not for the faint of heart, this took me quite a while and a considerable amount of swearing!
Anyway, I modded the rear dome light on my Focus wagon a winter or two ago so I could get more light out the back of the car when I finished night rides. I've been meaning to do the same to the front ever since and a blown bulb provided the impetus.
4 XR-E WW of unknown bin
3 12V lightbulb drivers (got a bunch of bulbs in a job lot)
A handful of spare optics, include a bunch of really funky "Ledil Strada":http://www.ledil.fi/sites/default/fi...lens_guide.pdf optics that JonnyC on BLF very kindly sent me
Some alu plate, small heatsinks, Dell computer back plate blanks (the ones that cover the expansion slots, v. useful things) and 4#40 nuts'n'bolts
What it used to look like
making the heatsink/ mounting plate
see? Dell expansion covers are the shiz!
the front, with LEDs mounted
LEDs wired up, more or less (optic is just for testing)
drivers wired up. Took quite a bit of trial and smoke before my electronically disadvantaged brain figured everything out
now with all the heatsinks on and everything wired up. Took me forever to figure out why one of the side LEDs wasn't lighting up (went through a couple of drivers sadly) until I found an open break in one of the LED wires.
now with funky optics on. There's a Strada DN on the left most (driver) centre pair, a Strada T DN (asym) on the passenger side centre pair and pod (has a Carclo in the pic, but it was too focused so I changed it) and a Gaggione XM-L spot optic (from Ofroad'bent) on the driver's pod.
all together (before I took it all apart again)
from the side
from the other side. The whole assembly is hot-glued in and doesn't move. Hopefully it'll stand up to long term vibration, although it's not going to fall anywhere if it does come loose and its in there fairly tightly.
All on 1s, AWB and no idea about aperture
Centre light on
Pretty decent Scooby colour rendition. Hopefully we'll be getting some of those brownies back too.
The centre light is wired into the dimming circuit and so dims to off like the original light did, although it cuts out much sooner (I'm guessing the voltage drops below the Vf+overhead of the 2 LEDs in serial). It's a bit brighter than the original, I think (poor memory), but the back seat gets way more light now so the kids can see what they're doing when they get in and out of the car. Side pods are awesome, even if they don't get used much!
I also really like the Strada optics - they give a really nice smooth light and the asymmetric one does a good job of putting the light where it needs to be without a sharp cut off. I would have used one on the driver's side pod too if I'd had enough.
Another plus - never having to replace a dome light bulb again! Woohoo! That said, the 4 nights this took would probably cover about 10 years of bulb replacements
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