Anyone have a solution for the poor illumination on the OEM clock and Tach - Page 2 - JeepForum.com
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post #16 of 34 Old 09-15-2020, 07:43 AM
jay-h
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Originally Posted by 98muddyjeep View Post
you could try finding led lights also much brighter with little heat, https://lamptech.com/lamp-1816-led-e...20environments.
I got LED lights, simple and worked fine. On the small gage panel I got prewired strings of mini lights from Pepboys (no corroded sockets to worry about)


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post #17 of 34 Old 09-15-2020, 11:05 AM Thread Starter
John Strenk
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I'm ordering a set of these surface mount LED's



They are already set up for 12 volts and I can probably snake one down near the front.

Probably should've gotten the Million color RGB one.


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post #18 of 34 Old 09-15-2020, 01:03 PM
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I kinda hate the green domes in my cluster that the lights stick in on Mr. Jeep.

I may snatch them off, I reckon the green tint is supota be EZ on the eyes, but hard to read the gauges. I think the headlight interior dimmer switch is EZ enough to tone down (or up to see). I'm not "auto-spoiled" having my vehicle being a robot slave to me.

On "Willy" the dash light originally was "a dash light" sticking out from the dash and shining back on the gauges.

This was 1940s technology and lit up the speedo and 4 separate surrounding gauges. I guess it was EZ to replace, being external, and efficient instead of 5 separate bulbs.

My more modern gauges that I used were back lit and the original "one light" casting light all over the dash (and further) was annoying and deceived my eyes. I eliminated it!

This left the "unlit" speedo on my dash. I kinda strung 4 "Ford" instrument panel light bulbs with those "push" holders (same bulbs as CJ side markers--the holder is smaller and twists on a Ford panel) a few wires and solder made it work.

It was still not bright as I wanted, I pulled apart once again and used shiny "Pie Pan" and "aluminum foil" on the inner circumference and in the rear as to reflect my light modification better.

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post #19 of 34 Old 09-15-2020, 01:50 PM Thread Starter
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My Fiat used light fiber to illuminate switches and things. Only 1 bulb needed but when it burned out...
My Prius uses 1 LED to put a soft illumination on the center console. You don''t even notice it.
Hondas light up everything, even the cup holders. Do not understand why you need an illuminated cup holder of speaker grills...

I think Volvo had the best Idea, Ability to turn off all the gauge lights you don't need when driving at night.
I was a happy man when I figured out how to turn off the navigation screen on my old Prius when driving at night at night.


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post #20 of 34 Old 09-15-2020, 09:08 PM
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I have had trouble with the 12V bulb grounding properly in the clock housing and thus not lighting at all-but the clock keeps good time. Ironically the tach lights up nice but does not work!
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post #21 of 34 Old 09-18-2020, 05:25 PM Thread Starter
John Strenk
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Well the tiny, eye blinding led lights arrived today.

626b9d9d-a4b0-4ee7-a0d4-6f6216ba86c2.jpg
140e6678-4b1c-49d4-8619-8a3f9072c94c.jpg

When playing aroun trying to get them in as close to the front as possible, I found the reverse true.

There is a position just passed the housing that the light is brightest illuminating the dial.

The LED I tried before directed all its light forward and not out the sides. Only 15* light pattern

f36348ee-7da1-4467-991c-7d43eceb5391.jpg

I played with a couple of bulbs but they were to dim.
Click image for larger version

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I grabbed a bulb with the LEDs around the perimeter. 360* pattern.

c2678176-a7b3-43be-aa68-1420ef0866b8.jpg

Ta Da!

d3196ad1-fa7b-4776-9302-61bfcca78a8d.jpg

It worked great. So I ordered a set with the correct base and LED positioning.

a1c6f33d-46a6-4c6d-acd8-2704efdd6544.jpg


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post #22 of 34 Old 09-24-2020, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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Well I got the new LEDs in today and the clock looks great.

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This is the LED I bought.

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Tomorrow Iím going to see what I can do about the tach.

fd40c0bb-5157-44a6-9fe5-cbdbaebea914.jpg

After I replace a burnt out LED.

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Seriously ?
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post #23 of 34 Old 09-24-2020, 09:58 PM
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John, clock light looks good. I am going to order than light tonight. Just curious, as I have not followed your dash build, but did you also replace the other gauge lights with similar LED replacements?
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post #24 of 34 Old 09-25-2020, 03:59 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cpadget View Post
John, clock light looks good. I am going to order than light tonight. Just curious, as I have not followed your dash build, but did you also replace the other gauge lights with similar LED replacements?
No, not yet, this was the first LED light of that style that I tried.
I'm trying different styles as I go along.

The first LED I tried in the clock and even the incandescent light I tried in the clock were terrible. Playing around I discovered that the light emitting part, whether LED or incandescent needs to be at just the right height or the light spill won't reach the face.

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On the speedometer, there is one LED in the bottom that is very bright reflecting off the metal at the bottom of the speedometer. Pulling apart many speedometers I discovered that the later OEM ones all have a blackout coating to cut down on the bottom light reflecting off the metal part and shining into your eyes. I'm going to take this one apart and put some black felt in that area.

Some of the replacement speedometer don't even have a light in the bottom of the housing.

Anyway, the speedometer face you see has a mixture of incandescent lights on top and 1 LED on the bottom. The bottom LED has a limited light dispersal angle and is better suited to indicators like warning lights and turn signal indicators. Not for general illumination.

This is the first style LED I tried.


The cluster of 4 gauges you see (3 you see, one you don't) Has the limited dispersal on top and regular incandescent bulbs on the bottom 2. Not too bad.

The Tachometer currently has some unknown incandescent light in it. I'll be working on that this weekend. unlike the clock where the light goes directly into the back of the clock, the tachometer just lays in a trough on the side of the tach. I guess it worked at one time.


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post #25 of 34 Old 09-25-2020, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by John Strenk View Post
On the speedometer, there is one LED in the bottom that is very bright reflecting off the metal at the bottom of the speedometer. Pulling apart many speedometers I discovered that the later OEM ones all have a blackout coating to cut down on the bottom light reflecting off the metal part and shining into your eyes. I'm going to take this one apart and put some black felt in that area.
Wow, thanks for this statement- was wondering why there was a dried up and crumbly piece of black tape there on the inside of the speedo housing. Makes perfect sense now-

Appreciate your write-up on this.

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post #26 of 34 Old 09-27-2020, 05:02 PM
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I went with SuperbrightLEDs and they are terrific also they come in different colors including the night vision red;

https://www.superbrightleds.com/cat/...cluster-gauge/

The parts shop that stocks part for Skylab II will not have parts for our year/model of Jeep
We cannot accurately judge the trajectory of a speeding critter (cat, dog, sasquatch)
Record heat waves and floods only occur when we visit that area
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post #27 of 34 Old 09-27-2020, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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Yep, all these are from SuperbrightLED also.


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post #28 of 34 Old 09-27-2020, 08:38 PM
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I thought I recognized 'em

The parts shop that stocks part for Skylab II will not have parts for our year/model of Jeep
We cannot accurately judge the trajectory of a speeding critter (cat, dog, sasquatch)
Record heat waves and floods only occur when we visit that area
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post #29 of 34 Old 10-13-2020, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by John Strenk View Post
Yep, all these are from SuperbrightLED also.
Which part number worked the best? They list too many options.
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post #30 of 34 Old 10-13-2020, 07:02 PM Thread Starter
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Which part number worked the best? They list too many options.
Iím not by my computer but steeling the picture from above, this is the one I bought



The tach is brighter but not as good as the clock. Right now the light in the tach is ighting up my footwell.
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