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Tinting/colouring interior lights in Model S

BrainCandy

Member
Jul 19, 2017
155
216
Milton, ON
Hey guys. Has anyone ever tried tinting their interior lights a different colour? I'm not a fan of the super bright orange dome lights, especially when paired with the cool ambient and Abstract Ocean footwell lights, but unfortunately no one seems to sell different coloured LED bulbs for the footwell or dome lights. So I'm looking at options for tinting the existing bulbs.

I'm thinking of tinting my dome lights to a darker and cooler daylight colour temperature, or perhaps slightly blue, and turning the bright footwell lights a deep blue. I may also tint the ambient lights to a cooler colour temperature as well, though they may end up too dim. I can do this with sheets photographic colour-correction gels (like celophane) but this wouldn't be too elegant since I'll have to tape or glue them to the lights. This might be fine for the footwells and ambient lights since they're hidden, but the dome lights will be a challenge since they're in plain sight and are concave (and pressable).

Ideally, I'd like to coat the bulbs with some sort of removable paint or thin rubbery coating for a cleaner look. Does anyone know what the light transmission property is like for plasti dip? I know they make a "smoke" colour for this purpose but I wonder if I could use a thin coat of the blue colour for the effect I want. Or maybe some sort of non-permanent paint?

If not, I might just go ahead with the colour-correction gel option. I'd probably get 20x24" sheets of the following:

- Rosco 3220 Double Blue (10% light transmission for Abstract Ocean footwell lights): Rosco # 3220 Double Blue CTB Color Conversion Gel 101032202024
- Rosco 3202 Full Blue (36% light transmission, for dome lights): Rosco # 3202 Full Blue CTB Color Conversion Gel Filter RS320211
- Rosco 3204 1/2 Blue (52% light transmission, for ambient lighting): Rosco # 3204 1/2 Blue CTB Color Conversion Gel Filter RS320411

I have a sample pack of these gels, as well as many other colours (green, red, orange, etc.) if anyone is interested in seeing what other colours look like when applied to the lights.

Here are some shots I took with a few of my sample gels. They were all taken with the exact same exposure and white balance for direct comparison:

Covering the Abstract Ocean footwell light with blue gels:
Blue-footwell-triptych.jpg


Covering the dome light with blue gels:
Dome-light-gel-quad.jpg


For something a bit different, I also tried a couple of red gels for the footwells but I think they were both a bit too dark. There's also a "scarlet" gel with 20% light transmission which may work better, but I didn't try it. Either way, you'll definitely want the brighter Abstract Ocean bulbs if you want the coloured light to be visible.
Red-footwell-triptych.jpg



Let me know what you think and if you have any thoughts on other options.

Thanks,

Michael
 

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BrainCandy

Member
Jul 19, 2017
155
216
Milton, ON
Thanks. I think I'm going to go with the full or double blue gel for the footwells and the full blue gel for the overhead dome lights. I just need to figure out how I'm going to stick the gels onto the dome lights. I hope Elon gives us more control over the ambient lighting in a future update like he promised - I'd like to keep the footwell lights on while driving.
 

BrainCandy

Member
Jul 19, 2017
155
216
Milton, ON
Thanks Bruce - @bmah. I’ll have to get in touch with him to see if that could be an option. I’d much rather go that route, especially if the colour and brightness could be adjustable without resorting to running all sorts of wires everywhere like I’ve seen with those LED strip lighting systems. Hopefully he’ll have a solution for the dome lights as well.

@Shiro I’m going to play with that as well but I’m afraid that tinting those lights would make them too dim since they’re not very bright to begin with.
 

BrainCandy

Member
Jul 19, 2017
155
216
Milton, ON
Because it's fun to modify our dream cars to make them unique and looking just the way we want. I personally think the blue footwell lights look pretty cool and futuristic, especially with the sport pedals and white interior. Besides, it's not exactly a large expenditure at $7 per sheet of blue gel.
 

BrainCandy

Member
Jul 19, 2017
155
216
Milton, ON
@brianp6621 Unfortunately, I haven't discovered an elegant solution to the dome lights yet. Having the lenses concave makes any sort of film problematic, especially since the lights are activated by pressing on the middle, and I'm not sure how to stick film on there that will handle temperature swings but still have the option of removing them if desired. I'd love to find some sort of rubberized coating like Plasti Dip but the only semi-transparent Plasti Dip I've seen is a "smoke" colour, not blue, and I imagine the blue Plasti Dip would be rather opaque and would make the light a dark blue, rather than cool white. Mind you, that would still be preferable to the overly bright orange lights, IMO. I wish we could just swap out the orange LED (or are they tungsten?) bulbs, but I don't want to be the first guinea pig who tries to take the assembly apart. It was really easy to do in my last car, but since no one seems to have done it so far in the Model S, I'm guessing it's a more difficult job.
 

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