Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Interest in brand new Hella Bi-Focus low beams?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Interest in brand new Hella Bi-Focus low beams?

    TLDR: The best low beam retrofit headlights are Hella Bi-Focus that I want to bulk order from Europe and sell for cheap.

    I’ve been looking at low beam replacements for my sealed beams, and the censuses across various vintage car communities that use 5 3/4” sealed beams are that the Hella Bi-Focus are the best available since the Cibie CSR lows were discontinued.

    The Bi-Focus was a joint development between BMW and Hella back in the early 80’s. What makes these the best is that they are dedicated low beams that use an H1 bulb, where all other low beams halogen replacements use H4 bulbs with dual filaments. The problem with H4 lows is that they use a reflector within the bulb itself to direct light for the low beam, which inherently makes it a worse performer then the Bi-Focus that uses the undirected H1 bulb, and uses the reflectors and glass in the headlight to direct the light. Someone claimed 55% more output over H4 low beams.

    I’ve read some reports that these are better then euro ellipsoids (especially because the reflectors are brand new and not 30 years old) but once I get my hand on some I’ll have to find someone with ellipsoids to do an in person comparison.

    Now the problem is they aren’t DOT approved, but no non-sealed headlights are for our cars, so they’re hard to find and expensive in the US. The only place I could find them is at rallylights.com for $105 each! Some of you may know I’ve been buying seat shocks in bulk from Europe and selling them on my website the past few years at www.bmwseatshocks.weebly.com so I’m thinking about buying these lights in bulk from Europe to also sell through the site.

    They are a drop in replacement for the sealed beams, just have to wire them to the stock harness. Since the H1s aren’t dual filament the low beam relay has to have a couple pins jumped in order to stay on while the high beams are on, which doesn’t requires any hacking of the wiring harness and is reversible. Of course I’ll have a full installation guide on my website like I do with the seat shocks if I decide to sell them. I think that by buying in bulk I can get them down to $75 per headlight, not including the H1 bulb, but those are readily available in various upgraded high output versions.

    If you'd like an email update, I've got a Google Form here.
    Last edited by rzmoser; 06-06-2018, 04:26 PM.
    New Seat Shocks for Sale

    #2
    i have the bifocus lows, theyre incredible, the other choice if you're worried about dot compliant, get oem projector lamps that are in good shape, then get 9012 hir bulbs for the low beams and 9011 hir bulbs for the high beams much more light, and in a dot compliant housing. If someone comes up with an H1 HIR, that would be the cats meow...

    Comment


      #3
      I may be interested depending on price.
      My Feedback

      Comment


        #4
        I just ordered a few sets from a supplier in Germany. I got the price down to $80 per headlight, so $160 for a set. Still a good deal I think.

        I'll report back when I have them available. If there is more interest I can do a larger order in the future.
        New Seat Shocks for Sale

        Comment


          #5
          I'm not worried about DOT compliance, I was just making it clear why they aren't available in the US but are in Germany.

          Does anyone have a recommended H1 bulb?
          New Seat Shocks for Sale

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by rzmoser View Post
            I'm not worried about DOT compliance, I was just making it clear why they aren't available in the US but are in Germany.

            Does anyone have a recommended H1 bulb?
            Lighting guru Daniel Stern recommends Narva Rangepower+50 H1

            Comment


              #7
              What are you using for the high beams?
              If it's got tits or tires, it's gonna cost ya!

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by DELPHINtimecapsule View Post
                Lighting guru Daniel Stern recommends Narva Rangepower+50 H1
                Seem to be sold out everywhere. Ideally I'd like to buy a great H1 in bulk so I can include them with the headlights
                New Seat Shocks for Sale

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Stanley Rockafella View Post
                  What are you using for the high beams?
                  There doesn't seem to be a problem finding halogen retrofits for the high beams, the best being the Cibie H1s, or the Hella H1s, which are readily available from Amazon for ~$50/headlight. The thing to watch out for is that they don't come with the best bulbs, so it might be best to buy them without and then find your own.

                  I don't live in an area where I can even use the high beams, which is why I was looking for the best low beams available that won't blind other drivers and looks stock.

                  This is the info I found on another thread recommending the Bi-Focus Hellas over the H4 versions available in the US.

                  This supposedly provides ~4x the light output on the low beam, and ~2x on the high beam. Cheap bulbs could end up being worse than the stock headlights, but top of the line bulbs should offer a solid improvement. The two brands are Hella or Cibie. I can’t speak as to which is better, if you think this is the route for you then I recommend researching the differences.

                  Hella H1 BiFocal (Bi-Focus) Low beam (outer): http://www.rallylights.com/hella-5-3...1-hl26700.html
                  Hella H1 High Beam (inner): http://www.rallylights.com/hl71157-h...-ece-each.html
                  In order for all four lights to stay on at the same time you would need to modify your relays, so that the low beam relay remains powered when the highs are on, and would need to remove the cross-over wire between the high beam circuit and low beam circuit. If you don't do this the low beams will go out when the high beams are enabled. Otherwise if you try to power all 4 lights off just the high beam circuit you will blow the high beam fuse.

                  Cibies: http://www.danielsternlighting.com/p.../products.html

                  There is also a mixed Low/High beam unit, just like the stock sealed beams work, though rallylights.com say it gives up some light over the BiFocal unit in order to accomplish its dual lighting nature.
                  Hella H4 Low/High beam (outer): http://www.rallylights.com/h5006-hel...dlamp-kit.html
                  However, this unit uses higher wattage low beam bulbs than the stock sealed beams, so you would need to investigate whether upgraded wiring is required for this, or if you can get away with just using a 10A fuse on the high beam circuit.

                  Pros:
                  Looks stock
                  Lighting expert Daniel Stern recommends the BiFocal as an excellent upgrade
                  BiFocal adds a low power city/driving light (requires wiring). This lets you be seen during the day without much extra strain on your battery/alternator and without wearing out your low beams.
                  No wiring changes required that I know of, though you may need to check how to ensure the BiFocal low beam stays on when the high beams are triggered, since it likely is a 2-prong connector instead of 3-prong like the stock sealed beam.
                  New Seat Shocks for Sale

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Stanley Rockafella View Post
                    What are you using for the high beams?
                    Cibie parabolic high beams.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Interested for sure.
                      _________________________
                      Outgunned, outnumbered
                      Though never outclassed

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I've been toying with this idea for years even bought a couple of sets of sealed beam buckets. Despite the superior light output the consensus seems to be with euro ellips (which I currently have) over the H4/H1 upgrade previously mentioned. I think it's for the style of the "smiley" setup over the function of the H4/H1's

                        If I were running sealed beams, I'd totally go for this upgrade.
                        If it's got tits or tires, it's gonna cost ya!

                        Comment


                          #13
                          This is awesome! I'd be interested at a low price point. Something like 40 or 50 per bulb.


                          it's a Kenny Powers quote on wheels

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by Stanley Rockafella View Post
                            I've been toying with this idea for years even bought a couple of sets of sealed beam buckets. Despite the superior light output the consensus seems to be with euro ellips (which I currently have) over the H4/H1 upgrade previously mentioned. I think it's for the style of the "smiley" setup over the function of the H4/H1's

                            If I were running sealed beams, I'd totally go for this upgrade.
                            Yes, these can't compete with the look of the smiley's, but for the people that don't care about that, or care about the cost and age of ellipses, the BiFocals have superior output to the H4 low beams that most people get, for the reasons described in the first post.
                            New Seat Shocks for Sale

                            Comment


                              #15
                              At $65 per side without any bulbs, I'm guessing this would be way cheaper than getting an HID retrofit kit for smileys? I have smileys on my car right now but the el cheapo eBay HID kit is not worth a shit. Looking at being able to see at night, very underrated.
                              '90 325is + S52

                              sigpic

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X