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LUMINESCENT SHIFTER STRIP


BrentS

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The luminescent strip that lights up the P-R-N-D-3-2-1 for my '89 doesn't work anymore. Has anyone rigged up some kind of replacment light for this? I would rather <span style="text-decoration: underline">all</span> the shift positions light up, rather than none.

The power window and power mirror buttons still light up, and the shifter strip would occasionally light when I was putting side pressure on the connector, so I think the problem is with the strip itself.

Does the luminescent strip work on 12V DC?

How does it light up the various shifter positions?

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Yes. The first thing I did was disconnect that plug (power window/mirror button lights go out), inspect the terminals, inspect the 4 pins on the luminescent strip, and plug it back in. Did this a few times. I notice that if I apply side pressure to the whole 4-pin socket while the plug is in, the strip lights up intermittently.

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On 1/31/07 I posted a solution. Maybe Ronnie will put it on his website if he feels it has some value...

AutoZone has a blue led light strip from Pilot Automotive #CZ181B. I bought 2 light strips, but you might be satisfied with one.

Procedure

Remove shifter knob. On the back side of the knob there is a hog ring that needs to be pried out. Then pull straight up on the knob and set it aside. Next remove the shifter panel by working the panel up with your fingertips. The panel is held in place by snap clips. Then unfasten the electrical connector. The panel should now be free from the car.

On the back side remove the 3 screws that hold the light panel in place. First remove the protective panel then the luminescent panel. You will then cut 2 slots [from the outside edge to the width of the LED strip]leaving a center piece of original material for support on both ends of the plastic housing. [This is so you can run the LED light strips thru the unit, replacing the luminescent panel].Then reinstall the top black panel and reinstall the screws. The unit comes with a test button and batteries. Cut them off. The wire lead remaining you now fish thru the console to the fuse box and wire it in. Do not worry about the extra led light strip that hangs over. You can either leave it or trim it off. [Only trim the end on the opposite end of the wire lead].

You now have a 12 volt factory look console. The only downside is that you will not have the "ring" that goes around the designation of what gear you are in. But it looks factory and the LED bulbs match up to the shifter light openings.

I did this 2 years and 30000 miles ago and it was one of the best "upgrades" that I ever did. It took me a little over an hour to do, because of all the "1st time" figuring, but it really is not that difficult and can be done in about 30-45 minutes time.

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I think I will try it.

One additional thing a person should do is tape up the old electroluminescent panel and plug it back into it's socket and then leave it in the console. If you do not have all three items plugged in, the window and mirror switches will not light up.

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I think Jim's comments should be added.

My shifter panel only lit up one time [for about 30 minutes] after I bought it and shortly after that I did the "upgrade" so never thought about all three plugs having to be in use. That also explains why my window and mirror switches do not light up either.

A little project for when I get the car out in about 30 days.

Can't hardly wait. [to those of you who live in warmer climes, I envy you]...

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Guest Mc_Reatta

The electroluminescent elements in the 88/89s run on 110 volts. There are 2 inverters that supply it. (One in dash and one in console.) I don't think those elements would burn out unless they are damaged in some way. Much more likely that the inverter dies or the connections to the elements get dirty. The fact the the ones in the switches are still working, I'd clean the connections to the elements first before replacing them. If you have a volt meter check for 110 volts from the inverter to the element.

Mike McDonald

Space Coast, FL

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That's a little extreme. I had a Mercury Capri - an Aussie built topless rice burner. I felt like a helicopter pilot: If something bad hasn't gone wrong yet, it's about to.

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Mike, every panel I have seen are cracked. Never been the connection. When I go out to the u-pick yards and look at Rivs I don't even think of shifter panels.

Proof in the pudding is that Jim, our resident used part guru is thinking of doing the LED conversion.

Rawja, that is why Jim says to leave the orginal luminescent panel in the console area and to keep it plugged in to keep the window/mirror switches illuminated.

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Electroluminescent elements dim significantly over time and use. That's why the "D" section is dimmest.

A few years ago I took apart a power mirror switch and I firmly believe it would be relatively easy to make a new electroluminescent overlay, doubly so for the shifter as you don't have to worry about replacing the finished surface in that case.

I'm gonna disassemble a PRNDL module this weekend. Stay tuned....

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Well, took apart the PRNDL panel and its a little complicated but I think do-able for replacement of the electroluminescent elements.

Seems that it would be easy to replace the whole complicated setup with a single sheet of electroluminescent material, but I'm going to attempt to do it "right".

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