Go Back   Corvette Forum > C5 Corvettes, 1997 - 2004 > C5 General
Sign in using an external account
Register Forgot Password?
Register Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read FAQ Vendor Directory
Search
C5 General
General C5 Corvette Discussion not covered in Tech Sponsored by
Bud's Chevy

Welcome to Corvetteforum.com!
Welcome to Corvetteforum.com.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, at no cost, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, join Corvetteforum.com today!


Corvette Store
 
 
C7 Parts & Accessories
C6 Parts & Accessories
C5 Parts & Accessories
C4 Parts & Accessories
C3 Parts & Accessories
C2 Parts & Accessories
C1 Parts & Accessories
Wheels & Tires
Sponsored Ads
 
 
Vendor Directory
  
Reply
 
 
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 07-25-2007, 11:01 PM   #1
Patches
CF Senior Member
Support Corvetteforum!
 
Patches's Avatar
 
Member Since: Sep 2001
Location: Lake Elsinore, CA
Default Headlight gear fix (highly pictorialized)

After the recent fun I had upgrading Mrs. Patches' A4 drivetrain, I was coincidentally in the garage one evening when Mrs. Patches pulled in and proceeded to lower her extended headlight modules. During said process of lowering the headlights, the driver's motor gear assembly was heard to emit a horrendous rat-a-tat-a-tat of a machine-gun cacophony that announced the arrival of the headlight gear malfunction known all too well to these forums. This was a rather disparaging occurrence considering the tender age (mileage) of this particular C5 which was still a bit south of the 5-digit mark.

All disconcertions put aside, I set about ordering a couple of repair kits, one for the existing ailing driver's gear and one for the when-it-rains-it-pours failure of the passenger-side headlight I predict is shortly to follow. I decided to only change the broken driver's side so as not to totally shoot the weekend to Hades and because I just wasn't in the mood.

I ordered and received the latest kits from Top Down Solutions which is essentially the same kit sold by another vendor and contains the same reinforcement T-bracket and started the repair (with a couple of modifications to the included instructions).

The kit contents. Top left-clockwise: Silicone lubricant, T-bracket with rubber bushing and plastic washer, brass gear, rubber gear insert, adhesive mixing stick and Urethane two-part, quick-cure adhesive.
Click the image to open in full size.

I raised the hood and layed out protective mats and towels. Here's the headlight I'm about to tear into. Then I raised the headlights by turning the stalk all the way and then backing it off one click to turn the headlights off but leave them up. I then disconnected the negative terminal on the battery.
Click the image to open in full size.

A closeup of the gearmotor assembly.
Click the image to open in full size.

I unscrewed the three Phillips screws from the plastic shroud . . . Click the image to open in full size.

. . . and the four Torx screws from the painted headlight cover and removed them.
Click the image to open in full size.

A rear view of the gearmotor and one of the mounting bolts.
Click the image to open in full size.

First, I disconnected the main headlight connector . . .
Click the image to open in full size.

. . . and then the two connectors behind the high and low-beam bulbs.
Click the image to open in full size.

Front view of the gearmotor. Here you see the three mounting bolts. There are nuts on each bolt that need to be removed. There is also a nut on the other end of the center shaft you see that goes through the offending gear we're looking to replace. I used a gear wrench and a box-end wrench to unbolt these and was very careful not to drop the nuts as it's a tight fit for my hands in there. Removing the center nut allowed me to slip the linkage arm off the gear shaft and that immediately caused the headlight to freefall/pivot so I was careful in easing it down as I removed the gearmotor.
Click the image to open in full size.

The instructions indicated that the headlight assembly should be loosened and slid forward to allow removal of the gearmotor but I found I could remove it without doing that. Here's the extracted component.
Click the image to open in full size.

And here is the free-hanging headlight assembly.
Click the image to open in full size.

The next step is to use two small screwdrivers to pop the gear cover off. The cover appears to be ultrasonically welded or glued.
Click the image to open in full size.

I was careful and slowly worked my way around the cover until it popped off in one piece.
Click the image to open in full size.

The exposed gear shows no obvious sign of damage - yet.
Click the image to open in full size.

I removed the gear and shaft.
Click the image to open in full size.

Here's the exposed gear case. Note that the worm is metal.
Click the image to open in full size.

Finally we can see signs of damage to the gear on the teeth at the bottom of the picture. Doesn't seem like much, but there's not a whole lot of engagement to begin with.
Click the image to open in full size.

The damaged teeth are at the top in this pic.
Click the image to open in full size.

I cleaned up the gear case, installed the rubber insert into the brass gear, lubed up the gear, shaft and worm with the silicone grease, slid the gear and plastic washer onto the shaft and then the gear and shaft into the case. Then I prepared for the adhesive application.
Click the image to open in full size.

The instructions warn you to work fast when gluing the cover back on because there is only about a 5-6 minute working time once the two-part urethane is mixed. They aren't kidding either. It's important that both surfaces have adhesive applied to them and that it is a contiguous ring all the way around the edge of the case to ensure the case is watertight.
Click the image to open in full size.

I clamped the cover snugly to maintain pressure while the adhesive cured overnight. I used the remaining adhesive to form a bead around the outside of the case/cover interface.
Click the image to open in full size.

The next morning, I removed the clamps and checked for a good bond. Then I slid the T-bracket onto the shaft with the larger end of the rubber bushing towards to cover to retain it. The T-bracket was added to the kit after reports of cover separation due to adhesive failures caused by axial load of the gear shaft. The bracket helps to keep the cover in place. I also slipped a metal washer between each bracket arm and the cover to take up the space in between - this was one of my additions to the procedure.
Click the image to open in full size.

Next, I reinstalled the gearmotor and reassembled the headlight in the reverse order of disassembly, making sure to slide the linkage onto the gear shaft in the proper orientation. Incidentally, the headlight position was out of synch with the passenger side because I installed the gear shaft in a different position than where it was before I removed it (it was about halfway up). Not a problem because I simply manually rotated the motor worm using the **** on the end of the motor until the headlight was in the fully raised position. Finally, I reconnected the battery, tested the headlight raising/lowering action and confirmed it was working properly.
Click the image to open in full size.

All fixed with only a modicum of fuss.

Last edited by Patches; 07-26-2007 at 09:46 PM.
Patches is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2007, 11:34 PM   #2
csexton
CF Senior Member
 
csexton's Avatar
 
Member Since: Jul 2004
Location: Danville Virginia
Default

Great write-up. Thanks Patches

Chuck
csexton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2007, 11:42 PM   #3
DirteeDave
CF Senior Member
 
DirteeDave's Avatar
 
Member Since: Mar 2004
Location: Foothill Ranch CA
Default

Thanks for the excellent writeup Patches. I'm going to be tackling this in the near future and these pics and instructions will be invaluable.
__________________

2004 Black C5 Coupe - 6 speed
GHL Bullet 3.5" quad exhaust / Magnaflow X-pipe / Bilstein Sports / Hotchkis swaybars / Hurst shifter & **** / SSR GT3 wheels & BFG gForce KDW tires : Rear : 295-35-19 x 11 Front : 265-35-18 x 9.5 / Drilled & slotted rotors / Lowered on stock bolts / Frame savers & rocker rails / CAGS bypass / CLB / SS Inserts / Black Z06 screens / Blackouts / Black exhaust plate / Disabled DRLs
DirteeDave is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2007, 11:45 PM   #4
peter pan
Life Time NCM #2196
Support Corvetteforum!
 
peter pan's Avatar
 
Member Since: Sep 2004
Location: Converse TX
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by DirteeDave View Post
Thanks for the excellent writeup Patches. I'm going to be tackling this in the near future and these pics and instructions will be invaluable.
Awesome write up and something I have done on my drivers side
peter pan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2007, 11:51 PM   #5
thisMSGgood4me
CF Senior Member
 
Member Since: Feb 2005
Location: Houston TX
Default

Much appreciated writeup with all the detailed pics. Even I should be able to do that fix now when it happens to me, which it inevitably will.
thisMSGgood4me is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 12:40 AM   #6
jbondfl
CF Senior Member
St. Jude Donor '12-'13-'14
Support Corvetteforum!
 
jbondfl's Avatar
 
Member Since: Aug 2006
Location: Tampa Bay, Go BUCS!!!Go Rays!!!Go Lightning!!!
Default

Funny, it must happen in waves. I replaced my driver side headlight gear just two days ago.

Got mine from Rodney Dickman and you're right, they're exactly the same kit. Took about an hour to take it out, 45 minutes to repair, and about an hour to put it all back and test. Not all that bad as repairs go.

Glad to see yours went as well as mine. Photos are great, I just have trouble stopping m work, taking photos, and starting again. That trip to the fridge always distracts me somehow and I forget what I was working on,,,,,
jbondfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 12:51 AM   #7
Cozmo
CF Senior Member
CentralTX Events Coordinator
St. Jude Donor '03-'04-'05-'06-'07-'08-'09-'10-'11-'12-'13-'14
 
Cozmo's Avatar
 
Member Since: Aug 2003
Location: Austin Texas USA Hook 'em Horns!

Default

Patches,
another amazing thread. You have great attention to detail and amazing patience when posting these. When reading one of your "how to's" I feel like I can tackle any job.

I have posted a link to your shifter installation instructions countless times. I don't have a headlight gear problem but bookmarked this thread in case I do.

You are truly a great asset to the Corvette community.

Thank you
Cozmo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 12:54 AM   #8
Vetteman Jack
CF Senior Member
MO Events Coordinator
CI 5, 8 & 11 Veteran
St. Jude Donor '03-'04-'05-'06-'07-'08-'09-'10-'11-'12-'13-'14
NCM Sinkhole Donor
 
Vetteman Jack's Avatar
 
Member Since: Mar 2001
Location: Jefferson City, MO Currently Own: 2003 Milestone Edition. Previously Owned: '79, '79, '84, '89, '94, '95, '99 and '00

Default

Awesome writeup Patches. Going to keep this one on file for future reference.
Vetteman Jack is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 12:55 AM   #9
Choreo
CF Senior Member
Support Corvetteforum!
 
Choreo's Avatar
 
Member Since: May 2006
Location: Midland TX
Default

Great write-up as always. I have my two sets of Rodney Dickman Gears just been waiting for a free weekend.

BTW - Did you notice any additional motor noise after switching to metal gears?
Choreo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 01:14 AM   #10
wamara
CF Senior Member
Cruise-In II Veteran
 
wamara's Avatar
 
Member Since: Sep 2000
Location: ABQ NM
Default

Once again thanks for helping educate us all
wamara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 01:21 AM   #11
Cajun99
CF Senior Member
 
Cajun99's Avatar
 
Member Since: Aug 2001
Location: South Alabama
Default

Once again Patches...OUTSTANDING!!

So far so good, but if my lights start acting up this "keeper" Tech Tip will be my guide for the repair.
__________________

Arctic White '99 FRC - Several Mods
Cajun99 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 01:33 AM   #12
madmatt9471
CF Senior Member
Support Corvetteforum!
 
madmatt9471's Avatar
 
Member Since: May 2006
Location: Palmdale, Ca----- 734 RWHP & 585 RWTQ-----1/4 10.34 @ 135 MPH (New ET Eventually!)
Default

XLNT write up plus pictures!

Gets an A++++++ in my book! This is a keeper!

Thanks,Matt
__________________
madmatt9471 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 01:43 AM   #13
VRROOOM2
CF Senior Member
St. Jude Donor '06
 
VRROOOM2's Avatar
 
Member Since: Jul 2005
Location: Omaha Nebraska
Default

Nice job Ed!! Thanks for taking the time and putting forth the effort!!
VRROOOM2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 01:59 AM   #14
Kudzu
CF Senior Member
St. Jude Donor '04-'05-'06-'08-'09
 
Kudzu's Avatar
 
Member Since: Feb 1999
Location: Marietta GA
Default

Once again Patches shares his know how with us lesser mortals..LOL
I just know I will have to do this sooner or later and now I know how.
Thanks Ed
__________________

WOT, gas mileage sucks but the smile is priceless!

Classic Glass Corvette Club
National Corvette Museum Lifetime member #5178
Grand Sport Registry
Save the Wave!
Kudzu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 02:41 AM   #15
DeeGee
Tech Contributor
 
DeeGee's Avatar
 
Member Since: Dec 2003
Location: Horncastle Lincolnshire, England
Dave Gledhill David Gledhill
Default

Great write up Patches. Thanks for taking the time to put it together. I'll drop that one into the archive.

Thats one job that figures in my future. I had one motor gear replaced under warranty and since fitted the heavier T85 headlights. I have 2 gear kits from Rodney waiting to go in. The write up will come in really useful.

__________________
http://deegee-media.webnode.com/

2002 A4 Convertible, Mag Red II
Euro head and tail lights, Z06 screens, frame savers and rocker rails, Pioneer AVIC X1R nav/DVD player, EE catch can.


Tattershall Castle, England *** **** **** *** Las Vegas, NV




Jet Noise, the sound of freedom!
DeeGee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 02:59 AM   #16
Vette Stripes
CF Senior Member
St. Jude Donor '03-'04-'05-'06-'07-'08
 
Vette Stripes's Avatar
 
Member Since: Feb 2002
Location: DFW, TX www.vettestripes.com
Default

As usual
Just bookmark this page but hope you also put this on your website
Thanks so much!!!

-Mike
Vette Stripes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 09:12 AM   #17
mph1972
CF Senior Member
Cruise-In VIII Veteran
St. Jude Donor '07
Support Corvetteforum!
 
mph1972's Avatar
 
Member Since: Apr 2004
Location: Johnsonville SC
Send a message via Yahoo to mph1972
Default

You are the MAN! Great post, it will help a great deal of people out.
mph1972 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 09:22 AM   #18
jbondfl
CF Senior Member
St. Jude Donor '12-'13-'14
Support Corvetteforum!
 
jbondfl's Avatar
 
Member Since: Aug 2006
Location: Tampa Bay, Go BUCS!!!Go Rays!!!Go Lightning!!!
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Choreo View Post
Great write-up as always. I have my two sets of Rodney Dickman Gears just been waiting for a free weekend.

BTW - Did you notice any additional motor noise after switching to metal gears?
The new gears are as quiet as the old. Nothing to hear except the little bump whne the light gets to its full open/closed position.
jbondfl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 09:43 AM   #19
Cod
Bazinga!
St. Jude Donor '09
Support Corvetteforum!
 
Cod's Avatar
 
Member Since: Jul 2007
Location: E-Town TN
Send a message via MSN to Cod
Default

They should sticky your posts!

Nice write up!!
Cod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 09:43 AM   #20
kvozel
CF Senior Member
CI 3-4-5-6-7 & 9 Veteran
St. Jude Donor '08
 
kvozel's Avatar
 
Member Since: May 2000
Location: Centerville OH "If we weren't all crazy we would go insane"
Send a message via AIM to kvozel
Default

As usual, a great documentary
kvozel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2007, 09:43 AM
 
Go Back   Corvette Forum > C5 Corvettes, 1997 - 2004 > C5 General
Reload this Page Headlight gear fix (highly pictorialized)
 
 
 
Reply

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
ACA HID Install - Lotsa Pics Patches C5 General 196 04-21-2014 01:57 AM
FS - C5 ARH headers, Jet-Hot w/ cats Patches Southern California 1 12-22-2013 02:26 AM
FS - C5 ARH headers, Jet-Hot w/ cats Patches C5 Parts for Sale/Wanted 4 12-22-2013 02:01 AM
More new leather for Mrs. Patches Patches C5 General 56 09-30-2012 01:15 AM
NXT STEP Performance catback arrived Patches C5 General 61 02-01-2009 02:18 AM


Tags
bushings, c4, c5, corvette, fix, gear, gears, headlamp, headlight, headlights, linkage, lubrication, motor, repair, replacement


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Click for Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 08:21 AM.


Emails & Password Backup