Project Red Turn Signals Suck

Prime Dec 23, 2016

  1. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Aesthetically there are two things that urk me about the 2nd gen truck.

    1) Orange dash illumination.

    There's fixes for that and I'm in the middle of dealing with it.

    2) Red rear turn signals

    North America is the only place on the planet that allows this. The US, Mexico, and Canada. That's it. Everywhere else on the globe, orange turn signals are required in the rear. And even more annoying to me is when vehicles like the X use a separate bulb and tail light area for the turn signal and its STILL red!

    From a personal perspective, I think it looks better and is safer. There's been studies on it and crap, but what it comes down to is that I think it looks better. So I started racking my brain on how to fix the issue.

    The solution dawned on me while shopping for replacement LED bulbs. Switchbacks in the reverse lights! You don't ever use your turn signals and reverse lights at the same time. And these bulbs can be both white and orange.

    Problem there is that it needs a dual filament socket to work. And the reverse bulb is a single filament 921.

    Enter the 7443. The smallest dual filament bulb you can get. But it still won't fit in the same size hole. But that's what a dremel is for.

    I bought a pair of 7443 sockets from eBay and a pair of 7443 switchback bulbs. You can see the size difference between the stock socket
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And the replacement 7443

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I began with a standard 2nd gen tail light. In this case, a used ebay purchase.

    [​IMG]

    Start by cutting the lip from around the reverse light socket.

    [​IMG]

    From here I shoved a microfiber cloth into the socket to keep the black plastic flecks from getting down into the light.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, replacement 7443 socket doesn't quite fit.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Enter the dremel.

    [​IMG]

    A few modifications to the 7443 socket.

    [​IMG]

    Cutting all the useless little fins off the sides so that it fits better in the hole.

    And we have success! There's just enough plastic left in there to allow the clips on the new socket to bind in place. It's an awesome fit. And so tight that there's no concern about moisture.

    [​IMG]

    Next is to modify the wiring harness to work with the new configuration. Since I'm moving the turn signals to the reverse light location it makes the stock turn signals non functional. So not to abandon it, I repurposed to a dedicated brake light.

    I cut off the stock reverse socket and just the green wire from the original turn signal socket. Leaving enough to solder to.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Soldered on the ground and reverse wire for the new socket to the stock wiring. Green is ground and red is reverse. Just like the factory stuff. Solder the input side of the turn signal wire to the black/white wire on the new socket and heat shrink/tape everything up.

    [​IMG]

    Extend the green wire from the old turn signal socket and tie it in with the green/yellow wire of the brake light circuit.

    [​IMG]

    Cut the green/yellow wire and splice in the new green wire.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Heat shrink and tape everything. It's ready to go.

    [​IMG]

    The harness on both sides is identical.

    So on to installation.

    I took some pictures of the bare harness to better illustrate function since cell phone cameras get washed out from the LEDs.

    Running lights:
    [​IMG]

    Reverse lights:
    [​IMG]

    Brake lights:
    [​IMG]

    Turn signal:
    [​IMG]
    Remove stock tail light, disassemble back interior, unplug harness for tail light.

    Install modified tail light.

    [​IMG]

    Look at that orange goodness!

    A final install picture on both sides.

    [​IMG]

    Overall, I'm very pleased with the way this came out. If I had to complain about something it's that the reflectors aren't tuned for the longer bulb. So the visible output of the reverse lights is not as much as with a replacement 921. But there's nothing I can do about that.

    A nice thing about this mod is that it's perfectly and easily reversible. If you bought replacement housings, most of them come with wiring harnesses. So you should have a complete stock set of tail lights and harnesses still. If for any reason you need to switch it back? No big deal.
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2016
  2. GPD605X

    GPD605X Lockers Installed Founding Member

    Messages:
    1,580
    Location:
    Gulfport, MS
    Nice!
     
  3. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Thanks. It's half finished. Only one side. I'll take some night time pictures to show the difference. I'm really stoked about it.
     
  4. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Running lights (no change)
    [​IMG]

    Brake lights (2 on the right)
    [​IMG]

    Turn Signals
    [​IMG]
     
  5. emtmark

    emtmark Wheeling

    Messages:
    418
    Location:
    San Fransisco Bay aRea
    Man why do you love so far away I want to learn this crap from you. Like magic for me.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  6. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Hahaha. It's just electrons and a dremel tool.
     
  7. Fromfrontier2Xterra

    Fromfrontier2Xterra I spend more money on comic books than my X Super Moderator Supporting Member

    Messages:
    27,516
    Location:
    Altoona, PA
    Lies! It's wool hats and bunnies! Don't you spoil you magical abilities for me.
     
  8. emtmark

    emtmark Wheeling

    Messages:
    418
    Location:
    San Fransisco Bay aRea
    Where's thy wand?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  9. emtmark

    emtmark Wheeling

    Messages:
    418
    Location:
    San Fransisco Bay aRea
    Mechanical Ventilation measles sense to me, therapeutic drug regimens make sense putting people back together make sense, wiring takes concentration. Man it just seems so easy tonyou!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Lol. My wife is an EMT. So I know how you feel. She starts talking medical shiat and my eyes just glaze over.
     
  11. jg8992

    jg8992 Hi, my name is Brandon Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,778
    Location:
    Spotsylvania, VA
    Diggin it. So reverse light will be pods in the bumper corners?

    Sent from my LG-H900 using Tapatalk
     
  12. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Stock reverse lights still functional.
     
  13. jg8992

    jg8992 Hi, my name is Brandon Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,778
    Location:
    Spotsylvania, VA
    10 4

    Sent from my LG-H900 using Tapatalk
     
  14. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Thats the whole point of the switchbacks.
     
  15. jg8992

    jg8992 Hi, my name is Brandon Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,778
    Location:
    Spotsylvania, VA
    Could you do this with the front turn signals? The ones closer to the grill? Have them run as running lights in white then switch to Amber when turning?

    Sent from my LG-H900 using Tapatalk
     
  16. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Yeah. You can get 3157CK switchbacks. They'd be white when you turn on the headlights and amber for turn signals. If you took lead for the running lights back to keyed power they'd be white any time the truck was on and still go Amber for turning.
     
  17. jg8992

    jg8992 Hi, my name is Brandon Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,778
    Location:
    Spotsylvania, VA
    Need that

    Sent from my LG-H900 using Tapatalk
     
  18. Creepy Cruiser

    Creepy Cruiser Sliders Site Sponsor Founding Member

    Messages:
    879
    Location:
    6 Feet Under
  19. caseycamby

    caseycamby Suspension Lift

    Messages:
    4,290
    Location:
    Marion, NC
    Awesome work as always, Jay.
     
  20. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Thanks guys.

    Both sides are done. Updated OP with final pictures and details on the harness changes.
     
  21. Prime

    Prime Some Kind of In Charge? Admin

    Messages:
    34,417
    Location:
    Denver-ish
    Oh, and if anyone decided to tackle this, don't be an idiot like me. On one of the lights I removed the entire harness so it left the top and bottom bulb holes empty. I didn't even think about it but the way that the dremel throws shiat around, well. I've got a few black plastic flecks in the housing.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    They don't mess with the optics. And no one is ever going to see them but me. Every time I open the hatch I'll see them. Heh.
     
  22. bigjim247365

    bigjim247365 Tentacle Monsters 'ᴙ Me Supporting Member

    Messages:
    26,418
    Location:
    Hainesville IL
    this write up.

     

Share This Page