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2020 Indian Challenger
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello Everyone,

(Warning - Lots of Pictures after the text!)

Edit: I've made a couple changes, they'll be just above the pictures then I'll add the additional pictures below.
Edit 2: At the end of March 21 the switch burnt up on me. I ended up installing the VCM3 module with the actual Indian driving lights. I'm not sure why it burnt up but my theory is the switch needed a current limit resistor on the switch power line.

TheGrish and I have been collaborating over the last couple months on a project and we wanted to write something up to share. Both of us had used MotoLight in the past for fog lights and wanted to install them on the bike using the factory connections. A quick look at the service manual revealed a connector called “fog lights” and that's when we both fell down the rabbit hole. As I write this, I realize how much effort we both put in and it could be done much easier but this was as much about the journey as the end result.

The install requires the fairing be removed but this post won’t cover how to do that. There’s plenty of documentation from Indian showing that process.

I’m going to summarize months worth of work, digging, and testing to what is probably going to be much shorter than it deserves. Let's start with some of our basic design goals:
  • Look as factory as possible, using factory connections where possible
  • Use Indian Parts where available
  • Get the lights installed and working with the Indian Switch
  • Make it so we can upgrade to the “fog light kit” in the future if we decide
  • Keep the costs low and functionality high
I think the two of us were the first people that MotoLight had worked with on the Challenger. Just as we really started getting into things, the COVID stuff hit and slowed us down a little. After a lot of research, here’s what we found:
  • There is a 4-pin connector by the heated grips connector for a fog light button. The button from 2018 Chieftain Darkhorse works. (Part number below)
  • There is a 3-pin connector in the fairing for the fog lights. The wiring diagrams from the service manual give the pinouts but not the connector style. (Molex MX150 Sealed Connector)
  • There is a 20-pin connector in the fairing for the VCM3 module. There is a wiring diagram in the service manual but little to no information can be found on this part. Our guess is that Indian will release a “fog light kit” in the future and it will be completely computer controlled by the VCM3 module. (Molex MX150 Sealed Connector)
  • The Indian Fog Light switch is a momentary switch that connects a pin to ground. (Low Pulse)
The momentary switch was the hard part. It has 4 pins, ground, 2 power, and switched. One of the two power connections is active by default on the bike. When 12v is placed to the other, the switch goes from glowing Red to Green. Since the switch is momentary, you can’t use a standard relay, you have to use a latching style relay. Since the momentary action connects the pin low, you have to have a special kind of latching relay. I really really wanted to find a latching relay with “memory” so it would always be in the last state. I thought that’s what I bought but it turned out not to be the case. In my case, I’m wiring the lights up to the Normally Closed pin on the relay so the lights come on by default unless I choose to shut them off.

We wanted to use the mounting location for the VCM3 module to keep the wiring neat and make it “factory.” TheGrish ended up getting a different relay and fabricated a part for it. I ended up designing a holder for the connector and the relay board, then 3D printing it. I’m very happy with the way it turned out. During the install, I had some issues with the design so I’ll need to do a version 2 holder but I used what I had for now. The relay board has a push button and I was worried the heat shink may compress it, so I printed a little cover for it as well. I soldered the wires on so nothing would vibrate loose and crimped pins on the ends.

Here is the Pinout:
VCM3 Side (Molex Connector)Relay Side
Pin 4 - Green SW LED PowerOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 6 - Switch Press OutputTrigger Pin
Pin 13 - Left Light Power OutOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 14 - GroundGround (-)
Pin 15 - Right Light Power OutOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 19 - Power IN (Switched)Power (+) and Relay Power (+)


For the 3 pin connector, the pins are much easier, left, ground, and right. I wanted all the connections to be sealed so I cut off the MotoLight wiring harness connector and put my own on. I made up a small wiring harness to go from the 3 pin connector to the two 2-pin connectors. (See the pictures below.)

For the physical install, I had a couple ordering issues so it took me longer to get this done. TheGrish got a radial set and I got the fender mounts. Unfortunately, the fender mount kit didn’t work so I contacted MotoLight and got the radial kit. I think with an extra spacer, the fender mount would work as well. After looking at TheGrish’s install, I liked how low the lights were mounted so wanted to do the same.

The radial mounts replace the bottom brake bolt with a longer bolt and mounting kit. We both got the black powder coat lights but some of the parts were silver so I powder coated mine to match. The directions are fairly sparse but not much is needed to get the actual lights mounted. Once the block is mounted and squared, you attach the light holder and the light. The cables get zip tied out of the way up into the fairing. There they are connected to a secondary wiring harness.

A note on our decision to make a secondary wiring harness. We both wanted the capability to disconnect a single light if needed. This can add a point of failure but also increases flexibility if needed. The wiring harness is connected to the factory wiring. The “imitation vcm3” module was put in place and connected as well. This leaves the switch mounting.

I mounted the switch first because it was one of the first parts I got because I wanted to understand how it worked. It fits in place of the plug on the left side of the bike. I was able to remove it using a panel remover but broke one of the clips. I don’t believe you can remove it without breaking it unless you remove the fairing and probably a couple more parts. The new switch fits in the same way and the wiring slides down through a hole to the existing harness. A quick connection there any you’re done.

That basically wraps up the install. A few zip ties here and there to make it look nice and put the fairing back on and you’re good to go. We’re also working with MotoLight to make sure they’re aware of a couple parts issues we ran into. Some of the hardware was sourced outside of the kit.

Part Numbers: (This is what I used and what is pictured) - All connector parts from Indian are the Molex MX150 series.
*For the 20 pin connector, the part number listed isn’t directly compatible. I couldn’t find the actual mating connector available anywhere so I got one that was readily available and just cut one key off.
** I wanted to try to keep the light colors all in sync so I found a 5000k LED narrow spot bulb. The color is close but not exact. This is also one of the brightest bulbs I could find. (And they’re bright for sure!)


Edits:

I ended up getting the factory Indian driving lights as I wanted as much light out in front as I could get. I'm still using the setup I did for my Moto Lights. I added a "Y" cable from the factory light connector to the MotoLights and the Indian Driving Lights. I was doing some research on fog lights and it seems more of an amber/yellow color is better, especially for lights mounted low. Since I had more "white" light in front of me, I decided to convert my Moto Lights to amber. This was acomplished with 2 steps. First, I ordered a 4"x8" sheet of Lamin-X Fog light cover and cut a circle out to put on the glass lens. Since any covering like that will reduce total light output, I change bulbs. The 2nd step was to install a 600 lumen, 10° 3000k MR16 bulb. This blub has a narrower beam angle and is rated 110 lumen brighter. The 3000k color temp really changed the yellow of the Lumin-x to an amber color. I haven't had a chance to adjust the lights yet and I haven't ridden with them yet.

I forgot to get pictures of the cabling before I closed up the fairing, oops!

Here are all the pictures!

Parts ready to go. (Spacers, lock washer, and short bolt heads powder coated)


Main Block Mounted


Light Mount installed


Light Installed



Secondary wiring harness



Installed for testing


Final Product before mounting


Installed



Secondary Wiring



Lights Mounted (Off)



Lights Mounted (On)


Test fitting the relay holder


Wires Soldered


Switch and cap


Factory light connector vs Sealed Connector



Plug Removed


Switch Wiring


Switch Installed


Bike on, lights off


Standard Color vs Replacement Bulb


New Indian Driving lights
614340


Here's the Y cable so I can run both lights
614342


Color testing the lights
614344


Lens and Lamin-x
614367


Light mounted
614368


Final result
614345


Question and Answer:

Q: Wouldn’t it have been easier to wire this up with the including wiring?
A: Absolutely, but that wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun or rewarding.

Q: Would this work with other brands of lights?
A: Yes. We both liked the look of MotoLight and have had them on other bikes. This could work for Clearwater as well but you’d have to work on getting the High trigger and variable light control.


Thanks!
 

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Tech brother, you are killing it with your detailed and very easy to follow mods here.....but I'm not an electrical guy and with my luck I'll end up cutting into a wire which would set fire to my Challenger. Once thing I can say, it appears that Indian has taken into account a LOT of future mods to this bike in regards to accessories and other contraptions!!! Great presentation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks all! It was a fun project to work on.

HyeHog said:
I'm not an electrical guy and with my luck I'll end up cutting into a wire which would set fire to my Challenger.
That's the beautiful part, there was no cutting into factory wiring, it just connected up!
 
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Tech, looks clean, smooth and I"m sure very purposeful. You can never have enough lighting on your bike. I see that you're in NW Ohio.....might ping you on my trip west in mid July.....as you really have a clue about the electrical components of our Challengers. Great job!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
No problem. I'm near Findlay, OH.
 
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I'm over near Fostoria about 15 minutes or so away from Findlay. No Challenger yet though.
 

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Reine, appreciate the outreach and offer....but let me get on the road and see how I'm doing for time and what route I end up taking. Only have about 18 days to get out west and back east and hopefully see a few sights along the way! Thnx again!!!
 

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Hello Everyone,

(Warning - Lots of Pictures after the text!)

TheGrish and I have been collaborating over the last couple months on a project and we wanted to write something up to share. Both of us had used MotoLight in the past for fog lights and wanted to install them on the bike using the factory connections. A quick look at the service manual revealed a connector called “fog lights” and that's when we both fell down the rabbit hole. As I write this, I realize how much effort we both put in and it could be done much easier but this was as much about the journey as the end result.

The install requires the fairing be removed but this post won’t cover how to do that. There’s plenty of documentation from Indian showing that process.

I’m going to summarize months worth of work, digging, and testing to what is probably going to be much shorter than it deserves. Let's start with some of our basic design goals:
  • Look as factory as possible, using factory connections where possible
  • Use Indian Parts where available
  • Get the lights installed and working with the Indian Switch
  • Make it so we can upgrade to the “fog light kit” in the future if we decide
  • Keep the costs low and functionality high
I think the two of us were the first people that MotoLight had worked with on the Challenger. Just as we really started getting into things, the COVID stuff hit and slowed us down a little. After a lot of research, here’s what we found:
  • There is a 4-pin connector by the heated grips connector for a fog light button. The button from 2018 Chieftain Darkhorse works. (Part number below)
  • There is a 3-pin connector in the fairing for the fog lights. The wiring diagrams from the service manual give the pinouts but not the connector style. (Molex MX150 Sealed Connector)
  • There is a 20-pin connector in the fairing for the VCM3 module. There is a wiring diagram in the service manual but little to no information can be found on this part. Our guess is that Indian will release a “fog light kit” in the future and it will be completely computer controlled by the VCM3 module. (Molex MX150 Sealed Connector)
  • The Indian Fog Light switch is a momentary switch that connects a pin to ground. (Low Pulse)
The momentary switch was the hard part. It has 4 pins, ground, 2 power, and switched. One of the two power connections is active by default on the bike. When 12v is placed to the other, the switch goes from glowing Red to Green. Since the switch is momentary, you can’t use a standard relay, you have to use a latching style relay. Since the momentary action connects the pin low, you have to have a special kind of latching relay. I really really wanted to find a latching relay with “memory” so it would always be in the last state. I thought that’s what I bought but it turned out not to be the case. In my case, I’m wiring the lights up to the Normally Closed pin on the relay so the lights come on by default unless I choose to shut them off.

We wanted to use the mounting location for the VCM3 module to keep the wiring neat and make it “factory.” TheGrish ended up getting a different relay and fabricated a part for it. I ended up designing a holder for the connector and the relay board, then 3D printing it. I’m very happy with the way it turned out. During the install, I had some issues with the design so I’ll need to do a version 2 holder but I used what I had for now. The relay board has a push button and I was worried the heat shink may compress it, so I printed a little cover for it as well. I soldered the wires on so nothing would vibrate loose and crimped pins on the ends.

Here is the Pinout:
VCM3 Side (Molex Connector)Relay Side
Pin 4 - Green SW LED PowerOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 6 - Switch Press OutputTrigger Pin
Pin 13 - Left Light Power OutOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 14 - GroundGround (-)
Pin 15 - Right Light Power OutOutput (NO/NC)
Pin 19 - Power IN (Switched)Power (+) and Relay Power (+)


For the 3 pin connector, the pins are much easier, left, ground, and right. I wanted all the connections to be sealed so I cut off the MotoLight wiring harness connector and put my own on. I made up a small wiring harness to go from the 3 pin connector to the two 2-pin connectors. (See the pictures below.)

For the physical install, I had a couple ordering issues so it took me longer to get this done. TheGrish got a radial set and I got the fender mounts. Unfortunately, the fender mount kit didn’t work so I contacted MotoLight and got the radial kit. I think with an extra spacer, the fender mount would work as well. After looking at TheGrish’s install, I liked how low the lights were mounted so wanted to do the same.

The radial mounts replace the bottom brake bolt with a longer bolt and mounting kit. We both got the black powder coat lights but some of the parts were silver so I powder coated mine to match. The directions are fairly sparse but not much is needed to get the actual lights mounted. Once the block is mounted and squared, you attach the light holder and the light. The cables get zip tied out of the way up into the fairing. There they are connected to a secondary wiring harness.

A note on our decision to make a secondary wiring harness. We both wanted the capability to disconnect a single light if needed. This can add a point of failure but also increases flexibility if needed. The wiring harness is connected to the factory wiring. The “imitation vcm3” module was put in place and connected as well. This leaves the switch mounting.

I mounted the switch first because it was one of the first parts I got because I wanted to understand how it worked. It fits in place of the plug on the left side of the bike. I was able to remove it using a panel remover but broke one of the clips. I don’t believe you can remove it without breaking it unless you remove the fairing and probably a couple more parts. The new switch fits in the same way and the wiring slides down through a hole to the existing harness. A quick connection there any you’re done.

That basically wraps up the install. A few zip ties here and there to make it look nice and put the fairing back on and you’re good to go. We’re also working with MotoLight to make sure they’re aware of a couple parts issues we ran into. Some of the hardware was sourced outside of the kit.

Part Numbers: (This is what I used and what is pictured) - All connector parts from Indian are the Molex MX150 series.
*For the 20 pin connector, the part number listed isn’t directly compatible. I couldn’t find the actual mating connector available anywhere so I got one that was readily available and just cut one key off.
** I wanted to try to keep the light colors all in sync so I found a 5000k LED narrow spot bulb. The color is close but not exact. This is also one of the brightest bulbs I could find. (And they’re bright for sure!)



Here are all the pictures!

Parts ready to go. (Spacers, lock washer, and short bolt heads powder coated)


Main Block Mounted


Light Mount installed


Light Installed



Secondary wiring harness



Installed for testing


Final Product before mounting


Installed



Secondary Wiring



Lights Mounted (Off)



Lights Mounted (On)


Test fitting the relay holder


Wires Soldered


Switch and cap


Factory light connector vs Sealed Connector



Plug Removed


Switch Wiring


Switch Installed


Bike on, lights off


Standard Color vs Replacement Bulb




Question and Answer:

Q: Wouldn’t it have been easier to wire this up with the including wiring?
A: Absolutely, but that wouldn’t have been nearly as much fun or rewarding.

Q: Would this work with other brands of lights?
A: Yes. We both liked the look of MotoLight and have had them on other bikes. This could work for Clearwater as well but you’d have to work on getting the High trigger and variable light control.


Thanks!
Thank you Tech, awesome job there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
No one else asked about it. I saw someone install a set of clear waters and some others that clamp to the highway bars. I'm very happy with what I have and it works great. People don't notice them unless they're on.
 

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Hi techrider, I have clearwaters on my challenger with the given relay and harness, it comes with a variable reistat for low beam use and high beam triggers for the horn and high beam headlight, all pre wired and includes niffty on- off toggle switch for power on, it definitly looks like an after thot placed in the factory knock out for Indian fog light button. I would like to use the OE button as you did. my question is, since I have the entire relay and harness installed and works great, I am just looking for power on-off trigger of 12v. With the factory OE button switch plugged in place at the 4pin plug is there a wire top side that sends a signal that I could then access for that 12v trigger? I really do not want a relay for a relay for a relay just to trigger two lights that are powered at the battery. Please give me a simple find, thanks so much for all your sharing and time spent.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hi Bobby... Unfortunately, the factory switch doesn't work that way. When you press the fog light switch, it connects the switch signal to ground. Because of that, you need something that can sense that pulse and change state. Secondly, the switch is momentary so once you release it, the connection is broken. You can tell by this design that the switch was meant to connect to a micro-controller. That relay board I found could be easily adapted to work that way.

Prior to finding that swtich, I toyed around with the idea of putting a different waterproof switch in that spot. Something that could be wired like a normal switch. I wasn't finding anything that would fit that size hole that wouldn't have looked awful on the bike. Your best bet might be to find something that's close and drill out the center of the plug. The replacements are only about $4 so it wouldn't be hard to get one to test. If you did that, you'd have to run wiring up to the switch but you could simply take the power trigger to the relay and run it through the switch.
 

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Thanks for the feedback and I get it. What I don't get is why Indian works so hard and goes thru s so much designed effort to control what accessories we put on? Thanks so much for your valuable insight and knowledge!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
You're very welcome! I don't look at it as an effort to control but more of design mentality. Designing it the way they did allows them to make it "smarter." Lights that don't turn on until the motor is running, a single button that has multiple color states, etc. There are advantages of switching to ground. You don't have inrush currents to worry about so you can make the switch differently.
 
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