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Chris_Hamilton

Reproducing HeadLight Covers input needed from the community

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Hello all, I'm looking for some input from some of you who may own original JDM headlight covers. I have decided

to reproduce them as I think there would be a fair amount of interest in a set of quality reproductions that are similar to the originals.

 

What I need from you, I don't have a set of originals but I have many pictures and along with some dimensions etc. that will be all I need to get started.

 

First I would like to know if there are at least 2 members who are willing to make a paper trace/template of their rings and covers and then mail them to me so that I will be able to locate the mounting holes in the correct locations. Ideally I'd like what I'm making to be interchangeable with the originals in case those of you who have them need lenses or simply want to save their originals from any wear and tear.  It would require making a trace or outline of your ring and your lens on a couple of pieces of paper. An easy way to do this is with charcoal or even a dirty finger smile.png although I would prefer it as neat as possible. A crayon would also work. Main thing I need is the location of the mounting holes.

 

I also need someone to give me a couple of measurements. 1. Width of the rings. 2 Depth of the lip on the rings. 3. Thickness of original lenses. With the template and these measurement I can make a fairly accurate reproduction.

 

I plan on using Polycarbonate (Lexan) for the lenses for their toughness and better resistance to weathering. The rings I will make in stainless steel and fully polish.

 

I realize that there has been more than a few attempts at this over the years but please be assured that I will complete these. I restore vehicles for a living and have fabricated several different types of covers and rings over the years. The molds for the lenses are done (and yes they are the rounded shape not the more angular shape of the non ring lenses) and I'm in the process of building a hammerform for forming the rings. Depending on material costs and exactly how much time it takes for me to make each ring I plan on trying to price them for around $350 to $400 with high quality stainless hardware and high quality gaskets. If there is enough interest I would also be willing to give a group discount, but I do not intend to take deposits. I only want to accept payment for sets that are ready to ship. Also when I do complete a few sets I would be willing to send a set to a trusted member for their evaluation. Not looking to make a fast buck but rather would like to build some trust within the community.

 

Thanks,

Chris Hamilton

 

Please either post here or PM me if you are willing to help with my requests. Thanks again.

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Isn't there a guy in Kansas already doing this in the Vendor's Forum. Cheap, too! At least the plastic pieces.

 

You might consider teaming with him and not reinventing the wheel, concentrate on the trim rings.

Yep. Mark Clapp has a post about replacement quarter windows, but he also reproduces other bits (including headlight covers).

 

I'm not sure if he's still producing them, but I believe David Palermo (1tuffz) was producing the trim a while back...

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Still looking fora couple of volunteers for measurements and a templates.

 

 

Molds for Lenses are done.  Working on the left and right hammerforms. Not really my concern if someone else is doing them. I plan on offering a very high quality, ready to install set, selling them through Ebay.

Edited by Chris_Hamilton

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Hey Chris, congrats on the effort to get these done. I had an original JDM set on my 280Z back in "77 and there's really no comparison with the current plastic-no trim ring repros that are available today. I don't have a set now that I could use to help you with measurements and templates but would encourage anyone who does have a set to cooperate in this effort. I would certainly be interested in a set when done. Don't give up. All we need is 1 person that's willing to help. 

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Hey Chris, congrats on the effort to get these done. I had an original JDM set on my 280Z back in "77 and there's really no comparison with the current plastic-no trim ring repros that are available today. I don't have a set now that I could use to help you with measurements and templates but would encourage anyone who does have a set to cooperate in this effort. I would certainly be interested in a set when done. Don't give up. All we need is 1 person that's willing to help. 

 

Thanks for the kind words.:)  Whether I get the info I'm looking for or not I will still be making them. Like I said before the molds for the lenses are done. The hammerforms for making the trim rings are done with the exception of trimming to final width and making a fixture for them so I can work the material over them securely. Mainly I wanted to try and duplicate the originals holes and width of the trim rings to possibly save someone who has a set from drilling additional holes. If I can't get the info I'll simply make the rings a width that is approximate and locate the holes in approximate positions relative to the photos I have.

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Got some info from someone on the ClassicZcars forum so now I can finish my hammer forms up and get started working out any bugs with production. I've also decided to switch to a coated (UV protection) acrylic for the lens so that should help bring the cost down some as well as being easier to work with. Stay tuned. :)

Edited by Chris_Hamilton

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Post up pics of your other work!

 

Here are a few paint pics of a 66 Barracuda I recently did for a customer.

IMG_20150620_200717133_HDR.jpg

 

IMG_20150620_200724965_HDR.jpg

 

IMG_20150620_200736743.jpg

 

 

  I don't have any pics of the XKE  covers and rings that I did. Also did a set for a 250 Ferrari many years ago, that was well before smart phones. I'll post plenty of pics and video of the covers on both of my Z's and send out a couple of sets to forum members for evaluation. I am confident the quality will shine through.post-46176-0-49071400-1441564271_thumb.jpg

post-46176-0-58648600-1441572926_thumb.jpg

Edited by Chris_Hamilton

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Hey Chris, 

 

Would you be interested in making a set of stainless trim rings for a Ferrari 250 GTO replica?  I need a set and so does a friend of mine who is almost finished building his kit.  I could send you my covers to use as a template.  Please let me know.  Thanks. 

 

Ferrari_32

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Hey Chris, 

 

Would you be interested in making a set of stainless trim rings for a Ferrari 250 GTO replica?  I need a set and so does a friend of mine who is almost finished building his kit.  I could send you my covers to use as a template.  Please let me know.  Thanks. 

 

 

 

I could make them but to be honest I don't know if it would be economically feasible for you. I would have to make hammer forms and that would take a considerable amount of time (anywhere from 20 to 40+ hours for a pair). Then there is the issue of trying to make them using only the cover and not having the actual headlight bucket to fit the form to. And with the Ferrari replicas buckets being integrated with the fender it would mean I would have to have the car in order to make something that would fit nicely. If there's any way you could get one of the cars to my shop and let me have it for a week or so (I'm aprox 6 hours away from you) then I could come up with something. Whether or not you want to invest the time and money is up to you. Wish I could be more help. Let me know.

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I could make them but to be honest I don't know if it would be economically feasible for you. I would have to make hammer forms and that would take a considerable amount of time (anywhere from 20 to 40+ hours for a pair). Then there is the issue of trying to make them using only the cover and not having the actual headlight bucket to fit the form to. And with the Ferrari replicas buckets being integrated with the fender it would mean I would have to have the car in order to make something that would fit nicely. If there's any way you could get one of the cars to my shop and let me have it for a week or so (I'm aprox 6 hours away from you) then I could come up with something. Whether or not you want to invest the time and money is up to you. Wish I could be more help. Let me know.

Thanks for the quick response Chris.  I'm thinking that 20 - 40 hrs adds up to be quite a bit of cost plus I would have to trailer the car over to you.  That friend I mentioned that is building a GTO kit says he might have somebody local to him that may make us both a set so I'm going to hold off for now. 

 

Thanks again for getting back to me.  Speed

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Chec

 

Thanks for the quick response Chris.  I'm thinking that 20 - 40 hrs adds up to be quite a bit of cost plus I would have to trailer the car over to you.  That friend I mentioned that is building a GTO kit says he might have somebody local to him that may make us both a set so I'm going to hold off for now. 

 

Thanks again for getting back to me.  Speed

 

Seeing your near Knoxville check with Bobby Alloway over in Louisville (TN). Alloway's Rod Shop. His shop does incredible work, he's one of the best there is period. If he is too busy he could put you in touch with someone locally that could.

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Thanks for the kind words everyone. Work continues. I hope to be making the first of my pre production rings in a few weeks. Also doing a little more work on perfecting and strengthening the molds. If all goes well I hope to begin production by the end of the month.

 

I'm also working on "reproducing" the JDM "honeycomb" style grille. Plans are to do asome in both satin black and gunmetal grey. I would also be willing to paint them in any custom color.Further down the line I plan on building a few sets of Kameari style headers, as well as some very high quality front and rear bumpers. Show quality finish and plating. I've also got plans to make a few aluminum hoods.. Carbon fiber is trick but for a classic vehicle like the S30 I think aluminum would be cool. B)

Edited by Chris_Hamilton

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