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Discussion Starter #1
Hey folks,

I'm thinking about Nite Shading my tails. Nothing crazy, just a couple of light coats to add a little smoke. For those who have done it, is it something that you later regretted or one of those mods that stuck? I think it'd look slick with silver.

I was thinking about picking up some tails from the scrap yard and doing those instead of my stock ones. I'm not sure if the cops here will care or not, so it would be nice to have my originals intact if I need to throw them back in.

Also, after putting clear on them do they require any maintenance or is it a once and done kind of thing?

:thanks
 

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I've seen a lot of posts from people saying that there's came out spotty or that it looks as though there's a bunch of tiny bugs in it. Others, however, have been successful in making it look flawless.

It goes without saying that you should clean the tail lights before beginning. A member here named Padlock had this to say on the matter from a similar thread:

i used VHT nightshades on my old car and they came out perfect. It does take some patience though to do it right.

you going to want to scuff them with like a 2000 grit sandpaper then wipe clean
spray 2-4 even light coats of VHT (depending on the darkness you want)
spray 3+ coats of clear after the VHT
then your going to want to wetsand with 2000 grit once again then polish them to a shine with meguiars scratch x2.0
 

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i nightshaded my headlights and taillights on my cobalt, and did not regret it. They looked fabulous. They dont require any attention after they are finished, just wash em with soap and water just like the rest of your car. Mine never cracked, flaked, peeled anything like that, but it was only on there for 2 years, idk what they look like now.

But with that being said its a great mod to save you some money instead of having it professionaly done. But if you not good at painting you can make them look real shitty. If your spray to far away youll get orange peel, too close youll get runs. You gotta do it juuuuuust right.
 

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Love mine!
A few tips, they will fade after a season in the sun, so if youre doing them now, I'd suggest 3 coats of night shade. Don't be worried if they look REALLY dark, they still let a good amount of light threw. I dont suggest doing the headlights however, when the lights are on, it makes the lights look purple, spotty, and uneven (JMO)

I took a palm sander to mine with 150grit paper, then 1000grit by hand, then 200 by hand. Wash, dry, paint. Do light coats or it can get the orange peel effect. I did a light coat every 20 minutes, and after the 2nd clear coat, did two heavier coats. Don't handle the lights for a few hours after your last coat...you don't want to spend all that time working on them just to get a finger print on them when theyre still sticky.

I also didnt wax or wetsand them after the clear coats, just put them back on. Still look flawless after a car wash over a year later.
 

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I've done this before i just took the tail lights out, few simple bolts, and masked the back end and went 3 coats on it. After about a week I wanted to take it off ( which will lead me to a question later). But all you need to take it off is a little gasoline. Damp a rag with the gasoline hold it up to the tail light for about 3 seconds and go to town scrubbing it off, it all comes off really easy.

But my question is, what if someone hits me? Can my insurance deny to pay for it? I have bumper to bumper insurance.
 

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Lol I don't think so. The argument is if someone rear ends you then they are to close to begin with and your tail lights still work. I am however gonna buy led bulbs after I vht mine. Iv had all the supplies for over a month and just haven't done it lol
 

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Yes leds. Are way brigther
 

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My friend got rearended and the people behind him said they couldnt see his tail lights because of the tint. His tint wasn't crazy dark either but since they were tinted the insurance company wouldnt cover his car. Something to think about.


In Nova Scotia its illegal aswell, maybe in an area that its not illegal you may be fine and still recieve coverage
 

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I thought it had to do with visibility at 500ft away?
I mean, cars come with tinted tail lights out of the factory now.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yeah, it seems it's a bit of a gray area. As long as you meet visibility distance requirements you should be okay. However, they could get you for alteration of safety equipment, I suppose.

In MN, these are the statutes that I know of that apply.

169.57 VEHICLE SIGNALS
Subdivision 1.Stoplights.
(a) Any vehicle may be equipped and when required under this chapter, shall be equipped with at least two stop lamps on the rear which shall emit a red or yellow light and which shall be actuated upon application of the service (foot) brake and which may, but need not be, incorporated with the tail lamps and which shall be plainly visible and understandable from a distance of 100 feet to the rear during normal sunlight and at night.

Subd. 4.Alteration of stop lamp prohibited.
On a vehicle that must be equipped with a single center high-mounted stop lamp under federal motor vehicle safety standards, and on any other vehicle equipped with a similar stop lamp, a person may not alter the stop lamp by the addition of an overlay or other device, or install a replacement lens, if the alteration or installation alters or obscures any portion of the lamp or affects the intensity of light emitted.

I would say use common sense and don't compromise your safety equipment for the sake of appearance. But if you do, understand you might get pulled over, you could get a ticket, and you could cause an accident. Not the best trade.

Might be safer to buy DOT approved lamps with a stock tint, which is what I just did. I'm not sure they can nail you for that, but who knows?
 

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I wish I still had my write up for when I did it.

Just a real brief synopsis.

1) Remove Lights
2)Lightly sand with 1000grit Sandpaper
3)Remove teh dust and check for an even sand all around.
4)Clean with warm water and hint of soap. Towel dry.
5) Lightly coat the lenses with your VHT Nightshades paint and place infront of fan.
6) Repeat 5 until a shade darker than you want.*******
7) Clear Coat 5-6 Coats allow to dry in front of fan.
8) Wet sand with 1000 and 1200 Grit Sandpaper
9) Buff with Rubbing Compound and Meguiars Plastx
10) Seal with your Wax of choice.

Touching back on 5, I didnt realize that the sun would lighten it up as much as it did. When I first night shaded my old car is was a little darker than I had wanted, but hey, I worked night shift. Its hard to tell how dark it is when your paint by garage light. A few weeks later they looked perfect. Take your time, if you screw up you can easily sand it off and redo it.

If you have anyother questions let me know
 

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Did mine.. Got 2 tickets in one day.. And after u clear them.. Sand them light with 2000 grit then rubbing compound to make shinny, but the cops will bug u
 

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prep the tails, prep again, prep again, and prep again until satisfied lol.. if you want them to look good and stay that way, you have to make sure its done RIGHT...
 

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I thought it had to do with visibility at 500ft away?
I mean, cars come with tinted tail lights out of the factory now.
Like I said its illegal where I live. Absolutely no modifying of safety equipment. There is no law where I live about distance. I was hassled about one of my cars at least 15 times in 6 months, but only got warnings.
 

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^yup, you need to check with your state statutes on the issue. I only got warnings when I had mine. I ended up buying the tinted LED tails and since they meet OEM standards they are legal.
 
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