[Instrument Cluster Modification] A brief guide to upgrading your needles and LCD - Page 5 - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
 4Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #81 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-05-2015, 09:04 AM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Darksol - the backlight voltage (when fully on, not dimmed) is around 5v to the LCD. It of course drops as you dim it.

-> Actually disregard that - I just measured one - with the stock orange LCD, I'm measuring 3.5v with the 'headlights' off, and 3.3v with them on but not dimmed. I could swear it was closer to 5v when I was using the white screen yesterday.. Just measured with NO LCD, and it's 12v on the illumination wires. -> Which means there's a current limiting resistor somewhere on the cluster PCB... Interesting.. That'd be why I'm getting different voltages with different colors...

In my case, I like the red backlight since that's what I'm using. But matching the white backlight of the numbers does have something going for it.. Red's better for night vision, right??

2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #82 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-05-2015, 09:35 AM
purveyor of lightness
 
darkSol's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Leawood, KS
Posts: 4,014
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riceburner98 View Post
Darksol - the backlight voltage (when fully on, not dimmed) is around 5v to the LCD. It of course drops as you dim it.

-> Actually disregard that - I just measured one - with the stock orange LCD, I'm measuring 3.5v with the 'headlights' off, and 3.3v with them on but not dimmed. I could swear it was closer to 5v when I was using the white screen yesterday.. Just measured with NO LCD, and it's 12v on the illumination wires. -> Which means there's a current limiting resistor somewhere on the cluster PCB... Interesting.. That'd be why I'm getting different voltages with different colors...

In my case, I like the red backlight since that's what I'm using. But matching the white backlight of the numbers does have something going for it.. Red's better for night vision, right??
Hmmm. 3.3v and not 5.0v?

When I get home I'll tie the backlight power to the 3.3v Netduino pin to see how the illumination changes. I can barely read the black on red text as it is at 5volts... so I might just end up using the white lcd which is PLENTY bright.

Just trying to get all my ducks in a row before tearing into this. I'll be fully removing my dash to replace some pieces with new CF and to also remove the passenger airbag. No need to do THAT teardown/reinstall all over again...

.
d.a..v...i....d

David Thomas Stewart - [email protected]
2005 Midnight Silver Lotus Elise (www.darksol.com)
388hp (342whp) BOE RevX 1676lbs.
darkSol is online now  
post #83 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-05-2015, 12:55 PM
Registered User
 
zender's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 268
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riceburner98 View Post
The pictures do seem to indicate that the gears are OK. One thing I did run across once - it's possible the pin isn't in exactly the right position - the bottom tip of it acts as a bearing against the bottom plastic case. If it's pressed in too far, or not far enough the big gear will rub against the case, or against the black gear. It's possible you just need to push the pin farther into the big white gear? When installed in the case, it should be just above the black gear, with the teeth engaged but not touching it's face.

When you completely un-plug the cluster, and plug it back in it does a reset - basically it will spin the stepper motor enough turns to cause a full counter-clockwise sweep of the needles. (there is a way to have it do a reset without unplugging - something with the key and the door ajar switch I think? I saw it here once..) So with the motor taken apart and the cluster plugged in, the little brown gear should do a few dozen (hundred?) revolutions thinking that it's spinning the needle around. If you rotate the (working) tachometer needle fully clockwise, you'll see it spin all the way back to zero when you plug the cluster in. (the clicking / crunching sound you normally hear is when the motor is trying to spin the needle counter-clockwise, but it's already fully rotated against its stop)

Without the motor case assembled and holding the shafts in perfect alignment, the gears may slip, but you should still see movement. If the tiny gear turns, then look at the big black gear, if that one turns, then it's probably the white gear with the pin rubbing. Nothing looks damaged, so there's still a good shot at getting it going as-is!
Cool, well I'll give that a shot and try the reset numerous times in different states and let you guys know. Thanks for the help Bob.
zender is offline  
 
post #84 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-06-2015, 02:59 AM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkSol View Post
Hmmm. 3.3v and not 5.0v? ..
So I'd forgotten that I'd started to trace out the backlight circuit a while ago.. I never completed it (there is a TON of circuitry for something so simple!) but the basics are that the + side of the LCD backlight more or less goes directly to +12v. I forgot that the LCD does not dim with the EL or HVAC backlight, only a tiny bit when the headlights are turned on.

(To be technically correct, it's really car voltage -.8v when headlights are OFF, car voltage -.85v when headlights are on.. (must be through a diode?) So if the car's electrical system is really 13.6v, the backlight power will be 12.75v)

The - side of the backlight goes through essentially 330 ohm + 22 ohm resistors, and a transistor. These are (3) 1,000 ohm 1206 resistors to the lower left of the tachometer needle motor, and a 22 ohm 0805 resistor directly to the lower left of the motor. The transistor is next to the 0805 resistor. It appears that the OEM orange screen had 0 ohm resistors on it, so Lotus (well, the gauge manufacturer) chose to put the LED resistors on their board, maybe so they could change them if needed easier than having the LCD place do it.

Soooo.... The LCD itself has a built-in resistor since it's backlight is intended to run directly on 5v. The red-on-black LCD I have here uses a 330 ohm resistor. So when plugged into the Lotus cluster, it essentially becomes a 682 ohm resistor instead. I'm not sure what resistor the white LCD uses (they're in the mail..) but you can see it on the back side of the screen - should be R8, near where the LED pins are soldered. The red screen I have here is running @ 4.27v at the pins with all the resistors in place, and the LED itself is getting 1.675v. If I short out the 330 ohm resistors on the Lotus board, that only goes up to 1.680v, so not much change.

If your LCD screen has a 330 ohm resistor on the back of it, you can essentially short it out since the Lotus cluster board has 352 ohms already. BUT, all that said, it might not make much difference unless the screen is really drawing some current. (these things use a single LED though, so not likely..) You could potentially replace the red LED for a brighter one (or a bunch of surface mount ones?), but in my case anyway the red backlight in my car is plenty bright at night.. Since it doesn't dim, you don't want it 'too' bright. Just something to think about.

Whew! Lots of info for 6:30am! LOL

2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
post #85 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-08-2015, 03:09 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: SoCal/NorCal
Posts: 335
Ok. I think I've got everything except new needles now. Does anyone know the specs on the needles (I really just need to know the bore size I suppose) or are most needles the same and any will work? Can I just pick some needles that are ~27mm and use them?

I kinda like the white ones below, anyone know the source?

allectrebek is offline  
post #86 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-08-2015, 03:30 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Bay Area, CA
Posts: 2,337
Quote:
Originally Posted by swbooking View Post
Ok. I think I've got everything except new needles now. Does anyone know the specs on the needles (I really just need to know the bore size I suppose) or are most needles the same and any will work? Can I just pick some needles that are ~27mm and use them?

I kinda like the white ones below, anyone know the source?



Nope. It's pretty specific. You need to get one that is shallow enough and not too long The bore size is around 0.90
mm to 0.95mm. Mine was a hair over 0.95.
Nessal is offline  
post #87 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-08-2015, 04:14 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: SoCal/NorCal
Posts: 335
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nessal View Post
Nope. It's pretty specific. You need to get one that is shallow enough and not too long The bore size is around 0.90
mm to 0.95mm. Mine was a hair over 0.95.
Figured they were specific. Thanks for the size!
allectrebek is offline  
post #88 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-08-2015, 04:27 PM
Arch. Project Manager
 
surferpkt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Sarasota, FL.
Posts: 1,090
The Harley needles can have their shaft trimmed down and bored out to the proper size hole using a micro drill bit set.


Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App

"This car is more fun than the entire french air force crashing into a firework factory." - Jeremy Clarkson

2005 BRP ELISE:
Sport Pack, Hard Top, Black Mesh Grills, Cup Air Box, TitanQR, Difflow diffuser, Larini Club Sport Exaust, Rear Panel Delete, RTD Brace w/Nitron Toe Pins, Mono-ball bushings, PRORAD, Reverie CF Side Scoops & CF Splitter, CF door pulls, Odyssey PC680. Filled seams including a custom one piece front paint protection film.
surferpkt is offline  
post #89 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-10-2015, 02:46 PM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Some more pictures of different LCD screens

Here's a shot from today with a white-on-black odometer LCD. There seems to be a missing / bright pixel next to the '9' on the odometer; I need to pull it apart and see if I somehow caused that or if it's just a bad screen. This is an early 'Sugeray' black speedometer faceplate (the Lotus logo is a bit high on the EL sheet, so the top edge is dark..), with white LED rings, Harley needles and the white EL sheet.



I did a blue-on-black LCD screen too, and proved that my Samsung Galaxy camera, my Canon PowerShot G7 camera and my wife's iPhone5 (and iPad mini) are all REALLY sensitive to blue... The black background of the LCD looks really blue, and the blue text looks pretty much white. It has got to be something to do with how they turn black and white sensors by covering them with an RGGB (Bayer) filter.. Maybe the blue of the filter just lets too much through? Or maybe the blue is close to the wavelength of the green filters (there's 2x as many) and picks up extra; but that would make it too green.. I dunno... Anyway, the LCD screen looks almost right with the flash on in the 2nd picture.

Here it is.. I was trying the scraped OEM EL sheet to see if the blue worked with the LCD screen.. The OEM sheet is a little too blue-green for my liking. Probably better with white EL.





2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
post #90 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-11-2015, 03:56 PM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Testing an orange-on-black LCD.. Black speedo faceplate, white needle LEDs, stock 'orange' EL (er, not very orange without the orange tint of the OEM speedo faceplate). It's actually pretty orange, but of course the camera doesn't do nice things to color lately...

I might build some orange needle LED rings tomorrow and see what that looks like.


2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
post #91 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-12-2015, 01:59 AM
Registered User
 
KWYK's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: AUSTRALIA
Posts: 504
stop teasing Bob and mod my '05 dash cluster for me,could be the start of a new business venture for you

05' EXIGE , SAFFRON YELLOW
KWYK is offline  
post #92 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-13-2015, 04:58 PM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Ok.... One more picture. The orange LED needle rings look GREAT with the Harley needles.. They wash out with any front (sun) lighting and turn white since that's what they're painted on the bottom, but in the dark they look very nice.

This is black faceplate, white EL sheet, orange-on-black LCD screen, and orange LED needle rings with Harley Davidson needles.


2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
post #93 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-13-2015, 05:56 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Bay Area, CA
Posts: 2,337
Looks really good!
Nessal is offline  
post #94 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-23-2015, 01:52 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Belgium
Posts: 236
Here is my new LCD, pic is not that good though... (with a special thanks to Riceburner98).
Attached Images
 

2006 Elise Magnetic Blue | BOE REV300tvs SC kit with 85mm pulley, ITG airbox, Exedy Sport Clutch, 2bular Headers, 2bular Silenced Decat, 2bular 8x22 Oval Tip Exhaust, Black Exige Rear Diffuser, Black Forged 7spoke wheels, BOE Uprated Rear Engine Mount, Exige V6 Mirror Plinths, etc... (SOLD)
stekki is offline  
post #95 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-23-2015, 12:33 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1,310
That's cool, thanks for the pic!

Yellow looks really great.

2006 Black Exige
Chimera R.B.S./ITB airfilter/Composite Worx
Kimgt is offline  
post #96 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-24-2015, 04:14 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 68
Garage
Pics of mine, before and after

Just had mine done. Love it. Name:  IMG_0525.jpg
Views: 630
Size:  93.9 KB

Name:  IMG_0549.jpg
Views: 884
Size:  84.3 KB

Name:  IMG_0511.jpg
Views: 578
Size:  59.6 KB

Name:  IMG_0512.jpg
Views: 576
Size:  57.2 KB

Name:  IMG_0524.jpg
Views: 951
Size:  95.6 KB
johnpatrickcrumley is offline  
post #97 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-24-2015, 04:36 PM
Registered User
 
Riceburner98's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Natick, MA
Posts: 542
Wow that's a high idle!

Looks incredible..

2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
Riceburner98 is offline  
post #98 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-24-2015, 10:28 PM
shay2nak
 
shay2nak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Calipornia
Posts: 24,802
I do like the black & blue corner display. Unfortunately, my eyes cannot really focus on blue lights & signs for some reason. ...and I do like the white stock gauges.

** save ~10 lbs gain 1 hp ** EQ: Y=(190*X) / (1984-X) where Y is (HP) and X is (lbs)

'07 Lotus Exige S310


WTC 2
shay2nak is offline  
post #99 of 181 (permalink) Old 01-25-2015, 06:55 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 68
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by Riceburner98 View Post
Wow that's a high idle!

Looks incredible..
Yeah, I was just chilling in my garage. My neighbor's love it! Haha. Nahhh, the dam thing it stuck. Going to have to take it apart and fix that...
johnpatrickcrumley is offline  
post #100 of 181 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 08:03 AM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Narragansett RI
Posts: 92
I'm sure I missed it in one of these threads, but where are people sourcing these updated speedo faceplates?
OddManOut is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

  LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community > Lotus Discussions > Electrical

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in











Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome