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relocating tail lights....need input

 
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Old 28 May 2009, 07:35 am
ravix's Avatar
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Default relocating tail lights....need input

if anyone has relocated their tail lights, what did you use to do it? Steel, glass, etc.? I had a friend forming steel plugs but he didn't finish them. (they are flat steel currently) The company he worked for had a magnetic press but he left the state. I am preparing to go nuts on the body and the tail lights are victim #1 and I REALLY don't want to just replace them.
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Old 28 May 2009, 09:28 am
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Default Re: relocating tail lights....need input

Something I wonder. If you move/modify your taillights and then someone rear ends you. Someone gets hurt or the other car is totaled and some fancy lawyer gets involved, notices your taillights aren't in the stock location or are otherwise modified. Can you be found at fault?

Forty some odd years ago when I got interested in cars. Hot rods and modified cars were all the raze. Chopped and channel, french head and taillights, shaving the chrome. But now days with every one suing for anything they think they can get money from someone else for, I worry about modifying such things.
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Old 28 May 2009, 03:05 pm
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Default Re: relocating tail lights....need input

great! ther you go getting all logical and all. Sheez, can't person put everyone else life at risk for once?

Kidding, that is a good point. Although the location I am moving them to was higher and BETTER viewing. (I am using Chevy HHR light buckets or something very similar) Besides, in florida if they rear end me they are automatically at fault. unless the circumstances are extreme. Should not follow so close behind....
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Old 28 May 2009, 06:22 pm
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Default Re: relocating tail lights....need input

Quote:
Originally Posted by ravix View Post
in florida if they rear end me they are automatically at fault. unless the circumstances are extreme. Should not follow so close behind....
Take it from someone who writes those kinds of citations, probably 20% of those on the road don't carry the proper insurance if they carry any at all.
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Old 29 May 2009, 03:41 am
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Smile Re: relocating tail lights....need input

Hey their ravix,

As far as the Mod goes, I would do them out of metal. Its just good practice at least for me to fill that large of an open void with metal not only form a body standpoint, but for paint as well. Weather it be metal, fiberglass, urethane, plastic, and so on, different material requires different applications, materials, and techniques to paint, and when painted separate, its a different story, but try to mix two or more elements, and then try to get paint to match up would be a pretty good trick for real. Not saying it can't be done, but if I were shooting it, on something like that, even done in metal, depending on the color I would probably want to re-shoot the entire trunk, bumper, and try to blend into either the front part of the rear quarter panels, or even possibly into the rear doors to get a good match. That is an easy $1500.00 to $2000.00+ job just in paint. I'm not trying to down a cool mod, but trying to keep it real for you up front.

As for making the plugs, the way I would do it is to make a dye probably out of wood. Basically take a good block of wood, remove your tail light, trim out a good rough cut of the shape of your taillight, then take a Dremol tool, or Sander an start sanding away till you have a good smooth dye to work from. Remember you are going to need one for each side. Once you have each dye done to spec, then you can take your metal pieces and either have them pressed out, or you can take a body hammer, and go to town. The only downside if you choose to rough them out by hand is afterward you will need a tool like an English Wheel to smooth them out into a usable part as where a press will give a decent workable part from the start. Always remember to allow for shrinkage either way when forming metal, work slowly, carefully, and keep checking your progress often.

I know their are also a few other, better, and more expensive routes that could be taken, but I wanted to post up the old school tried and true ways of home built custom chopper style building on a budget without a bunch of fancy, and expensive machinery to work with on building your own custom parts.

That's my take on the Mod anyways.

As for the rest, I kinda have to agree that if they rear end you, at least as far as I know, the majority of the time it should likely be their fault, and you should be covered. As far as I know, and Crewzin, please correct me on this if I am wrong, but I think the Federal DOT Law reads as requiring two tail lights, one reverse light, and a license plate, or "Courtesy Light" is all that is required to be legal, and does not specify size, or location as long as everything is functional, and you have one tail light on each side of the vehicle you should be legit by present law. The reason I remember this was back when I was driving trucks long haul, we had to be sure all lights were present and working from the Tractor, to the last trailer every time we passed through a Weigh Station in any of the lower 48 States or you were begging for a full DOT Inspection, possible fines, and the truck could be placed out of service while you pay for a service truck to come out to you and fix it, so we got very well versed on what we should have, and make double sure to do a good walk around every night to make sure everything is working!

So, for whatever it is worth, that is my two cents on it.

Good luck, go easy, and I will catch you later.

Candyman
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Last edited by Candyman; 29 May 2009 at 03:45 am.
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Old 29 May 2009, 07:13 am
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Default Re: relocating tail lights....need input

I think the only thing left out is the turn signals that are either integrated into the taillights or can be separated. They can be red or amber. Don't forget about a red reflective area, both sides that can be seen from the rear and the right and left rear quarter panels (can also be integrated into the side of the taillights).
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Old 31 May 2009, 05:32 pm
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Default Re: relocating tail lights....need input

Very very nice work!

Ive been thinking of ways to relocate the taillights myself.

Also the removal of the quarter window is definitely something I have planned But how are you going compensate on the interior for it?

Just noticed this but the rear pan looks quite similar to the Vmaxx Smoothie design.

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