For Science! HIDs For My Lancer… Not So Smart But I Just Had To Do It.

A week or so back, a colleague of mine at work sold off some bits and bobs off his previous Civic VTi, which included a pair of HID H4 headlight bulbs and HID H11 foglight bulbs. My training supervisor got hold of the set but after putting them into his own Civic VTi, he found that he didn’t like them all that much and passed the stuff on to me to see if I’d like it on Aska.

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This is one side of the bulb set that I got. 

The colleague who owned the parts were selling the bunch for just Php 500 or a little below $10, and I figured I’d like to give it a try. At that amount, there is very little in the way of loss in my opinion, and would give me something to do with Aska.

A couple of days back, I got the set and split it with another friend of mine who coincidentally needed the H11s for his Jazz (Fit). I got the headlight set and made a test fit the night I got the stuff. Earlier tonight though, I scraped some time to do the install job.

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My old man set up a work light for me. How nice, now I don’t have to work with a flashlight held by my mouth. 

Before I get to the juicy parts,  let’s talk about headlights for a moment.

HIDs or High Intensity Discharge (lights) are kind of car lighting system that uses gas to generate its light. Think of it as your CFL (compact flourescent light) that you use at home, but adapted for use in a car. The lights first came out with luxury and high end vehicles in the very early 2000’s and towards the middle of that decade, it became the rave among car enthusiasts due to it’s very bright and while light. Some are so bright that along the edge of the light, a band of blue often appears to the eyes hence some people calling HIDs as “blue lights”. While it’s a good add on for a car, it’s not always a very good idea to simply swap it into those that use reflector headlights.

Reflector headlights use a polished surface inside the housing to reflect light from the bulb on to the road. This is used for a majority of vehicles on the road today, but they are steadily being replaced by projector headlights.

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On the left side is a projector headlight, and on the right is a reflector headlight. This is a common arrangement, and is called a dual lamp (or light if you would) system.

Reflectors are great, they work well enough and fairly cheap compared to projectors. However, most reflector headlights were designed to work with halogen bulbs and HIDs were originally meant (still are actually) for use in projector headlights. The problem is how the light is “thrown” into the road. In reflector headlights, there is a lot of light scattered around and are not exactly the most efficient in a sense. Also. reflectors work best with regular halogens with “normal” color temperatures (measures in K or Kelvin) of around 3600 up until around 4200 something. HIDs though normally produce white light, commonly around 6000K. This white light tends to get scattered much more easily, resulting in a light that appears bright at short distances but doesn’t have the “reach” of conventional halogen bulbs in the same reflector housings.

Enter the projector headlight – as the name implies, it projects the light onto the road much better than reflectors. This is due to the glass lens at the front that focuses the light and throws it further. One of the good things about it is that it doesn’t produce as much glare as a reflector headlight would. HIDs work very well in projector headlights and many cars come with it standard, although some lower spec models may use halogens instead of HID.

All A17x Lancers use the familiar reflector headlight with flutes on the glass, ostensibly to throw the light in a more predictable pattern on the road. It works great with halogens and works well in all weather conditions. Essentially all I’d be doing is change out the bulbs from halogens with the kit that I have now and hope for the best.

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This is half of the kit that I got and the parts are labeled. This one is supposedly rated for 6000K which means I’ll be getting a more white light than stock halogens. 

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A close up of the bulb I’ll be using. This one uses HID for the low beam and halogen for the high beam. This combo is often used for retrofits since a full HID kit is often very expensive. 

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Secured the ballast to the body using an existing hole on the body. I find it amazing that whenever I need to work on the car, mod something and would be needing a hole, there would almost always be one where I need it to be. Conveniently, there is even a metal screw for me to use. Also if you’d be interested to know, “chong” or “tiyong” is derived from the Spanish word “tio” which means an older man, usually an uncle. It is a common term of endearment among men in the Philippines. 

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I had to “mod” the headlight lock ring to get it over the back portion of the bulb. Because of the wires and other things in the way, simply threading it through was not possible. I snipped one portion of the ring and made the wires go through the ring. Now my headlight is ready to be installed into the back of the headlight housing as one would normally change bulbs. 

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Done installing the passenger side. Here I’m testing the output, which suffice to say looks better than the halogen on the left. Repeat the process for the left side, which is just a wee bit trickier since the battery is in the way. 

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A comparison of the lights from the front.

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Both babies are in. Notice the greenish, bluish tint along the edge of the light.

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How it looks from the inside through my tinted windshield. 

Now, I would be the first to admit this isn’t exactly a super smart idea and it’s best to stick to whatever OEM parts were used or if in case of headlight upgrades, going with 90 / 100W Halogens would prove to be better on the most part. But I thought that I’d go with this for now, mostly for kicks. If I am to stick to HIDs though, I am looking to get lower color temps, probably around 4200K or something to mimic the beam and throw of regular halogens.

See the problem with white light in general is the lack of depth (as my friend put it) – this simply means that yellowish light throws further and has better contrast in the dark than a comparable white light. Still, I leave it entirely up to you guys to decide and remember to check local laws and regulations about headlight modifications. In most US states, I will get a ticket for what I just did, or even if I stick in 90 / 100W bulbs. Here in Manila where the roads are mostly lawless, this is fine. But in the interest of a better motoring experience, do check local laws before putting in any mods.

 

 

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An Open Letter From My Introverted Self To The World At Large

Good day my friend,

 

If you are reading this, you most likely know me in some way. I appreciate your company and continued existence in my life and to those around you. I’m sure you’re a great person in your own right, as is everyone else, but there is something I have to tell you that had always bugged me.

You see, you keep disturbing me. And it’s not during the times that I am in front of my computer working, on my car working or doing something that I would deem as the activities of a productive member of society. Rather, you disturb me during the rare moments of peace that I want to enjoy.

I know you see me with a smile quite a lot of the time, and that we’re chummy and chatty while we’re at it. I know you see me a loud and cheerful, bursting with life and ideas.

But you see, I also need peace and space.

There are times that I feel like I should not be disturbed, that I should be left alone with my thoughts and my music. I know you see me constantly with my headphones, and I am certain you realize that most of the time, I distance myself from large groups whenever those things are on my ears. It’s not that I dislike you, but at least for those moments, I feel like I do not need to share my mind with you.

Before you paint me as a prude and a snob, I would like you to know that I am not. As I mentioned previously and I will always say this, I appreciate your company and you being a part of the world I move around in. I would love to listen to you and your stories, but only at certain times of my choosing. And it’s not because I only find it convenient during those times, but it’s because I want some moments of peace for myself. You see, I need it to recover from the constant pressures of life or the demands of whatever it is I am working on at any given moment. I am deathly afraid of not being able to pay close attention to your stories, or reciprocate your enthusiasm for oral communication and I am equally afraid that I would turn you away if I am not able to respond to you properly.

I greatly respect you, and again I appreciate whatever it is you have to share. But whenever I feel that I want to be left alone, I would appreciate it if I you would allow me to be so. It won’t make that great of a difference if we don’t talk together all the time, but it will make a big difference to me if I lose touch with the inner sense of peace I crave every once in a while.

If you see me with my headphones on, please don’t intrude into my voyage into silence. If you see me looking out in the distance, I would love it if you would not launch into your stories without making sure I am ready to listen and return your appreciation for that moment. If you see me with a book, looking through my phone, writing, playing on my guitar or any sort of activity that I am concentrated on, please do not inundate me with how your day is going. We can always talk at a later time when I am ready to interact and it just happened to be that at the moment you see me, I am not in any sort of mood to interact with the world around me.

Let me be alone with my thoughts, even for a few fleeting moments. The world already has us at its whims, at least allow me to get lost with the flow. I’ll definitely come out of it, but also at the time of my choosing.

 

Please my friend, leave me alone. I need it as badly as our innate need to breathe.

 

Your friend and mine,
Jo

Blankku # 1 : A Mindless Experiment With Form

__ sat in the light,

Waiting for the right moment,

To communicate.

___ sat in the dark,

Waiting for the right moment,

To send a response.

 

__ stared at the void,

As ___ smiled at __ person,

___ thoughts reached for ___.

 

~fin~

 


 

Ok, many of you may find this strange as to why I left blanks in the haiku. It’s a kind of experimental err more like “I just feel like I need to do this” style that I just thought about. We all know haikus are supposed to have seventeen syllables arranged in three lines. Some may comment that the blanks represent no words, meaning the things I wrote are not haikus since they technically do not have seventeen syllables each. However, I see the blanks as spaces that you, the reader, can fill out to make the haiku “work” for you. The blanks are inspired by rests in music – rests are notated and part of the beat but there are no notes played. I see this in the same manner.

I am not sure if I am making sense here, but have fun inserting whatever pronouns or words into the blanks. Hell, you may as well put “carrot” or “strawberry” or “potato” – as long as you are able to keep the syllable count, when you read it out, it still forms a haiku. But with the blanks, I want to call this as “blankku”. Get it? Shit I make bad puns. My sense of humor has left me tonight.

Whatever, I feel like I’m trying to talk smart here but my thoughts are actually a little muddy.

 

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