Civic DIY Tutorials - Info The forum for "do-it-yourselfers". Place DIYs or links to ones that you think will be valuable in here.
Please, NO TECH QUESTIONS...DIY INSTRUCTIONS ONLY.

DIY: wetsanding headlight plastic - 56k warning

Old 13-Jun-2005, 09:18 PM
  #1  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
wetsanding headlights [56K go for dinner]

Full DIY is located down a few replies with lots of pictures.





hey, one of my headlights is hazy while the other is very clear. so my plan is to wetsand both headlights (to keep them equal, but obviously less sanding on the clear one) using 800, 1000, 1500, 2000, buff (with buffer) with 3M rubbing compound, and then clearcoat to protect.

just wanted to ask, anyone done this before?

meguiars plastix will not save this one headlight, its that hazed because my ride was in an accident before i bought it and i guess they only replaced the drivers side headlight.
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 13-Jun-2005, 11:48 PM
  #2  
Registered User
 
imported_JDMman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: North York
Posts: 2,254
never heard of it being done before but if it turns out post a diy cause im sure many others would want to do the same.....


by the way sweet ride.... looks ten times better in person then it does in the pics....
imported_JDMman is offline  
Old 13-Jun-2005, 11:58 PM
  #3  
-- site donator --
iTrader: (2)
 
bbarbulo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: not Toronto
Posts: 27,687
I've done it on my saturn... skip the clearcoat tho, that's just silly.

maintain your headlighs with Plastix from Meguiars at least once every 3 months and it won't happen again (unless you use high wattage bulbs, in which case the heat will discolor the plastic from the inside out)
bbarbulo is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 12:02 AM
  #4  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
JDMman i will post a DIY forsure, when did ya see me, thanks for the compliment

bbarbulo thanks for the tip, i've heard of using plastix to maintain it, so i think i'll go with that.

i'm gonna be doing this soon, if it rains all day tomorrow i'll do it then, otherwise early next week when i get back from drinkin JD with my buddies, hehe.
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 12:32 AM
  #5  
-- site donator --
iTrader: (2)
 
bbarbulo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: not Toronto
Posts: 27,687
yeah man, just expect to put a lotta muscle into it ahaha... be patient and the end result will look like new headlights (assuming they're not discolored right through) also, remember the more you remove the more distortion you introduce, so remove only the material you HAVE to remove.... and use one of those spongey sanding boards to keep pressure even on the whole sanding area.
bbarbulo is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 03:21 PM
  #6  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
one is done, holy **** it looks so much better, i'm just getting the condensation out of the other and i'll post a full DIY for others considering this. its easier then DIY CTR style smoked headlights
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 04:56 PM
  #8  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
for this i went with the following grits of automotive sandpaper and wetsand using water with soap in it to lubricate:

HERES WHAT YOU NEED:
all this sandpaper is $2.79ea at CDN tire.

180 (only if really, really, REALLY bad)
400
800
1000
1500
2000
Meguairs Plastx
Sanding block
bucket of water with soap in it
cloth x 3 (1 to keep area wet, 1 to dry area to see your progress, 1 for plastx)
buffer (orbital or highspeed if you have it, if not use cloth)

SANDING (gets as smooth as a baby's butt)
sand for about 5 minutes per grit in a smooth steady motion, each grit will erase all lines from the previous, so when i got to 1500 and 2000, i used those just a tad longer.


START (look at that pitting and hazyness)


180/400


800


1000


1500


2000



then orbital buffer and meguairs plastx (or other buffing/polishing compound) which removes the cloudy part from all the sanding and leaves it crystal clear. did this for about 15 minutes and really worked it in the best i could applying about 3 coats of plastx.




NOTE: a highspeed buffer would have removed all lines and make it shiny as hell, but i don't have access to a highspeed buffer. i'd probably go 1800-2500rpm since its plastic and if it heats up it won't be pretty. move it around alot and stop to feel how hot its getting, highspeed buffing makes alot of heat and if you melt a part of the lens, your ****ed. another trick to this is to use spray water to cool it down, i wouldn't recommend this way unless you know what your doing and have done it before.

Why 180 grit, thats pretty heavy isn't it?
yes, one of my headlights was so bad, it looks like it was from a 1990 civic that has never been washed. after this its crystal clear and you cannot see any scratches unless your like 1ft away, then you can see some small lines from wetsanding, this is because i had to go down to 180 grit to get all the pitting out. the drivers headlight was started at 400 and there are virtually no lines at all, but it was replaced at somepoint before, so it was much newer.
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 04:56 PM
  #9  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
turnout and only a hour or so of work.

Final Results

Before

After












imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 14-Jun-2005, 05:24 PM
  #10  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498




imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 15-Jun-2005, 09:56 AM
  #12  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Ontario
Posts: 18,370
How's the light output? Notice any significant light increase? How about light focus? Do you still have a clear cut off?

Nice DIY.
Nova_Dust is offline  
Old 16-Jun-2005, 11:28 PM
  #13  
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Mississauga
Posts: 223
i did this last year to mine.... but the clearcoat is coming off... i'm gonna re-do them.
1c6_eh6_t-si is offline  
Old 18-Jun-2005, 11:28 AM
  #14  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
didn't clearcoat. just used meguairs plastx and it polishes it nice and smooth and repells water too, so i'd just give em a good polish rather then clearcoat.

yes light output is greatly improved over the way it was, definately something to do if your lights are hazy or pitted
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 18-Jun-2005, 11:43 AM
  #15  
Senior Member
 
Notorious's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 15,785
Great DIY and write up.
Notorious is offline  
Old 26-Jun-2005, 12:02 AM
  #16  
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 962
bump...did it to mine today

96 HB with DIY black housing headlights

its still not 100% tho
I went from 400-600-1500 grit papers and then used plastix or whatever its called, with a waxing buffer machiene and after 3 coats or so it was greatly improved over what it was...but its not 100%....is this the best it iwll get? any tips>
imported_corcoran_chris is offline  
Old 26-Jun-2005, 12:41 AM
  #17  
Senior Member
 
cibs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Mississauga
Posts: 13,184
i've seen other DIY's and they look better than brand new...

any ideas anyone?
cibs is offline  
Old 26-Jun-2005, 12:28 PM
  #18  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
2000 grit would have helped alittle, but after that its basically scrub like hell with plastx. i still need to do mine more too as you can see some lines in person. there should not be any big lines at all, just a few minor ones that look like scratches.

another option is to you 3m compounds, they have a polish and another extremely light cutting one that may help if the lines are deeper then 1500 grit.
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  
Old 19-Jul-2005, 11:12 PM
  #20  
Registered User
Thread Starter
 
imported_alwaysoverkill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Toronto
Posts: 1,498
they are plastic, kinda like a a plastic clear cup.
imported_alwaysoverkill is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: DIY: wetsanding headlight plastic - 56k warning


Contact Us - Sitemap - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.