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Four eyes of fire - headlight and harness upgrade on my 62

Discussion in '60-Series Wagons' started by RockDoc, Dec 2, 2007.

  1. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    Let there be more light



    A while back I started looking into bumping the light output from my truck. I do a fair bit of highway driving, much or most of it in the dark. A year ago I installed a set of Sylvania SilverStars, and loved them in comparison to the tired units I had before. Lately, however, the SilverStars have been getting dimmer, and I started looking into additional light. From what I've read, probably the only reason the SilverStars are still functional is the reduced voltage they get from the factory headlight wiring. (I have recommended the SilverStars before, I wouldn't now)

    Adding aux. lights doesn’t appeal too much to me, as I had to remove one of the light tabs from my ARB bullbar to mount my winch, and anywhere else I thought sensible (top of the bullbar, roof mounted light bar) would stick out and kill the clean look of the truck.

    Somewhere along the line, I came across a thread or two talking about upgrading to H4 halogen units in 60s and 62s (IPF, Hella, Cibié), and upgrading the wiring harness to reduce voltage drop to the lights, and allow for higher wattage bulbs (Moby reported a change from >1.5v to 0.03v in the voltage drop between the battery and lights). It was suggested that with such an upgrade and the 4 light setup of a 62, you wouldn’t be left wanting for aux. lights. Sounded good to me – more light output without affecting airflow to the radiator, or having lights sticking out all over the place. All run off factory switching to boot!! :grinpimp: These threads recommended the services of Daniel Stern (www.danielsternlighting.com), so off I went to learn more.

    In addition to a few featured products, Daniel’s website contains lots of tech info to educate yourself on auto lighting and debunk many common beliefs. You’ll find no shopping cart, as Daniel forces you to consult with him on your needs, and make sure you know what you are getting. If you have any curiousity about auto lighting, have a look through the tech stuff, really enlightening.

    After trading half a dozen e-mails with Daniel (usually answered within the half hour!), I decided on what I wanted and placed an order. He gets really high marks from me, great to work with. :cheers:

    I went with:

    A relay kit to feed power to the lights (an upgrade whether you get halogen units or stick with sealed beams). The relay kit is Toyota specific, as Toyota used a switched ground, and a finicky setup for the in-dash high-beam indicator.

    A set of 2 Bosch H4 (high/low) and 2 Bosch H1 (high) headlight units. The Bosch units came recommended above the more expensive Cibié units (for the 4 @ 6.5” x 4” size of the 62). The beam peak intensity reference numbers (explained in the tech section) for these units total 90, apparently many countries stipulate that the total for lights on a single vehicle can’t exceed 75, so they should be good and bright :cool: (well intense to be accurate :rolleyes:, and the bulbs play into this….:confused:)

    2 - 100w Narva H1 bulbs for the high beam units.

    2 - 70/65w Osram H4 bulbs for the high/low beam units (plus a couple spares).

    Not a cheap setup (~$400 US without the spare bulbs), but considering a good set of aux. lights can set you back $200 or more…..

    Here’s what it all looks like straight out of the shipping box.
    outofbox.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2007
  2. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    Last night I got started on putting together the wiring harness. It came as a kit less the wire, but fully assembled harnesses are available from others (for example - http://www.rallylights.com, HL28202S I believe, but don’t quote me on it, pretty sure there is a wiring diagram for DIY floating around on mud too). I picked up some 14 Ga wire (used around 30-35’), 12 Ga wire (used 25’), heat shrink tubing (3.5 mm and 6 mm) and rosin-core solder from Princess Auto and went to town. The 12 Ga was used everywhere the current from 2 or more bulbs was routed, with 14 Ga used where single bulb current was routed and for switching circuitry. The harness requires no cutting of the factory wiring, so the install should be clean, and removable if that is ever needed (like swapping all the accessories you have accumulated from your old rusty Canadian hulk and into a clean truck).

    The kit comes with high quality Bosch relays (3), relay holders/terminals, 2 male sockets for hooking the switching circuitry into the factory wiring, 4 female sockets to feed the headlamps, fuses and fuse-holders and all the required terminals. After measuring out the spacing on the truck, I made a list of wire lengths needed. With this and the provided instructions I set about assembling the harness. I have chosen to run the headlights directly off the alternator terminal, with grounding to the engine block. This way I am removing a 25-30 amp load from the factory alternator wiring.

    While all the terminals are crimp-type, I chose to solder each joint after crimping, and protect the exposed wire with dielectric grease within heat shrink tubing. All told, I think I spent between 6 and 8 hours getting the harness set up. Between the time it took, and the careful concentration to keep everything straight :banana::banana::banana: (I still need to install it and see for sure), I think you would be ahead to get an assembled harness. :idea:

    Some pics of the harness components and assembly.

    Photos 1 and 2 – The relays and relay holders

    Photo 3 – Soldered butt joint in one of the alternator feed line between the fuse holder (red) and added wire (white)
    relaysID.jpg relayholders.jpg solderbuttjoint.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2007
  3. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    Photos 1 and 2 – Male socket that tie into the existing headlight plugs to switch the relays and activate the in-dash high-beam indicator.
    malesocketdone1.jpg malesocketdone2.jpg
     
  4. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    One of the female sockets that will plug into the headlights. The insert is ceramic, and getting it back in the rubber housing after installing the wires is kind of like pulling your bottom lip over the top of your head.
    femalesocketkit.jpg femalesocketpart.jpg femalesocketdone2.jpg
     
  5. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    The finished (I hope) harness ready to install.
    harnessdone.jpg
     
  6. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    So that’s what I have done so far. Once the weather warms up a bit (no heated garage, highs around –15C), I’ll get the harness in and tested, then on to installing the new headlight units.

    The plan is to check the voltage drop with the stock harness and new harness to see what improvement is made, then get some nice photos to compare the SilverStars with stock wiring, SSs with upgraded wiring, and the Bosch units with upgraded wiring. I am hoping I can get some “down the road” shots with each configuration, along with direct side by side comparisons (against a wall to show intensity and pattern) of stock on one side of the truck, and upgraded on the other. Stay tuned, should be interesting.

    :popcorn:
     
  7. cullmancruiser

    cullmancruiser

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    I think you will be amazed the first time you get to use your new lights. I did this conversion a year ago and I'm still amazed every time I use my headlights. Daniel Stern is truly an uber guru when you need help with automotive lighting.
     
  8. Cruiserdrew

    Cruiserdrew SILVER Star

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    Good write up. My 60 has the notoriously weak headlights, only slightly improved with Hella H4s. The old and undersized wiring may be the reason. 12g wire is way bigger than stock-that alone is likely worth the upgrade.
     
  9. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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  10. Landpimp

    Landpimp

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    60's are 7"

    you will love the upgrade, all my Cruisers have upgraded harness and lights(IPF, Hella or Kioto E-codes)

    Stern is a great guy, i have gotten alot of lights from him, including the rare H4's that use a wierd base.

     
  11. PAFJ

    PAFJ

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    I added a Slee upgrade harness, but haven't gotten better bulbs yet. Even without the upgraded bulbs it was still an improvement over stock. You're gonna love it!
     
  12. ballardcruiser

    ballardcruiser

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    PAFJ,
    Was wondering... does the Slee harness (they only advertise one for an 80 series now) work in the 60s series? Did you have to mod it in any way?

    Jason
     
  13. Spook50

    Spook50 Get ready

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    Dan is good s***. He knows damn near everything there is to know about auto lighting, and is a HUGE wealth of info for Slant-six powered Chryslers. He's a big contributor to the slantsix.org forums that I frequent, and I've learned 90% of what I know of Slants from him.

    That said, did you take a look at the instructions and plans to build your own lighting harness in the tech section? Wayne Tangen designed it, and I've been using it for a good several year in my truck and have yet to even have to replace a relay (which reminds me I need to order a couple spares to keep in my glove box). It's a GREAT setup, and it's specially designed for the FJ62's headlight system.
     
  14. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    I came across that in my searches, but I was lazy and went with Dan's kit so I wouldn't have to track down components.
     
  15. PAFJ

    PAFJ

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    Slee use to make them for 60 and 80 series. They stopped making the 60 series, I believe I got one of the last ones. MAF sells the IPF harness, which is the same thing (H4 upgrade harness).

    HTH-
     
  16. DirtyLittleSecret

    DirtyLittleSecret

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    http://www.man-a-fre.com/parts_accessories/IPF Lights Wiring Loom Kit.htm

    This the one? Gee, that'd be a really cost effective way to upgrade a headlight system. Too bad its MAF.
     
  17. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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  18. ballardcruiser

    ballardcruiser

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    OK, now I'm really confused. How come Slee offered a specific 60 (or 80) series wiring harness when all these other aftermarket/IPF harnesses seem to be for any old two driving light/two high beam setup (60, 80, whatever)? Goes back to my earlier question of if an 80 series Slee harness would work on a 60 series setup.

    I emailed Slee so once I hear back I'll post my findings. If it's nearly plug-and-play and under 100 bucks (so I have money left over for good lights) I'll take it! I just don't want to have to learn soldering. Even if it's simple, I'd find a way to screw it up.
     
  19. DirtyLittleSecret

    DirtyLittleSecret

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    NOW you're talking my language!
    Gad, I love dealing with Kurt. In a VERY LandCruiser-ish kinda way.
    I also kinda like the idea of the IPF loom...just one more bit of ARB bumpin' down the road.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2007
  20. RockDoc

    RockDoc

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    The IPF harness seems to be the same for the 60 and 80 on MAFs website. EDIT :doh: that's what you said.....