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T4 : Battle Across Time (2010 to present)

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  • Originally posted by regcheeseman View Post
    .....you'll be buying all sorts of pointless manufacturing kit...
    Yep, a quick trip to Dunelm to invest in some upgraded equipment. Colour coded too which was a real bonus.

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    • "Armed" with my new tooling and after a quick call to the polycarbonate supplier I fired up the oven for a second run with Proto1.... I was advised to stick it in at the same temps as before rather than use a heat gun, so once the temp had time to build up to 190°C I used my new tool to reshape the trimmed test cover. The silicon gloves allowed me to gently caress the material around the pattern. Its looking bloody good now, even rolling under the lip.....
      I was getting too excited far too quickly.
      Cooling phase now, before I pull it out.

      Last edited by Activ8; 14th June 2019, 01:50 PM.

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      • The UV protection has melted second time through and based on the length of the sides the material has stretched (worth bearing in mind for Proto2, cutting it short might get it to just roll over the glass bead.) Would the thicker 1.5mm or 2mm material form just aswell as this, but with the add strength? Cutting the 2D plate with tabs might provide under bonnet securing points and fixing points too.

        Three of the corners have formed around the lens perfectly, the bottom left hasn't, albeit a lot has "ironed" itself out from the first run. This corner could be a good place to cut the cover back a little (if used as a coloured lens cover) to aid fitting/removal as the other three are so good a fit?

        The glass lens remain hot for a while but during the course of cooling I'm easing the plastics off from around the edges.


        I wasnt quite careful enough and Proto1 split at the edge but no to worry. Ive taken a couple of corner close-ups to show the fit with little to no effort on my part it's simply the heat making the material like cloth. That bottom left corner has rolled itself into shape but the lens face is perfect. A little trim behind the glass bead and it looks like and clips over the glass lens as it should. The non-UV clear protector has stuck to the lens but easily removed. The UV protector might be a different matter, so it'll have to come off next go.
        Last edited by Activ8; 14th June 2019, 03:17 PM.

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        • Thought I'd just post a link to SlimJims Blog regarding the upgrade of his ProjektZwo lights and the link to the supplier of the LED units used.
          Just T4s : SlimJims Projekt-Zwo-Upgrade
          SlimJims LED Upgrade Supplier

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          Last edited by Activ8; 14th June 2019, 08:26 PM.

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          • Looking at sizes for the twin headlights using the nearside template

            1 x 120mm + 1 x 140mm, or


            2 x 120mm,

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            • Great fun in it Active I'm watching with interest mate.
              You wont form the plastic sheet without a vacuum mate, an airbox with a vacuum cleaner is all you really need to form plastic sheets up to 1mm. Anything thicker, and a vacuum cleaner can't cope. If you take a look at my early prototypes you'll see that I was forming the plastic using an old quartz heater that I made, and my vacuum was a powerfull vacuum cleaner, something like a shopvac.

              Take a look at YouTube, there's loads of DIY vacuum forming tables on there.

              BTW ....................... love that little bench vice!





              TURK

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              • Originally posted by TURK View Post
                Great fun in it Active I'm watching with interest mate.
                You wont form the plastic sheet without a vacuum mate, an airbox with a vacuum cleaner is all you really need to form plastic sheets up to 1mm. Anything thicker, and a vacuum cleaner can't cope. If you take a look at my early prototypes you'll see that I was forming the plastic using an old quartz heater that I made, and my vacuum was a powerfull vacuum cleaner, something like a shopvac.

                Take a look at YouTube, there's loads of DIY vacuum forming tables on there.

                BTW ....................... love that little bench vice!





                TURK
                As ever, respect Pascal - I did start to reread your thread on the other forum going back to 2008 and I thought to myself I'm following in your footsteps here!

                We wouldn't have to bother if you'd start to sell them!

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                • Originally posted by Activ8 View Post
                  As ever, respect Pascal - I did start to reread your thread on the other forum going back to 2008 and I thought to myself I'm following in your footsteps here!

                  We wouldn't have to bother if you'd start to sell them!
                  Too right mate! .................... the cost of perfection I guess! These things take time mate, and lets not forget, I'm learning this stuff as I go along as well. We're really really close now.
                  I had a completed set of Hella quads on my van Lulu over 4 years ago, they were absolutely superb! Making a one-off set is the easy bit, I could of stopped there, 'I'm alright jack' I've got mine sort of thing .............. but actually fabricating what could pass as a 'product' is the hard bit! That lesson I learned along the way.





                  Pascal

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                  • Originally posted by TURK View Post
                    Too right mate! .................... the cost of perfection I guess! These things take time mate, and lets not forget, I'm learning this stuff as I go along as well. We're really really close now.
                    I had a completed set of Hella quads on my van Lulu over 4 years ago, they were absolutely superb! Making a one-off set is the easy bit, I could of stopped there, 'I'm alright jack' I've got mine sort of thing .............. but actually fabricating what could pass as a 'product' is the hard bit! That lesson I learned along the way.





                    Pascal
                    The cunning plan..... I will be making (read: bodging) a single set so keep me on the list will you.... The one thing that's opened my eyes in the last 3 days (because I'm looking) is the prices of quality European lighting.... 4 lamps and it's really serious dosh , money I'm not spending on a crappy van not after spending 20% of the budget on silicon oven gloves!

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                    • Yeah, the costs of materials and parts is astonishing!!! Good quality comes with a price unfortunately.

                      One of my first prototypes was designed around cheaper headlight units, but that really defeats the object ................... if there's no gain in lighting performance ( which there wasn't ), there's no point.

                      You can currently buy after market T4 headlights for about 160 quid a set these days ( usually Taiwanese or Chinese ), and they're still making money. That tells you just how poor those units are! Just the Hella units I use in my project cost more than those entire sets!



                      TURK

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                      • Originally posted by TURK View Post
                        Just the Hella units I use in my project cost more than those entire sets!
                        They've come down massively over the last 11 years, proper bargains now.... NOT!

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                        • After 3 days of erhum, loosely termed "research", I've purchased four LED lights this morning.
                          The Hella sites are really good at explaining the principles of feeding electricity into an element or an LED then charging a lot money for their creations.
                          You really do learn a lot ,...... I then trawled their catalogues, identified a handful of choices and began sucking in air as I sought and found the pricing. Ouch!
                          I'm on a budget, so, could I buy second hand or deinstall them from a modern car brands headlamps? - but its a risky proposition and almost as pricey as buying the individual units if indeed they could be removed then reused?
                          I'd sent out Friday a few emails to gauge the Taiwanese/Chinese/Malaysian options, anyway after several email exchanges with my "go to" Chinese contacts we've agreed on the supply of 4 budget but warrantied LED headlights. I've had to compromise a little but in the main its current tech, 3 year warranty (same as a car brand or 5 years with Hella although they sell a DuraLED with lifetime warranty).
                          The lamps I'd want from Hella are simply too expensive for this build, but theres always a MkII in a few years time!

                          Heres the advantages for going down LED route rather than a Halogen and Bi-Xenon upgrade
                          Low energy consumption
                          Long service life
                          Impact and vibration-resistant
                          Reduced heat build-up
                          No maintenance or cleaning costs
                          Mercury-free
                          Good glare limitation
                          Inertialess switching and modulation
                          High-quality light projection
                          Numerous designs (can be used almost everywhere)
                          Individual light source configuration
                          Light temperature remains during dimming
                          Light colour can be regulated
                          Low production costs
                          Increased light output per chip
                          Extremely few early failures
                          Very compact dimensions
                          No UV or IR radiation
                          Low power consumption
                          Directional light – Lambertian radiator with 120°beam angle
                          High saturation

                          Hella - LED Headlights Information
                          Last edited by Activ8; 17th June 2019, 03:58 PM.

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                          • Had another attempt at budget thermal forming today. Staying with the A3 sheet size but removing the two protective layers, oven to 180° and let it do its thing for 20 minutes using the clean nearside lens as it's template.


                            After 20 minutes the polycarbonate had almost fully formed around the lens. The downside after removing the "bake" was the cracking I could hear.

                            I could see through the formed poly lens that the glass lens had started to delaminate it's outer surface causing tiny shards to break off during the cooling. I need a mould. During the cooling process the polycarbonate shrinks a little and the corners "grip" the glass with tiny folds. It stays warm and malleable for a minute or two so you can begin to release the glass.




                            The formed lens isn't as well shaped as the 1st attempt as it seems to be affected by the corners folding also possibly due to the time in the oven small air bubbles have affected the lens face. Not to worry, next test I'm cutting the polycarbonate to the shape of the lens +% for this shrinkage. I drew around the foil template made last week and it being only 1mm thick I could easily trim the sheet neatly with scissors to the shape desired.

                            Last edited by Activ8; 21st June 2019, 02:02 PM.

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                            • Delivery this morning.
                              Spotted these in the week and invested. I could piss about with various pots, bottles and glassware for years and thought this would be a shortcut either as a former / pattern for a polycarb twin cover or just fit them to my van. It's heavyweight ABS Projektzwo twin headlamp design for the shortnose. The short nose and longnose P2 lighting arrangements are different , shortnose 120 & 140mm only halogen lenses whereas the longnose has 90 & 120mm halogen or combo xenon lamps. I was quoted £100 ish to have the twin polycarbonate covers made up. Slightly cheaper for a clear T4 oem unit so all options are on the table.


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                              • I've been running up the batteries on solar panels yesterday and today 20V @ 5A from 5 of these little beauties.....
                                Last edited by Activ8; 3rd July 2019, 07:08 PM.

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