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cosmetic yes, but still bummed


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The black plastic film in the shift indicator had failed in places and so I found a supply of virtually identical, matt finish, signage plastic. Got it replaced and it really looks nice. While I was there, I decided that it would be a good time to clean the indicator shift pattern overlay as I knew it was dirty. Let me back up a bit and say that I was fortunate that ALL the EL on the indicator worked perfectly at that point. I used 409 and a cotton swab and cleaned the shift pattern film. What I did not notice was that a tiny bit of the 409 went over the side of the film and the EL circuit board was wicking it up. I was so happy with the results of the plastic film replacement to only be totally bummed out when I plugged the EL back in and found that most of the halos were either partially dead or greatly diminished in brightness. I removed the electrical contact wiper that slides with the selector and cleaned it and used a white pencil eraser to carefully clean the circuit board traces but not improvement. On further inspection, I can see where the 409 getting wicked into the circuit board caused a delamination of the upper film at the very edge. I went online to one of the bigger EL DIY sites and they showed a similar situation from cutting EL panels and using a hot iron was able to repair the lamination. Tried that, but again no cigar.

So, now I am on a mission to either find good salvage 86/89 Riviera/Reatta shift selector indicator or come up with a DIY EL remake.

So for those of you out there with working EL shift indicators, DON'T allow anything wet to close to the EL panel as this appears to be the Achilles heel of the EL panel in this location.

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