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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I have always wondered how people manage to get their headlights to reflect the rainbow as shown in this image:

259833


Does anyone know how to replicate this effect? Is it a specific product? Is it a tint that is put ontop of the lights?
Surely it isn't just a cut and polish... Perhaps a certain extra item or step?
 

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Usually happens when they've been waxed a few times.
I've had it on other cars too.
 

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Here's a set I refurbished time ago, you can see in the central area the rainbow coming to life. It happens only in natural light and the conditions have to just be perfect, angle etc.

259840
 

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Here's a set I refurbished time ago, you can see in the central area the rainbow coming to life. It happens only in natural light and the conditions have to just be perfect, angle etc.

View attachment 259840
Just curious. Did you refurb glass headlights? These look super good and when I pulled my platic covers off and tried to refurb them it turned out super shitty. Just wound up buying the glass ones anyway, just curious. If so I'd probably take another whack at it.
 

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When you say glass, do you mean the euro spec type glass?
I've seen some glass lens replacements that are actually a form of plastic.

Headlights in this photo was 25 year old, dog rough. I promise you its only the top layer.

Use a cutting compound, then a cutting polish, then some glaze polish and a wax. A cheap drill attachment and sometimes (not as much as you'd think) made these looks brand new.

I always found it was just using the right products that was the magic to getting lenses looking great.

But yes. Refurbed lots of actual glass spec headlights (defined as the ones with electronic height adjustment in), got a set here just about to start doing!
 

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When you say glass, do you mean the euro spec type glass?
I've seen some glass lens replacements that are actually a form of plastic.

Headlights in this photo was 25 year old, dog rough. I promise you its only the top layer.

Use a cutting compound, then a cutting polish, then some glaze polish and a wax. A cheap drill attachment and sometimes (not as much as you'd think) made these looks brand new.

I always found it was just using the right products that was the magic to getting lenses looking great.

But yes. Refurbed lots of actual glass spec headlights (defined as the ones with electronic height adjustment in), got a set here just about to start doing!
Yeah, I was referring to euro. Should have been more clear haha. If they just sold glass covers that could be put on the stock ones instead of the plastic that would be sweet. Then I'd just bake them back on with new rubber seal and call it a day since I painted the stock chrome black. Looks way better, but the lenses when I used the kit to refurbish them didn't come out too great. Then again it was my first time ever trying to restore headlights so meh 🙃
 

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Definitely have another go.
Yeah I've a euro set here taking apart for black inserts and steel rings. The facelift style looks so much nicer.
But I don't like facelift inserts. The sharp edges just look a bit crap.
 

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jNoz - Did you use the a facelift (97-98) lens on a S1 headlight there? It looks like there are fewer reflector lines on the lens vs a standard s1 lens, but its definitely an S1 insert with the parking light/turn signal hump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Usually happens when they've been waxed a few times.
I've had it on other cars too.
Hmmm, do you mean something like waxing multiple layers onto it?
 

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Hmmm, do you mean something like waxing multiple layers onto it?
Yes mate. Exactly that.

I feel like that's what gives it the colour. I used Dodo but I'm sure others provide the same finish.

Has to be that side angle of course.
 

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That rainbow effect you see is from the UV coating applied by the manufacturer. As time goes on and it fades the rainbow effect also disappears. 3m makes headlight clear coat UV wipe kits. This will allow you to continue to protect your headlights as the coating fades. It will also give you the rainbow effect again when you apply it. Have done it on several of my cars and this coating works very well. But these over the counter uv coatings don’t last as long as the manufacture coating so you’ll want to reapply yearly. https://www.3m.com/3M/en_US/company...Clear-Coat-Wipes/?N=5002385+3290574556&rt=rud
 

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Interesting. I've never used any UV coatings and wondered if it would help.

Yearly isn't too bad. I usually sand back the lens taking material off and just wax it. Polishing does kinda suck all the time.
 

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^^^What he said. Nothing done to get this effect.


Ken.
 
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As Mark and Ken just said, My BNIB headlights sitting in my wardrobe already have this effect, and they have never seen any product to achieve it.
 
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