Headlights for Diesels

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gmcmurry
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Joined: Sun May 08, 2022 9:46 pm

Headlights for Diesels

Post by gmcmurry »

I have been on a long journey building my pair of gas/electric FP45s. Now, almost finished, I see light at the end of the tunnel.

Actually, I have no light. I have been looking for a nice LED 1" diameter type light to use for my headlights. There should be two of them or sometimes even 4 in some cases.

No trouble finding a flashlight around my house, I have purchased several in hopes I can convert them to my own design for my Locomotive. So far, nothing I think will work.

I want something that is bright enough to do actual night runs.

Right now, I just have a blank nose. I haven't drilled any holes but I need to get this squared away before painting.

Does anyone have a suggestion for nice, practical and bright LED headlights or some other light that can be converted? I have no problem coming up with any voltage needed (I am an electronics guy). I just want a nice piece to start with.

Image

I would enjoy any input or ideas.

Greg
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makinsmoke
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Location: Texas Hill Country

Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by makinsmoke »

Hi Greg,
Nelson Reidel cut the business end off mag light flashlights and used them. Being a diesel you can use the plastic reflector with no danger of overheating like on a steam engine.

He turned down the outside of the bezel so it would fit inside a 2” piece of exhaust pipe for the loco headlight housing.

Mag lights come in several diameters and voltages. Might have to turn something to fit your body.

I have two panel type incandescent lamp lights that came out of a RR Supply diesel. I can find replacement bulbs no problem but have yet to find the exact panel mount housing itself. That would be ideal.
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Steggy
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by Steggy »

Some possible ideas here and here.  I opted to use incandescent flashlights, as LEDs’ color temperature is unnatural for all but the most recent generation of locomotives.
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NP317
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by NP317 »

Here are the screw-in base warm white LEDs I use in my locomotive headlights:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MR ... =UTF8&th=1

Available in multiple Voltages and colors, and comes with the matching E10 bases.
They give a very realistic incandescent light, and output is sufficient for night operations.
Pic attached showing the cab white LEDS (different bulbs) plus the warm white headlight forward illumination.
RussN

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makinsmoke
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by makinsmoke »

Not sure where you are headed, but unless that loco is on a barge you might be in trouble!

Lol
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NP317
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by NP317 »

makinsmoke wrote: Sun Jan 28, 2024 6:42 pm Not sure where you are headed, but unless that loco is on a barge you might be in trouble!

Lol
'Just trying to escape my garage (loco shed).
My steamboat is in there too...
RussN
gmcmurry
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by gmcmurry »

These are all great ideas, but the FP45 typically uses 2 smaller lights. I need something around 3/4" diameter or smaller. Also I want them bright enough to ride around in total darkness. I am going to take a look at the 2 X AAA Maglites. Maybe the led versions will be bright enough.
Ken Schroeder
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Re: Headlights for Diesels

Post by Ken Schroeder »

Roy at Ride Trains has or had some nice LED lights with reflector about 3/4" diameter. I have used many of them for headlights and ditch lights. I have used them with Precision Steel Cars headlight castings. Need to turn them down a bit but they were perfect. I think they were $5.00 each, 12V.
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