Headlights are both decorative and very necessary part of the car. With recent
laws they are used for day time marking lights or driving lights to indicate
that a vehicle is approaching. In the night they are especially necessary in
unlit or dim roads so they need to be functional and bright. They also need to
be esthetically good looking and not just a huge projector sticking out in front
of the car.
Original concept was to have driving light and high beam lights as separate
reflectors with turn signal and Day Time Running (DTR) lights utilizing LEDs
with fog lights mounted lower within the bumper.
The modified idea was changed to have 2 sets of projectors. A smaller projector used as auxiliary driving or fog
light and a larger one used as low and hi beam driving light and still have
lights mounted within the bumper area. As the frontal area being fairly short
and trunk cut line raised from originally planed location, overall space from
lens cover to wheel well lining is significantly reduced. Not wanting to alter
much of the overall look of the cut line, in the final version the two projectors had been moved
forward slightly to clear connectors and lining which will be producing slight bump in the
lens while still maintaining safe clearance from the front wheel.
The light buckets are made of 3 separate molds, 1) being main frame which
will be used for mounting of the 2 projectors, DTR lights and turn signal
reflector and a compartment for mounting electronics to control
the lights. 2) a back cover shell to protect bulb connectors plus to make it water
tight or at least prevent water from entering the shell with access panels for
replacing bulbs when they burn out. 3) a trim ring to cover up the projectors
frame which has additional LED mountings.
With low location of the headlights we wanted to have a bright lights to
illuminate front of the road and our option was to use HID projectors to achieve
that. Hence we had decided to use Hella bi-Xenon HID projectors used in Mercedes
Bens for main low/hi beams and smaller Xenon H1 projectors used in Audi TT.
The larger bi-Xenon
are 6.75" from front lens to back of connector on the bulb which is the
depth we needed to work for our headlight buckets.
We had started making first headlight plug just after the front bumper was
pulled from the mold. The process was paused based on suspicion that they was
not going to be enough space for the projectors to clear front wheel and did not
went much beyond base mounting surface for the projectors.
Second version was much of improvement from the first version. However after
making general shape of the headlight housing and carving out openings for the
projectors, it was fount that the opening where cut out either too high or that
the general opening for the housing was to low or that the projectors are to
tall. So rather then fixing the current housing new housing was made and the
opening where cut much lower. This fixed the height of the problem but it
introduced a clearance problem with the bumper where there was no space for
movement on how to adjust the level of the housing level. To fix the problem to
give the housing some thickness on the bottom and provide clearance, there was
no other option other then cutting relive in the bumper which is unfortunate as
the bumper is no longer one continuous piece of fiberglass it will be fixed
later after the headlight housing is finished giving additional wiggle room for
adjustment and providing mounting points for the housings. With all the changes
there is virtually no clearance on the back side of the housing cover and the
wheel well lining will be sitting on the housing it self and the lens it self
will have slight bump to clear the projectors. Last change is to the fenders
them selves. This is not only cause of the lights but also in relevance of then
the plug was made. Assumption was made to use 19" rims for the front and now
that only 18" rims are scheduled and how the curvature was made with addition to
the headlights. They will be lifted by half inch by the light housing trailing
edge and the opening around wheels will be reduced by and inch and arch on top
of the fenders will be reduced close to an inch. The following changes will
should make for much better look to the fender line.
Always on the lookout for more current and up to date lights, always looked at
the idea of having LED lights. There are plenty of OE type LED projectors,
problem with most are that they are not modular where LOW and HIGH modules can
be re-arranged anyway to any particular configuration, secondly most are also
fairly big. Looked at getting focusing lenses and making custom
reflectors/collimators to focus the bean but that would involve a lot of
engineering, time and money. Some models of Ford F150 2015 and newer have
LED projectors have a rectengular shape but always thought they where big size
wise, the one thing that was atractive about them is that the lens has low
profile and what it looks like they are may be assembled of different parts.
Found manufacturer of the actual acrylic lenses in Montreal Quebec and tried
contacting their marketing/engineering department and after about 3 months
finally got a snotty reply from one of the engineers that they had
invested a great amount of money into the research and where not interested in
selling a sample of the lens or work together. So that idea was put on shelf for
some time. Then found an inexpensive recovered set of those modules (lens
with mounting bracket, heatsink and LED) for cheap and figured to get a set as
trial to see what are their dimmensions. After getting the LB surprisingly
they are smaller then the HID projectors so decided to get matching HB.
What it looks like is that they are shallower, they will be wider at least when
comparing the lens but the overall mounting might be even narrower and the
entire headlight bucket will be much lower and making the overall look of the
lights much smaller.
Following are Ford part numbers for the projectors, note that they are different
left to right and Low to High beams
2015-17, W/LED HEADLAMPS TO 08/06/2015, low beam
OEM part number is FL3Z13C626A. Right side
OEM part number is FL3Z13C626C. Left side
2015-17, W/LED HEADLAMPS TO 08/06/2015, high beam
OEM part number is FL3Z13C626B. Right side
OEM part number is FL3Z13C626D. Left Side
FL3Z13K046A cover plate.