Reassembling the Digital Cluster - Bottom Section

Clean Everything!

It's easy for the LCD contacts to become contaminated with silicone oil (Armour All), bugs, and loose paint chips from the backs and sides of the panels.

 

When cleaning a cluster before reassembly, we follow the this procedure:

  1. While the cluster is apart, remove everything from the plastic housing. Then use Dawn foaming dish soap and warm water and a scrub brush to completely clean the plastic housing. Let dry thoroughly before reassembling.

  2. Using soap and water, clean both ends of every pink rubber elastomeric connector. Don't touch the edges again before reassembly.

  3. Using Residual Oil Remover or a high-grade glass cleaner and soft paper towels (we use Viva brand) or a clean lint-free cloth, clean both sides of the LCD panels. Discard the paper towels or cloth you use so that it doesn't contaminate anything else.

  4. Wash your hands with soap and water to get rid of the silicone oil, most of which comes from the front of the LCD panels.

  5. Some LCD panels have their edges painted with black paint that is now peeling. The paint chips can contaminate the electrical connections between the LCD panels and the circuit board. If your panels are painted/peeling, use a brush to remove all loose paint chips.

  6. Using cotton swabs and 70% isopropyl alcohol, clean the edge connections on each of the three LCD panels and don't touch the edges again before reassembly.

  7. Using cotton swabs and 70% isopropyl alcohol, clean the gold-plated LCD contacts on the bottom side of the bottom circuit board. Don't touch the contacts again before reassembly.

WARNING! When installing the LCD display panels, verify that each is inserted and resting flat between the alignment tabs. Visually inspect everything before tightening any screws. If you get this wrong, the panels can crack!

Figure 1 - Evil Tabs

 

Reassembly

  1. Place the plastic housing face-down on a hard level surface. Do not use a soft surface or a towel between the table and the housing, as this can cause the LCD panels to not seat properly.

    Figure 2 - Metal LCD retaining clip shown in red

  2. Install the metal LCD retaining clip as shown in figure 2 in red.

  3. Place the glass LCD displays into the Digital Cluster housing. When viewed from the front, the speedometer should be on the left and the tachometer is on the right. When installing the center panel, move the clip shown in red in figure 2 out of the way, place the panel, then let the clip slide the LCD panel into place. Make sure the clip is not trapped between the housing and the center LCD panel.

    Figure 3 - LCD Panel Placement. Evil Tabs are shown in red

  4. Warning! Make very sure that the LCD panels are not resting on top of ny of the evil tabs shown in figure 3, or on top of the metal retaining spring. If you don't get this step right, the LCD panels will be damaged!

    Figure 4 - LCD Alignment Clips are circled in red, blue and yellow

  5. Install the rubber blocks which hold the speedometer and tachometer. There are four of this kind, and they are different from the center panel blocks. See figure 4 for proper placement and orientation.

  6. Install the rubber blocks which hold the center panel (there are two of this kind, and they are different from the speedo/LCD blocks). See figure 4 for proper placement and orientation.

  7. Re-verify that the LCD panels are positioned properly.

    Figure 5 - Colored Sheet

  8. Replace the thin plastic colored sheet. The graphics on the sheet should roughly match the graphics on the panels. If they don't, try turning over the sheet. Make sure the holes in the sheet go over the plastic posts. See figure 5 for proper alignment info.

    Figure 6 - Light Diffuser Placement

  9. Replace the three thick clear plastic light diffuser panels. For now, they just rest on top of the colored sheet above the LCD panels. See figure 6 for proper orientation.

    Figure 7 - Elastomeric Connectors and trays installed.

  10. Place the plastic trays that position the pink rubber blocks over the diffusers. Make sure that the holes in the trays fit over the holes in the diffusers, and that they fit over the holes in the sides of the housing. See figure 7 for proper location and orientation.

  11. Replace the pink rubber blocks in the black trays. Make sure that a block completely fills the length of each tray. There are only two lengths of blocks, but they often expand outward from the pressure. These should be installed so that they're as loose as possible in the tray. If it's tight, try placing the block in another tray. See figure 7 for more info.

    Figure 8 - Top Board Installation

  12. Replace the bottom circuit board. Start all 22 screws, but DO NOT tighten anything yet! See figure 8 for more info.

    Warning! Be absolutely sure the glass panels are resting flat against the bottom of the plastic housing. Without turning it over, pick up the cluster and look at the bottom (front) of the housing. Visually inspect each corner of each panel to make sure all are resting against the inside of the housing, and that there are no gaps between the glass and the face of the housing!

  13. Tighten the bottom board screws evenly.

  14. Replace the odometer and the three screws which hold it in place. See figure 8 for more info.

 

Checking the Bottom Board for Proper Installation

Figure 9 - Test Points for the cluster

This step isn't critical, but it might help if you're having trouble with a particular segment not working properly.