Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Grand Junction, CO
Just before Christmas I installed a set of Cibie 7" headlamps (French company - the lamp is made in Belgium) I got from Daniel Stern. I was getting ready to spend the time between Christmas and New Years wheeling in Moab and still had to install my Hella Rally 4000's so I opted to stay with a 60/55 bulb (no time to install relays). One look at the factory wiring told me that anything more would demand a relay.
At any rate the Cibie lens are glass and the headlight unit weighs a whole lot more than the stock unit. I ran a Narva 60/55 +50 H4 bulb and the difference, with no increase it wattage is phenomonal. The problem with the JK headlights isn't so much the bulb as it's s****y lens. With the Cibie on low the close range spread and illumination is great and the reach of the high beams amazes me. Now I can see that an 85/80 or a 100/90 would do a lot of good with these beam patterns. I think I could get away with running this much bulb because the Cibie lens has a European E pattern and has a sharp cutoff to the left to avoid blinding oncoming drivers. I'm gong to install 2 relays and only use the marginal stock wiring to trigger the relays. I'll run 12 gauge straight from the battery to the fused relays and then to the bulbs.
FWIW the 100w Hella 4000's with the Cornering Beam lens do a great job off road and when I lit them up on a loney stretch of freeway (along with the highbeams) - Wow! The cornering beam has about a 300 yard reach but is almost as wide as a fog beam.
As an aside on the headlights. I could never get the stock JK's adjusted so that they functioned OK on both Low and High beams. If one was good the other was bad. One night my wife commented that we got flashed as often on low beam as high. The beauty of the Cibie is the the patterns are cut into the glass such that when the lows are properly aimed the highs are too. The problem with Hella replacement lens is that like the stock JK lens the there is too much vertical displacement between the high and low beams. I know it's more money than just throwing a supposedly brighter bulb in the JK headlight but I think it's a much better solution. The headlights are 75 each, the bulbs 19 each and you need an adaptor set from Ford (about 90) to convert from the stock H13 socket to H4 - total is about 280. If you want to go to a higher wattage bulb figure another 30 to 50 for relays. I think this is the "elegant" solution to the JK's headlight problem.
08 JK Unlimited Rubi, Auto, 5.13 gears, RE 3.5" SF lift w Bilstin shocks, BFG 35" KM2's, AEV Pintlers, Alloy USA CM front axles w CTM Ujoints, Superior CM rear axles, JE Reel 1350 driveshafts, RockHard Front Bumper w Warn PP w 3/8 syn rope, RockHard rear bumper and tire carrier, RockHard rocker guards and skid plates, ARB diff covers, ORE C gussets and LCA skids, Tuffy Drawer, Cobra 75, Cibie headlights, Hella 4000 Rally lights, 60" HiLift, PullPal winch anchor, Engle 45 Fridge.