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Old 01-23-2006, 10:53 PM   #326
Rubr_Duky
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 04jaxwrex
i found that by getting the bulb wet (licking it) the condoms slide on very easy!
bulb-licker





RD
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Old 01-23-2006, 10:53 PM   #327
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yeah i just pinch the air out.
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:04 AM   #328
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubr_Duky
bulb-licker


Ok I was wrong and my memory is getting hazy. The craze I remember wasn't exactly DIY. The Sentra people were using NEEDLE KITS to change needle colors.
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:39 AM   #329
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I need some help, i did the mod this weekend but when i went to drive it to work today my tach and speedo didn't work. i checked the fuses (even though i didn't see one specifically for the speedo/tach) and double checked my electrical connections (cannon plugs). Did I inadvertatly hose myself? or am i missing something obvious?
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Old 01-24-2006, 07:37 AM   #330
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Check if the rings popped up under the needles.
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Old 01-24-2006, 11:32 AM   #331
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Is it difficult or potentially dangerous to just remove the needles and take the guages off to sand the back of them?
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:06 PM   #332
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tminus - absolutely! i've been looking around for people with similar problems to mine and most of the solutions for a needle that has come off or broken is to get a new guage cluster... however there is a place in tacoma that will 'reset' the needles and/or adjust the mileage on a new cluster...
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Old 01-24-2006, 01:39 PM   #333
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trunk monkey - thanks a TON! that was it exactly... i was all bummed out last night, come to find out i just didn't follow your instructions right... thanks again - Drew
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Old 01-25-2006, 12:36 AM   #334
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Default Wiring extra LEDs into the cluster...

okay... so i've decided to add extra LED's into the cluster... i'm planning on purchasing the LEDs from http://www.ledtronics.com/ and i'm thinking that the best thing to do will be to get 5mm flat top LED's with lead wires and position them in the cluster behind the face as needed, soldering them into the original bulb pickups in the back of the cluster. this might be tricky, but i think i can make it work.

now here's where i need help... if the LED's are rated at 1.9 - 2.6 V operating currency, i'd need five wired in series to not blow them, correct? or would four be better? and if so, the proper way to do that would just to be to connect them like this-

+12 source
|
LED 1
|+ lead
|
LED 2
|+lead
|
LED 3
|+lead
circuit Ground

right? or would the positive lead(the anode, right?) be on the positive side of each LED?

each led has a 110 degree viewing angle, so hopefully that will light up a good portion of the face for each one.

to put it concisely, if an LED operates at 1.9-2.6 V, i can wire five of them in a series and run them in a 12-14v circuit, correct?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

okay i just ordered a package of 25 LED's that are red and the specifications are as follows:
Code:
Color: Ultra Red Lens Type: W Clear 
Brightness: (mA): 20 
Brightness(MCD):100 

Operating Voltage Range (I assumed, it really just says Vf (V) typ/max): 1.9/2.6 (1.9 typical 2.6 maximum, probably?)

Color Wavelength@ 25degrees C: 657/642nm 

chromacity color coordinates: 0.72x 0.28y 
Viewing Angle: 110



So yeah- anyone know if i can wire five in series or should i do 6 to be safe at a typical operating voltage of 1.9v?

Last edited by Handsdown; 01-25-2006 at 01:02 AM.
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Old 01-25-2006, 12:43 AM   #335
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If you pop the needles off, then you lose the alignment with motor and needle stop. You'll notice the stop is for the needle, not the motor that drives it.

Read this thread, and you'll find a couple of people that have intentionally or accidentally popped the needles off (not an easy task, I thought) and could never get them lined up again. If you somehow marked the alignmnet, and felt REALLY confident (different from blindly stupid) that you can do it, do so at your own risk, you've been warned. Someone mentioned that there's a company that does needle alignment, and odometer pre-setting, which means that if there's a company that does it, it's either difficult, takes some sort of specialized skill or equipment, or they're making a quick buck at your expense-- you decide. I'd bet on the first two.

I have only two requests for optical adhesive... any more takers? If not, I'm going to send the full sample sheet (about 3"x5") to each and be done with it.

RD
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Old 01-25-2006, 12:50 AM   #336
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Handsdown
each led has a 110 degree viewing angle, so hopefully that will light up a good portion of the face for each one.
Visible angle is a tricky term.

The shape of the LEDs is intentional, to attempt to focus the light in a generally forward direction.

if this is an LED: =D

then this is it's dispersion: =D<

and this is it's 'viewing angle': =D|

But you see, the point of greatest intensity is here: =D-

As you float away from 'head on... (from '-' to '<' to '|') the intensity of the light diminishes.

I guess what I am saying, is that I am not certain that this would help hot spots, but it would certainly 'shed more light' on the situation.

RD
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:04 AM   #337
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i'm counting on just wiring as many series as i need in order to spotlight the hot spots

i updated with more info...
and actually the LED's are more like this: =[] ... they have a flat top...

if i use the stock lighting stalk to dim them, they should be fine, right? lower voltage isn't going to hurt them, only higher voltage?
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:14 AM   #338
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from what I understand of LEDs, you can run them anywhere between their max voltage, and forward voltage, below that, the don't light, and you're causing some sort of damage. The brightness will change slightly within that range.

I've nothing else to add.

RD
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:18 AM   #339
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I've also gone for a floodlighting type arrangement. I had lots of blue led bulbs left over so soldered pigtails of stiff wire on them and soldered those to the bridges on the lighting circuit on the board. Have to check polarity of course. I've got an extra four in the cluster now and it helps a lot with filling in the dark spots. I just left three plain incandescent bulbs in to light the redline and needles. It doesn't have to dominate, you just need enough non-blue spectrum in there to light the red parts.
I like Handsdown's idea of clusters of leds, you can arrange them together but point them where you need the backfill. As long as the leds aren't the tight focus lens type this should work well.
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Old 01-25-2006, 01:27 AM   #340
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awesome, thank you both!.

redwagon- were your LED's designed for 12v? it sounds like you wired them individually, and I'm sort of confused as to whether i should do five or six of the 2.6v LEDs in series... or even wire them in series at all... think i read about someone on rs25 who did it with 3v LED's in series in order to run it on the 12v current.

EDIT: Wait!!! No, it was this tutorial that I got that from.

http://www.theledlight.com/ledcircuits.html (or here)

it details how to wire LED circuits, i think this is a good resource.

Quote:
When LEDs are placed in a series, the voltage is dispersed between the LEDs, meaning less voltage goes to each LED. This can be very useful. For example, if a 12 volt adapter were powering one LED, there'd be 12V going through that LED which is way too much for any LED to handle and would result in a rather unpleasant burning smell.

However, if you take that same 12V power source and put 4 LEDs in series, there would be 3V going to each LED and (assuming the LEDs are made to run off 3V) each would be powered and just dandy. Check out this illustration:

LEDs wired in series

It's important to notice how the LEDs are positioned: (-) (+), (-) (+), etc. making sure that the end (-) connects to the (-) wire and the end (+) connects to the (+) wire, if any LEDs are backwards nothing bad will happen, they just won't turn on.

If three LEDs were in series with a 12V source, each would receive 4V, if six were in series, each would receive 2V, etc.

"But what if I have four LEDs powered from a 12V source and I want each to receive less than than 3V/ea?" This is where the little 'Resistor(s)' squiggly comes in. By adding a resistor it's possible to tone down the amount of voltage each receives. To find out what value resistor you should use, use an led calculator such as this one . Go to the middle form where it says 'LEDs in series' and simply type in your power sources' voltage, the LEDs' voltage you'd like and the LEDs current capability (use 20mA.) It then tells you what ohmage resistor to stick in the circuit.

Last edited by Handsdown; 01-25-2006 at 01:36 AM.
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Old 01-25-2006, 03:15 AM   #341
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Yes, I had bought a bunch of leds made into replacement signal bulbs, so I just soldered some extras to the board in strategic locations. Your idea is much better, and good find with the tutorial
I'm thinking I'll use some of the led bulbs that I busted and wire a bunch of little leds in the base on stiff wire, epoxy to fix the wires, poke the whole shebang into the board like a regular bulb and then point the leds as I need them. OTOH it would be easy to daisy-chain them around the board with wire and stick the leds down with a dab of epoxy. I'd use 6 of those nominal 1.9V leds in series as you will get something like 2.36 across them while running and still have 2V with the engine off.
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Old 01-25-2006, 10:30 AM   #342
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubr_Duky
bulb-licker





RD


just kidding!

so...whatever works! those things are a pain to get on dry!
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Old 01-25-2006, 08:44 PM   #343
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 04jaxwrex


just kidding!

so...whatever works! those things are a pain to get on dry!
Actually, the moisture or other lubrication of some sort isn't such a bad idea, so long as it's not conductive, and doesn't burn, it shouldn't be a problem, just make sure you get all of the air out of them, and they're snug on the bulb.

RD
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Old 01-28-2006, 05:19 PM   #344
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anyone know where i can get brighter bulbs for the cluster?? i dont want LEDs
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Old 02-01-2006, 12:06 PM   #345
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I decided to attempt painting the bulbs as discussed in another thread...

The result was great on the keyring but the cluster was another matter.
  • (this is obvious) Without removing the green film it looks awful
  • There are some bulbs in the '06 cluster that can't be seen from the back of the cluster, and are not removable

<<edit>>

I went ahead and cleared the green off the cluster and turned out fairly nice. I'll post pics after I finish cleaning a few spots (turn signals, high beams, etc) and put a few more layers of paint on the bulbs to get a deeper red.

Last edited by nuclear; 02-01-2006 at 05:30 PM.
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Old 02-01-2006, 08:42 PM   #346
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Here's the results from painting the appropriate bulbs after clearing the green off the back of the gauge faces. I mistakenly painted the bulbs for turn signals, cruise control, and high beam indicators. I was pleased to discover I could wipe the paint off the appropriate bulbs to get the stock look for those without screwing up the red elsewhere. Unfortunately my camera didn't do a great job of truly capturing the red light; it is a deeper red and the hot spots aren't nearly as visible in person. I used House of Kolors KBC11-2Z paint on the bulbs.

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Old 02-01-2006, 10:33 PM   #347
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looks good... i got an 06 too.. was it pretty hard to do? how long did it take to do the whole thing?
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Old 02-01-2006, 10:55 PM   #348
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I'm not sure hard is the word I'd use; I was very concerned that the gauges would be broken by the time I was finished. I popped the gauges out of the cluster so that I could actually see the back of the faces. I didn't clean all of the green tint off--just where the light actually passed through. I also removed the green pieces that were under the LCD glass--which took a bit of a steady hand as to not break or scratch the glass. I then put 2 coats of paint on the bulbs.

Overall I'd say I spent 3-4 hours between cleaning and painting; and of course a 10 minute drive hooked up to my laptop so I could verify my speed and tach gauges were still working

<<edit>>

I should also mention the gear indicator was unaffected as I did not mess with the coating on it and it is lit by its own set of bulbs.

Last edited by nuclear; 02-01-2006 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 02-02-2006, 12:48 PM   #349
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W00T!!!
my leds have arrived, and i am currently researching the best way to solder them in.

if anyone has any tips on wiring leds in, please, let me know!

here is the biggest box EVER for the smallest package ever- 8x6x4, big enough for a gamecube-


and here are its contents, minus a world of packing penuts-


the package is about 2x4 and is most like a dimebag in size (no i don't smoke, but it was the first thing that came to mind)


the specifications for these LEDs are as follows:
Code:
Color: Ultra Red Lens Type: W Clear 
Brightness: (mA): 20 
Brightness(MCD):100 

Operating Voltage Range (I assumed, it really just says Vf (V) typ/max): 1.9/2.6 (1.9 typical 2.6 maximum, probably?)

Color Wavelength@ 25degrees C: 657/642nm 

chromacity color coordinates: 0.72x 0.28y 
Viewing Angle: 110
i have a 40' spool of 18g primary wire that i will use to extend the LED leads to where i need them, but I honestly don't think i'll use more than a foot of it. i have a friend with a soldering station and he said he'd help me.

I'm going to ask here to get feedback; but i don't expect anyone to know conclusive answers so don't feel put upon-

I need to know three things-

1- these are 2v nominal power usage LED's and have a 2.6v maximum operating current. if i daisychain five in series, i should be well within the bounds for my car's electical system(see my previous post about wiring LEDs in series). If I solder such a series into the normal bulb's power supply, will the LED's run off 12v or does the normal bulb socket have a different voltage? i just assume the guage cluster runs off 12v like the rest of the car...

2- with such a series wired into the illumination bulb socket, how will these LED's respond to the dimming function on the lighting stalk? i don't want to lose the dimming feature, for one of my biggest fears is that the extra LED's will be too bright at full brightness. the specifications for these particular LEDs don't mention anything about minimum required current, but i know some led's don't respond well to dimming circuits. the LEDs i have from autolumination(wedge based bulb replacements) dim fine, but i don't know what the features are that make that happen. how do i know, aside from testing it out and possibly frying five of my LEDs?(an acceptable risk)

3- With the leftover LED's, I plan on wiring them to a switch and creating a PCB array that will FACE the cluster from the outside... this way i will be able to illuminate the faces from the FRONT and wire them seperately for extra/different lighting on my command. if I do such a thing, what would the best mounting location be for the auxillary leds? if i mount it in front of the cluster plastic, I might get reflection, but if I do it behind the plastic, I might not get a full coverage, and will have to engineer a fully integrated mount IN the cluster and get the wires out of the stock cluster to a switch.



1 and 2 i need to know before i open up the cluster and attempt to put in these extra LEDs... 3 may never happen and won't need to if i can get 1 AND 2 answered and working.

Last edited by Handsdown; 02-02-2006 at 02:15 PM.
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Old 02-02-2006, 02:14 PM   #350
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I want my gauges a brighter green and the needles a bright red... To match my Defi's. Has anyone completed such a feat?
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