Author Topic: Guide..How to paint your headlights  (Read 13522 times)

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Offline neeldub

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Guide..How to paint your headlights
« on: May 12, 2007, 02:00:28 AM »
As most of you will know, i recently painted my headlights to the colour code of my MZ3 sunlight silver... if you havent seen it.. well here is a comparison..

Before:


After:




The complete painting process took me approximately 2 weeks, from the primering, painting and laquering.

Items needed..
1. Headlight panels.. (You have to bake open your headlights to do so. you can also install angel eyes at the same time, which is what i did)
2. Custom mixed paint in spray can only...
3. Fine wet and dry sandpaper P1200 or above...
4. Clear laquer in spray can only...


For baking open you headlights, please refer to this thread...

Not an expert by any means's. But I have helped install four sets of Halo's in the headlights of both Hatch and Sedan . We have always used the Oven method.
You get an even heat and if done correctly you have no chance to melt your lights. Remove all the bulbs and any rubber seals that may be on the housing.
200 degrees for 17 minutes should give you a almost too hot to handle light assembly.I left my Eyelids on and they didnt suffer any ill effects for the heating. Start on the sharp end and slowly pull the light apart. One end is slipped in and you must start on the other end. Make sure that you are pulling on the proper end if you start on the wrong end no amount of pulling will help.
You may have to lift the clips as you go and have some one handy to help with cutting the glue as you pull them apart.
 
You must work quickly because the light will start to cool.
Once apart you can do whatever you need to do in the headlight. Then when ready you can simple press the assembly back together and reheat for a few minutes then simply make sure all the clips are reseated. If all goes well after the glue cools you should have a water tight headlight assembly. Out of the 4 I have helped do only one has had any problem with fogging and that was the first one we did. So we have learned a few things since then I guess . I know most of this has been gone over in this thread but I thought maybe I could add something to the discussion............................................. Clue
PS dont touch the Projector you will seal in your finger prints and every time you turn on the lights you will see them. If you do just use a clean microfiber towel and some rubbing alcohol to clean the surface.

I hope kevin doesnt mind me taking his quote...  :? :? sorry in advance..  :)

ok headlight baking was the 1st step... remove the chrome shrouds by carefully popping off the tabs at the back. Be extra careful as the tabs can break easily if popped with sufficent force.

2. Prepare the panels for primer application..

this step is important as it helps the primer to stick to the surface properly.

using the fine sandpaper with some water, smoothen the surface of the panel.. making sure that you dont leave a deep scratch on the surface. By using the water, it can help achieve a clean, smooth professional finish. try and rub the sandpaper everywhere on the panel, or where ever your fingers can reach..

Once smoothing is done.. the panel should look like this..





3. Primer application

I used white primer on this ocassion, but i'm sure you can use other colour primers depending on the colour of you car. For light colours use white primer, for any other darker colours use black/yellow primer.



Spray the primer throuroughly accross the panel, making sure that you dont miss out around the corners and the inside bits that get hidden.

once primered, the panel will look like this..





Allow the primer to dry for 2-3 days, then sand the 1st layer down with the p1200 sandpaper again. you can use water again if you wish to, but make sure that the surface is dry before applying the 2nd coat of primer. Once 2nd layer is done, allow a further 2-3 days before painting.

5. Applying paint

Before painting, sand down the 2nd layer of primer as described above.. this helps the paint stick to the primer properly.

Here is my custom mixed paint...



Spray the paint across the panel making sure that you can reach the hidden parts. Spray enough as long as the paint gets everywhere. But dont paint from too close.

If possible wear a mask as the smell from the paint can be hazardous and irritating.

Allow 24-48 hrs for the paint to dry.. once painted.. the panel will look like this..




Make sure that the painting environment is clean and not too windy.

6. Applying Lacquer.. no pics.. sorry

same rule as painting.. dont spray from too close, make sure lacquer reaches every where. Allow the laquer to dry for at least 1 whole week before installing or putting the shrouds back on..

End result:

















Comparison.. Black vs Colour coded



Enjoy
2008 Mazda 3 Sport Saloon 1.6
Veba Freeview TV box, Rear view camera, Front View Camera
Colour Coded Headlights, Angel Eyes, MPS Aero Wing Mirrors

Offline Willpower

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2007, 02:26:10 AM »
Well done Neel You are "The Man"   O0
Look at life through the windscreen, not the rearview mirror.
2004 Winning Blue 2Ltr Sport Saloon.  Laser Blue Main beams.

Offline daiking

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2007, 11:26:04 AM »
OMFG!

Did you mod a second pair of headlights or did you do this to the pair your had?

How did you go about resealing them?

Offline neeldub

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2007, 11:53:13 AM »
OMFG!

Did you mod a second pair of headlights or did you do this to the pair your had?

How did you go about resealing them?

yep i modded a 2nd pair of headlights i bought on ebay. i resealed it using the same glue which it had on it. Just have to warm it up again, then becomes easy to press back together.  :)
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Offline daiking

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2007, 12:03:09 PM »
yep i modded a 2nd pair of headlights i bought on ebay. i resealed it using the same glue which it had on it. Just have to warm it up again, then becomes easy to press back together.  :)

I've looked at the first pictures again, I see that the part you paint has no glue on it. No problems with condensation?

Mucho respect.

Offline neeldub

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2007, 12:36:24 PM »
yep i modded a 2nd pair of headlights i bought on ebay. i resealed it using the same glue which it had on it. Just have to warm it up again, then becomes easy to press back together.  :)

I've looked at the first pictures again, I see that the part you paint has no glue on it. No problems with condensation?

Mucho respect.

well i only noticed condensation once after goping thru a car wash.. and not since.. but i will take them off after my exams and add some more silicon glue to it..
2008 Mazda 3 Sport Saloon 1.6
Veba Freeview TV box, Rear view camera, Front View Camera
Colour Coded Headlights, Angel Eyes, MPS Aero Wing Mirrors

Offline Xorro

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2008, 09:17:50 AM »
Pity there isn't a way of getting rid of the orange reflectors in the headlights...

You took your car through a car wash :o as a member of Detailing World, all I can say is "Nooooooo!" lol

Offline Willpower

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2008, 10:21:26 AM »
If you follow the method as detailed above, once you have removed the reflector for painting,  you can omit to replace it on reconstruction. It is not a legal requirement for it to be in there.
Look at life through the windscreen, not the rearview mirror.
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Offline Ma77y

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2008, 12:16:02 PM »
Pity there isn't a way of getting rid of the orange reflectors in the headlights...


  Just paint the reflectors the same colour as the car!  shouldnt be to hard i guess
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Offline Xorro

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2008, 05:32:08 PM »
It is not a legal requirement for it to be in there.

Aha, thanks. I wasn't sure whether it was a requirement or not.

Offline darren

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2009, 07:02:10 PM »
well  done neel , came  out well didnt they.i wont be doing it though on two counts ....

1)i made the blue peter gang look like rocket engineers due to my  lack of patience & skill etc &
2)if i start taking the new car apart my mrs is  gonna hit the roof .You might think thats a bit poofy but i cant cook,wash or iron too  well either  :-\   

Offline Ben_MPS

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2009, 09:16:13 PM »
well done Neel! they look the shizzle!!!

I also wouldn't do it for 2 reasons...

1. I'm ****** at that stuff.
2. My car is black!!!  ;D  ;D

Offline hotcarstuff

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2009, 02:34:50 PM »
that is one ballsy mod. it looks subtle yet effective. like a lot but wont be doing it for myself i would defy fYck it up.

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Re: Guide..How to paint your headlights
« Reply #12 on: June 29, 2009, 02:34:50 PM »