Changing Dash Lights

Changing Dash Lights

Postby ag9111 on Sat Jan 08, 2011 7:49 pm

How do you change the dash lights? When I had the ML, the dash lights were a very soothing blue. Now that I have the MN, they are a very aggressive red. Due to my eye surgery, I have an issue reading the displays and am wondering if anybody knows how to change out the illuminants. I have the heater controls from an ML so thats not an issue but am looking at the control binacle and the steering controls. I know some of the queensland young guns, Fridge I'm looking at you, were playing with LED's at Geraldine but dont know if they were doing anything with the dash.
Anybody?
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby Cowboy Dave on Sat Jan 08, 2011 8:26 pm

wasn't there someone who changed their blue for red? although that may have only been the centre controls rather than the gauges. it was in the threads where people posted the diagrams for removing the centre dash bits I think.
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby trouble on Fri Jan 28, 2011 5:15 pm

I recall that as well CD maybe someone from South Africa.............could be wrong though :roll:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby chick_magnet_0001 on Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:01 pm

u would want to talk with kwyjibo about it, hes the QLD LED light specialist 8-) :roll: :roll: :roll:
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Changing Dash Lights

Postby fridgie on Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:07 pm

Kwyjibo is the main one I know for this, he has changed all the air con control lights on mine, the key barrel light on his and I'm reasonably sure he would know how to change the display lights. For some reason he is obsessed with the lights in his triton :lol:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby Homer on Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:08 pm

:lol: I wasn't dobbing the bloke in...but now it's open season...kwyjibo's the guru
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby ag9111 on Fri Jan 28, 2011 6:23 pm

Kwyjibo it is then. He off playing with somebody elses things.......... :shock:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby Cowboy Dave on Fri Jan 28, 2011 7:04 pm

nah here you go it was Jacky_Moo:

http://www.newtriton.net/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=51&t=5928&p=97210&hilit=red+leds#p95789

somewhere there he says he was pulling out the blue ones for red in the instrument cluster.
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Fri Jan 28, 2011 9:43 pm

oh hello
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby borngeek on Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:15 pm

kwyjibo wrote:oh hello


:roll:

AG, Kwyjibo has given me a collection of these that I am too shaky to install but he has shown me the tools and basics so will bring down when we have a working bee weekend sooooon???? :mrgreen:

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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Sat Jan 29, 2011 6:59 pm

its spreading like a plague... a good plague! :lol:

any questions just ask, can post up mine if ya like
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby ag9111 on Sat Jan 29, 2011 7:11 pm

kwyjibo wrote:its spreading like a plague... a good plague! :lol:

any questions just ask, can post up mine if ya like


Ok 8-)
What are the dash lights? T5? I assume you have used LEDS ,What sort do you have to get? the 16V ones? and were are they available from? How do you remove the dash to get at the lights?
What about the diff lock swithches etc. What sort of lights do tthey use? and are they easy to disassemble?
Suppose you dont know about the steering wheel control indication? :?

Any thing else you could add would be good :D
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:04 pm

ag9111 wrote:
kwyjibo wrote:its spreading like a plague... a good plague! :lol:

any questions just ask, can post up mine if ya like


Ok 8-)
What are the dash lights? T5? I assume you have used LEDS ,What sort do you have to get? the 16V ones? and were are they available from? How do you remove the dash to get at the lights?
What about the diff lock swithches etc. What sort of lights do tthey use? and are they easy to disassemble?
Suppose you dont know about the steering wheel control indication? :?

Any thing else you could add would be good :D


oh prolly should have checked back in here... sorry for the delay lol

ok my center console looks like this at the moment(changing occasionally)
In this spot there are 4 led's, mine are currently in order of green - purple - blue - white
mind you all these photos i took today in very sunny weather... under a carport, so the colors are normally brighter and look a bit different but u get the idea

as always remember to click photo for full size
Click to view larger picture

Q1 - yep the dash lights which include the center aircon controls + key ignition ring light + lower center console light(under cig tray) + glovebox are all T5 style wedge bulbs, and all have the same tiny light bulb which has a blue rubber sock over them to give them a whiter light (without them they have the colour temperature of a burning candle). By wedge it just means it literally wedges into the socket, unlike a bayonet light... they are very very small, here is a pic of a few that i have + the plug they fit into

Click to view larger picture

Q2 - I buy mine off ebay, basically if the picture looks anything like those ones then you'll be safe they are all 12V... some of them only work one way(polarity) you can tell this by the pins on the rear of the bulb only bend out on one side, which means they can only make contact in one way... so just spin it around. There are a couple different types of wedge led's as u can see, plenty of colors as well...

the other style of led's just have different light spreads, u can see from the pic that the ones with the flat surface mounted led is what's called smd(i find these to be the brightest and they have an even 180 degree spread) where as the other one has 3 separate forks which u can bend to point in each direction.

Q3 - how to remove/replace the lights? thats where the fun is at my friend! basically there is 2 ways to change these bulbs, bu depending on which ones you want to change you may have to use both methods... the 'easiest' way (providing u don't drop it ;) ) is to change the 2 outer bulbs is the pull off the plastic surround from the top screen part of the dash(with firm hands just pull it directly toward the rear of the cab, it is held in with 5 little clips) once its off you should see something like this
Click to view larger picture

as u can see i have removed 2 small parts of the plastic(which nobody will EVER see) and right in that spot are those little black sockets that are in the previous photo, they just twist out and come with the bulb and all, then you can change it over no worries.... i use a pair of hobby needle nose pliers to change them over, they are extremely handy (especially for the other method u will see)
Click to view larger picture

BUT be extremely careful, playing with tiny electrics means if u have butter fingers like me and drop the black plug... it may take a while to find where that little bastard fell to...... :oops: :oops: damn that killed a couple of hours getting that one...
Click to view larger picture

The other way to do it, and probably the safer(but much more time consuming) way is to pull off the knobs from the front and change the bulbs with the little hobby pliers, which is very much trial and error... you might get it within a few minutes or it may take u an hour... but if u do drop a bulb it just falls 1cm lower and u can pick it up and try again... the smd led's(with the flat surface) that i use in 2/4 of the plugs can be bent and also made directional as u will see if u try this so just point it slightly in the direction u want it to for a better spread
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture

I know nothing about the difflock switches sorry.. but i will know soon enough, may update this later if thats the case.
Also not sure wht u mean about steering wheel indication?

for those that are also curious, the ignition ring light is sorta easy, but u gotta pull everything off the streering column to get to it... here's one i prepared earlier :D (cause i aint goin outside now to do it again)
Click to view larger picture
this seems to be the only pic i took of the operation... but u can see the small black plastic enclosure above the ring? the T5 wedge plug enters from that side, so just twist it and pull the whole plug out then change the bulb... i used an smd led here too, but angled the led almost 90 degrees so it shines downward to the ring... looks like this after
Click to view larger picture

and for those that also want to change the bulb below the cig lighter.... too bad i aint gonna pull it apart now for a photo its too damned hot outside :lol: but you need to remove the middle section of the console to access it, this includes removing the head unit(there is a guide somewhere someone did for this i'm sure) same situation, i put in a smd le and turned the focus downward, photo
Click to view larger picture

The glovebox light is not any easier to get to... had to remove the black plastic cover inside the dash but above the glovebox opening, have a good look where the light is and you'll get the idea... this one was fantastic as now it lights up the whole thing! took this photo a few mins ago in broad daylight under carport
Click to view larger picture

As for led choice in which one to get, consider how bright you want it to be... the smd ones are brighter because it may look like 1 single led but its actually got 3 little diodes on the surface, where as others only have 2 or even 1, here is a pic to demonstrate
Click to view larger picture
so u can see the red one for example has 6 little led's, each with 1 diode, where the white ones have 3 diodes on each, u can just see the little dots(these are T10 bulbs btw, for roof - doors - numberplate - indicator etc). the fluro green one has 2 i believe, then the other ones that have the clear plastic or resin covering it i think only have 1 diode so they are not very bright... but the led is protected from heat this way so as to allow them to be use in the park lights of our trucks, if you use the brighter ones in the left of the pic they would soon burn out and fail eventually and look like the burnt one :o

i'll post a few more photos cause i took the trouble to upoad them to imageshack already :lol: :mrgreen:
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture

ok uh any more questions or did i answer them all???? any criticism of my grammar or post in general?? :geek:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby snowman on Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:11 pm

fridgie wrote:Kwyjibo is the main one I know for this, he has changed all the air con control lights on mine, the key barrel light on his and I'm reasonably sure he would know how to change the display lights. For some reason he is obsessed with the lights in his triton :lol:


geez you can say that again...........

is he coming at easter? might have to set up an "LED" tent you drive in one end all low tech bulbs and get kwyjiboed and drive out the other end all LED'ed. 8-) 8-)

interesting to hear Garth likes the cool blue more than the agro red........ ;)
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby borngeek on Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:23 pm

Nice work k man! I see a worthy sticky thread in your future :lol:

I think Garth refers to changing colour of instrument cluster as well cause in mn it is very bright brothel red... :P
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:25 pm

oh and cause i know some people are curious this is what the led's look like for the dash cluster...

here's one i prepared earlier :geek:

Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture
Click to view larger picture

Shouldn't be too hard to change these over, the pcb just pops out of the clear plastic enclosure so u can play with it... just gotta find the time and the patience... the lights behind all the needles are the same too
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 1:26 pm

borngeek wrote:I think Garth refers to changing colour of instrument cluster as well cause in mn it is very bright brothel red... :P


DAMMIT i was 2 seconds too slow lol :lol: :lol:

*EDIT* well according to my email it was 2 seconds... more like 3 minutes :roll:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby reeldreamer on Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:33 pm

Kyle the LED's in the Indicators are they orange or clear light? Do they make a big difference? I put some LED's in the ARB bar parkers aswell look really sweet!
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:41 pm

reeldreamer wrote:Kyle the LED's in the Indicators are they orange or clear light? Do they make a big difference? I put some LED's in the ARB bar parkers aswell look really sweet!


Um well i tried white ones but it turned into a yellow light through the orange blinker cover, so i bought orange ones and it looks much better, but i still find they are not as bright as the original bulbs (which are also T10 bulbs BUT they are oversized) so i've only got them in the indicators at the doors, so the front and rears are same old bulbs cause they're brighter...
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby ag9111 on Mon Jan 31, 2011 3:19 pm

Thanks Kyle.
The instrument binacle are the ones that I want to change most of all as I have trouble reading the dials at night, and of course they are the hardest ones to change. :roll:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby jop on Mon Jan 31, 2011 3:28 pm

Umm, i'll have some door ones and an interior one please 8-)

We were talking about doing this when we stayed over at cityview - burning the place down was so much more fun hey!
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 3:30 pm

nothing is more entertaining than a few big kids, a fire and a jerry can of petrol :twisted:
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby Storm Trooper on Mon Jan 31, 2011 5:37 pm

kwyjibo wrote:nothing is more entertaining than a few big kids, a fire and a jerry can of petrol :twisted:


arh Hell yeah.... where's diesel man Rick when you need him... :D

snowman wrote:is he coming at easter? might have to set up an "LED" tent you drive in one end all low tech bulbs and get kwyjiboed and drive out the other end all LED'ed. 8-) 8-)

interesting to hear Garth likes the cool blue more than the agro red........ ;)


I'll pay for that... in beer economy "soft blue lights in Interior all round. name your price kwyjibo!!!...
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby kwyjibo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 5:41 pm

damn i like the way this is going, i won't need to bring any beer for easter! :lol: :D
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Re: Changing Dash Lights

Postby Diablo on Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:53 pm

very nice write up Kyle :geek:

dont know about you, but when i did my ignition barrel a while back, it took me bloody ages. did not help that i was trying to use a 5mm LED instead of 3mm :lol:

And if anyone is interested, im happy to take some pics and show you how to wire up side step illumination so it comes on when the doors are opened, lock/unlock pressed etc. And if you can get a male and female plug of the right size it can be plug and play :D (sorry for hijack :lol: )
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