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E46 (1999 - 2006)
The fourth generation 3 Series (E46 chassis) was introduced in 1999 and set the standard for engineering and performance during it's years of production including being named to Car & Driver's 10 best list every one of those years! ! -- View the E46 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 05-26-2009, 05:20 PM
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UncleDon UncleDon is offline
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Dimming and Tinting EAS Aurora Angel Eyes

In my opinion, LED Angel eyes are a little too harsh and too bright, unless you want to use them as daytime running lights.
In an effort to get a more subtle, OEM look, I dimmed and tinted my LED Angel Eyes.

I installed an adjustable dimmer on my EAS Auroras to tone them down so they would look good at dusk and at night.
I don't use them during the day. (BTW, these are the new, 15% brighter v1.1 Auroras.)





To install the dimmer, I spliced into the main power wire between the relay and the main power source. I wired them to come on with the fog lights and I do not use the wire that fades them on and off with the interior lights.

The rheostat, plastic "project box", and the knob are all from Radio Shack. The cost of all three parts was less than $10.

Installing the dimmer was easy...

- Just drill three holes in the project box.
- Solder the wires to the rheostat.
-Assemble the project box and attach it to the firewall. ( I attached it with HD velcro. )





I also "tinted" my LED Angel Eyes to reduce the individual LED, "pearl necklace" look. Auroras use a pattern that is moulded into the lens to diffuse the light and help blend the individual LEDs. However, that pattern is only on the front of the lens, leaving the sides of the lens clear. When viewed at an angle, the individual LEDs show up much more than when they are viewed straight on.

To fix this I tinted the sides of the rings with silver vinyl, the type of vinyl you would get at a sign shop. (1/4" x 11" strips) Silver vinyl is quite thin so 50% to 60% of the light still shines through, but it is diffused much better and the "pearl necklace" refections are all but gone.

The pictures below will give you an idea of how the silver vinyl looks and works...







BTW... you could experiment with different colored or translucent vinyls to get different colors or different looks, like carbon fiber patterned vinyls.
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Last edited by UncleDon; 05-27-2009 at 07:01 AM.
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  #2  
Old 05-26-2009, 05:25 PM
ThreeTwoFive ThreeTwoFive is offline
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Nice! I might try something like this.,..
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  #3  
Old 05-26-2009, 06:59 PM
Spdu4ia Spdu4ia is offline
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good job!... the brightness is one of the reasons I got the 30LED versions
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  #4  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:08 PM
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SlimKlim SlimKlim is offline
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Excellent work! I've installed a dimmer as well, but if you're a well respected surgeon, Im a monkey with a knife. I made a dimmer for the inner and outer pair though.
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  #5  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:09 PM
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Very good job!

Even though I like it bright
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  #6  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:09 PM
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Keyser Soze Keyser Soze is offline
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This thread rules

can you list the part #'s from Radio shack please?
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  #7  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solidjake View Post
Very good job!

Even though I like it bright
I can almost see daylight under your front right tire in your sig.
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  #8  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:18 PM
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Keyser Soze Keyser Soze is offline
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Jake wants his car to be seen from outer space and to scorch peoples eye's out.

next step = two of these bad boys on his hood

http://www.magnalight.com/pc-664-71-...ndlepower.aspx



Quote:
Originally Posted by SlimKlim View Post
I can almost see daylight under your front right tire in your sig.
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  #9  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:21 PM
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Solidjake Solidjake is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SlimKlim View Post
I can almost see daylight under your front right tire in your sig.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyser Soze View Post
Jake wants his car to be seen from outer space and to scorch peoples eye's out.

next step = two of these bad boys on his hood

http://www.magnalight.com/pc-664-71-...ndlepower.aspx


You guys know me oh so well.

I'll try to get a wheel off the ground on the next run
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  #10  
Old 05-26-2009, 07:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyser Soze View Post
This thread rules

can you list the part #'s from Radio shack please?
25-Ohm 3-Watt Rheostat
Model: 271-265 | Catalog #: 271-265

Project Enclosure (3x2x1")
Model: 270-1801 | Catalog #: 270-1801

Communications Style Control Knob
Model: 274-402 | Catalog #: 274-402
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  #11  
Old 05-26-2009, 08:01 PM
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SlimKlim SlimKlim is offline
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Holy fricken crap your car is cool, a touring with M-tech II and 135's?

Tell me its a sport package 5-spd.
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  #12  
Old 05-26-2009, 08:21 PM
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UncleDon UncleDon is offline
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Originally Posted by SlimKlim View Post
Holy fricken crap your car is cool, a touring with M-tech II and 135's?

Tell me its a sport package 5-spd.
Thanks for the kind words...
I ordered it late in 2004 so it is one of the last U.S. spec E46 wagons built.
It does have the sport package and a 5 speed.
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  #13  
Old 05-26-2009, 09:52 PM
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I will definitely do this. Nice job.
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  #14  
Old 05-26-2009, 10:56 PM
rabbitw00t rabbitw00t is offline
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looks great. How sweet would it be to blast some techno and get some crazy lights on the top of the car like in cash cab while dialing your angel eye dimmers from high to low, back and forth. Cops would drop their doughnuts on site and there'd be multiple lane accidents on every interstate you ride on.
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  #15  
Old 05-27-2009, 03:50 AM
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Quote:
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Thanks for the kind words...
I ordered it late in 2004 so it is one of the last U.S. spec E46 wagons built.
It does have the sport package and a 5 speed.
Now you just need to do an S54 swap into that wagon.
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  #16  
Old 05-27-2009, 06:04 AM
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I like the part about wiring the angel eyes to come on with the fog lights. How did you do that?
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  #17  
Old 05-27-2009, 06:05 AM
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burnoutfad123 burnoutfad123 is offline
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Good Job, Cool idea, I think it would be cool to dim the outside and leave inside bright. I might try that when i get mine!
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  #18  
Old 05-27-2009, 09:08 AM
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SmokedE46 SmokedE46 is offline
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AWESOME job, I noticed ur EAS leds dont seem to have the pearl necklace effect, like the orians do. Is that due to the tint that you put on OR the fact that EAS has solved the issue. We the time comes I will upgrade to EXACTLY what youve done. Cold starts on ccfls is gettin me pissed. Again great job, more pics perhaps from further away?
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  #19  
Old 05-27-2009, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokedE46 View Post
AWESOME job, I noticed ur EAS leds dont seem to have the pearl necklace effect, like the orians do. Is that due to the tint that you put on OR the fact that EAS has solved the issue. We the time comes I will upgrade to EXACTLY what youve done. Cold starts on ccfls is gettin me pissed. Again great job, more pics perhaps from further away?
That's in effect to the ring that we use - it properly diffuses the light for a uniform pattern, compared to the Orion V2s that simply magnify it.
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  #20  
Old 05-27-2009, 09:22 AM
Lex5 Lex5 is offline
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Very nice on the dimmer but quick question. Is the vinyl tape heat resistant?
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  #21  
Old 05-27-2009, 09:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Lex5 View Post
Very nice on the dimmer but quick question. Is the vinyl tape heat resistant?
Premium vinyls are designed to last for years of outdoor use. The outer lens on LED angel eyes doesn't ever get hot enough to be a problem.
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  #22  
Old 05-27-2009, 10:08 AM
Spdu4ia Spdu4ia is offline
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i wouldn't worry about the led's heating them up but the bulb that BLASTS through the middle of the ring.
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  #23  
Old 05-27-2009, 02:06 PM
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jryguyi jryguyi is offline
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Nice job on the dimmer, but lets ditch that and see more pics of that awesome wagon
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  #24  
Old 06-06-2009, 12:46 PM
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Keyser Soze Keyser Soze is offline
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I am so bummed. I ordered these parts and installed them, wiring them up and soldering per your pics. The dimmer function didn't work. Not sure why. Eyes would come on at 1 million candlelight, twist knob.....nothing happens. Wonder if I got a defective rheostat but I doubt it. Only other thing I can think of is that since I have mine kicking on from the interior light it over-rides the rheostat. Hell if I know. I hate doing electronic crap to my car why don't the damn manufacturers or resellers include a damn dimmer and add $20 to the price? GRRR


Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleDon View Post
25-Ohm 3-Watt Rheostat
Model: 271-265 | Catalog #: 271-265

Project Enclosure (3x2x1")
Model: 270-1801 | Catalog #: 270-1801

Communications Style Control Knob
Model: 274-402 | Catalog #: 274-402
__________________
2013 F10 535i M-Sport, Sophisto Grau, 6-speed MT
2011 E90 335i Sport, Jet Black, Sport Auto, Performance Edition
2002 E46 330i Sport, Jet Black, 5-speed MT, lots of upgrades
2001 E46 330Ci Sport, Steel Grey, 5-speed MT....and more

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  #25  
Old 06-06-2009, 12:51 PM
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wheel-man wheel-man is offline
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Nice job, but I like the 'Pearl Necklace' effect
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