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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
When I bought this 1970 142S the instrument cluster was a bit of a mess. Clearly slammed into the space where a rally gauge set one resided it was not chosen for how good it looked nor how well it functioned.

I've been buying eBay lots of AS-IS clusters finding bits and bobs to assemble what I wanted.

The real guts!

speedo_apart.jpeg

These are really marvellous things to work on, steel, brass, aluminium. They are not really so much delicate, but they do need a steady hand and decent eyesight, which my ageing eyes are failing at. Ultimately this one was rejected because the numbers on the odometer were too yellowed. A recent lot arrived with a roughly treated but otherwise internally great shape one AND low miles!

cluster_lenses.jpg

Here are a set of lenses from what appears to be a flood-damaged cluster. They'll be saved but not used. (I just love the blue acrylic Volvo used for the High Beams!)

I spent several weeks going through the gauges, many didn't work, a few were cosmetically damaged. A monetary test with a weak 9V battery let me find the ones that at least responded.

NEVER ever subject these bimetallic gauges to a full 12VDC, you are likely to damage them or even destroy them.

For these gauges to function they need several things.

1. A positive voltage source
2. A properly functioning voltage stabilizer that gives a 5.1VDC average (VDO supplied by a Voltage Stabilizer is PN 684623) . It will have an input, output and a ground. Important note, it MUST be grounded or it will not regulate.
3. A functioning gauge
4. A variable ground, such as the fuel tank sender or the temperature sender.

A quick test connecting up to my car gave good results! We're going in the right direction.

I fully disassembled the plastic body (Sorry I didn't photograph the process here).

The clear lens had its years of improper cleaning polished out with a muslin buffing wheel and jewellers rouge. The result was a near factory fresh sheen and clarity. The black body was scrubbed with a formaldehyde-melamine-sodium bisulfite copolymer sponge (Magic Eraser). A plastic nourisher called Island Girl was then applied and allowed to soak for 15 minutes, then aggressively wiped off with a WypAll. A thorough washing in very hot water and an aggressive buffing with another WypAll. A final application of 303 Aerospace Protectant. This was next set in the sun to fully dry.

wire_nest.jpg

The connectors were a mess, loose and oxidized. They were physically cleaned with a steel pick, chemically with DeOx-It, then the same pick was used to gently bend the connectors to tighten their grip.

The pins on the main board of the gauge cluster were also physically cleaned using a Dremel tool and a Dremel 538-02 Nylon Brush (abrasive impregnated nylon) In fact all available contacts were brightened.

LEDs were used where applicable (I did not use one for the AMP light (2721 bulb) since voltage needs to move both directions on this circuit and there is always some current so an LED would glow dimly.)

Cluster_assembled.jpg

The completed refurbishment.

Cluster_installed.jpg

Installed! Yay! Now I have a temperature and gas gauge, all the lights work, I even have a dimmer, though I am still minus a knob for it.

One step at a time.

Eventually, I'll get to the top.
 

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Just a note on your rebuild.

The voltage stabilizer on my 1971 140 has a rated output of 5.1 volts, not 10 volts. I think the 10 volt stabilizer may have been used on the 1800 and / or Amazon. According to the parts manual, the 5.1 volt stabilizer was used on the 140 from the start of production up to the 1972 model year. The 1973 + instrument cluster which is significantly different than the 'up to 1972' cluster has a different stabilizer so it may have a different control voltage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Just a note on your rebuild.

The voltage stabilizer on my 1971 140 has a rated output of 5.1 volts, not 10 volts. I think the 10 volt stabilizer may have been used on the 1800 and / or Amazon. According to the parts manual, the 5.1 volt stabilizer was used on the 140 from the start of production up to the 1972 model year. The 1973 + instrument cluster which is significantly different than the 'up to 1972' cluster has a different stabilizer so it may have a different control voltage.
Thankyuh! I altered my post!
 

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Impressive work. When you state that you used LEDs where applicable, did that include the bulbs that light up the MPH section, the gauges and the mileage indicators, or just the AMP, turn signal, high beam and oil lights? If used on the MPH section, gauges and mileage indicators, did you get an improvement in terms of being able to see these better at night? These have always seem too dim to me, so it'd be great to have a way to improve this.

By the way, I see you're relatively close in Dublin, as I'm in San Leandro. I do have some extra clusters and one might include a dimmer knob, though I'd have to check to be sure. If you're interested and I do in fact have one, I'd be more than happy to pass it along to you gratis, so let me know. I drive a '72 164E and would love to see whatever it is that your cluster is in!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Impressive work. When you state that you used LEDs where applicable, did that include the bulbs that light up the MPH section, the gauges and the mileage indicators, or just the AMP, turn signal, high beam and oil lights? If used on the MPH section, gauges and mileage indicators, did you get an improvement in terms of being able to see these better at night? These have always seem too dim to me, so it'd be great to have a way to improve this.

By the way, I see you're relatively close in Dublin, as I'm in San Leandro. I do have some extra clusters and one might include a dimmer knob, though I'd have to check to be sure. If you're interested and I do in fact have one, I'd be more than happy to pass it along to you gratis, so let me know. I drive a '72 164E and would love to see whatever it is that your cluster is in!
Currently Directional, Brake, High beam, Oil and then the three ventilation controls. The speedo did have LEDs at first, but they failed very quickly and the vender wasn't very interested is replacing the bad stock they sent me. So for now they are stock incandescent bulbs. When I refurbished the cluster I did clip-out the green shades for these bulbs, so currently they illuminate pretty well.

Awesome you have a 164! It's been a while since I've seen one in person.

https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthread.php?592941-Introduction

You can see what my 142S looks like a bit down on the above introduction thread, it's really not worth driving out here to see :) I thank you for the offer of the knob, I have found an alternative that works well for something I rarely will ever touch.
 
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