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Old 04-02-2005, 02:44 PM   #1
Trunk_Monkey
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Default Interior Color Change Tutorial: OEM Boost Gauge

OEM Boost Gauge Color Change Tutorial

What you need:
1 (.2) Lamp Cover CLICK ME
2 Flat Screwdrivers
Procedure:
Drop down steering height adjuster arm and put steering in lowest setting:
Insert the two screwdrivers in between the rubber housing and the gauge itself and gently pry it out towards you. Take your time, you will almost need to gently wiggle it out. Vary the positions between 12 and 6; 3 and 9 o'clock when prying:
Take a look at the black plastic tube on the back of the boost gauge, once located, gently push in into the back of the gauge. This is done to create the slack necessary to pull the gauge out. Wiggling it out gets easier the more the gauge comes out, don't get discouraged, take your time and dont scratch or break anything. Once you can catch the lip of the gauge (as seen in pic below) try wiggling it out just holding the lip. Remember to keep giving it more slack by pushing in the black "wire loom":
When you manage to wiggle it out it will look something like the pic below. The top connector is for the bulb power, the bottom is the vaccum line - its a mechanical gauge. But the middle black knob is what concerns us, it is the bulb (righty tighty, lefty loosey applies), unscrew it and put a cover over it.:
Reverse order of install to put your car back together, be sure to gently pull the slack back out.
Important Note: Some of the new-gen boost gauges have an LED built into the gauge, becuase LED's dont burn out, they dont make them removable and there is no access to it. If you dont see a black knob there is no way to change the color of your gauge. Please take a look and if you don't have one post your car info.
*MY's this applies to will be edited in here when you inform me*

Note: This is the one color change where I reccommend using only one bulb cover. This is because its not built like most gauges, its simply a halo of light that illuminates the face from the front, using two covers I found it to be too dark. On a side note, I tried blue lamp covers and it came out a little too teal for my taste, the red color seems to work far better.


Modification of your car involves risks and may void your warranty. I can not be held responsible for the modifications you consciously decide to undertake nor the results of doing so. If you believe anything is incorrect in this post or you have something to add please PM me.
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Last edited by Trunk_Monkey; 04-02-2005 at 04:40 PM.
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Old 04-02-2005, 05:05 PM   #2
Mulder
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I'll add that you can replace the 2.1W bulb with a #2723 bulb which is 2.3W, to make it noticeably brighter. When I first got my car with the OEM gauge pack I found the boost gauge to be difficult to read at night, but by changing the bulbs in the gauges to the 2.3W, and removing the condom from the one in the boost gauge (didn't care about the color) it got much brighter and easier to read.
For purposes of this thread the brighter bulb should help.
Also I see your gauge doesn't read 0, unfortunately this is very common.
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Old 04-02-2005, 06:06 PM   #3
Trunk_Monkey
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Nice tip with the brighter bulb. I thought the below 0 reading was fine, as I am above sea level?
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Old 04-02-2005, 07:23 PM   #4
Mulder
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The gauge should compensate, the mechanical movement measures the differential between the ambient pressure and the manifold so your elevation makes no difference. Look at the OEM gauges on other cars in your area, you'll probably see some that read zero and some that don't.
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Old 04-02-2005, 08:18 PM   #5
scoobdude
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excellnet. thanks
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Old 04-02-2005, 09:03 PM   #6
Trunk_Monkey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulder
The gauge should compensate, the mechanical movement measures the differential between the ambient pressure and the manifold so your elevation makes no difference. Look at the OEM gauges on other cars in your area, you'll probably see some that read zero and some that don't.
That would mean I am boosting above stock pressure, with a stock turbo and EM. Or the error is not directly proportioning,
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Old 04-09-2005, 07:01 PM   #7
IntraWRX
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you can also use the #74 size LEDs in place of the bulb. i used a blue LED and it's significantly brighter than than what it used to be. i also used the #74 LEDs inside the gauge cluster, but the light dispersion in the gauge cluster isn't as good as in the boost gauge (ie boost gauge is brighter than gauge clusters)

i got my LEDs from here: http://autolumination.com/74.htm
you can also find them here http://www.superbrightleds.com/specs/74_t15.htm
obviously, these are not the only places you can find them and you can probably find better prices elsewhere.
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Old 04-09-2005, 10:01 PM   #8
Uncle Scotty
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Instead of a 'condom', you can use a permanent marker to color the bulbs, too...Sharpies work great
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Old 04-09-2005, 11:55 PM   #9
IntraWRX
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Scotty, was wondering if blue sharpie would end up looking teal like the condoms do? or do they look bluer than condoms?

Thanks!
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Old 04-10-2005, 01:18 PM   #10
Trunk_Monkey
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My guess is still teal, but give it a shot, you can probably scape it off.
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Old 04-10-2005, 02:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trunk_Monkey
My guess is still teal, but give it a shot, you can probably scape it off.


.....the green Sharpie looks teal...matches the '02-03 dash lights fairly well......and it comes right off with a bit of alcohol...dunno about the blue....try it and see

...you can experiment with how much you cover the bulb....ie....just the tip....or one side....or stripes....to get the ammount of color you want.....
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Old 04-10-2005, 02:38 PM   #12
Trunk_Monkey
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Nice idea with the striping you could probably even mix colors to get the one you want.
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Old 04-11-2005, 01:13 AM   #13
IntraWRX
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striping?! sweet, hot pin---ermm, STi pi--- cherry blossom red, here i come!
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Old 04-12-2005, 07:41 AM   #14
Orson
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I just did the Mulder's 2723 bulb modification. Holy cow! That is a big difference.

On a slightly unrelated note, anyone try to open up the Lamco gauge? I want to paint the pointer yellow.
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Old 04-12-2005, 08:08 AM   #15
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You can open it up, it just takes some time. The metal bezel ring is crimped in place and can be removed by working around the back edge with a small screwdriver, gradually prying it up until it can be slid off from the front. Be careful not to damage the glass face or the bezel itself, and of course try not to slip with the screwdriver and put it through your hand. To reinstall, first make sure the gauge face and glass are perfectly clean, then put everything back in place and re-bend the rear of the bezel to lock it back down.
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Old 05-22-2005, 04:20 PM   #16
arc190
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I don't know about all permanent markers, but Sharpies wear off pretty quick. I colored my HVAC bulbs red and started noticing them slowly changing to pink within a couple weeks. The condoms should work good, but it's kind of discouraging that it costs less than $2 to buy them, but after tax and shipping it's $10.
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Old 05-22-2005, 04:26 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arc190
I don't know about all permanent markers, but Sharpies wear off pretty quick. I colored my HVAC bulbs red and started noticing them slowly changing to pink within a couple weeks. The condoms should work good, but it's kind of discouraging that it costs less than $2 to buy them, but after tax and shipping it's $10.

...that's interesting.....my boost/egt have been colored for....well...almost 2 years now.....and still are green enough.....

....mebbe the red isn't as good or the lights are hotter and eat the dye faster.....
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Old 05-23-2005, 11:48 PM   #18
writersblock
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I tried this modification with green bulb covers from Parts Express, hoping to match the stock 2002 interior illumination. Unfortunately, it came out too dark. I ordered the brighter bulb as referenced earlier in the thread, as well as several other incandescent bulbs and leds. I'll report back my findings to those who are interested in trying to match their factory interiors.

Writersblock
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Old 07-21-2005, 10:23 PM   #19
bfarm
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Maybe a dumb question here:

Are stock boost gauges in all WRXs on the right of the steering column? I noticed this in your pics.
Because I think STi's are all on the left... mine is (05 STi) and so is this STi one: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=793523
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Old 07-23-2005, 09:02 PM   #20
MU5A5HI
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My stock 04 WRX has its dealer installed boost gauge on the left side. I think it changed to left instead of right on MY04.. which would explan why all the STi's (USDM anyhow) have it on the left.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bfarm
Maybe a dumb question here:

Are stock boost gauges in all WRXs on the right of the steering column? I noticed this in your pics.
Because I think STi's are all on the left... mine is (05 STi) and so is this STi one: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/showthread.php?t=793523
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Old 07-23-2005, 10:26 PM   #21
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it's on the left in my '05 wrx
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Old 07-25-2005, 10:20 PM   #22
MU5A5HI
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Just did the mod today. Thanks for the awesome writeup trunk_monkey. I tried months ago for a long time and could not figure out how to get the boost gauge apart.. yet it was so easy with the instructions. Looks very nice. I got the 2723 bulb and put 2 red bulb covers on it.
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Old 07-25-2005, 10:37 PM   #23
bfarm
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Ah I understand now about the boost location. Thanks for clarifying.

The gauge in my STi definitely blocks the outside temp reading pretty well. It blocked it thoroughly enough that I didn't notice it until I read through the manual entirely and read about it
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Old 07-27-2005, 12:05 AM   #24
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This is one mod I gotta do.
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Old 07-27-2005, 10:06 AM   #25
MU5A5HI
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If you are like me and have STi gauges in a regular WRX, blocking the 'outside temp' reading is a good 'feature'.. since i dont have an outside temp sensor, and the reading is always wrong. Yesterday it said 42 degrees all day and it was like 90. I was wishing for 42

Quote:
Originally Posted by bfarm
Ah I understand now about the boost location. Thanks for clarifying.

The gauge in my STi definitely blocks the outside temp reading pretty well. It blocked it thoroughly enough that I didn't notice it until I read through the manual entirely and read about it
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