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Old 05-06-2020, 11:59 PM   #1
bdtutton
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Default Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

Is there a way to backlight the speedometer and/or gas gauge? When I turn on the dash light it is distracting because it reflects off the windows at night and is even worse if it is raining. Does anyone have any good ideas that would make these gauges more useful at night?
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Old 05-07-2020, 12:55 AM   #2
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

It would be kinda hard to back light the gas gauge as it is screwed into the tank. You might be able to install a bulb behind the face above the speed indicator so it could be illuminated. For checking the gas, maybe a flashlight would work to check. Are you saying in the rain the gauges are fogging up?
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Old 05-07-2020, 01:58 AM   #3
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

i turned the light off when i didn't need it. Put red cellophane over the bulb helped a bit. Not backlit but not as distracting.
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Old 05-07-2020, 03:47 AM   #4
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

I just turn the light on when I need it.
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Old 05-07-2020, 06:29 AM   #5
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

If you are running 6 volts, maybe a 12v dash light bulb will reduce brightness and strong reflection.
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Old 05-07-2020, 08:00 AM   #6
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Do you have the cover over the bulb--- I drive a lot at night, don't notice any dash light reflection on other places, mine is a 31 with light up behind dash rail, all original parts
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Old 05-07-2020, 08:31 AM   #7
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

You could drop a flashlight in the gas tank although I wouldn’t recommend it.
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Old 05-07-2020, 08:55 AM   #8
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Originally Posted by bdtutton View Post
Is there a way to backlight the speedometer and/or gas gauge? When I turn on the dash light it is distracting because it reflects off the windows at night and is even worse if it is raining. Does anyone have any good ideas that would make these gauges more useful at night?
Is the Instrument Panel chrome plated, -or Butler finished? Also, do you have the correct 3cp bulb??
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Old 05-07-2020, 07:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Originally Posted by Steves46 View Post
If you are running 6 volts, maybe a 12v dash light bulb will reduce brightness and strong reflection.
This is what I do. Works great!

You will think it is too dim at first, but once your eyes adjust to it, you can see the instruments just fine.
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Old 05-07-2020, 08:49 PM   #10
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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This is what I do. Works great!

You will think it is too dim at first, but once your eyes adjust to it, you can see the instruments just fine.
I agree with Jim, have been doing this for years. A #67 12 volt bulb works just fine.
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Old 05-07-2020, 09:54 PM   #11
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

I would like to get a LED bulb so it would get so hot.
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Old 05-08-2020, 09:02 AM   #12
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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I would like to get a LED bulb so it would get so hot.
LED bulbs come in bright, brighter and nuclear. Use the #67, it won't get very hot at 6V.

No bulb will get hot unless you leave it on all the time. Turn it back off after you check your gauges.

Last edited by Badpuppy; 05-08-2020 at 09:08 AM.
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Old 05-08-2020, 09:30 AM   #13
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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I would like to get a LED bulb so it would get so hot.
If you use a #67 12 volt, 3 cp tail light bulb in the instrument light on a 6 volt car, it will not get hot. You can leave it on all the time at night and not burn your fingers turning it off. It gives a nice glow on the instruments.

If you have converted your car to 12 volts (), then you use a 24 volt 3 cp tail light bulb in there, bulb number 1251, to get the same soft glow. They are kind of hard to find. Try ordering from your local NAPA, or order online.
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Old 05-08-2020, 03:12 PM   #14
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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If you have converted your car to 12 volts (), then you use a 24 volt 3 cp tail light bulb in there, bulb number 1251, to get the same soft glow. They are kind of hard to find. Try ordering from your local NAPA, or order online.

I am running 12V and I tried the 24V bulb you suggested some time ago. Total waste of time as that bulb barely made the filament even glow!



Instead, I replaced it with a 12V LED bulb which works great with no heat.
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Old 05-08-2020, 03:20 PM   #15
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

I guess it may depend on the style of dash light, the '28-29 or the '30-31. I use a 'soft warm' LED in my '30 and it works fine. I imagine if you didn't have the cover on it, it may be a different story. As mngreen said, no heat.
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Old 05-08-2020, 04:49 PM   #16
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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I am running 12V and I tried the 24V bulb you suggested some time ago. Total waste of time as that bulb barely made the filament even glow!



Instead, I replaced it with a 12V LED bulb which works great with no heat.
Sorry to hear that. It works well in my car.

I will admit, it takes a few minutes to get used to the dim light on the instruments.

Maybe your electrical connection or ground was not really good. LEDs take much less current so are less impacted by a bad connection.
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Old 05-08-2020, 05:07 PM   #17
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

No bad ground or bad connection---the incandescent 12V bulb that I originally had in there burned bright and HOT (for the last 40 years).


12V LED bulb now burns bright and COOL!


24V bulb
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Old 05-08-2020, 08:50 PM   #18
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Originally Posted by Kurt in NJ View Post
Do you have the cover over the bulb--- I drive a lot at night, don't notice any dash light reflection on other places, mine is a 31 with light up behind dash rail, all original parts
My IP light also has a shroud covering the bulb with only a opening facing down... no light upward to reflect off of the windshield.

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Old 05-09-2020, 10:07 PM   #19
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Originally Posted by Badpuppy View Post
LED bulbs come in bright, brighter and nuclear. Use the #67, it won't get very hot at 6V.

No bulb will get hot unless you leave it on all the time. Turn it back off after you check your gauges.
Haha. Reminds me of the first time i went to turn off the dash light & realized the cover was very hot. I think the cover fell off which was really annoying..

Anyway. If people find LEDs are too bright, i find colouring them in with a 'sharpy' (felt tip pen in my country) reduces the brightness quite well. Add extra layers of ink if you need it duller.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim/GA View Post
If you use a #67 12 volt, 3 cp tail light bulb in the instrument light on a 6 volt car, it will not get hot. You can leave it on all the time at night and not burn your fingers turning it off. It gives a nice glow on the instruments.
Also good idea.
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Old 05-10-2020, 12:05 AM   #20
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Default Re: Lighting for speedometer and gas gauge

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Instead, I replaced it with a 12V LED bulb which works great with no heat.
Which LED bulb did you use?
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