Lead Headlight Fabricator Seeking Input - LEDs, Carbon Fiber, the Works!

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Accessories & Modifications' started by jonvo, May 5, 2010.

  1. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    Hi guys,

    My name in Jon and I'm the lead headlight fabricator for XeBrite Engineering. This is a collaborative project with the son of an owner for our local Toyota dealership. The majority of this project is based on the GEN II headlights. We have several "donor headlights" that we're going to work on first.

    As with the recent trend of LEDs, we're going to capitalize on it. This is going to be a custom build; no preassembled LED stripes. After several selections, we decided on a 9000 mcd clear water white LED with a life exceeding 65,000 hours.

    We're also in the works of casting the interior chrome trim and the "LED/jewel" shroud in carbon fiber (2x2 twill with a tow size of 3K).

    For non-HID prius, we're incorporating true bixenon projectors.

    So I come to you all today and humbly ask for your honest opinion. I understand this will be based on individual's subjective view and that's what we're looking for.

    If you also have any other tips/comments/etc, please share.

    Respectfully submitted,

    Jon
     
  2. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    05/09/2010

    Nothing out of the ordinary during the disassembling process.

    [​IMG]
    Headlight lens removed


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    Reflectors removed


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    Chrome bezel and "faux" LED accent removed


    [​IMG]
    Headlight's overall internal components



    05/21/2010

    Here is the current update with regards to the "faux" LED accent.

    [​IMG]
    This is what I meant about filling in the empty slot. Where there was originally a "faux" LED accent, is now covered up and leveled.


    [​IMG]
    This is what I meant about placing LED every other slot.


    [​IMG]
    If you notice carefully, all the shrouds are pointed forward or very close to it. The last thing I want is a crooked LED beam pattern.


    [​IMG]
    Protruding shroud. Aside from aesthetic, the shroud provides adequate "filter" so one LED's ambient light does not clash to an adjacent LED.



    05/23/2010

    As of today, the "faux" LED accent is complete. Below are a few pictures to give you guys an idea of how the completed project may look like.

    [​IMG]

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    I'm starting with the carbon fiber today. Until the resin/hardener is tacky (which will not be until a few more hours) I can then proceed to lay the carbon fiber and reapply more solution.



    05/26/2010

    As promised (though a little later than expected), carbon fiber reflector and projector retrofitted. My schedule will be a little busy the next few days so I will not have time to mount the headlights, wire it up, and aim the headlights.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]





    09/30/2010

    Here is the second revision of our Prius project. This endeavor revolves around the "stocker" look. Enjoy!

    [​IMG]

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  3. car2lvr

    car2lvr Junior Member

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    Incorporate a high end LED's on (not those T1 packages) the turn signal and parking light.
     
  4. 2009Prius

    2009Prius A Wimpy DIYer

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    When I read your post I thought you were going to replace the main head light bulb with LEDs :eek: until I saw this picture from your other post then I understood you are making LED DRLs. ;)
    [​IMG]

    Personally I like the design that squeeze in more LEDs in a give space.

    Do you mind sharing more details on your specific choice of LEDs (make, model number, source etc.) for DIYers here? Thanks!
     
  5. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    T1 LEDs are nice but the majority of them put out no more than 2000mcd. Those that put out higher numbers, are quite big. The ones we're using are between a 3-8mm clear lens LED with up to 9000mcd. Due to the high output, we have to use individual resistor/LED. Heck, I wanted to use the P7 LED but a few people thought it might be overkill :D



    Are you a part of ducati-superbikes or did you do a general keyword? In any case, I'll be more than happy to divulge all steps. It'll be in the second post which I labeled "reserved for updates". This is not going to be your typical "LED bulb" swap but a major fabrication as a whole. Our strive is to make the headlight look as stock as possible without ruining the car's image. Maybe real carbon fiber accents but nothing over the top. I don't think "blinged out" LED and chrome will do the headlight any justice.

    The concept of our design was to replicate the R8 look with the "spaced out" LED design rather than the tight grouping found on the tacky "LED stripes". Since the Prius do not have the curb appeal cruves, outlining the LED on the bottom or doing the LED "eye brow" is a no go.

    What we were thinking of doing is using the existing faux LED accent. Most likely we'll use every other LED spot and use amber LED in the spots not being occupied by the DRL LED and use them as signals. Right now, we're just brainstorming until we have enough input from users on this board.

    Unfortunately we only have one set of "donor" headlights unlike our 3 sets of Ducati headlights :(
     
  6. darelldd

    darelldd Prius is our Gas Guzzler

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    I can't offer any help until I know just what it is you are proposing to do? Replace the headlights with LED? Add to them? Where? Do you have LED experience? What will you use to drive them? Heat sinking?
     
  7. Supreme

    Supreme Hypebeast

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    Please please please ditch the orange reflectors.
     
  8. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    I just got off the phone with one of my NorCal fabricators and we came up a few verbal schematics. The LEDs are going on the "faux LED" accent on the headlights. As with the quote below, we're thinking of removing with the orange reflectors and in turn have it replaced with amber LEDs for signals or just cast the entire reflector and make it flush carbon fiber.

    I'll have to pull the headlights apart and see how the reflector is mounted. Heatsinks are not necessary with this setup. I'm not going to use it inline with any 50w/55w output. I'm going to use banded resistors for individual LEDs so that in the case that I go with the signal AMBER LED route, the resistant load will not offset the computer.

    Overall, the PRIUS' headlight is quite empty so there is a lot of room to play with however, the last thing I want to do is go overboard and have it look like a creation that came out of a rave party.




     
  9. Supreme

    Supreme Hypebeast

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  10. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    how about a drawing of what you were thinking? it's a littler hard to interpret by terms alone....

    i like the idea of trim rings...

    i like rave parties....

    since you're going to overhaul, it's hard to imagine what you have in mind...

    I might be looking into this upgrade later on, if you make it available... my 04 isn't done quite the same as the 06+ models.. as they have the fake LED row above the headlight. Projectors are an awesome idea...

    try to make the whole thing LED.. as it will up the curb appeal of the car. If possible, use LED replacement bulbs as this will allow people to pull the lights out and replace them if anything goes wrong (turn signals, and such)
     
  11. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    btw.. you might want to keep the use of blackish materials down. toyota had to redesign the headlamps and tail lamps for 06 since figures were basically melting in the hot sun causing warpage.
     
  12. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    As others have said, some rough pics, drawins of what you plan on doing. Where the LEDs are gonna go, fabing up a projector (what kind.....TL, FX-R, E55, E46 etc).

    Waiting on the outcome
     
  13. Prius/lexus

    Prius/lexus New Member

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  14. pnyboy27

    pnyboy27 New Member

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    i agree..if you could come out with a drawing..or better yet..a photoshop rendering of what it could look like..im sure ull have a huge support group here. i know id be pretty interested
     
  15. a_gray_prius

    a_gray_prius Rare Non-Old-Blowhard Priuschat Member

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    Subscribed. I would buy if they looked decent enough.
     
  16. kenmce

    kenmce High Voltage Member

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    I am interested in the whole project, but find I am having a little trouble picturing what you currently plan. Will watch this thread with interest.:popcorn:

    Is this meant to be decorative or functional?

    I do have to wonder if a "spider" or "piranha" style superflux LED might give you better mechanical stability, light dispersal, and heatsinking relative to an 8 mm LED? All of the "bullet" style LEDs seem to have fairly narrow outputs. If this is to be usefull it should be easily visible from any angle.

    I am going to guess that you will use a serial/parallel wiring configuration. If this is so, then I would like to suggest you wire the groups so they are scattered rather than all together. This way if a group fails you will only lose say, every fifth dot rather than five that are all next to each other.

    A current regulated power supply would up your initial cost, but would consistently run them all at maximum brightness without overdriving them if your electrics hiccup. Resistors won't do that.
     
  17. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    That's quite unfortunate to hear to say the least. Which parts were/are susceptible to warping? One of our distributor can "recast" UV treated acrylic headlight lens (bad oxidation, etc) or if it's internal, we can cast it in carbon fiber or any other materials people may be interested in. If it's the headlight housing, we'll have to take extra measures to reduce the ambient temperature down ... maybe increase the headlight exhaust vent?




    I'm getting my webmaster to do a rough design of the completed work but it's quite hard to do since we have only one donor headlight to work with and haven't finalize how the project should look like. We know the directions as to what has to be done but I personally feel we should invest more into this as the GENII's headlight has ample room to work with.

    Working with OEM projectors may not work well with this project. For one, limited quantity. For non-HID headlights, we're thinking of using our V2 BPR system. The projector has a built in CCFL HALO system, RGB LED back-lighting (you can change up to 7 colors on the fly), bixenon and is powered by our V3.5 55W HID system. If this is a route we're taking, we're going to lay carbon fiber (2x2 twill at 3k tow) on the reflectors and projectors. Before you knock the carbon fiber headlight plan, take a look at the Koenigsegg Agera's headlight. The carbon fiber looks stealth in my opinion.

    [​IMG]



    This project is intended for both performance and appeal; bias towards performance.

    With those superflex LEDs, they produce just too much light output. Moderation is everything. Heck, my plans were to use the P7 but with years of experience, bright LEDs have a few issues to be considered:

    1. High current draw
    2. Use of resistive heatsinks
    3. Low life expectancy
    4. Flood dispersion

    The LEDs we're using are clear water conical diffracted LEDs producing approximately 9000mcd. These LEDs produce enough ambient light but not so much as to flood the adjacent LEDs. We want the LEDs to be bright but independent. Unlike Audi where each LEDs have their own reflector chambers where they can throw any type of high powered LEDs in without flooding the neighboring LEDs, we have to work around this.

    The "faux" LED accent on the PRIUS headlight only accepts 3mm LEDs. We can try to squeeze a 5mm in there but that will be a very tight squeeze. Secondly, the "faux" LED accent is transparent which means you may notice the wiring in the background. This has to be considered as well.

    You brought up a very interesting point about the parallel installation and the resistive grouping. Even with groupings as low as 5 LEDs in parallel, troubleshooting will be quite tedious especially considering the narrow backing of the "faux" accent to the reflector. Because of this, we have decided to wire up independent banded resistors to each LED. This way you don't have to deal with big resistors, troubleshooting which LEDs is causing the open, etc. Might be more work for us but neither LED will affect each other if one fails. Regarding the regulating power supply, to have a power inverter is overkill for this project since we're not working with anything to strenuous that requires a transformer. A simple relay harness may suffice.

    For the amber reflector, I might outline it with amber LED and turn them into permanent signals and retrofit another projector into the original signal spot ... so it'll be a stacked projector setup. So for two headlights, you'll have a total of 4 low beams and 4 high beams. Performance will be off the charts but may be too much????
     
  18. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    Have you talked with Matt at www.theretrofitsource.com

    They have 1 of the best mass reproduced Bi-Xenon projector on the market right now called the FX-R projector. Quantity is no longer limited :D
     
  19. jonvo

    jonvo New Member

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    Those TSX-R/FX-R/S2K-R are ALL oem projectors. The "R" just signifies a complete retrofit (HID bulbs, ballasts, relay harness, OH- swabs, etc) Matt might've swap out the OEM projector lens with their TRS clear lens. That's my understanding though.
     
  20. sfv41901

    sfv41901 Masta S

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    They make reproduction lenses & the FX projector (soon to be S2K as well).

    In other words a copycat projector. The FX-R is just that....a copy of the org but enhanced for better output. These are brand new projectors made for retro fitting.

    These dont look like the OEM FX Projector
    [​IMG]
     
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