My first retrofit projectors (Mini H1) - Lexus IS Forum
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post #1 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 01:39 AM Thread Starter
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My first retrofit projectors (Mini H1)

Hey everybody, this is my first retrofit project and I went cheap with most of the components as this was a learning process for me. Shouts out to a member on here, TobiasSing, whom inspired certain parts of this retrofit.

First step was to pick up some used headlights in whatever condition because I didn't want to ruin my only pair. I decided to go with an affordable H1 Mini projector from The Retrofit Source (TRS) along with all the other accessories like shrouds, rings, butyl glue etc.

So I baked my headlights and removed the lens (scariest part of the install) and immediately started taping the housings before I spray paint it.



Here's how they turned out, not as polished as TobiasSing's but good enough to me



So I had to modify the backside of the reflector bowl so I can get the lock nut threaded deeper. Once I had the projectors in, I slapped the headlights back on the car for a test fit and aiming to make sure my projectors were centered







After I was happy with the alignment, I applied the Butyl to the headlights and rebaked them to seal em up. Here is the end product on the car:





I'd say it took me over 10 (working) hours to complete this job because it was all new to me and I was doing a lot of reading in between. It has been one of the most satisfying mods I ever done to any car and I encourage anybody to try to do it themselves. Of course, I am by no means an expert now, though I would be more than happy to offer any advice and receive any tips/advice/criticism.

Thanks!
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Last edited by vietcious; 10-07-2014 at 11:14 AM.
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post #2 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 05:51 AM
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Pics aren't working for me. Really want to see the finished product.
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post #3 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 07:53 AM
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Yeah fix the pics, I wanna see!
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post #4 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 08:12 AM Thread Starter
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crap... dropbox links work for me, but it looks like for me only. I'll find a way to fix it. Stay tuned!
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post #5 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 08:32 AM
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Nice. I have a spare set of lights I want to retrofit.

-'03 MSM IS 300 5-Speed w/LSD - #REKT. Parted out
-'05 TCM Scion xB
-'08 Mazdaspeed3 Sport - Zoom-zoom.
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post #6 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 09:41 AM
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Also how did you open your headlights? On some other post I saw they had them in the over for 45 minutes!?!? On a previous set I did for a couple of VWs it was about 5 minutes...
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post #7 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pre runner View Post
Also how did you open your headlights? On some other post I saw they had them in the over for 45 minutes!?!? On a previous set I did for a couple of VWs it was about 5 minutes...
The DIY to opening the headlights is on this forum. 45mins is way too long btw.

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post #8 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 10:28 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Also how did you open your headlights? On some other post I saw they had them in the over for 45 minutes!?!? On a previous set I did for a couple of VWs it was about 5 minutes...
PICS ARE UP GUYS!

The first headlight I baked @ 315f for 10 minutes... I found out this was way too hot and way too long. I ended up melting part of the housing...the only good part is the Lens came off very easily.

Also, it's a good idea to put the headlights on cardboard instead of directly on the racks. The racks will heat up and melt into your housing and the Butyl glue will drip to the bottom of your oven (I learned the hard way)
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post #9 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 10:46 AM
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Looks good. How much did you spend in total?

-'03 MSM IS 300 5-Speed w/LSD - #REKT. Parted out
-'05 TCM Scion xB
-'08 Mazdaspeed3 Sport - Zoom-zoom.
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post #10 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 10:48 AM
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Nice man! Those look crazy.
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post #11 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 11:11 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by RazoE View Post
Looks good. How much did you spend in total?
I bought the following:

used headlights for $75
Mini H1 projectors $20/pair from here They were $20, now $30
B-stock shrouds $10
Rings $10
Butyl Glue $15
JB Weld Steelstick $6
eBay H1 HID kit $22

You can buy pretty much everything at the retrofit source, one-stop shop if you will.

Everything totals to around $158 bucks and a whole lot of labor.

If you guys want to do this on the cheap and learn, then I would recommend buying the parts I did above.

I will eventually get a better set of projectors that take D2S bulbs so I can use our stock ballast/wiring. I know everyone says "do it once, do it right" but I dove into this project not fully understanding how everything works. It's one of those things that you can read and read and read forever but until you actually get your hands dirty, you won't fully grasp the concept. At least that was the case with me.

Last edited by vietcious; 10-08-2014 at 01:46 PM.
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post #12 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 02:57 PM
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Hey good job on your first retro! Came out nicely.

2002 IS300 5MT - 615whp - Haltech PS2000 - GT4088R - R154 - TRD LSD - SupraTT Cable Throttle Conversion- Varex - LS430 Retro
2004 Optra/Forenza 2.0L - 225 whp - Haltech Sprint500 - CT12B - Professional P&P - Getrag F28 6spd - KW V3's - FX35 Retro
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post #13 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 05:50 PM
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You got those head lights for $75?? Wow what a steal, this has to be a record for lowest $$$ retrofit lol.

Interesting to see how low the projectors sit in the reflectors. Looks good overall!

You should raise the driver's side cutoff to match the other side (if you want)

Definitely put the lights on a metal baking sheet or something. And the lights come apart at 230 no problem, I tend to leave mine in for a long time at lower temperatures just to prevent any kind of damage. Higher heat and faster heatup/cool down times will ruin the chrome inside and ruin the lens eventually.

Thanks for the shoutout! Though you really didn't do anything like me except for the black primer + chrome rings lol
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post #14 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-07-2014, 07:38 PM
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Looks good, Does your auto level still work?
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post #15 of 35 (permalink) Old 10-08-2014, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiasSing View Post
You got those head lights for $75?? Wow what a steal, this has to be a record for lowest $$$ retrofit lol.

Interesting to see how low the projectors sit in the reflectors. Looks good overall!

You should raise the driver's side cutoff to match the other side (if you want)

Definitely put the lights on a metal baking sheet or something. And the lights come apart at 230 no problem, I tend to leave mine in for a long time at lower temperatures just to prevent any kind of damage. Higher heat and faster heatup/cool down times will ruin the chrome inside and ruin the lens eventually.

Thanks for the shoutout! Though you really didn't do anything like me except for the black primer + chrome rings lol
LOL, I had the SAME can of black primer you had in your pictures... and since this was a budget retrofit, i figured why not. And yea, I copied your chrome rings

I did end up adjusting the lights once again after everything was sealed up. The headlight lenses I bought werent exactly the clearest, so I think it affected the light output
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