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#1 2017-11-21 14:09:55

OAT
Member
From: Borders
Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 167

Upgrade Headlights?

I am not over impressed by the headlights on my old style Expert.

They are fine for normal driving on good roads in decent conditions but I spend a lot of time on the smallest roads I can find in all conditions and they are not so good there.

I am thinking about fitting a pair of spot lights or perhaps a spot and a fog.  I suspect that mounting direct to the plastic bumper would not be a good idea.  Are there any off the shelf brackets known to fit?

Also, is there a simple bulb replacement which would give a worthwhile improvement to the standard headlights.

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#2 2017-11-22 11:21:45

vaz2121
Member
From: SW. Scotland
Registered: 2015-08-31
Posts: 357

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

OAT wrote:

I am not over impressed by the headlights on my old style Expert.

They are fine for normal driving on good roads in decent conditions but I spend a lot of time on the smallest roads I can find in all conditions and they are not so good there.

I am thinking about fitting a pair of spot lights or perhaps a spot and a fog.  I suspect that mounting direct to the plastic bumper would not be a good idea.  Are there any off the shelf brackets known to fit?

Also, is there a simple bulb replacement which would give a worthwhile improvement to the standard headlights.

For standard headlights ...
As my van is a face lift it has a plastic headlight lens...... So I was warned  not to go down the route of fitting something like a rally style H4 bulb that's rated somewhere around 90/130W....... As there not likely to be legal for road use but more over I would most probably melt/burn out or set something on fire without upgrading loom ETC

IIRC  They were Osram (night breaker?) bulbs we fitted just about 18 months ago ........ not long before we went down to Spain as on the previous trip I was finding it uncomfortable in some places with the 306  without the fog lights on (being on the wrong side)
A little pricey I thought at the time....
Made a difference but not huge.......
I got on alright driving down to Spain (maybe placebo effect or I drove slower)

Anyway I'm thinking I'm getting used to them .... when I was much younger than I am now I was always looking for more light when driving the truck and as most folk now will have seen the lights on roof of cab

Back in the mid/late 80's (Not so widely done then) I remember asking the workshop to bolt on some angle iron to the front of the Air deflector  and what a revelation it was when using main beam with the driving lights (cibie super oscar) on the roof.......... There is a down side......... if it's raining reasonably hard never mind snowing/misty you either can't see or you get mesmerized from the oncoming droplets/flakes...... but anyway

one of the current projects.......
I've purchased a version of this (about £20 to the door) It's not particularly heavy or robust IMHO nor do I know how corrosion resistant it'll be 

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/23-Bull-Bar- … SwbYZXf0bF

Plus ordered and awaiting to try out.....(although waterproof ...been told worth running a thin bead clear silicon around edge of lens)

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2x-126W-20-L … 2749.l2649

Never tried LED's before and although thought about it ...... spotlights on the roof are a big hassle to fit and wire up
Just really got to get my relay etc and make up a basic loom

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#3 2017-11-22 20:38:13

OAT
Member
From: Borders
Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 167

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

Thanks vaz.

I have had a quick look at the Osram Night Breakers.  I see they have added an even more powerful "Laser" model.  Both claimed to be direct replacement for factory fit (Laser only in H7 and H4 fittings) and road legal.  Both seem to be around £15 a pair.

https://www.powerbulbs.com/blog/2016/09 … aker-laser

Wondering about your comments re melting plastics and overloading wires, what do you think?  I am surprised after reading the 130% increase claims that you weren't more pleased with the improvement.


For the spot/driving light, I was hoping for individual bracket mounts rather than a bar.  But where to fix them?  It is an awkward front end to add lamps without them sticking out in front.

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#4 2017-11-23 04:27:27

vaz2121
Member
From: SW. Scotland
Registered: 2015-08-31
Posts: 357

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

OAT wrote:

Wondering about your comments re melting plastics and overloading wires, what do you think?  I am surprised after reading the 130% increase claims that you weren't more pleased with the improvement.


For the spot/driving light, I was hoping for individual bracket mounts rather than a bar.  But where to fix them?  It is an awkward front end to add lamps without them sticking out in front.

I had been told something similar before in the mists of time ....... but
The comments that were given to me regards van and melting plastics etc was directly linked to refrain from putting in a much higher rated wattage set of bulbs i.e. 90/130W's
Which will generate much more heat within headlight and create a far larger draw on the wiring again generating heat possibly even melting the plug that goes into the bulb itself and the possibility of a loom fire

I have in the past with a motorcycle tried to use something like a 60/80W(or there about) H4 without a great deal of extra light success

In-turn it was explained to me that the factory wire used in the loom was to light (thin) and barely up to the job with the standard bulbs and that I would have been just as successful if not more so modifying the loom, using the standard wire and switch gear to activate a couple of relays and have a healthy direct feed to the headlight from the battery
Never did that modification.... (a bit over my head)....stuck with the cra* dip beam but added some spots to the engine bars.............

So maybe the Citroen etc loom suffers the same plight and that's why I didn't feel to have had a huge improvement also the wattage on the Osram bulbs is the same I believe as a standard H4 bulb ... It's a different gas used but it's still uses Halogen Tech ?

To be fair when across the channel and on the wrong side of the road our dip is obviously lighting up the kerb on the left that's not there therefore leaving a very dimly lit kerb that's now on the right (hence fog lights on 306 being handy) I tend sacrifice the light throw by lowering down the headlights (using elec height adjuster) which helps  but obviously is detrimental to the high beam
Again it helps not to drive to late in the day but at times it can't be helped and hence extra lights won't go amiss  abroad or here

For individual spot light brackets .... A flat bar bolted to a panel or the likes behind the grill (exit between grill and bumper?) and if needs a little bar at an angle for support (stop vibrations) either to bumper or top of grill
Like we did back in the day to minis and escorts.......
(Heath Robinson but effective)

Or a slim spotlight ? mounted as tight to the grill as poss and use some sort of flat bar behind where mounted on bumper to spread load
(I've seen something like this an they didn't seem to protrude out over bumper line

for example ... http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Chromed-Drivi … 0005.m2219

Nobody seems to make grill mounted spotlights anymore........ i.e mk2 cavalier, mk1 golf, range rover etc..........

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#5 2017-11-26 17:49:10

captainboggles
Member
Registered: 2017-11-26
Posts: 4

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

hi    worth trying a pair of the HID xenon lamps,  come with loom, relay, 2 ballasts and h4 bulbs for about £18  give a pure white light...and they not so current heavy... you legally only allowed 55/60 w lamps  haven't found LED's as good as cracked up to be, but they get better week by week..

Last edited by captainboggles (2017-11-26 17:51:17)

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#6 2017-12-25 17:41:48

Ricko
Member
From: SW Lancs
Registered: 2017-01-18
Posts: 82

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

I asked a question on here a little while ago about spotlights, someone directed me to a universal bracket that bolts behind the number plate to mount spots on. I'm going to have a go at making one. I've always thought the lights on my Dispatch were quite good, but the boy racer in me wants some spots on the front!!


2004 Citroen Dispatch 2.0 Hdi

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#7 2017-12-27 21:55:31

OAT
Member
From: Borders
Registered: 2017-01-03
Posts: 167

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

Went for the OSRAM Night Breaker Laser in the end.  Worthwhile improvement but I still want more.

Keep us posted on your bracket if you go ahead Ricko.  Although I don't know if your later model will apply to mine.

Speaking of lights...

Just followed someone with only front sidelights and no rear lights over Carter Bar on the A68 from Conset to Jedburgh.  Pitch black and at 50 - 65 all the way in dodgy conditions.  Made easier by the light covering of snow on most of the verges.  A bit of panic braking and occasional use of indicators for illumination.  Once out of my dipped light range it was invisible despite being white.  I hung back expecting to find it spun on every corner.

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#8 2017-12-28 00:06:41

Casper
Member
From: East Lothian
Registered: 2015-12-20
Posts: 1,039

Re: Upgrade Headlights?

Not been on that section of road for years. Do they still have the death toll signs at the Dargues/Troughend section? Great bike road if you like flying big_smile

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