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Newer LED bulbs
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 3:16 pm    Post subject: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

I had installed this
https://gowesty.com/products/headlight-upgrade-kit?_pos=1&_sid=d39c86714&_ss=r

I don't know if since then I replaced the bulbs with the wrong ones or... I don't know why but my lights seem super dim. Maybe I never noticed before? The boxes look shiny inside, not overly dirty or corroded or anything.

There now seem to be a ton of cheap LED options that swap directly into your late Vanagon square headlights. I just installed some and they work! It isn't quite evening yet, so I still haven't tried them at night, but they are much brighter. They are unfortunately not as yellow as the halogens, but I really need to be able to see.

These are what I got for only $40 for a pair:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07T1QKLXY?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details

The thing is... the ring you have to twist to hold them in... it never gets tight. Kind of loose. But the bulb seems to have an integrated fan... which suggest heat. Anyone have any suggestions on holding it together? Some kind of heat resistant tape or something? Dare I say Duc tape?!?
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bobbyblack Premium Member
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 3:32 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

superreggie wrote:

These are what I got for only $40 for a pair:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07T1QKLXY?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details

The thing is... the ring you have to twist to hold them in... it never gets tight. Kind of loose. But the bulb seems to have an integrated fan... which suggest heat. Anyone have any suggestions on holding it together? Some kind of heat resistant tape or something? Dare I say Duc tape?!?



That is the set I got too, and I had a super struggle figuring out how to get them to seat. You just have to keep turning them 1/3 of the circumference at a time, eventually you will get them to drop in, as if magic has happened, as you can't actually 'see' the little bits that the lights slip into.

My solution to the yellow vs white of the LEDs is to keep my brights inner beam bulbs the stock halogens.

I also do very much LIKE the LEDs you've found on the big A, but there are some for just a little more that are something like 18000 lumens, that another TS member mentioned moments after I got mine installed Wink

i'll dig up that brand, version if you'd like..

Edit: fount the ones I mentioned in my shopping cart.. heh;

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07D7SNYLV/?coliid=I18QV..._lig_dp_it

Its probable that 18000 Lumen is a bit higher than some folks 'out there' would like, whilst others would say "these are great!"
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 5:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

Thanks for that BobbyBlack, I did get mine to seat properly, its just that the plastic ring that is supposed to hold them on is loose and doesn't hold them on tight. Any better fitting of the bulbs wouldn't help I don't think. Did you have a similar problem with your ring holder-on things?
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 6:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

Ya, like a 3D puzzle. Its just fiddling around a while longer than you have done thus far.. It will all fit well, when you eventually get all the bits lined up, I promise!!

I've been in your shoes, believe me, even the same exact LEDs, they DO fit properly, I've had to take my housings into a warmer location to fit them, but be patient and like magic, they will just go in. I'm being honest as I can. I've been right there in your shoes.
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 6:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

I see, so the ring was loose on yours, even though the bulb was snug and all snapped in. Dang. Guess I'll keep fiddling.
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 29, 2022 8:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

Wow, those are bright. And cheap too. I'd like to hereby apologize to all of you who I will be blinding on the roadway, but I had to find a solution...
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 8:30 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

I went all-in on being as friendly as possible to oncoming traffic. I got all new headlight adjusters after years of DIY type solutions with sheet rock screws and fuel hose. BUT, the brand new adjusters also are quirky! First, they are extremely terrible to get started 'moving' .. I used a heat gun to warm them up, and then after I got hem started, I lubricated them with some dry lube and very carefully screwed out and in a couple of times before installing them in the housings. Even now, I find them to be difficult at best. BUT, I persisted in the aiming process. I've had Mrs. Black drive the bus with me in another vehicle oncoming, to see them after the aiming, and they were good.

I definitely would advise that if you are going with the 18000L units, be VERY sure your aim is perfect. Even the ones you have now are going to take a few nights of aiming to get them right. The aim is different from the standard 9004's. Most likely ALL bulbs are different, so any time you change bulbs, you should re-aim.

I'd say Good Luck, but you need to use good skill instead.

-bobby
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 8:48 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

Any attempt to "fix" the headlight problem while still using the factory glass bulb housings will be disappointing. The scattering from 30 plus years of sand blasting by the cars in front of you and the fact they were designed for European villages and cities with narrow streets make them unsuitable for our open roads. Up grade the entire package and you will be much happier.

Duncan
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 8:55 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

DuncanS wrote:
...they were designed for European villages and cities with narrow streets

Duncan


Only true if you have a European market vehicle, or if you or a PO shipped over E-Code's. DOT lights and lenses were installed on NA bound vehicles, and I agree that they are not good. However, some tiny baby steps to improved headlight 'throw' can be a start. I'd LOVE to get a whole package E-Code front end. But, I am in need of frugality, mostly due to self inflicted economic status. I'm firmly in the lower class territory, myself.
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 9:29 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

DuncanS wrote:
the fact they were designed for European villages and cities with narrow streets make them unsuitable for our open roads.

Duncan

Fun fact: there are many open roads in Europe, not just tiny villages. That's why headlights have two modes:
- Tiny village mode, aka low beam,
- open road mode, aka high beam.
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 9:32 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

bobbyblack wrote:
I'd LOVE to get a whole package E-Code front end. But, I am in need of frugality, mostly due to self inflicted economic status. I'm firmly in the lower class territory, myself.


I'm in the same boat. About 7 years ago on my current T3, I made the following change. Went to FLAPS and bought a pair of Sylvania Silver Star H6054 sealed beams @ $20 per. Took the head lights out of the car and with a Bernzomatic torch freed the OG glass from the frame. Dremeled out some interfering metal and put the new ones in with JB Weld. They were immediately 5000% better. And they got even brighter when I relayed them with 10 gauge wire that was direct from the fuse/relay feed.

A minor bit of carving of the plastic grill was needed, but they fit right in and look close to original. They may not be quite as good as a $4/500 package, but they are plenty good enough for me. There are newer versions with squarer corners too. By the way, clean the insides of the inner high beams and you will notice a significant improvement on those too.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Duncan
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:14 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

bobbyblack. wrote:
I went all-in on being as friendly as possible to oncoming traffic. I got all new headlight adjusters after years of DIY type solutions with sheet rock screws and fuel hose. BUT, the brand new adjusters also are quirky! First, they are extremely terrible to get started 'moving' .. I used a heat gun to warm them up, and then after I got hem started, I lubricated them with some dry lube and very carefully screwed out and in a couple of times before installing them in the housings. Even now, I find them to be difficult at best. BUT, I persisted in the aiming process. I've had Mrs. Black drive the bus with me in another vehicle oncoming, to see them after the aiming, and they were good.


Thank you for your service to humanity. Yes, with these new LEDs, everything does seem a bit pointed up. My... what do you call them? Adjusters? Seem in pretty good shape, so I'll work on that. I deeefinately don't need 18000, these are fine.

I still think I have the bulbs in properly and that I just need some kind of washer or spacer or tape or something, but I'll keep fiddling.


Last edited by superreggie on Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:21 am; edited 1 time in total
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:18 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

DuncanS wrote:
Any attempt to "fix" the headlight problem while still using the factory glass bulb housings will be disappointing. The scattering from 30 plus years of sand blasting by the cars in front of you and the fact they were designed for European villages and cities with narrow streets make them unsuitable for our open roads. Up grade the entire package and you will be much happier.

Duncan


I don't know, they seem pretty good to me. But my light housings are in good shape. I did this simple upgrade
https://gowesty.com/products/headlight-upgrade-kit
and it still sucks.

Which upgrade are you referring to?
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:23 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

[quote="DuncanS"]
bobbyblack wrote:
I'm in the same boat. About 7 years ago on my current T3, I made the following change. Went to FLAPS and bought a pair of Sylvania Silver Star H6054 sealed beams @ $20 per. Took the head lights out of the car and with a Bernzomatic torch freed the OG glass from the frame. Dremeled out some interfering metal and put the new ones in with JB Weld. They were immediately 5000% better. And they got even brighter when I relayed them with 10 gauge wire that was direct from the fuse/relay feed.


That's awesome! I'm not following "Freeing the glass from the frame". I mean, there's the front glass part, then the back chromed plastic bit. Aren't you replacing the whole thing?
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superreggie
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:26 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

I actually contacted TorchBeam, the manufacturer, for help, and I think they are going to mail me something.... I'm crossing my fingers, because if I can get this to work, it's straight up a bright solution for $40 with no work involved...
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 11:06 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

superreggie wrote:

That's awesome! I'm not following "Freeing the glass from the frame". I mean, there's the front glass part, then the back chromed plastic bit. Aren't you replacing the whole thing?


The whole factory gizmo the bulb mounts in is glass and is a single piece. If you take a Bernzomatic torch and play around the area where the glass is "glued" to the metal housing bucket, the glass will crack and come into pieces. You keep heating at the metal part and eventually the glass will come free.

Adjusters--The old ones will be brittle and may break if you try to remove them. Since you don't care about the glass, I'd try heating the whole assembly in super hot water and maybe the plastic will be able to be freed without destruction. if not, others are readily available-- https://www.busdepot.com/lights-lenses/headlight/headlight-adjusterI rebuilt the old ones with JB Weld and they work fine. You will also need new plugs as they are different from the stock T3 unit.

Duncan
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 1:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

The adjusters and anchors for the rectangular light are NLA for the originals. The "Classic Line" parts now available leave something to be desired. Go Westy sells the small pieces that snaps into the lamp body and receive the post separately. If your adjusters are just broken at the lamp housing end you are better off just the tip clamp.
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2022 10:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

Never had a problem rebuilding the adjusters. Vaseline on the metal and glob some JB around. Maybe a bit of Dremel clean up afterwards, but not a prob.

Duncan
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2022 6:15 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

What criteria do you use to aim the headlights?
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do.dah
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2022 7:17 am    Post subject: Re: Newer LED bulbs Reply with quote

LarryMart wrote:
What criteria do you use to aim the headlights?


https://www.danielsternlighting.com/tech/aim/aim.html
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