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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first technical write up for this site, so please be nice.

I spent a few years riding around Singapore and Malaysia where the road rules are based on the price of your car and no one seems to have spacial sense. A Mercedes beats a BWM which beats a Toyota and Bikes are dead last. I learn’t the value of fruity cans and a loud horn.

The Stebel Nautilis Compact horn is excelent, loud and small but it is sometimes hard to find enough space. It costs about $50. While it will fit straight on many bikes, it can be obtrusive and ugly. You may not know that it is possible to easily split the compressor component from the resonator horns and fit them seperately with an air tube between. This allows many more options as to where you to place them on the bike. This is how I did it on my 2010 MTS1200S.

How to do it.
Photo 1 – The Stebel nautilis Compact components

Photo 2 – The compressor is about 13cm long and about 5cm at the wides diameter.

Split the compressor from the resonators- it is held on by 3 things:

Photo 3 - A tab near the air outlet from the compressor. You can just break off the tab cage as you won’t be needing it.
- There is a small amount of weak glue holding the compressor onto the plastic. Just slide a flat screwdriver under the plastic to break the glue.

Photo 4 - The black plastic component has a built in air intake tube that has a ridge that pits into the compressor inlet. Just lever the plastic off the compressor to lever this ridge out of the compressor air intake hole and the plastic component should slide off the compressor. Note the compressor air outlet has a small o-ring seal.

Photos 5 &6 - I tried to make each unit as compact as possible so I used a Dremel tool to slice the plastic component into the resonator unit and also cut the air intake section out. I left enough plastic to drill and mount a bracket. I also cut off the allow mounting point off the compressor body as I don’t need that either. I think it best to try to keep the air intake section as it is small and should help to stop water getting directly into the compressor. I glued this back onto the compressor using contact cement and rubber banded it on and left it overnight.

Photos 7 & 8 - I found the compressor fits well in the Right side panel of the MTS but I thought it better to pad it out with neoprene. I had a drink cooler handy (Australians call this a stubbie holder) that I sliced up and cut to sive and glued on with contact cement and left overnight to dry. I then sprayed it black and it looks better in reality than the pictures. In the photos I have zip tied it ontoi the frame rail but I will make up a better bracket.


Photo 9 – a brass air line fitting (I think is ¼ inch thread) can be screwed directly into the air intake hole in the resonator. It fits perfectly and you don’t even need to tap it out. I used a thin smear of silicone to make sure it seals. NOTE, don’t screw it all the way in or it can block the air flow into the resonator. Screw it in about ¾ of the available thread. Other plastic options are available but this is what I had lying around. I used 8mm silicone surgical tubing and covered it with a black wiring cover I had lying around to make it less conspicuous where it is visible. I added heat shrunk the ends. As the compressor had a conical air outlet with no barbs I glued this tube on and added a small zip tie. I routed this tubing along the frame rail and under the Right side tank cover to the Right front shroud. It is easiest to remove the Right siade cover, shroud and loosen the Right side of the beak or remove it for access.

Photo 10 - I made up a simple bracket for the resonator out of stainless from a boating shop. This is called a chain plate but you can use anything. This was bolted to the horn resonator with 2 stainless bolts, washers with nyloc nuts. I put poly plastic washers in between the bracket and the horn to add a little flexibility. The stainless bracket is twisted slightly to align the horn with the bike, allow it to fit neatly under the carbon shroul and also point the sound outlets out and down to maximise sound output and minimise water ingress.

To be continued
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Split Stebel Nautilis compact horn to a MTS1200 Part 2

Photos 11 & 12- I removed the standard horn. Note that this horn uses its mount for the vibration adjustment, so you have to loosen the vut and then wind the centre bolt like section out to remove it. I simply bolted the new horn section to the standard bracket. As the hole in the bracket is large I put a grommet in the hole and sandwiched this with large stainless washers. This again adds a little flexibility and I think this is a good thing for a horn.

Photos 13&14 - Now for the power. I have a Touratech TPS15 CAN Bus Output Helper fitted (I highly recommend this) so this bit is easy. I ran a double wire frm the standard horn spade connectors back to the relay that is fitted beside the TPS15. This is wired to the solenoid electromagnet. A earth wire is run to the –ve compressor terminal. A wire from the +ve compressor terminal to the solenoid switch and a wire from the other side of the solenoid switch to the +ve terminal on the TPS15. I did not fit another fuse as the TPS15 is fused.

If you have no idea about wiring, read this bit. The idea is that the CAN Bus can be very particular about electrical loads and the air compressor takes more amps than the electro standard horn. Wiring a high load device directly to the standard horn wiring is likely to trip an error in the CAN Bus system and wil also overload the wiring and melt it, risking a fire. Therefore a solenoid is used that is an electrical switch. It is an electromagnet that that can be operated with a small amount of power. When the magnet is activated it lifts an electrical bridge that can carry a high electrical load. This is the click you hear when the solenoid is activated. With this set up, pressing the horn button only activates the solenoid and the CAN Bus is happy to do this. This in turn sends power directly from the TPS15 to the compressor motor and you have a loud horn. The TPS15 is wired to only supply power when the bike is on (ie the dashboard is on). The motor does not need to be running but the horn will not operate if the bike is off and I think this best.

Photos 15 & 16 – Shrouds fitted back on. The compressor is totally hidden under the side cover and the resonator is just visible under the right front shroud. Job done. I have had to use it about 4 times so far and EVERY time the errant car (and in 1 case a semi truck) driver became rapidly aware of my existance.

I hope you have found this useful.
 

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Nice write up TimOz. I never knew those nautilus horns could be split like that. Definitely makes for a clean install. I was just going to install mine where the evap cannister is mounted, once I take that thing off. I think I can put up with the looks of it hanging there, because I love the nautilus horns.

It should be acceptable to wire power for the horn through the relay directly to the battery, isn't it? I had one wired into my 1100 multi like that, and the air cooled bikes are also CAN bus. What does the touratech CAN helper do?
 

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Great write-up - thanks so much. I have one of these horns on each of two cars - and bought a third for the bike - but it sits in the cabinet waiting for me to find a place for it. Your ideas are very creative - never thought about splitting it. I'm that much closer to starting my own install now.

As long as it's fused, I don't see any issue with connecting the relay direct to the battery - this is what I did on the two car installs. It likes big wires and lots of amps to be it's loudest.

Thanks again!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Wiring up the standard horn activation wires to a relay and wiring that to the battery is just fine.

The TPS15 is useful for 2 reasons.

1. If you add a few accessories, you end up with quite a few wires to the battery and either you can wire a couple things to a ring terminal or you end up with a stack of them and the chance of a dodgy connection.

2. The TPS has an inbuilt relay that is activated by the bikes ignition (mine is activated by the GPS +ve feed). This means that all accessories are forced off when the bike is switched off. Better for battery conservation and no idiot can activate any electrics while the bike is parked up. This is not an issue on the MTS1200 as I think the standard horn button will not be active with bike switched off.

I agree with Martinm3j that you should use heavy gauge wire. The horn draws 18Amps (that is a lot) so you need a 20 or 25 amp fuse and wire that can handle this current draw or you will have blown fuses at best or melting wire and a fire at worst. I can't tell you the wire size as Australian automotive wire is strange sizes and we would use >6mm but 10mm is better.
 

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whoa...timoz. You are not longer residing in Singapore already?

Greeting from singapore ^_^

I totally agreed with your comments on loud horn and pipes. works wonder. Always.
 

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Wiring up the standard horn activation wires to a relay and wiring that to the battery is just fine.

The TPS15 is useful for 2 reasons.

1. If you add a few accessories, you end up with quite a few wires to the battery and either you can wire a couple things to a ring terminal or you end up with a stack of them and the chance of a dodgy connection.
I've used something similar to this before. About $10 at an auto supply store. Put it inside of a small plastic box beneath the seat to weatherproof it. Had my CB radio, autocom, and heated gear wired thru it. I had it fused but no relay, so I had to be sure to turn eveything off when I got off the bike.
 

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really nice write up, sure wish the photos were larger so we could really see what you did. maybe you could push them to a photo hosting site and include links instead of attached the little pics?
 

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I did my install of the horn on my 04 but have an issue. wired in and used a relay etc as outlined. Problem: at higher RPM when I blow the horn the ignition cuts out. any ideas what this could be?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi Ststrada,
That is odd. Have you got the relay wired correctly? What type of relay is it? What bike are you talking about? IS it a CANBUS bike?

You need an SPST relay and the horn button should be wired to the coil that is pins 85 and 86. The other 2 pins (30 and 87) are wired to the battery and compressor.

You may have a single pole double throw (SPDT) wired incorrectly. It may just be a faulty relay but it sounds like an attribute of the bikes ignition. It worries me that you say it only happens at high revs. Is the bike's voltage regulator OK?
 

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My '08 did the same thing, with a nautilus wired through the supplied relay. The horn worked fine, but if you hit the horn at high speed/RPMs the ignition would cut out for a second. There was a thread about it on multistrada.net, the concensus being that the horn possibly drew enough power that the CANbus cut the ignition. It would be interesting to see if the nautilus does the same thing on the 1200s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My split Stebel works fine and I have used it many times. I can't believe the
the concensus being that the horn possibly drew enough power that the CANbus cut the ignition
. If that were the case, the ECU would misbehave due to a voltage drop as the horn is activated by the relay - and that would happen at low RPMs worse than high RPMs. I guess the CANBUS system could be sensing the current draw from the standard electrovibrator horn and having an issue if the solenoid in the relay has "other than standard' current draw but it is hard to think the UCU would cut the ignition.

Might be worth noting that the compressor on a horn like the Stebel will draw about 18Amps but the draw can be higher if the compressor is blocked. I kinked the air hose I fitted by accident when routing it and blew a 20Amp fuse.
 

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Welp, finally got mine up and running. Turned out to be quite the scavenger hunt for the brass fitting to the horn. It requires a 5/16" hose nipple to 1/8" pipe thread, at least that is what I used. Found it at ACE hardware.

I located the compressor same place.

Thanks to "TimOz" for the homework on this, I don't think I would have ever considered tearing apart the Stebel without those pictures and description. Well done!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for clearing up that air fitting size BMWSTRIDER. I am an old geezer but was entirely brought up in the metric system. I have no idea what 17 16ths of a cubit is. For some perverse reason air fittings are in neanderthal inches thingy measurements.
 

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We have been trying to go metric for 30 years or more, I have tools for both, metric is so much more simple but our trades just will not swap, too much stuff out there to work on that is still SAE (inches).
 

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Yet another (third?) way to mount the horn.

Figured I'd take the strategy of putting it where the evap cannister was, rather than trying to hide it. Being black/aluminum, it pretty well blends right in.

I did have to do some welding/grinding/hammering/cursing to create a very custom bracket. For you other metal bending guys, feel free to plagiarize and do something even prettier.

One more minor tweak versus other installs, I've made a point on all my vehicles to leave the stock horn connected. The relay for the Nautilus has a small delay, which is cool... I can do a very quick "hello" beep, and it mostly just sounds the stock horn. Or I can lay on the button, and the Nautilus kicks in a very short bit later. As long as you run good power to it (all wires except the switching wire from the stock horn were 12-ga), dual horns seem to work just fine.
 

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Do you guys mind if we copy this over to the Hall of Wisdom? It is a great thread.
 
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