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Dim gauges..... hmmm

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Dim gauges..... hmmm
#1
  This topic is about my 1974 MG MGB GT
PatrickLewis.net Avatar
PatrickLewis.net Patrick Lewis
Brandon, FL, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB GT "Green Monster"
1977 MG MGB
I have been thinking about the dimness of the gauges and thought what if the gauge face plates were plastic instead of metal. That way the light could shine through them instead of having to around them when they are made of metal.

I took my gauges apart and took close up pictures of each gauge and use them as a template to create new ones that I could print on clear adhesive vinyl and apply to a sheet of thin plexiglass. Well my laser printer did not have enough ink coverage to make the black look black. I had them printed by a commercial printer and they look much better.

I did have to cut out the areas for the odometer, trip, and other windows (fuel, temp, etc) so that they would be clear and not translucent with the vinyl.

I also painted the back of the plexi with some frosting paint (I had to mask off the clear areas to keep them clear).

I think they turned out pretty good. I just have to cut them out with the scroll saw and install them.

I also did a set with a more antique look. They came out a little too transparent, but we will see how they look.



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RAY 67 TOURER Avatar
RAY 67 TOURER Ray Marloff
Fort Bragg, CA, USA   USA
1967 MG MGB "My Girl"
You might just have something there. RAY

course2kid Jeffrey Johnson
Fountain Valley, CA, USA   USA
1979 MG MGB "Lucy (Lucifer)"
Very interesting! Please keep us updated when you test them in the gages.

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tvrgeek Avatar
tvrgeek Silver Member Scott S
Hillsborough, North Carolinia, USA   USA
1965 MG MGB
If they work, run off a few more. I'm sure you'll get some takers. They would be a nice complement to my VDO Vision speedo and tach. To make them more universal, yo need to do the mechanical OP/Temp too.

I will say, thew LED bulbs make quite a good improvement by themselves.



Cogito ergo sum periculoso

neil stern Avatar
Florida, Naples, USA   USA
1980 MG MGB "My Tomato"
nice

Cmpozr Avatar
Cmpozr Ray Weidner
Forest, VA, USA   USA
Night pics mandatory.



74 Chrome Bumper MGB
71 Triumph TR-6 (original owner)

"Every LBC is a rolling restoration."
"These are the cars that try men's souls."
"The past is a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there."

Andrew73B Avatar
Andrew73B Gold Member Andrew Milne
St.-Lazare, QC, Canada   CAN
1973 MG MGB "Barbie Car"
Keep us posted! and yes, night pictures would be great

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PatrickLewis.net Avatar
PatrickLewis.net Patrick Lewis
Brandon, FL, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB GT "Green Monster"
1977 MG MGB
I was also thinking that maybe the voltage getting to the bulbs may not be as strong as they should be.

Maybe installing a relay for the dash lights might also help like they did for my headlights...

I bought the new scroll saw (I always like excuses to get more tools. thumbs up ) today and should get to cutting them out this week.



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Jwpotts Avatar
Jwpotts James Potts
Lexington, KY, USA   USA
1970 MG MGB
Post pics when installed, great idea

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cyprinus Avatar
cyprinus Phillip Burbank
Leicester, leicestershire, UK   GBR
1978 MG MGB GT "BEE"
They look very nice, a good idea and by the looks of it a good job.



Amateurs built the ark...............................................................professionals built the Titanic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The early bird gets the worm....................................................but the second mouse gets the cheese!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PatrickLewis.net Avatar
PatrickLewis.net Patrick Lewis
Brandon, FL, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB GT "Green Monster"
1977 MG MGB
Well, the first round using the clear plexi did not work out too well. With them in the gauges, they look all black and with the lights on, they are too washed out. Granted, I do have a small LED strip in the bottom of the gauge, but it needs something else.

I am going to try with some white plexi next.



Brandon MG Club
www.PickNHLGames.com
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www.PatrickLewis.net


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neil stern Avatar
Florida, Naples, USA   USA
1980 MG MGB "My Tomato"
Nice try remember perfection takes a second longer

Donthuis Avatar
Donthuis Don van Riet
Rijswijk, ZH, Netherlands   NLD
Indeed, I started with warmwhite LED's from some seller in HongKong, whic already made quite an improvement. Later I found even cheaper, stronger coolwhite LED's and mounted them instead.
Although the rheostat worked better on the first set than on the second, I am by now accustomed to the coolwhite color and using the higher light levels on the rheostat anyhow

Of course replacing the rheostat with an electronic pulse width modulation device removes any sensitivity to the type of LED's being used, but this complicates matters. Since I kept the bulb in the cigarette lighter, some load on the rheostat remains, a cheaper solution to retain at least some of the rheostat function. Another cheap solution is changing to a higher resistance rheostat eye rolling smiley

In reply to # 3734544 by tvrgeek If they work, run off a few more. I'm sure you'll get some takers. They would be a nice complement to my VDO Vision speedo and tach. To make them more universal, yo need to do the mechanical OP/Temp too.

I will say, thew LED bulbs make quite a good improvement by themselves.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-05-22 02:46 AM by Donthuis.

PatrickLewis.net Avatar
PatrickLewis.net Patrick Lewis
Brandon, FL, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB GT "Green Monster"
1977 MG MGB
I did notice that the voltage at the bulb sockets was only 10.5 volts and this is with the rheostat bypassed.

Is that a normal voltage reading for the gauge bulbs?



Brandon MG Club
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Donthuis Avatar
Donthuis Don van Riet
Rijswijk, ZH, Netherlands   NLD
No it isn't, the stabilised 10 Volts is only on the two feeds to the fuel and temp gauges, all the lightning on permanent (headlights and others) or switched battery (the rest) is on nominal 12 Volts!
An easy check is measuring the voltage in the cigarettelighter: is it also 10,5 Volts you have a major problem, if just battery on 12 Volts something may be wrong with the ignition switch wiring

In reply to # 3737377 by PatrickLewis.net I did notice that the voltage at the bulb sockets was only 10.5 volts and this is with the rheostat bypassed.

Is that a normal voltage reading for the gauge bulbs?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2018-05-16 01:41 PM by Donthuis.

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