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Wimpy Horn Replacement

enzo5000

Well-known member

theMucker

Well-known member
Premium Member
I've been riding since 1971 and owned more than a few motorcycles. I was also a motorcycle mechanic for a few decades and have ridden hundreds of motorcycles of almost every brand. I have NEVER known of a motorcycle that came with a horn worth retaining on the bike. So any time that other riders put in some effort to make their bike more "noticeable" to the rest of the world WHEN THINGS GET DICEY, I'm all for it.
When I took an R18 for a test ride, I tried out the horn and was not surprised to find it "lacking". Like most bikes, it's too much like the "beep beep" that the Roadrunner gives to Wiley E. Coyote just before he blasts off in a cloud of dust.

Enzo5000, thanks for showing that a louder horn can be a simple swap to a better horn. I was wondering if the BMW's electronics might be "sensitive" to a replacement. As an example, my 2016 Indian Roadmaster has modern electronics that monitor all uses of it's electrical devices. If a device uses more or less power than expected, it results in a "check engine light" and "fault code" that has to be sourced and corrected. When I swapped the wimpy horn to a pair of horns made by Hella, the change in impedance caused a fault code and the bike shut down power to the horn after more than a second of use. I had to add a resistor to the circuit, making it imitate the original horn in in electrical impedence in order to fix the problem. I'm pleasantly surprised that the Germans haven't made the R18 so darned complex.
 
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TodkaVonic

Well-known member
Elite Member
If anyone does this mod (worth it), be sure to confirm that the horn and the kickstand don't collide. There's a tab on the stand mechanism which gets pretty close to the horn. It'll make sense when you check it.

/Thanks R2K
 

Luis

Active member
Don’t forget to tell any electronic / warning lights issues after installation or use, please
 

HerrFarber

Active member
I can report that this horn is much louder than the stock horn and easy to install. Remove the nut from the back of the stock horn with a 13mm wrench and unplug the wire connector. Remove the nut from the back of the new horn. Plug the bikes wire connector into this horn and install it to existing bracket. Tie wrap the wires to the existing wiring to keep it out of the way. There is no interference with the kickstand and using the horn does not trigger any codes. In my opinion this is a must do modification and costs about $30 US delivered form AutohauseAZ.com. In Phoenix they delivered it personally the next day.
 

HerrFarber

Active member
I think there is room if you get creative with the mounting brackets. 2 horns would mean twice the current draw that could be up to 10 AMP. That might trigger a code requiring a load shedding relay from the battery. Too complicated in my opinion.
 

theMucker

Well-known member
Premium Member
I think there is room if you get creative with the mounting brackets. 2 horns would mean twice the current draw that could be up to 10 AMP. That might trigger a code requiring a load shedding relay from the battery. Too complicated in my opinion.
When adding a second horn, it would be a good idea to install a relay that shunts power directly from the battery to the horns. That way, the horn button only sees the power needed to operate the the relay itself.
 

firstime911

Member
May be two disc horn would look nice. not too big possibly fit on the same place, plus remian classic look.
81Dy1HobvqL._AC_SX355_.jpg
 

McEnroe

New member
Hi all,
I am not an expert on this and you should talk to a proper BMW service if you are planning to change this at your bike.
Not sure if you know - you can get some hints for the installation of the horn here:
Looks like in the early version of the R18, BMW planned to use a horn that looks similar (or the same - I don't know) to the 5series horn.
Go to: https://www.bmw-motorrad.de/de/service/manuals/install-manual.html
Then scroll down to: "Motorgehäusedeckel"
Read and tick box: "Hinweis gelesen und akzeptiert" (= I have read the notes and accept)
Choose Language "English"
Go to page 11 for proper picture and torque specs.
The guide is not intended to give information about how to replace the stock horn - but it gives you some idea on how that horn should be fixed.
Best, McEnroe
 

TodkaVonic

Well-known member
Elite Member
Hi all,
I am not an expert on this and you should talk to a proper BMW service if you are planning to change this at your bike.
Not sure if you know - you can get some hints for the installation of the horn here:
Looks like in the early version of the R18, BMW planned to use a horn that looks similar (or the same - I don't know) to the 5series horn.
Go to: https://www.bmw-motorrad.de/de/service/manuals/install-manual.html
Then scroll down to: "Motorgehäusedeckel"
Read and tick box: "Hinweis gelesen und akzeptiert" (= I have read the notes and accept)
Choose Language "English"
Go to page 11 for proper picture and torque specs.
The guide is not intended to give information about how to replace the stock horn - but it gives you some idea on how that horn should be fixed.
Best, McEnroe

man, replacing the engine front cover looks tedious. There's about a dozen steps and the engine needs to be supported.
 

McEnroe

New member
No, not really - the manual is obviously for a completely different work. Just look at the one step in regards to the Horn on page 11 and ignore everything else. It gives you an idea about how to fix the horn to the bike.
 

TodkaVonic

Well-known member
Elite Member
No, not really - the manual is obviously for a completely different work. Just look at the one step in regards to the Horn on page 11 and ignore everything else. It gives you an idea about how to fix the horn to the bike.
right, I got it, recommended Nm of torque for the bolt holding the horn on. I'm saying that replacing the engine cover looks tedious. It's not just unscrewing the four bolts which hold it into place and sliding it out. One has to take apart most of the front of the bike and support the engine to do it per the recommendations.

It helpful because it answers the question "why'd they put the bolts for the engine cover directly behind the frame?" Answer: the frame isn't there when you access the bolts.
 

Gerard

Well-known member
Premium Member
This one produces 120 db !
The splitted version could be more easily accomodated.
With 20 amp , a relay is mandatory.
And they sell the wiring adapter to BMW OEM harness!






 
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