How To Install Bar-end Turn Signals

by Craig Vechorik

Items required (Available from our online store):

insulated wire: 16 gauge (about 5 feet) or from our on line store, the following:

61 12 8 060 012--harness directional switch to bucket R26-R69S
61 12 8 060 013--harness inside handlebar for signals EFS&T

63 13 8 054 159--bar-end turn signals Hella original, quantity 2

Bulbs, quantity 2 of 6-volt or 12-volt:
07 11 9 978 302--light bulb Hella turn signal festoon bulb 6-volt
07 11 9 978 311--light bulb Hella turn signal festoon bulb 12v

Flasher (your choice of one type):
61 31 8 048 141--flasher signal indicator relay 6-volt
61 31 8 048 146--flasher signal indicator relay 12-volt

Directional switch:
BMW part number HellaŽ switch 61 31 8 048 183 &
base 32 72 2 072 180 --directional switch base sloping singles & twins 1955-1969 for throttles with the machined round flat spot or
32 72 1 230 878--adapter turn switch base with mounting screw for throttles without the machined round flat spot Earles Fork singles and twins 1955-1969

The switch

In order to add the switch (part # 61 31 8 048 183) and switch base (part # 32 72 1 230 878) your throttle control must have a machined, circular flat spot, with a threaded hole dead center of the circular flat area. The original switch has terminal screws on the back which are marked. The screw marked "H" is for the horn contact. This means when the directional switch is installed, you will be able to blow the horn by using the hi/low horn switch or the directional switch.

If your throttle is not of that design, you will have to use the adaper base, 32 72 1 230 878 and drill and tap a 5mm x .8 hole in your throttle to mount it. .

If you are mounting the signals on pre-existing handlebars with grips and controls, you must determine if your handlebars have a exit hole for the wires and locating "notches" on each end of the handlebar. The exit hole for the wires should be underneath the handlebar below the center point. If the existing handlebars don't have this hole, you must drill one. Mark the bars and then remove the bars from the motorcycle. This is so that the hole is in the right position in relation to the position you like your bars. If your bars do not have the hole, they also will not have the "notches" on the handle bar ends, and you will have to remove the grips and cut them. This is easily done, using a dremel tool with a cut off wheel. Cut two slots in the part, and the proper location, and snap the piece out, using a pair of needle nose vise grips.

Cut a circular hole in the end of each grip. An ExactoŽ hobby knife works well. Notice that the Hella signals have a square locating peg on one side of the stems. Also, notice that the yellow lenses of the signals are offset, so the focus of the light will be directly forward and directly back when mounted on the bike. You will want to temporarily insert the signal into the open end of the bar and orient the lenses in the proper position. The body of the signal should be perpendicular to the ground.

Each end of the handlebar should have a locating notch in order to properly fit the original Hella bar end signal. If it does not, mark the bars as to where the slot needs to be cut. The square peg of the signal should fit into the notch and still maintain the proper orientation. Use a hack saw or a dremel tool with a cut off blade to cut a notch into each end of the handlebar.

Setting up the signals

Pull one wire through each side of the handlebars and have both wires exit through the center hole you drilled. One easy way to snake the wire through the bars is to use a length of ball-type pull chain, such as that used on lamp switches. Feed the chain through the bar to the end. Tie the wire to the ball chain and pull the wire through. Be sure and leave excess wire coming out of both ends and the center of the bars.

Remove both lenses from the signals. Remove the slotted aluminum end plug from the signals. Feed the wire through the center hole of each signal. Shove the signals into place in the bars. Be sure that the signals are shoved into the bar as deep as they will go. Sometimes it helps to use a plastic dead blow hammer to gently drive the signals all the way home into the bars.

In the signal, look through the hole from which you removed the external plug. Notice that there is a slot, just to the side of the hole that the wire emerges from, inside the signal. That is the expansion screw that you must tighten with a screwdriver in order to firmly mount the signal in the bars. Tighten that screw until the signal is firmly held in place. Slip the bulb tension spring on the wire and push it up the wire into the recess in the signal body. Strip back a short portion of the insulation on the wire and tin the bare wire with solder. Insert the soldered end of the wire into the brass connector, (which is sheathed with a stepped nylon insulator) and tighten the set screw onto the wire. Feed the excess wire back through the stem of the signal, while simultaneously pulling the excess of the wire out through the hole in the center of the bars. Repeat the whole process on the other side of the bars.

Insert the festoon bulb into the signal. Make sure the pointed tip is seated in the brass connector and the other tip is seated into the center depression of the external aluminum plug, while carefully threading the plug back into the body of the signal.
How to install turn signals

The Wiring

Connect a wire to the number 15 terminal on the brown switch plate in the headlight bucket. Connect the other end to the terminal marked "X" on the two prong flasher. The terminal marked "L" is then connected to the power in lead of the switch. You must use a 6-volt or 12 volt, 18 watt flasher to match the load of the festoon bulbs. If you do not, the lights will blink too fast, too slow, or not at all. The part number for the correct 6 volt flasher is: 61 31 8 048 141. The part number for the correct 12 volt flasher is: 61 31 8 048 146. The next wire must be connected to the "L" prong of the flasher and run to the number 54 terminal of the directional switch. The directional switch itself has three additional terminals. The "H" terminal stands for "horn." You connect the other end of the wire to the "HO" terminal on the brown switch plate in the bucket so the horn will work from this switch. The "L" means "left signal" and the "R" means "right signal."

The wire from the corresponding left and right directional bulbs connect to these terminals. If you experience problems with the speed of the flashing, or the lack of flashing, troubleshoot the system by temporarily running a wire from the negative post of the battery to the handlebar itself. Most of the time, a poor ground will cause the bulbs not to blink. If you find this to be the case, you may have to run a jumper wire from the handlebar riser to a solid ground on the engine or into the headlight bucket. Terminal number 31 on the brown switch board. The one with the brown wire is the ground terminal on the headlight switch plate.

I take pride in selling quality parts for pre-1970 BMW motorcycles, and for providing the best pre-1970 BMW motorcycle service available. If you need more help in installing your bar-end signals, please call my technical advice line. Please check our hours of operation. I'll be glad to try and help you trouble-shoot the problem.


Is there anyone repairing bar end turn signals when the expansion area cracks off?

Again, not to my knowledge. I have saved broken ones, by drilling a small hole through the handlebar, and into the body of the bar end signal, and then taping the hole and using a set screw to retain them. It works. You must be sure the set screw does not protrude above the surface of the bar.

How do you tell cheap signal copies from the authentic Hella brand signals?Hella bar-end turn signals

Real ones come in a bright yellow box with Hella logos printed in blue. Original signals have "Hella" cast in the yellow lens. The fakes signals don't have a cast boss (raised square area) that fits into a notch you must cut into the handle bar to fit it, keep it from rotating. Real Hella signals have a small terminal block inside with a set screw to attach the wire to the terminal block. Fake signals have the wire hard-soldered in and a short length of wire sticks out of the end of the signal.

Craig "Vech" Vechorik

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