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Old 21st January 2004, 07:02 PM   #1
R0CKY is offline R0CKY  United States
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Question HID Headlights

Doesn anyone know where I can find information on HID Headlights? I want to make my own circuits so I just have to buy the HID bulbs and install them on my car.

HID: Those fancy bright headlights that BMW's, Benz, etc... have nowadays

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Old 21st January 2004, 08:12 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: Rosmalen, The Netherlands
Default HID headlights

Hi,

I have looked into making an HID dive light, but it seems the ballast for these lights is quite complex. There is a schematic on the net somewhere but this is only for testing purposes.
Also, hot-starting the bulbs is not quite straightforward (and, especially for automotive lighting, quite important). I think your best bet is getting the ballasts from a wrecked car. I think they are far enough from the bumper not to be harmed during impact.
As far as the bulbs go, several manufacturers make these bulbs, and there are several types of them, the only one I can remember is D2S (as opposed to, for instance, H4 or H7 for standard halogen).
For the DIYing of my diving light only the 10W bulbs made by WelchAllyn are interesting, but they are very very expensive.
D2S bulbs are 35W which is just too much light (for normal diving anyway), the ballasts are too bulky. And seeing the ballast can generate upto 35kv, this doesn't seem like a very safe thing to use in a wet environment.

Best regards,

Jarno.
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Old 24th January 2004, 01:26 AM   #3
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Join Date: Oct 2002
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HIDs are hard to adjust. It's not as simple as switching the bulb in the fixture even if you have an upgraded ballast. The light disperses much less than halogen light; if the lights are not properly adjusted you'll be blinding oncoming traffic and you won't be able to see anything. My Subaru (and most if not all HID equipped vehicles) have a HID leveling switch, this allows you to adjust your lights up and down a few degress depending on oncoming traffic and how far you need to see ahead. Even if you have the HID bulbs you'll need a fixture that allows you to adjust the lights up and down.

If you're not dead set on DIYing a pair, you can probably find a HID retrofit kit for your model of car for around $500 - $700.

All the above being said, I love my HIDs. They light up the road much better than halogen. I don't mean "light up the road" in term of pure brightness alone; objects under HIDs look more like they do in sunlight than objects under halogen.

Halogen lights also have advantages. If you need good light dispersion for viewing the sides of the road, then halogen is good. My car is HID low-beams and halogen high-beams, the best of both worlds IMO.
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Old 24th January 2004, 01:48 AM   #4
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Join Date: Apr 2003
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another problem with diy hid electronics is that the oem ballast will self-shut down in an accident to avoid high voltage zapping you or people trying to rescue you. it would be hard to do so diy.

I would say if you love hid, go get a vehicle with it. otherwise, stay with halogen.

Personally, I hate hid tho. I drive a car equip'd with one. I have been blinded many times by hid lamps I think they should just be banned, together with suvs.
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