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How To: DIY Guage Colour Change.

Discussion in 'Interior / Audio / Electronics DIY How-To's' started by Grafix Ink., Aug 29, 2004.



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  1. Grafix Ink.

    Grafix Ink. New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    DIY" Guage Colour Change

    DIY Guage Colour Change.... 96-98 Civic

    hey all i was asked a couple of times in how to do this.
    it was posted before i beleive a but doesn't hurt to do it again....

    it is easler to buy replacement leds as they are brighter, but the colour choice is limited, by doing this you have enddless possibilities...

    Materials Needed:
    Screw Driver
    *Bulb Paint (not glass paint) in your choice of colour
    Time

    Other Note:
    The 96-98 Dash takes 2 #74 Bulbs and 2 #194 Bulbs

    [​IMG][​IMG]


    - First step is to remove the dash trim below the steering wheel, it is not a step that you have to do but it does make it easier to remove the clips which hold the guage in place after. there are two screws holding
    the dash trim closer to the floor and i believe a couple more up to after that it will pop out.

    - after that you have to remove the two screws holding the black guage trim in place... they are on top of the guages, there are alos to clips on the bottom which you have to unclip. be very careful as they are easily brocken and can be a pain to remove.
    [​IMG]

    - after you have removed the trim there will be 4 screws holding the guage in place one in each corner, remove them and put aside.
    [​IMG]

    - take out the cluster, be careful to to pull to hard as there are electronics honding them... duh... lol also be careful with the trim around the steering whell, the plexiglass on the guage is smooth and can cut into your trim on the fcar, so don't rest it ontop of your steering wheel.

    - after you have pulled it out, unplug all of the electronics. and in the house you go.

    - there are 4 bulbs, 2 #74 Bulbs and 2 #194 Bulbs, replace those bulbs with you aftermarket bulb. (the honda ones will come out and they'll have blue bulb condoms on them to make the bulbs appear more white instead of amber) the other bulbs you will have to take off, take off the honda condoms then paint them with your *bulb paint. then let dry over night.
    [​IMG]

    - make sure you use bulb paint, simple window paint will not work as these bulbs get extremely hot. i tried using window tint and the paint simply crystalized, burned, then smoked the lights... smoke everywhere... so make sure you find bulb paint at your performance store to avoid this problem.

    - after bulbs have dried put them back into the guage. then reverse the steps in putting the guages back in.

    - so replug wiring, screw in the four guage screws, then replace the guage trim, clip back in, then screw the two screws, then replace dash trimming.

    - the end result...
    [​IMG]

    and yes the center bulb is out i know that... lol

    hope this helped a couple people out...

     

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    Last edited: Nov 30, 2004
  2. lkailburn

    lkailburn New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    got a bad bulb at the top of the cluster?

    what brand bulb paint did you use?
     
  3. Grafix Ink.

    Grafix Ink. New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    not a bad bulb it is just loose, i replaced it so many times that i forgot to expand the hbulb wireing to get a secure fit... i'm just lazy... i don't remember the brand for the paint, i did this over about 6 months ago... but if you go to your locaal custom performance place they should have it or know where to get it...
     
  4. Azoodica

    Azoodica New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    what cluster is that and where'd you get it?
     
  5. Grafix Ink.

    Grafix Ink. New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    are you serious? did you read n e thing? oem... its the factory guage cluster....
     
  6. pradaG

    pradaG New Member 5+ Year Member

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    i dont get how come your gauge needle is orange..
     
  7. 96BlackCivicHB

    96BlackCivicHB New Member 5+ Year Member

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    thats a jdm cluster, its in km/h instead of mph
     
  8. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    srry for bringing back a really old thread BUT I really want to do this. Now Ive went to Advanced Auto and looked for BULB Paint and they didnt have any. I work in a hardware store part time and we also sell spray paint but again its basic spray paint non of them are for painting light bulbs. Exactly what type or what paint can I use to paint the bulbs?
     
  9. Machinehead115

    Machinehead115 Team Four Door Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    go to a craft store and look for glass paint, i used Krylon...
     
  10. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    We sell this at my job so i can get a really good price or get it marked off for free but will this paint work?
    [​IMG]

    Also in Advanced they have like 1 package (includes 2 bulbs) of some sylvania bulbs but the rest are like basic OEM ones. In that case whats the point in buying bulbs and not just painting the ones i already got in the cluster?
     
  11. Machinehead115

    Machinehead115 Team Four Door Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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  12. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    did u put too many coats of paint on the stock ones that not enough light was able to pass through?
    BTW 2 LIGHT coats should be enough right?
     
  13. Machinehead115

    Machinehead115 Team Four Door Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    don't know, it could have been a combination of things... ya 2 should be fine, though its always good to do not enough then too much ;)
     
  14. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    Tommorow i got work but i think I do remember reading on the back of the bottle above that it can be used for glass products. Im just thinking if this is indeed correct then light might not be able to pass through it
     
  15. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    I did it.But didnt have 1 extra bulb to put behind the fuel/temp gauge for auto
    either way some of the tachometer isnt being lited by the bulbs for example its only in the color up to 3 rpm

    Also the color is the gayest light blue ive ever seen in my life. Its almost neon light blue. I was hoping for dark blue

    I used this paint and did 2 light coats:
    [​IMG]

    Im afraid if i take them out to repaint them/put more layers either it wont change anything or it they will emit less light
     
  16. civicexcoupeman

    civicexcoupeman Evil Monkey FTW Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    also in other write ups they say to use Testors paint but never mention the transparent paint. They use the normal paint in the write up. Weird how a good amount of light can pass through the bulbs
    heres a link to the other write up i mentioned http://www.honda-tech.com/zerothread?id=1054824

    Also as u see in that write up they say paint onto the bulbs not paint the bulb condoms. I painted directly on to the bulbs when i did it
     
  17. Grafix Ink.

    Grafix Ink. New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member 10+ Year Member

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    imo don use glass paint, the bulbs actually get hella hot... look for bulb paint wich is made to withstand the temperatures.
    if you use glass paint prepare to re-paint them over and over again
     
  18. MidnightCivicEX

    MidnightCivicEX EK Ferio WIP Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    hmmm... your cluster has bulbs behind the cluster.. mine has bulbs shining down from above, almost as if they are in front of the cluster pointing down and towards it... its a 97 Civic EX...
     
  19. squidmaster

    squidmaster pen0r squid Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    you canbuy blue/red/green bulbs.

    anyways
    i went out today and got some blue 194s and I went to install them, but the top right screw stripped! WTF!!!!
    what can I do now>>>!>??!?!?!?
     
  20. civic402Lx

    civic402Lx New Member Registered VIP 5+ Year Member

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    autolumination.com sells them..u can get them in led or colored bulb..colored bulb will fade over time..led u need to get the wide angle to cover all area..the standard #74 led point straight out..not enough coverage imo..
     


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