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Headlight refinishing...the easy way

 
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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 17 Aug 2011, 09:18 pm
AyeCantSeeYou's Avatar
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chromenut View Post
Nice job, and I agree, take your time, follow the instructions, and your headlights will look good as new.

I wonder if there is a clear vinyl with UV protection that I can put over my lenses? I don't know if clear coat paint has UV protection, and I'm concerned about what it will look like on the lens. Never painted clear plastic before, hoping Candyman will give an opinion here.
Yes, the stuff I used has UV protection. It's easy to put on the headlights too!

MetroRestyling High Quality Colored Lens Vinyl Films.

This is towards the bottom of that page:

•When applied correctly the film is very durable.
•When heated and stretched it can be applied to extreme curved surfaces with a little patience and work.
•The film is coated with a UV protective layer which lasts up to nine years outdoors.
•Once applied and bonded to you surface you may clean it and polish it with any type of cleaning agent that is used for painted surfaces.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 17 Aug 2011, 09:40 pm
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Quote:
Originally Posted by AyeCantSeeYou View Post
Yes, the stuff I used has UV protection. It's easy to put on the headlights too!

MetroRestyling High Quality Colored Lens Vinyl Films.

This is towards the bottom of that page:

•When applied correctly the film is very durable.
•When heated and stretched it can be applied to extreme curved surfaces with a little patience and work.
•The film is coated with a UV protective layer which lasts up to nine years outdoors.
•Once applied and bonded to you surface you may clean it and polish it with any type of cleaning agent that is used for painted surfaces.
That's my girl. You know i was gonna suggest it but i was afraid that it was played out. it's really easy to put on and take off. If it's been on there a while, the heat from the lights and the engine kinda drys out the vinyl. the heat doesn't hurt the vinyl or compromises it's adhesiveness, but it does make it super easy to take off. So when it's time to switch out the tint or clear vinyl it comes off like in a few seconds.
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old 17 Aug 2011, 10:58 pm
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Hmmm... may have to give it a try.

Well, am finished with both headlights now. Tomorrow I attack the fog lights, they hopefully will be much easier.

As I mentioned early on in this thread, I missed a photo of the headlight after the 500 grit sanding, so here's one from the passenger side:




Yesterday I used a liquid plastic sealant with UV protection, takes forever to dry, here's what it looks like today:


Both headlights now complete and sealed:


Today I had issues with getting some of the surface scratches completely polished off. After trying with the 3000 grit, I finally gave up and went and bought some wet/dry 1500, stuck velcro on the back and boy did that work. Followed that up with new 3000 and man it worked great. The sand paper I used from Advance Auto is 3 3/8" wide by 9" long, so I got three pads from each. Now I have enough to do a couple more cars, so hopefully we'll be doing a Tool Time soon and I can help someone out.

Here's the before and after comparisons, boy what a difference:






The pictures just don't do it justice, they are crystal clear, better than when I bought my PT!!!

Still took me three hours today to do the passenger side, so reduced by an hour. I must admit, it required a lot of elbow grease (literally - arms are sore) and a lot of patience, but I really enjoyed doing the work. It really gave me a great feeling, seeing my headlights go from dull and dingy to clear and bright. Now I'm looking forward to finishing up the fog lights tomorrow!

I'll be doing some night shots soon, just to see how nice and bright they now are. Will post when done.

Last edited by Chromenut; 17 Aug 2011 at 11:02 pm.
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  #24 (permalink)  
Old 18 Aug 2011, 12:27 am
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

it would ahve been cool to take a light meter and see where they were as to where they ARE
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Old 18 Aug 2011, 04:05 am
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

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Originally Posted by cruserdad1976 View Post
it would ahve been cool to take a light meter and see where they were as to where they ARE
I didn't think of that or I would have. I park down at the bottom of my driveway facing uphill. It's about 140 feet to the top. Before, my headlights only lit about 2/3rds of it, now they light all the way to the street, same parking spot.
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  #26 (permalink)  
Old 18 Aug 2011, 04:39 am
SCBluePT's Avatar
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Good writeup Chrome.They look great!
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old 18 Aug 2011, 08:22 am
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

After this thread - I had had my son do his lights on his '96 3000GT - used the 3M kit - had used the Meguairs kit with only minor improvement. Followed directions and they look like new.
Particularly appreciate pointing out the need for the headlight sealer.
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  #28 (permalink)  
Old 23 Aug 2011, 10:27 pm
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Front end is completely finished off now. Headlights, foglights and chrome all polished and look like new! While I had my orbital out, thought what the heck, might as well dot he chrome too. Gee, didn't realize how funky it was until after i polished all the front end chrome. The glare off it was almost blinding...lol







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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 08 Sep 2011, 11:50 am
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

These little headlight restoring kits are amazing. It's the first thing my husband did to Petrie after we got her fixed. I was doubtful, as it was one of those "as seen on TV" kind of things, but wow! Yes, they look better they they did when we first bought her. Amazing.
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Old 08 Sep 2011, 12:09 pm
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Default Re: Headlight refinishing...the easy way

Just got back from Virginia visiting my Grandkids. While there my son's Nissan Altima had some of the bad headlights and I convinced him to get the Mcquires Restoration Kit. He parked in the garage to cool everything off, Used the blue painter tape to cover the fenders and went to work under my supervision. Left headlight came out great without too much effort. He was quite surprised. The right one didn't fair too well. The center of the light and the upper portion and edges came out OK but the whole bottom edge (about 1 1/2 inches high) didn't budge form the cloudy/dull finish. After he got done, I tried it myself and it still didn't clean it. All I can think of that the cloudiness was on the inside. They still look 95% better than when we started.
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