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Old 05-23-2008, 12:23 AM   #1
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LED Tail/Stop lights for 1978 AS...

I couldn't find any direct LED replacement units for the old Marathon units in our 78 Ambassador...so I started to nose around one of my local Trucker's supplier of Chrome and LED accessories.

I found that the LED units in the front fender type turn signals were real close in size. I was going to have the store owner order only the RED LED units, but had a pile of used/come backs that he let me rummage through to get four good RED LED units...all for $20...a real score!!!

I had to grind all four edges to make them 'square'...they had a slight curve. I also had to grind a 'notch' on the back so that they would recess into the AS's tail light casting where I removed the Marathon type lens and 'bucket' that held the old bulb.

I also had to slightly notch the mounting holes 'inward' toward the center, about 1/8 inch to match the screw holes...I used a small bit from my router to do the job neatly.

I can't believe how much BRIGHTER these LED units are compared to the old light bulbs! You couldn't see much light from the old units during the day...and now they stand out for all to see! At night they are 'blinding' and can't be missed...I hope!

Click on image for larger view:
Here's the entire rear view...there are two tail/stop LED units on each side; on both sides of the Back UP lens (unchanged). The side corner 'marker' type light have been upgraded to an LED unit also. Red/White reflective tape has been placed on the bumper. The three upper Marker lights are also being upgraded to LED units next week.

Here's a close up view of the LH assembly.

Here's the kind of Large Truck type forward/fender LED Turn signal units that I removed the RED LED units from:
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Old 05-23-2008, 05:31 AM   #2
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Very Nice!
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Old 05-23-2008, 06:31 AM   #3
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Were you still able to use the original gaskets or did you have to modify them too?
What were the specifications on the lights?

Looks very nice btw!!!
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Old 05-26-2008, 08:27 PM   #4
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the gaskets are in bad shape...I'm trying to find some replacements, or I'm going to have to cut some new ones myself...in all reality, if some rain gets into the tail light openings, I don't know how much actual damage it could cause...it would drip down the rear outside wall into the bumper area, and I don't think it would get near the floor.

I've thought about using some silicone sealer where the gaskets were placed, but it would be difficult to get the LED houshing out at a later date! Of course, one shouldn't have to remove them as they 'should' last for many years...

Don't know any 'specs' of the LED units...I just went to a trucker supply place and looked at the front type, double faced turn signal units that they had as show in my last picture. You could take one of your tail light lenses with you as a size sample...I don't know the MFG of these LED units I used, they are not marked, and I believe they are made in China...but there may be American types the same size...check the major truck light brands, Grote, Truck-lite, etc on the web.
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Old 10-31-2008, 03:17 PM   #5
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Why did you use double face units?

I like they way they look
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Old 11-01-2008, 01:04 AM   #6
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I only used the Red LED lens of the double face units.

It was the only size I could find that was close to the size of the 70's style AS tail/stop light lenses.

I was lucky to find some 'returned' double face units that had defects in the Amber LED's, so I could scrounge the Red LED's...on the cheap, otherwise I would have had to order just the replacement Red LED new units at a higher cost.

You have to find a shop that sells LED upgrade lighting to truckers to find this stuff.
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Old 11-02-2008, 08:35 PM   #7
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Ray can you explain what a Marathon unit is. Is that the style of the horizontally stacked group of lights? Or the manufacturer of the lenses? or manufacturer of the whole tail light assembly? Or just the manufacturer of the bulb holder & pigtails within the assembly etc.

Also do you know exactly which years had the style of tail lights that your trailer has?
thaks

dd
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Old 11-02-2008, 11:39 PM   #8
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I'm no expert on the years these tail/stop lights were used by AS...We just got our 78 AS this summer.

I believe AS had the alum casting made to their specs to fit the Marathon light assemblies, with includes the reflector/bulb socket and the tail/stop and back up lenses.
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Old 10-01-2009, 09:34 PM   #9
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great job

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexray View Post
I couldn't find any direct LED replacement units for the old Marathon units in our 78 Ambassador...so I started to nose around one of my local Trucker's supplier of Chrome and LED accessories.

I found that the LED units in the front fender type turn signals were real close in size.
That is a good looking job, and i don't think they were around when you fixed your but they now have pads you can glue to the back of the Lens.

Click here to see them

has anyone tried them? the video looks pretty good.

fixer
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Old 10-01-2009, 10:11 PM   #10
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OOD Mart

Quote:
Originally Posted by fixer58 View Post
That is a good looking job, and i don't think they were around when you fixed your but they now have pads you can glue to the back of the Lens.

Click here to see them

has anyone tried them? the video looks pretty good.

fixer
FYI ---

Fixer, I thought the look of the link you posted looked familiar so I checked it out. Those LED replacements are the same that are on Out of Doors Mart main website. Your avatar says Kernersville so at least you won't have to travel far to try them out.

TB
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Old 10-01-2009, 10:52 PM   #11
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Thanks Fixer....I might try those 'pads' for the backup lights...looks like a great solution...

If those 'pads' are bright enough, they might work in the bathroom lights, as I haven't converted them yet, waiting for some bright, warm white type LED's...

Thanks for the info..
Ray
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