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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So this past weekend I decided to paint the inside of my headlights. I will give a brief description along with some photos. As usual, everything came apart fairly easy and wanted to tick me off when reassembling, but overall was worth it. If there are any questions afterwards, please feel free to ask. You will need:

1. 10mm socket
2. phillips screwdriver (Normal size and a small one would be best.)
3. masking tape
4. plastic or plastic wrap (I used saran wrap.)
5. butter knife that you don't intend to use for buttering in the future.
6. paint of your choice (acrylic enamel is best as it does not require clear coat.)
7. make sure your oven is big enough to fit your headlight.
8. foil/baking sheet is optional, but I prefer to use it.
9. oven mits or gloves you can use to handle the hot headlight.
10. silicone sealant (your call)
11. rubber gloves with no powder or anything (recommended)


Ok, to begin remove the two 10mm bolts that hold the headlight in place. I also removed the snap clips that hold the front grille as well to give some extra wiggle room. After removing the headlight assembly, remove the bulbs and covers for parking, high, and low beam. Then remove the two little rubber/foam vent hoses, they just pull right off. There is one external phillips screw that will need removed as well. It is in the corner of the lens by the parking light. Just a note for the high beam, to release the wire harness from the bulb, there is a little button that you push on the plastic part of the harness. After all of the above has been removed, you must use the masking tape to cover all of the openings. Not sure why, but when I googled this process, that's what they recommended. At least it will help keep debris out. Now for the fun/scary part. put your oven rack close to the bottom. Mine was on the setting that was not sitting directly on the bottom. Line the rack with foil and set your oven to Bake at 220 degrees and wait for it to preheat. You want it at 220 when you start this process. Once the oven is to temp, you want to put the headlight assembly in for 8 minutes. Now I have seen some that say you can use 250 degrees and bake for 15 minutes.:eek: I stuck with the 220 for 8 and have no compaints and no melted headlights.:) Make sure you have a heat resistant, soft surface to put you headlight on so that you can work with it, but not scratch it. As soon as you take it out, take your butter knife and just start working it around the seem, prying up. It is actually fairly forgiving, but be careful, you just want it up enough to pull it apart. I had to bake twice for a total of 16 minutes, to get mine fully apart. After getting it seperated, make sure not to touch the inside of the reflectors or lens. No one wants to spend there time removing fingerprints from the inside. As a matter of fact, I would recommend using rubber gloves, that do not have powder or anything on them. That would make life easier IMO, but I did not have those. You want to cover the black part of the assembly with plastic to keep dust and things out. Be careful if you thin plastic like a shopping bag or saran wrap; if you push down to hard, it is a pain to get off of the black glue later. Now you can move over to clear part and remove the two screws that hold in the parking light reflector. There are two little nubs on it as well, but it should just pull out once the two screws are removed. Once that is out you can remove the orange reflector if you choose, I did. Now there are 3 little screws left that hold the plastic trim to the clear lens. After you remove them, you will have to work the piece to get it out. There are some little nubs that help hold it in and the black tacky glue likes to grap it as well. I try not to touch the surface of this too much since I will be painting it and we all know what oily fingerprints do to paint.:mad: Once the piece is out, you should cover the clear lens with plastic as well to keep debris out. Now you can wipe down the plastic trim and paint however you like. I did not use primer and I did no sanding of any kind. Just wiped down with a lint free cloth really well, I actually did use rubber gardening gloves for this part now that I recall.:rolleyes: After I was sure they were clean, I just sprayed them with acrylic enamel paint from Advance Auto. I put 4 coats on each one. 2 really light ones and two medium ones. I will warn, to be extra vigilant/careful as there is a certain curve that is very hard to get to. Make sure you are in a well lit area so that you can ensure proper coverage. Would be best to hit that hard area first then do the light coat on the rest. Again, just my opinion and hind sight is 20/20. Follow the directions of the paint. I waited 10 minutes between each coat and then 2.5 hours after the final coat for it to cure before handling. It recommended 3 hours minimum, but who are we kidding, like I have that much paitients. I immediately reassembled everything and stuck back in the oven at 220 for another 8 minutes to do the final push back together. Everything else is the reverse of removal. Some have recommended using a clear silicone to fill any gaps that may exist. I have not yet done this step, but will play it by ear as time goes by. Your call. Hope this helps someone. Another note, make sure the lens assembly isn't touching any of the sides when in the oven. And the headlight was hot to the touch, but not scorching hot. And now the pictures. I am not posting them all here, but if there is a particular one you don't see and want to know if I have it, just ask. The first is a before picture and the second is after. I used Black high gloss paint.
 

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Dam, beat me to it! Looks flipping awesome tho!! :D I think this mod really makes the car look aggressive and stylish. It really brings out the black on the front of the car! I'm really scared to do this mod, but I def will try it now that someone has taken a crack at it! Looks amazing man.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. I agree, it looks a lot more aggressive. I don't know why, but everything I do to this car, I end up sweatin bullets until it's over. First mod I did was removal of the CDV and that was some scary/nightmarish stuff there.:eek:
 

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Wow what a difference. Damn that looks good.

Thanks a lot by the way! You put one more thing on the already huge list of stuff I want to do. ;)
 

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the sedan already has the black "eyeliner"... it's only on the KOUP..
 

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looks great :D would look even better with the new r8 strip i posted but is apparently deleted lol
 

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Thanks Anthony, went through the gallary and you right the 4 doors come std. with the black "eyeliner"....will try and get my local dealer to swop out my koups headlights with a 4 door....Lets hope he can pull it off....Roballans still looks more aggressive tho
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Could I use a heat gun vice the oven? I feel like I may be more in control in that situation.

I tried to use a heat gun first. I'm not saying it's not possible, but I don't think anyone would want to wait to find out. By the time you get one part heated up, the other part will be cool. I just bit the bullet and put in the oven. The plastic didn't even seem soft, just the adhesive was easier to cut into and seperate. Good luck.
 

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Roballan could you post a closer pic of one of the headlights? I want to replace the amber reflector with a silver one like the Aussies have but I'm guessing thats gonna be pretty difficult. If it looks pretty good by just taking it out, I guess I'll just do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Roballan could you post a closer pic of one of the headlights? I want to replace the amber reflector with a silver one like the Aussies have but I'm guessing thats gonna be pretty difficult. If it looks pretty good by just taking it out, I guess I'll just do that.

Here ya go.
 

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Now if someone can do a projector write-up :rolleyes:...
 

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DOT states that red and amber must be visible from the side. I got ticketed with clear heads and tails. Make sure your Turns are visible from the side without them being on....
 
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