Hella 550 Low Rise installed!!! - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 13:55 Thread Starter
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Hella 550 Low Rise installed!!!

It took me about a month for this project has I almost went over my head with the shortening rods. But I got it done. It was pretty easy after the rods where finished and I do have some aim tweaking but over all I am pretty happy with it.

Thanks go out to Tksmr2 and Tvismr2.

How I did mine was I took the metal buckets and attached the bottom the way that Tv did but instead of using L brackets I just bent the stock screw plugs down. Kinda chintzy but did help keep the HL as high as possible. My lights don't go high enough to completely clear the bumper but it's really not that noticeable with the shroud on.







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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:04 Thread Starter
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I am going to have to maybe cut the buckets as the are interfering with the shrouds and I cannot get them to come out at the bottom any more as to raise the aim of the HL's but they are good enough to drive with for now. I really haven't driven the car a lot as you can see from all the dust .

The biggest key is using the springs as like the stock buckets but I lost mine so had to find replacements and drilled holes accordingly has I grinded the corners off the buckets to facilitate the 550 housings. I also retrofitted the H3 to H4 Lamps and used a rubber grommet from Lowes. They get pretty warm but I haven't melted anything yet.





It barely grazes the bumper here on the R side so I might have to file a notch .

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:07
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How-to on how you altered the rods? I'm a big fan of DIY. I'd love to low-rise the MK1.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:16 Thread Starter
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I'm using my own custom lowering rods and brackets.





So overall things look great. Total invested was about 200$ so that's about third of what the Rev 6's run and I think these look better. Now as far as brightness goes I'd say they are better than stock but do give out more focused less outspread light. I really wanted to try some HID's in them but I think from other users that have used HID's in the 550's I've changed my mind. I am very happy with reliability so far. Anyways good luck if you want to attempt this and PM me if you guys have any questions.

Legal: Don't think I am liable if you break something!!! This is a total custom project do so at your own risk.

Last edited by MR2NR15; February 12th, 2011 at 13:57.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MR2NR15
I'm using my own custom lowering rods and brackets.
I more enjoy the fun and adventure of DIY like my HID retrofit project. Thanks for the pic though. I may have to make one myself and start experimenting.

Last edited by David Hawkins; October 21st, 2010 at 07:07.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:26
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Interesting... not like how I did it. Yours lowrise is a bit lower than mine.

I'm not sure I like he way yours are sitting in the stock shrouds. I'll post some more detailed pics of mine.


I might incorporate some of your ideas into my setup. I don't like the light output of my H4 HID's.. but that's b/c we are using a H3 housing. The light pattern is going to be screwed up. So, I might try fitting some projectors in there, or finding some different 'headlights/not driving lights' to use.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:26 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowRocker88
I more enjoy the fun and adventure of DIY like my HID retrofit project. Thanks for the pic though. I may have to make one myself and start experimenting.
Well I started this thinking all I would need is the rods. So I got them and then sure enough I put them on and it wouldn't work. You need the exact hole offset dimensions for the arm that bolts to the motor. I don't have a metal brake so had to have these made at a machine shop. That's the over the head part . Good luck though.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MR2NR15
Well I started this thinking all I would need is the rods. So I got them and then sure enough I put them on and it wouldn't work. You need the exact hole offset dimensions for the arm that bolts to the motor. I don't have a metal brake so had to have these made at a machine shop. That's the over the head part . Good luck though.
Good call. Will still probably DIY seeing as my work has a machine shop.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 14:32 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tksmr2
Interesting... not like how I did it. Yours lowrise is a bit lower than mine.

I'm not sure I like he way yours are sitting in the stock shrouds. I'll post some more detailed pics of mine.


I might incorporate some of your ideas into my setup. I don't like the light output of my H4 HID's.. but that's b/c we are using a H3 housing. The light pattern is going to be screwed up. So, I might try fitting some projectors in there, or finding some different 'headlights/not driving lights' to use.
I grinded the corners of the buckets off and they are not perfectly matched. I then tried to use the L brackets but they pushed the housing down and out too much for my low rise height so I just bent them over. I was thinking the screws would hit the glass and all but it really does feel very secure and now I can fully aim them with the aiming screws. I just have to disconnect the rod first and pull them all the way up to do it
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 16:34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MR2NR15
I grinded the corners of the buckets off and they are not perfectly matched. I then tried to use the L brackets but they pushed the housing down and out too much for my low rise height so I just bent them over. I was thinking the screws would hit the glass and all but it really does feel very secure and now I can fully aim them with the aiming screws. I just have to disconnect the rod first and pull them all the way up to do it

Yea.. I can aim mine using the side screw, but not the bottom screw. Even the Revision 6 lights, you have to disconnect the arm to mess around with the bottom adjustment screw. There is really know way around that,unless you fabricate a custom screw driver.


The only modifcation I made to my metal shrouds was drilling that mounting hole like TVIS did.

I experimented with cutting the shrouds up, and had to buy another shroud after that failed.

I use springs like the little stock springs. I bought a few extras of those from the dealer.

I drilled holes in the plastic hella housing and attached one end of the spring ot that, and the other end clip/attached to the metal shroud

I also have another longer spring holding my lights more secure on just one side.

My pass. side light pops out of it's adjustment screw mount after a long time of riding on rough roads. I'll have to just play around with that to get it right.

Just fine tuning now.. but it's pretty much were I want it.

In the meantime, I'll be searching for headlight replacements, b/c the beam pattern of H3 driving lights, and H4 HID bulbs doesn't really work out that well. It's good enough, but probably a downgrade from stock lights, especially hi-beams, as you will find out.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2010, 23:54
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I'm working on fabbing up some custom headlight buckets to accommodate the headlights on my leisure time...
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old October 30th, 2010, 20:58 Thread Starter
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Well I had a chance to take some pics in the dark....

This is the Low Beams and it is as good as stock. I didn't have the DSLR tonight but the Old 6MP Sony Cybershot did a descent job I just wish I would have remembered the Tri-Pod.



...and here is the high beam which I think are better than stock....



Pic of the lights a lot of glare but anyways......



I tried some video but the cam makes it look like I have candles for headlights. I'll get it done on the DSLR and since DST is changing next week it will be easier for me to have time.

Last edited by MR2NR15; October 30th, 2010 at 21:00.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old November 2nd, 2010, 09:50 Thread Starter
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I seen a drop of water on the inside one of the 550's glass today so I will prob be doing some slight silicone waterproofing but for has much water has I was shooting in the light with a hose open and closed I am very pleased.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2011, 15:08 Thread Starter
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A little update on these as I have had a lot of interest. They are still working great and I get compliments all the time on the looks.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2011, 15:45
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any more pics of the final product installed?
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2011, 18:18 Thread Starter
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Ill get some more. Good as any reason to get the car out before winter .
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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old October 20th, 2011, 19:58
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All I know is to NOT try HID's in the Hella 550 housings. I'm going to switch to an H4 that mimics the look of an HID since I have HID fogs. I'll see how that works. If it doens't work out, I'll either switch to a headlight setup that works good, or change over to all regular H4 bulbs, and change the fogs back to stock bulbs.

My high beams are really worthless (can't see anything b/c the beam pattern spreads out, and is really really short) The low beams from what I remember are no better than stock, but probably about the same as stock.


Otherwise, I really really like the setup. If I can just find the right set of bulbs. I'm not going to mess with my lights until I put my car away in December, or after the first snow.



Two downsides are taking the lights out. You have to remove the front wheels, and unbolt a portion of the front fender liners, unbolt the arms from the motor, and take the lights/shrouds out.

And.. of course the beam pattern is designed for H3's, not H4's.. so you either have to run H3's or you can run H4's and from the looks of it, can get stock like performance out of them.. Just don't try HID's.. unless you think multple HID's inside the glass will work, but might generate too much heat, and crack them.
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old October 23rd, 2011, 12:57 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tksmr2
All I know is to NOT try HID's in the Hella 550 housings. I'm going to switch to an H4 that mimics the look of an HID since I have HID fogs. I'll see how that works. If it doens't work out, I'll either switch to a headlight setup that works good, or change over to all regular H4 bulbs, and change the fogs back to stock bulbs.

My high beams are really worthless (can't see anything b/c the beam pattern spreads out, and is really really short) The low beams from what I remember are no better than stock, but probably about the same as stock.


Otherwise, I really really like the setup. If I can just find the right set of bulbs. I'm not going to mess with my lights until I put my car away in December, or after the first snow.



Two downsides are taking the lights out. You have to remove the front wheels, and unbolt a portion of the front fender liners, unbolt the arms from the motor, and take the lights/shrouds out.

And.. of course the beam pattern is designed for H3's, not H4's.. so you either have to run H3's or you can run H4's and from the looks of it, can get stock like performance out of them.. Just don't try HID's.. unless you think multiple HID's inside the glass will work, but might generate too much heat, and crack them.
Hey Tks glad to see you haven't gone anywhere in a year . I couldn't agree more about HID's in inadequate housings. Ya they look good out of the car but don't downgrade the performance of your headlights trying the next best thing. Using Silvania Silverstar H4's I'm perfectly happy.
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old February 27th, 2015, 12:25 Thread Starter
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Update

Well it's been 3 years now and these have been working great the whole time. I don't drive the car a lot but am very stooked that they have stood the test of time.
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old February 28th, 2015, 15:49
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Nice, the headlights look much better than the stock position.
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