! essentially the reflectors stick out the back under the instrument cluster a bit further requiring this to be lifted 10 mm, in turn this fouls the brake hoses and levers at full lock. In the end I spent some time making a variety of compromise adjustments to get everything to clear. I hope I get used to it quickly. And finally the 'bug eye' bulging headlight look is no more, the replacements are almost flat. I guess this will make it easy to make headlight protectors though!"

Since then the front fairing mount on Matt's bike has sheared off and the instrument cluster mounting plate has cracked, so it looks like it may not be the fix for everyone.

Another option (fitted to a 750S, and well documented here) involved using standard car type inserts and fabricating a mount from a 10 mm phenolic board.  This looks to be close to ideal also!

Park lights/Running lights

The standard bulbs fitted as pilot/park/running lights are only 3W on the 668.  These are not particularly bright, and are pretty much useless as an alternative to having th emain lamps on.  There are brighter and more powerful bulbs available, such as 6W Xenon Hella lamps.  They are still nowhere near as bright as having the headlamps on, but make a better compromise than having the lights off altogether, especially if you're not wanting to drain your battery.

They remain on when switching to normal or high beam, so make sure that your battery is always in top condition!  Another 6W total may not seem a lot, but the EFI system does take a lot of power, and you will be adding more strain to the regulator, even if only a small one.


© Steve Carr, 2001-2007

Site created February, 2000.  Last modified Friday, May 15, 2009

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Last updated
30 May 2005