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Thread: Max Bulb Wattage?

  1. #1
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    Jul 2003
    Vancouver, Washington

    Default Max Bulb Wattage?

    Whats the max wattage bulb i should put in my dash lights? i had a dead bulb in my amp, fuel gauge and they coudent find the 3.4w ones i ended up with 2w they work ok but i would like to be a little brighter, i looked at a 5w halogen that fit and worked in light socket but it didnt fit in the green lens, i was thinking of pulling the green lens and running the halagen as its plenty bright and mabey just getting a green marker and turning the bulb green

    Also i thought about putting that reflective aluminum tape in there to make it like a flash light effect in there any thoughts on this?

  2. #2
    Supporting Member EScanlon's Avatar
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    Dec 2001
    Vancouver, WA


    From experience:

    Don't use the aluminum tape to add reflective properties to the cup of the instrument. What you'll end up with is a DIRECTIONAL reflector that will do more to shine the light BEHIND the faceplate without more light being sent to the front and around the faceplate.

    Paint the inside of the instrument cup with the brightest and purest WHITE paint you can find. The refractive and reflective properties of that paint will increase the apparent glow of the instruments better than anything else I've tried.

    Use Sylvania number 53. You can find these at Schuck's or Dusty's in Hazel Dell, and also G.I. Joe's. The fit is exact and you'll get a brand new bulb with perfect brightness for the instruments.

    Next, make sure that the bulb holder is free of corrosion, AND that the hole in the back of the instrument is free of paint around the opening. It needs that metal in order to make ground for the harness.

    Last item to check, is to make sure that your dimmer switch is making good contact. This is a simple rheostat resistance that is open to the air. Because it's open to the air (for heat dissipation) it can get dirty and corroded. Usually all you need is to turn it from high to low a bunch of times to wear off the corrosion on the coil of the resistance. However, don't be surprised if you have to remove the switch (tricky with the dash in) and do a mild wire brush on the surface of it, or re-tighten the contact arm back down on the switch.

    Lastly, if you are dead-set on removing the green lens, and painting the bulb, don't use a marker. The results will be uneven and barely tint the light. See if you can find INDIA INK, or in a stained glass shop, some dye.

    Hope this helps.


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