: Tinting your tailights ***EDU*** with pics!



ZaC851
03-28-08, 04:54 PM
Been wanting to do mine for awhile, but just didnt have the time. I finally ordered the stuff earlier in the week and did it yesterday. The process is very simple and the supplies will cost about 20 dollars total. The total time to complete this is about a day. The total working time is no more than 1 hour. The longest process is letting the paint dry.

This is what you will need.

VHT Nite Shades Spray Tint. (I ordered mine from Summit Racing)
Clear Coat. (I used duplicolor)
Masking Tape. (Assuming you want to keep your reverse lense clear)
2000 grit Wet sand paper.
Small razor blade.
Rubbing alcohol
Microfiber towels

Some of the supplies

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic1.jpg

You will also need some sort of rubbing compound to remove swirls and lights scratches. A buffer would also make this job much easier than by hand. I already have this because I like to detail my truck alot.

Anyway on to the process. Start by remove the tail lights. To do this you have to open the rear door and there is 2 screws that hold the lights in. Undo these 2 screws for each light and the lights come right now.. Take out the bulbs and your done.

The first thing I did was tape up the lights with the masking tape. After you tape it up, carefully cut the excess out where the tape fits the perfect shape of the reverse light.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic2.jpg


After that take your wet sandpaper and sand over the entire light. Make sure to keep the paper wet by dipping it back in a water bucket often. Once you're done, your lights should appear slightly hazy...this process should takeno more than 5 minutes to do both lights. I know its kinda hard to tell in the pic since it was dark when I took this pic.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic3.jpg


Once you have wet sanded both lights make sure they are completely dry, and take your rubbing alcohol and give them a good wipe down. This ensures that they are free of dust, grime and fingerprints.

The Next process is taking the Spray on tint, and painting them. I went fairly light just enough to coat them for each coat. Depending on how dark you want to go should tell you how many coats to put on. I did my taillights, and top brake light and did a total of 3 coats and used 1 full can and mine are very dark. I waited about 45 minutes in between each coat of tint. Use your own judgment. Heres a picture after the paint.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic4.jpg

After the last coat of tint, I let them dry for about 5 hours. After that its time to wet sand again. Just the same as before keep the paper wet and sand it until the whole light is very hazy looking. Again this should take no more than 5 minutes.. After that I went ahead and peeled off the masking tape and dryed all the water off. This is what you should have now.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic5.jpg

Now that we are done with the tint..its time to put the clear on them to protect them. I went fairly heavy on the clear. I wanted to make sure they were protected very well. Once again I waited about 30-45 minutes in between the clear coats. I did a total of 3 HEAVY coats, but not so heavy where it would not cause the paint to run. After That I let them dry over night.

This morning I went out to get them. The first thing you want to do now is lightly wet sand them again now that the clear coat is on. Once again they are going to appear slightly hazy. This is to smooth them out, and get any dust that may have settled into the paint. The process is the same as before.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic6.jpg

After that you will want to take your rubbing compound or polish and buff them to a brilliant shine. Having a buffer will make this process take about 3-4 minutes per light. I would imagine the process will take A LOT longer doing it by hand. And here is the finished product.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic7.jpg.

After you have buffed them back to a shine, you will want to put a couple coats of your favorite wax on there to protect them, and then bolt them back up. And heres what it looks like when your done..

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/pic8.jpg

hcvone
03-28-08, 06:03 PM
They are dark, it looks great with your black truck. :)

JD001249
03-28-08, 07:17 PM
That looks awesome! Thanks for the step by step, I am going to do this in a few weeks. I will post my pix when done.

DLE
03-28-08, 09:03 PM
Holy crap, that turned out good! Great job! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Can you snap a pic of how it looks when you turn on your lights?

ZaC851
03-28-08, 10:34 PM
Heres some night shot pics. I'll get some daytime shots tommorrow. There are not quite as bright (obviously because I went so dark)...But they are plainly visible and I had my girlfriend follow me today with no issues seeing them during the daylight

Just the lights.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/DSC01089_800x600.jpg

pressing the brakes.

http://i195.photobucket.com/albums/z207/zac851/DSC01091_800x600.jpg

DaveH28
03-28-08, 10:47 PM
you did a great job on those... my wife wont go for it on her black truck, i wonder how they would look on a white EXT... anyone have any pics of blacked-out EXTs?

Rolex
03-28-08, 10:52 PM
Those look outstanding with the black truck. :thumbsup:

srt
03-30-08, 09:52 AM
****in sweet brah, I'll be doing mine this week if I have the time. I'll also take pics 4 y'all.

sam hamm
04-06-08, 02:26 PM
those look nice

JD001249
04-07-08, 10:10 AM
ZaC851 - how much would you charge to do mine? :worship:

ZaC851
04-08-08, 05:46 AM
ZaC851 - how much would you charge to do mine? :worship:


:hmm: No idea. Buy the the tint and send them to me. I guess only about 15-20 dollars for me to do them. The real cost for you though is going to be you buying the tint, and then paying for shipping to have them sent to me and then me sending them back to you. Judging by prices for shipping on escalade tailights on ebay it looks like everyone is charging $15 up to $30 dollars for shipping. You'd also be without them for about a week.

Up to you though.

JD001249
04-08-08, 09:01 AM
Where are you located, I am in St. Louis.

ZaC851
04-08-08, 03:17 PM
Birmingham Alabama

PhiNally
04-08-08, 06:45 PM
Where did you get the 2000 grit sand paper, my autozone did not have any? Thank you, looking forward to do this this weekend.

PhiNally
04-08-08, 06:46 PM
Forgot to ask this as well. How do you remove the third brake light? I can get the two tail lights but am unsure about the third. Thank you.

ZaC851
04-08-08, 08:52 PM
Where did you get the 2000 grit sand paper, my autozone did not have any? Thank you, looking forward to do this this weekend.


I got them at autozone. First autozone I went to only had up to 1500. Another one I went to had it. May have to check around.

For your third brake light. You will have to open the rear hatch window. Not the whole hatch itself but just the window. There will be 3 screws that hold it on at the top after the windows been open. Undo the screws and pull it off and there is only 1 small plug.

PhiNally
04-08-08, 08:57 PM
Thanks a lot, I got all the supplies and can't wait to do it. They look great on your truck. Thanks again.

T-Giv
03-19-09, 07:46 PM
Man I really want mine done! I don't know if I trust myself to get it right first time. Would you seriously consider doing it if I shipped them to you?

oldworld
03-19-09, 09:19 PM
NICE JOB ON THE LIGHTS!!!!
Do you know if the way you have them painted up..........are they legal???
I live in sh$Tsville PA and the local police here look for anything and everything to bust you balls.

As far as removing the upper third light............very easy. Instead of opening the liftgate, only lift the glass...glass ONLY.
You will see behind where the light bar is......3 phillips head screws with washers. Very easy to remove. Mine were pretty loose. May want to check them anyway to keep them tight.

ZaC851
03-19-09, 09:53 PM
Man I really want mine done! I don't know if I trust myself to get it right first time. Would you seriously consider doing it if I shipped them to you?

Sorry man. few months ago I would have done it. Now..with job and school...not possible...Honestly...i would try to tackle it yourself. You cant really mess up. if you do mess them up...use a little paint remover...or just let them dry and sand them back smooth....I'm definitely no painter.




NICE JOB ON THE LIGHTS!!!!
Do you know if the way you have them painted up..........are they legal???
I live in sh PA and the local police here look for anything and everything to bust you balls.

No, far from legal. cops dont bother around here with that. I've had 5% on every vehicle i've owned for the past 4 years without a problem.

T-Giv
04-26-09, 11:58 AM
Zac,
I just finished mine and for some reason after 3 coats they aren't dark enough for my liking. I can still see some red in them, they look maroon now. What would be the best way to go about removing the clear coat and putting some more VHT on them? I just must have not put thick enough coats on them. I am psycho about drips. Haha

jmelwak
04-29-09, 04:09 AM
dude sweet! thanks for sharing my black lade is gonna look sick with that!

CEPMAN
08-25-09, 12:39 PM
I must say - pretty awesome!!! no LED tails for me - I think this looks better!

ZaC851
08-27-09, 11:24 PM
Zac,
I just finished mine and for some reason after 3 coats they aren't dark enough for my liking. I can still see some red in them, they look maroon now. What would be the best way to go about removing the clear coat and putting some more VHT on them? I just must have not put thick enough coats on them. I am psycho about drips. Haha

I know its a old post but if anyone else is wondering...

just sand them down

There was a post I read on another forum somewhere about completly restoring them back to factory look too..