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Old 11-04-2013, 04:27 PM   #1
Tom Cavallaro
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Default Sealed beams for model a.

Has any fordbarners ever converted thestock cans tothe sealed beams? I'm finding the need for more light at night. I've read articles on using the beam under the oringinal lense, and most say don't do it. I find often getting caught driving in the dark leaving car shows of some distance from home. Is it possible to find a 6 volt beam that would fit right in removing the lense.
thanks Tom
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Old 11-04-2013, 04:44 PM   #2
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I recently did the reverse on my 6 volt positive ground Model A. I removed my sealed beam and replaced them with the original style CP bulbs. I found the sealed beam were drawing too much from my battery. I haven't driven at night to determine the difference in light output.
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Old 11-04-2013, 04:55 PM   #3
Peter J
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Tom,
I'm not sure who makes them but I have the exposed sealed beam conversion on my 29. I think I put out of "wanted" on the Swap Meet. Lot's of folks have changed back like Ryan so they're out there. I don't have battery issues but have a good gen.
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Old 11-04-2013, 04:59 PM   #4
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

The UVIRA reflectors are said to produce light equivalent to sealed beams. Brattons has them.
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Old 11-04-2013, 05:33 PM   #5
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I changed to a 6 volt alternator and completely fixed the night driving problem.
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Old 11-04-2013, 06:59 PM   #6
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

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I got the halogen/reflector kit that the vendors sell. Can't complain.
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I think I may still have the adaptor to convert your headlights, you are welcome to them (if I can find them) for postage only. But you will be un-impressed.
First, try to find 6v sealed beams, you may find them at some motorcycle shops, or tractor shops, and they are harder to find. I think the regular bulbs are equal to the sealed beam bulb.
Second, they just look horrible. Not to be picky, I'm far from a fine point person, but that classic look is gone.
I bought Halogen bulbs from Hirsch supply. These do not require any modification, take your old bulb out, this plugs right in.
WARNING You CANNOT touch the bulb in any way. The oil in your fingers will cause damage to the coating of the bulb. They come packed in a foam holder to handle them. You have to save these holders, in case you want to remove the bulb.
They are not cheap at about $40/ bulb. I am going to be honest, the first set I had; I put them in and I took a test drive. The first bulb blew in the driveway, the next went about 3 minutes later. I was upset and called them. They were very nice to deal with and they sent me a replacement set ASAP. I have now used them for 3 years. They are about 40-50% brighter.
They also sent a follow-up email with an apology, and to check on the results. That's service.
There are several different bulbs on the market, but look close, most require you to alter the socket and reflector, and make changes to the setup, so if you have a problem you cannot just unplug the bad light and put in my old bulbs in my toolbox.
You have to order the correct bulb for your car, either 6 or 12 volts, and generator or alternator.
I do not have any extra draw on the new bulbs. They carry headlights, tail / brake lights that are very bright also. I have converted almost all the bulbs in the car. I did get a set for my cowl lights, but they were just too bright.
The company to deal is with Hirsch Automotive 396 Littelton Ave, Newark N.J. 07103 or www.hirschauto.com 800-8282061. Chances are if you order Halogen bulbs from a catalog, you will get Hirsch bulbs, there are advantages to dealing directly with the manufacturer.
I really like mine.
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:49 PM   #8
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I bought a set of headlights which had been converted to sealed beam. The old guy who did it used parts from other old cars. I was able to find 6 volt sealed beam bulbs on line at a reasonable price. I did have to convert to an alternator to keep up. I am very happy with them. Keep in mind that sealed beams are now two generations back. I see LED's are now available.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:34 PM   #9
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

My 30 Coupe had a sealed beam conversion when I bought it over 55 yeara ago, never had a problem with stock Gen keeping battery charged.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:00 PM   #10
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Mine came with sealed beam head lights, they were the bug eye style. I purchased the behind the glass mounts from Synders, as I do not like the bug eye look, they worked great before and still do behind orignal A lens.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:14 PM   #11
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Being used to the daily 'Driver' of the 1940's & '50's, that had them, I struck a fondness for them, both for the nostalgic 1940's look and for their definite lighting improvement. I changed the stock headlites on my 1930 Coupe to the inserted (adapter) and 6 volt Sealed Beamed lights. I was very happy with them and drove with them daily for the thirty years that I had the car. New technology came along during that time, but I liked the 1950's vintage look and has happy with the seal-beam performance. I never had any issues of battery drainage. "If it ain't broke - don't fix it".

That being said, for my other daily driver, my '28 Phaeton, I stayed strickly stock, polishing up the original silver reflectors, and had acceptable lighting. If I were to ever get dissatisfied, I would most definitely buy a pair of Bratton's new reflectors. A pit pricey, but well worth the money if you do much night-time driving.
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Old 11-04-2013, 10:18 PM   #12
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Decent original reflectors and sockets with direct replacement halogen bulbs, preferably from Classic and Vintage Bulbs from Australia. You will NOT need an alternator.

The bulbs from CVB were better built then the Hirsh bulbs (which are what the suppliers like Brattons probably are selling).

The next step is to properly focus the bulbs so the light goes where you need it.

That will let you have enough light to run 55 MPH at night on back roads.
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Old 11-04-2013, 11:10 PM   #13
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I converted my lights back to some Argentinian reflectors and the 32cp bulbs. I find that focusing the lights and proper adjustment is important. I am happy with the results.
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Old 11-05-2013, 01:32 AM   #14
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

I too went back to stock selling the retainer set for 50.00 on ebay. They still sell the kits, but I see only the ones for behind the lens.
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Old 11-05-2013, 05:08 AM   #15
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Thank you for the responses I can get six volt bulbs but as others have said...and returned to the origanal or halogen, I don't want to jump too fast. Those of you that have gone to halogen seem to be very happy. I have the stock setup and bought the latest polished reflecters and followed the book on adjusting. I never get what they show in the book. I've
Adjusted the screw so many times its tight. I liked the halogen idea but didn't go there because I don't want to go to an altinator. Any specific number that I should look for?
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Old 11-05-2013, 05:35 AM   #16
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Cavallaro View Post
Thank you for the responses I can get six volt bulbs but as others have said...and returned to the origanal or halogen, I don't want to jump too fast. Those of you that have gone to halogen seem to be very happy. I have the stock setup and bought the latest polished reflecters and followed the book on adjusting. I never get what they show in the book. I've
Adjusted the screw so many times its tight. I liked the halogen idea but didn't go there because I don't want to go to an altinator. Any specific number that I should look for?
OK, first what were the shape of the filaments on the bulbs, flat or pointed? Yes it does make a difference. Am I to assume you bought the reflectors from Bratton's with in the past few months?

There are halogen bulbs that don't need an alternator BUT any halogen bulb will not focus properly due to filament location in the reflector, brighter yes but not focused.

Bottom line, it's your car and you can do it as you wish.

Headlight alignment procedure.
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Old 11-05-2013, 06:05 AM   #17
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Mike, My bulbs are from Brattons...large flat top 32-50 and I keep the reflectors polished. I will try to do it again using your method of adjusting...the 2 degrees down might be the trick I've needed. Very rarely do I drive at night but when I do 30 mph is it...just can't see well enough to go faster...and you know what that does to everyone behind.
Thanks Tom
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Old 11-05-2013, 06:55 AM   #18
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Brattons has new reflectors that have the correct shape as opposed to ANY other reproduction reflectors. These are aluminum plated the same plating as is used for telescopes.

Bulbs with a pointed filement /\ as opposed to a flat - one also makes a difference.
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Old 11-05-2013, 05:58 PM   #19
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Mike, the filaments do have the point...I thought you were referring to the shape of the bulb. I will try to adjust the lights to your instructions.
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Old 11-05-2013, 06:07 PM   #20
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Default Re: Sealed beams for model a.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Cavallaro View Post
Mike, the filaments do have the point...I thought you were referring to the shape of the bulb. I will try to adjust the lights to your instructions.
One last thing in case you did not know and for those that did not realize, the low beam filament goes on top of the center high beam filament.
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