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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well, I just picked up an extra instrument cluster off of Ebay .



I am going to mount the display for my radar detector somewhere in the cluster so it looks more "factory".

I do have a question; perhaps OTTO can answer. Does the car keep it's mileage in the body computer or in the cluster itself?

Just wondering because when I put the new cluster in the car, I want to retain the mileage on my car and not the mileage that was on whatever car this came out of. My brother said he's almost positive the mileage is retained in the computer. (Supposedly on different vehicles it's different...Grand Cherokee is in the cluster and so is the Wrangler.)

Anyway, I guess I'll find out when I plug it in either way.:cry:
 

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The mileage is stored in the engine computer, not the cluster.

(If you can belive someone who can't install a damm mirror:mad: )

Later.
 

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Intrepidatious:

I am pretty positive its stored in the computer. Reason: Remember when we installed my EVIC? Well when we first turned it on... the Trip mileage on the EVIC was equal to my actual mileage on the car (and not from the EVIC itself or its previous owner)... got the info from the R/Ts computer.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Cool, now I feel a little better. I also plan on changing the color of the bulbs to a bright blue (kinda like the Volkswagen have) Doesn't Warlord have that also?? (or someone??)

Either way, anyone know how the cluster comes out? I'm sure I'll figure it out once I get it....but a little beforehand knowledge always helps. :)
 

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i think it's 98purdue that has the blue cluster lights. and yes, the mileage is stored in the PCM, not the dash.
 

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Intrepidatious said:
Cool, now I feel a little better. I also plan on changing the color of the bulbs to a bright blue (kinda like the Volkswagen have) Doesn't Warlord have that also?? (or someone??)
I don't have them, yet. :)

I have plans to do that, but I'm hesitant to take out my cluster. I guess I'll have to look for one on Ebay also. :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Once I get it and figure it out Warlord, I'll let you know how to take it out. Don't waste your money.:bigsmile:
 

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I think I posted the steps for taking the cluster out a while ago with the blue LED dash threads, but I can't remember where it is... I have a slow connection here at work so I don't feel like searching for it. Anyways, getting the cluster out is relatively easy, and gets easier after the first time you do it. There are only a few screws and most of the stuff just snaps off.

It's been a while since I did this so the steps may not be 100% accurate.

-First, take off the shifter knob and take off the surrounding piece that houses the cigarette lighter and covers the shifting assembly.

-then take off the piece that is around the HVAC and stereo and disconnect the HVAC harnesses.

-Below the steering wheel theres the large dash panel that has a screw on the lower right hand side, almost underneath it. There are also two screws holding that piece in on the left side visible once you remove the fuse box kick panel. Then the whole thing snaps out (pull down and towards you)

-there should be 2 or 3 screws underneath that just under the steering wheel that were covered by the pieces you just removed. You might want to unscrew the steering column cover (star screws) and that comes apart if you squeeze the sides the right way (there's clips on the inside).

-There are two more screws that were underneath the fuse box kick panel holding the upper black piece on. Once the steering column piece is off, it makes it easier to pull the black plastic piece surrounding the dash cluster off. I don't think the column piece is required to come off... it just makes it a lot easier to get at the piece surrounding the cluster. That black cluster piece just snaps off too once the screws are taken out.

-Now the cluster is exposed. There should be two screws on the bottom, then the clear cover piece should come off. (possibly two more screws on the top... can't remember exactly) then there should be two more screws on the bottom (I'm pretty sure), then the whole cluster pulls and snaps out... be patient and don't be afraid to pull hard. You're likely to scrape your knuckles unless you find a real comfortable way of pulling on it. Try to pull it as evenly on all sides as possible. The harnesses are fixed in the rear and as it pulls out, the harnesses disconnect.

-Disassembling the cluster itself is pretty much obvious from there.

Hope this helps
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If you can find the post on how to do the Blue LED's in the dash, I'd really like to do that. I can't seem to make the search work in my favor....:dozeoff:

Or if you could post what you did it would be appreciated. What kind of LED's did you use, how did you hook them up...etc etc..

Thanks!:bigsmile:
 

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Intrepidatious:

If you can manage to get your radar display into that cluster.... I think I know what my next mod will be. :cool: :cool: :cool:

Why did you buy the extra cluster anyways? Just to have a spare in case you f--- yours up?
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I bought it so I could work on it and not have to take apart my dash until I was ready to install it. I'd hate to drive around with no speedo or gas gauge for a couple of days!!! :wink:

Besides, It was cheap.
 

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I hear that man. Smart call. Post pics when you are done with it. That I gotta see.
 

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Intrepidatious said:
Well, I just picked up an extra instrument cluster off of Ebay for $12.50!!

I am going to mount the display for my radar detector somewhere in the cluster so it looks more "factory".

Won't that defeat the effectiveness of the radar detector...beneath/under/between plastic/vinyl/steel. If you upgrade to a laser/radar detector, doubt this configuration would work.

Sorry if I'm stepping in it and don't know your concept, but just some thoughts ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #17
no matter what I put in earlier it told me to put in at least 4 words. I haven't tried it again since, but I'll give it another shot.:crazy:

As for the radar detector being behind all the steel etc, I will have the actual radar detector remotely mounted (behind the bumper or if I can fit it in my OTIS) Only the display lights will be in my instrument cluster.:wink:
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Nevermind...it's "word length"....apparently LED isn't a long enough word for it to search with. It has to be at least 4 characters I guess. I'll use some other phrasing to find it. :baaa:
 

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www.newark.com has blue leds

part# TLWB7600

$1.11 each (half the price of the ones that I got)

4.3v @ 50mA

There are 6 back-light holes in the dash.

Find a resistor for each LED ranging from 171 ohms to 192 ohms. Make sure all LEDs have the same resistor value... and try to find a resistor closer to 192 ohms. RadioShack has resistors for very cheap. Make sure the resistor can handle at least 1/2 watt to be safe (usually printed on the package). The resistor can heat up if it can't handle the power... even though we're not talking about very much power at all. If you can't find the exact value you want, try combining resistors. Here's an example: Lets say you want 180 ohms of resistance. you can connect two 90 ohm resistors in series to make 180 ohms, or connect two 360 ohms in parallel to make 180 ohms. (make sense?)

The LEDs I have are 3mm round. These that I found on newark.com are ~7mm square with a 3mm round lens. These square ones can handle more current than mine so they should be brighter than the ones I have. There are 4 leads instead of 2, which is just to provide better heat transfer. It just means there are 2 leads for the positive and 2 for the negative leads. You can see on the metal leads inside the LED that there are 2 tiny holes on one side... that is the positive (+) side. That side gets the resistor to limit the current. The other side (-) gets soldered directly to the dash circuit board. On the back of the circuit board, there are two metal tracings per hole that the light bulb leads on the plastic fittings connect to. The metal tracing on the top (closest to the blinker indicators) is the negative... I'm pretty sure anyways. Solder the negative (-) leads of the LEDs to that and solder one side of the resistor to the positive (+) leads of the LEDs and the other side of the resistor to the other metal tracing on the circuit board. (Confused yet?).

When you try it out for the first time, don't put the whole dash back together. Just put the cluster in enough to snap into the harnesses and turn your parking lights on to test it. You should be able to take the guage faces off or put them back on while the cluster is snapped into place so you can tell whether the LEDs are aimed right. You may need to adjust them if you have dark spots on your guage faces. Just in case, I would turn off the parking lights and make sure the ignition is off before taking off or putting on the guage faces.

These LEDs are wider angled than mine. I had to use my dremel to flatten the top of the lens on each LED to make the beam very wide so it will illuminate the whole guage face. Just as a comparison, my LEDs were 20 degree angles and these that I found on the internet are 75 degree angles. If the angles on these LEDs aren't wide enough, you might have to shave the lens on the LEDs flat with a dremel or something similar. I'm thinking that these LEDs SHOULD be wide enough angled... but I could be wrong. I wouldn't shave the tops off the lenses unless you have to unless you have a good polishing compund with your dremel to work with so more light gets through the lens.

Anyways, I hope this helps... Like I said before, it helps to have some experience with basic electronics.

for some pictures of the insides of the guage cluster, I have some pictures that you might have already seen at aol8mydog.freeservers.com. It shows how I did my LEDs, which will differ from what I explained above since the LEDs are different.
 
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