I started looking at brake light modulators in an ever-ongoing quest to make myself and my Yamaha FZ6 as visible on the road as possible. In its most simple form, a modulator is a device that rapidly flashes the brake lights when either the front or rear brakes are applied. The theory is that the flashing red lights will catch a motorist’s attention and help to keep them from rear-ending you.
The problem with most modulators is that they “dumb” and often keep flashing if you hold the brake. Some modulators are a little smarter than that and will flash quickly and then hold steady while you are using the brake. However, if you release the lever / pedal and then reapply the brake it will flash again. This may not seem like a big deal, but motorists get fucking pissed when you keep flashing them in the face — especially with bright lights like mine, and especially at night. The last thing I need is to piss someone off because my modulator is doing its job.
Another issue is that modulators are effective because the flashing is unexpected. If the lights flash every time I apply the brakes, then it is possible that someone behind me may get used to it, thus defeating the purpose of the modulator.
So what’s a motorcyclist to do? Enter the Vizi-tec brake light modulator.
I paid what I consider a premium for the Vizi-tec system for two reasons: it has a twelve-second delay between flash sequences, and it featured a plug and play install for my FZ6. After wiring up a fuse block I was done with electrical work for awhile and welcomed an easy project. Vizi-tec said it was a quick install, but you read so much shit online it’s sometimes hard to believe.
I removed the plastic on my FZ6, connected the modulator, zip-tied it down, and re-attached the plastic in less than ten minutes. It took me about three minutes to zip-tie the modulator, so if you have better dexterity than I do your install time will be even less. Here’s what I did:
- Removed the seat to the FZ6.
- Unscrew the single retaining bolt that holds the right side plastic rear quarter faring to the bike:
- Pop the plastic rear quarter faring off — it’s held on by two plastic flanges so be firm but gentle.
- Hold onto your butt, this is where it gets complicated.
- Find the existing brake light wiring harness:
- Snap one end of the Vizi-tec modulator into the harness. It’s keyed so you can’t screw it up:
- Snap in the other end of the Vizi-tec modulator into the harness. It’s also keyed so you can’t screw it up:
- Zip-tie the modulator to the bike, replace plastic faring and screw it back down.
So, how does the Vizi-tec work? Check out this video I shot:
As an added bonus, the brake light on my Givi top case also modulates. It’s pretty sweet.
Overall, I am very pleased with the SupaBrake Flasher brake light modulator from Vizi-tec. At $73 shipped it was one of the most expensive, if not the most expensive modulator I found, but the flash timer and ease of installation really made a big difference between it and competitor products.