center brake light

Mopar Body and Trim

  1. autopar3000

    autopar3000 Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone here fitted their car with a center brake light? The thought has been rattling around in my head for years, but it came to the forefront today when a woman driving one of those rectangular Benz suv's almost smashed into the back of me.

    If you have a center brake light on your vintage A body then let's see a picture!
     
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    • zkx14

      zkx14 Duster De-ruster

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      :happy1:
      Don't have one, but meant to look into it. Thanks for the reminder. I put headliner board in recently, but none of the other interior, so could still do it.
       
    • dibbons

      dibbons Well-Known Member

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      Perhaps a small strip of red LED lights might be the easiest and most effective.
       
    • autopar3000

      autopar3000 Well-Known Member

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      I was thinking something like that, but I would prefer to have a more OE look. Like a low profile light that sits on the package tray.

      A friend suggested I get a go-wing and integrate a strip of LEDs along the underside of it. Great idea, but I really don't like the go-wing.
       
    • zkx14

      zkx14 Duster De-ruster

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      I agree with no led. I don't care if its all OE, but want it to look like it could have been. Mine is a 75, i want it to look like it might have in 1980. slightly used, well maintained maybe a couple parts store mods...
       
    • RedFish

      RedFish FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      OK I put one in our first 67 notchback fish many years ago. Used a GM type fixture and cut its base into 3 pieces modifying it to hug the rubber flange close as possible to the glass. This is a must to prevent glare on the glass obstructing view. Very same done in the red 67 notch I drive today. There is a easier better way.
      Slantsixdan has posted links to retail fixtures that adjust to fit various applications.
      Now about the wiring... When adding a 3rd brake lamp to vehicles that use a single bulb ( 1157 ) for both brake and turn, a logic module in the wiring prevents the brake lamp from blinking with the turn signals. Those logic modules never lived more that a couple of years for me. I found it much better to just tap the white wire between brake lamp switch and steering column, and route a white wire the full length of the car along the original harness and into the added lamp. No logic module required.
      Also note, Where vehicle safety inspections are required even this added lamp must work to pass inspection.
       
    • Bad Sport

      Bad Sport HALF A BUBBLE OFF Staff Member FABO Gold Member

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    • zkx14

      zkx14 Duster De-ruster

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      I just looked quick on ebay. There are a couple for slanted window. Not sure if they just stick on window or what, will have to look more at details. I definitly don't need a red glare coming back at me from the glass. I guess most are led now, but ok if its a tight pattern. Just dont want a string of Christmas lights on back of my car...
       
    • abodyjoe

      abodyjoe Well-Known Member

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      Look in street rod Catalogs. A lot of those guys run them.
       
    • krazykuda

      krazykuda Well-Known Member FABO Gold Member How-To Section Editor

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      I had an old 68 Barracuda fastback that was rear-ended at least 3 times... I think part of it was how small the red surface area of the rear tail lights was (68 just had the small centers lit in red)...


      It may help to get more red lights back there to prevent getting slammed up the @ss...


      However that Barracuda held up very well, and just had minor dents on the rear valence, and has bent hoods of the car that hit it into a "v" shape...

      I once took a 90 MPH + hit from the rear in a 67 Fastback and walked away with severe whiplash, and the car was repairable... The guy that hit me was totalled...
       
    • 72bluNblu

      72bluNblu FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      A 2002-2007 Ford Taurus has a pretty nice set up. It's LED, but it lights the entire bar solid. They're easy to find in the local yards too.

      The only "problem" I've found is that they're a little too low profile, they need about a 1/2" block to sit on to be even with the bottom of the rear window because of the way the rear window seal works.

      It's one of the many things on my "to do" list on my Duster. I have the lights I just need to decide how to raise them up a little.

      $(KGrHqV,!qcFC53yMgzUBQ9)z+dFbQ--60_57.jpg
       
      Last edited: Jun 10, 2016
    • Darter6

      Darter6 Well-Known Member

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      Harley aftermarket red turn signal mounted to the package tray, wired into the brake light switch.Easy to mount, bright light,chrome housing looks like something that would have been in the 60's & 70's.
       
    • famous bob

      famous bob mopar misfit

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      since my exhaust is too big to run to the back, I installed small 1 1/4" x 4" lights in my rear valance exhaust cut outs. looks fairly decent, adds a lot of light when brakes are used.
       
    • zkx14

      zkx14 Duster De-ruster

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      Got this Hella light from Slant Six Dan, (also got headlamp relay kit ). Daniel Stern Lighting Consultancy and Supply
      It is Led, but not a string/row of them. Still need to wire it to the switch, but I did power it up(lights up red) and it looked good. Took the pick from inside, because in bright sun I could barely see it from outside when not on.

      2015-11-11 17_30_53.jpg

      2015-11-11 17_36_57.jpg
       
      Last edited: Jun 11, 2016
    • Logan

      Logan Well-Known Member

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      I used the assembly from a '92 ford Tempo (other years are the same). Mounts on the package tray with a little trimming. Has two bulbs. Connect to LH and RH stop lights. Looks factory.
       
    • TrailBeast

      TrailBeast AKA Mopars4us on Youtube

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      I am waiting for photo electric paint so the entire car gets brighter red when the brakes are applied. :D
       
    • slantsixdan

      slantsixdan =..=

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      Whether new or used, buy a good one, not cheap junk, and hook it up right so it doesn't flash with the turn signals (or any other time -- 3rd brake light flasher/blinker/pulse devices are available but extremely unwise to install). Be real careful if you buy used; the central brake light has to be mounted so it projects light in a level, straight rearward direction, no matter the angle of the backglass, and you also need to seal it to the backglass so it doesn't cause distracting red glow inside the car (rearview mirror) every time you hit the brakes.

      See http://www.allpar.com/reviews/other/LED-third-brake-light.html for an example install on a Valiant.
       
    • Logan

      Logan Well-Known Member

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      Dan "...hook it up right so it doesn't flash with the turn signals..."

      Making sure someone knows you're turning is important too, isn't it?
       
    • 67Dart273

      67Dart273 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      I'm open to suggestions, if you have any ideas, LOL
       
    • jimmyray

      jimmyray Well-Known Member

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    • slantsixdan

      slantsixdan =..=

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      Yes, that's what the car's turn signals are for. A flashing (blinking, "pulsing", strobing) central brake light doesn't indicate turning or anything else, it just worsens the speed and accuracy of the reaction of the driver behind you when you step on the brake. That's the opposite of what you want to accomplish.
       
    • zkx14

      zkx14 Duster De-ruster

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      I saw center brake lights that also function as turn signals when deciding what to add to my Duster. I don't care for the idea, not even sure if it's legal to use.
      With the regular one that is just suposed to light ( no blinky), you need to run the wire back to the brake pedal. If you just tap in to the tail circuit it will flash with the turn signals.
       
    • slantsixdan

      slantsixdan =..=

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      Good thinking; it's not.

      Yup! The cheap and nasty retrofit units that flooded the market in the '80s had so-called "logic modules" that were supposed to allow for E-Z hookup all at the back of the car. Those modules failed quicklike. Running a wire to the stop light switch is the right way to do it. Sample installation of a central stop light on a Valiant is here.
       
    • RedFish

      RedFish FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      PLEASE NOTE, If/when altering brake lamp wiring for any reason, Do it properly. Twist on household wire nuts are not the way. The last condition you would want to create is no brake lamps at all.
       
    • slantsixdan

      slantsixdan =..=

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      Big +1 on that. And don't use those fold-and-crunch type (Scotchlock) wire taps, either. I like Posi-Taps. Also, another reason to use an LED type unit is that an incandescent bulb will increase the current load on the wiring upstream of the brake light switch by about 50%. You probably won't have a fire, but the voltage drop will make all three brake lights slower and dimmer (good reason to use these specific LEDs instead of the original left and right brake light bulbs, but that means you also have to swap in this turn signal flasher -- more info here)
       
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