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Sanding headlamp lenses...?

Discussion in 'Detailing' started by 45longcolt, May 24, 2008.

  1. May 24, 2008 at 2:47 AM
    #1
    45longcolt

    45longcolt [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Well, the "botched" BHLM Headlamps I bought of Ebay are almost totally redone now. Took them apart and stripped the cheap black paint that was on there off with Acetone. Repainted with Brownell's Matte Black Aluma-Hyde II spray paint. They look good now and I have both back together and sealed with silicone. Next step, get the 18K miles of tiny road specks off of the lamp lenses.

    Has anyone ever attempted this with the Tacoma headlamps? Since I only have these (2) lamps to do I got the Permatex kit that has the (4) grades of fine sandpaer to use along with some liquid polish. I tried the polish alone but the specks remained and will have to be sanded off of there.

    So in a few hours from now I hit the back yard with water hose and the lamp assys. for some serious hand action on them. This is going to be messy but hopefully in the end will be worth it for me to have new looking lenses. Here is a pix of what they look like now.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. May 24, 2008 at 6:44 AM
    #2
    chris4x4

    chris4x4 With sufficient thrust, pigs fly just fine. Staff Member

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    I wouldnt sand them. They dont look that bad. Use a good rubbing compoud/polish. One that is a diminishing abrasive formula. It will work good.
     
  3. May 24, 2008 at 6:52 AM
    #3
    45longcolt

    45longcolt [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I tried just polish alone and it didn't phase those specks on them at all except fill them with polish so they showed even more. And it was very gritty polish too. That polish left a haze so I went over that area with some finer Flitz metal polish and the Flitz removed the haze the first polish left so it works just like the sandpaper, decreasing grit to get the best look. I'll report if I screw em up or make them look better.
     
  4. May 24, 2008 at 7:04 AM
    #4
    missileman125fw

    missileman125fw Well-Known Member

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    That is looking pretty sharp! I thought there was a product out there just for those plastic covers. I couldn't think of the name if I had to right now, though.
     
  5. May 24, 2008 at 9:41 AM
    #5
    45longcolt

    45longcolt [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I just got through with 2 hours worth of sanding and polishing. Now I have a headlamp assembly that looks like shit but 95% of those specks and all the tiny scratches are now gone. I got to find myself one of those mini power balls though as there is a lot of polishing left to do. The last sandpaper marks are still visible so they must be removed via liquid type polish.

    I had rigged up a chair holding the water hose so it ran over it slowly as I sanded. It slowly got smoother as I sanded and switched grits. It's gonna take a lot of work to get them back to clear though. Not sure if it was worth it or not. Since they were not that bad. I may change my mind though when it is all done and looks like it only has 5K miles on it, not 18K.

    BTW, that 2 hours was just on one of them! At least I tested the waterproofness of that one lamp assembly as water was everywhere on it.

    EDIT: Went and got the mini power ball and spent 1 hour before the battery died polishing on the lamp. It worked! I used Flitz mainly and almost all of the last sandpaper marks are gone and the lens is starting to look brand new again. A good charge and I hit it again tomorrow to finsih this one up. I think just a polish with this power ball may take care of most of the other lamp's lens specks. Power ball=+1 :)
     
  6. May 24, 2008 at 6:23 PM
    #6
    45longcolt

    45longcolt [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Here's what it looks like now. A few hours ago it was all sanded looking and white. A few small specks remain but for the most part I am satisfied with the way the sanding and polishing is turning out. Sure was a lot of serious hand work though but it paid off. The power ball after an hours worth of polishing looks just like it did when I bought it, not torn or worn down.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. May 24, 2008 at 6:30 PM
    #7
    Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Well-Known Member

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    Sorry I didnt jump in here sooner-GS27 works wonders on lenses!:)
     
  8. Aug 21, 2008 at 3:05 PM
    #8
    davz45

    davz45 Member

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    This one really shocked me!! I was about too start the job of rubbing down my wifes Camry's headlights with a compound and came across a can of plastic and rubber cleaner made for Honda ATV'S and only sold at the Honda store. I thought??:rolleyes: what the heck..gave'um a spray and they look as good as new!!:eek::D she's thrilled! I'm happy! and it only took less than 5 minutes,this stuff reminds me of a mix between WD-40 and wax pretty cool!! Don't have a name just ask [if interested] for the polish thats a spray for ATV's.

    Dave
     
  9. Aug 21, 2008 at 3:44 PM
    #9
    monoman

    monoman Time to get dirty!

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  10. Aug 21, 2008 at 4:32 PM
    #10
    Brunes

    Brunes abides. Staff Member

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    Plexus is the same kind of product and works pretty well.
     
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