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Thread: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

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    BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    I've finally completed the retro fit (after a month or so) and I can say that I'm greatly impressed! It wasn't very difficult, just time consuming and with my setup; I've managed to have independent fog lights as well. I will explain further.

    Disclaimer: Blah blah.. your fault.. blah blah.. I'm not responsible for anything you do.. blah blah.. and blah!

    • Cost
    • Literature
    • Part 1: Headlight Disassembly
    • Part 2: Projector Disassembly
    • Part 3: E39 Projector Assembly
    • Part 4: Harness
    • Part 5: Aiming
    • Part 6: Headlight Reassembly

    DO NOT USE ANY CLEANING SOLVENTS ON THE REFLECTIVE PART OF YOUR PROJECTOR! IT WILL COME OFF!! If you need to clean it, use a dry microfiber cloth!!

    Cost:
    JDM Headlights RHD - $100 + $95 shipping USD (Sourced: Ebay)
    E39 Projectors LHD w/bulb holders - $85 + $25 shipping USD (Sourced: Ebay)
    Philips 85122 4300K D2S Bulbs - matched - $75/pair CAN (Sourced: local guy, found on http://www.hidplanet.com/forums )
    Hella Gen 3 OEM BMW Ballasts (came with relay) - matched/used - $160/pair CAN (Sourced: local guy, found on http://www.hidplanet.com/forums )
    Miscellaeneous parts (12 AWG wire, crimper, heat shrink, fuses, automotive wrap, etc) - $50 CAN (Sourced: Sayal Electronics - http://www.sayal.com/ )


    Literature: Before you attempt this; please educate yourself and understand how everything works BEFORE you do this. Make diagrams, make templates out of cardboard, draw everything out, check then double check. This is not difficult to accomplish but that's only if you understand how everything works. I will explain to the best of my ability the differences between halogen and xenon, how the relay functions, what the ballasts do, igniters, amperage, bulb colour temperatures, lumens, etc.

    Halogen (left): Halogen bulbs use a filament that glows when current is passed through it. The higher the wattage (typically 55watts), the brighter the filament glows. Wattage is amount of power, but wattage doesn't produce the amount of light output in a HID (xenon) setup.

    Xenon (right): Xenon is a gas that is inside a tiny bubble in the capsule. Current is passed through this bubble and the gas ignites. HID ballasts only consume 35 watts but produce three times the amount of light output. The light output is measured in a term called lumens.


    Image property of Daniel Stern Lighting

    Lumens: Lumens is how much usable light is produced. A halogen bulb at 55watts produces about 800 lumens with a colour temperature of 3200k. A xenon bulb with a colour temperature of 4300k produces about 3200 lumens of usable light at 35watts.

    Colour Temperature: Is used to measure the colour of light in a spectrum. The scale is called a Kelvin Scale. The higher up you go on the Kelvin Scale, the less usable light is emitted. Halogen bulbs have a very yellowish tint to them, much like a candle light. 5000k is the purest white, very similar to when the sun is at high noon. 8000k has more of a blueish/purple tinge to it but the usable light is reduced to about 2400 lumens. A black light has a colour temperature of 12,000k. It's very purple but has hardly ANY usable light. All OEM BMW, Audi, Merc-Benz; all use nothing higher than a 4300K bulb. Every OEM bulb is an Osram or Philips bulb as they are the most reliable and guaranteed to produce the most usable light.

    Ballasts: Ballasts are used to ignite the xenon gas inside the capsule. Much like the ballasts required to ignite the gas inside of a fluorescent tube; same concept. There is a much needed igniter but with the D2S base bulb; the igniter isn't attached to the base like a D1S bulb. The Hella Gen 3 ballasts are the most reliable and are used in most OEM applications. These ballasts are generally water resistant (not proof), shock resistant, polarity protected and surge protected. It will be very difficult to blow one of these ballasts. Most retro-fitters prefer the Gen 3 ballasts over any other ballasts. There is a Gen 4 ballast but the igniter is external rather than internal like it's predecessor

    Bases & Bulb Types: HID bulbs come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. It can get confusing really quickly which will fit which application. Newer vehicles have adapted the prominent D2S bulb (only for projection) while reflector type housing make use of the D2R bulb (Older Acura TL, Infiniti G35 Sedan). The '2' designates that this base does not have an igniter attached to the base like the D1S & D1R does. The difference between the R and S is only a sticker that reduces glare when a HID bulb is used in a reflection type housing.





    More literature can be found here: http://www.intellexual.net/hid.html

    Part 1: Headlight Disassembly
    Remove the 3 pieces of metal that hold the headlight together. Also remove the 2 on the bottom, there is a total of 5. Remove both screws that are near the turn signal bulb. Remove all bulbs and wires from their sockets, this includes the socket covers as well. Basically remove as much as you can from the headlight.

    A lot of people are scared of 'baking' a headlight. I'll be honest; I was too. Once you do it the first time, you wonder why you were ever worried. You'll have to bake the headlight twice (top and bottom) and make sure you have some fitted rubber gloves. Oven mitts won't do!

    Place the oven tray in the middle position. Pre-heat the oven to 350°F. Cut a piece of cardboard that will fit inside the oven on top of the oven tray. Place a piece of wax paper on top of the cardboard and finally place your headlight on top. Once the oven is pre-heated to 350°F, TURN IT OFF!!. Put the headlight inside the oven with the cardboard and wax paper as described. Wait 7 - 10 min. Do not worry if you open the oven and there's a lot of smoke coming out.. that is just the wax paper + cardboard. The projector lens will also build a lot of condensation, this is normal!

    Carefully remove the headlight using the cardboard as a carrying tray and pre-heat the oven to 350°F again. I put it on the kitchen's tiled floor and carefully inserted a FLAT screw driver on the top seam of the headlight and pried it open. Once I had a little bit open on the top, I no longer needed the screw driver and could easily pull it apart with my hands. Once the top part is separated, flip the headlight and lay it on the cardboard tray bottom side up. Once your oven has pre-heated itself to 350°F, TURN IT OFF!! and place the headlight inside for 5 minutes.

    Now do the same with the bottom. Once the headlight is separated, you'll see nasty glue everywhere. To make it neat I took my heat gun and melted all the excess glue, peeled it off and inserted it into the 'channeled' side of the headlight (The back half I believe.) This makes it easier to put it together as well.

    Remove the 4 screws that hold the reflector part onto the lens. If the reflector piece doesn't come out; it's because there is glue in the way.. be careful. This part was a little tricky but with patience it comes out. You can sand/paint this part black if you want the blacked out look or keep it stock. Remove the turn signal amber cover if you wish as well. I did.

    Part 2: Projector Disassembly
    Get yourself a 1/4" ratchet with an 8mm socket. Start turning those aiming screws! The projector is attached to the housing by the aiming screws and a pivot ball in the bottom corner. When you start unscrewing the aiming screws; you'll see the two PHILIPS screws that attach the projector onto the pivot ball from behind the projector. Once the projector is aimed to it's full extension horizontally/vertically, you can easily insert a screw driver to unscrew those two screws. With the two screws undone, the projector falls out.

    There's two screws holding the shroud on, remove those. The shroud comes apart, so does the lens. makes a cool paper weight! Un-clip the two clips that hold the aiming screws together. That's all.

    Part 3: E39 Projector Assembly
    This is where you need to get creative. I can't really tell you how to do this, you'll need to use your own fabrication skills as everyone's vary. Who knows, maybe you'll make it even better than mine! I can get you started though.. take a dremel and cut the tube part (along the dotted green lines in the first picture.) This will remove the main part of the projector unit and will leave you with the base/mounting plate. Once it was separated, I had to oval out the hole so the E39 projector would fit inside. My goal was to mate the E39 projector as close as possible to the base/mounting plate or else the projector would stick out from the reflector housing (held on by the 4 screws, kind of tricky to take off). The problem here is; if it sticks out too much, you won't be able to aim it fully as it will hit the sides. The JDM projector sits BEHIND the reflector housing whereas this one sits almost flush. If I could have taken more time and gotten more creative, I could have mated it even closer so the projector would sit behind and have full adjustability.

    Even with the E39 projector sitting flush.. I can adjust it to DOT specs without a problem. Another option is to take a dremel sander and sand the edges down to widen the reflector housing's hole. Another thing I had to do was; I had to trim one corner of the lower adjustment clip because the E39 projector screw was in the way. See image 4 for reference picture. Other then that, look at below pictures for an idea of an overall picture of what I did.


















    Part 4: Harness



    Makes sense? If it doesn't.. I'd be scared. Just kidding! My car has DRL.. which is a pain in the ass! Even with the DRL module disconnected; the power common wire still goes hot once the e-brake is put down. I tried a few methods before I found one that worked the way I wanted to. I tried connecting 85 on the relay to the low beam ground on the 9007 socket. Ok, so it worked with the multi-switch (beside steering wheel, turn signal lever) but if I ever used my high beams or flashed someone; the HIDs would shut off. This is no good as a constant on/off in a short period of time can severely injure your ballast. HIDs require a good 30 second start up time.

    The other method I tried was ground 85 straight to the chassis without the switch as shown in my diagram. This worked independently from the highs, but since I have DRL and the power common going hot once the e-brake was down regardless where the low/high beam selector was; the HIDs would go on. I don't want to be driving around in the day with my HIDs on.

    The last method worked best for me. I took the ground wire from 85, connected it to a switch (see pics below) and grounded it behind the dash (see pics below) and voila! Now my HIDs worked independently of everything! Switch on, and they turn on because the circuit completed the ground and the power common always being hot. If I flashed my high beams, it wouldn't matter anymore as they are no longer connected to the switched ground like my first tried method. Another benefit to this is, my fogs stay on when the multi-switch is set to low beam and with my HID switch off, only the fogs and parking lights are illuminated.




    I mounted the relay on the driver side inside the fender. It was wedged inside the corner and with the headlight in place, it's not moving anywhere. It's easily accessible, out of the way and completely water proof.



    I used the smallest spade connectors available to avoid splicing my original factory wiring. I inserted them into my 9007 socket and once everything was installed, I tucked them underneath the headlight away from water.




    The ballasts were mounted underneath the headlight, inside the bumper. I only mounted them with some heavy duty zip ties. The ballast is suspended in the air, but is very tight. This allows for some shock absorption and doesn't hit against the walls of my car. I grounded it to the 4th headlight bolt that is no longer used with the JDM projector headlights. The inline 15 AMP fuse is sitting below the ballast.



    Main 30 AMP fuse off the battery



    Most of the wires are on the driver side but I had to run one wire to the passenger side ballast. I ran this wire underneath the rad support, inside automotive wrap. I zipped tied it to the support where I could find a spot. This makes for a clean, wireless look.

    Part 5: Aiming
    Once your harness is made and your E39 projector is assembled, you're ready to aim the lights. Put them together and mount them as you would.

    Vertical Aiming: Find a fairly flat ground with a wall. Measure the distance from the top of your headlight to the ground. Now, measure that same distance on the wall, mark it with tape. Move your car 25' back from the wall and turn your HIDs on. Measure between 2.1" - 2.5" below your mark that you made earlier and mark your new measurement. Adjust your aim so the cutoff now meets the new mark. DOT specs say your HID cut off should drop 2.1" - 2.5" every 25'.

    Horizontal Aiming: Horizontal aiming is easier. Aim your headlights horizontally so they don't cross between each other. To do this, drive up to the wall.. then slowly drive back. If you see the centre cut off start to wander towards the other beam, adjust it so they don't wander.




    Part 6: Headlight Reassembly
    Screw your reflector housing back onto the lens. Remember to remove any excess glue and put it on the channeled side of the headlight. I did not put the headlight back in the oven because I was too concerned with condensation on the new lens. I took my heat gun and melted the glue a lot so I would have time to seal it back together. I started at the top and once I pressed the front and back together, I used very strong clamps to keep them mated. I worked my way around the headlight and it sealed very good this way.

    It has rained a lot and no water has gotten inside. That about sums about a retro-fit. If you're unsure about anything, please ask and I will clairfy further to the best of my ability. Please read and read and read some more to understand how everything works. You don't want to fry something or ruin your ballasts!

    Good luck!
    JD - 2005 Legacy GT LTD Wagon 5spd
    jay-d.com

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    t3h ch33se Wiscon_Mark's Avatar
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    An excellent writeup! You are a god

    If I can get my hands on some HID projectors, I'll be doing this for sure.
    ~Mark [SLi Admin]
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    Thanks Mark,

    You can find a lot of stuff on www.hidplanet.com/forums.. there's a lot of people selling a lot of stuff for cheap. I'd recommend anyone who wants to do this to get on that forum
    JD - 2005 Legacy GT LTD Wagon 5spd
    jay-d.com

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    Great job and nice pictures!
    How about a picture of the beam pattern? Like a shot in the dark with lights on, and camera 30-50 feet to the side (and may be from some high point) exposed by brightest point in front of the car?
    94 SS 5spd Aegean Blue Metallic

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    RadeOn,

    I will do that once it stops raining.. been raining a couple of days here
    JD - 2005 Legacy GT LTD Wagon 5spd
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    "FNG" boxerpower's Avatar
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    very beautiful write up. it deserves a round of applause.... clap. clap. clap!
    i'm sofa king retarded!

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    "FNG"
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    warrior, is it still raining? It'd be good to see the beam patterns on the road. Pretty please?

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    SLi Resident warrior's Avatar
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    Sorry for the delay.. been really busy with family this month. I live in a suburban area so there's street lights everywhere... I'll try to find a non lit area and snap some more.

    JD - 2005 Legacy GT LTD Wagon 5spd
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    Nice write up, have similar car as you have, but normal headlights, in your opinion with HIDs with projectors is better than normal headlights? or other way around?
    Thanks
    AP

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    SLi Resident J.McDonald Knives's Avatar
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    Is there a way to convert normal OEM headlights into projector headlights?
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    Yes it will just require a little more modification. Plus the light output will most likely be affected by the Lenses on the stock headlights. IMO best to just go out and get the JDM projectors and buy a plug and play HID kit.
    Mess With The Max, Get Scrapped Like The Rest!

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    SLi Resident J.McDonald Knives's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AkumaMax
    Yes it will just require a little more modification. Plus the light output will most likely be affected by the Lenses on the stock headlights. IMO best to just go out and get the JDM projectors and buy a plug and play HID kit.
    thanks for the info.
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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    So the e39 projector is a low beam only projector? Is there another bi-xenon projector besides the FX projector that will fit?

    It seems like the e55 projector is a possibility, or maybe These ?

    Edit: These e46 projectors also look promising: Ebay Link

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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    e55 bi-xenon also fit which is what i m using now

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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    Quote Originally Posted by BDS13driver
    e55 bi-xenon also fit which is what i m using now
    Was the install similar to this writeup on the e39's? Also, how was the wiring of the solenoid done?

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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    Quote Originally Posted by anothernord
    Quote Originally Posted by BDS13driver
    e55 bi-xenon also fit which is what i m using now
    Was the install similar to this writeup on the e39's? Also, how was the wiring of the solenoid done?

    the install is very similar to this write up. however, i make my own bracket to hold the projector in-place because the bracket will look very flimsy when you cut off the stock projector from the bracket. and as wiring the solenoid what i did was put a diode in between the high and low beam ground so that when i have my high beam on- the low beam wont turn off. some people prefer not to use a diode. but i have no problem with my current setup. as for wiring diagram of what i use you will have to wait til monday when i get back to work to use the scanner

    edit: updated wiring diagram

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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    That would be greatly appreciated

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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    I still don't know what happened that day when I tried to get the high and lows independent from each other.

    i wired it from what I saw here I heard the relay click when I turned the headlights on but the way I had it wired up I think the high beam indicator was dimly lit or the headlights did not come on at all.

    I don't know if the relay was bad or what.. I mean it was already in the car when I brought it under the dash disconnected for who knows what the hell it was connected to..

    Right now to turn the high beams on I use a press button on the dash that is green when off and Red when turned on.. however it's quicker to flash the stalk then press the button.

    having said that I'm building another relay from a new one I brought yesterday I don't know if I'm ready to switch from the press button switch yet but I'd like having the stalk for high beams back.
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    Re: BD/BG JDM Projector Retrofit + HID

    does anyone know what size the stock projector lens is?

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