Headlight reflectors

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    Jim, I’m glad the pictures and descriptions helped.

    I should also note that the other side of the bulb socket has a tang that sticks out to help create a snug fit into the reflector.

    I’ll snap a picture of that side as well and post that so you can find the exact socket you need. Everything is still apart so it’s no problem at all.

    Dave, dropping a headlamp lens is always in the back of my mind, too, when I take one off.

    I put a moving blanket down that I fold over a few times in hopes that if I dropped the lens assembly it would miraculously land on the moving blanket and not shatter. :)

    The other thing that worries me is cracking one of the pot metal retaining rings but at least those can be recreated without too much trouble.

    That is also why I figured it would be a good time to leave them apart so I could figure out a ground wire for the assembly.

    Who knows, I may even take the reflectors completely apart and have them re-silvered.


    David: a couple layers of carpet MIGHT save a dropped lens! I’ve never had to test that theory, but usually do put down wither a couple of floor mats or a big sheet of 1″ thick rubber mat when I’m removing a headlight lens, especially on the ’33, those lenses cost around $2k if they can be found. And the ’33 lens is not very securely mounted in my opinion. At least the S80/81 lens is clamped into the headlight trim ring, then the ring clamped to the fender. The ’33 takes two sets of hands to feel safe installing a lens.

    Jim, the reflector that Craig posted photos of is the early design, the later design, use in ’30 was a shallower reflector, and did not have the adjustment rod, since the bulbs were ‘pre focused’. That early ’29 design is almost identical to the Series 80/81, and Series 33/36 headlight reflectors.

    I’ll look and see if I I have a reflector from my ’33 somewhere, and take a photo for you.

    Greg Long


    Thank you Greg. Is the lens for the 30 flat like the 29 or is that an item that carried over on the 30s until they ran out then changed?

    In the back of the car there was a package that had 2 bowed out lenses made from plastic but they are so yellow they would look like fog lights. Has anybody tried using the plastic ones for moulds in ceramic and slumping clear glass into them? Jim


    For what it’s worth

    My 29 Brougham had 7″ modern sealedbeam inserts when I got it. I have used repro 1932 Ford ones that have a flanged prefocus halogen bulb They came as a kit from one of the Antique Ford suppliers (Macs I think. The fit to the diecats Pierce rings were 99% AOK fit. I used Craig’s spacer arrangement to set the lights up. I seem to remember that the originals rings had threaded holes to fit adjustment screws with a groove in the head that fitted to the a recess in the reflector for adjustment. Here, here for the thanks to Craig.




    The PASB 80-1 has drawings and part numbers for Models A, B, And C head, tail and cowl lights.



    the Ford and Pierce versions of the TWOLIGHT lens are slightly different in pattern, but very close. You could grind off the ‘Ford’ logo. Ford lenses are easier to find. Aluminum coating on the reflectors is used by the stage light industry. Very good results and long lasting.


    The flat Twolight lens used on March 1929 through 1931 Model A Fords is a smaller diameter lens than that used on Pierce Arrow.The Twolight lens was used on a number of vehicles in those days and flat ones the correct size might surface at a swap meet.The slightly convex Twolight lens used on Fords from 1932-1934 may fit but the Ford logo will have to be removed.Some 1930 Pierce Arrows had a slightly convex Twolight lens.As for reflectors,one might be able to adapt those from another headlamp of a similar diameter or a firm like Restoration Supply might have a pair that would work plus have the double contact sockets to take the #1000 32-32cp

    bifocal headlight bulb called for in the very late 1929-1935 Pierce Arrow cars.


    Hi Bill, could you post a photo or two of the original headlight lenses on your ’29 roadster?? Does your roaster have it’s horn on the parking light bar, or is it inside, mounted on the cylinder head?

    Greg Long



    Just to clarify my previous post re Ford bits fitting. I was only referring to the reflectors. The lenses do not fit. A Bill says they are too small. Cheers to all



    I will dig out my photo of the headlamp lens on my 1929 Sport Roadster.My car is just before the headlamp design was changed so my lenses are the McKeelites.My reflectors are quite deep and utilize a single filament #1129

    21cp bulb with the resistance dimming system.in fact the part number for the reflectors and sockets is the same as that for the later Series 33 and 36 cars.I also have a drawing I made of the 1929 Pierce Arrow McKeelite which I will dig out of my files and scan.It has the numbers and all details.These are a difficult lens to find.If a person has a chance to get 1929 reflectors,these should fit the 1930 cars and a double contact socket could be fitted.There are lens dealers out there and one of them might have a pair of Twolights that would work.The horn on my Roadster is the Sparton SOS Deluxe mounted on a bracket attached to the engine as original.The Series 143 had an outside horn I believe and after market outside horns were available.


    Looking at the ‘shop manuals’ for both 1929 and 1930, you find the following:

    Factory installs SOS in engine compartment with appropriate connection blocks.

    If front horns are ordered the factory sends one or two additional horns, correct for that year. 1929 horns were used for both years, but a slightly different horn for 1930. A trumpet type used during last part of 1930 was also the standard for 1931.

    These front horns came with new connector blocks replacing the regular ones found in the front of the vehicle.

    Factory correct mountings did not hang the horns on the cross bracket, because the horns will droop. The parts section for the shop manuals identify special replacement brackets which hold the parking lights in place. Because the parking lights are different for 1929 and 1930 the brackets are also different. These allow the horn motors to hang BEHIND the parking lights and at a perfectly flat angle. I sent a 1929 bracket to Rick LeRoy for his car. Most PAS members have never observed this variation. When using more than one horn it is advisable to wire in a relay to each horn in order to reduce the heavy load on the horn switch.


    My 1929 parts books show the the page with a picture on the engine with the Sparton SOS DeLuxe horn in place with a special bracket holding it to the engine.The auxiliary headlights on a 1929 differ from those on a 1930.My factory photos of 1929 Series 133 open cars show none with outside horns.


    Bill, if you look carefully in both the 1929 and 1930 shop manual you will find ( in the back of the book)the part numbers for the special mounts, and are identified as ‘right’ and ‘left’. They mount the the horns from the front edge of the horn motor, not the rear as most owners do. When mounted from the front they assume a natural balance, and always point straight ahead. A separate hole is provided for the horns wiring and is very neat. Special wiring blocks are also identified to be used with the added horns.

    The fact that you have never seen such a factory mounting is that there were few that did so. I have two photos of such mountings.


    My car has the special horn bracket mounted on the driver’s side of the radiator.

    Do you know where the added wiring block is mounted?

    I can take photos of any of these items if anyone needs them.


    There is a wiring block on both sides of the car, about a foot back from the radiator, on the frame. The new blocks replace the standard one and provide 2 more brass posts. I took a piece of black Delrine and used it to make a new one. I didn’t try to use bakelite. Your car was customized by the factory at the request of the owner. Most outside horns are mounted on the left because that is the side the oncoming traffic is on. You should also have the black SOS horn inside the engine compartment.



    Today I received 2 reflectors and they look and measure like you described. The seller said they were for a 1930 so if they are not exactly correct I’ll still use them. They came with sockets and bulbs but the bulbs are not matches.

    I need to make new mounting rings, I’m tired of dealing with pot metal. I took out the gas sending unit yesterday and the pot metal gears in that are cracking also. Thanks again for the pictures and descriptions. Jim


    Jim, you can buy new sending units made with brass gears.


    The 1930 Pierce Arrow headlights used originally the #1110 21-21cp bifocal

    headlight bulb,later when they became legal the lamps could be fitted with the #1000 32-32cp and even later the #1188 50-32cp bulb could be used.My 1941 United Motors auto lamp catalog specifies #1000 for most of the cars from 1930-1934.The #1188 might overload some generators.Restoration Supply does carry double contact sockets which could be adapted but it is important to have these positioned so the lamp filaments are in the right plane for a proper beam.


    William R., my car only has the outside Klaxon horn, there has never been one under the hood as long as it’s been in the family some 50 years.

    I’d like to get under and take some pictures of the junction blocks just to have them on file thanks for the tip on their location.

    Jim, good to hear that you found some reflectors that will work and I’m happy to have helped. If you need anything else just let me know, I still have the headlamp apart.

    William S., thanks for the run down on the bulbs. I have a couple of spares but they don’t match so your post will help me get what I need.



    Are the new sending units universal or application specific?


    I have the double contact sockets and 1 bulb is marked 1000. Are the filiments supposed to be verticle or horizontal? Jim

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