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Author Topic: 1964 GM PD4106 Tail and brake lights  (Read 5875 times)
Cosmo
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« on: June 22, 2014, 12:33:44 PM »

 Ok I'm new here, new bus nut, so this is the start of Waitin' for the Bus. Starting with the rear first. Currently I have no tail lights or brake lights and since I'm going to chase wires to find out why, I want to go ahead and update the old units with LED tail/brake lights.  Looking for anyone who changed over, supplier, part numbers, etc. would be helpful, I have looked at a lot of web sites and LED lights. Interested in replacing the marker lights too. Anyone out there have the stock reflectors looking for those. I have pictures of my bus just need to load them on the PC. Thanks!
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« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2014, 01:44:02 PM »

welcome cosmo, I changed my 4106 to all leds. the front turn and overhead stock lites I bougt the 3/4 leds. they have bulbs so you can use them for turn and marker. I put 5 in each one 4 and one in the middle. these lite up nice and you still have the stock look.the back I put 2 8 in the stock holes, and 2-4in in the bottom .the 2 center ones are backup. these I bought from super brite . goggle leds.the side lites I put on have 12 in each one plus I added 12 of the 3/4 across the bottom of the front bumper. these lites just need a 3/4 hole drilled and they snap in. good luck jim.
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jim&roenie seagraves sebring fl. 4106-3083
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« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2014, 03:00:09 PM »

   Check your wiring in the back at tailgate and the harness, especially any connectors, as they receive moisture in rain or salt spray. Especially ground connections. Many times the wires have been cut and spliced for tailgate removal for major engine work. They originally had an amphenol style connector to facilitate this, but most are long gone.
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« Reply #3 on: June 23, 2014, 04:11:14 PM »

Mine were out for a while and it was just a bad ground.  My whole engine lid had been replaced.  If you can, get a copy of the owners manual.  It has all the diagrams in it.  Mine also has a lot of damage in the breaker panel under the driver's side window.  I went thru and loosened and retightened the connections on the buss bars.
Ed
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Ed Spohr/1962 PD4106/8V71/4Speed/Zion,Ill/Far North East Corner of Illinois
Cosmo
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« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2014, 05:38:44 PM »

Thanks for the replies. I need to take a picture of this spiders web and post it. Does anyone sell replacement lights that are LED? Part numbers and company would help. Thanks
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« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2014, 02:34:21 PM »

each light as originally built consists of a connector, a socket, a bulb, a reflector, a lens and possibly a bezel.

LED replacements for the bulb are crossreferenced to the number which is printed on the side of the brass base of the bulb.

Anyone you order from should have the information at hand.

edward
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Jeremy
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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2014, 03:33:35 PM »

Be aware though that just putting those led 'incandescent equivalent' bulbs into an existing refector and light fitting is considered to be very bad practice. It's a subject which has be discussed on here previously and I remember that Sean Walsh (of Odyssey Neoplan fame and all-round electrical guru) had very strong opinions on the legality and wisdom of the idea; basically the point is that those led bulbs don't project light in the same way that incandescent bulbs do, and that therefore putting them in a reflector designed for an incandescent bulb doesn't work.

Far better is to get complete led light units of the sort made by Trucklite, Hella, Rubbolite and many other respected names (or, if you're cheap, perhaps the unbranded Chinese units sold on Ebay etc - but not the standalone bulbs).

Jeremy
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« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2014, 04:33:31 PM »

Be aware though that just putting those led 'incandescent equivalent' bulbs into an existing refector and light fitting is considered to be very bad practice. It's a subject which has be discussed on here previously and I remember that Sean Walsh (of Odyssey Neoplan fame and all-round electrical guru) had very strong opinions on the legality and wisdom of the idea; basically the point is that those led bulbs don't project light in the same way that incandescent bulbs do, and that therefore putting them in a reflector designed for an incandescent bulb doesn't work.

I wasn't here for that discussion and Sean is certainly a first class resource BUT

Proper LED replacement bulbs have emitters on the sides which actually do a better job of using the reflectors than incandescent bulbs.  Draw a picture.  Draw an arc for the reflector.  Inside the curve of the reflector arc, draw a point for the incandescent bulb filament.  Now draw arrows from the filament in all directions.  See how much of the light gets spread out to the sides instead of aimed in the direction the fixture is pointed.  The lens provides partial control of the wasted light.  Now do the same drawing with a line sticking up from the arc about 1/3 of the way.  Draw arrows straight out from that bar.  See how they all strike the reflector -- no wasted energy and the light through the lens will be as well aligned with the direction the fixture is pointed as possible.

It's high school physics.

edward
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« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2014, 05:03:42 PM »

I think we all know how reflectors work, but that doesn't chage the fact that a Christmas tree of leds stuck on a bayonet socket - no matter what angle they're pointing - simply doesn't replicate the single point source that is the filament of an incandescent bulb. I can't quote the specfic code or regulation concerned (as Sean was able to do), but to me it's very significant that the reputable brands such as those mentioned earlier don't have anything to do with the 'led bulb' market, despite the obviously massive potential it apparently offers

Jeremy
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« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2014, 06:23:18 PM »

DOT approved LED retrofit lamps do exist, but they aren't cheap.

http://www.carid.com/lumen-car-bulbs/lumen-plazma-led-lights-10064441.html

Jeremy is right--  Most of the cheap eBay LED bulbs are not DOT approved.  The only time anyone will care about DOT approval is: #1 vehicle inspections which RVs are generally exempt from --and #2 accident investigation.  No one will care or know the difference until one of those two things occur.  Each individual RV owner needs to decide what risk mitigation is worth.  For me, it is worth the cost of DOT approved lamps.

I did bought my DOT-LED lamps from Batteries Plus Bubs for $20 each.  I couldn't find the product on their website.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2014, 06:29:05 PM by sparkplug188 » Logged
Cosmo
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« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2014, 07:43:03 PM »

This is all good discussion, I have no intention of just swapping out "bulbs". I want to replace the whole unit. PO owner made a lot of changes on this bus, that keeping stock tail lights doesn't matter, now the DOT thing does. I know I will be dealing with going from two wire leads to three wire units. From what I've read, the LEDs put out more light and that is what I'm interested in, to be seen! If that's not the case, then I'll stick with the old lights. For now I'm taking this weekend off and going to get some wind on the bike. When I get back, it will be peddle to the metal on getting the rat nest settled and the tail end lit up. Thanks for the info.
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"I have bus fever, kinda like Harley crotch"
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John Z
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« Reply #11 on: June 26, 2014, 05:56:26 AM »

My use of leds has been on the interior of the bus, where there is huge savings on the battery while not on shore power. But about 6 yrs ago i had to put leds in the front turn signals on my '04. I could not locate the original sealed beam units. I bought DOT units from Napa. Very nice units with two levels of intensity: running lights and turn signals. The added cost of buying a good product is soon forgotten when it performs just how you want it to.
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« Reply #12 on: June 26, 2014, 08:22:37 AM »

We tried just putting the led bulb in the tail lights on the 4107.  Napa sold them as direct replacements.  Might as well just left them out.  Took them back.  We then bought the 4 or 6  inch led lights that the trucks use and mounted them in the tail lights.  They worked great and the look remained the same.  At the time they were about $14 each.

Don and Cary
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will4104
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« Reply #13 on: June 26, 2014, 05:25:59 PM »

I replaced my taillights on my 04 with leds from global http://www.globalindustrial.com/searchResult?searchBox=&q=led+tailights
fit right in place with the rubber grommet. No issues with them so far...  FWIWAHTH
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William Fenske
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« Reply #14 on: June 26, 2014, 10:10:16 PM »

I think we all know how reflectors work, but that doesn't chage the fact that a Christmas tree of leds stuck on a bayonet socket - no matter what angle they're pointing - simply doesn't replicate the single point source that is the filament of an incandescent bulb. I can't quote the specfic code or regulation concerned (as Sean was able to do), but to me it's very significant that the reputable brands such as those mentioned earlier don't have anything to do with the 'led bulb' market, despite the obviously massive potential it apparently offers


The mass production tolerances/variations plus the fact that the filament in a bulb is in no way a true point source negates the issue of whether LEDs replicate a point source.  Using a point source in a not-to-scale sketch was just for simplicity's sake.

The regulations I am familiar with basically require testing against some performance specification today.  Older regulations such as those for sealed beam headlights may also specify specific design features.  this varies from place to place and over time.  The regulations referred to in a discussion years ago may or not be in force today.  I was unaware that the earlier discussion involved regulatory issues.

The reputable manufacturers you mention make their money selling high profit complete OEM and replacement units.  They do not manufacture The LEDs used in their products.  Why ever would they wish to be in the low profit bulb replacement business ?

Other posts here give reports of success and of failure using LEDs as bulb replacements.  They also report DOT approved and non-approved, so I suspect there are definite quality issues going the replacement bulb route.

This leads me to think it would simplify matters to use the complete replacement units to eliminate potential quality issues.

edward
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Iceni John
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« Reply #15 on: June 27, 2014, 08:02:38 AM »

Wasn't Odyssey Sean talking about HID retrofits of headlights, not LEDs?   Putting an HID capsule in a reflector designed for incandescent lamps is A Very Bad Idea, but LEDs are a different matter altogether.   As long as the LEDs don't produce more scatter or glare than the original lamps, what's not to like?

John
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« Reply #16 on: June 27, 2014, 09:59:43 AM »

I'm not sure there is such a thing as a direct-replacement HID bulb because they require the electrical supply to be upgraded too, and come complete with their own wiring harnesses and ballasts.

I was operating from memory before but just tried putting "sean led bulb" into the search box at the top of the page, and immediately found not just one but several previous threads where Sean talked about the illegality of the LED bulbs. As I said before, the "What's not to like" is simply that the reflectors are designed around a single point source of light which the common Christmas-tree type of LED bulbs can't replicate - if you have a light source (actually multiple light sources) which aren't at the focal point of the refector, the beam pattern will obviously suffer. High School physics, as someone said

But that isn't to say that the latest high-wattage LEDs similar to the sort now used in headlights couldn't overcome the problem by providing a true single point source of light at least as powerful as an incandescent filament

Jeremy
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« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2014, 12:08:40 AM »

Jeremy,

My point about incandescent bulbs is that, while for simplicity's sake you talk about them as being a point source, in actual fact this is absolutely untrue.

The light source in an incandescent bulb is a tungsten alloy wire more or less 3/8 inch (close enough to 1 cm.) long depending on the wattage which, due to manufacturing techniques/tolerances, is mounted at some varying length and distance from the theoretical focal point of the reflector.

This is a good reason why Sean punted to the regulatory case against LED replacement "bulbs.". Ow that DOT approved versions are available the old argument has no basis.

edward
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Cosmo
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« Reply #18 on: July 01, 2014, 07:46:02 PM »

Thanks Will, looks like I will give those lights a try. Th e y look like exactly what I'm looking for.
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"I have bus fever, kinda like Harley crotch"
1964 GM PD4106 - 2473
DD V8-71/ Spicer 4 speed/ Wind
"Waitin' for the Bus"
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