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sparky_spit

Uprating Spitfire headlights

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I've taken the Cibies off the Spitfire for the summer, as the winter night-time rally series has now finished for the year. So I'm now relying on the headlights alone, which are normal 55w/60w H4 type halogen bulbs. However, these are pretty pathetic on main beam and I want to upgrade them to something a bit more powerful, but still within the capabilities of the existing wiring (albeit with relayed main and dip) and 55Amp alternator.  I don't want to go as far as LED I don't think, or "blue" lights, but something within the H4 type fitment and will work properly without changing the headlamp bowls and lenses.

Has anyone any experience of this and used Osram Nightbreakers for example?  Or some of the 100w/100w H4 halogens that you see on ebay for £15 or so?  Any recommendations please?

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I use the 100w bulbs with relays on both the Spitfire and Vitesse.

Works well and never let me down.

Some people say that the headlights will wear out faster, but how many hours do you drive in the dark …...

JC

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Hi,

 If you do not want LED.

Fit ceramic bulb holders & a pair of fused relays. Fit quality high wattage lamps. Fit crystal clear lamp units. keep the dipped beam on with the main beam. Feed the relays from alternator output.

That's as bright as you can get with a shortened lamp life if all resistances are nice and low.

Cheers,

Iain.

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Thank you gents; that's very useful.  I've ordered a pair of 100W lamps and I'll see how I get on with them.

Powering the headlights from the alternator output already works well on the spotlights, but does make the ammeter read incorrectly when they are on.  I think I'll change the feed point for them and the headlights to after the ammeter.

I assume the ceramic holders are to reduce heat transfer?  At present the lamp's metal flange locates directly into the bowl and is held with a spring.  I think the new ones have the same arrangement. Maybe yours are different Iain?

I like the idea of having dip on as well as main, but I don't think the scrutineer will....  Plus it will need another relay and a diode to stop mains being on when dipped?

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Bit late to this...

But about 12 years ago (I was shocked when I realised it was that long ago) I bought a pair of the crystal lens lamps plus nightbreaker bulbs for my last spit, for doing 12 car rallies. The difference was astounding, and on the current spit (they survived the demise of the previous car) they are related and even better. Bulbs have not been changed, so not a bad life as the lamps have done a lot of night stuff, including one full night of rbrr, many night rallies, 2x10cr and plenty of general use. 

Bulb and lamp quality seem more important that wattage.

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similar...mine were from a LR "specialist" on fleabay, they don't have the "cap" over the bulb. I can check in a bit but I don't think they have the sidelight bulb, and are a bit domed.

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Thanks - what I'm asking is.... is the pattern that you can see in the ebay picture contained within the front glass? Or is the front glass completely plain, and the pattern is within the surface of the bowl?  It's not easy to see from the picture.

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The pinnacle used to be the Cibie H4 units with the flat glass front but still with the lens patterns in the glass. Not cheap but excellent light output, beam shape and longevity.

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The glass is completely plain. The pattern created entirely by the reflector. Mine have a curve to the "glass" (actually a plastic), no pilot/side light. Made or at least branded Wipac. 

I have had the "normal" wipac H4 units in the past, and they have corroded. Not these...

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