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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can anyone recommend an adhesive or cement for gluing a cut flexible rubber door seal together? I had to cut one (for a Honda) to get it off the car at a Pick-Your-Part (no longer sold) because I wasn't going to try removing the door hinge to get it out undamaged. It's cut at the bottom so water leaking in would be minimized but I would prefer to glue it back into a loop. I'm not sure what kind of adhesive works best to bond soft rubber to soft rubber (so, not to the door).

Also, for the Thunderbird's instrument cluster (1995 LX), can anyone tell me what is the part # for the light bulbs for illuminating the gauges at night? And how many are there? I have a spare gauge cluster that I haven't taken apart yet (white gauge face conversion coming) and I'd like to have those bulbs ready for replacement.
 

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Any Neoprene or Rubber glue will work.



Upgrade to LED while your in there. These are the ones that Matt and I have in the instrument cluster. They fit the dash, the door lights, the footwells, the gear shift light, the glove box light, the license plate lights, and the third brake light.

Buy three bags. They’re the most common light in the car.

Marsauto 194 LED Light Bulb 6000K 168 T10 2825 5SMD LED Replacement Bulbs for Car Dome Map Door Courtesy License Plate Lights (Pack of 10) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B079L3WBDN/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_tai_mj1SEbE813X74

Edit: There’s a newer version and they’re brighter - 400 lumen vs 300 lumen for the old style - but they’re quite a bit more expensive.

Marsauto 194 LED Bulbs T10 168 192 2825 W5W 400LM 6000K 7000K 2835SMD Chip LED Replacement Bulbs for 12V Car Interior Dome Map Door Courtesy Trunk License Plate Lights Xenon White 10Pcs Amazon.com: Marsauto 194 LED Bulbs T10 168 192 2825 W5W 400LM 6000K 7000K 2835SMD Chip LED Replacement Bulbs for 12V Car Interior Dome Map Door Courtesy Trunk License Plate Lights Xenon White 10Pcs: Automotive
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Ah, ok. I looked up the material, it's EPDM synthetic rubber, so there are a few choices for that stuff.

Upgrade to LED while your in there. These are the ones that Matt and I have in the instrument cluster. They fit the dash, the door lights, the footwells, the gear shift light, the glove box light, the license plate lights, and the third brake light.
I might use those for door lights and the gear shift light, but I agree with what someone else said in another thread of wanting less light in the cabin at night so that it's easier to see what's out in the dark outside. I would probably want the stock brightness of the original style (incandescent?) bulbs. So are those bulbs #194? #168? #192?

And I have read some reviews of LED bulbs failing after a few months? Not here, but other places online, reviews and whatever. Which is something I don't want to deal with with our fragile instrument cluster surrounds.
 
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Ah, ok. I looked up the material, it's EPDM synthetic rubber, so there are a few choices for that stuff.



I might use those for door lights and the gear shift light, but I agree with what someone else said in another thread of wanting less light in the cabin at night so that it's easier to see what's out in the dark outside. I would probably want the stock brightness of the original style (incandescent?) bulbs. So are those bulbs #194? #168? #192?

And I have read some reviews of LED bulbs failing after a few months? Not here, but other places online, reviews and whatever. Which is something I don't want to deal with with our fragile instrument cluster surrounds.
LED's are more reliable now then when they first came out. They're also still dimmable. I have no complaints about their brightness in the car at night.

The OEM Incandescent are #194 bulbs.
 

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Can always use the panel dimmer if you find them too bright, I think they’re fine, they even out the lighting if anything(surprising given that was what old LEDs didn’t do well). Longevity wise I’ve had mine in as long as Trunk Monkey, not one has failed

My only complaint is they’re still on the cold side of the spectrum, I’ve gotten used to it but they’re definitely not what I consider neutral pure white despite their description.
 

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Could you share the LED part number please? It looks great!
I used Superbrightleds.com

I only replaced the backlighting bulbs with LEDs, and not the warning lights. I also replaced the shifter light as well.

Part number for the speedometer and shifter is WLED-CWHP5 (194 cool white bulbs) QTY: 6

I also did the HVAC controls which were a pain, But the part number is 74-CWHP3 (74 cool white bubs) QTY: 2
 

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Just as a note - warm white will light the red and yellow better than cool white.

RwP
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I used Superbrightleds.com

I only replaced the backlighting bulbs with LEDs, and not the warning lights. I also replaced the shifter light as well.

Part number for the speedometer and shifter is WLED-CWHP5 (194 cool white bulbs) QTY: 6

I also did the HVAC controls which were a pain, But the part number is 74-CWHP3 (74 cool white bubs) QTY: 2
Are those bright enough? Or normal bright? I ask because the LEDs that Trunk Monkey recommends are either 300 lumens (old style) or 400 lumens (what he prefers). But I just looked up those WLED-CWHP5 LEDs and they are listed as 95 lumens. I guess the real question is how bright the stock lights are but that seems like a big gap in terms of brightivity. Brightessence. Brightness? I do like that they have the option of warm light LEDs, though. I assume that both LED options fit into the Thunderbird gauge cluster as easily as the stock bulbs.
 

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Are those bright enough? Or normal bright? I ask because the LEDs that Trunk Monkey recommends are either 300 lumens (old style) or 400 lumens (what he prefers). But I just looked up those WLED-CWHP5 LEDs and they are listed as 95 lumens. I guess the real question is how bright the stock lights are but that seems like a big gap in terms of brightivity. Brightessence. Brightness? I do like that they have the option of warm light LEDs, though. I assume that both LED options fit into the Thunderbird gauge cluster as easily as the stock bulbs.
I had W5W bulbs before switching to these LEDs, the LEDs are brighter and actually surprisingly more even(incandescents never lit up the needles this well)

Why do I use them? They don’t burn out, they don’t melt adjacent plastics they’re close to, they’re cheap and they’re brighter in most cases. I don’t like them everywhere though
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I had W5W bulbs before switching to these LEDs, the LEDs are brighter and actually surprisingly more even(incandescents never lit up the needles this well)

Why do I use them? They don’t burn out, they don’t melt adjacent plastics they’re close to, they’re cheap and they’re brighter in most cases. I don’t like them everywhere though
Ok, sounds like I should get a 10-pack of these WLED-CWHP5 LEDs then, based on the above recommendations. And warm white as well. Ya, I have noticed that the gauge needles are pretty bland at night.

I have the whiteface gauge kit and they recommend stripping the white paint off the needles and repainting (the underside?) with red or orange paint, and for better results to paint the needles white first, then orange (their paints). Anybody have any advice there?
 

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New needle paint helps a LOT due to the age of the current paint.

I've got some nice florescent orange on the needles for the cluster for my Dakota; it's made the needles "pop" with the LEDs (warm white, natch!) on.

If you really want blue (or green or yellow or whatever) backlights, and plan on going cool white (or green, yellow, amber, whatever) for the LEDs, you can also pick up florescent paints in those colors.

I got the paint I used from Hipo Garage - here's an article they have on painting the needles.

How to Paint Gauge Needles (hipoparts.com)

I admit I cheated a bit ... I put some masking tape under the needle, used a 50 ohm resistor to set the resistive gauges (fuel, oil pressure, temp) and a 12V regulated supply to power them, marked where the needle was, pulled it with a fork, painted it, let it dry, then put it back on.

For the tach I set a function generator up to generate a signal - the Dakota was 2x engine speed on the tach (2 pulses per revolution), so I did 3600 RPM ( 60 revolutions per second, so 120 Hz ) for my setting there.

Had a 1,000 RPM motor, so I could drive the Dakota's mechanical speedo at 60MPH (1,000 revolutions per mile on that speedometer).

For a MN12, you'd want to use a function generator for the speedometer also, at 8,000 pulses per mile. ( Math says 120 Hz for that would be 54 MPH; 240 Hz for 108MPH; other speeds proportionate. Divide the desired MPH by .45 to get the pulse speed.) This helps get the needles back on as calibrated as they would be.

(Perfect time to work on the gauge faces also. Here's an eBay listing for some white gauge faces, I THINK this will fit almost any MN12 out there. 1989-1996 Ford Thunderbird Dash Cluster White Face Gauges 89-96 | eBay (TRIPLECHECK. I can be wrong.)

RwP
 

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Are those bright enough? Or normal bright? I ask because the LEDs that Trunk Monkey recommends are either 300 lumens (old style) or 400 lumens (what he prefers). But I just looked up those WLED-CWHP5 LEDs and they are listed as 95 lumens. I guess the real question is how bright the stock lights are but that seems like a big gap in terms of brightivity. Brightessence. Brightness? I do like that they have the option of warm light LEDs, though. I assume that both LED options fit into the Thunderbird gauge cluster as easily as the stock bulbs.
Check the pic I posted above, that is full brightness. I currently have the dimmer set down a notch or 2 because it's too bright at night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Check the pic I posted above, that is full brightness. I currently have the dimmer set down a notch or 2 because it's too bright at night.
Ya, those LEDs are pretty bright. So are you saying that the LEDs you are using are the Marsauto 300 lumens (or upgrade 400 lumens) or are they the superbrightleds.com LEDs (WLED-CWHP5) that are 95 lumens?
 

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Ya, those LEDs are pretty bright. So are you saying that the LEDs you are using are the Marsauto 300 lumens (or upgrade 400 lumens) or are they the superbrightleds.com LEDs (WLED-CWHP5) that are 95 lumens?
They are the Superbrightleds.com (WLED-CWHP5) 95 lumens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
New needle paint helps a LOT due to the age of the current paint.

I've got some nice florescent orange on the needles for the cluster for my Dakota; it's made the needles "pop" with the LEDs (warm white, natch!) on.

If you really want blue (or green or yellow or whatever) backlights, and plan on going cool white (or green, yellow, amber, whatever) for the LEDs, you can also pick up florescent paints in those colors.

I got the paint I used from Hipo Garage - here's an article they have on painting the needles.

How to Paint Gauge Needles (hipoparts.com)
Ok, I read that painting guide. Very stupid question, now. I've read that some needles (depending on year of car) should be painted from below (underside of needles) vs. painting on top (as the factory did them). So, based on that tutorial, our needles are painted on the top? That makes life way easier for me, not in the mood to remove the needles to paint them from below. I've also read (from the site I ordered my white gauge faces from) that it's better to paint the needles white first, then florescent orange or red. I'm thinking orange by itself, though, if these needles have the paint on top.

(Perfect time to work on the gauge faces also. Here's an eBay listing for some white gauge faces, I THINK this will fit almost any MN12 out there. 1989-1996 Ford Thunderbird Dash Cluster White Face Gauges 89-96 | eBay (TRIPLECHECK. I can be wrong.)
Question about the white face gauge overlays (if you have applied them onto your gauges), does the near-useless "check gauges" warning light on the lower right part of the tach shine through the white part of the overlay? I was thinking maybe I should cut a little square out for that but my thinking is these guys (including the place that sells the overlays you linked to) can't possibly have done so much work to make the overlays work with the lighting for the speedo and tach numbers and not have accounted for that warning light. My overlays are from WhiteGauges.net but I assume they're made the same way. I just don't want to remove some functionality of the gauge because the overlay is too thick for the light to get through.
 
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