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headlight alternative

Discussion in 'Subaru Sambar' started by sooke, Jun 25, 2008.

  1. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    This is a quote from http://www.danielsternlighting.com/tech/lights/codes/codes.html#Dip

    So if the composite headlight has a "arrow" on as per below then it is illegal in NA - end of statement.

    No amount of "adjusting" or "tweaking" can undo this.

    If you did get into a night time accident with illegal headlights I can only imagine the field day
    the insurance company would have with you as I doubt they would be willing to look the other way :rolleyes:

  2. Subaru

    Subaru Member

    Your probably right
    Same as if you use different size rims/tires than recomended for a vehicle,or not rated for the load the vehicle is rated for.
    I actually inspect accident vehicles for safety issues and causes of accidents.All depends how far you want to take things.
    Lets take DRL for example-most people will just use the low beam-that is a grey area,but all in interpretation.
    :eek:Do not get me started on the amount of people teeing into airbag harnesses to get power for their badly needed accesories:mad:
  3. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    Quote from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Headlamp#American_system

    Yes that sure sounds safer to me :rolleyes:

  4. louis westernoff

    louis westernoff New Member

    Head Lights

  5. MiniBrutes

    MiniBrutes Member


    The composite headlights are 100% illegal in every province in Canada. This applies to every K truck with composite lights as well as 97% of all the other vehicles in Japan. Skylines, Mercedes, Surfs, whatever, they all have to be changed to DOT/E code compliant lenses.

    Here is the problem with Alberta: The inspections are not government controlled. They are more controlled by the insurance companies. They are concerned about overall vehicle condition and this other stuff gets "forgotten" by many inspectors. BC and SK are government inspections and are rather detailed in what things are supposed to be. Of course, this doesnt mean that independent shops wont slide some through. Regardless of how it got through, it is wrong and is asking for trouble. Go have your truck inspected by Dept of highways or whoever handles that in Alberta, it will not pass. Sell it to someone in another province, it will not pass there either.

    Alberta is the easiest to slide vehicles through the system. Good if you dont care, but bad news for those trying to keep things legit. There are some real bad dealers in Calgary. Selling rolled back odo-cars, previous write-offs, non-compliant lighting or lenses, etc. I have a customer who bought a car in Calgary (A farilady) and brought it back to Saskatchewan. It "passed" in Alberta but needed $3800 worth of work to pass here. hmmmm

    Whoever inspected and passed your vehicle is at risk of losing their license. I guarantee if you drive to BC, you will get pulled over.

    no amount of aiming can solve the problem as the lenses are cut to the left (into oncoming traffic)

    If you were able to aim it enough so it did not shoot to the left, then 98% of your lighting would be in the ditch and not on the road.

    This is in the vehicle equipment regulations and is not exempt anywhere in Canada.

    Please keep in mind that the shops that do pass illegal vehicles are giving the govt more power to shut down the imports.

    I plead for you to (and anyone else) to follow the real laws and not rely on what your inspection station tells you. Most of them havent even read the book, no less be any kind of expert on the situation.

    We turn in dealers and inspection stations in Saskatchewan all the time. If you dont comply, and I catch you, I am turning you in. (Sorry, but its for the best of the whole industry) We also do the same for curbers.

    Certain groups are looking for reasons to shut it all down, and I am not interested in giving them any ammunition.
  6. Subaru

    Subaru Member

    I would love to show you how to aim headlights,maybe I can when you 'turn' me in.
    We can argue over this all day,but I cannot type as long of story as you:pop:
    This looks bad on this site-some things should be discussed in private-do not judge me please

    This thread should be closed:(
  7. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    I would suggest there has been enough discussion on this topic.
    I will leave it open for now in case there is any legitimate posts
    i.e. source for supply of legal replacements to help out owners
    of said vehicles.
    Any other discussion should be carried on in private.
  8. MiniBrutes

    MiniBrutes Member

    Not judging you, but merely stating fact. The headlights are illegal. Aimed or not.

    In private Timetripper? This is important for everyone. You know it as fact.
  9. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    We already established the facts in my post # 31 above.
    Just like in the EPA threads this site does not condone
    ways to get around "legalaties".
    You have both stated your oppinions and now it is time to get back to the orginal
    posters question:
    If you can answer this question it would be more helpful IMO
  10. misterturbo

    misterturbo Member

    Just thought you should know that composite JDM lighting is legal in Ontario. There is nothing in our provincial safety inspections that requires otherwise. There is an excerpt for aiming of headlights only.
  11. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    I would have to disagree with you on that.

    I would say that headlights would fall under the TC [Transportation Canada] guidelines
    - the "Motor Vehicle Safety Act" and the Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations

    The part pertaining to headlights is Standard 108
    Needs "DOT" marking on headlight surface

    and Standard 108.1
    Allows use of ECE lights that conform

    JDM headlights fit neither of these Standards above

    The above quote [post #31] from "Daniel Stern Lighting" is one of the leading authorities world wide on Automotive lighting

    I wouldn't want to be the one in court trying to prove other in a lawsuit resulting from someones death due to JDM lights.

    Also don't confuse composite lights with projector lights like used in the high end cars from Japan
    - they are completely different and can be legally modifyied to meet the TC Standards.

    Whether or not you agree isn't really that important.

    As I see it if you leave JDM composite's in a vehicle it just plain wrong.


    a) If left untouched the light will be going right into the on coming drivers eyes

    b) If adjusted so as not to blind the other driver the light will nicely illuminate the ditch but not much else.
    What use is this to the driver?

    In Canada there are two kinds of Importers of JDM's -

    the ones who skirt around issues, legalities they don't agree with, etc and sell to the uneducated public

    and the ones who do things by the book and have nothing to hide.

    Just like in the USA it's a uphill battle with the government regarding JDM's and everytime a JDM get's busted
    for not conforming it gets front page photo op and makes the whole lot look bad even though that is not the case
  12. louis westernoff

    louis westernoff New Member

    i have ti thank you for the info....headlight alternative..........but this info will not work in quebec........transport quebec want me to change the head lights.........i am trying several small cars from the 1990<s to see if i can find some thing that i can make fit .....
  13. LostBoyScout

    LostBoyScout New Member

    My van was brought in by Japanoid in BC, for all Sambars they bring in with the square headlights what they do is cut a 4x6 hole in the stock headlight lense, paint the lense black, and stick a 4x6 universal fitment H4 headlight in its spot. These can be had at any hardware/auto parts store. I'm not sure on the bracketry, as they did it, but it's apparantly quite doable, and CHEAP!

    Attached Files:

    Timetripper likes this.
  14. Timetripper

    Timetripper Moderator

    Thanks for doing this :)
  15. LostBoyScout

    LostBoyScout New Member

    No problem! I'll try to remember to peek and poke around to get more info next time I'm on the way out.
  16. Strange

    Strange New Member

    Hey Everyone, I just got my 93 pick-up & it's in the shop for an inspection.

    I have to change the headlights! No surprise, I did my home work while I was waiting for the boat.

    If you can use a chisel, drill and a jig saw, you can modify your stock plastic headlights.
    I'm doing mine right now, the first one is done, the second will be easier since I now have a template.
    The hardest part of the whole job is removing the plastic lens from the headlight assembly. They used some pretty serious goo to hold them together, this is where the chisel, knife, screw driver and even another set of hands comes in handy.
    Once you seperate the two piecies, clean off as much of the sticky putty as you can.
    Take a 2-1/2" hole saw and from the back of the housing & using the existing hole as a guide, drill a hole through the reflector. This gives you enough room to access the bulb later.
    Now take a 4"x6" square head light like a Bosch H4 with replaceable bulb and remove the small metal tabs on the back so the light will sit down flush in the stock reflector. The new light will nestle in the old reflctor nicely and can be epoxy'd in place.
    Next is to mark and cut the stock plastic lens to act as a suround. Lay the plastic lens over the new light and mark the corners with a felt pen. Connect the dots with a straight edge. Drill holes in all four corners large enough for a jig saw blade. Cut from hole to hole leaving a nice square hole with rounded corners.
    If your measurements were good, you can epoxy the plastic lens back to the housing, if not just trim more plastic. You want about 1/8" clearance all the way around for adjustment.
    Mount the lights back in the truck and aim them.
    Run a bead of silicone in the gap between the plastic lens and the new glass unit.
    The first light took about two hours to modify, the second will be much smoother I'm sure.
    Cost was less than $200 for the new headlights, 2-1/2" hole saw, epoxy and silicone.
    The lights are amazingly bright and have a replaceable bulb just like the originals.
    From 10' away you can't even tell they've been modified.
    I hope that helps.
  17. Acerguy

    Acerguy Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds great! Post some pics if you can. Thanks.
  18. air_marshall

    air_marshall New Member

    Here's what I did on a couple of Suzuki trucks that we had. Some friends and I got together and bought a container load and despite asking for all the trucks to have either round or rectangular seal beam headlights, we ended up with a couple of them with the composites. DOT compliant and no problem with passing inspection.

    Attached Files:

  19. MiniBrutes

    MiniBrutes Member

    Are those the Hellas? A bit pricey arent they?

    They look great though.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2009
  20. air_marshall

    air_marshall New Member

    They are Hella 90mm. They are a little on the expensive side and the fab work was a bit time consuming but they worked out ok in the end.

    To everyone, minibrutes was very helpful with some good advice on trying to solve this problem when I was dealing with it, even though I went with a more expensive option in the end.
  21. confuzed

    confuzed Member

    i know ghost pine imports has just got some of the new subarus in with moulded light they are converting to square via an insert they make fully adjustable not sure if they are selling them or not or if still fine tuning the design and yes ours do need to have DOT markings oh i like my round lights
  22. kepow

    kepow Member

    just wondering

    mike why did u seperate the lens from the reflector?
    with a 2.5 inch hole in the back and a large hole in the front just wondering why u need to split the assembly?
  23. jaxx

    jaxx New Member

    if you are trying to separate a subaru head light to install the dot light there is an easier way

    the subaru (car) community refers to it as baking the head lights
    turn your kitchen oven on to the lowest setting and "bake you headlights" for a few min they will then separate easly
  24. kepow

    kepow Member


    would baking seperate a suzuji headlight assembly?
  25. kepow

    kepow Member

    baking a headlight

    Im going to try baking a headlight today; will let folks know how it turns out.
  26. air_marshall

    air_marshall New Member

    I've seen it done on an Infiniti light as well, the baking (to I think around 200F or so) is just enough to loosen up the glue holding the two halves together. You still need to work on them with some small screwdrivers but they do come apart. (It's sometimes better to do it while the better half is out, they tend to think it isn't good for their oven and/or what they will cook in it later.)
  27. kepow

    kepow Member

    half baked

    did 1 light 15 minutes at 200F worked great
  28. firejonny89

    firejonny89 Member

    hey air marshall if ur still on here how did u make those lights like that i like those
  29. saplaneguy

    saplaneguy New Member

    in the grim future of 2020, is this still a working solution? has there been any developments like aftermarket mounting kits kind of like confuzed described?
  30. Jean M Mistrot

    Jean M Mistrot New Member

    @saplaneguy Id like to know as well. I have a 98 Sambar Truck and I'm about to start the lens cutting thing but hoping there is a simpler solution... also curious about DRL solutions.

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