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Discussion Starter #1
So, my neighbors have the first year of the first generation Ody. 1995, they tell me. And it still looks good. They were out washing it, so I sauntered over to give it a good look. Well what do you know: The thing has an LED third brake light in the spoiler. So here we are seven model years later (that's why I stuck this in the 2002 forum), and we're offered a single incandescent light in the spoiler? Oh, how I hate going backwards!

This is even more of a bummer since I got so excited (I'm easily excitable, don'tchaknow) when I read the Honda specs for the 2002 that included the LED third brake light. Never panned out.

Recently, I've been reading about how the extra cost of an LED array is easily surpassed when a single regular bulb needs to be replaced (the cost of the bulb and the labor to install it is more than the cost of any LED array). So if you add all the other benefits like LEDs being cooler, faster, (could be) brighter, less current draw, slim profile and long-lasting - there is just NO reason not to make as many LED arrays as possible as subsitutes for standard bulbs. But like usual, the problem is that nobody listens to me.


Thanks for letting me vent.

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-= Darell =-
2002 Ody EXL-Nav (TW) ordered, and now maybe coming on November 2!
2001 Civic EX
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[This message has been edited by darelldd (edited 10-14-2001).]
 

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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by darelldd:

Recently, I've been reading about how the extra cost of an LED array is easily surpassed when a single regular bulb needs to be replaced (the cost of the bulb and the labor to install it is more than the cost of any LED array). So if you add all the other benefits like LEDs being cooler, faster, (could be) brighter, less current draw, slim profile and long-lasting - there is just NO reason not to make as many LED arrays as possible as subsitutes for standard bulbs. But like usual, the problem is that nobody listens to me.


</font>
C'mon Darell- you know the only reason you want it is 'cause it looks so cool!


P.S. We listen to you!

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RRP EX Navi on the way-finally!
Forget world peace-visualize using your turn signal!!
GOD BLESS AMERICA!!

[This message has been edited by ody (edited 10-14-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter #3
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by ody:
C'mon Darell- you know the only reason you want it is 'cause it looks so cool!

</font>
You nailed me. I'm a slave to fashion.

<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">
P.S. We listen to you!
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Well, that's worth something!


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-= Darell =-
2002 Ody EXL-Nav (TW) ordered, and now maybe coming on November 2!
2001 Civic EX

[This message has been edited by darelldd (edited 10-15-2001).]
 

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Darell, I was thinking about the exect same thing a week ago, and checked that there are replacement LED brake lights for about $10 to 30 depending of the length of it.

I decided against it doe to the fact that there would be no way for me to make it look OEM, oh well....

If GM puts them on their cars, surely can do better than this.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I'm actually thinking that the OEM look would not be THAT difficult to attain. If I found the right array, I would just glue them in behind the stock red lense, and put an appropriate connector on the leads to plug into the harness. Or it could be hard-wired since the "bulbs" will never need to be replaced.

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-= Darell =-
2002 Ody EXL-Nav (TW) ordered, and now maybe coming on November 2!
2001 Civic EX
 

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That would work, but that ugly plastic lense is still there. I was thinking about another where the LEDs are connected side by side into a long chain. Like the ones on the first gen Ody and the GM minis. It is much longer than the stock red lense.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yup, I agree, but I think using the ugly lense is still as good as it'll get. My plan would be to get a string of the fattest ones that would fit in there, and just glue them in.

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-= Darell =-
2002 Ody EXL-Nav (TW) ordered, and now maybe coming on November 2!
2001 Civic EX
 

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I, too, have thought about building my own array of LED's. A piece of Plexiglas or circuit board could be used to mount the LEDs, force fit and glued in place. Three to five LED's in series, with a current limiting resistor, for each string with multiple strings to use the available space and provide increased brightness should work. One concern that I haven't decided upon yet is transient, high voltage suppression. An engineer friend of mine says anything powered on the car should be able to sustain a transient of 200V. This might require something like a zener diode and capacitor.

Any EE's out there?

Mel
 

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I used to work for an automotive lighting company, Sylvania. While this mod is definately "doable" for someone with some electrical know-how, you will need to make sure of two things:

1) The light output must meet a minimum level to be legal

2) Incandescent bulbs with a parabolic reflector are designed to throw light such that it is visable a certain angles to the left rear & right rear of the vehicle. LED's will change this equation. I'd think if you packed enough in there, you'd be OK.

Most people could do this mod but won't really know if it is legal, unless they actually get pulled over by the "tail lamp" police. It would probably never really be an issue unless you were in a wreck and the other driver claimed that they could not see your stop lamps.

I acually saw a prototype holographic CHMSL (center high mounted stop lamp) that was projected from within the vehicle onto a clear film placed on the rear window. A stop sign literally "floated" above the rear trunk. This was too cool!! Project was nixed since it could only be viewed straight on and not from the angle to the left and right behind the car as required by law.

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2002 MB EXL NAV
Cargo Tray, iVES, Zaino, Poron Reverse Sensors, Door Edge Guards, Fogs, & more ZAINO!!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Mel:
anything powered on the car should be able to sustain a transient of 200V</font>
Yikes. I can't believe that the stereo, the Nav computer, or really much of anything electronic would survive that. LEDs are tough little buggers, and I've used them extensively in 12V automotive applications with no problems yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Man314:
1) The light output must meet a minimum level to be legal
</font>
Interesting that you should bring that up. I'm guessing this is a state-mandated thing. As far as I can tell here in CA, you can legally tint the full rear window (behind a third brake light) with as dark a film as you'd like. I can't yet find the law that would pertain to this situation, but so far, everything points to there being NO brightness standard for that third light in CA.

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2) Incandescent bulbs with a parabolic reflector are designed to throw light
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As far as I can tell from my service manual, there is no reflector in that light. It is just an incandescent bulb hanging behind some red plastic (I'm sure the lense is magnified however). I would then think that a correctly aimed LED array, with the proper angle of diffusion, would be MUCH brighter that what we have now.

All excellent points that you bring up. And I sure wish I could have seen the holographic STOP you mentioned!


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-= Darell =-
2002 Ody EXL-Nav (TW) ordered, and now maybe coming on November 2!
2001 Civic EX

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[This message has been edited by darelldd (edited 10-15-2001).]
 
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