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85 dash still not working



Ok I tried I read and followed what Gordon Killebrew says to do to fix my 85 dash. It doesn't seem to have helped! I am going to try and pick up some different connectors cause I just used what I had on hand. If that doesn't help what do I do? They work great sometimes, and now actually all light up since there are 4 bulbs instead of 3! I just want them to work that nice all of the time.
I'm going through the same problems with my 84 cluster.

My cluster was working, but the display was intermintent.

I had to replace all the bulbs on mine. $36.00 + another 5 for the type 74 bulbs.

I've cleaned all the contacts replaced all the bulbs and will be reassembling it this weekend.

I'll let you know if I have any luck.

You might want to talk to vigman. He does reconditioning on clusters.

I found when I yanked mine I cleaned all the connectors and checked out the wires (cracks,severes) then I looked at those fancy four little halogen bulbs and thought nothing of em so I continued my journey but when I put it all back together Bang NO LIGHT I ended up having to replace those halogens which arent cheap and it worked sometimes your problem isnt as tech nutty as you think (like me spending 4 hours scracthing my head ""Duh why wont my light work"

AND DONT TOUCH THEM WITH YOUR HANDS!!!!! the grease boils on them and they blow I used a surgical needle nose tool for them straight out of the bag
First things first

The 883 bulbs are VERY fragile.. and the older they get the more brittle the filament gets. Just a little tap and POOF its gone.

Take a known 12 volt source and remove the sockets from the back of the cluster, using clip leads.. light the lights. If they work wipe em down with alcohol ( and not Jack Daniels..you dash will be out of focus for days).

Check the quality of the connectors on the sockets... put it back together making sure the Molex connector between the top & bottom os clean.

If it still doesn't light.. your power supply ( daughter board on the back) could be dead.

The clue there..is if the lights are out...but looking at an angle you see the instruments working..It;s bulbs or connections.

If the gauges are putting out garbage..or nothing..the power supply is toast.

Glad to see you made it in Mike! People need your expertise on things like this. :upthumbs

_ken :w
They work

They work fine most of the time. I think it has to be the ground connection which I will work on next week. Its one of those hit a bump and they go out and hit the next bump and they come back on! I replaced one bulb that was missing and another just cause I was already there. Thanks for your help.
I'm betting the internal Molex

Over 75% of the time the last pins get overheated.. the spring loses tension.. the resistance increases.. and woof.. no lights.

Is the connector ( female ) top turing yellow or brown?

Sometimes the bottom pins get heated up so bad the solder heats and recools... ergo cold joint, bad connection.

I tried the link. This is exactly what I needed! I can now take care of most if not all of the problems with my digital display.

mine had the blinking lites too. didnt dim or briten anymore, stayed about medium all the time. Just to save messing around I bought the whole dash rebuilt unit from Corvette Cluster Svc in Indiana. Everythings working fine now. Only $195 delivered. Dealer wanted $115 to just change the halogen bulbs.
I think my total outlay to repair it myself was $22, and that included purchasing a soldering pen and solder, as well as replacement bulbs (used two 194s in the upper two sockets...lower heat and just a bit dimmer). Most places want a minimum of one hours labor ($75 in some places) just to look at your problem. If you are even mildly electronically/mechanically inclined, it pays to try these simple repairs yourself. Alot of these places prey on Vette owners that don't want to try it themselves.
I'm finding that as soon as I mention "Vette" they either don't want to look at it or the price seems inflated.

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