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      06-01-2013, 06:30 PM   #1
M3PO
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Did Some Headlight Mods (instructions inside)

DISCLAIMER: This is at your own risk. I wrote this after the fact and may have forgotten some minor steps so go slow and pay attention!

Basic things that you will need:
-Torx bits (screwdriver and/or ╝” drive)
-1/4” ratchet handle and/or driver handle
-8mm wrench (stubby wrench preferred)
-Masking tape
-Oven
-Sand paper (1500 wet paper)
-Paint of your choice
-Gloves

-LED rings (epoxy and wire taps should be included)
http://www.ebay.com/itm/271039143982...84.m1423.l2649
(If you wait, you can get them on sale, I paid $180)

-Clear projector lenses
http://www.theretrofitsource.com/pro...roducts_id=136

1) Remove the headlights from the car. If you can’t get this far using the internet and basic tools, you should stop now! Remove both covers (top and back), the ballast, computer, blinker bulb, H7 angel eye bulb, and HID bulb. Basically, you want to remove everything that’s easily removed before you bake them.




2) Remove the screw near the blinker under the vent tube. This is the only thing holding the lens to the housing (besides the adhesive). Preheat your oven to 180-200F and pop it in. I left them in for about 8 minutes. Remove the light while wearing gloves. Begin to pull the lens away from the housing starting from the inboard side (near the kidney grills). After you get it started, stop and start pulling from the other end. If you pull it from one end, the shroud in the lens will hang up on the on the projector shroud causing scuffs. You want it to come off as straight as possible. Also, it's a good idea to "cut" the glue strings with your finger as you and re-stick the glue strings so they don't make a mess on the parts you are about the paint. Be careful because the small orange LED corner light needs to be disconnected or you will tear the wires (brown wires going from the housing to the lens in the pics below). With the lens removed, you can unscrew the black shroud and blinker housing from the lens. Remove the cover from the blinker reflector.







3) Remove the OEM light tube from around the projector by carefully unclipping the top at both ends. Remove the screw that holds the two halves to the bottom of the projector shroud.


4) Remove the cornering light. There are four screws around the corner light shroud that need to be removed. Disconnect the 12V wire to the corner light. You will also need to remove the screw for the brown cornering light ground wire. There are four screws that hold the bottom half of the cornering light into the housing that must be removed to remove the angel eye reflector.

The assembly snaps together and is easy to disassemble. The inner angel eye clips onto the cornering light housing and also clips onto the shroud.






5) To remove the projector assembly, the two screws circled in red must be removed (one is already removed in this pic). The other side will slip out of the pivot. The projector should be loose now but the ball-and-cup adjuster/actuator will not allow it to be removed. From the back, there are two screws that hold the actuator in place. Removing those screws will give you enough space to wiggle the ball out of the cup. Disconnect the electrical connectors to the projector assembly also.




6) Start prepping for paint. I used Rustoluem Flat Black Enamel. It is cheap, readily available, and super durable. I have used it for literally everything and it’s infallible as far as I can tell. Best of all, it’s virtually a perfect match for the OEM black shroud. I sanded everything I painted with 1500 grit wet sanding paper until all of the chrome was gone to ensure everywhere was sufficiently sanded. I painted the projector shroud, cornering light shroud, and turn signal reflector flat black. I also tinted the cornering light lens.


Sanded shroud on the left:


Both cornering light shrouds sanded:


Left blinker reflector sanded (interestingly, one of mine was black and one was white underneath the chrome):


To paint the ring between the angel eye ring and the cornering light lens, you need to ensure that you have a nice sharp paint line. To do this, I wrapped the cornering light lens in painters tape and reinstalled it. It’s important to mask off the back as well to protect the cornering light reflector. I used a plastic bag.





Paint the rest of the parts you want to paint. Go slow and use light coats.

7) Tint the cornering light lenses. To ensure a nice glossy finish to the tinted lens (because VHT Nightshades is not glossy), paint the INSIDE of the lens. Use a single heavy coat. A few light coats will yield a blotchy finish. To mask the lens, tape the OUTSIDE very carefully.


8) Paint the cutoff shields. This is common practice on the headlight/HID forums. If you paint the shields black, the projector lens appears dark. If you paint it green, the projector lens will be green. Painting the shield doesn’t affect the output because you are painting the side that faces toward the lens (away from the bulb and reflector).

Disassemble the projector assembly. The projector assembly needs to be removed from the black plastic cage. It can be removed by removing two of the four screws/nuts (three of four circled below) but I removed all four even though one is a bitch to get to. With the cage off, remove the four screws that holds the lens holder to the reflector/projector housing. This will also free the cutoff shield. With the cutoff shield removed, mask the BACK to prevent overspray getting on the back. This WILL affect output. Again, I used a bag, to protect the actuator. I used gloss black high temperature paint for this. I’m not sure that it gets hot enough to require it but “better safe than sorry”.






8) With everything painted, it is time to reassemble. Pop the cornering light lens back into the housing. Now install the inner angel eye ring. They will slip onto the cornering light housing and stay in place. You have to get them on flat/evenly (I eyeballed it). Make sure that the cornering light is clocked the right way and the AE wires are coming out on the bottom (so they can come out of the bottom of the shroud for ease of wiring later). Now, slide this “assembly” into the cornering light shroud. Again, make sure everything is oriented correctly and the AE ring is level/flat! Once you are certain everything is positioned correctly, turn the assembly upside down and use epoxy to glue the AE to the cornering light housing and the shroud. Some of the epoxy is circled in red,






9) To install the new lenses, bend the tabs that hold the lens in place and remove the old one. Place the new lens in the holder. You may need a couple spacers that TRS offers. Reinstall the cutoff shield and the lens/lens holder assembly onto the projector reflector. Re-install the cage and reinstall the projector assembly back into the headlight housing. Don’t forget to plug the electrical connectors back in.




10) It is a bit tricky to get the outer ring straight. There in an infinite amount of ways to position it on the projector shroud and only one is correct/straight!

I ended up making a “jig” out of shoe box cardboard. I put the projector shroud upside down on the table (shown on a white sheet of paper. I then determined that I needed two rings of cardboard to space the AE ring up enough evenly until it barely made contact with the housing.

Don’t space it up too high or the shroud may lift off the table defeating the purpose of the “jig”. If you don’t space it up high enough and there is a gap between the ring and the shroud, the epoxy will run down the front ruining your paint job. Once you’ve got it right, you can epoxy it. Make sure not to epoxy it on the outboard side where the epoxy may be seen by looking at the light from the side. I glued it at the top, in the middle, and at the bottom. Again, the wires should come out of the bottom.

Reinstall the projector shroud/AE assembly. You will either need to make a spacer out of the old angel eyes or shave down the post where they screw on since they are no longer there.




11) Wire both of the rings to the H7 angel eye plug using the supplied taps. Brown is ground (black on the rings) and yellow is 12V (red on the rings).

12) Reinstall the black shroud and blinker assembly in the lens. Push the lens on as much as you can and bake the light. Push the lens back on all the way when it’s hot. Reinstall the screw near the blinker, the ballast and computer, and all of the bulbs. Reinstall the covers and install the light.

Some tips:
A) Try not to touch things. It’s easier not to get fingerprints on things. That will reduce scuffs, scratches, and lint when you have to clean them. I bagged everything.

B) When you paint parts, give them as much time as possible to dry so that VOCs (volatile organic compounds) evaporating from the drying paint don’t fog the inside of the lenses. I left mine for a week because this was a spare set of lights.

C) I tried tinting the blinker lens on a test light. It looked fantastic but light coats of VHT Night Shades resulted in blotchiness and a heavy coat crazed the lens.

D) If I did this over, I would paint the projector lens holder.

E) The light coming out of the tinted cornering light lens is a dull brownish color. Not particularly attractive. When they are off, the tint is very attractive. It masks the vertical lines on the lens. I may opt to code them out.

Here are some pictures of how they look (need to take some better ones):





The driver’s side is still stock in these pictures with a modded (polished reflector) Angel iBright V4 in it (and yes it's oneven you you can't tell!). These were taken with the car facing into the sun at about 6PM. Notice the dark projector lens. With the new lenses, the cutoff is much sharper and the output is better as well. As you can see, the passenger side bright spot is larger and more intense.

And finally, here is a pic of my cat making an angry face:

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Last edited by M3PO; 06-01-2013 at 08:12 PM.
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      06-01-2013, 07:19 PM   #2
///M Power-Belgium
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WOW.... the result is amazing,also a very good DIY !
I have done already a lot of things by myself,but this i don't dare..... never !( i even think your the only one)
BTW.... congrats for this, and THX for sharing .

Last edited by ///M Power-Belgium; 06-02-2013 at 10:48 AM.
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      06-01-2013, 07:38 PM   #3
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Nice write up with detailed instructions! Looks great. LOL at the cat! didn't see that coming.
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      06-02-2013, 12:35 AM   #4
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...not even gonna attempt lol
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      06-02-2013, 03:12 PM   #5
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Taking the pictures and uploading is already a tough job. ^^
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      06-02-2013, 03:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HK8888 View Post
Taking the pictures and uploading is already a tough job. ^^
It took me about 4 hours to put that together and it still could be better!
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      06-02-2013, 03:42 PM   #7
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very very nice, thanks for the write up!
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      06-04-2013, 08:17 PM   #8
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Nice job on the DIY! I open up my 05 TL headlights but for some reason i don't dare opening up these headlights
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      06-05-2013, 09:33 AM   #9
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Looks good.
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      06-05-2013, 10:50 AM   #10
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Great DIY thank you.
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      06-05-2013, 11:36 AM   #11
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Bravo Zulu!
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      06-10-2013, 08:30 PM   #12
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Appreciate the compliments gentlemen! I will get some better pics of the results at some point!
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      06-10-2013, 08:35 PM   #13
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Nice.
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      06-13-2013, 10:28 PM   #14
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Too much risk vs reward.....
I like the LucÚ halo's tho...
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      06-13-2013, 11:38 PM   #15
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Great job, I wish I had the balls to attempt this
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      06-17-2013, 08:20 PM   #16
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I really really reallyyyy want to attempt a headlight mod myself but it scares me :/. Great write up though. If I grow some balls ill be following this!
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      06-18-2013, 01:36 AM   #17
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Wow!!! I just bought my car so I don't even have the stones. Really nice job though!
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      06-18-2013, 02:29 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mo0pie View Post
I really really reallyyyy want to attempt a headlight mod myself but it scares me :/. Great write up though. If I grow some balls ill be following this!
Just go slow, pay attention, and document everything and you will be fine. I bought a broken light for $20 on Craigslist to experiment on. That really helped as well. You might want to keep an eye out for one on CL or eBay.
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      06-18-2013, 03:52 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3PO View Post
Just go slow, pay attention, and document everything and you will be fine. I bought a broken light for $20 on Craigslist to experiment on. That really helped as well. You might want to keep an eye out for one on CL or eBay.
I have seen the insides of a 2011 535 headlight but it was pretty busted up. Not sure how similar they are and I'm not entirely sure where I would start. Just seems like there are so many options to how to go about modding e9x headlights. But thanks for the advice. New to the forum and great to see how friendly the community is
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      06-18-2013, 04:22 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mo0pie View Post
I have seen the insides of a 2011 535 headlight but it was pretty busted up. Not sure how similar they are and I'm not entirely sure where I would start. Just seems like there are so many options to how to go about modding e9x headlights. But thanks for the advice. New to the forum and great to see how friendly the community is
They should be very similar and it will show you the basics (opening the light, how the adaptive bi-xenon works, etc) but I would try to get an E92 light (any E92 light) so you can learn the specifics.

I did A LOT of experimenting and painting on the test light before I decided what I was going to do. Also, I bought a set of used lights for cheap (~$500) on eBay so I had my stock lights to fall back on if I really screwed anything up. I spent the same amount of cash on these mods as the shops charge INCLUDING the extra set of lights!
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      06-18-2013, 04:45 PM   #21
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Excellent job, man. Always good to see people not afraid to get their hands dirty and work on their own car.
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      06-18-2013, 04:55 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whats77inaname View Post
Excellent job, man. Always good to see people not afraid to get their hands dirty and work on their own car.
Thank you sir! I am a DIY guy and will always recommend it to others (if possible).
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