Infiniti FX Forum banner

1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I was originally going to copy FoxHawk's ambient lighting mod by drilling 2 small holes into the overhead sunglass holder piece (Really slick!) but I trashed that idea for now - It seems that the entire sunglass holder unit minus the map light assembly is integrated into the headliner (STOOOPID DESIGN!). So to do what he did, I could: 1) Cut the plastic posts holding it to the headliner and regluing it back (like Fox) or 2) Remove the entire headliner.... Nah, I dont think so. I'll attempt my own idea 1st.

By the way, special thanks to Foxhawk for the inspiration and detailed help on getting me motivated and started. :wink:

After examining the Map light assembly, there are places behind the map light lenses I could install the LEDs. I have ordered some Orange LEDs and are enroute but for now I have a buttload of blue high intensity leds laying around. So I took out the map light assembly and played around to see what it would look like.

Here's how it looks with a 5mm led in the vent hole inside the light assembly:
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
I'm gonna keep playing around with the placement of these and then once I finalize that, I'm gonna go see how it'll look in the car. I may have some RED LEDs laying around somewhere. I'll try those instead later as these blue LEDs are seriously intense. If the map light glows too intensely, I'll have to drill a hole into these map light covers and stick a clear LED mount onto them.

Some more pics for now:
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Ok some in the dark, same placement as before. I still need to work out the placement of the LEDs to have more of a diffused, less intense light:
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
286 Posts
please clarify the foll.
are you intending on replacing the map light or
would this be in addition to the map light with some localized switch.
or
would you wire it to the car's dash board dimming system .
do you plan to address the footwell areas as well
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
FXer: This is in addition to the map lights; It's intention is to create ambient lighting to give the cabin a nice warm 'glow' a la BMW, Audi, VW, etc... I was just testing with the Blue LEDs that I had laying around just to see how it looks. If all goes well with the current placement options - there are a few, it'll be a simple job anyone can do. I just took pics of the easiest mount option so far. To have it switched, I need to tuck the wires along the headliner, down the pillar and tap into a switched power source. It's too cold to mess around with taking apart trim and running lines. So for now, my plan is to just tap into a hot 12v line, so it will be on as long as the car is on and for 5 mins even after shutoff (battery will prevent drain by shutting these off - I think). Once it's warmer, I will try to run the lines to a switched source.

I am thinking of doing the footwells and the rear as well. It is certainly easier to work with since I have easy access to switched power sources and less mounting issues due to the fact that they can be hidden. Again, this will have to wait till it warms up here in NY.

Particle: Thnx :) I'll report back once I install the reds (if I can find where I left them!) for now. Cant wait to get my orange and amber leds... the color match will be difficult.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
I was originally going to copy FoxHawk's ambient lighting mod by drilling 2 small holes into the overhead sunglass holder piece (Really slick!) but I trashed that idea for now - It seems that the entire sunglass holder unit minus the map light assembly is integrated into the headliner
Looking at the Service Manual, I was wondering, if we could remove the sun-visor bracket and clip, then be able to pull down the driver side / middle headline just enough to insert on or more LED’s in the front part of the upper plastic frame around the sunglass holder. I think that if we could pull that down about 2 inches we could insert the led and then run the wires back and down the doorframe then under the dash to maybe the clock light circuit. I have several LED’s that I got from DAV-Electronics that you could drill a ¼ in hole from the front, push in the LED holder from the front and then snap in the LED from the back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
WeGaFX - I was wondering the same thing. It was actually my 1st idea after seeing FoxHawk's Mod. When I pm'ed him and asked why he had to cut the plastic posts on the piece, he mentioned to me the entire headliner needs to be removed from back to front? I am not sure if this is entirely true or not, but even having to pull down the front a tiny bit involves a lot of work & patience. If it's possible, I'd love to do that instead of having to use the map lights. It's still too cold out for me to sit out in the car to pull trim and play around inside the car. :(

BTW, are you talking about the black nylon LED clip holders or the clear, round diffuser LED holders from DAV? I've ordered a few of those clear ones. I think they'll be great for diffusing narrow angle (15 degrees) high intensity LEDs I've ordered.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
ujmont, I got both and the clear defusers seem to work very well. I ordered 2 of the orange, 2 of the red-orange and 1 just red. The other night I hooked up all three colors and found that the orange or the red-orange was the best for my "Bricky" interior. I like the idea of FoxHawk's first location but I did not want to tear out everything. One other thought might be to cut a small access hole inside of the sunglass area just big enough to install the LED. Some time over the next few weeks I might try just to remove the sunvisor and clips and see if there is enough give to slip in the LED. Also I want to find the proper connection point and make sure that the LED will work correctly (before I cut or drill anything) when the dash lights are on and what happends when they are dimmed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Keep us posted on your progress! I've decided to put this off until it gets a bit warmer here in NY (we got ~5" of snow yesterday :( ). I'm still waiting for my amber and orange leds to come in and in a little over a week, I'm off to Asia for 2 wks of vaca.... So many things to do, so little time - you know how it goes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
After I polished the end of the LED that I ground off, I compared the light pattern to one that was not ground and polished with and without the defuser.

For me the one that was ground off and polished using the standard black mounting collar works the best, even better that also using the defuser. It seems to give me a softer more even light pattern.

However, I'm not ready to drill the holes and finish the install. I will be taking my FX in for the 7500 mile service within the next 2 weeks and will find out then how to remove the sunvisor and clip and also how the 2 front clips work on the headliner.

Later......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Ok, finally DONE!! :D I know, worthless without pics... I couldn’t take pics during the install because I was having issues w/ my digicam (Li batteries wont hold charges), sorry. I’ll try to post some pics tonight to give you a better idea on what I did. Hopefully the cam can pic up such low light...

After playing around with placement options, I’ve decided not to drill holes into the sunglass holder trim or the mirror (chickened out, couldn’t get myself to do it). Instead, I decided to mount a LED on the wire finisher that is between the mirror mount & the headliner. I tucked the wires into the headliner, down the driver's side a-pillar & wired it to the Snow Mode(AWD) button's red-blue wire, which is the switched power - it only goes on when the lights are on. I then grounded it on a bolt on the A pillar. I am very happy with the results as its stealthy and very clean - not really visible from the driver or passenger seat (or outside) unless you duck under to look up for it. It gives a VERY subtle, warm amber glow to the center console in the dark, which is exactly what I was going for. It’s just as subtle as the glow from the door handles lights.

I also did the front two footwells and I think it also came out very well... a very subtle warm glow. I tapped into the clock light for these (same red-blue wire).

I'm still trying to figure out where to place them for the rears...

I'll do a full write up when I get a chance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
My cameras absolutely sucks in low light... even with max exposure, it couldn't pic up jack...

I guess these will have to do until I can borrow a good low light camera. Only pics of the overhead one for now.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
75 Posts
Does your LED help you see the HomeLink buttons on your mirror? This is why I wanted to add ambient lighting.

Bill...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Good question... I didnt really look for it, I dont use the homelink buttons. Not sure but I'd say no. I always use the auto mirror function and the LED in the mirror as a point of reference of where the buttons are.

The way the light shines down, it casts a glow on the very top plastic border of the mirror, but since the mirror itself is recessed, it has zero glare on the glass. It doesnt effect the auto mirror either. The way the buttons are recessed, unless it was directly aimed towards those buttons, it would have to be a very bright light to cast enough light to see those buttons - either way, it would be too distracting IMO.

Maybe using a UV LED would make the button diagrams 'Glow', if those buttons are the only things you're concerned with.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,609 Posts
Nice mod ujmot! I think you should take it all apart and do the install again... with pictures! :evil: :D Seriously though, a parts list and few more details would be great if it's not too much trouble.

Maybe using a UV LED would make the button diagrams 'Glow', if those buttons are the only things you're concerned with.
So do you think the UV light would excite the paint somehow? I too would like to see those buttons illuminated. Oh, and how much of your interior is illuminated: just the nav area or all the way down to the cup holder?

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Thanks. :) I plan on doing a full write up sometime this week/weekend so anyone interested in doing this can use it sort of as a guide. It's incredibly easy to do IMO. I think the hardest part was thinking up placement and working up the courage to drill holes into trim :shock: I'll try to take some pics too. It's not hard to take the trim pieces off for this install.

Oh and the UV LED is basically like a black light. Anything white (like the diagrams on the homelink buttons) it lays light on should 'glow' purple in the dark - in theory... not 100% it would.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
particlefx said:
Oh, and how much of your interior is illuminated: just the nav area or all the way down to the cup holder?
It illuminates the cup holder area, armrest and the aluminum console mostly. It doesnt cast light on the nav/hvac area much at all. The mirror sorts of blocks that area and the light from the nav screen combined with the lit up buttons create enough light for that area as is.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,122 Posts
Looks great.

I miss that feature, had it on my e39 bmw before I sold it and got the FX.

Jim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Ok to anyone interested....

Half way done w/ doing the write up (it's taking much, much longer than actually doing the mod)... I still need to take pics to put it all together, should be done by the weekend.

**I have a BUNCH of left over LEDs w/ resistors in Amber, Red, Orange, White & Blue. If you’d like a few, just pm me (I’m not looking to sell them, just here to help!).**

For now here's a quick list of supplies/tools needed:

- 5mm (T1) LEDs, color of your choice. I used amber to match the interior lights.
- Resistors (~470ohm, ¼ watt)
- DC Power Supply (Optional - to test LEDs w/ resistors before install)
- LED Mounting clips - I used the clear diffused type: http://dav-electronics.com/led-001-c.htm
You can choose to use the black flush mount also – If you’re looking for a brighter ambient light, then this would be a better choice. Just be sure to use a dremel sander to sand the tip of the LED slightly to diffuse the light beam. One thing to keep in mind is that the rear view mirror wire finisher is not very deep. So whichever mount you choose to use, you'd need to use some sort of spacer in between the exterior surface of the finisher and the mount to allow enough room to route both the existing wire and the wire from the LEDs under that trim piece.
- Assorted rubber grommets (optional - to act as spacer)
- Body trim tool (optional – I used my hands)
- 20-24 gauge wire - Red
- 20-24 gauge wire - Black
- Wire cutter/Crimp tool
- Electrical tape
- Heat shrink tubes (Assorted)
- Soldering Gun / Solder kit – A starter kit http://www.radioshack.com/product.asp?c ... =64%2D2803
- Drill with ¼” Drill bit
- Wire tap splice
- Wire zip ties
- A lot of patience


All this stuff can be bought at your local Radio Shack. The mounts and LEDs can be found on various online retailers.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top