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Rover SD1, Finally Fog Lights!

Woo hoo, It’s finally time to fill the big gaps in the front of the Rover.

Wow its a double post day today! I haven’t spent much time working on the Rover recently, but don’t worry, it’s still here and still loved

I have been trying to source a set of good fog lights for the SD1 since I got the car. I got a pair from the previous owner, originally from the car, but both had damaged lenses (one with a hole in it, and the other was properly smashed). The reflectors were also a bit average. One light had been “modified” somewhat too, so that was no good. Finding any, let alone a good pair, was damn near impossible locally but fitting them to the car was fairly important to me.

Without the fog lights I was left with just a pair of big gaping holes in the front

I finally sourced one good pair of fog lights…. in the motherland, Britain. Thankfully my lovely wife just happened to be in Britain last month for work, so I put two and two together, and got the lights shipped to her and she brought them back in her very overfull luggage. They may or may not have also been the reason her bags were searched by customs…. but we aren’t sure on that

They were used lights (I had the option of New Old Stock/NOS ones too, but they were a lot more expensive and harder to justify), and not perfect. One had a very bad reflector. The reflector is made of steel with some super thin reflective coating on it, and over 30+ years the quality British steel has suffered badly.

One of the lights that came with the car has a better, but still rusty, reflector. I carefully applied rust converter to the worst areas, but I didn’t want to risk further damage to the reflective coating. This was the reflector I chose to use.

So the aim of the game was to take 4 average light units, and make two good units. The replacement lights had lenses fitted; one good and one broken, but the seller included a perfect spare NOS lens.

To get the reflector units apart, and remove the lenses, there are small clips holding the stainless surround to the reflector.

They’re easy to remove, either lever them out, or preferably, push the long leg down and unhook from the surround.

With the clips out the whole lot just comes apart. I replaced the lenses and reflectors and built a good pair.

Before fitting the lights I had to actually dig out the wiring for them on the car. I had seen the LH side wires in the past, sitting up on the under tray

But the RH side ones were nowhere to be found. I did some digging, after removing some screws on the under tray I found the wires jammed up between the under tray and the front panel.

I plugged a spare bulb holder into the wires and tested that it actually worked

Success. The light works, but the switch needs rebuilding (like the rear fog switch it doesn’t latch). Even the dash light works

The housings are easy to get into place. They have a push-pin on each side and an adjustment screw on the top.

You hook one pin in, and using a small blade you push the other pin in whilst slipping the housing into place. Screw the adjuster screw in, and BAM, done.

Rinse and repeat on the other side

Plug the bulb in, and then the reflector housing pushes into place until it clicks in.

Now to fix that switch. Off comes the dash top, and then the button pushes out the front

It’s a prick to get at the wiring for the switch though. It’s the big red plug that needs two hands to undo

Off comes the cap

Pull off the cover and see why the switch doesn’t latch. The latching pin has come adrift thanks to the useless little plastic tab breaking off.

Same as with the rear one, I used a small screwdriver heated up with a torch to melt the plastic over and secure the pin into place.

Whilst there I also fully stripped and cleaned the contacts, just so I didn’t have to do it again later. They were pretty corroded.

Once reassembled…. we have light!

And then LIGHTS!

I still need to align the lights, and also replace the bulbs with a pair that match. I’m happy already though, looks so much better with the lights in place.

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