Low cost, no cut, no drill LED install - JeepForum.com
Search  
Sign Up   Today's Posts
User: Pass: Remember?
Advertise Here
Jeep Home Jeep Forum Jeep Classifieds Jeep Registry JeepSpace Jeep Reviews Jeep Gallery Jeep Clubs Jeep Groups Jeep Videos Jeep Events Jeep Articles
Go Back JeepForum.com > Models > Jeep Wrangler Forums > TJ Wrangler Technical Forum > Low cost, no cut, no drill LED install

ROCK BOTTOM prices on LIFT KITS at Rockridge4wd!! WANT TO Introducing MONSTALINER™ UV Permanent DIY Roll On Bed LineSavvy Billet LED Tail Lights

Reply
Unread 02-08-2008, 08:52 AM   #1
Dragon158
Registered User
2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Philadelphia
Posts: 372
Low cost, no cut, no drill LED install

I would have submitted this for a technical write up, but I posted it somewhere else first.

I've wanted to upgrade the tail lights in my Rubicon after the first week I owned it. But I did not want to cut a hole in a perfectly good tub, not after spending what I did for my low mileage 2004 Rubi. I shopped around but couldn't find a real no cut, no drill solution. So I came up with the idea to make my own tail light housings. I work as a heavy equipment/ diesel mechanic and began looking for something around the shop that I could use to fabricate my own custom housings. After a little thought I came up with a perfect & very cheap solution. A co worker had recently replaced an exhaust system on a large truck using 5" straight pipe and various elbows, he had to make a few cuts and had 2 feet of straight pipe extra. Before I did anything I did a test fit to see how the light and grommet would fit into the pipe, it was a near perfect fit. So I cut a 1 & 3/4" section from the piece of straight pipe, as seen below.

Then I had to fabricate a back for the housing, I cut a piece of 1/8" plate with the shop plasma cutter and made a 5" diameter circle.

Next I had to weld the newly cut circle to the 1 & 3/4" exhaust pipe section I cut earlier. I originally was just going to tack it in a few spots, because I thought I might have trouble getting a decent weld into the corners, but it welded pretty easy, so I did the entire piece. I also welded from the inside, because it needs to be smooth for the flush mounting. You can see it here after I painted it.

I removed the old tail light and used it as a template for drilling the mounting holes. I made both left and right housings at the same time so I could be sure that both would fit exactly how I wanted.

I had to cut the factory harness and wire in a new harness that I fabricated myself. It's pretty easy, 1 ground, 1 turn/brake and 1 running, for a total of 3 wires.

I was able to find small connectors in my shop to use to connect the new LEDs up with, but they can also be found at Radioshack. Because I had made the housing only 1 & 3/4" deep I had to cut and break the LED housing a bit. The new light was made to accept a plug, because the housing was so low profile a plug wouldn't fit, if I used the original plug the housing would have been 4" deep or better and it would have defeated the purpose.

I coated the back of my new fabricated housing with some silicone sealer, so it would act as a gasket and not destroy the paint under the housing after I mounted it. Then I installed them.



It was a pretty easy job, although it took me some time to gather up the parts and find the time to put everything together. I also installed LED reverse lights, I just cut 2 holes in the stock bumper and mounted them up. But I have yet to do anything about a tag light, I've been driving for 5 months now without one and have to get that done, before I get a ticket.
Here's a link to all the photos I uploaded, if you have any questions feel free to ask. Comments are welcomed, as this was my first real mod to my Rubi that didn't come in a box : )

LED Housing Photos

Dragon158 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 08:59 AM   #2
HTOR
Registered User
2000 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: MD
Posts: 382
neat idea! good job for thinking outside of the box
__________________
If you can build it, i will break it.
Team Crazy, and Mr Diameter Custom Machine.
"More Balls than you can shake your nuts at."
Jeep 1: 2000 Jeep Wrangler Sport - Its got goodies:)
Jeep 2: 1995 Jeep Grand Chero Limited - Its gonna go fast.
HTOR is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 08:59 AM   #3
hazmat
Registered User
2006 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: pa
Posts: 453
Got any pics with the rev lights?
__________________
http://s33.photobucket.com/albums/d5...nt=Hazmat2.jpg http://s33.photobucket.com/albums/d5...nt=Hazmat1.jpg06 x, 4.0 6spd d30 and 44 4.10's tru tracs fr and rear. bds 3in lift ,skyjacker st stab. jks bl and bmml, jks discos, 33x10.5r15 bfg mt's on black d's, src r bumper/swingout,
hazmat is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 09:05 AM   #4
Roughneck
Registered User
2006 LJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 410
Really nice work! Wish I had access to a plasma cutter. I'd like to see a daylight pic, kinda close to see what the finished porduct looks like. I agree about not wanting to cut a hole into my perfectly good tub.
cheers, LT
__________________
2006 Rubicon Unlimited
Wranglers lead the way. I mean, Rangers lead the way!
Roughneck is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 09:05 AM   #5
EvilM0nkey
Registered User
2002 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 1,754
can you take a side angle picture of the tail lights?
Great idea!
__________________
-Ross
EvilM0nkey is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 09:18 AM   #6
Panici
(O|||||||O)
 
Panici's Avatar
2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 1,174
I've been planning to do the exact same thing this summer!
__________________
_______
|_Jeep_|
(OlllllllO)


590nm Jeep TJ Build+Life
Panici is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 10:42 AM   #7
jcssurf
Registered User
2004 LJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 694
Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of LED's? They allow you to flush mount, which protects them off road. Which still kind of seems like a waste of time to me.

But if you were just looking for some high performance brake lights, they're nice. And kudos on the low cost fab work.
__________________
2004 TJ-L with 3-4" of lift, 35's, and no money

The Unlimiteds shall inherit the earth.
jcssurf is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 10:58 AM   #8
Zoom By You
Registered User
2001 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 812
Looks good!
__________________
2001 TJ Sport Amber Fire, Dual Tops/Dual Doors, 4.0, Banks Ram-Air, Banks S.S. Monster exhaust, five speed, NV3550, A.A. SYE/Tom Woods, 4:56 D30/D35, Detroit Truetrac at both ends, Solid diff covers, 4.5 R.E. Super Flex W/3.5 springs, adjustable upper and lower control arms, adjustable front and rear R.E. track bars, TeraFlex shock relocation brackets, R.E. Mono tube shocks, R.E. front stabilizer, R.E. 3/4" front spacer, 33 X 12.5 TrXus STS, M/T Classic-locks, ShrockWorks Rock Rails, Hanson 52" front bumper, EPi9.0 Superwinch with wireless control, Olympic rear bumper, Olympic Mountaineer rack, Bushwacker 6" Pocket Flares, Optima yellow top, IPF headlights W/ Fatboys, upgraded relay/wiring harness, KC Slims, Bosch rear lights, Garmin c550 GPS, Garmin 76S GPS, Cobra CB 148GTL W/Astatic Mic, Pioneer Sound, 3A Racing fire extinguishers. Manhattan Rated....
Zoom By You is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 11:03 AM   #9
nyy845
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: CT
Posts: 10
wow, good job. I like that they are pretty low profile
nyy845 is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 12:26 PM   #10
'B'wigstrailrig
Registered User
2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Ft. Campbell
Posts: 553
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcssurf View Post
Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose of LED's? They allow you to flush mount, which protects them off road. Which still kind of seems like a waste of time to me.

But if you were just looking for some high performance brake lights, they're nice. And kudos on the low cost fab work.
I dont think using LEDs is about flush mounting. I hate that my lights look like the ones on my boat trailer.
'B'wigstrailrig is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 12:32 PM   #11
wenkebach
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Baton Rouge, LA
Posts: 625
Excellent job! Where did you get the LED's, and how much did you spend on them?
__________________
2005 Wrangler Sport - 4.0L 6 speed
Rusty's 3" Lift, 33x12.5 Trxus MT's, JKS 1.25" BL, JKS BMML, Jeeperman Skidz
Jeeperman Bumper/Pre-runner Bar, Warn Winch, Front Aussie Locker
wenkebach is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 12:46 PM   #12
probesport
Registered User
1997 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Metro Detroit, MI
Posts: 328
not bad, nice work
__________________
Ken S.
1930 Model A Hotrod
1997 Jeep Wrangler TJ
1997 Ford Probe GTS Turbo 2.5l V6

I'll find you someday and when I do, you'll know its me.
probesport is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 03:38 PM   #13
beryl
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: sc
Posts: 1,223
Quote:
Originally Posted by 'B'wigstrailrig View Post
I dont think using LEDs is about flush mounting. I hate that my lights look like the ones on my boat trailer.
a lot of people get them because they have torn up their stock lights because they stick out so far...but i agree, i like the look of the round lights much better.
__________________
06x-6speed...hard/soft top, BPE's, 2" coils, 1" PA BL, 32 bfg mt's, 15x8 MT alloys, big daddy rocker guards, flowmaster, RE gen II discos, rear bumper and tire carrier, 10" MTX sub with 800watt kenwood amp, mossy oak mats, sony stereo
beryl is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 04:01 PM   #14
Zoom By You
Registered User
2001 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 812
I wonder if there is some type of 5" PVC or metal end cap, you could use, instead of having to make/weld the light housing....
__________________
2001 TJ Sport Amber Fire, Dual Tops/Dual Doors, 4.0, Banks Ram-Air, Banks S.S. Monster exhaust, five speed, NV3550, A.A. SYE/Tom Woods, 4:56 D30/D35, Detroit Truetrac at both ends, Solid diff covers, 4.5 R.E. Super Flex W/3.5 springs, adjustable upper and lower control arms, adjustable front and rear R.E. track bars, TeraFlex shock relocation brackets, R.E. Mono tube shocks, R.E. front stabilizer, R.E. 3/4" front spacer, 33 X 12.5 TrXus STS, M/T Classic-locks, ShrockWorks Rock Rails, Hanson 52" front bumper, EPi9.0 Superwinch with wireless control, Olympic rear bumper, Olympic Mountaineer rack, Bushwacker 6" Pocket Flares, Optima yellow top, IPF headlights W/ Fatboys, upgraded relay/wiring harness, KC Slims, Bosch rear lights, Garmin c550 GPS, Garmin 76S GPS, Cobra CB 148GTL W/Astatic Mic, Pioneer Sound, 3A Racing fire extinguishers. Manhattan Rated....
Zoom By You is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Unread 02-08-2008, 04:08 PM   #15
opiv
Registered User
2000 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: ny
Posts: 1,257
Nice work. You should start selling those as a complete kit before someone else does.Those don't look as easy to damage as the stock units since the housing is metal.
__________________
Get me my tools and beer.
opiv is offline   Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the JeepForum.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid e-mail address for yourself.
Note: All free e-mails have been banned due to mis-use. (Yahoo, Gmail, Hotmail, etc.)
Don't have a non-free e-mail address? Click here for a solution: Manual Account Creation
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.


Thread Tools


Suggested Threads





Jeep, Wrangler, Cherokee, Grand Cherokee, and other models are copyrighted and trademarked to Jeep/Chrysler Corporation. JeepForum.com is not in any way associated with Jeep or the Chrysler Corp.