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Old 01-22-2009, 01:50 PM   #1
emsmap
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Default How to get haziness away?

Alrite here is my problem. I cut/dremeled my stock headlight lense off the housing because I am doing a homemaid retrofit project. Well I applied some Meguires Plastic Scratch and that made a horrible haze over the lense and I cant get that haziness gone to save my life I have tried different waxes and of course tried to sand it off but nothing works. Any suggestions?
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:02 PM   #2
98imprezaWagon
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i use perfect-it 3000 (rubbing compound) and buff it...comes out like new...hope this helps..i have also tried sanding kits, they made it horrible...this worked for me.
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:07 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emsmap View Post
have tried different waxes and of course tried to sand it off but nothing works.
How fine was the sandpaper that you used? Usually wetsanding a headlight will remove any haziness.
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:18 PM   #4
emsmap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by derekman View Post
How fine was the sandpaper that you used? Usually wetsanding a headlight will remove any haziness.
I wet sanded it with 800 grit sandpaper and then completed another sanding with 1000 grit sandpaper and still really hazy
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:19 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 98imprezaWagon View Post
i use perfect-it 3000 (rubbing compound) and buff it...comes out like new...hope this helps..i have also tried sanding kits, they made it horrible...this worked for me.
hmmmm I might have to look into that. Thank You
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Old 01-22-2009, 02:52 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emsmap View Post
I wet sanded it with 800 grit sandpaper and then completed another sanding with 1000 grit sandpaper and still really hazy
you'll need to go with a higher grit, get up to like 2000, then go at it with a rubbing compound or a heavy polish.
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:06 PM   #7
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Yeah 1000 isnt high enough. The kits you can buy at auto parts stores come with paper up to 3k i think. I used some scratch X after the wet sanding kit and it turned out pretty decent.

Mike
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:09 PM   #8
emsmap
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wow 3000 grit is like a peice of notebook paper lol
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emsmap View Post
Alrite here is my problem. I cut/dremeled my stock headlight lense off the housing because I am doing a homemaid retrofit project. Well I applied some Meguires Plastic Scratch and that made a horrible haze over the lense and I cant get that haziness gone to save my life I have tried different waxes and of course tried to sand it off but nothing works. Any suggestions?
I'm curious as to how the Meguiars plastic polish (assuming you used something like Plast-X) caused the lens to become hazy. You are talking about the plastic, clear lens and not the silver reflector, right? With the lens, you will need to work up to 2000 grit like Kev mentioned. The lens will still be hazy (wetsanding does not remove haze) so you will need to follow up with the compound (as mentioned) and a polish. The goal with each step is to remove the marks left by the former so you can move on. At the end, a plastic/finer polish can be used to further enhance the clarity. ......800 grit is really aggressive and should only be used in the worst cases IMO (if at all).
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:27 PM   #10
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^ Thank you for your input! Anyway yes the reason I used 800 is because there were some scratches on the inside of the lense so that took them right off. I will invest in some compound and polish this evening to see if that helps with some 2000 grit
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:29 PM   #11
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you'll need to go with a higher grit, get up to like 2000, then go at it with a rubbing compound or a heavy polish.
Exactly. Then top it off with a layer of clearcloat.
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:31 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emsmap View Post
^ Thank you for your input! Anyway yes the reason I used 800 is because there were some scratches on the inside of the lense so that took them right off. I will invest in some compound and polish this evening to see if that helps with some 2000 grit
you should post some before/after pics. That kinda stuff gets me through the work day.
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:44 PM   #13
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cool man I actually have taken quite a bit of project pictures from this. I am using the ebay projector headlights housing and have completly stripped them down and made quality projector headlights with a lense going over them. They pretty much look like the WRC headlights now. I will post pictures when finished
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Old 01-22-2009, 03:46 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emsmap View Post
^ Thank you for your input! Anyway yes the reason I used 800 is because there were some scratches on the inside of the lense so that took them right off. I will invest in some compound and polish this evening to see if that helps with some 2000 grit
....if you have a drill and can get your hands on a polishing pad/ball that can be mounted to it, it will really help cut the time required with the compound and polish(es) you use. There are even kits on the market that include the items needed. Even something like the Powerball by Mothers (readily available in the retail market and mounts to any standard drill) may do the trick.
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Old 01-22-2009, 08:58 PM   #15
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Wetsanding headlights puts in very fine, very uniform, very densely spaced fine scratches, of course it will look hazy. Its meant to put in uniform "damage" to eliminate non uniform damage to allow a surface to be polished out more easily than a non uniform surface(read scratch of varying depth and dimension)

Keep in mind that the newer factory headlights come with a UV protection on it.

What you will need to do since you already have worked with 800 and 1k grit, you should start to work down in finer and finer grits(maybe something like 1500 -2000-3000) then maybe you can get to a point where you can hand polish or machine polish the now fine marks out.

If youre planning on attacking this further, I would suggest reading up on products effective by hand that are easily available to you.

If you end up ordering I would say look into meguiars m105, then IP from menzerna and you can follow those with your PlastX that you have. And these if done by hand or machine may require multiple applications, moreso by hand.

Make sure you coat the headlights after with a sealant or wax of some sort as the UV protection in them may now be compromised.
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Old 01-23-2009, 02:53 PM   #16
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What type of applicator did you use with the PlastX? I find starting with a foam pad works best with PlastX as a lot of times a Microfiber or Cloth applicator is too aggressive. Also, this is why you should ALWAYS do a test spot whether it be on paint or plastic to make sure you don't run into this problem, but I'm sure you've figured that out by now.

Once you get all those scratches out, I find that the Meguiar's Plastic Cleaner and Plastic Polish are a great one-two combo for filling and reducing scratches in plastic. They contain no abrasives so it comes out pretty nice with some work.
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Old 01-23-2009, 09:40 PM   #17
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Thank you for all your suggestions! So basically I should sand more and more with finer papers then use a rubbing compound and then a rubbing polish?
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Old 01-23-2009, 10:32 PM   #18
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....simply put, yes. However, just keep in mind that the purpose of each step is to correct the abrasions left by the previous one until you are left with a nice clear lens.
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Old 01-28-2009, 02:30 AM   #19
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I used a product called Crystal View. A lot of people recommended it so I went ahead and tried it. Im happy with it.


Heres it they looked before.








Pretty much just follow instructions on package and you get these results












This is what it looked like when finished.







You can see here Passenger side wasn't done yet and Driver Side just finished.


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Old 01-28-2009, 11:42 AM   #20
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i use brake fluid to remove the yellowish haze off my headlights... Works perfect
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Old 01-28-2009, 11:49 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by rpeirats View Post
i use brake fluid to remove the yellowish haze off my headlights... Works perfect
....brake fluid is also an effective paint remover. There are safer, proven methods to refinish headlamps.
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Old 01-28-2009, 04:20 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Kean View Post
....brake fluid is also an effective paint remover. There are safer, proven methods to refinish headlamps.
LoL, very true. Same chemicals found in paint remover products. Pretty toxic stuff in brake fluid. Some of which can degrade polycarbonate, which is what most headlight lenses are made up of now. So you might get rid of discoloration, but you are probably doing more long term damage to the lense. I'd find something made specific for the job, and let brake fluid be brake fluid.
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Old 01-28-2009, 09:57 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TexSurfer View Post
LoL, very true. Same chemicals found in paint remover products. Pretty toxic stuff in brake fluid. Some of which can degrade polycarbonate, which is what most headlight lenses are made up of now. So you might get rid of discoloration, but you are probably doing more long term damage to the lense. I'd find something made specific for the job, and let brake fluid be brake fluid.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kean View Post
....brake fluid is also an effective paint remover. There are safer, proven methods to refinish headlamps.
I think I didnt explain myself very well. I am not talking about large amounts.

What I do is put a polishing cloth over a finger or two, apply a very SMALL amount of brake fluid (2-4 drops) to the finger tips, and slowly and carefully rub the hazy area. The haziness disappears INSTANTLY. Then, with a clean cloth, wipe the area, and then wash with water and soap.

I have been doing this for years without any negative effects. Its cheap, VERY easy, and takes no time.
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Old 01-28-2009, 10:18 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pumaking View Post
I used a product called Crystal View. A lot of people recommended it so I went ahead and tried it. Im happy with it.


Heres it they looked before.



You can see here Passenger side wasn't done yet and Driver Side just finished.


ok, i have been in this battle for awhile too. I tried cleaning mine up by wetsanding, etc. Ive used up to 2500 grit, then used Macguirs Plastic Polish. But, after a few hours they are hazy again due to the super fine scratches from the sanding.

Your lights look really good, how long has it been since you applied this? Do they still look like this half a year later?
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Old 01-28-2009, 10:59 PM   #25
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I use this because I can get it for free from work and it's been working well so far. Have to re-apply every 6 months or so.



http://www.autogeek.net/duragloss-plastic-polish.html
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