CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

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Southernboy
Joined: Thu 07 Oct, 2010 13:39
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 11:31

Before you start removing clips etc... check to see if the complete headlight will fit into the oven so you can also close the oven door... if not, you'll have to find a mate with a big enough oven.. :wink:
"Normal is overrated"
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Fender2004
Joined: Fri 14 Aug, 2009 11:24
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  Z3 roadster 2.8
Location: Houghton-Le-Spring

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Fender2004 » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 12:19

When I did mine the light wouldn't go into my oven so I used a hot air gun to warm the glue after about 10 minutes the glue softened allowing me to part the light.
Then used the hot air gun to soften the glue enabling to put the headlight back together.
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handsomejackuk
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2016 11:35
Posts: 294

  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Blaenau Gwent South Wales...

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by handsomejackuk » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 19:16

i have a hot air gun here too... i may even take this route....

Fender2004
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  Z3 roadster 2.8
Location: Houghton-Le-Spring

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Fender2004 » Tue 11 Oct, 2016 19:19

handsomejackuk wrote:i have a hot air gun here too... i may even take this route....

Keep the hot air gun moving all the time around the headlight so you get even heat to melt the glue.
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handsomejackuk
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2016 11:35
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  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Blaenau Gwent South Wales...

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by handsomejackuk » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 13:40

i have just took my driver side headlight out to see how its done, and removed the spring clips, i have give it all a real good clean and oiled up the 4 securing bolts, i not going to do the deed until after this weekend, as we have a big run out, and dont want to miss it if i muck up one of my headlights...

i assume that when putting the whole headlamp assembly in the oven, that i should remove all the bulbs, and the rubber bulb gaskets, around the bulbs, what about the headlight motors, do they need to come out too...?

and there are some plastic clips that look like they are holding on the rear plastic assembly does the rear part need to come off as well... i should have took a picture but i hoping the someone will know what i am talking about...

thanks in advance...

Al

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Southernboy
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 13:43

Rubber, bulbs and motors off... Leave the plastic clips until you have it warmed up. They can be quite brittle when cold.
"Normal is overrated"
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handsomejackuk
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2016 11:35
Posts: 294

  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Blaenau Gwent South Wales...

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by handsomejackuk » Wed 12 Oct, 2016 13:52

thanks.... southernboy.....

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Southernboy
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Thu 13 Oct, 2016 17:00

Hahahaha....Just saw this ad on eBay....

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/BMW-Z3-M-HEAD ... Swr7ZW6xvm
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wifevanda
Joined: Mon 09 Aug, 2010 20:36
Posts: 51

  Z3 roadster 2.0
Location: dagenham

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by wifevanda » Sun 16 Oct, 2016 09:39

Please be careful if you have a gas oven.

peter2b
Joined: Sat 01 Nov, 2014 18:47
Posts: 935

  Z3 roadster 2.2i
Location: cheshire

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by peter2b » Fri 21 Oct, 2016 21:51

got any clear ones left ,when I rebuild the front end on my z3 I neaded replacement head lights and didn't know about clear /yellow indicators mines post face lift but got pre ones
regards peter2b

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Southernboy
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Sat 22 Oct, 2016 07:24

Hi Pete
I don't have any, and not making them any longer. You'll have to shop around for a set of cheap OEM headlights with the clear lenses fitted. Alternately, visit the scrappies and find them there - even if the headlight main lens is broken, the indicator lenses may be recoverable. LHD / RHD is not important with regard to the indicator lenses... :wink:
"Normal is overrated"
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handsomejackuk
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2016 11:35
Posts: 294

  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Blaenau Gwent South Wales...

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by handsomejackuk » Sun 23 Oct, 2016 01:58

Southernboy wrote:Hi Pete
I don't have any, and not making them any longer. You'll have to shop around for a set of cheap OEM headlights with the clear lenses fitted. Alternately, visit the scrappies and find them there - even if the headlight main lens is broken, the indicator lenses may be recoverable. LHD / RHD is not important with regard to the indicator lenses... :wink:
how did you make them.... i did wonder if there was any other model of car that they could be take from and trimmed down....?

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Southernboy
Joined: Thu 07 Oct, 2010 13:39
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Sun 23 Oct, 2016 07:39

I have a set of moulds to cast them in. Problem is, the fella that was doing them for me, and at a reasonable price nearly killed himself in a pro cycling off road race... He's not quite been himself since then. He used his head as the primary landing gear, and in spite of wearing a regulation helmet, he severly damaged his abilities.
I spoke to another chap to possibly get them made, but his quote would have meant double the price. I decided to scrap the idea, since the cost plus postage from SA would make it a waste of effort and money. I still have the moulds though, and if I ever come across another possible source, I may have some made up.
If you know of someone there who is a plastics hobbyist, and who would like to take it up, I'd be happy to sell you my moulds. It's not a very complicated process, and the materials are commonly available from any composites outlet. The only equipment needed is a small pressure pot, and a small compressor with a drying filter between the compressor and the pressure pot to remove any moisture from the compressed air. Most plastics hobbyists would have such equipment as it's a pre-requisite to being able to make castings with resins. The resin itself is a two part clear acrylic type material. One part is the hardener and the other the acrylic. The quantities involved are very small, as you can imagine - each lens is quite small, and no more than 1.5mm thick. Once cast, it's a little bit of cleaning up on the edges to remove any swarf, and then a can of "clear coat" spray. Oddly, the clear coat spray makes the acrylic absolutely clear once it's applied. The natural cast acryllic is somewhat opaque before the application.
The tricky part of the casting is mixing the two part resins, and then pouring it into the moulds without getting any bubbles trapped in the mix. That's where an experienced hand comes in... they have found the right method of doing this and avoiding the bubbles.
Regarding using lenses from another car - I have never seen another car with headlights similar to the Z3. Also, the lenses are a very complicated set of curves. They curve left / right , top / bottom, and then the lense is twisted so two opposite corners are lower than the other two opposite corners. ie. if you wanted to rest the lense on all 4 corners, it would rock on two corners and ultimately only rest stably on 3 corners - one of the two other corners. So, being a specific shape for the Z3 headlight means it would be pot luck if you ever found an alternative close enough to adapt. Also, the inner edge has 4 "u" shaped clips which correspond to 4 clip on posts in the main structure of the headlight unit. Those 4 clips are what holds the lense in position inside the headlight unit. The clips form part of the cast lense.

I hope that explains fully the problems, and possibilities.
"Normal is overrated"
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peter2b
Joined: Sat 01 Nov, 2014 18:47
Posts: 935

  Z3 roadster 2.2i
Location: cheshire

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by peter2b » Thu 27 Oct, 2016 18:42

thanks any way I only need 1 side as I have the other head light that wasn't smashed
peter2b

spurs fan in a coupe
Joined: Fri 18 Apr, 2008 20:24
Posts: 1435

  Z3 coupe 2.8
Location: woking

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by spurs fan in a coupe » Thu 27 Oct, 2016 20:45

Great commitment getting them made Barry, all the best to the guy you have been working with.

Cheers
we expres: " He did hear the bells ringing, but doesnt know where where the clapper hangs".

handsomejackuk
Joined: Sat 18 Jun, 2016 11:35
Posts: 294

  Z3 roadster 1.9
Location: Blaenau Gwent South Wales...

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by handsomejackuk » Thu 27 Oct, 2016 22:16

Southernboy wrote:I have a set of moulds to cast them in. Problem is, the fella that was doing them for me, and at a reasonable price nearly killed himself in a pro cycling off road race... He's not quite been himself since then. He used his head as the primary landing gear, and in spite of wearing a regulation helmet, he severly damaged his abilities.
I spoke to another chap to possibly get them made, but his quote would have meant double the price. I decided to scrap the idea, since the cost plus postage from SA would make it a waste of effort and money. I still have the moulds though, and if I ever come across another possible source, I may have some made up.
If you know of someone there who is a plastics hobbyist, and who would like to take it up, I'd be happy to sell you my moulds. It's not a very complicated process, and the materials are commonly available from any composites outlet. The only equipment needed is a small pressure pot, and a small compressor with a drying filter between the compressor and the pressure pot to remove any moisture from the compressed air. Most plastics hobbyists would have such equipment as it's a pre-requisite to being able to make castings with resins. The resin itself is a two part clear acrylic type material. One part is the hardener and the other the acrylic. The quantities involved are very small, as you can imagine - each lens is quite small, and no more than 1.5mm thick. Once cast, it's a little bit of cleaning up on the edges to remove any swarf, and then a can of "clear coat" spray. Oddly, the clear coat spray makes the acrylic absolutely clear once it's applied. The natural cast acryllic is somewhat opaque before the application.
The tricky part of the casting is mixing the two part resins, and then pouring it into the moulds without getting any bubbles trapped in the mix. That's where an experienced hand comes in... they have found the right method of doing this and avoiding the bubbles.
Regarding using lenses from another car - I have never seen another car with headlights similar to the Z3. Also, the lenses are a very complicated set of curves. They curve left / right , top / bottom, and then the lense is twisted so two opposite corners are lower than the other two opposite corners. ie. if you wanted to rest the lense on all 4 corners, it would rock on two corners and ultimately only rest stably on 3 corners - one of the two other corners. So, being a specific shape for the Z3 headlight means it would be pot luck if you ever found an alternative close enough to adapt. Also, the inner edge has 4 "u" shaped clips which correspond to 4 clip on posts in the main structure of the headlight unit. Those 4 clips are what holds the lense in position inside the headlight unit. The clips form part of the cast lense.

I hope that explains fully the problems, and possibilities.
only just seen this post, thanks for explaining so well how it was done.... hey i surprised no one else hasnt descided to this too, as i sure there would be a small market for them

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Southernboy
Joined: Thu 07 Oct, 2010 13:39
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  Z3 roadster 3.0i
Location: Johannesburg

Re: CLEAR HEADLIGHT INDICATOR LENS SETS - £48. All incl.

Post by Southernboy » Fri 28 Oct, 2016 05:59

As time goes by, the market will become larger as damage to headlights dries up the available OE replacement units, and as you will appreciate, it's all about having them for those that need / want them. I have no doubt that the complete headlight units will also become sought after for the same reason.
If I were in the UK, I would be looking for really cheap OE headlight units, and buying them up to restore to "as new" condition and possibly even fitting clear lenses to some. Stripping and buffing the main large front lense, cleaning up the main body and restoring the clips, mounting bracket points etc so that they will be sought after. I would definitely have a list of car breakers up and down the country and even on mainland Europe to keep in touch with for any "new" stock at a good price. Even two units which can be built into one good usable unit is worth buying, and would be worth the effort if you can pick them up for a few £'s. A decent buffing wheel,appropriate polishes, and a large oven to warm them for splitting.
One could even operate on an exchange basis - customer sends his "tired and dull" units to you in exchange for a restored set with sparkling clear front main lense etc etc... :wink:
"Normal is overrated"
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