Instructables

DIY HID Flashlight for your car/truck

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Picture of DIY HID Flashlight for your car/truck
Once or twice a year, my family and I go camping with some friends. Usually we show up at night and have to set up camp in the dark. This can get pretty frustrating using just regular flashlights and using car headlights is difficult to move around. So I came up with a way to make a HID flashlight that has become very useful for not only camping but is a great tool to keep in the car in case of emergencies (flat tires, etc).
 
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Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
Materials:

- Big flashlight that uses a 6V H3 Bulb
- 25 ft extension cord
- Cigarette lighter plug (comes with flashlight)
- H3 HID bulb
- HID Ballast
- 1 Large Zip Tie
- 1 Small Zip Tie
- Soldering iron

The flashlight that I used has an adjustable stand and a swivel handle which makes it very useful.

Step 2: Removing the original bulb

Picture of Removing the original bulb
The first step is to open up the flash light, this is done by twisting off the black ring around the bulb/reflector. Once you have that open, you need to disconnect the current bulb by disconnecting one spade connector (White wire) and unscrewing the black wire.

You should wind up with this:

Step 3: Install the new bulb

Picture of Install the new bulb
Remove the bulb by popping out the wire holder. Then take you new HID bulb and put in place and replace the wire holder bending it around the new bulb.

Step 4: Remove the insides

Picture of Remove the insides
remove.jpg
The next step is to remove all the inside pieces from the flashlight.
Unscrew the switch, charging port, battery holder and remove all the pieces. Also remove the rubber cover for the charging power.

This step will leave you with some handy parts for other projects, namely the battery and charging port.

Step 5: Power switch

Picture of Power switch
Take the switch and cut one wire so you are left with this:

Step 6: Putting in the power cord

Picture of Putting in the power cord
Cut one end of the power cord and strip back a few inches. There should be three wires inside, you only need two, I used white and black. Run this through the hole where the charging port was.
asrcav8r1 year ago
I did the same thing with an old 6V rechargable spot light (HID balast in place of the battery) next is a LiFePo4 internal shoe-horned in to the unit.
Interesting idea. We'll have to test this one out...
-max-3 years ago
i hope you were VERY careful to not let that bulb touch your fingers or anything. some reason, this can shorten the bulbs life.
photemis (author)  -max-3 years ago
Yes, I did not touch the bulb. If you need to touch HID bulbs or accidentally touch them, its best to clean them off with a clean cloth afterwards, from what I understand, the oils from your finger can shorten the life of the bulbs causing them to fail early.
-max- photemis3 years ago
do you know why, my theory is that while the bulb is hot, and the dirt (oil, proteins, dead skin cells etc etc etc) will vaporize on the bulb and weaken the super fragile glass.
Preowner -max-3 years ago
Both HID and Halogen bulbs are not infact traditional glass (it can't handle the high temperatures). The bulb is actually quartz. The reason touching the bulb with your skin will cause them to fail is because the oils will cause the heat to build up and fisures will form in the quartz allowing the gas inside to seep out and air to seep in.

Sort of like the way oil from leftover food melts through a styrofoam container when in the microwave. if the oil was not there the container would be perfectly safe.
-max- Preowner3 years ago
I know the bulb is quartz. So that's why the bulb goes bad when touched...
-max- -max-3 years ago
where did you get the flashlight from? is it one of those "dollar store" type of 6V lantern? what about the battery?
Munchys3 years ago
Why use a h3 bulb?
photemis (author)  Munchys3 years ago
It was a 6V H3 bulb that was in the flashlight, making it an easy swap with no need to modify the bulb housing.
ReCreate5 years ago
yes I've seen hid light kits somewhere for like 20 bucks
photemis (author) 5 years ago
Thanks for the comment, I had thought of it and completely forgot when I made this one. Its a simple addition and I've added it to the steps.
babloon5 years ago
Great Instructables and easy to follow. I would suggest just one addition for security. It is best to use a 12v plug that have a fuse build inside, so if there is any shortcut for any reason, the fuse will blowup instead of making the wire to heat up and risk to get in fire depending of the value of the car fuse. And even if the car fuse blowup, it's often easier to change the fuse in the 12v plug than the one in the car, who often , are in a non comfortable place. The difference in the price worth it for the security and comfort it provide. P.S. Sorry for my limited English. I speak french.
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