Dash Lights 70 71 Ranchero

Discussion in 'General Ranchero Help' started by 210eddiep, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    I know this is an old question around here, but how can I get my dash lights brighter? Do any of ya'll 70-71 owners have the same problem. I really don't want to drive around at night with a flashlight:eek:
     
  2. BillyC

    BillyC In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    379
    Location:
    franklin, tn
    Mine are very dim on71. Added lighted tach and oil, volt, and water gauge so I could monitor.
     
  3. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    I'd like to be able to see the speedo. Tickets are exspensive. I was hoping they made brighter bulbs that would fit. The switch turns 'em up and down allright, just doesnt get bright enough.
     
  4. bscottie

    bscottie In Maximum Overdrive GOLD MEMBER

    I have the same issue, read somewhere that a problem could be in the headlight switch but I haven't replaced mine yet since it hasn't been on the priority list, only bulbs I know for sure are the 194 and 168 with the 194 being brighter, I have those and it doesnt seem to help, if I get around to it I may just swap the switch to just see, 30-40 bucks wont hurt my motor fund too bad. may possibly end up adding some lights if all else fails and there is a place to add some
     
  5. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    Thats kinda what I was thinking. I'll get started trying to find a switch. This time of year money's tight. I have a couple of old switches I just hate to change them and it be the same way. Thanks!!
     
  6. Rustyboltz

    Rustyboltz In Second Gear

    Messages:
    32
    Location:
    Paola, Ks
    I have a 77 GT and had the same problem. My fix was to take the gauge bazel apart and take the blue bulb covers out from the dash lights. These blue covers are attached to the back of the gauge housing to limit the brightness of the dash lights.
    Now I have dash lights that I can see at night.

    That's my solution.
     
  7. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    I'll take a look at that. I dont think 70- 71 had a cover over the bulbs. I'll check one of xtra clusters right now. Thanks Rusty.

    Nope, no cover
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 22, 2012
  8. parts4me

    parts4me In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    2,410
    Location:
    Nebraska
    Swap out the 194 lights with 194 LED lights, 5 point. They will brighten it up amazingly. Plus they put out less heat saving the white back part of your cluster.
     
  9. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    I'll do that before I change the switch. Thank's parts4me
     
  10. BillyC

    BillyC In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    379
    Location:
    franklin, tn
    I put new headlight switch from MACS in my 71 couple months ago because when hit bright lights all lights went out. did not correct dim dash lights.
     
  11. ribald1

    ribald1 Banned PLATINUM MEMBER

    Messages:
    19,727
    Location:
    California
    This is how I solved the problem.
    Cobalt gauges.
     

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  12. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    Thats a bummer. It really sucks driving with those dim lights. Do you have any plans to fix it? Thanks BillyC
     
  13. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    I think I'd have to rig a new cluster to do that in the 71? Thanks ribald1
     
  14. parts4me

    parts4me In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    2,410
    Location:
    Nebraska
    Best gauge setup on the site.
     
  15. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    Thats for sure. You'd have no trouble seeing those.
     
  16. bscottie

    bscottie In Maximum Overdrive GOLD MEMBER

    I didn't know about the LEDS, may be worth trying.
     
  17. ribald1

    ribald1 Banned PLATINUM MEMBER

    Messages:
    19,727
    Location:
    California
    Thank you for the compliment.:)
     
  18. Bryan59EC

    Bryan59EC In Overdrive

    Messages:
    808
    Location:
    San Antonio, Texas
    I do not think the LED replacements are "dim-able" , so if they brighten it up
    they will be bright or off.

    Might consider removing the cluster, taking it apart, give it a good cleaning.

    Do not scrub it with a brillo pad, but let the parts soak so the 30yrs of
    film will come off.

    The paint on the inside of the housings is probably dirty and cannot reflect the light as intended.


    I had to do this on my Chev truck years ago--and went a step farther.
    Painted the housings a florescent red to change the lighting.
    All was good until I realized I could not see the needles on the gages.
    Had to take it all apart and paint the needles a florescent white.

    Anyway---some shopping around might get you some of that paint used for the inside of the clusters---Might even consider going to an automotive paint supply to see if they can match it.----it is kind of reflective paint
     
  19. 210eddiep

    210eddiep In Overdrive

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    boerne, texas
    Thanks Bryan. I'll take an old one apart first to see how that goes.
     
  20. parts4me

    parts4me In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    2,410
    Location:
    Nebraska
    No problem. I think gauge systems are the center of a vehicle and you have for sure done yours right. I wish I had the ranchero funds to upgrade to something like yours.
     

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