White EL panel for gauge cluster modification. - Page 3 - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #41 of 189 (permalink) Old 10-31-2014, 08:11 AM
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I'm definitely in for one! I was just asking Terry about this literally last week...what timing. Thanks for working this out for us Bob!!

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post #42 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 03:24 AM Thread Starter
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Last day to make it on the list! This list and the steep discount that may just surprise us all will end at the end of day today!


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post #43 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 06:20 PM Thread Starter
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Last call... We've got 1hr and 45min left to get your name on the list for a great price!

Samples should be up soon, who's excited?


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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.

Last edited by surferpkt; 11-04-2014 at 11:30 AM.
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post #44 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 06:40 PM
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Pictures!

Ok, sorry for the carpet-bomb of pictures, but I tried to get every combination I could think of... I'm no photographer (I like the 'auto' button on my camera, all the other numbers scare me!) but I set the camera to a fixed setting, stuck it on a tripod, and tried not to move anything between shots. So hopefully this is a good comparison. I've never actually compared the white EL to the stock one side-by-side, so even I was actually impressed. Overall, it's brighter than the stock orange EL sheet, and about as bright as the same stock EL sheet after you scrape off the orange to make it blue. They're identical in size, except I added a tiny bit more EL to the right of the 'idiot light' area. It has essentially no effect, I added it when there was talk about extending the speedometer past '160' down into that area, and a little extra would have helped light up the extra numbers.

Here goes! I'm going to just post all the pictures, then edit the post to add descriptions. So you may see text pop up here and there if you're seeing this while I'm editing it.... (Or since it's 11pm, I might edit tomorrow..) By any means, if you want to see a combo that I missed, ask and I'll try. (Assuming I have the means to do it - I only had white LED rings left, and pretty much only have a couple sets of Harley needles)

1: 2 '2005' instrument clusters, stock faceplates, Harley Davidson 31mm needles, with white LED rings. They're both connected to the same power supply, set to 13.6v, headlight wire "on". (car will range from 13.3-14.4 I think?) Top panel has stock orange EL sheet, bottom panel has new white EL sheet.


2: Lit up with stock faceplates. Top = stock orange EL, bottom = white EL.


3: Not sure why I included this one, see 4.. LOL


4: This probably should have been #1.. Top = stock orange EL, bottom = white EL. It appears pink when turned off, because (I think) they make white by coating a blue sheet with a fluorescent coating, similar to how they make white LED's. The blue excites the coating, making white light. The only place I can see the tiniest bit of pink is under the "Lotus" logo in the center of the black faceplates. **But, the original / first revision aftermarket faceplates had the logo hole a bit too high, so the top of the circle doesn't fully light up..


5: Comparison of the stock orange EL and the white EL, both naked. I forgot to re-zero the needles on the bottom cluster.. You can see the numbers from the stock faceplate burned into the stock EL sheet from sunlight!


6: Stock orange EL on top, behind a black faceplate, white EL on bottom below a black faceplate. There is the slightest bit of a bluish tinge to the white EL; it's not BLUE by any means, but it's not as white as sunlight, halogen light, white LED light, etc.. It definitely looks white lighting up the numbers on a faceplate, but just don't want to give anyone incorrect info. Especially these days with the super-bright illumination in newer cars.


7: Setup for next picture - still stock orange EL on top, white EL on bottom. Just with a red faceplate with no Lotus logo. This is the one I usually have in my car, which is why I went with white needles instead of red. Red needles on red background = "I can't see how fast I'm going!" in the daytime... LOL


8: Above setup lit up. Again, orange on top, white on bottom.


9: Not really sure why I took this one.. It's really the setup for #11, white EL on top, scraped stock orange panel on bottom to make blue.


10: Stock orange EL on top, scraped orange EL on the bottom. If you scrape too deep, you get a dark patch........


11: White EL on top, scraped orange on the bottom. These are about the same brightness, at least to my eye when I was looking at them. The white looks brighter in the picture though. "The camera doesn't lie?" LOL


12: Black faceplates, top is white EL, bottom is scraped orange EL.


13: Another extra.. Same setup - white EL on top, but with red faceplate, scraped orange on bottom with black faceplate. I guess just showing that the red and black ones light up the same?


14: Hmm, getting repetitive.. (it's past my bedtime!) Black faceplates, white EL on top, scraped orange on bottom..


15: For another comparison.. OEM 'white' faceplates, white EL on top, scraped orange on the bottom..


16: Should be somewhat self-explanatory... Stock orange EL sheet on top, white EL sheet on bottom. Outer dimensions are the same, connector is the same, holes in same locations. I straightened out the 'bump' at the top because I didn't know if they could print it like that.. And as mentioned about 1/8" more material to the right of the 'idiot light' area on the speedometer side of things.


17: Back side of the panels... You can see how the conductors go around the whole panel for even distribution of power. When I cut up a 'universal' rectangle into this shape, I lost most of the conductor around the edges and it lit up patchy..


18: Last, and, well, maybe not least to some people? Comparison of size - stock on top, white on bottom. You can clearly see the extra bit on the right..


That about wraps it up for now! I'm getting some sleep.. If anyone isn't on high-speed internet, I apologize for melting your internet connection! I'll get back in touch with the EL company and make sure they're still on board with making them at the same cost they quoted me before.

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Mod list: Stainless shift knob.

Last edited by Riceburner98; 11-01-2014 at 07:06 PM. Reason: commenting pictures
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post #45 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 06:48 PM
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I'd be in at the number 20 position.

Thanks.
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post #46 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 07:05 PM Thread Starter
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White EL panel for gauge cluster modification.

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Last edited by surferpkt; 11-01-2014 at 08:46 PM.
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post #47 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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"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.
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post #48 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 09:01 PM
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hi Bob,

I know you have explained about the blueish white issue, but just wanna make sure one more time, does the white look like the white in 2008+ clusters or Evora clusters?
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post #49 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-01-2014, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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Though it has a slight bluish tinge it's white through the clusters. It's just not as uber white as the LED lit white needles are.


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"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.
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post #50 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 01:48 AM
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White EL panel for gauge cluster modification.

You also have to remember that Bobs camera always changes the white balance bluish. Look at his white led ring needles and you can tell. These needles look extra white in my car. Guessing the EL panel won't be that white, but definitely white. That's a hell of a lot better than what I have now! Might change the needles red though :/


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post #51 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 03:40 AM
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Unfortunately I've never actually seen a 2008 or Evora cluster in person at night, so I couldn't say 100% for sure.. Perhaps if Niral or Sugeray sees this, they may have some insight? The only one I've sent to someone went into Ray's cluster, I believe Niral did the install? My camera definitely does add a blue tinge to everything.

I also found the paper where I was documenting the testing when I first got the samples. Not sure if I put this info in the other thread or not. I used a light meter touching the surface of both panels, the OEM orange sheet measured 45 Lux, while the white EL sheet initially measured 100 Lux, and 76 Lux after running for 168 hours attached to a cluster. The cluster runs @ about 180v AC and 400HZ. I got it to 164 Lux using an external EL power supply @ 800 HZ. It can get brighter and whiter using an external EL power supply, but it also HUMS like crazy using standard drivers. (the panel is actually resonating at the AC frequency it's being driven at - the Lotus cluster EL power supply has a special voltage wave shape that breaks up the sound for less humming)

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Mod list: Stainless shift knob.
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post #52 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 03:46 AM
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Here's a shot that makes it look worse than it is.. I shifted the faceplate over so the needle LED holes were under some of the numbers. So these are the white needle LEDs (at 9k RPM and 140mph) vs. the rest of the panel being illuminated with the white EL.



Out of curiosity - has anyone done work on an '08 cluster? do they use an EL sheet in there or have they figured out how to get LEDs inside? And is there anything going on with the faceplate, like a tint to the back side that would alter the color to be more 'white'?

Oh, and for Coyne - I did try putting a red filter (from Amazon) in front of the EL, but it blocks too much light..

2005 Chrome Orange Elise
Mod list: Stainless shift knob.

Last edited by Riceburner98; 11-02-2014 at 03:51 AM.
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post #53 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 12:11 PM
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Since we're on the topic of EL panels and overlays.. Someone had asked what the replacement HVAC overlay looks like lit up by the OEM HVAC EL panel.

First the circuit board, for reference, if anyone feels the need to power it up outside the car.. I've marked the connections on the EL transformer (and connector) - if you give it between +5 and +14v, it will light up the HVAC panel. Be careful! The EL panel runs around 100v AC, so you can get zapped by touching the output pins!


So here is the OEM HVAC panel, after I had tried to peel off the original silver part.. It peeled off in sections, and I tried sticking it back on but it looked baaad. This is the 'bare' EL sheet, after peeling (the silver color stayed behind..)


This is the OEM faceplate stuck back on, and lit up..


This is with the black faceplate on top of the silver faceplate after it was stuck back on.. It's "ok", but one thing to note is the FAN icon is rotated from OEM vs. the black one, so it doesn't quite light up right.


And this is the black faceplate, with the silver faceplate peeled off..


For giggles, this is the black faceplate on top of the instrument cluster replacement white EL sheet..


Here is what the OEM EL sheet looks like after some elbow grease; scraping with an exacto and using "Goof Off" adhesive remover. The adhesive is VERY sticky and got all over me, turning me somewhat silver.. I got a bit carried away on the FAN icon, and took off the orange coating. Surprise, the whole thing (even the red) is actually blue EL.. You could carefully remove all the orange if you wanted to, and had enough patience..


And last, here is the scraped EL panel behind the black faceplate - note the FAN icon is now blue.. The red part of the temperature dial lights up pretty well, surprising because of the blue EL behind it. Whatever the graphic overlay people use to make the red segments really changes the color, without blocking too much light. The red is part of the printing on the overlay panel.


Aaaaand, one more. More Goof Off (this stuff smells terrible!) and more sticky goo than I could handle, and now the whole thing is blue...

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Mod list: Stainless shift knob.

Last edited by Riceburner98; 11-02-2014 at 02:04 PM.
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post #54 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 02:26 PM
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Riceburner--I did assemble the white EL for Ray (along with your ring LEDs, one of his cluster gauge/plexiglass designs, a white LCD and fixing the Lotus PCB interference/design issue). Unfortunately, I still haven't seen it lit up! I've asked him to send a pic so we can see how it looks. I've been very curious to see it as well.

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2006 Lotus Exige, Aspen White:
date purchased - March 2012
date married - Sept 15,2013
date wife found out about Lotus - Sept 14,2014
date wife sat in Lotus - Sept 2015

Mods:
'07+ MP62 Supercharger retrofit w/VF S2 tune + RLS IC/Tubes,Walbro 255 fuel pump,Stage 2 exhaust, '07 body,Odyssey battery,Gauge cluster refresh
Chuck Risen's audio/interior system + fully integrated British voice "Kate" giving the GPS directions
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post #55 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-02-2014, 03:11 PM
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Here are some pictures that Ray sent me (thanks Ray!) with some of his different cluster gauge designs (one white/one black). The Harley needles are off, showing Riceburner's LED rings I put in with white LEDs. The white LEDs and white EL seem to match pretty well to me....
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2011 Mini Cooper S - ardent red body/monaco white roof
2006 Lotus Exige, Aspen White:
date purchased - March 2012
date married - Sept 15,2013
date wife found out about Lotus - Sept 14,2014
date wife sat in Lotus - Sept 2015

Mods:
'07+ MP62 Supercharger retrofit w/VF S2 tune + RLS IC/Tubes,Walbro 255 fuel pump,Stage 2 exhaust, '07 body,Odyssey battery,Gauge cluster refresh
Chuck Risen's audio/interior system + fully integrated British voice "Kate" giving the GPS directions

Last edited by Niral_Xige06; 11-02-2014 at 03:16 PM.
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post #56 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 04:29 PM
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So if I get this correctly, using Sugrays black HVAC will give you a more red colored tint, if you scrap off some of the el behind? I just want to make sure if I do this it looks right.


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post #57 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 04:52 PM
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can I still sign up for the white EL lighting?
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post #58 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-03-2014, 05:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Riceburner98 View Post
Here's a shot that makes it look worse than it is.. I shifted the faceplate over so the needle LED holes were under some of the numbers. So these are the white needle LEDs (at 9k RPM and 140mph) vs. the rest of the panel being illuminated with the white EL.



Out of curiosity - has anyone done work on an '08 cluster? do they use an EL sheet in there or have they figured out how to get LEDs inside? And is there anything going on with the faceplate, like a tint to the back side that would alter the color to be more 'white'?

Oh, and for Coyne - I did try putting a red filter (from Amazon) in front of the EL, but it blocks too much light..
I've dismantled an 08+ cluster. The design is quite different.

They use white surface mount LEDs which are actually on the main PCB. The distance between the PCB to the faceplate is more to get the light to spread and there housing has a bunch of channels or walls to control the light...

2011 Mini Cooper S - ardent red body/monaco white roof
2006 Lotus Exige, Aspen White:
date purchased - March 2012
date married - Sept 15,2013
date wife found out about Lotus - Sept 14,2014
date wife sat in Lotus - Sept 2015

Mods:
'07+ MP62 Supercharger retrofit w/VF S2 tune + RLS IC/Tubes,Walbro 255 fuel pump,Stage 2 exhaust, '07 body,Odyssey battery,Gauge cluster refresh
Chuck Risen's audio/interior system + fully integrated British voice "Kate" giving the GPS directions
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post #59 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 06:06 AM Thread Starter
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White EL panel for gauge cluster modification.

White EL panel for gauge cluster modification.

1. Surferpkt(+2)

2. t955152(+4)

3. Niral_exige(+2)

4. 451

5. darkSol

6. xvdarkyvx

7. Skywagon

8. Lostpawn

9. Dephcon5

10. Jeff_r1

11. turbopun(pending sample)

12. zender(pending sample)

13. Nessal

14. OGcorey

15. Riceburner98

16. Coyne (Damn I want red)

17. Pegasixi

18. Kamsden

19. HERMANtheSMASHER

20. eclipse19

21. Donaldking (You were voted in!)

:::List Closed:::

"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.

Last edited by surferpkt; 11-04-2014 at 06:24 PM.
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post #60 of 189 (permalink) Old 11-04-2014, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
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White EL panel for gauge cluster modification.

Update! The final cost came in at well under the initial $100+/- a piece quoted! I'll be contacting everyone this week with payment information. You'll all be pleasantly surprised.


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"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.
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