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How To: How I made flush mounted tail lights

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Alright, this is my How To in how I made flush mounted tail lights. I've seen '69's with '68 light/tail light panels which looks great, but I really like that the '69's have larger lights. I've seen a handfull of '69s with flush mounted lights, but no how to's that I could find so I decided to tackle it.






Leather Gloves

Heat Gun



Plastic glue or epoxy

$10 (Need 6 total) 3m High-Strength Red Lens Repair Film (you may choose to paint instead)

$6 Clear overhead light panel plastic


1.) Started off with my old crusty cracked tail light lens.



Edited by THE EVIL TW1N

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2.) Using the grinder, cut the lens down to the base where the bezel meets the lens. You're going to want to cut down to the the area before it bevels inward in order to make room for the plastic panel piece you will be placing there. I used the Dremel after making the initial cuts with the grinder.





3.) Now cut the clear ceiling light panel plastic into rectangles about the size of the bezel measured from the outside. Remember to make it a little longer because of the curve. On top of that, you will want to make it a bit longer (atleast 1/4") in order for it to sit nicely in the bezel. You will see in the next few steps.





4.) I don't really have a picture of this step. Basically, you are going to need a buddy to help you out. While wearing thick gloves (I used leather), place the cut clear plastic on top of the base where they will be sitting. You may not be able to bend the plastic completely (I broke 2 clear plastic pieces) into place. Hold it there (USING GLOVES!) while you (or your partner) uses the heat gun to heat the plastic. A few seconds (roughly 12) should be all you need in order to get the plastic soft enough to bend. Hold it there in place until it cools.


This step might be a little tricky. Too much heat, and the piece really starts to warp and shrink. You just want it hot enough to where the piece will bend and keep its shape, but not warp and stay as flat as possible.





5.) Next, grab the the 3M red plastic repair and stick it on the flat (outside) area of the now curved lens. The red plastic is pretty tough and sticks very well. You may decide to paint the plastic piece instead. I felt this worked better, but to each their own.





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6.) After trimming the red plastic down to the roughly the same size as the panel piece, glue the panel piece onto the modified lens.





7.) Now, using the grinder, trim the excess panel piece off of the edges so that it is flush with the modified lens section.




Remember I said to make sure the bottom portion of the light is a little extra longer? Well, I hope you remembered. This is the portion that should be about 1/4" longer past the modified lens base. You want this to be longer so that the bezel is completely filled with the lens when you place the bezel on top.




8.) Now, just make sure the edges of the panel piece to lens base is sealed. You can use caulking or more glue. You're done!







You may choose to tint/darken the lens. The red is plenty (it does NOT look pink), but may look a little "too" red in daylight for some. I'll take a pic tomorrow, but I will probably tint them slightly darker. The first pic at the beginning of the thread was taken with the brake lights off (parking lights on) with just a regular wimpy bulb. This has made my rear lights MUCH brighter. It'll be interesting how bright they will be when I upgrade to LEDs in the next couple months. I'm in the process of changing out the turn signal switch, so I have no brake light photo to show you guys.

Edited by THE EVIL TW1N

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Don't laugh, but my car is in the very early stages of restoration. The lights aren't bolted in, they are just propped up for now. I spray painted the back panel satin black for reference (the tail light panel is getting replaced anyways) since that's the way I'll eventually run it.



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Been working with the lexan seems to be a go with it. I am going to attempt to keep my lenses clear with red led bulbs behind, wondering has anyone put a reflector in theirs??


I didn't do the flush lens mod, but when I replaced my lenses I painted the inside of the bulb housings flat white, which helped a fair bit.


Then later I swapped out the bulbs for LEDs, which was better yet.


It was a lot more than I wanted to spend, but nobody has come close to rear-ending me because they couldn't see my brake/turn signal lights in full daylight since I put these in, which is what prompted me to start the upgrade process. The white housing paint and hotter incandescent bulbs did help, but I have more peace of mind with the LEDs.


This is what I used in case anyone is interested:



I went non-sequential, but they carry sequential lights too.

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