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Blue Dot Tail Lights WHY? When did this start?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 48flyer, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. 48flyer
    Joined: May 24, 2009
    Posts: 197


    When did we start using blue dot tail lights and why?
    I have seen them for years and just thought I'd throw this out there as another dumb question for the masses to give thier 2 cents worth.
    Happy HAMBing
  2. Tortron
    Joined: Sep 7, 2008
    Posts: 49


    from what i understand, its due to the contrasting colours. This would make the red stop lamp more visible
  3. Gearhead Graphics
    Joined: Oct 4, 2008
    Posts: 3,863

    Gearhead Graphics
    from Denver Co

    Perhaps just because they look cool?

    They were factory available on some Model A Ford cars I'm told.
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  4. theamcguy
    Joined: May 7, 2009
    Posts: 234


    When blue dots were introduced most cars had only one tail light. The addition of the blue dot would make the red tail light appear brighter and better serve its purpose.

  5. TomWar
    Joined: Jun 11, 2006
    Posts: 727


    They were illegal in Calif. before I was 16 in 1957.
  6. 33Tudor
    Joined: Aug 30, 2007
    Posts: 763


    They are still illegal in Texas. I've had them on everything, including my car trailer.
  7. customcory
    Joined: Apr 25, 2007
    Posts: 1,832


    I got a ticket for them in 1976 .:D
  8. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,776

    from Texas

    Lynx-Eye Blue-dot taillamp lenses were NEVER used as factory equipment on any production vehicle. They were an accessory available at auto parts and hardware stores beginning sometime in the late 30s.
    When Federal/State vehicle standards were regarding lighting were standardized the lenses became "illegal" since the only color lights showable by law from the rear are red, amber and a white licenese illumination light.
    I visited a junkyard in Industry TX years ago and found about 1/3 of the cars there had blue-dot lenses. That was the only junkyard I ever saw these lenses in vehicles in these numbers.
    The Blue-Dots have become "legend" so the reality of the matter is lost in the fog of memories and dreams. From all I have read and heard from "old-timers" they were never the norm in car circles, never universally popular throughout the country, and ceased being available sometime around 1957-58. The newest counter display I have ever seen had a 57 Chevy lens as the newest and I have seen counter displays with 40 Fords as the newest and 49 Fords as the newest.
    kidcampbell71 likes this.
  9. Must be me.....................................but I see them everywhere.
    I have them on all my bikes. I never ran them back in the '50s '60 because you were just asking the fuzz to pull you over, now no one seems to care. Still illegal in RI.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2009
  10. Midwest Rodder
    Joined: Dec 7, 2008
    Posts: 1,768

    Midwest Rodder

    I put them on all my cars when I was teenager, they were illeagle and I got a few tickets but they were cool and I didn't care at the time. I still like the looks of them but being the old age of 39 I haven't put them on anything in 20 years or so.
  11. sho1off
    Joined: Sep 7, 2007
    Posts: 392

    from Buffalo MN

    legal in minnesota on older cars and motorcycles, seems like the blue dots only work well with glass lenses
  12. lostforawhile
    Joined: Mar 23, 2008
    Posts: 4,160


    they are supposed to be legal in Georgia on bikes now, and i believe also on antique cars the idea was the red and blue would make it appear to glow purple.
    TCATTC and jeffd1988 like this.
  13. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 18,226

    from California

    I like nice bright red lamps at the rear of my car.
  14. My father once told me that only a particular group of people where he lived ran the blue dot tail lights and it had to do with the outcast nature they already felt they had in society (think FIST in the air with a particular color glove on) and what that stood for back then. This was in 1950s-60s Arkansas/Missisippi area and I have no idea whether it was like that elsewhere. That is just what he told me along with his stories about his 40 Ford hotrod and the drive-ins before he shipped out into the Air Force.-Weeks
  15. CruZer
    Joined: Jan 24, 2003
    Posts: 1,931


    All the time I was growing up in western Mass.(50's and 60's) I only remember seeing one car with them and it was a stock Model A coupe an old timer drove. None of the car nuts I knew ever put them on their cars.

    In fact,I didn'y know they were illegal in Mass until I got stopped in 1991 because I had them in my '40 coupe.
  16. Limey Steve
    Joined: Apr 4, 2005
    Posts: 1,523

    Limey Steve
    Alliance Vendor
    from Whittier

    I was told by an old cruiser that only the Low Rider crowd ran them & they were never seen on Hot Rods , the Don Montgomery books would concur with that too I believe,that's my 2c.
  17. Illegal in Kansas also. I have seen them in hotrods since the early 70's. I don't know the beginning history either.
  18. duste01
    Joined: Nov 5, 2006
    Posts: 1,213


    WHY- they're purdy......

    Look deeply into my blue dot's are now under the hotrod will learn the way of the hot rod.........
  19. hotrodlarry
    Joined: Jul 13, 2009
    Posts: 80


    The story I was told was they were used back when doctors mad house calls. If a doctor had blue dots, the cops knew not to pull him over if he was speeding. Once the hot rodders found out, they put them on so the cops wouldn't give chase at night.
  20. Here is a true story about blue dots.

    I pulled my lowered 68 Suburban into an all night gas station on a wet foggy night, and when I stepped on the brakes the purple glow illuminated the fog.

    I went into pay in to pay for the gas, and the kid on the register said "blue tail lights----cool" and I nodded in agreement. He asked, were you there in the 50's, I said yeah I was....He sadly shook his head and sighed----I was born to late.
  21. mj40's
    Joined: Dec 11, 2008
    Posts: 3,302


    They have been legal in Idaho since 1993. USRI presented the bill to the Idaho legislature and passed with no issues here. The law makes them legal to 30 years and older cars. You see them on most anything in Idaho now with no problems.
  22. Make the light more visible? What a load of crap, have any of you claiming this ever actually seen them? Add a darker color to a light to make it visible indeed!
  23. duste01
    Joined: Nov 5, 2006
    Posts: 1,213


    hit the light just right they are POI-PUL. PURDY.......
  24. And a search would be useful. It's been thrashed out before.
  25. KreaturesCCaustin
    Joined: Sep 3, 2008
    Posts: 1,258

    from Austin, TX

    My old man said that he and all his buddies in the Kansas City area had them in the 50s and 60s. I think maybe it's just a 'click' thing. Some crowds and/or regions had them and some didn't. My dad said that he ran them mostly because they were illegal.
  26. ha! me too , even my sporty pimped one, never got stopped for them.
  27. cvstl
    Joined: Apr 15, 2009
    Posts: 1,476

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

    A blue dot that is directly in line with the bulb can be almost blinding if they are done right..... most aren't.
  28. Loppy
    Joined: Oct 22, 2007
    Posts: 422


    Love the way they look, plus they match my headlights. BUT, problem is, they blocked out too much of the light, an LED bulb by-the-way, so I got rid of them. Too many people said my brake lights are out, soooo bye-bye blue dots. Better safe than sorry.
  29. Lucky444
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 1,151


    Nothin' like that sweet purple glow coming from glass lenses with blue dots in 'em.
  30. What was the bulb? ten million candle power? It is impossible for the blue to be brighter than the standard red with the same wattage bulb, that is physics not opinion.
    Cosmo49 likes this.

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