How To Identify And Distinguish Authentic Classic Car Headlights From Reproductions

How To Identify And Distinguish Authentic Classic Car Headlights From Reproductions

10 November 2018
 Categories: , Blog

When you are looking for classic car restoration headlights for sale, do you know what to look for? Can you tell the real deal from working reproductions? As you begin your search to find just the right headlights for your classic/project car, here are a few things that will help you get the authentic lights instead of just the reproductions.

​Look for Shape, Size, and Depth

The reproductions of headlights for classic cars will be more "frame" than actual light. They will be slightly smaller and include clips to help hold the lights in place inside the larger headlight openings of the old car. The shapes of the lights will be slightly different too, with the reproductions being more rounded around corners and smoother on edges. The authentic and original headlights will be more square, with sharper edges and corners, deeper, and with larger, brighter lights. There are some special manufacturing marks you should be looking for on the lights too, depending on which make and model of car you are attempting to fully restore.

​Look at Light Bulb Type

Halogens and LED bulbs are modern technology. They signal that what you see in front of you for sale are reproductions. Much older light bulbs in headlights will be more light standard old light bulbs, and the headlights used chrome plating shields surrounding the bulbs to amplify the light of the bulbs as they projected outward into the darkness. Anything that sports modern lighting from the last twenty years or so is a reproduction. Anything that sports an older type of light bulb is the classic and authentic headlight you are looking for.

Check out Wiring

Modern headlights have computer-style clip plug-ins and/or wiring that connects into the car's front electrical systems. True classic car headlights were "pop-in, pop-out' designs that did not readily incorporate wiring. In fact, most classic cars did not have wiring in the actual headlights. They were able to light the bulbs by having the backs of the headlights make connections with special plates under the hood of the car. The plates were charged via electricity from wiring that wound around to the car's electrical system and car battery. If you see clips, plug-in chips, and lots of wires, there is a pretty good chance that these headlights are reproductions, and not originals. Keep looking for the authentic products you want by using all of the aforementioned tips to identify and distinguish authentic headlights from reproductions. 

Contact a company like Octane Lighting for more information.