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What sort of headlights does your car have?
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
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 Posted: 09-01-2005 06:34 pm
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Mark Rosenbaum
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I drove my car at night recently, for almost the first time, and concluded that its headlights are charitably described as marginal.  I'm interested in what other owners have in their cars.

Please fill out the poll, and add any comments, recommendations or suggestions you may have.  Thanks in advance for all replies.

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 Posted: 09-01-2005 07:06 pm
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Joel
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doesn't jhps have some drop in replacements?

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 Posted: 09-02-2005 04:17 pm
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SportsRodder
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I added driving light under my front bumper, not legal but effective!

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 Posted: 09-03-2005 05:36 pm
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Greg Fletcher
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The Halogen Headlight - ZZ Beam headlight is at jhps.com--Warehouse--Electrical. They're $29.95 each and are an excellent light. The amount of extra light on the road compared to the original is surprising, you'll never go back to the stock head light.

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 Posted: 09-09-2005 05:14 pm
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edward_davis
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Mark, I'm sure you've already done this, but my experience with both my JH and the old VW beetles I used to have suggests that taking apart the headlight switch and cleaning up the contacts can make a big difference.  I just used an emory board, but emory cloth or a pocket knife can do the same thing.  The difference in resistence can make a difference to the brightness of the headlamps.

I just drove my JH at night for the first time (after I was satisfied I had fixed the short in the circuit...) and I found that my biggest problem was the aim of the headlights.  Of course, I was driving along the street-light freeways of the SF Bay Area and not the lonely highways of Arizona, so the ambient light might have made a big difference.

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 Posted: 05-09-2006 04:15 am
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mdutch
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I installed some nice blue-white halogens from Pep Boys right off the shelf.  Nothing fancy -- just cross referenced the bulbs that were in the car.  If you're interested, I can go dig up the box and let you know what they were.

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 Posted: 05-09-2006 04:29 am
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Mark Rosenbaum
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Thanks for the offer, it's appreciated but not needed.  If it becomes an issue (meaning, if I ever have to drive the car after dark again), then I'll likely bestir myself and get the guy at the local auto parts store to do that for me.

Or maybe I'll just hire a couple of linkboys with torches....  ;^}

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 Posted: 05-09-2006 04:49 am
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mdutch
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Yeah, why isn't there a coachmen around when you need one?

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 Posted: 05-09-2006 06:24 am
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Jensen Healey
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Hi Mark,

I have one Marchal H4 and one Sylvania sealed beam halogen thanks to the P.O. They seem to emit the same amount of light in the shine 'em on the garage door test. The main difference is the low beam cutoff on the Marchal is very sharp whereas the sealed beam scatters a lot of light above the desired cutoff. This is a characteristic of the H4 bulb itself and not the lens.

Certainly, a higher wattage H4 bulb would provide more light but I worry about the short lifespan and the wires that supply the headlight buckets. They look wimpy.

Kurt Housh

JH 13148

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 Posted: 05-11-2006 03:20 pm
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John Kimbrough
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Mark, the biggest improvement I made on mine was to put in solenoids and larger wires, so the full current does not go through the switching system.  See my web site for pictures, etc.

http://home.comcast.net/~jrkengr2/

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 Posted: 05-12-2006 12:19 am
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John Finch
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FYI, I followed John's instructions for the above procedure and have had no issues what so ever. Having had a near miss ground fault (small) fire from the panel dimmer switch with the car off & sitting the the garage, I decided to remove the "high voltage" from the panel area. This is the ticket. Thanks for sharing this John!

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 Posted: 07-24-2006 04:41 pm
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mdutch
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I'm using the Sylvania Silverstar halogens after removing the Sylvania Kool Blue.  No wiring mods.  Both sets of bulbs are VERY bright.

The old headlamps looked like my cub-scout flashlight, dim & yellow.  These new ones?  The deer and old ladies stand and stare...

Good thing I'm low to the ground.  I'd NEVER put these in a pick-up -- you'd probably get sued for eye damage!

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 Posted: 02-04-2007 12:08 am
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Jensenman
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I have a set of Cibie H4's with very bright 90W bulbs thanks to a PO. I was checking the wiring,  the stock wiring is marginal 18 gauge at best. I added two Bosch 30A 'ice cube' relays and used 14 gauge wire to supply power to the relays and also from the relays to the headlamps. The brightness increase was surprising.


EDIT: I ran my wiring the same way as John Kimbrough shows on his Web site, i.e. I used a single 14 gauge feed wire for both relays. I use a 30 amp fuse in the circuit. I will soon split the low beam and high beam power supply so that if the fuse for one blows I'll still have the other. This means running another 14 gauge wire to my power pickup point and adding another fuse holder.
 

 

Last edited on 06-14-2007 09:35 pm by Jensenman

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 Posted: 02-05-2007 11:50 am
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James Wilson
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My first night-time drive, in the cold and rain no less, found the lighting equally un-impressive. It was almost dangerous when combined with my near-sightedness and coke-bottle glasses....

I've upgraded to a set of Halogen lights with separate reflectors and the improvement is remarkable. I'm also likely to mount some old Lucas driving lights on brackets under the bumpers.

I've a few minor electrical issues to sort out too, so a re-wiring may not be too far off, after the engine gets re-built.

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 Posted: 02-05-2007 02:34 pm
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Jensen Healey
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I have some vintage Lucas driving lights on my car. Their output is pitiful. I keep the covers on because they look cool.

Kurt

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 Posted: 02-06-2007 09:15 pm
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Ron Earp
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Just always follow the Lucas Price of Darkness saying "A gentleman does not motor about after dark" and you'll be just fine.

Or may favorite one I heard or read some time ago:

Before turning on your headlamps slaughter an animal and walk around the car anticlockwise three times chanting "Oh Mighty Prince of Darkness protect your unworthy servant"

Ron

Last edited on 02-06-2007 09:18 pm by Ron Earp

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