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Technical 1937-39 Ford headlight converions,which best, look original?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Tim G, Aug 21, 2014.

  1. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    I have just bought a 39 Ford Standard which has horrible(as far as i am concerned) sealed beam headlight conversions fitted(see pic)
    I would like some original headlights but haven't seen any come up for sale yet so have been looking at the conversion units on ebay like these http://www.ebay.com/itm/311022108783?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT
    Can anyone tell me how original these look when fitted or even better has anyone got a photo of a car with them fitted?

    Thanks, Tim

    [​IMG]
     
  2. good question....funny no responses.....think the original stuff is cool to run with bulb up dates if you can....going for that on my 39delux....
     
  3. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,605

    gnichols
    Member
    from Tampa, FL

    I believe those 40 Ford-style light kits were pretty popular in the day, upgrading to sealed beams and all, and a more modern look for the post WWII world. Perhaps they'll grow on you over time? Gary
     
  4. Electroline was the most common brand of conversion and most closely resembles '40 headlights. I like the bulb and reflector type lights,upgraded with halogen. Bob Drake makes reflectors that take a common halogen bulb you can get at any parts store. The reflectors have a coating that never needs to be polished or resilvered. The ones on my truck have been on it over 20 years and look as good as when they came out of the box, stock lenses, headlights as bright as any modern car.
     
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  5. jseery
    Joined: Sep 4, 2013
    Posts: 742

    jseery
    Member
    from Wichita KS

    The one in the link looks fine to me, assuming that it takes the original lens and trim ring. I can't stand the 40 ford type of conversions on these cars, one of my 38s came with them.
     
  6. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    I know what you are saying about stuff growing on you but i love the look of the front of the 38/39 Fords and part of that look for me is the lovely original lights... pretty sure i will never like the ones currently fitted.

    Thanks for your imput guys, ideally i would love to find a set of originals and update the reflectors as mentioned. I'll keep searching... If anyone comes across a pair please let me know.

    Thanks
     
  7. Imwalkin
    Joined: Jul 29, 2004
    Posts: 545

    Imwalkin
    Member
    from Tucson, Az

    [​IMG]
    Mine. If I remember right they are vintiques conversion.
     
  8. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    Ok, I have another question, something i hadn't thought about until now... What are the chances that the original bowls are still fitted with these conversions just fitted over the top where the original lens and rim would fit? do you know Jseery?
     
  9. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    Is that the reflector conversion or the whole headlight?
     
  10. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,605

    gnichols
    Member
    from Tampa, FL

    Well, you know how it is, some fads don't last. I gave up on Davy's coon skin cap and saddle shoes in about the 5th grade. I suppose you could sell them to one of those old timers (or newbie) who seem to be lacking that certain spark of inspiration needed to get beyond the practical. You know, the old geezers who wear black socks with shorts. There are a lot of them here in Florida. Har har.

    I'd bet you a beer the OEM buckets are behind those conversions, but buying a new kit from Drake would still be a good deal in the long run. Gary
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2014
  11. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    Damn, I've always worn black socks with shorts... i didn't realise that was so uncool! :)

    A beer it is! You mean the drake reflector conversions or the whole headlight units?
     
  12. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,605

    gnichols
    Member
    from Tampa, FL

    I'd prefer the OEM-ish / re-silvered deal now. I had the 7" / H4 conversion for my 37 Fordor under Down's style lenses, but never liked them as much as I thought I would. But they WORKED fantastic you could run at 85 and still see far enough to brake safely if needed. Gary
     
  13. LOWDUG37
    Joined: Jan 31, 2007
    Posts: 850

    LOWDUG37
    Member

    I have used the ones Mac's sells,H-4 bulb with built in park/turn signal bulb
     
  14. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    On the car on your Avatar? I love that car, do you still own it? When it was on ebay a while ago i was spreading the word hoping someone i know might be tempted to buy it :)
     
  15. jseery
    Joined: Sep 4, 2013
    Posts: 742

    jseery
    Member
    from Wichita KS

    I don't remember how they are converted! At the least I would think you would have to remove the reflector, but can't remember if they fit inside the original buckets. I will have to take a look.
     
  16. I bought these for my car: http://www.ebay.com/itm/1935-1939-F...Halogen-Bulb-Chrome-Reflector-v-/281138337111

    I painted the inside of the original housing a silver metalic. The install was easy. They worked alright. It wasn't to the level of a new car but I could see where I was going. The original curved glass lens doesn't lend themselves well to any new style light because it spreads out the light so bad. I'm going to add BLC style fog lights when I put the car back together to help out. I didn't drive it much at night before I took that car apart so I only have a limit test period.

    I too love the original curved glass look. The sealed beam stuff never looks right to me.
     
  17. cvstl
    Joined: Apr 15, 2009
    Posts: 1,436

    cvstl
    Member
    from StL MO
    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    39 Std has the same headlights as 37/38, so you have a little broader range when looking for parts.. Right now, I have sealed beam bulbs in mine, clipped into the original reflector clips. It takes a little work to get them adjusted, but they work fine. I'll be upgrading soon to these..... http://www.macsautoparts.com/ford_m...2-volt-with-turn-signal-ford-passenger-1.html

    I'm not suggesting one vendor over another, but these seem to be the best value. I bet all you need is a kit like this and the lenses, clips, gaskets and trim rings..
     
  18. Tim G
    Joined: Jan 3, 2009
    Posts: 551

    Tim G
    Member

    Thanks again for all the input guys, I guess i need to wait till i actually get the car in hand(mid September) and see what is left of the original before ordering what ever i need. hopefully the original bowls are there and i can just buy the conversion reflectors, rim and lens.

    I don't do a massive amount of driving at night and when i do i will just have to drive at a suitable speed depending on how good the lights are.
     
  19. LOWDUG37
    Joined: Jan 31, 2007
    Posts: 850

    LOWDUG37
    Member

    I don't have them on this car but I used them on my 36 and 2 of the 37's I had. Yes I still have the 38 sedan.
     
  20. before you decide what to do you almost really need to see what you have and if you have the original lights see what the reflector material is like on the original lights.....i used the speed way kit that has the halogen light bulbs and the turn signal kit. it would have been better if i had purchased a new reflector.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
    Tim G likes this.
  21. Dak Rat
    Joined: Mar 8, 2006
    Posts: 367

    Dak Rat
    Member

    Yes, the original buckets are behind those ugly seal-beam conversions. Easy to convert back to original look with parts from Drake and others.
     
    Tim G likes this.
  22. mikajaakkola
    Joined: Feb 10, 2014
    Posts: 3

    mikajaakkola
    Member
    from Finland

    20150119_135419_resized-1.jpg Hi guys, found this thread when searching clues for Ford headlight replacement.
    I have the same problem than Tim G has, except I already bought all the stuff I need for the original-look-a-like-conversion. My 1939 Ford Standard has been converted to 12V in the past.
    Now, as I understood, there's a parking light bulb, then the one for the low/high-beams and then I need one extra for turn signals.

    Currently, there isn't any front parking lights in my car, only turn-signals.

    I need to figure out how the wiring for the front parking lights work? Would it be possible (or even wise) to put the turn signal and park light to the only park light bulb and what kind of wiring it requires? in the rear there's park/turnsignal/taillight and they work good.

    Then the other question, how visible are those orange turn signal bulbs in original type headlight? I can see in 37ford4dr's photos, that they kinda stand out from the headlights... Is that really the case? :-/

    Here's a picture of my car with current headlight setup.
     
  23. mikajaakkola
    Joined: Feb 10, 2014
    Posts: 3

    mikajaakkola
    Member
    from Finland

    Ok, this is how I did it, and I think it turned out quite nicely. So, I have 12V system and all the replaced bulbs are 12V. I ordered complete "stock type" kit from Bob Drake. The turn signal sockets are from Mac's.
    10962189_10152831052878821_1977846532_n.jpg 10968094_10152831053163821_54335276_n.jpg 10967790_10152832648173821_1283111980_n.jpg 20150207_192012_resized.jpg
     
  24. The new kit's offer by Bob Drake and a few others are far superior to the pieces offered in the past. HRP
     

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