New Digital Speedo

Discussion in 'Technical & Motorcycle Services' started by DesmoNut, May 27, 2012.

  1. DesmoNut

    DesmoNut Active Member

    May 27, 2011
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    Now I've got my new digital speedo up-and-running on my Tiger 250RS, I thought you all might like to see the finished result.

    The unit fitted is this; Spee... =full&id=4 . I originally ordered a slightly lower-spec. unit, but identical in appearance, but this came instead. I'm not complaining.

    Installation & set-up was simple; the accompanying instructions are very clear and available online in addition to the copy sent to you. I first had to identify the original wiring and then made AutoCAD drawings of the wiring modifications I'd make later and that took longer than the installation. The most time consuming part was making the mounting - couldn't find a machine-shop in town so made it all myself. I'm using any old spare bolts to fix it all down at the moment but will eventually get some stainless bolts.

    Screen is a good size at 65 x 45mm. Bar tacho (8000 or 16000 rpm), speed (kmh or mph) & fuel gauge (+/- 100, 250 or 510 ohm) are always displayed in the top row. Bottom row displays any one of Trip 1, Trip 2, odometer, clock (12 or 24hour), digital tacho. (reads up to 19000 rpm), average speed, trip time, total running time, voltmeter, max. rpm. achieved. There is a facility for displaying coolant temperature but that's not needed on an air-cooled bike so is switched off.

    Sensor for tacho is taken from the feed to the ignition coil on my bike but you can also wrap the sensor wire around the plug lead. Reading is very stable. A max. rpm warning can be set at anything within the range of the tacho.Approaching those rpm, the small warning light in upper left side of the screen glows green. Beyond the set rpm, it glows red.

    Sensor for speedo is taken from the original Tiger speedo drive. Acewell make a cable that has an exact copy of the forked end of the old speedo cable and this connects directly to a transducer at the wheel so that everything from the wheel to unit is electrical rather than a mechanical cable, making awkward routing no problem at all. You can also use a magnetic sensor but I thought the cable was much neater. Speedo is very sensitive - in the pictures, max. speed is shown as 6.3 kmh, which is the speed at which I pushed the bike to the front of the house.

    For night riding, the backlight is a very gentle light grey.

    Idiot lights; now have left & right indicator idiot lights, triangle is wired to come on in top gear, oil pressure isn't used.

    I was initially a bit worried that having the clock displayed when ignition is off might drain the battery. No problem - after a week of not being used, the indicated battery voltage dropped from 12.4 to 12.2.

    Clock displayed when ignition off


    Max. speed & rpm since reset

    Speedo drive

    Why did I choose the Acewell???

    Acewell & Koso were on my shortlist. I excluded those with an analogue tacho, which I'd really prefer, because they all seem to be calibrated to far too high a rev. level for a bike like the Tiger so only part of the rev scale would ever be used.

    I think the Koso DB01 is just plain ugly.

    I'd had a lot of very positive feedback on Acewell from friends who've fitted them in UK but not so positive for Koso. The Koso DB02r has features that I'd have no use for - e.g. thermometer(assuming that's for ambient temperature; I only need to know "comfortable or not comfortable"), shift & pre-shift lights (40 years of biking tells me when to change gear). On a previous bike with an all-singing-and-dancing instrument panel as standard from the factory, most features were ignored at best or became an annoyance at worst, so I'm not a fan of "more is better". Speed, rpm, clock are really all I want although the voltmeter is very useful. I much prefer the looks of the Acewell, especially the larger display. Acewell seem to have a far bigger range of speedos, too.

    But the absolute clincher was the response of the UK dealers I contacted. TheAcewell dealer replied same day, Koso took 2 weeks, by which time I'd bought the Acewell.

    So no big technical balancing of one feature against another, since these speedos. are all pretty much the same. It was really all about aesthetics & dealer service.

    I know someone will be thinking “You’ve doubled the value of the bike by fitting this” but I don’t care :wink:. The Tiger suits me very well and I certainly wouldn’t swap it for a Duke Panigale here in Thailand. In UK it'd be a different matter ..... :)
  2. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator
    Staff Member

    Jan 16, 2003
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    Well done.

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