Originally Posted by Jonnyfilmboy
I just did this retrofit today. Instructions would have helped..
Warning to everyone else out there, the low and high beam reflector are one single piece of plastic which is very fragile. Once you adjust the two aiming screws to their limits, you are placing a twisting pressure on that reflector. I managed to crack both left and right reflectors along the dividing line between low and high beams even when I was being extremely careful. They went back together just fine and I don't think it will cause any issues, but just go very slowly during this step. And once the reflector craxks, it leaves a white powder on the inside of the headlight that you might have a hard time cleaning out. I used canned air.
Also, this was mentioned in the mazda instructions but it bears repeating. Use a sharpie or other felt tip marker to mark the location of the reflector housing before you start to turn those adjustment screws. Reaiming the left/right aim is a royal pain in the ass once the headlights are reinstalled. So if you mark them, you can return them to stock once the new projectors are installed and just have to adjust the up and down which is easy.
If you find that you DO have to adjust the left right aiming, the method I used was to put an 8mm socket on the adjusting bolt and I used a pair of pliers to rotate the socket. Worked fine but it wasn't super fun.
This install was very difficult for me...until I figured out that I had to disassemble the old and new projectors. Once I figured that out, the install went a lot more smoothly.
I REALLY wish that I had posted up my post-install notes and impressions to help you avoid this issue. I, too, had the problem with cracking the inner housing when removing the adjusters. I had to make a tool to help unscrew the center pivot bolt (which TRS mistakenly thought had a philips head when they talk about drilling a small hole in the back of the housing).
I managed to only crack 1 of the housings, but the real problem is that following the directions as they are stated on HID planet gives you a pretty good chance of cracking the housing. Also, they really should remove the part of their how-to that references drilling the hole to remove the center mounting point onthe inner housing. I followed their directions (both on the internet and when I called for technical support) and there is NO benefit (or reason) to drill the hole in the back- it leads to the back of a ball and socket swivel joint.
I found that when the whole assembly is hot and you remove the cover, you can get a really thin wrench between the inner and outer housings and pop the center pivot out of the cup that it sits in. You have to slowly work the adjusters loose, working side to side. When it gets tight enough to start to feel resistance, use the wrench to pop out the center point, then continue loosening the adjusters.
When reassembling, tighten the adjusters until the ball comes in contact with the socket, then gently tighten it a turn or so at a time untill you can press the ball back in. It really takes as much finesse as it does actual skill.
I plan to contact TRS for the rights to their pictures to do a better (more accurate) writeup, but they are not going to like my general feedback on the setup. For what I paid, the cost/benefit was not that great, and I had to do some significant work on the bracket that they sent.
For example, they file off a corner of their standard bracket to make it fit in the OEM location, but they did not file off enough on one of the ones that I received. Also, the projectors had metal shavings all over them, and in places that were difficult/impossible to access.
Your compressed air idea was a good one, which leads me to the idea that TRS should really have a better "what you need before you get started" tools & materials list.
They neglected to mention extra alcohol wipes (2 for the whole setup? Really? It took 2 just to clean up the metal shavings!), a quality cleaning solution for the cover and chrome parts of the housing, a very, VERY narrow/thin 8mm box end wrench, and a dremel or file (in the event that they under-filed the bracket, like they did on mine).
If you only own 1 car and you have it taken apart, it is not exactly easy to run to the store to buy the things that they neglected to mention.
To be clear, they seemed like great guys, and overall, the product is a good one...but I'd like to see better and more accurate technical support. It isn't that they were not willing to help, but the help was too little and too late.
Here are some random pictures of my install issues:
Here is the crack that results from following their directions, as written. When you undo the 2 adjustors without popping or loosening the center point, you get a crack like this:
Here is the back of that center attachment point. TRS said to drill right behind it (from the back) and insert a #2 philips screw driver to remove the "screw" (their word) from the front part of the inner housing.
Here is the wrench that I made using a smallpiece of aluminum flat stock, a hacksaw, and a file. I used it to loosen the threaded part on the first one that I did, then onece the gap opened up a little, I was able to use a regular 8mm wrench. On the second one, I found it easier to use the wrench to pry the ball out of the socket (as described above).