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  • EuroDat

    280Z Front turn signal refresh.

    My 280Z was due for a roadworthy inspection so I was checking the lights and noticed the front indicators were not very bright. I never paid much attention to them before because I was planning to switch to 240Z lights when the 240z bumper and air dam were fitted. I still have not decided on the type of air dam yet so these turn signals will be around for a while. After dismantling them it was clear why they didn’t shine very bright.

    1. The chrome reflector was so badly corroded. The chrome layer was falling of the metal plate and the metal plate was rusted.

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    2. The lens was covered in red and black over spray from the PO paint job.

    Considering the effort required I’m impressed with the results and decided to show them here. I didn’t think it rated a technical article so I posted it in the electrical section. Here are some step by step photos of the lenses.


    I dismantled the lens and cleaned it with paint stripper. The paint stripper from Rustoleum (Green Nr 1) is mild and does not attack the plastic used in the turn signals. I let it work for about 10 minutes and had to repeat it twice to get all the paint off.


    They clean up really well considering there age.

    The reflector section was a different story. The chrome layer was past any restoration attempts. I ended up scrapping all the chrome off and sanding the metal back smooth and priming it. I coated it with aluminium tape to substitute for chrome. Doesn’t look all that crash hot on the photos. The reflection shows every imperfection. it would be better in thin polished stainless steel, but I didn’t have the time and these won't be permanent.


    The orange lenses came up nice after sanding with 240, then 800 and finishing with 1200 grit emery paper and being carefull not to sand all the text away. After sanding I buffed them with 2-cut polish. The stuff used to polished badly faded paint.

    This is the final result.



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    Modeller's chrome foil applique should produce a better result than aluminum/aluminium tape.  It has more reflectivity and better conformity.  Available in sheet that measures about 8" x 5", so -- with care -- it should be possible to lay it down as a single piece to cover the full surface of the reflector.  Trim the edges and bulb hole afterwards.  Any corrosion on the reflector's metal surface will need to fully removed and treated (phosphoric acid) before the foil is laid down.

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