Jump to content

'38 Olds Headlight Interchange


Recommended Posts

I recently acquired a 1938 Olds F-Series convertible that has been converted to sealed beam headlights.

In hoping to undo the conversion, I've managed to find a set of lenses that are correct for the Olds.  These came in a batch of headlight parts that are mostly '39 Cadillac.  I'm unsure which of these Cadillac parts might work on the Olds.

The Cadillac buckets and aiming mechanisms clearly have a right side/left side orientation and look as though they'll fit into the Olds without difficulty.  

However, the reflectors are a puzzle.  Both the headlight and parking light bulbs are offset slightly to one side of the reflector, and it's the same sided offset in both reflectors.  I would think that the reflectors would be mirror images of each other if they were left & right sided, so I can't quite figure out what I'm dealing with.  Why the offset?  Did the '39 Cadillac have left/right sided headlight reflectors?

FWIW, the '38 Olds master parts book lists only one headlight reflector for both sides of the F and L series of cars- part #922315.

I'd be grateful if anyone can shed any light into whether these '39 Cadillac reflectors with their matching bulb offsets would be appropriate for a '38 Olds, and if not, what other headlight parts of the era might properly interchange.

Buying this car was a big leap out of my early-60's comfort zone.  Any advice or assistance would be much appreciated!

 

IMG_4152.JPG

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

This is a guess. But most headlights were aimed to go slightly to the right and I wonder if this is the reason they are the same. I would say they are correct  Also if they are not correct for your car I would be interested in the reflectors. I have a 39 Cadillac /LaSalle that was converted also.

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

On 11/19/2019 at 8:53 PM, Starfire61 said:

However, the reflectors are a puzzle.  Both the headlight and parking light bulbs are offset slightly to one side of the reflector, and it's the same sided offset in both reflectors.  I would think that the reflectors would be mirror images of each other if they were left & right sided, so I can't quite figure out what I'm dealing with.  Why the offset?  

 

Look at old threads about "Guide Multibeam", because it sounds like that is what you might have. They have a vertical cutoff on the side, and shine across each other (crosseyed). The passenger side dips when meeting oncoming traffic. Does your headlight switch have four positions? I don't recall if both reflectors are the same.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks very much for the suggestion to check out the Multibeam threads.  The information is extremely helpful.  That is indeed the system that was originally on the car- I had no idea it was so precise.  

Still trying to nail-down whether I have the correct reflectors, but you've definitely given me some direction.  Thanks again!

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...