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2012 F250 HID Retro [Completed]

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  • 2012 F250 HID Retro [Completed]

    Anyone who has driven a f250 superduty knows the light output is pathetic to say the least, this project aimed to change that while giving the truck a new unique look as well. Unfortunately I did not like the look of the aftermarket headlights available so that left redesigning the factory headlights to get that unique look. The biggest challenge designing the headlights was to make them look like they belong on the truck (the aftermarkets do not), thus I drew inspiration off the superchief concept truck; the influence can mostly be seen in the daytime running light LED clusters. The lighting goodness of this project will be delivered by a pair of HID rx350 bi-xenon projectors coupled with a clear lens upgrade, Osram CBI bulbs, and 35w morimoto ballasts.

    The f250 superduty is a rigid, durable truck, and I wanted these lights to be the same way. The projectors will be mounted to an aluminum plate to ensure a solid mounting and adjustment mechanism. All electronics will be sealed inside the light creating a single, self-contained unit to insure optimum water proofing and durability. The wiring solution to run these I designed in such a way so that if the headlight unit fails, it is extremely easy to re-install the factory lights; everything is plug and play. The wire harness is also designed to not allow the HID units to be flashed when the headlights are not on, rather a dedicated high beam projector will flash in their stead.

    Anyway enough with the introduction, here are the lights I have made.

    HID Components:
    • projectors: Lexus rx350 3" bi-xenon with STi clear lenses
    • bulbs: Osram Xenarc 66240 CBI
    • ballasts: Morimoto 3FIVE ballasts

    • led's: 30x Cree P4 70deg Amber (each side)
    • control circuit: custom built PWM circuit using 555 timer, credit goes to this guide: circuit #4
    • turnsignal LED stip functions for both the parking lamp (dimmed by PWM) and the turnsignal (full brightness)

    DRL LED Array:
    • led's: 32x Cree P4 60deg White (for each side)
    • custom etched boards for each array
    • wired to switch in cabin

    Highbeam Projector:
    • hybrid of Morimoto mini h1 front and Acura H11 mdx bowl
    • resulting optics allow for light to be "thrown" slightly above low beam
    • mostly intended as a "flash-to-pass" when low beam HID's are off

    • custom designed in ProE
    • 3D printed on a Felix printer (
    • printed with white 1.75mm PLA plastic
    • bondo work to correct imperfection from printing
    • Painted black using Dupli-Color Black Acrylic Lacquer

    Wire Harness:
    • dedicated wire harness for each light
    • dual relay to not allow HID's to be flashed with the high beams when the low's are not on; reference:
    • 16 AWG wire
    • 6A diodes
    • 15A fuses on each harness
    • single plug and play solution to the headlights

    Table of Contents

    1. Introduction, concept ideas, and dissembling headlights
    2. Gatling shroud fitment and test bracket construction
    3. Aluminum mounting plate construction
    4. Adjustment pin relocation and electronic goodies
    5. Bezel trimming and drilling
    6. More mounting plate work
    7. Mounting plate completion and turnsignals
    8. Vacuum shroud mold start
    9. Vacuum forming and circuit etching
    10. Getting close with vacuum formed shrouds
    11. Vacuum formed shrouds completed and turnsignal control PWM circuits completed
    12. Preview of shrouds in headlights
    13. New idea and change of plans
    14. First of the printed shroud pieces
    15. DRL LED boards and printed shroud preview in headlight
    16. All shroud pieces printed
    17. Testing on the truck
    18. Full shroud assembled and wire harness installed
    19. Major shroud trimming and fitting
    20. Bondo and shroud brackets
    21. DRL preview
    22. Bondo finished and primed
    23. Shrouds ready for painting
    24. Lights all sealed up and teaser shots
    25. All finished and installed on the truck

    Thank you for looking, feel free to share your thoughts. Here it the link to my photo album, it contains additional photos not found in this thread.
    CLICK HERE for more photos!
    Last edited by mcole254; April 4th, 2013, 07:52 PM.

  • #2
    I am doing a retro for my brother's truck and will be using the RX350 BX projectors with the STi-R clear lens. The inspiration for these comes from the superchief concept truck

    Here a drawing of my our idea for the headlights:

    It kinda rough but the idea is there, the bottom is the HID projector, the top is the high beam, more for aesthetics but will also function as a flash to pass without the low beam. The squares are DRL led clusters and there will be a 30-31 LED turn strip along the middle bessel.

    We later figured out that we will no be able to do this design due the the fact that the frame of the truck runs right next to the light bulb opening in the housing, so we cannot move it outwards.
    I will post some progress pictures up later.

    What do you guys think so far?

    Lets start with the lights

    tools of the trade

    after about an hour wrestling with this thing and about 7 times in the oven its finally open!

    The off plane mounting swivels will create a problem adjusting the projectors, so the inside one will have to be moved

    The initial idea of where the projector will go (now will be centered in the factory hole)

    Last edited by mcole254; February 26th, 2013, 09:34 AM.


    • #3
      Onward with the pictures!

      Trimming unneeded parts off the projectors

      Trimmed shroud on projector

      Prototype mounting plate, I made it so I can adjust the height of the projector on it. The final version will be aluminum plates and use L brackets.



      Projector mounted

      more to come later. Just got all the electronic components ordered and starting on the final mounting plates.


      • #4
        Very nice. Cant wait to see the finished product.
        2014 Ford Focus SE HB
        2004 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 on 33/12.50r15 km2s (SOLD)


        • #5
          Looks great!


          • #6
            Very nice! I really like that mounting plate. Very interesting idea. Only thing I would do different is use gloves while working with the shrouds to avoid getting fingerprints on the chrome.


            • #7
              Are you going to go with a clear lens? I would highly suggest it.


              • #8
                Why will the high beam be on the top? Trying to retain Ford's idea of less glare by keeping the lows as close to the ground as possible?
                There are two kinds of light - the glow that illuminates, and the glare that obscures. -James Thurber

                1998 Ford F-150 | FX-R 2.1 / Philips 85122XV C1 / Matsushita Gen5 | Philips LumiLEDs | Plasmaglow Fire & Ice


                • #9
                  I'd also make a point on that plate to hold the top of the RX. The way it's mounted in a super duty truck looks like it will bounce excessively.
                  2014 RAM 1500 Express RCSB 2WD- FX-R/CBI's/50W MORIMOTO
                  1989 Chevy S-10 5 speed


                  • #10
                    All the finger prints are from my brother, he got his hands on it before I started the retro. The reason I am putting the projectors in the bottom is because that is where the factory mounting pins are, and I don't want to move both if I can help it. Also I will be able to use the factory bulb hole instead of having to cut a large one at the top.

                    For the clear lens I think this answers that:

                    Here is the mounting plate I will be using for the final product, much sturdier looking. You can see where a bolt will go (on the cross near the top) to help hold the projectors level with the plate. L brackets will be used for these.


                    • #11
                      Here is a few more progress photos:

                      Pattern drawn on 0.125" plate of aluminum

                      Both plates cut

                      How it will look in the headlight

                      The bar to reach the adjustment screw

                      L bracket to hold the projector on the plate

                      The L brackets will most likely be attached to the plate using rivets. The next step is to secure the adjustment post in its new position.


                      • #12
                        Subscribed.......lookin' good so far!
                        Trax Customs


                        • #13
                          Very nice. I like the looks of the retrofit and the concept of mounting everything very much. Very good work.
                          What are you going to do for the led drl and turn signals? Did you order anything yet?
                          Subaru Outback retrofit:
                          License plate lights with dual brightness:


                          • #14
                            Good work so far. I can't wait to see the final product!
                            2004 GMC Yukon Denali
                            Hella E55 - ZKW-R - Philips 85122 - Philips LVQ-212
                            OEM Euro Manual Headlight-Leveling System


                            • #15
                              Wow that is awesome. Its gonna be mounted better than some OEM applications. looks good
                              2014 Ford Focus SE HB
                              2004 Ford Ranger XLT 4x4 on 33/12.50r15 km2s (SOLD)