Ive just realised ive never posted this up on this forum so here it is;
I decided that I wanted to convert my tail lamps on my compressor to give the JDM look, after seeing Noedel's conversion on the TOC a year so ago. I loved the look it gave to the rear end of the car at night and it looked relatively simple to do. What I didn't like about Noedel's conversion was the fact you had to disable the rear fog light and every year you would have to return the lights back to standard to pass a MOT. As I've messed with car lighting wiring looms of practically every car I've owned, I quickly hatched a plan of "how to do it" in my head.
This method allows you to have;
4 brake lights
2 fog lights displayed in the inner oem fog light area.
There will be no unwanted fog light symbol coming up on the dash everytime you brake, nor will all the lights light up when you turn the rear fog on. This way makes all the lights work as it should and it will have no problems going through an MOT like this :)
Heres a video of the lights working to give you a idea on how it will look ;)
Right first up, parts that you will require;
- 2 380 Brake light bulbs
- 4 5amp diodes
- Some very small screws + screwdriver
- 1.5mm/8mm drill bit + drill
- Soldering iron and solder
- A wiring connector from a scrapped Toyota (If you'd like two rear fog lights)
- Rotary tool with attachments
- 3m of 1.0mm 16A car wiring loom grade wire
- A selection of heat shrink in various sizes
- Some sharp side snips
- 4 very small electrical o ring connectors
I shall start with the drivers tail lamp. First;
- Remove the carpet cover in the boot
- Remove the white wiring connector on the top nut, it just pulls off
- Remove the 3x 10mm nuts
- Pull the tail light off the car and remove the connector by pushing in the tab.
- Remove the inner light panel from the light assembly by pushing the two black tabs revealing this:
The left bulb here is missing - this is the fog light one to be modified.
In the fog light slot there is a metal tab which connects to the bottom of the bulb. As we will be using a 2 point bulb we need to remove this. So I used a pair of side snips to cut the tab at the top
Using a flat head screw driver lift the tap up to allow the whole piece to simply lift out of the bulb slot. Then push the tab flat again once its removed, leaving you with this cut out bit of metal ;)
Drill a 8mm hole in the back of the bulb holder for the new wires to pass through.
Once that is done, take both of your 380 bulbs and solder a 10cm piece of wire to each of the connectors to the bottom of the bulb
One will be the "high/brightest" connection and one will be the "low/dimmest" connection. I used a power probe to find out which was which. You can fit the circuit board back on the car and test each wire to see which is which if you do not have one of these :)
Now you need to solder in a diode to the circuit board, please make sure you solder this in the correct way and to the correct metal paths as I have it shown here. The metal paths need to be either sanded or slightly ground down as they are galvanised and if you don't do this the solder wont stick very well. I used a rotary tool with a small grinding stone to do this as well, I was being lazy
Next up you need to cut off the two plastic heads on the circuit board. I did this with a cutting disc on the rotary tool again to give it a clean finish. I've then drilled a 1.5mm hole into the plastic below to allow me to fit a very small self tapping screw into it. I've marked on this photo where I have done this and also which one is for either the high/low bulb wires go onto.
Once your happy with your lengths of wire and that they go to the right place (you can always fit the circuit board back onto the car and test which one is high or low) you now need to fit two small ring connectors to the bulb wires. Again I soldered these in and heat shrank them to aid conductivity and protect against short circuits.
The tiny self tapping screws I used
And the drivers side unit all complete and ready to go :)
The passenger side is just a reversed copy of the drivers side, so copy exactly what you did to the drivers side. ill just put the pictures up for a reference.
Even though there is a fog light bulb holder on the passenger side tail lamp, the hole for the bulb to access it is not cut out. I used a engravement attachment on the rotary tool as the outline for this hole is already there. All i did was "engrave" this mark deeper and deeper until it cut through. I then used a small sand paper wheel on the rotary tool to clean up the edges and you'll have something that looks like this :)
There will be some bits that fall into the light housing itself, you can use a combination of a straw attached to a hover to remove these. If you cant get it all out that way, like i couldn't, I ended up swilling out the light 5-6 times with loads of water and leaving it to dry on a radiator.
(BOTH SINGLE/DOUBLE FOG LIGHT VERSIONS)
To the drivers side tail lamp connector. The red wire with silver dots is the fog light wire.
Remove the electrical tape further up the wiring loom to give some more access.
About half way up this photo above you will need to snip the fog light wire (red with silver dots)
IF YOU ONLY WANT A SINGLE DRIVERS SIDE FOG LIGHT:
Solder in a diode like shown and heat shrink the wire
Rewrap the wires in electrical tape and refit the lights back onto the car. Stand back and enjoy the JDM look your tail lights now have :good:
IF YOU WANT DOUBLE FOG LIGHTS:
Take an electrical connector you've cut from a scrapped toyota. This one below happens to be a CD player connector out of a avensis, which had lying around from when i converted my E11 tail lights (I've already chopped most of it up as you can see )
And cut out a connector pin
Solder in a diode noting which way I have it facing and add a good length of wire to it - Enough to travel from the left tail lamp to the right.
Then heat shrink the connection
Go to the passenger side tail lamp connector and you will notice that one of the six pins on the connector is missing (3rd from top) This is where the fog light wire would normally run. You need to pop open the little clip on the connector using a small flat head screwdriver and feed the connector pin into the slot. Make sure its the right way around!!
You will feel it clip into place and then all you have to do is secure it back into place with the original clip :)
I then wrapped some electrical tape around the wires at the connector end to make them all hold together securely.
Remove the boot rubber seal from around the boot carpet and bottom trim. Remove the two 10mm bolts off the lower boot plastic trim and pop it off
Pop the carpet out for some room at the sides of the lights - these are held in with one body trim clip each side.
Feed the wire that you've added to the passenger light connector to the drivers side connector. I tapped it in at various places to the original wiring loom that runs along this panel to make sure it doesn't get trapped or caught on anything.
Once at the drivers side tail lamp connector, you need to solder in a diode with the wire located as shown! The extra fog light wire must be above the diode (opposite side to the connector) otherwise you will over load the diode.
Heat shrink the wire and diode
Wrap the wires back up with electrical tape.
Refit everything back onto the car, stand back and enjoy the JDM looking tail lights :good:
If anyone is unsure of any part of this guide or feels like i haven't explained parts in enough detail - let me know and ill try to improve on it :)