3rd Brake Light

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3rd Brake Light

Postby 1972nail » Wed Jan 24, 2018 4:39 pm

After following a few HC's last year on the various show runs I decided that the brake light design is rather 'dated' in that they are not as noticeable as brake lights on a modern car. They are supposed to be warning lights and in my opinion the standard ones are a bit lacking in that department now a days.

First of all they are relatively small by modern standards and secondly they are quite low down compared with the higher seating position in modern cars.

I had thought of upgrading them to modern LED's but I'm not a fan of that idea on looks alone. So I decided to fit a 3rd brake light, just like modern cars.

After a bit of research and consideration on mounting, looks etc. I bought a cheap LED lamp bar from eBay for £3 including postage to mount on the rear parcel shelf. The one I chose was about 200 mm long.



I removed the white writing using nail polish remover and covered the wires with black shrink wrap.

If you look inside the boot at the underside of the parcel shelf you will see a conveniently placed hole through which to fish the wires. Then up through the existing ventilation holes in the parcel shelf.



The wiring is simple, the red live wire goes to the brake light circuit, which is easily accessed at the brake light in the boot and the black wire is connected to the bodywork at any convenient place. I placed mine on the additional earthing terminal I have made at the tail lights to remedy persistent earthing problems with the lights.

All that remained was to give them a test.



When not lit the addition is not too noticeable.





All in all i think it is a worthwhile safety modification which cost the grand total of £3 plus about 20 minutes of my time.
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby rizzo » Wed Jan 24, 2018 6:53 pm

Very neat job which reminds me to add it to my to do list of jobs, this is something that is quite often overlooked but a great idea.
You used to be able to buy standard bulbs that were brighter than the original which brightens up old lamps, but i like the idea of a third light. :goodideasign:
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby droopsnoot » Wed Jan 24, 2018 7:41 pm

Yes, that does look nice, I have been considering something similar for the hatch. My initial thought was to try to mould something into the rear spoiler, but that sounds like too much of a job for now at least.
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby 1972nail » Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:09 pm

I considered sticking it on to the glass at the top of the screen and tucking the wires into the screen rubber, but it reduced the headroom too much on a Firenza. Having said that, it should be OK on the Hatch.
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby droopsnoot » Thu Jan 25, 2018 11:33 am

Yes, maybe even mount it on the hinge cover moulding rather than on the tailgate itself. Not sure off the top of my head whether that would be low enough.
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby 1972nail » Thu Jan 25, 2018 4:03 pm

OOPS! I made a mistake on the price .... They are only £2.00 inc postage - so you really can afford to experiment. :lol:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Red-24-LED-C ... 0281.m3567

The double sided tape supplied isn't very sticky so if mounting on the plastic hinge cover you might want to hold it on with a couple of self tappers through the mounting feet, there is enough room on the one I bought for that. Also the lamp bar swivels on the supports so you can adjust the angle to suit.
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Re: 3rd Brake Light

Postby droopsnoot » Thu Jan 25, 2018 7:49 pm

Having looked at it, I'm not sure it would be low enough without hanging the LED lamp below it, which I think would impinge on the load height too much. Not that I'm intending to use it as a load-carrier, but it just makes it easy to catch, and of course if I do that, it won't be the £2 LED brake light that breaks, it'll be the hard-to-replace hinge trim. Cheers for the link though, I'll have a look at that for the price.
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