Jonny's polished taillights project by JonnyPhenomenon

By diyauto
( 1 )

Jonny's polished taillights project

Compliments of JonnyPhenomenon @


as requested, here is the poroject thread for my polished taillights.

Got a set of taillights for a song off ebay. they were pretty scrubby, 

but in great shape. 

I got started right away on polishing them. first thing to do is to sand off all the ridges.

cant go too fast, or you will melt the plastic. so I took a break.  

OK, so I took too many breaks. got the kegerator retrofitted for my extra keg of bud light. and had some friends show up. 

delicate sanding work should be done sober, so I put the lights away and went back to drinking.


more pics to follow soon.

I started with 120 since that is the coarsest I had. but a friend of mine just brought me some 80 grit and I am going to use that tonight.

the intention is to get the majority of the ridges down with coarse grit, then get the last with a finer grit. so I wont have to do too much more sanding just to clean up the gashes I left with the heavier paper.

ive got paper all the way up to 2000. and then I have polishing compound that will make this look like glass.

Im not sure if I will smoke tint these tho. I really just like the glossy smooth look.

but we shall see.

making progress 


it took a couple hours of sanding with the sander I would say. altho I was trying to do it with 150 grit paper.

those ridges are TALL. that is a lot of material to remove. almost make more sense to just polish them up without griding them down.

regardless, it went a LOT faster when I picked up some 80 grit paper. I considered picking up some 40 grit, but that seemed a bit too aggressive. 

once I got all the ridges down with the 80, I went to work hand sanding with 150, then 320, then 2000, and then the polishing compound. 

I got a small crack in the reverse lense tho. I dont know if it was there already or if I cracked it with to much force. its not bad tho. 

I guess that it will encourage me to smoke tint them after all..

tomorrow I get to work on the second one.

here is another pic for your enjoyment.

I started polishing the right side. the two red quares on the left have no polish, and the one on the right has had a cursory application.

when these are done, they look like glass 

one down. I used 3m "perfect-it" handglaze


got the second one sanded down. used 40 grit on this one to get the ridges off. then 80, 120, 150, 320, 1000, 2000 and the polishing goop.

the first one came out great except for the one crack in the reverse lens, but the second one looks like it had a lot more sun/age damage to it to begin with, and you simply can not sand out cracks. 

its got a lot of "crazing" (as some people have called it) thoough it, 

basically it means that I will have to smoke them after all. I was really hoping to avoid that, I dont really like the smoked look. >.<