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Re: Brighter headlamps

Subject: Re: Brighter headlamps
From: (Denise Thorpe)
Date: Tue, 28 Nov 95 14:58:33 PST
Russ Wilson asked curiously:

> In response to Ira's question on brighter headlights, Shel wrote:
> >Cibie, Hella, and others have 7" round headlights available which would
> >fit the B. Unfortunately, most of those are illegal in California
> >(because they have a roughly 3/4 circle beam pattern).
> For decades I have noted the caveat, "illegal for street use in California"
> in descriptions of accessory auto lights.  I understand why California
> might want stricter emission regulations but, headlights??  Does anyone
> know why this is?  Does it have any significance in any other states (like
> food products that meet Pennsylvania Dept of Agriculture regulations are
> deemed to satisfy all other states' codes)?

Sometime in the early '80's, an authorized Hella and Cibie vendor and 
installer (Pat, late of Octagon) told me that the reason given for not 
allowing halogen lights in California is that the reflectors have a tendency 
to corrode because the bulbs are replaceable and therefore the headlights 
aren't "sealed" beam.  He said the _real_ reason is that the parts companies 
that manufacture sealed beam headlights had a powerful lobby.  It's 
interesting that certain halogen headlights with replaceable bulbs are now 
legal in California.  Most obvious are the original headlights that come with 
new cars.  Maybe new car companies have a more powerful lobby than 
replacement part manufacturers.

Interestingly enough, I've actually seen lots of working halogen headlights
that produce very little light because the reflectors are corroded.  They've 
been mostly on Volvos, but in '84 I saw an Audi with a corroded high beam 
being delivered new to a dealership.

Remember, never touch a halogen bulb with skin (or set your battery on
concrete (or sit on concrete)).

And here we are again, Russ, having a conversation in front of the world 
when we live in the same town.

Denise Thorpe

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