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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Cosmetic and Lighting Modifications (exterior/interior) > Headlight painting idea...



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      01-06-2013, 01:18 PM   #1
j0ckinjz
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Question Headlight painting idea...

Hey guys, so I'm trying to do some simple mods to my new Sparkling Graphite 330xi and already did a few. I got my blacklines and matte grille ordered. Now I want to do something with my headlights to deal with these ambers.

First off, I have Xenon AHL and do not want to swap them. Replacing the headlights are way out of the question for many reasons...but mostly money and lost of features.

I currently have the tint on the outside of my headlights but think it looks cheap, so I want to open the headlights and do something. Also I don't want to do anything permanent. If I vinyl the amber, I'm worried about getting a ticket for having no orange at all.

SOOOO, I'm thinking about opening it and Plasti-dipping the reflector with the SMOKE plastidip. This way it would act as a tint that I can still peel off later and control how dark to make it. I was also thinking about plastidipping the rest of the headlight black or gunmetal while i had it open.

So does plastidip smoke on inside reflectors sound good?
Should I use plastidip black/gunmetal on the housing while its open?
And... Can I bake open my pre-lci e90 headlights, or should I heatgun it open?

p.s. Call me old school, but I'm also putting in chrome 7507 bulbs to get rid of the orange when not lit.
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      01-07-2013, 09:31 AM   #2
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Not sure if you Cab bake the e90 lights but I used a heat gun on my e92 lights this weekend. It is a bitch doing the mod but with time it turns out good. Not sure about plasti dip and the heat inside the light. Not too fun if the plastic melts inside once assembled. Be careful and take your time.
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      01-07-2013, 12:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0ckinjz View Post
First off, I have Xenon AHL and do not want to swap them. Replacing the headlights are way out of the question for many reasons...but mostly money and lost of features.
Not sure why you think you'd lose features, but you can get a pair of euro-spec adaptive xenons on ebay for about $1000. Then you can resell yours and make a decent amount back.

This would start you off with a clear corner and you can black out the housing and projector shroud. Not sure if I'd be a fan of blacking out the reflector area, if you're worried about a ticket, that might attract more attention than anything else. You can still put in a chrome or LED bulb and basically have no amber.

Lastly, these headlights have to be cut open.
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      01-07-2013, 05:58 PM   #4
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Not really looking to spend $1000 on headlights though. The main reason I want to paint them is to get rid of the orange reflectors and I don't think its serious enough for a $1000 swap. The headlight blackout I was going to do since I would have the headlights open anyway. Idk about using plastidip anymore, it can withstand up to 200 degrees, but the coat goes bad after 6 mo - 1 year.

I definitely want to paint the amber reflector but Idk if I'm going to do the blackout since idk about painting over the housings for the turn signal and DRLs.
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      01-07-2013, 06:06 PM   #5
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You don't need to paint the amber reflector. You can just remove it! This is true for at least the halogens on pre lci
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      01-07-2013, 07:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich123321 View Post
You don't need to paint the amber reflector. You can just remove it! This is true for at least the halogens on pre lci
Just found this diy http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14156 and it looks good removed. Idk if theres any legality issues tho. My e36 had no amber for a while and never had a problem, so I would think so. Thanks for the tip, will most likely go this route.

I also have a heatgun and dremel, so either way, these headlight are getting opened. I will most likely reseal with new sealant, any ideas for what sealant to use? Looking for something straight out of a bottle I can get at home depot.

Idk about blacking out the headlights now. It would be nice and I've been getting a lot of idea by looking at oneighty headlights but im concerned about painted the reflective areas... So I'll have to look into that.
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      01-07-2013, 09:03 PM   #7
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I used clear adhesive silicon from autozone. Worked great.
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      01-08-2013, 03:52 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0ckinjz View Post
Just found this diy http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14156 and it looks good removed. Idk if theres any legality issues tho. My e36 had no amber for a while and never had a problem, so I would think so. Thanks for the tip, will most likely go this route.

I also have a heatgun and dremel, so either way, these headlight are getting opened. I will most likely reseal with new sealant, any ideas for what sealant to use? Looking for something straight out of a bottle I can get at home depot.

Idk about blacking out the headlights now. It would be nice and I've been getting a lot of idea by looking at oneighty headlights but im concerned about painted the reflective areas... So I'll have to look into that.
Definitely no legal issues. LCI cars dont have reflectors right And don't quote me on this but you might need angel eye headlights for the custom LED ones like OSS 180 etc.
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      01-08-2013, 05:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich123321 View Post
Definitely no legal issues. LCI cars dont have reflectors right And don't quote me on this but you might need angel eye headlights for the custom LED ones like OSS 180 etc.
I looked into more and it seems that it is no state regulated law on amber reflectors, and that NY inspection will not fail you for no amber... BUT it does seem to be a DOT rule that you must have an amber reflector on the front sides of your car. LCI cars have the reflector on the fender instead of the headlight.

Since it wont effect inspection I'm not that worried bout it and apparently many cops don't give tickets (or even know about it) for it.

But now I notice that attached to the amber piece is a clear reflector/diffuser for my turn signal, and removing that might make the light look funny since it won't be hitting any glass that will diffuse the light.
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      01-08-2013, 06:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0ckinjz
Quote:
Originally Posted by rich123321 View Post
Definitely no legal issues. LCI cars dont have reflectors right And don't quote me on this but you might need angel eye headlights for the custom LED ones like OSS 180 etc.
I looked into more and it seems that it is no state regulated law on amber reflectors, and that NY inspection will not fail you for no amber... BUT it does seem to be a DOT rule that you must have an amber reflector on the front sides of your car. LCI cars have the reflector on the fender instead of the headlight.

Since it wont effect inspection I'm not that worried bout it and apparently many cops don't give tickets (or even know about it) for it.

But now I notice that attached to the amber piece is a clear reflector/diffuser for my turn signal, and removing that might make the light look funny since it won't be hitting any glass that will diffuse the light.
Yup I believe it's right in the gap between the 2 "tentacles" (wtf do you call it!?) of the sidemarker. You should be fine. I don't have any amber now when I get my new lci halogen lights put on though...
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      01-08-2013, 07:08 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rich123321 View Post
Yup I believe it's right in the gap between the 2 "tentacles" (wtf do you call it!?) of the sidemarker. You should be fine. I don't have any amber now when I get my new lci halogen lights put on though...
Yea, so I don't think I'm going to paint the lights... I don't really feel like adding to this project since it already seems like a difficult one.

I just have to decide between pulling the lens out, or covering it with maybe a anthracite CF vinyl to make it look a bit like a reflector... like in this post: http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...21&postcount=1 which I think actually looks really good. I also have to decide if it's even worth all the trouble.

EDIT: So after looking into it a bit, if I decide to open the headlights, I definitely want to go the vinyl wrap path. I just need to decide if I should go with a silver CF wrap and make it look like euro reflectors, or go with a black CF and make it look more of a black out look.
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      01-08-2013, 11:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0ckinjz
Quote:
Originally Posted by rich123321 View Post
Yup I believe it's right in the gap between the 2 "tentacles" (wtf do you call it!?) of the sidemarker. You should be fine. I don't have any amber now when I get my new lci halogen lights put on though...
Yea, so I don't think I'm going to paint the lights... I don't really feel like adding to this project since it already seems like a difficult one.

I just have to decide between pulling the lens out, or covering it with maybe a anthracite CF vinyl to make it look a bit like a reflector... like in this post: http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...21&postcount=1 which I think actually looks really good. I also have to decide if it's even worth all the trouble.

EDIT: So after looking into it a bit, if I decide to open the headlights, I definitely want to go the vinyl wrap path. I just need to decide if I should go with a silver CF wrap and make it look like euro reflectors, or go with a black CF and make it look more of a black out look.
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      07-24-2013, 09:15 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j0ckinjz View Post
Yea, so I don't think I'm going to paint the lights... I don't really feel like adding to this project since it already seems like a difficult one.

I just have to decide between pulling the lens out, or covering it with maybe a anthracite CF vinyl to make it look a bit like a reflector... like in this post: http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...21&postcount=1 which I think actually looks really good. I also have to decide if it's even worth all the trouble.

EDIT: So after looking into it a bit, if I decide to open the headlights, I definitely want to go the vinyl wrap path. I just need to decide if I should go with a silver CF wrap and make it look like euro reflectors, or go with a black CF and make it look more of a black out look.
Silver! Thanks for this thread btw. I'm going to do this in a couple weeks.
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      07-26-2013, 11:05 PM   #14
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You should paint or remove the reflector and update the angel eyes with some Umniztas. I personally don't think that the vinyl wrap looks good on the outside of the car. It doesn't fit well in my opinion.

BTW you can bake the e90 lights. Using a heat gun is a bitch and takes forever. You also need to be sure to get rid of all the old sealant and replace it with some high quality sealant, I recommend Koito Butyl Sealant.

Also, if you decide to let someone else do it for you, I recommend Lightwerkz out in Oakland, NJ. Not sure where in NY you are but its only 30mins from the NY border.
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