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drchip 07-12-2011 02:14 PM

Halogen conversion dim
Anyone got any good answers for dim halogen headlight conversion in my 35 ford tudor? I have new reflectors and new lenses and cant see 20 ft at night. There isnt really a line of light to try to aim - it just seems like the lens diffuses the light in all directions. The amber turn signals in them show great but I was stunned how bad this conversion is to illuminate the road.

JohnTN 07-12-2011 05:25 PM

Is this a conversion where you replaced the socket in the headlight assembly with a socket that will accept the H4 bulb?

I did this in a 1939 Olds and kept the original reflectors and lens. Like you said, the light goes everywhere except down the road. I think it is because the bulb is not positioned exactly where it needs to be for the lenses to focus the light correctly down the road. The bulb might need to be slightly more forward or backward in position relative to the lense.

I think the best bet is to replace the whole headlight assembly with a complete new assembly - the light should be focused with the new reflector, bulb, and lense.

I haven't replaced mine. The headlights light up the road fairly well on hi-beam without blinding oncoming traffic. But low beams are useless except for allowing oncoming traffic to see me.

drchip 07-12-2011 06:23 PM

I dont know the manufacturer but I purchased these from Midwest Early Ford. It is a quartzhalogen reflector kit with sockets installed #48-13027-qkts. I dont know what the bulb # was. The lens is 48-13060. Dont know if this helps. I do know it was a real pita to get everything assembled.

pepi 07-12-2011 08:31 PM

The lens may very well be the problem, if the light is yellow you have an electrical problem that can be solved with a relay. I believe I found the conversion you have used;

Those kits are reflectors and bulbs only.

It maybe to late for this information but I will pass it along anyway. The following is a great simple conversion that will give you knock out headlights, the only down side for you as I see it, is no turn signals you will need to mount them separate. The bulbs a 7 in round, real glass cut lens, the brand speaks for itself.

Joe G 07-12-2011 08:35 PM


Originally Posted by drchip
I dont know the manufacturer but I purchased these from Midwest Early Ford. It is a quartzhalogen reflector kit with sockets installed #48-13027-qkts...

That's a Bob Drake part.

Did the reflectors on the kit you installed have a horizontal step in them, or were they just a continuous curve from top to bottom?

I just installed a set of Bob Drake Commercial-Style (w/ halogen bulb) headlights, and they came with a special stepped reflector to correctly focus the #9003 (H4) bulbs. The downside of the new reflectors is they have no provision for park/turn signal bulbs. But at least the headlights work. I realize that a '32 Commercial and a standard '35 light are different, but I would bet that with regards to the halogen conversion, they have the same disease.

If you have the old-style reflectors without the step in them, and you purchased them recently, I would call Bob Drake and give them a ration of s**t. Maybe if you're lucky, they'll send you a set of new updated reflectors without having to buy another whole kit.

Good luck...Hope this helps... :thumbup:

drchip 07-13-2011 08:37 AM

Mine have no step. I have read that the new Drake reflectors are very poor quality.??? I guess my only option is to try them cause their not worth a crap the way they are. Its not just the expense that annoys me but I dread taking them apart and reassembling them.

unix 07-13-2011 08:52 AM

What is the size of the head lights?

drchip 07-13-2011 02:25 PM

I took some pics but have to wait for the wife to get home to post them cause I'm a dummy with this stuff.

drchip 07-13-2011 03:47 PM

OK - dont know how informative these are - hard to get it to show good

Joe G 07-13-2011 06:00 PM

Are you sure you have that assembled correctly? The halogen light conversion kits I have dealt with all had the bulb inserted into the reflector from the rear.

Just for reference, here is a picture of the Drake '32 light light I was talking about....

coupe66 07-14-2011 12:59 AM

Yes, headlight-bulbs always goes in from behind.


drchip 07-14-2011 08:22 PM

Not installed right. Put it in from back and big improvement . Its official - I've now done everything on this project at least twice. Thanks guys

pepi 07-14-2011 08:50 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Well those lights are dimm and yellow. Are the turn signals bright normal looking brightness? Is the wiring original, how about the light switch ? If your answer is yes to these then you need to install a relay for the head lights. My flash lite is brighter then those.

Hella H-4

Harley turn signals


coupe66 07-15-2011 02:31 AM

Thats right, switches are not supposed to carry big loads... they wont last long then. But with a small relay (30Amp) it will work like a dream. Just look at the "Ford relay" for the starter motor, it will carry hundreds of Amps. Imagine that you only mounted a small switch to engage the starter, it would burn like a torch...

So the relay will take the heavy Amp. load away from the switch. Some heavy Amp. users are for example: Headlights, pumps, and electrical fans.

Here is a nice schematic over dual headlights:

And to know what cable size to use, you gotta know the - Amp/watts the unit will take to function, and the length of the cable. Here is a wire gauge table at the bottom of the page to help you with that:


drchip 07-15-2011 05:02 AM

I have a relay for the high beam and another for the low beam mounted next to the radiator, all new wiring (Kwickwire kit and M.A.D. electrical), and new headlight switch. I was careful to provide good grounds. Lights look much better in the garage, will try to get out for a road test this weekend. I dont know what the bulb number is - came with the kit. But apparently they are not H4, so if they are still dim I'll switch bulbs.

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