Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connectors (2016)

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I'm currently (attempting to) wrap my head around installing a new wiring harness in my newly acquired MKII. It came with the old harness already ripped out and there's lots of non OEM wiring in there so it's super confusing for a novice like me, and a lot of the connectors don't match the wiring harness meant to drop into a totally stock setup.

I've heard that Lucas got a bad wrap for their electronics mostly because the OEM connections were poor. No idea if that's accurate or not, but I have a bunch of Japanese bike bullet connectors along with the correct crimp tool so I'm wondering if it's worth replacing all the connectors on the loom to those. As mentioned, the bike itself has a lot of non-OEM connections so I'm going to have to change out a bunch of connectors anyway, and if I stick with the Lucas style connectors, I'm going to have to purchase both connectors and crimping tool (which isn't cheap). Any thoughts?
 

concours

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

hobageeba said:
I'm currently (attempting to) wrap my head around installing a new wiring harness in my newly acquired MKII. It came with the old harness already ripped out and there's lots of non OEM wiring in there so it's super confusing for a novice like me, and a lot of the connectors don't match the wiring harness meant to drop into a totally stock setup.

I've heard that Lucas got a bad wrap for their electronics mostly because the OEM connections were poor. No idea if that's accurate or not, but I have a bunch of Japanese bike bullet connectors along with the correct crimp tool so I'm wondering if it's worth replacing all the connectors on the loom to those. As mentioned, the bike itself has a lot of non-OEM connections so I'm going to have to change out a bunch of connectors anyway, and if I stick with the Lucas style connectors, I'm going to have to purchase both connectors and crimping tool (which isn't cheap). Any thoughts?

Keep it Brit, easier repairs later, commonality with borrowed spares, etc. no drama. New bullets are fine. http://www.britishwiring.com/mobile/default.aspx
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

I think the bad rap Lucas connectors may have gotten was mostly from corrosion due to neglect. Use a little dielectric grease when you plug in the new harness and forget the ugly rumors. (rumours for you Empire types)
 

concours

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Danno said:
I think the bad rap Lucas connectors may have gotten was mostly from corrosion due to neglect. Use a little dielectric grease when you plug in the new harness and forget the ugly rumors. (rumours for you Empire types)
Corrosion as with any connection, but FRACTURE of the female bullets is common.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

In my long experience with British bikes & cars, Lucas electrics are well made for the price & very reliable. There is however one item that I think should have been improved upon, & that is the bullets & their connector sleeves. Unlike that other Lucas designed connector, the Lucar or spade which is crimped to not only the inner, but also the outer part of the cable, the bullets are only attached to the inner. Because the connectors supplied these days are of poor quality & corrode
separating cables often very difficult. When I rewired my 920 Commando I used the 4.7mm Jap type bullets & insulators. In my opinion these are far superior.

Martyn.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Also, from original fitting, the bullets were quite hard to separate and most people just yanked on the cable.
Over time they either got corroded or loose. As mentioned, crimping decent bullets to decent wire of the correct size will likely last a long time.

I was slightly shocked to see the prices being asked for proper Ripaults ripca crimp tools. I must have lost dozens.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Hmm, yeah I may try to stick with the Japanese connectors if I can since I already have the crimp tool for it and I don't mind having to throw new connectors on if/when I get new parts.

When I rewired my 920 Commando I used the 4.7mm Jap type bullets & insulators. In my opinion these are far superior.
I've never seen 4.7mm Japanese connectors...I have a bunch of 3.5mm connectors from a CB350 build. They seem to me like they'll crimp fine over the wire and the insulation. Any reason not to try??
 

L.A.B.

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

hobageeba said:
When I rewired my 920 Commando I used the 4.7mm Jap type bullets & insulators. In my opinion these are far superior.
I've never seen 4.7mm Japanese connectors...I have a bunch of 3.5mm connectors from a CB350 build. They seem to me like they'll crimp fine over the wire and the insulation. Any reason not to try??

I think perhaps he means this type of 4.7mm bullet connector:

http://www.vehicle-wiring-products.eu/p ... 7mm-bullet

 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

My mistake. What I should have said was 3.9mm.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Matchless said:
My mistake. What I should have said was 3.9mm.
Ah nice, thanks for the clarification! I'll go ahead and order a set of those and get crackin'! Thanks guys.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

concours said:
Danno said:
I think the bad rap Lucas connectors may have gotten was mostly from corrosion due to neglect. Use a little dielectric grease when you plug in the new harness and forget the ugly rumors. (rumours for you Empire types)
Corrosion as with any connection, but FRACTURE of the female bullets is common.

Is that true of new ones or just the 47-year-old ones in my bonepile?
 

L.A.B.

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Danno said:
concours said:
Corrosion as with any connection, but FRACTURE of the female bullets is common.

Is that true of new ones or just the 47-year-old ones in my bonepile?

It seems the original ones become brittle over time, due to whatever monkey metal it was they were made of! Although, in all fairness, they were probably never intended to last for 40+ years.
Example:
concours said:
Example:
GUTS said:

The latest types are normally plated steel and don't appear to suffer from this problem.

I certainly agree that ALL original female bullet connectors made of that silver-greyish metal should be replaced.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Since I wasn't keeping a stock harness I went with Weatherpack. They are pretty bulky tho. On the Ducati (1975) they used Molex.

There are more modern connectors that are smaller and weatherproof.
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

L.A.B. said:
hobageeba said:
Anyone know what gauge these drop-in wiring harnesses typically use?

The original harness wiring would have been '14/32' SWG (14 strands of 32 SWG wire).
The modern equivalent is metric 14/0.30, 1.0mm² or US '18' AWG.

http://www.britishwiring.com/14-Strand- ... p/c114.htm

Awesome thanks! Looks like the 3.5mm guys will work just dandy then. Good stuff.
 

jimbo

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

I went with Lucas all the way , done right they are very good. Steadfast supplies the correct bullets and crimper
 

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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

Thanks for that last post Jimbo---Man, I love this forum---Steadfast here I come. :wink:
 
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Re: Lucas Bullet Connectors vs Japanese Style Bullet Connect

As did I. Have done three bikes with it. Also agree that the females need to be replaced as a
matter of course.
 
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