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Thread: Front end lighting mods

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date:  Feb 2012

    Location:  Brisbane, QLD, AU

    Posts:    39

    My VIN:    4322

    Front end lighting mods

    After owning my D for 6 years, I've come to realize I've never been entirely happy with the front end light setup and output from factory.

    Over the past year or so, I've made some minor modifications I thought I would share. Apart from having to buy a spare set of front turn signal housings, everything below is reversible to stock, with no modifications to wiring or holes in the body.

    1. DRLs
    I've always hated amber front turn signals for some reason. I tried blackout covers but not enough light was getting through.

    There are also no aftermarket options that match the DeLorean turn signal housings, so I dremelled off the amber lens, while keeping the black bulb housing intact. Using the original screws, I found that a clear lens from a BMW E30 would fit.

    I also replaced the stock incandescent bulb with a switchback white/amber LED. These show white when the parking lights are on, and switch to amber when turn/hazards are activated. Technically they aren't DRLs since I haven't gotten around to wiring them on with the ignition, but they work in much the same way.

    2. Headlights
    I had a set of Sylvania Silverstars, which were brighter than stock but still output a fuzzy cutoff and yellowish light. Picked up a set of DMCNW LED lights which had a much improved output, but still a fuzzy cutoff. It seems to be that the fuzzy cutoff is related to the use of lens optics, although these are really the only options if you want a stock look.

    After much searching on Amazon, I installed a set of these:
    https://www.amazon.com/bicyaco-Recta.../dp/B07C2KTYTK

    No modification to the buckets needed. The middle 4 rectangular elements are low beams. The top and bottom round elements are high beams.

    While they don't look stock, the cutoff from the projectors is much sharper. With combined high/low beams in one unit, I have wired these to illuminate all 4 on low beam, and all 4 on high beam as well.

    I had a close look at the JW Speaker and Truck-Lite options, but they looked too bulky for the housings, and the cost with shipping to Australia was excessive, so I wasn't going to take a chance on them.

    3. Driving/spot lights.
    Even with the new LED headlights, I felt the need for more high beam light. While I don't do much countryside driving with the D (too many 'roos!), it would be nice to have that option. Plus the streets near where I live are often dimly lit. I settled on a pair of 6 inch, single row, Lightforce LED light bars. They mount to the lower rock screen bolts. Cabling runs through the angle drive grommet and underneath the console to a relay. The relay is controlled by a rocker switch sitting in one of the dummy console switches. I haven't finely adjusted these yet but they seem to give a good spot beam of light despite how low they are mounted.

    I've attached a few pictures below. Might not be to everyone's taste, but comments are welcome.
    Attached Images

  2. #2
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    You you show us a picture of the view ahead of the car at night with headlights on (drivers POV at night)?
    I installed e-code housings with a relay and heavy duty wiring direct from the battery on my old jeep, and the difference was night and day. Aside from combining the headlights to work all four together, the wiring is unchanged? I would imagine there is a pretty decent voltage drop given the distance and flimsy gauge of the factory wiring.
    5 speed, grooved hood, grey interior (Nov '81)
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  3. #3
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    I thought about a clear lens for the turn signal fixture to use as DRL, however by law in the states they have to emit amber for turning. That would require dual incandescent lamps, or some bi-color LED solution. Either way there would be wiring involved. Not afraid of that, but other priorities got in the way.

    Looks nice. Good work.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date:  Feb 2012

    Location:  Brisbane, QLD, AU

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    My VIN:    4322

    Quote Originally Posted by jackb View Post
    You you show us a picture of the view ahead of the car at night with headlights on (drivers POV at night)?
    I installed e-code housings with a relay and heavy duty wiring direct from the battery on my old jeep, and the difference was night and day. Aside from combining the headlights to work all four together, the wiring is unchanged? I would imagine there is a pretty decent voltage drop given the distance and flimsy gauge of the factory wiring.
    I've been meaning to get some night time photos, so I will hopefully have something this weekend. Forgot to mention there is a pin change required on the low beam connector. I got the details off this forum. The headlights came with extra connectors with spades, so instead of a pin change you can just plug the spades in the right way.

    With regards to wiring all four together, these LED headlights have 3 prong connectors. This is a direct fit for the factory low beam connector. For the high beams, it's also a direct fit, except one prong from the light is unused. If you leave it like this, you get 2 low beams and 4 high beams.

    All I did was connect this unused pin to the appropriate low beam wire, which then allows all 4 low beams to come on at the same time

    Quote Originally Posted by iflights
    I thought about a clear lens for the turn signal fixture to use as DRL, however by law in the states they have to emit amber for turning. That would require dual incandescent lamps, or some bi-color LED solution. Either way there would be wiring involved. Not afraid of that, but other priorities got in the way.

    Looks nice. Good work.
    Thanks. For DRLs, The switchback LED would be the way to go - white for parking lights, amber for turn signal. Plug and play with no wiring changes. Although I'm only generally familiar with USA laws, I think you guys may require amber parkers so this won't work.

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date:  Aug 2018

    Posts:    55

    Nice work!

    I solved my front end lighting problems by choosing not to drive at night

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