1995 Toyota Tacoma HID retrofit

Posted: January 31, 2011 in Projects

I’ve had my 95 Tacoma for many years, and have been putting a lot of money into it lately to restore it. A couple years ago, I got the whole truck repainted black, and had all body damage fixed, and replaced the bumpers and interior carpet and other random items. I also upgraded the headlights to HID’s, but the headlight housings (standard 7×6 housing) were horrible, and didn’t spread the light the way I wanted it to. They also came with this “projector lens” gimmick inside them, which was worthless.

I found http://www.theretrofitsource.com by complete accident, and fell in love with their products. After a ton of research, I decided to buy their bi-xenon PNP kit (http://www.theretrofitsource.com/product_info.php?products_id=178)with FX-R projectors, since I already had ballasts. This came with projectors, shrouds, 4300k bulbs, and adapters to hook up the D2S bulbs to my existing ballasts.

They started out like this:

I started by cutting open the housings (the glue was a silicone glue, so the oven bake trick would not work), then painting the inside of the housing black.

I then cut a significant portion of the back of the housing off, with a nice level cut

I bought a 4″ sewer pipe cap for a mounting template for the projector:

I cut the end off the cap, sanded it down, then cut a hole in it for the projector, using a cardboard template I had made.

I then mounted the projector inside the template, and checked the fit. I also trimmed the apollo shrouds so that they would fit the projector, and inside the housing. I painted everything flat black again.

Here, you can see what the projector looks like in the housing, before doing the actual mount.

Using some bolts, I mounted the projector to the template.

Final coat of flat black paint (upper housing looks dimpled because I had some paint issues, and had to sand a bit with the dremel)

I then fused the housing and template together with plastic epoxy putty. I also sealed the front glass back to the housing.

Here they are in the truck before putting the grille back on

Here’s the light pattern from the projectors (pre-adjustment):

Here’s the comparison of the light pattern, next to my 2008 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution with factory HID’s. 25 feet away:

IMO, the cutoff of the Lancer, is better than the FX-R projectors. The cutoff is so hard and defined, rather than being soft and set a much different angle.

I’ve got a few more pics to add. I forgot to take pics of high beams, and of course, the finished product in the daylight. We just got a snowstorm that moved in, and now the truck is dirty as hell!

I plan on doing this same setup on my motorcycle (2008 Honda CBR600RR) in the near future.

  1. james brown says:

    can you post some more photos? maybe with the front end on? and some more photos of the build?

  2. Ash says:

    “I then cut a significant portion of the back of the housing off, with a nice level cut”

    How did you get a cut that was perfectly level. This sounds like it would be crucial or the cut off May not be aligned with the other headlight.


    • Ricky says:

      Measurements on all 4 sides from the front of the housing, then a hacksaw to get the most level cut possible. You’re right that of course there will be some variance between the two, but that’s corrected with post-install angle adjustments. It doesn’t really matter if the housing itself is exactly level compared to the other, unless of course it’s visible and looks stupid. All that matters is that the projected light is level after making angle adjustments. The idea is to get them as close as possible inside the housings, then make the fine adjustments after they are installed.

      • Ash says:

        Thanks for the reply. Your retrofit came out very nice. I may ask more questions once or start mine. Thanks man!

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