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Ford OBS Pre 1998 Strobes

Discussion in 'Strobe Lighting' started by linckeil, Oct 25, 2012.

  1. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    Anyone running an OBS Ford with strobes?

    I want to keep it all looking stock - no light bars or strobes mounted in the grill or bumper. I'd like strobes that work in existing factory light housing while the light can still perform the job it was intended to from the factory.

    I like the cab/clearance light strobes too, but i've heard that they can get so hot they melt the housings - unless you go with a kit from atomic (and atomic doesn't make a kit for pre '98 fords anyway...)

    just looking for ideas on what people have done. what's worked well? what hasn't?
     
  2. Triton2286

    Triton2286 Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    So basically you want hide-a-way's
     
  3. Mems

    Mems Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 202

    Go LED. Buy two sets of Vertex look a likes from strobes n more and get a 1" step bit. Pull out your tail lights and corners up front and 1" drill holes in those lenses where you see fit that they would work well. Wire up a positive and find a good spot for a ground for each set. Combine the third wire on them if you wan to sync them together. Make sure that you use the red leds if your putting them behind red tailight lenses for the best output per Lious at Strobes n More.
     
  4. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    thanks - great info. i'll look into it. what would i expect to spend in parts?

    any thoughts on the cab lights? that would be neat, but not necesary. all i've heard is that stobes in there would melt the housings.
     
  5. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    so you mention using red LEDs if putting them in a red tailight bulb. should i also get an amber LEDs for the front amber marker lights?

    you also mention vertex "look a likes". are these cheap knock offs? i can't find them. all i see is the actual vertex's. not sure i'd want to go with a knock off anyway, but looking into all option right now.

    thanks.
     
  6. Mems

    Mems Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 202

    LED dont get anywhere near as hot as the standard strobes. Sometimes they can have a little less intensity than a standard 120 watt strobe but they do provide adequate warning power.

    Click Here. This is the set of two "Vertex" lights that strobes n more makes. Great great product, no knock off here at all. Virtually the same as the whelen, just cheaper.

    Ok I just did a search on a Ford taillight from 1998 both f150 and f250 as im not sure which one you have and i could see no amber in the tail light. I would go with a set of the red of the link above for the tail lights behind the red section of the tail light unless your putting them in the clear housings of the back up light, then Id go amber.

    Same with the front. I'd put a set of white of the above link in the corner turn signal lights. It looks like per pictures online that there is an amber lens in the corner turn signal light of your truck (unless you or someone switched to all clear lenses on the front) which would allow you to have the brightness of clear led strobes (clear is a little more intense than amber) but the reflective properties of an amber lens. You wouldnt be losing out much if you decided to use amber in that space either, just make sure you wire your front and rear sets to separate switches because after an extended period of time, especially at night you can start to become dazed by the strobing effect off the back of the plow, especially when your transporting it. The reflections will have you seeing them in your sleep for days so its nice to have an option to turn them off separately of the rear if needed and on when you do.

    There are a couple different companies with cab lights and leds in them that wont burn em up. They can get really expensive quick though, almost close to the cost of a nice mini bar that would work better. Most cab lights when lit and even if strobing cant be seen to the rear.

    here is a link to some strobing cab lights and you can see how quickly the price can jump up. Most are all the same. Click here

    A cheaper route would be to do your own and buy a set of these if you can still find them, if you dont already have cab lights. The lights inside should be led's if you do, so find a suitable swap out for them. Click here for link to cab lights. Then buy an Show me LED flasher and wire them all up and you can be in for a little more than half the cost plus time. Just a thought.

    Let us know if you have anymore questions.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2012
  7. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    thanks - the link you posted also had a video which was helpful.

    my truck is a 96 F350. the amber i was mentioning is the front marker lights. i would put red in the tailights and amber in the front marker lights - but it sounds like you recommend white in the front marker lights.

    and i would want to wire the rears on a seperate switch then the fronts.

    thanks for the info on the cab lights. my truck does have the factory cab lights. i'll start with strobes in the 4 corners and then maybe consider them in the cab lights down the road on a third switch.
     
  8. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    ok - so i did a bit more homework...

    it appears the only color flashing light i can operate would be amber. not a problem for the fronts as thats what i was intending anyway. but what about the rears? my rear lights are red and white (for reverse lights). what if i put an amber LED in the white reverse light pod? i think that would solve my issue? i originally wanted a red LED in the taillight housing, but i cannot show a red strobe legally.

    purpose of these lights is to help keep me out of trouble by making me more visible. but if i display the wrong colors, then i'll be in a different kind of trouble....

    wondering if strobes are even worth it?
     
  9. Mems

    Mems Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 202

    Oh they are worth it. Its nice to have the stock look as well as some warning to the rear and the sides.

    I'd do the amber in the clear back up light lenses, but understand as well that while the back up light is on, you'll lose some of the intensity of the amber strobe. Nature of the beast. Which is why you dont really want to put strobing lights in the with the headlights because when the headlights are on you lose a lot of the strobing effect.

    I just looked up your truck and do recommend white behind the orange markers in the front. It is more intense and will be seen further, especially 90 degrees perpendicular to the front of the truck, which is most important. The orange in the marker lights doesnt filter out as much of the light spectrum from the clear led bulbs as the red taillights would. Again, Id go white leds behind the orange markers in front and amber led's in the clear lenses of the backup lights.
     
  10. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    thanks for talking me through this.

    so whites up front behind the amber lense and i will still emit an amber color, right?
     
  11. fordtruck661

    fordtruck661 Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 404

    It will but it is best if you put the same color led behind the same color lense. If you put clear it will get filtered out and not be a bright as if you put a amber. Here is a video of what Im talking about you can skip to 1:30 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3I7jRSwZ2nA

    Also just a heads up when I up led hideaways in my truck in the reverse light I had to grind down some of the metal on the bed to make them fit. It really tight but you can make them work. they do fit much easier in the brake light.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2012
  12. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    so i ordered the strobesnmore hideaway kit in amber.

    http://www.strobesnmore.com/product_info.php?products_id=1318

    i only ordered one set that i will put in the front. depending on how i like them, i'll get another kit for the rear.

    the harness has 4 wires on it: 1) red - 12v 2) black - ground 3) yellow - hook up to sync with other lights 4) blue - change flash pattern.

    so being i have only one set, the yellow wire will not be hooked up right now. the red will be run through a on/off switch, and the black obviously grounded.

    my question is about the blue wire. per the instructions, when the blue wire is grounded, it will change flash patterns. i am thinking i will have a on/off switch (toggle or rocker style), and then a push botton momentary switch mounted next to it that will change flash patterns. Is this how others have done it? I'd like some input before i begin installation.
     
  13. fordtruck661

    fordtruck661 Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 404

    First I would hook up the sync wire if you want the light to ether flash together or alternate with each other. If you dont hook them up the light will just flash when ever they want.

    Second if it is a ground to change flash patterns then yes you can hook them up to a switch that is grounded.

    Just make sure they are both on the same flash pattern before you hook them up.
     
  14. linckeil

    linckeil PlowSite.com Addict
    from CT
    Messages: 1,265

    the kit includes 2 lights and runs off one control box, so the 2 lights in a kit are synced. the sync function is needed if i buy another kit for the rear and would like to sync up front and rear kits.
     
  15. fordtruck661

    fordtruck661 Senior Member
    from CT
    Messages: 404

    oh yeah I forgot it was kit........lets see a video once you get them put it.
     
  16. Mems

    Mems Senior Member
    from Maine
    Messages: 202

    You'll love em. i waiting for a few days to see if they do a sale for Veterans Day (which is also my birthday). Ill buy the exact same thing. Im going to be doing the rears first due to wanting people seeing me as I back out of driveways. I usually run my 4 ways anyways during storms in driveways. Its all about not getting taken out while driving backwards for me. Great purchase and yes videos all around. We are all visual people here and we love to see the fruits of other labor.