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Old 01-05-2012, 03:36 PM   #1
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Default Changing gauge cluster lighting

Has anyone attempted to change the color of the instrument cluster lighting on an NA miata? The stock green is just plain ugly, id like to change it to hyper white using LED's. Is this possible? or is the cluster itself green with white lights behind it?
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Old 01-05-2012, 03:47 PM   #2
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You'll hate the white because it will make night-driving more difficult. I'm surprised ca companies still use blue.
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Old 01-05-2012, 03:57 PM   #3
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My reasoning for white, is because it is bright. The green is too mellow, and Sometimes I have to drive very tired, and would prefer to have something a little brighter to help keep me alert.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:00 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by SupraTim View Post
My reasoning for white, is because it is bright. The green is too mellow, and Sometimes I have to drive very tired, and would prefer to have something a little brighter to help keep me alert.
That's not really how it works, but Y8s would probably know more about this than anyone else. The higher frequency light will command more of your vision from the road. The old Audi TT had red gauges and this helped night vision a lot...then again so did the HIV headlights.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:01 PM   #5
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What year? If it's an NA you'll probably have to sand the green off of the back of the gauge faces. Installing white LEDs will brighten up the green a lot. I have blue turned all the way down and it's still fairly bright.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:01 PM   #6
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Bright when you are tired makes you squint. That is bad.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:13 PM   #7
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Sometimes I drive when I'm really drunk and high on opiates and have a tough time seeing the road, I need brighter gauges.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:15 PM   #8
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Lightbulb

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Sometimes I drive when I'm really drunk and high on opiates and have a tough time seeing the road, I need brighter gauges.
Just wear Night Vision Goggles. Problems solved.
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Old 01-05-2012, 05:17 PM   #9
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Just wear Night Vision Goggles. Problems solved.
Maybe I can use an assisted night vision scope attached to an AR15 on the dash, while I'm driving, to zoom in on the road ahead?
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Old 01-05-2012, 05:25 PM   #10
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Shyeah bro. Guns, cars, and opiates. I smell an extreme sport cooking.
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Old 01-05-2012, 05:28 PM   #11
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its easy, here you go:
http://www.miataforumz.com/showthrea...=7075#post7075

just need the type 194 LEDs, or you can buy regular 194 bulbs with a different color bulb condom.
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Old 01-05-2012, 05:30 PM   #12
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Tried colored bulbs (non LED) color burned off.
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Old 01-05-2012, 05:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 85z28 View Post
Tried colored bulbs (non LED) color burned off.
bulbs suck anyway, use LEDs.
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Old 01-05-2012, 06:24 PM   #14
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I have white LED is mine, I just turn down the brightness on the dimmer when I get into darker area's. No problems seeing at night here. I used acetone to remove the green tint off the backside of the gauge faces. Be careful not to get it on the face side. I used masking tape on the front side to protect it and used very little acetone on a rag.
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Old 01-05-2012, 06:46 PM   #15
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I'm going red gauges on of these days. If things don't match it gets me crazy. Plus red matches the red dot m68 for my gun. 194leds and color sand with water and 2000 grit sand paper on the back of the gauges to get the green off I've heard works well and doesn't involve solvents.
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Old 01-05-2012, 07:07 PM   #16
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this is silly, you don't need to remove the green what-so-ever. It doesn't change the color or anything.
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Old 01-05-2012, 07:11 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 85z28 View Post
What year? If it's an NA you'll probably have to sand the green off of the back of the gauge faces. Installing white LEDs will brighten up the green a lot. I have blue turned all the way down and it's still fairly bright.
this is my understanding as well

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its easy, here you go:
http://www.miataforumz.com/showthrea...=7075#post7075

just need the type 194 LEDs, or you can buy regular 194 bulbs with a different color bulb condom.
is that na or nb?
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Old 01-05-2012, 07:12 PM   #18
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its an NB, 99 cluster without shaving any of the green off. You can see better pictures of my LEDs somewhere in the thread. Including the mylar which helps eliminate hotspots.

(its on the next page btw)
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Old 01-07-2012, 04:15 PM   #19
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Sanded the color off the back, covered the back with two layers of blue painters tape and removed the red covers from the bulbs.

I know blue is a "distraction", but with the dimmer about half way down, the blue allows me to use my peripherial vision quite well. It's not a stab-the-eye shade of blue. I did crank the dummer to full bright for the pic.






I wonder about using LEDs since they seem to not have such a great beam pattern (I had s p r e a d in there, but that word is not censored? WTF?) compared to regular bulbs. Does dimming still work well with LEDs?
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Changing gauge cluster lighting-32246200061_large.jpg  
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Old 01-07-2012, 04:53 PM   #20
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yes dimming still works pretty well with LEDs. I have no problems with light dispersion. There is some angled LEDs on ebay that seemed to do well also. Mylar seemed to solve any beam pattern issues, especially when you use wide lens SM LEDs like the ones at super bright.





As you can see, this is my only hotspot (at 1k rpm) and its currently not fixable as the LED is just slightly off the dispersion plastic on the gauge:
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