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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-10-2004, 03:51 PM
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dashlights

I'm trying to replace a couple burned out light bulbs in my dash (86 blazer), and am wondering how exactly to reach them and where exactly they are. So far I've taken the dashpad off and the external covering over the gauge cluster. I'm looking at another clear plastic cover which covers the gauges themselves. This looks like quite a pain in the rear to get off, and apparently has a few hidden screws that I can't seem to locate. Any tips or hints on this task before me? How far do I need to dig to find these little shi*ts. All this trouble for a few lightbulbs... Thanks for any and all info!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-10-2004, 07:44 PM
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Re: dashlights

Actually you don't have to take the front off to get to them. Just reach up under the dash and feel around for the backs of the light housings and give them a 1/4 turn or so and pull em out. Change out the bulb and pop it back in. They have the feel/llok or a stubby toggle switch... round with a tapered down back... if that makes sense.

On my 89 K5 I did have to take the front off for the very top right bulb... I could just get my finger tips on it, but not to the point where I could give it a turn. In the event that you have to take the front off, all I can say is, the screws are there... just look closely. I believe you also have to take the 2 or so screw that hold the tranny selection off too, just be careful with it and then let it hang out of the way.

While your thinking of doing the bulbs... you might think about getting these LEDs to put in there. I have not tried them, but was thinking of doing it due to the fact that the lighting in these dashes is poor to start with. Here is a link to a place that sells them. They have colors, or just white. They also sell the white face overlays (stickers) for the cluster faces. I'm really just interested in getting more light myself.

LED's
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-11-2004, 02:59 PM
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Re: dashlights

hey thanks for the help! LEDs sound like a good idea as well. I'm going to put a call into that company and see what I can get. The stock lighting is terrible, I totally know what you mean. Very noticable even when a single bulb goes out. Thanks again.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-12-2004, 01:00 PM
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Re: dashlights

Yeah, it's the pits.

You know theres a problem with the set-up when you go in to replace some burnt out bulbs, and find em all working. [img]images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] When I changed the bulbs a couple of weeks back, I even tried to put some foil in there to help bounce some light towards some of the dark areas. Didn't help. Well, actually it did help some, but not worth mentioning.

I'll most likely go with the LED's as well. Besides the brightness factor, LED usually last so much longer that it may be a very long time before I have to worry about it again.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 08-13-2004, 11:07 PM
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Re: dashlights

What a coincidence, I just ordered some of those exact bulbs. When they get here, I'll let you all know how they work out. [img]images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 08-14-2004, 07:31 PM
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Re: dashlights

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
When I changed the bulbs a couple of weeks back, I even tried to put some foil in there to help bounce some light towards some of the dark areas.

[/ QUOTE ]


I was thinking about something similar to that. You know that peice that goes under the lens/above the gauges, it's black plastic or metal depending on the vintage, and it's been painted light blue on the back to reflect the light? What do you think about painting it a different color, something more reflective maybe?
post #7 of (permalink) Old 08-14-2004, 08:13 PM
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Re: dashlights

I read a post at CK5 from a guy who painted it with the chrome paint. I don't think he noticed any real difference either.

The dash uses those little slots to let the light in... maybe they could be opened a little with some care? No tellin'.... I'll prolly just go with the LED and try to pump in more light.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 08-29-2004, 06:55 PM
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Re: dashlights

I just put in the LED lights tonight, and here's what I learned.

1. The website told me I needed 6 lights, but I actually ended up needing 8. I just replace 2 burnt out ones with new regular ones, and the rest with the LED.

2. I tried LED's for the turn signal lights and it did not work. The system doesn't like them for some reason, so I went with regular bulbs.

3. Changing the bulbs was a real PITA. I ended up having to pull off the dash bezel, and the gauge cluster. To get the cluster out far enough, I had to detach the speedo cable. I had to pull the stereo out to reach behind the gauges to get at it. There was no way I could reach up under the dash to get to the lights.

4. After all was said and done, I closed the garage door and shut off the lights. The gauges are brighter now, but I don't think the LED is any brighter than a standard bulb would be. The LEDs will probably last longer though.

Anyways, sorry for the long post, I just wanted to pass this along to everybody since dash lights are something everybody has.

[img]images/graemlins/laugh.gif[/img]
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 08-29-2004, 09:35 PM
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Re: dashlights

Cool, thank you for the update on those. Maybe the website said six bulbs needed was because they knew LEDs wouldn't work with the turn signals. Probably has something to do with the fact that they are intermitant.

I was sceptical about reaching up there myself. I've had three of these trucks stripped down completly on the inside, down to the metal dash all the way across. I'd have taken the whole cluster out anyway just for the express purpose of cleaning it. A trick I've learned on the speedo, pop the hood, and work a little slack up and push it in to the cab. You can then pull it out a little further.
You should try this on a 77 or older, they've got mechanical oil preasure gauges, there's a steel hard line to contend with in addition to the rest of the crap. [img]images/graemlins/cussing.gif[/img]

Oh...did you buy the single LEDs or the quad LEDs?
post #10 of (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 02:02 AM
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Re: dashlights

Yeah, thanks for the update! I'm curious to know if you got the quads or singles myself.

I can get to most of my dash lights from the back, but I'm pretty thin... long &amp; lanky. The only one that gave me trouble was the top one... I had to go through the front.
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