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Sorting out headlights for France

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Old Feb 19th, 2018, 17:17   #21
Semnoz
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Originally Posted by apersson850 View Post
Simply bring the whole headlamp with you inside the car. That's the whole point of the easy removal of the whole headlight.
In my experience, disconnecting the main electrical plug was much harder than getting the rear cover off the lamp assembly (you'd need more than nail clippers to survive that with no tools).

StuAgain - once you've pulled up the two metal 'strips' to bring the lamp assembly forward, they make a convenient tool to lever off the plastic rear cover.

Pushing the lamp assemblies back into place can be difficult. The trick is to look for the orange location sockets which the 'studs' sticking our of the lamp assembly push into. One of these sockets is near the front of the wing, the other to the side of the radiator. You need to get those lined up, and the lamp will pop in OK.

After a bit of practice, I recently did this while waiting for the ferry doors to open. Having the bonnet open did make other people think my nice D5 wasn't starting, which I didn't appreciate ! One another journey I just drove off the ferry with the lights in the 'wrong' position and waited for the first petrol station to do the switch-over.

On a slightly different topic, one thing I noticed on the ferry was how many cars didn't have lamp deflector stickers fitted, and I know for sure most of those cars wouldn't have had internal beam adjusters (most were 10/15 years old with halogen lamps) - but that's another story...
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Old Feb 20th, 2018, 14:13   #22
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Yes, the connector has a tendency to bind. A small amount of low temperature grease can help. But then you have to prepare before the trip, of course.

I have only had to use this feature once myself, since most countries nearby drive on the same side of the road, but when I did use it, I simply drove off the ferry and a few km to a petrol station in Dover. It was daylight, so the lights weren't very blinding during that short trip.
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Old Feb 20th, 2018, 15:31   #23
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Yes, the connector has a tendency to bind. A small amount of low temperature grease can help. But then you have to prepare before the trip, of course.

I have only had to use this feature once myself, since most countries nearby drive on the same side of the road, but when I did use it, I simply drove off the ferry and a few km to a petrol station in Dover. It was daylight, so the lights weren't very blinding during that short trip.
I hope you remembered to switch your lights over during Högertrafikomläggningen
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Old Feb 21st, 2018, 10:24   #24
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Considering the fact that I was six years old at that time, and that my bicycle didn't have assymetrical headlight, I got away with it pretty smoothly.

However, for some reason I remember that I joined my father to to the workshop, to get the Volvo PV 544 Special II he had shifted from left assymetric to right. It turned out that the PV 544, which was a 1959 year model (delivered late 1958) didn't have assymetric headlights at all. You could rotate a setup ring inside the headlight, to set if for left, right or neutral. It was set to neutral, but then got a shift to the right side.

That car also received an upgrade when external rear view mirrors were fitted to the front wings. The car had only an internal mirror to begin with, but some year external such mirrors become mandatory, and that applied to cars already in traffic as well.

At that time he (my father) also owned a Scania LS 76 S, which I presume got the same kind of modification to its lights. But I have no memory of that, so it was probably done when I wasn't present.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2018, 00:12   #25
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Considering the fact that I was six years old at that time, and that my bicycle didn't have assymetrical headlight, I got away with it pretty smoothly.

However, for some reason I remember that I joined my father to to the workshop, to get the Volvo PV 544 Special II he had shifted from left assymetric to right. It turned out that the PV 544, which was a 1959 year model (delivered late 1958) didn't have assymetric headlights at all. You could rotate a setup ring inside the headlight, to set if for left, right or neutral. It was set to neutral, but then got a shift to the right side.

That car also received an upgrade when external rear view mirrors were fitted to the front wings. The car had only an internal mirror to begin with, but some year external such mirrors become mandatory, and that applied to cars already in traffic as well.

At that time he (my father) also owned a Scania LS 76 S, which I presume got the same kind of modification to its lights. But I have no memory of that, so it was probably done when I wasn't present.
I was only joking, but glad I did now as that's an interesting story. Did some Swedish cars from the late 50's onwards start fitting 'adjustable' headlamps in anticipation for the drive side switch-over ?
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Old Feb 22nd, 2018, 09:09   #26
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I don't know how common that was. I just know that this Volvo had it. 1959 was the first model year for the Volvo PV 544. The PV 444 was made until 1958. If the older PV 444 also had this feature I don't know. My father bought the PV 544 before I was born.

So in a way the PV 544, from 1959, was just as featureful (in this particular case) as my XC70 from 2012. But adjusting the headlight on the old one took more advanced tools.

The more important point was that, for some reason, most vehicles in Sweden at that time already had the steering wheel on the left side. Perhaps because of all this talk about going to the right side (see below). The main exception were buses. Since they had the entry door on the left side, the driver was sitting on the right side, so he could sell the tickets. We had already simplified the staff to one driver/ticket sales person aboard. A lot of money was spent on rebuilding buses with a new door on the right side. It was usually mounted behind the driver, and the previous entry at the front left was closed and replaced with a double seat. I remember school buses from the early 1970's with this configuration.

Sweden switched over to the right side already 1718. But that didn't last long, as already 1734 we went back to the left side.
In 1927, a committe suggested investigating the cost for switching to the right side again. Proposals for this were brought up in the Swedish parliament 1934, 1939, 1941, 1943, 1945 and 1953. In 1954, a clear recommendation to go to the right side was issued. A public (advisory) poll in 1955 rejected the proposal with a majority of 83%.
Anyway, the government kept on pushing, and finally, May 10th 1963, the decision to switch to the right side on September 3rd, 1967, was taken.

Last edited by apersson850; Feb 22nd, 2018 at 09:22.
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