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Ellipsoid Reflector

Posted by wodcutr 
April 23, 2009 04:35PM
Hey guys, I thought I would post this to see if anyone has ever had any experience with this. I had a broken low beam ellipsoid lens and have acquired a used replacement lens. I removed the old lens which was in there quite well with all the adhesive and all, and noticed that my reflector was dirty. I cleaned with a good glass cleaner and some of the reflective material came off in spots. These of course were the same spots that looked bad to begin with so my cleaning only exacerbated the problem. Anyway, I thought I read somewhere on the old BEN about some paint you could buy to recoat the reflector. I have also read about a method of aluminum foil lining that reflector too, but it seems to me that that is a classic case of African engineering and I would prefer to fix it right the first time. Other than spending big bucks for a new reflector is there anything I can do to fix this. What kind of paint would I use if that is the fix? Thanks for the input!
April 24, 2009 07:47PM
OK, I have been reading on some other forums and one thread talks about smoking ellipsoids by painting the reflector black. To me that is no longer a reflector at that point, but they say that the reflector does not reflect light it only blocks light. Now I am really confused. In one thread it says that putting foil in there really helps the light output and the other thread says painting black does not effect light output. Something is bogus! What say you?
rkj
April 24, 2009 11:24PM
Quote
wodcutr
OK, I have been reading on some other forums and one thread talks about smoking ellipsoids by painting the reflector black. To me that is no longer a reflector at that point, but they say that the reflector does not reflect light it only blocks light. Now I am really confused. In one thread it says that putting foil in there really helps the light output and the other thread says painting black does not effect light output. Something is bogus! What say you?

If you're talking about the hood that is in front of the bulb, its just a blocking thing so the lamp does not blind on coming drivers. Would a different color make a difference in lamp intensity? I don't know confused smiley
April 25, 2009 04:48AM
Quote
wodcutr
OK, I have been reading on some other forums and one thread talks about smoking ellipsoids by painting the reflector black. To me that is no longer a reflector at that point, but they say that the reflector does not reflect light it only blocks light. Now I am really confused. In one thread it says that putting foil in there really helps the light output and the other thread says painting black does not effect light output. Something is bogus! What say you?

from what i have read, with an HID setup the reflector clarity is not a major issue due to the brightness of the bulb. i haven't read anything about successfully smoking ellipsoids by painting the reflectors black. there is a certain part of the reflector in the smiley setups that absorb light in order to produce the straight line cut-out look for the light pattern.


April 25, 2009 08:36AM
Why would anyone want to decrease the light output of their headlamps? confused smiley
April 25, 2009 11:14AM
I don't know...form over function. They have smoked ellipsoids for sale from many companies so I don't know if those are all HID or regular bulb. All I am really after is whether I should even worry about the reflector part needing to be reflective or not. If all the reflector really does is look pretty then I will just replace the glass - no worries. If it helps project light then I need to know how to fix!
April 25, 2009 01:50PM
Quote
wodcutr
I don't know...form over function. They have smoked ellipsoids for sale from many companies so I don't know if those are all HID or regular bulb. All I am really after is whether I should even worry about the reflector part needing to be reflective or not. If all the reflector really does is look pretty then I will just replace the glass - no worries. If it helps project light then I need to know how to fix!

The lenses have nothing to do with being HIDs or not, so none of the smoked ellipsoids you see for sale are "HID", but they can be used with an HID setup.


April 25, 2009 04:32PM
A smoked ellipsoid is not doing anything to the lens itself, it is blacking out the reflector surrounding the bulb behind the lens. So if what you are saying is true that smoked lights are sold to use regular bulbs in, then the reflector in my ellipsoids do nothing except look pretty!
April 25, 2009 08:29PM
Quote
wodcutr
A smoked ellipsoid is not doing anything to the lens itself, it is blacking out the reflector surrounding the bulb behind the lens. So if what you are saying is true that smoked lights are sold to use regular bulbs in, then the reflector in my ellipsoids do nothing except look pretty!

smoked ellipsoids have smoked lenses, not reflectors.


April 26, 2009 02:48AM
Actually, the smoked ellipsoids are the same as regular ellipsoids, but the have a black plastic + shaped divider inside them. By doing this, they are able to produce the look without reducing the light output. When you look at them, the silver part reflects the black part to your eye, giving the appearance that they are tinted. When the bulb lights, it reflects off the silver part and is projected forward with very little light loss due to the divider.

The reflector (silver part) does project the light forward, and painting it WILL reduce the light output (in addition to causing considerably higher heat to the housing and possibly leading to shorter bulb life). That being said, a little silver flaking off the reflector will not cause a discernible difference in light output. I would just put them back together as is and call it a day.
April 26, 2009 08:45AM
Andy, you are absolutely right if you are talking about the high beams. They do have a + shaped divider inside that is black and it functions as described. I am talking about the low beam light. The reflector on the low beam is not silver, it is black. That is what you are seeing when looking through the clear lens. If they smoked the lens then the light output would really suffer.
April 26, 2009 01:50PM
Quote
wodcutr
Andy, you are absolutely right if you are talking about the high beams. They do have a + shaped divider inside that is black and it functions as described. I am talking about the low beam light. The reflector on the low beam is not silver, it is black. That is what you are seeing when looking through the clear lens. If they smoked the lens then the light output would really suffer.

Andy, I have seen the "crosshair" style of smoked lights, as you mentioned, but there must be other ways the smoking is done.

In this picture, the crosshair is easy to see in the highbeam, but how is it done in the low beam? I don't think they darken the reflector, I think its a thin coating of something on the lens.



April 26, 2009 07:48PM
I think the low beam has a black piece around the center ellipsoid focusing ball. I believe the lens is clear, with a donut shaped black plastic piece behind it that gives the effect. The light output is not effected because it is all being projected by the ellipsoid ball that does not have any tint or plastic in front of it. I could be wrong as I haven't seen one in a while, but I seem to recall looking at them and deciding that is how it was done.
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