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  #1  
Old 09-28-2010, 09:54 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

I have a lot of other jobs that need to get done, but I really didn't feel like getting into anything too involved this week, so I worked a little on my 01 tail lights that have been setting in boxes for about a month now.

Since the 01's only have 2 bulb sockets & my 96 has 3 bulbs, I either had to convert my 3 to 2 bulbs or come up with a way to use my 3 bulb setup.
I've got an 01 wiring harness, but the plug-ins are different & I didn't want to cut them up just yet, so I decided to do things the hard way & mod the back of the light housings to hold a ton of LED's.

Pics to come....

First I had to remove a small bump on the lower red reflector area (on the back side of the light housing) that seems to serve no purpose other than to make me get rid of it before I can mod these lights.

After it was gone, there was an oval shaped hole about 1/2" diameter that needed to be filled in. I had some quick steel epoxy that seems to work pretty well on just about everything else, so I mixed up a bit & filled in the hole. After about 15 minutes of curing, I sanded down the high spots & leveled it with the surrounding plastic.

I laid out my holes & center punched each one.

I have 55 holes for 5mm LED's drilled in the lower reflector area of one tail light. I was going to use 3mm LED's (and a lot more of them) but I really didn't want to drill 100+ holes on each tail light & I don't think there would be that much more light output.

I've only tested with about 5x 5mm red led's so far, but they really light up the reflector area.

They're basically in an X pattern, something like:

0.0.0.0.0
.0.0.0.0.
0.0.0.0.0

I made a paper template with the spacing I needed for each hole & they all line up except for one that got away from me.

Once I get all the LED's installed in the holes, I need to test fit it on the truck to make sure there aren't any clearance issues... don't think there should be any problems anywhere except close to the mounting flanges.
The LED's are a tight fit in the holes, but I'm probably going to seal the back of them to the light housing with some spray on liquid tape to make sure nothing is exposed to the elements.
I haven't worked on the circuit design/resistor values yet, but I'll leave that for later... I've still got another tail light to drill out first.
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2010, 02:34 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

UPDATE:

As promised... pics in progress...







Now I just have to mod the other one to match this one & get all those LED's installed & wired up.
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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

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  #3  
Old 09-29-2010, 02:44 PM
Clinton Clinton is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Damn!! I want them!!
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  #4  
Old 09-29-2010, 04:15 PM
beef08 beef08 is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

i want that on my 06+
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  #5  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:44 AM
Bwad Bwad is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Wow! That's gonna be JAWesome!
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  #6  
Old 09-30-2010, 11:05 AM
DieHard4rd DieHard4rd is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Quote:
Originally Posted by beef08 View Post
i want that on my 06+
x2.1
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  #7  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:03 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Got the LED's all wired in (on one side anyway)





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  #8  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:04 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Front shots turned off...







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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

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  #9  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:06 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Front shots lit up, dark garage...











They have kind of a zig zag pattern, but I stuffed as many 5mm leds in there as I could.
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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

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  #10  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:12 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Oh, I also got the back side sprayed with a thick coat of spray on liquid tape & it's all pretty sealed up now.

I started working on the other light tonight, but all I was able to do was drilling the 55 holes. Hopefully, this one will go much faster as I have an idea of what the heck I'm doing now.

I wired the led's in series, 5 to a cluster. Each cluster has it's own power & ground wire. All the power wires connect together then to a 14ga wire that I'll tap into the turn signal wires with.
The grounds all get a resistor & then the resistors all tie together with a 14ga wire that taps into the turn signal ground wire.
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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

Need LED's? Send me a PM
LINKS... Click 'em - - -> BUGGMAN PICS - - -BUGGMAN'S YouTube Channel - - -BUGGMAN'S FaceBook
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  #11  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:15 PM
Clinton Clinton is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

awesome dude! i'M IN!
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  #12  
Old 09-30-2010, 10:44 PM
Bwad Bwad is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

What kinda resistance load do you have on the turn signal now?
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  #13  
Old 09-30-2010, 11:03 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

The front turn signals are incandescent yellow bulbs, the tails have 63 led bulbs with my led bar on the roll pan. I'm going to swap the turn signal led bulbs to the brake lights when I get these new tail lights finished. Luckily my 3157 led's are dual illumination (right now I have both leads running to the same connector so they all light up at once) so when I do the swap all I have to do is bend the leads back.

When I first switched to the 63 leds in the tails, I had to get an EP27 electronic flasher to fix the hyper flash.

I think I should be OK with all the led turn signals. I sure hope so, cause I'd like to switch my white/red/white 3rd brake light to an all red one & add some red led's connected to the turn signals too.

I even have LED's in my utility trailer lights.
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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

Need LED's? Send me a PM
LINKS... Click 'em - - -> BUGGMAN PICS - - -BUGGMAN'S YouTube Channel - - -BUGGMAN'S FaceBook
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  #14  
Old 10-01-2010, 09:13 PM
buggman buggman is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Small update...

I now have both lights 95% completed. Got all the led's soldered in the 2nd light today & have everything coated with a couple thick layers of spray on liquid tape.
I've still got to wire in some OEM connectors to the led wires & tap into the wiring on the truck again (and re-re-redo it again). Luckily I have 4 banker's boxes full of wire, connectors & other stuff from an Explorer I stripped, so I think I have a couple waterproof connectors with 2 in 2 out.

Hopefully, I'll get my truck back in the garage before winter so I can get these bad boys installed.

Haven't made up my mind if I want to put the slotted tail light covers on these yet.

I need to mod the bulb holes/slots a little to get my 96 bulb holders to fit better, but it's not a huge deal.

I think my 63 led white reverse bulbs will be even brighter as the 01 tails have a much clearer window than my 96 tails do.
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'96 XLT, 4.0L, 4x4 Auto, Super Cab, K&N Filter, Dual Exhaust, 200a Alt, Clear Corners, BUGGMAN LED's, Expo Power Seats & Console, LED modded '01 Tails

Need LED's? Send me a PM
LINKS... Click 'em - - -> BUGGMAN PICS - - -BUGGMAN'S YouTube Channel - - -BUGGMAN'S FaceBook
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  #15  
Old 10-01-2010, 10:12 PM
DrIftKi7Vg DrIftKi7Vg is offline
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Default Re: Finally started working on 01 tail light LED project

Pictures? I really want to see this. I wanted to do it, but my old tails were messed up and I already bought the LED tails to replace.
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