F430 Engine bay light mod - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 25 Old 11-11-2011, 01:25 PM Thread Starter
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Engine bay light mod

While I was modifying the entire taillight wire harness, I integrated a wire extension for the...engine bay light. I will detail my modified tail lights later in a new thread but in a nutshell, the initial idea of Anders was to have all 4 tail lights on (position lights and brake lights all on). From this idea, I developed a modification using a Reed relay and an entire harness upgrade. But for now, back to the engine bay light

In following pictures, you can see how from the taillight wire harness I added a new connector (picture 1) on the LH side, then wired up to the front of the engine bay following the existing main LH side rear harness (wires are isolated in a thermal protected conduit).

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There, I added another connector which can be easily accessed :

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This connector makes the link with the SMD Led strip which is glued directly on the black part of the engine bay window.

When glued close to the edge on the black part, the LED strip can't be seen from outside and light is directed only on the engine. I used a SMD3528 LED strip, waterproof IP67 and heat resistance up to 85 degrees Celcius. Power consumption: 550mA. Size: 700mm (approx) x 10 mm x 2 mm

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For those who want to dim or switch off/on the engine bay light with a remote control, here's a 12V LED dimmer I installed (very cheap).

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The frequency of the remote control is 433Mhz which is perfect for a car but may disturb some radar detectors (for the US). Installation was very easy as I forcasted this already in my new rear wire harness. Works very well as the brightness can be remotly adjusted (useful when reversing for instance).

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Despite the engine bay heat, the LEDs are not heating at all and are holding up perfectly well after having installed this mod since now almost 1 year. Glued on the upper part of the engine bay window (on the black opaque part) is the best area as this area remains cool enough to not damage the LEDs.

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post #2 of 25 Old 11-11-2011, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Now the result pictures of this mod. It's very difficult to make a good balanced picture of LED lights at night but it gives I hope some good idea of the result. The main thing is that the light is totally directed on the red intake manifolds and the LED strip itself can't be seen from inside or outside.

I took also a picture from inside. Once again, it looks brighter than the reality. In fact, it does not blind the read window at all and no light goes into the passenger compartment.

The most interesting thing is that I found this light extremely useful when I need to work in the engine bay as the light is very white.

Enjoy
Stef

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Here you can see also my 4 LED tail lights switched on position light (sorry for the bad quality picture taken at night without a flash)

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From inside:
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neil dale likes this.
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post #3 of 25 Old 11-11-2011, 03:17 PM
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This looks Great!! Excellent work and idea. I assume there was no dash warning lights from tapping into the taillight line?? I know some cars test those lines for resistance to determine bulb-out indicators - but not sure if ours does.

After seeing this thread, I ordered similar products for the same purpose. I found a silicone encased IP68 SMD strip that I thought may further assist in heat resistance and low-profile aluminum housings for the strips. It's good to know yours have stood up to a year of use cuz my engine bay gets smokin' hot.

What glue did you use to fixate the strip?
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post #4 of 25 Old 11-11-2011, 03:33 PM
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Very nice. And neat work

Any light getting into the cabin when you drive at night??

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post #5 of 25 Old 11-11-2011, 04:09 PM
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God....that is just awesome Stef! Is that on full brightness or are you using a 12V dimmer? Reason I asked is because a mate of mine got his done up by a tech from an audio store and it turned out too bright! It was like staring into a 60inch LCD tv when driving behind him. Hideous is the only word to describe.

Yours seems alot softer. Which is tond nicer. Good job!
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post #6 of 25 Old 11-12-2011, 01:36 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys . No dashlight issues at all .

The F430 has the most simplest wiring system for all the lights (and that's why this car has SO many wires!). No current detection whatsoever. No Can bus driven lights neither. Just the simple +12V/Ground wires.

The only issue that can happen is when you change your tail stop bulbs with LED bulbs and only on the F1 cars. Anders discovered on his F430 F1 a random issue with the F1. After adding a resistor in addition to the LED stop lights, he didn't had any issues anymore. But for this mod, it's straight forward.


I positioned the lights on the black part of the engine bay window. It's the only position I found where there is no light coming in the passenger compartment and where the lights can not be seen from behind (I tried out many many different positions before taking the final decision).

I took the pictures with maximum intensity but as I wrote, itís always difficult to judge from pictures taken with a camera that will rebalance the light intensity. I found the dimmer quite important because some very dark nights, it can be a little too bright when driving on the motorway. Like you said, I donít want it to look like a big plasma screen that can be seen from 1/2 mile on the motorway


If you want to do this mod, just take your time to test out different positions before taking the final decision :

- integrate the engine bay heat factor
- integrate the glue resistance factor (or any other way of fixing the LEDs)
- integrate the light direction factor (how much light goes in the passenger compartment, can the LEDs be seen from outside, etc)


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post #7 of 25 Old 11-12-2011, 02:41 PM
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That is so shweeeeeeet!
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post #8 of 25 Old 11-15-2011, 12:33 PM
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That looks gorgeous Stef!

Did you say that they can be dimmed as well?
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post #9 of 25 Old 11-15-2011, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Peter & Harry

Yes, they can be dimmed and switched on/off with a small remote control. It's a simple 12V unit which can be found easily at 20-50$.
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post #10 of 25 Old 12-27-2011, 11:54 PM
 
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that looks awesome, cant imagine how this would look on a white / black out windows car
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post #11 of 25 Old 12-28-2011, 07:12 AM
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Looks like a jewelry case.

One thing about the 430 vs the 458 - the engine is less obstructed.

CF is the new chrome and the LED's are a great way to show off the best feature of the 430.

Well done!
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post #12 of 25 Old 12-28-2011, 09:26 AM
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please come to my house to do that for me.
thank u!

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post #13 of 25 Old 12-28-2011, 12:39 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by champagne612 View Post
Looks like a jewelry case.

One thing about the 430 vs the 458 - the engine is less obstructed.

CF is the new chrome and the LED's are a great way to show off the best feature of the 430.

Well done!
Thanks Doug and hotsauce (?) I fully agree with you Doug that the look of the engine on the 458 is somehow not shown in it's advantage which is a pity. The intake plenums of the 430 are such a masterpiece of design that they deserve a nice engine bay LED strip
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post #14 of 25 Old 12-28-2011, 12:55 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johns930 View Post
please come to my house to do that for me.
thank u!
Thanks But if I start I will stay at your home for some time because you'll be tempted also by the front Hyperflux DLR headlights, the fade in/out interior footwell and doom lights when doors are opened or closed, as well as the 4 tail lights all working together when braking or in Position light

Dimmed new doom light
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Dimmer driver and passenger footwell lights
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Hyperflux + current driver operated headlights
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post #15 of 25 Old 12-28-2011, 04:37 PM
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Stef-
You are seriously a GENIUS!



Rodney
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post #16 of 25 Old 12-29-2011, 08:11 PM
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wow!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by StefVan View Post
Thanks But if I start I will stay at your home for some time because you'll be tempted also by the front Hyperflux DLR headlights, the fade in/out interior footwell and doom lights when doors are opened or closed, as well as the 4 tail lights all working together when braking or in Position light
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post #17 of 25 Old 12-30-2011, 04:03 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Rodney and Johns

Stay tuned here on FerrariLife, there's a lot more stuff to come
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post #18 of 25 Old 10-26-2012, 07:12 AM
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Stef:

Love the LED lights. Thinking about doing the same for my 360.

Please explain how you got the wires from the engine bay compartment to the engine deck lid?

I cannot figure out a way to get the wires on the lid without leaving them exposed.

Can you give us an update on how the lights are working?

Any problems with the heat melting the 3m tape that holds them to the deck?
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post #19 of 25 Old 10-26-2012, 07:20 AM
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Wouldn't adding light in the engine bay cause more reflection on the glass behind the seats? The problem of "seeing things" during lane change is bad enough as it is.
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post #20 of 25 Old 10-26-2012, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Rob,

I connected the engine bay light from the parking light + wire. As I changed entirely the tail light wire harness, it was not difficult to make an additional output which powers the remote controlled dimmer and then from the dimmer to the engine bay light. I did the wiring behind the engine bay panels and they never suffered from the engine bay heat. I taped them with a specific tissue based tape that has a good level of heat resistance. If you donít want to bother taping the wires, you can also use split convoluted tubing but check the product datasheet to know the melting and flash temperatures.

The wires on the lid are protected with a heat shrink tubing up to the LED strip. I believe I made this installation since at least 1.5 year ago and everything is still 100% intact, including the tape holding the LED strip. I must say that I bought a ďseriousĒ LED strip, not those cheap strips easily found on Ebay. As we have to drive here with the lights always on, the LED strip is also all the time on (I donít ever bother myself to switch it off with the remote ). The LED strip has been flawless. In the way I positioned the LED strip, it does not blind at all the engine bay and rear window. It doesnít neither blind the people who are driving behind me. I did this test while driving behind my 430 to make sure the engine bay light would not create any security issues especially in the dark.

The only improvement I made since was adding 2 way super seal connectors on the dimmer unit. Here's a picture where the improvement is being made:
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This installation is really easy but youíll have to tap into the parking light wire to power the LED strip.

Let us know how it goes I'd like to see your pictures
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