This is our reproduction of the widely used Trail-Lite No.99 (or No.98) lens, originally made by Theodore Bargman.
The lens is approximately 6.5" in diameter and has a "tiered wedding cake" profile. It is surface mounted and held to the base by three machine screws (included). Our silicone rubber gaskets are a gray color so they are not as noticable through the lens the way a black gasket would be.
This is the lens, gasket and screws only. Because our lenses are the same dimensions as the original lenses, they fit the original backplate and our reproduction stainless steel backplate assemblies. Screws are designed to thread into most original backplates, but some original backplates did not have threaded receivers for the screws. The screws on those models went straight into the trailer siding. If that is how your old backplate is configured, you may need to pick up some sheet metal style screws at the hardware store.
These lenses were used on trailers made by Airstream, Streamline, Forester, King, Aljoa, Shasta, Serro Scotty, Santa Fe and others (even the Ultra Van) starting in the late 1950s and continuing through the 1960s. Airstream used them on most trailers from 1958 to 1967, but some Airstreams used other lenses.
There are many plastics available for the manufacture of automotive lenses. We chose to make our lenses from acrylic because it is highly resistant to UV damage. While we use polycarbonate on many of our projects, we believe it is an inferior product for lenses. Over time, polycarbonate can be damaged by ultraviolet exposure from the sun. To seal and protect the polycarbonate, a protective outer coating must be applied during manufacture. Over time, this coating breaks down, which causes cloudiness. That's not a big deal unless your application requires optical clarity. Taillights do require clarity for maximum safety. Acrylic is naturally UV resistant and that's why we like it. We warranty our acrylic lenses against sun damage for as long as you own your trailer.
NOTE: Like the originals, our lenses can be cracked if the mounting screws are overtightened. Exercise care with your originals and with these reproductions when mounting. Lock washers can help hold screws secure without over-tightening. We recommend using stainless #6-32 x 3/4" pan head screws (we include them).
PLEASE NOTE: In the 1960s and 1970s, trailer manufacturers used at least 5 different styles of large round taillights that all resemble each other. In addition to this Bargman No. 99 or 98, there was a Bargman No. 86, an Auto-Lamp 575, Triangle 19-00, and a Reflect-O-Lite 110-150.
The Bargman No.99 is 6-1/2" diameter and mounts with 3 screws. The Bargman No. 86 and Reflect-O-Lite 110-150 are 7" diameter and mount with 3 screws. The Auto-Lamp 575 and Triangle 19-00 are 7" and mount with 4 screws. The lenses are not interchangeable, so be sure you need these and not the others.
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