Head- and foglight (82)

Head light

 Partly restored Bosch headlights for a Mercedes-Benz Ponton model 219 -57

Partly restored Bosch headlights

The head lights were, as many other parts on my car since my father cared for it, in good shape. I still decided to re-chrome all chrome parts and repaint and/or re-plate the other parts. Retaining springs, sealing rings for the glass as well as parts necessary for the light adjustments were bought new. The reflector I diagnose as being enough bright as they are, not needing restoration.

  • Complete, unrestored Mercedes Bosch headlight unit
  • Bosch headlight sealing ring
  • Bosch headlight sealing ring
  • Reflector of Bosch headlight
  • Bosch ornamental ring for Mercedes Ponton before re-chroming
  • Bosch ornamental ring for Mercedes Ponton before re-chroming, rear

The supporting ring, the black and silver painted ring that the headlight is sitting in, was a candidate for repaint. I didn’t want to destroy the original markings on top of it, and don’t have the means to re-create them yet, so I covered them up instead. After that it was just a matter of sandblasting the ring and then paint it in silver and semi-gloss black. The adjustment ring, as I call it, had to be sandblasted, plated and repainted. The adjustment screws, with their locking mechanism, were removed and replaced. The purpose of the locking mechanism is to hold a small spring tight enough towards the black adjustment ring (i.e. the black, flat ring) so that the adjustment screws are not moving while driving, i.e. changing the horizontal or vertical adjustment of the headlight.

  • Unrestored Mercedes Bosch headlight supporting and adjustment ring and glass
  • Unrestored Mercedes Bosch headlight adjustment ring and glass
  • Unrestored Bosch supporting ring and glass
  • Bosch Ponton head light supporting ring
  • Bosch Ponton head light adjustment ring, front
  • Bosch Ponton head light adjustment ring, rear
  • Detail of Ponton addjustment screw with spring on Bosch headlight

Below you can see the sandblasted, and then plated, adjustment rings as well as a box with ornamental rings and light pots, cleaned by the chrome shop and awaiting polish. I did what I could here but I let the chrome shop do the final polishing.

  • Bosch headlight adjustment ring sandblasted
  • Bosch adjustment ring plated
  • Head and fog light of to chroming

In the next gallery you can first see some of the new items for the light adjustment as well as the painted supporting ring. I also deliver some pictures of rechromed ornamental ring for the Bosch headlights as well as the fastening screws.

  • New adjustment screw for Mercedes Bosch headlight
  • Painted Bosch supporting rings
  • Bosch Ponton headlight ornamental ring chromed
  • Bosch Mercedes headlight ornamental ring chromed
  • Bosch headlight MB219 ornamental ring chromed
  • Screws for Bosch  Mercedes ornamental ring chromed

All parts ready for assembly can be seen in the first picture. Almost all… For the Bosch head lights you use 8 retaining springs per side (Hella uses four per side and they are probably different in their shape) something I realized after this picture was taken. More about that later. In the second picture below you can see the new ”nuts”, and their rubber support, for the horizontal and vertical adjustment screws. The third and fourth picture show the adjustments screws. As you can see in one of the galleries above the original locking mechanism had to be removed. Unfortunately, the new locking mechanism consists of two counter-tightened nuts per screw. I say “unfortunately” since the two nuts together, get too thick and are in the way during the later assembly of the lights in the fender. The adjustment and ornamental rings where rust protected on the backside. The sealing ring around the glass goes with the grooves forward, towards the adjustment ring.

  • Bosch headlight for MB Ponton ready for assembly, 4 retining springs too few
  • Adjustment nuts and rubber support in place
  • Adjustment screws with their locking mechanism
  • Adjustment screws with their locking mechanism, note spring underneath
  • Adjustment ring rust protected
  • More rust protection
  • Rubber profile for Bosch glass in Mercedes 180 190 219 220
  • Glass with rubber ring laid in place in supporting ring
  • Adjustment ring in place on glass

It took a while to understand how the retaining springs were to be assembled. The springs are very hard and supposed to go in between the edge of the adjustment ring and a groove in the supporting ring. The spare parts list said 8 per side but it was impossible, the springs flew all over the place or the two rings separated. I asked around on my forums and most said they had had no problems. After some "digging" it turned out that there were mostly two reasons behind that; either they used fewer springs than 8 or they used old springs. With the new springs I had to have something that hold the whole package together while inserting them. That fixture is what you see in the second picture. If you use too few, or old, springs you run the risk that the glass, supporting ring and reflector with lamp is not held together hard enough. If someone leans towards the lamp it risks being pressed into fender. One of the respondents had actually experience of just that. Also stories of headlights that had fell into the fender while driving was told. Now I and they know the reason behind that.

With the fixture it got easier, only almost impossible to insert the springs. The springs need to cross each other in order to sit tight, you also need to adjust their place so that they don’t block the lower screw hole or come in contact with the adjustment screws. It takes some time to move them back- and forward until everything is in place.

  • On Bosch Ponton headlights there are 8 retaining springs per side
  • In order to simplify spring insertion a simple fixture was created
  • Retaining springs inserted on Bosch Mercedes headlight
  • Retaining springs inserted on Bosch Mercedes headlight
  • Retaining springs inserted on Bosch Mercedes headlight but adjustment still needed
  • Bosch Ponton headlight assembled and with adjustment ring in place
  • Bosch ornamental ring in place on MB headlight


 Restored Bosch foglights for a Mercedes-Benz Ponton model 219 -57

Restored Bosch foglights

I went for the same procedure with the fog lights as with the head lights. The car was actually equipped with Marshall fog lights from the beginning. Or rather, my father bought them on the aftermarket after the car was delivered to him. They look something like the ones in the gallery below. To me they didn’t look that good on the car, too large diameter. Hence, I decided to go for the “standard”, smaller Hella/Bosch fog light. I got this pair as part of a repayment of a debt.

  • Marchal fog lights
  • Rear of Hella reflector
  • Front of Hella reflector
  • Hella fog light sealing ring around and under glass

They were in a decent shape as well but as usual I took them apart and had everything cleaned, re-chromed, re-plated and fixed up. As you can see below they were converted to H4 lamp socket. Actually, the foglights are slightly modified and have new reflectors from a tractor (unknown which) and H4 lamp feet coming from the /8 Mercedes for year 1973 and younger.

  • Disassembled Ponton Hella fog light socket
  • Front side of Hella Mercedes Ponton cover ring snapp fitting before re-chroming and re-plating
  • Rear side of Hella Mercedes Ponton cover ring snapp fitting before re-chroming and re-plating
  • Lampholder, H4, not original for Ponton Hella fog ligth

Before re-chroming I drilled out all riveted parts. The base of the fog light is not chromed. Since I don’t have good enough cleaning equipment, I decided to polish the base and then have it “white cadmium”, hoping that it’s luster will go down rather quickly. Grinding them would not be an option since that would be visible after the plating.

  • Base rivets of Hella MB219 fog light being drilled out
  • Plated, restored parts of a Mercedes Ponton Hella fog light, long retaining springs for headlights

Step-by-step they will reach their restored, final look. Below the re-chromed pot and ornamental rings.

  • Ponton Hella fog light pots chromed
  • Benz Ponton Hella fog light cover ring chromed
  • Benz Ponton Hella fog light cover ring chromed

Having all parts in place, the assembly could start. First the light pot was rust protected with a thick Tectyl where the base was to sit. After hat the base was greased and then put in place together with the vertical screw and its holder. Everything was riveted with 5 mm DIN 660 aluminum rivets. Then the small bracket that holds the ornamental ring in place was riveted with 4 mm DIN 660 aluminum rivets.

Next step was to fixate lamp with sealing ring into the chromed ornamental ring with the help of 5 retaining springs. Before the assembly I altered the lamp feet. As you can see in the pictures above the lamp feet originally had their wires soldered. I preferred to have the electrical wires coming from the main cable harness to be easily pressed into, and also removed from, the contacts instead. So the old contacts were drilled out and replaced with suitable contacts which were riveted with DIN 660 aluminum rivets. Then it was just to mount the correct base plate, washers, rubber sealing etc and I was done. I’m very pleased with the result.

  • All parts for Bosch Ponton foglight ready for assembly
  • Foglight pot rust protected
  • Bosch MB 219 foglight base greased
  • Foglight base and screw, riveted in pot
  • Foglight base and screw, riveted in pot
  • Bracket riveted into foglight's chromed ornamental ring, rear
  • Bracket riveted into foglight's chromed ornamental ring, front
  • Glass and reflector in ornamental ring
  • Altered lampholder for foglight
  • Completely restored and assembled Bosch Ponton foglight

Rotary switch

This has a very short write up under the "Instruments and switches" (group 54) where I decided to collect all instrument panel stuff.