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Off road lights

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by Justin, Apr 21, 2011.

  1. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:18 AM
    #1
    Justin

    Justin [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I'm too broke to think about that.
    I want to get the the n-fab light bar for my taco, and throw some lights onto it. I was suggested the Warn W650D DRIVING LIGHT and I didn't know if they were any good or not. Suggestions?
     
  2. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:23 AM
    #2
    Phuket

    Phuket Well-Known Member

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    I suggest Soltek Lapaz by bajadesigns, very good light!
     
  3. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:25 AM
    #3
    Caduceus

    Caduceus Well-Known Member

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    warn have a mediocre reputation here; not sure why other than they're pricy.

    As for the Hella 500, there about as bright as stock headlights. In other words, bargain lights that don't do all that much. Good news is you can make them HID converted for cheap. Of course, a lot of that light is just wasted into the sky.

    Take your time on the lights, do some reading and see what's out there for what you plan on them. Street lights? off road lights? Distance, near, sides of the road, fog? colored lights/ Then plan accordingly.
     
  4. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:36 AM
    #4
    JLee

    JLee The Man! Vendor

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  5. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:52 AM
    #5
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    I've got the PIAA 520 driving lights and am happy with them so far. I'm mostly on road and use them to suppliment my high beams (although they basically make the high beams obsolete). I'm sure there are better options out there but I'm happy with them. Caduceus has a good point though, you should decide what you want the lights for, then research accordingly.
     
  6. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:54 AM
    #6
    Richard Cranium

    Richard Cranium The lice...they hate the sugar

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    Wow, those are fucking insane!! :drool: @ a 20" bar behind my Satoshi

    I smell a group buy :spy:
     
  7. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:55 AM
    #7
    ViperJay

    ViperJay These are the voyages...

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    I've never had problems with my KCs, very reliable light imo.
     
  8. Apr 21, 2011 at 7:56 AM
    #8
    Zombie Runner

    Zombie Runner Are these black helicopters for me?

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    I converted my 500's to 55w hids and they are F***ing bright! Im not sure what you mean by "wasted into the sky" because I have the 'spot' beams and they throw a very solid beam of light without much being dispersed outside of the 'spot'.
     
  9. Apr 21, 2011 at 8:03 AM
    #9
    Richard Cranium

    Richard Cranium The lice...they hate the sugar

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  10. Apr 21, 2011 at 8:05 AM
    #10
    kmok

    kmok Plastidipped ma Hootus!

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    I have 3 Hella 700ffs on my light bar and I really like them.


    I don't know where you're getting that they're only as bright as stock headlights :confused: My 700ffs are much brighter than my stock headlights.
     
  11. Apr 21, 2011 at 8:17 AM
    #11
    David K

    David K Well-Known Member

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    Differential Breather Mod Light Bar: 2 Hella 4000 HID, 1 Cibie Halogen. Bilstein 5100s Ride Rite Air Bags
    If you can afford it get HID driving/ Euro lights. The cheap Kragen ones' plastic body craked on me while driving on washboard graded roads... got them repaired with fiberglass... I also have a pair of metal body Hella 4000 Pencil/ Spot beams with 100 watt halogen bulbs.

    [​IMG]


    Amazing how buch brighter & whiter 35 watt HIDs are compared to 100 watt halogens:

    [​IMG]


    Here is Tacoma Factory High Beams:

    [​IMG]

    Here is adding HID Euro Beams (Kragen):

    [​IMG]

    Here is adding Hella 4000 Pencil Beams (note the center, distance):

    [​IMG]
     
  12. Apr 21, 2011 at 8:52 AM
    #12
    Zombie Runner

    Zombie Runner Are these black helicopters for me?

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    LED interior lights, stubby antenna, Pioneer in dash screen, good driver mod.
    I hope you plan on upgrading the wiring on your lights before switching to the 100w's
     
  13. Apr 21, 2011 at 8:58 AM
    #13
    Justin

    Justin [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I'm too broke to think about that.
    Okay thank you. Right now I just have all stock lights, and I want something that will light up the dirt roads at night really bright, especially since i do a good amount of night mountain driving. I would like to spend somewhere around 200-300 for a pair of lights, so what do you suggest?

    And how easy is it to switch out the stock head lights?

     
  14. Apr 21, 2011 at 9:04 AM
    #14
    Justin

    Justin [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I'm too broke to think about that.
    And is there a website to compare different lights?
     
  15. Apr 21, 2011 at 9:08 AM
    #15
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    This website is a good place to start, you'll get a lot of opinions. PIAA's website has a good explaination of beam patterns, driving vs fog vs their all-terrain pattern with is a hybrid of the 2. Again, you need to figure out which pattern you want, the abuse you think they'll see, then pick a lamp size based on your mounting set-up and that will limit your search to something managable.

    And what do you mean change out the stock headlights? You mean swap bulbs or take out the headlight assembly and put another in? Swapping bulbs is easy, changing to a new assembly is fairly easy depending on what you replace them with. Some aftermarket assemblies require some additional wiring and aren't just plug and play.
     
  16. Apr 21, 2011 at 9:14 AM
    #16
    Justin

    Justin [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I'm too broke to think about that.
    The bulbs really; just switching out the bulb to get something brighter. Is it as easy as taking out one bulb and putting in another?
     
  17. Apr 21, 2011 at 11:07 AM
    #17
    Richard Cranium

    Richard Cranium The lice...they hate the sugar

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    If you want HIDs for example, it's as easy swapping out bulbs and installing ballasts. Keep an eye in the group buy section for a Slim Cubby HID group buy. He does the GB every other month or so and they're good quality kits. Literally hundreds of TW members have bought their kits from his GBs.
     
  18. Apr 21, 2011 at 11:12 AM
    #18
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    x2, the group buys are awesome! I'm running Philips X-treme bulbs in the headlights. They're a little brighter than stock bulbs and were a relatively cheap lighting upgrade. Simple as changing a bulb.
     
  19. Apr 21, 2011 at 11:17 AM
    #19
    iroc409

    iroc409 Well-Known Member

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    What kind of driving will you be doing with the lights? Highway, off road, bad weather? It can make a big difference in what you're using. Fortunately, if budget allows, you can put 4 lights on a N-Fab. You can more easily tailor your lights that way.

    Warn would likely not be my choice.

    If you are a Costco member, they sell a kit with round combo beam IPF 968's for under $100 shipped--with relays and wiring. Two lights per kit, and they come with both 100w & 55w bulbs. They are good for a budget light, as I understand it. I came very close to getting some myself.
     
  20. Apr 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM
    #20
    DevL

    DevL Well-Known Member

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    Here are some pointers while you try to start your light research.

    LEDs are not as efficient as HIDs (by a small amount) and dont throw as well. Halogen only exists at this point becasue they are less expensive. All your lights should be either LED for close range floody light or HID for longer distance light... both are far better than halogen in either role (2-3X more efficient).

    The most useful beam is a driving/euro beam for HID. Spots are great but unless you drive very fast they are not that useful. You can get smoother, wider beam patters with LED vs HID floods. If you need the upper cut off for use as a fog light you want HID once again.

    LEDs excell as flood lights (no cut off), reverse lights, and under body lights for rock lights. One issue with LEDs is that the brightest LEDs have a blue color tint whle the brightest HIDs will be pure white with a tinge of yellow. You have to have reduced output on one or the other to get color match if that is important to you.

    For an HID driving lamp you want to look for several things, in general. Metal body for durability, the beam to be focused by the reflector rather than a fluted lens or shaped lens cover for maximum light transmission, a reliable and easy to adjust aiming method, a high quality beam shape and pattern with few rings, dark spots or bright spots, and common and easy to find replacement parts and bulbs.

    There are some exceptions like Lightforce, which is a durable polymer light... however they have very limited beam patters consisting only of round, flashlight style beams, poor beam quality at certain focal positions due to the adjustable focus, etc. The covers they use smooth out the light but cut efficiency.

    When looking at housings look for corrosion free materials like stainless, aluminum, or magnesium.

    Glass can transmit light better and resists UV and sand abrassion better than polymer... however they are more likely to break from bigger rocks and thermal contraction when splashed with water.

    Most lights are NOT waterproof. LEDs are, and specialty boat or contructions lights are waterproof. Some HID ballasts are NOT waterproofed. If you mount lights upside down (like on a light bar behind the grill) you often put the drain holes for water at the top of the light and can casue them to fill up. Keep that in mind if you are in lots of water.

    Before Id get any expensive offroad or LED lights, Id get a HID priojector conversion for your headlights... its usefull on AND offroad.
     
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