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Correct headlight Black Shadow

toien

New Forum Website User
Non-VOC Member
Hi everyone. My name is Tobbe and I come from Sweden. I own a Black Shadow from 1951 and have a question about a few things. I have searched the forum for this, and hope that it has'nt already been discussed, if so, please forgive me. How can I get the right headlamp for my bike, it is not the Miller, and i've seen some replicas on Ebay, can it be both 8" and 6 1/2" on my bike? Are the replicas ok? I would like to have my bike look as correct as possible so i suppose a replica are ok, an original Miller seem to be quite difficult an expensive to get. Also, I have'nt the finned (correct name?) brake drums on the rear wheel, but on the front wheel, should it be the same on the back wheel as on the front?
Kindly
Tobbe
 

timetraveller

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Hi Tobbe. The rear drums should have fins but be sure to specify that they are for the rear as there are differences between the front and rear drums. As far as I know the correct headlamp for your bike is the 6.5" but they are expensive and it is difficult to fit a reflector to take a modern bulb. There are many replica 7" headlamps so the price is lower and they will take the modern reflector and bulb. Many of these are chrome plated so you might have to paint it. Many people will not notice the difference but if you must have originality then others on this Forum will advise you how to source the smaller headlamp.
 
Last edited:

Len Matthews

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
Obviously, the correct headlamp should be a 61/2" Miller but the replica 61/2" Lucas lamps currently available make a reasonable substitude. Have you made contact with the Scandinavian Vincent Club? Their members are very knowledgable and can answer your questions in Swedish.
 

Tom Gaynor

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
I bought a fibreglass replica Miller from Conways. I also have a steel VOC one. Externally they are identical. The only practical difference is that with the plastic one you need to bring a separate earth lead into the shell. This is probably a better idea anyway than using the (steel) shell as earth and relying on several dodgy connections to get back to the main battery earth. My main problem was finding a decent light unit, in the same class as Bosch, Lucas, Marchall, Cibie (which need a bigger 7" shell) to fit. It was easy to get Chinese ones, but the beam pattern was dreadful. The best (cheapest and easiest) solution was the Stanley unit fitted to 70's Japanese bikes like Honda CB 250, which is well made, is prefocus, and for which quartz halogen bulbs are available. I was told that some early VW Golfs used a Bosch unit that fitted the Miller shell, but was unable to track one down.
(The word you are looking for is "ribbed". Brake drums are ribbed (front and rear on the Shadow), and barrels are finned, and the distinction is that very shallow fins are ribs, and very deep ribs are fins...
Hi everyone. My name is Tobbe and I come from Sweden. I own a Black Shadow from 1951 and have a question about a few things. I have searched the forum for this, and hope that it has'nt already been discussed, if so, please forgive me. How can I get the right headlamp for my bike, it is not the Miller, and i've seen some replicas on Ebay, can it be both 8" and 6 1/2" on my bike? Are the replicas ok? I would like to have my bike look as correct as possible so i suppose a replica are ok, an original Miller seem to be quite difficult an expensive to get. Also, I have'nt the finned (correct name?) brake drums on the rear wheel, but on the front wheel, should it be the same on the back wheel as on the front?
Kindly
Tobbe
 

Albervin

Well Known and Active Forum Website User
VOC Member
The Vincent Owners Club Spares Company do quite a nice and reasonably priced 6 1/2" headlight that will fool most people into thinking it is "real". It costs £288 plus VAT but if you have a serviceable switch and ammeter you will save a bit. You may want to smash the lens and fit a nice replica though. If you intend to ride in the dark then you will have to compromise between originality and having a decent light. This could be as simple as fitting a halogen substitute globe or as complex as fitting a 12V alternator, battery etc.
Tom, your explanation on ribs and fins sounds fishy....
 
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