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Old 10-03-2007, 03:08 PM   #1
Ursan
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Exclamation My Xenon HID conversion

If any link is broken, please let me know, until then please go to my PhotoBucket 780 Project Page


Okay, to start off I was totally inspired by Homer to do this mod.

BUT seeing that E-code lamps for my 780 are rarer than, well, E-Code lamps for a 780 I wanted to go with something that 1: didn't scatter light all over the place, 2: wasn't illegal, and c: was unique and different.

So, I started gathering parts. A (soon to be) pair of broken 780 headlamps. Pair of Bi-Xenon Projector lamps from an Infinity FX35 (does both high & low beam). They use DS2 Xenon bulbs.

Now, for those of you not in the know, the SAE/DOT 780 head lamp is primarily in 3 pieces. The lens, the what I call the "middle piece" and the reflector. I don't know if this is unique to the 780 or if all Volvos do it this way to some degree or another.

The reflector is cemented to the "middle piece"





With this dense caulk-like substance which loosens with a heat gun


Once I remove the reflector, I made a temporary cardboard plate to position the projector into the headlamp.

which looks like this from the front:


I also toyed with the idea of installing 2 into the lens assembly:

but I may decide against it.


The outer lens will be replaced with either .25" or .375" MR10 Lexan which is UV and chip resistant. I need to build it up around the "middle piece" to make it contour with the hood, but it shouldn't be an issue.

I'll also adapt the original reflector (which is aluminum) to encase the new projector to protect it & use an actual dust cover from another set of projector lamps cemented to the reflector. I'll post those pics as I progress.

Anyone have suggestions/comments?
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Last edited by Ursan; 12-12-2009 at 12:16 PM.. Reason: NEW SERVER
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Old 10-03-2007, 03:44 PM   #2
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My comment is that this is pretty bad ass.

now I need something straight here - are you the one who had that grey 244 with the wild taillights at the newburyport swap meets?
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Old 10-03-2007, 03:52 PM   #3
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2 looks good. Not sure the look of it will thrill everyone, but that's cool that you're trying something new and thinking about new options.
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Old 10-03-2007, 04:07 PM   #4
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why not de-flute the stock lenses?
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Old 10-03-2007, 04:30 PM   #5
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why not de-flute the stock lenses?
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Old 10-03-2007, 04:38 PM   #6
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I am he.

http://mysite.verizon.net/vze352h3/taillight/seven.html


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My comment is that this is pretty bad ass.

now I need something straight here - are you the one who had that grey 244 with the wild taillights at the newburyport swap meets?
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Old 10-03-2007, 04:38 PM   #7
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the lenses are glass. It'd take a LOT of effort.



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why not de-flute the stock lenses?
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Old 10-03-2007, 04:46 PM   #8
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maybe, but wouldnt it fit better?

i know its been done before...there is a grinding solution you can use i believe.

i give you props for taking this on. especially making the lens. keep updating this.
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Old 10-03-2007, 05:21 PM   #9
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Without a doubt. But I've never defluted a glass lens. Anyone here ever attempt it or know anything about it?

Is it something a dremel can do or a sanding pad on a drill press?

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maybe, but wouldnt it fit better?

i know its been done before...there is a grinding solution you can use i believe.

i give you props for taking this on. especially making the lens. keep updating this.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:02 PM   #10
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volvospeed guide in there


sounds like it IS a huge pain in the butt. however, we dont have the jewel'd headlight option that 850's and their kin have.
if you have the acryllic availible, maybe try it and see how it looks/holds up/fits.


unless you want to spend a lot of time sanding/polishing. i would probably go the defluting route myself, but it might take a lot less time to make new lenses of acryllic.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:24 PM   #11
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That's what I was thinking. BTW, I was just at VS.com & read all about it. One guy mentioned spending 8 hours & not getting good results. Besides, I'd hate to risk breaking the lenses.

ONE THE PLUS SIDE. The 780 lenses are almost flat & nicely rectangular. So making up a Lexan lens won't be too hard. I was planning on cutting a strip long enough to run the length of the perimeter of the lens. Then heat gun the 90° bends into it & then belt sand it to the correct front angle. THEN either make up a bracket that the front lens would slip into or mount it flush to the perimeter piece & use small screws & some sort of sealant to seal it up.

The perimeter piece will also need a groove cut into it so the "middle piece" can be inserted into it (for lack of a better term.) The stock glass lens has a groove cut into it that it rests over the middle piece. If a single piece doesn't work, I'll cut 4 pieces the correct length & figure out how to get them in there. I may even trace a stock lens & use it as a template for the whole thing.

It'd wind up looking something like a jewel lens, but prolly stronger in the long run.


There's ONE other option that I can use. I can bring the glass lenses to a glass place & have them cut out circular pieces directly in front of the projectors & then somehow cement in a clear flat tempered disk in it's place.

I can also make the whole thing from fiber glass & just cut a hole in the middle, but that might look rather gay.




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Originally Posted by HonestJhon View Post
volvospeed guide in there


sounds like it IS a huge pain in the butt. however, we dont have the jewel'd headlight option that 850's and their kin have.
if you have the acryllic availible, maybe try it and see how it looks/holds up/fits.


unless you want to spend a lot of time sanding/polishing. i would probably go the defluting route myself, but it might take a lot less time to make new lenses of acryllic.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:27 PM   #12
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this should be tried with S2k projector/HIDS......sexiest hid on the planet? maybe
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:29 PM   #13
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if there is a glass place, ask what they'd do to deflute it.


also, when i was bending lexan last time, i had the best results with boiling water, and bending it around wood.
when i tried using applied heat, it would bubble. the boiling water got it just soft enough to bend around a block of wood.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:39 PM   #14
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The boiling water is a good point. I wish I could make a mold of the stock lenses & do that vacuum molding thing.

I could ask them about defluting too. I read that article & was thinking I could use my drill press to deflute the lenses too.

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Originally Posted by HonestJhon View Post
if there is a glass place, ask what they'd do to deflute it.


also, when i was bending lexan last time, i had the best results with boiling water, and bending it around wood.
when i tried using applied heat, it would bubble. the boiling water got it just soft enough to bend around a block of wood.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:41 PM   #15
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I like the idea but I don't think the lexan would flow good with the car. I would go the de-fluting route or have it professionally de-fluted if thats possible.
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:50 PM   #16
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im sorry if someone said this, but you should deflutethem make them clear and paint the bezel body color, mmm with the clear lenseeee, vette! and honda fit!
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Old 10-03-2007, 11:55 PM   #17
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You may be right, but defluting may not be an option for me. Thankfully the lenses are rather flat and I think I can duplicate the concave of the lens fairly close.

I will be checking with some glass places & see if they can offer some defluting suggestions.

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I like the idea but I don't think the lexan would flow good with the car. I would go the de-fluting route or have it professionally de-fluted if thats possible.
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Old 10-04-2007, 12:07 AM   #18
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Like I said, if I could I would. But if something goes wrong, I'm out a chunk of change.

I dunno what you mean by the bezels, they aren't exposed on the 780. Just one big lamp.


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im sorry if someone said this, but you should deflutethem make them clear and paint the bezel body color, mmm with the clear lenseeee, vette! and honda fit!
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Old 10-07-2007, 04:43 PM   #19
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Exclamation *Weekend update* (many picts)

Ok, so this weekend I was still repairing the front airdam of the ol' 780 and whilst the epoxy was curing I thought it'd be a good time to return to the headlamp thing.

I completely stripped out the lamp to it's barest components. Here is the center section:


I also went out & got a router because it really is the only way to make those joints.

As we see here:

and here


I then took measurements of the glass lens & I think I can approximate the dimensions & contours in lexan. I first made the sides of the lens.





I'll trim them and use my belt sander to level out & contour as needed. I'll use plastic cement & small screws to assemble them. I am at the moment undecided if I want to permanently seal the lens to the center section, or use screws to attach so I can clean it from time to time. But since I'm sealing it all the way through, it may not be necessary.

The front lens will be a thinner material made of MR10 which is stone & UV resistant.

I then addressed the rear section by first removing the 9004 bulb socket and enlarging the hole:


then I stripped out a crappy projector headlamp assembly & used this cup:

inserted it into the new hole:

so I can reuse the dustcap:


That will be sealed up nicely when done with high temp silicone.


I then made a "shroud" of sorts with .375" Lexan to match the reflector base & bored a hole in it. I also made a lip around it's perimeter so that the reflector has something to rest onto:

and


The projector mounts like so:




When assembled, the whole thing fits like this:


And this:


Now, The projector hole piece (shroud?) is clear Lexan. I can paint it silver. I've also seen people paint it black. I was also thinking I could leave it clear & perhaps mount some sort of DRL in there. The reflector is still intact. Might be different. I may have to try it and see.

I know some of you have suggested that I deflute the lens. although that is a good idea, it does have drawbacks. First, I may never get it totally flat and clear. There would always be some sort of distortion. second, based on what I've read, this action can actually weaken the glass. then there's the possibility of irreparable damage to lenses that are both expensive and difficult to replace. Even if I did deflute them well enough to use, if anything happened to them I'd have to start all over again. With the Lexan lens, I can quickly reproduce them & plan to make spares just in case.

Now there's the matter of the self levelers. The projectors did come with self leveling motors, but I decided not to use them as I just don't want to create the hassle of making one. I could try to incorporate something in the car to utilize the existing aimers with electric motors (from power mirrors perhaps) but with the self leveling suspension, I don't think it'll be an issue. To me it'd be a novelty that would wear off quickly.

Now, I don't know how other Volvo lamps are made. I don't know if the reflectors are made of plastic or aluminum like mine. I don't see why not to do this to an 86+ 240. though I have seen 86+ 240 lenses completely defluted with 7" round Cibie E-Codes stuffed in them. My point here is that this should be do-able with anyone's lamps. Easier even with the greater & cheaper availability.

Thoughts/comments?

Last edited by Ursan; 04-24-2009 at 10:03 PM.. Reason: NEW SERVER
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Old 10-07-2007, 05:39 PM   #20
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Want to send me the self leveleing system? I'd like to integrate them into my existing levelers.
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Old 10-07-2007, 05:55 PM   #21
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It's just a motor. It gets signal from the cars ECU. I don't know if you could get it to work.



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Want to send me the self leveleing system? I'd like to integrate them into my existing levelers.
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Old 10-07-2007, 06:46 PM   #22
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Oh nevermind then.
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Old 10-08-2007, 02:51 AM   #23
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acetone/small bits of lexan make a GREAT glue to stick all that together.

and its cheap and easy to get (you have scraps/grindings laying around, im sure)

looks good so far man. keep up the good work!
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Old 10-08-2007, 11:05 AM   #24
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Oh yeah. The acetone basically melts the parts together doesn't it?

I could build up the walls better too.




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acetone/small bits of lexan make a GREAT glue to stick all that together.

and its cheap and easy to get (you have scraps/grindings laying around, im sure)

looks good so far man. keep up the good work!
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Old 10-08-2007, 03:49 PM   #25
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you mix acetone with bits and pieces of plexi/lexan and it turns into a "paste" that you spread where you want to connect pieces. when you're done, the acetone evaporates, and you're left with solid plastic.
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