Removing a Miller Headlamp glass

Restoration Man

Forum User
VOC Member
Hi folks,
I am trying to restore the original 7" Miller head light unit on my 1948 Rapide. The reflector needs to be re-silvered, so obviously I need to remove the glass!...However a close look at the reflector construction shows that the glass is being held in place at its outer edge, by the circumferal lip / edge of the reflector. This has been achieved by the reflectors outer edge having been being 'spun over' the glass by about 1/8" !....The only solution that I can think of is to take my Dremel and cut away this 'spun over' edge, to safely remove the glass?...Any one else ever come across this issue before and if so, how did you remove the glass?

Thanks in anticipation for you replies, Restoration Man
 

Marcus Bowden

VOC Hon. Overseas Representative
VOC Member
A pointed round instrument and work it into the top edge of the reflector and tease the thin brass open / outwards until it has a bigger diameter than the glass, there is normally a cork gasket between glass and reflector but refitting I just use a bead of silicon and don't try teasing the brass back, the silicon will hold it.
bananaman
 

timetraveller

Well Known and Active Forum User
VOC Member
And if you do use silicon make sure that it is the translucent one. My experience of using it on boats in the Med is that any pigmented one only lasts about a year or two before it becomes less 'stretchy' whereas the clear/translucent one will still stretch to double its length without breaking after many(8+) years.
 

derek

Well Known and Active Forum User
VOC Member
It was my opinion that the original units came apart separately, all of my early bikes did. Surely when the reflector is sealed over the glass, this is a sealed beam unit??
 

Peter Holmes

Well Known and Active Forum User
VOC Member
It was my opinion that the original units came apart separately, all of my early bikes did. Surely when the reflector is sealed over the glass, this is a sealed beam unit??
I agree, I think some of the incorrectly fitted later Miller/Velocette 7inch types had sealed beam units, mine did when purchased in 1965, now changed for an 8 inch Miller shell and convex glass working with an 8 inch BMW H4 reflector with a 65w headlight, great for punishing those oncoming drivers that do not dip their lights.
 

BigEd

Well Known and Active Forum User
VOC Member
VOC Forum Moderator
My '48 "B" Rapide build sheet shows that it was originally fitted with a 7" headlamp. It doesn't indicate the make. It was sent to Argentina so I assume that size was specified for that market.
 

Restoration Man

Forum User
VOC Member
Many thanks for all the replies...1) The 7" Dia I referred to was the headlamp shell Dia.... yes I know the actual glass lens & reflector are approx. 6 1/2" dia..... 2) I assumed it was an original Miller item that could be taken apart, because I bought the bike in the late 60's and also the rim & glass were marked Miller! ...should know not to assume anything when working on a Vincent!......3) Finally I managed to tease the spun edge of the reflector away from the glass to find not a cork gasket but a rather perished white rubber gasket, so a sealed beam unit as some of you suggested.....Again thanks to everyone for their comments.... Restoration Man
 
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