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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As you people know the output on our stock lighting is piss poor. It's almost worse than that of my Trans Am (when the lights were stock). Also, we know most projectors for our ZJ's are crap. So, I decided to make something myself. Aesthetically I'm not a huge fan of this setup, but they are BRIGHT and exactly what I wanted in terms of output. I'm working on a new version which will incorporate nearly stock looking housings, with a projector. The quality of them will be on par with this.

Here's my ZJ:


Just a taste of what's to come. These are 2 of the 4 projectors I have now. The left one is an FX-R 1.1 projector, the right one is a Morimoto MH1 projector w/ shroud. Two are going on the Trans Am, 2 on the Jeep:



And here is my Lexan/Polycarbonate - new lenses:




A few photo updates from the weekend. I took a bunch more but don't have time to post 'em. The retro is finished, I'm just waiting on the silicone to cure. Should have the housings back in the Jeep today/tonight.









I still need to dremel and do some other stuff but I think it looks great and the output is insane. Cost varies on the projectors used. $120-$500 depending on misc. parts and the projectors. I was going to use FX-R' 1.1's that I have but didn't have the right HID kit for them, so I just went ahead with the MH1's. I'm very happy. I may make another set with better projectors soon and sell these ones. I'm always trying to one up myself with headlights.

Crappy cell photos:









Rotation needs to be adjusted, but thankfully all I have to do is pull the housings off the Jeep to accomplish this. May even be able to do it in the Jeep if I remove the battery on the one side:




Above cutoff:


Below cutoff:


Low beam (FAR more impressive in person):


High beam (FAR more impressive in person):


Sealing issue I will address shortly as well:




Here are some quick snap shots I took a few months ago. All photos were on the same settings: Nikon D2x, Tamron 17-50, 1/13th second, f/2.8, ISO 400, handheld:













 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·


Latest shot (needs some clear still):
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
THEN... I crashed into a tree in the road!

My g/f, myself, my buddy and his g/f decided to take our Jeeps up to north Jersey. There's a sick waterfall and some good hiking (even in snow) so we ventured up there today. Here's our trip in photos...

Lower MontCo:


611 north of Doylestown, PA:


611 near the 29 split in PA:


Middle of nowhere Northwest Jersey:






Clearing one of the hundreds of trees that fell over the road:




Then, about 45 minutes later we're cruising along at 10-15 MPH on a downhill. All of a sudden I see a huge white puff/cloud off in the woods. Then, a second later I see this tree fall across the road. I hit the brakes as I saw it start to come down. Unfortunately it landed about 10 feet in front of us. Nothing I could do. I thought to myself that I needed to avoid the trunk of the tree, and hit the upper branches if I am going to hit anything. So that's what I did. We made it through the tree and I started to turn back toward my side of the road. Just as I thought everything was fine, I hear a THUD... The Jeep stopped. I open my door to see my rear, driver side tire about 4 feet off the ground, over a small stream bed. Great!






Got out to check the damage. Didn't look horrible. The Jeep was resting on the hitch on the rear. Gas tank was not touched. We had some great help from the locals who provided a couple thick boards for the rear tire to "ramp" up as my buddy pulled me out in his MJ (Comanchee). Drenched and cold, we decided to cut our losses and head home. Easy, right? Not really... This was I80 East, just west of Route 206 where dozens of trucks were stuck on the incline, in almost every lane. Crazy:


Route 206 was even worse. Power was out and large trees covered 3/4 of the roadway every 1/2 mile or less, nearly the entire drive on 206 from 80 to 202. I'm a huge fan of driving in inclement weather, but this was one for the books. I've never seen so much devastation from wet snow on trees before. It was quite an experience....

Damage report:
-Passenger side headlight
-Passenger side fender
-Hood
-Cat, muffler, tailpipe
-Antenna
-Etc.. $2500 damage estimate

Not too bad for driving through a tree!
 

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-Etc.. $2500 damage estimate
How do you figure this? New? None of those parts is more then a few hundred $$ at a pick and pull lot. Bring your tools and strip what you need.

You might as well just buy another ZJ for 2500. Or buy two beaters and part them out. Dime a dozen.

I love the lights though. You should do a night shot along a dark stretch of straight highway, that's the best way to show light performance, short of before and after shots.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How do you figure this? New? None of those parts is more then a few hundred $$ at a pick and pull lot. Bring your tools and strip what you need.

You might as well just buy another ZJ for 2500. Or buy two beaters and part them out. Dime a dozen.

I love the lights though. You should do a night shot along a dark stretch of straight highway, that's the best way to show light performance, short of before and after shots.
The repair estimate was $2450 from the auto body shop. That's without tax as well as it was in Delaware. I fixed it myself, though, for $65 of parts at a salvage yard.

I'll grab shots of my new setup that I am working on.



how much would you sell a package deal with hids head light housing and everything you need???
I have a TON of people asking this. I'm going to put together pricing on a kit and post it up.
 

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Looks like a good excuse to get real front bumper!
 

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Don't know how I missed this thread last month. Those lights are awesome. I have always been pissed at how horrible the stock ZJ lights are. I have always just wanted to add aux lights, but this may be a better route.

Sorry to see the accident, at least everyone was OK.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The Jeep is fully fixed, so no worries - thanks guys!

Teaser of my new design :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Is it just a cheap plastic housing without a proper cut-off?
lol I don't do ricer lights, no. I'm a lighting whore. It's a Morimoto MH1 v.4.1 projector, the Gatling 2.0 shroud and a factory housing. Still debating what to do for the lens this go around. Playing that by ear.

My options at the moment...

-Test factory diffused lens to see if the light pattern is bad
-Buff out the diffusion on the lens in a rounded pattern until it is clear (Test output pattern)
-Find new lenses that are clear
-Just use Lexan like I did for the first set, only don't paint it
-Something else...

Cutoff will be like this:
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Here's a crappy cell shot of the one light installed. Other should be installed later tonight or Sunday if I get time:
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Latest shot, just moment ago:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Finally put the cell phone down and took out my DSLR. Here are some good shots of the retro I took today:

As you can see they are dirty and still need some sanding to get the ends perfectly flat:


More shots:














 

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Retrofit looks good. Like the second iteration better. Progression is good!

Only question is why you didn't pick up a set of the aftermarket ZJ housings with the clear lense then retro those? The fitment would match the rest of the lights, and would have made for a slightly nicer final product. Yours are still very nice, just wondering. I did a retro on my ZJ years ago, and I used the smoked aftermarket ones.
 

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Looks good. Similar what I had in my ZJ -- until it got written off. Think keeping the chrome inside the housings looks better. What I ended up doing is using my original housings with the fronts of the aftermarkets. The aftermarket housings angle up too much for the projectors and shrouds to fit. Worked really well in the end.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'm just leaving work but will answer questions and post some videos later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Video here:

And to answer questions:

The tires were the same size 30x9.50" front/rear.

The reason for the custom housings is that it's FAR easier to separate the factory housings than it is an aftermarket housing. I won't get into it, but it's not fun though would definitely look 24895238949 times better I'm sure.
 
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