Following is a dashboard lights LED conversion.
The car is a 5th gen civic, but it is the same basic idea for other makes.
I'm not the author.I'm just translating and adding/removing bits and pieces.
The author is a german guy(Thank you). Source can be found:HERE
-=Needed stuff: =-
* Sharp knife
* Soldering iron
* Aluminium foil(some that you can see your reflection in, like the one they use to wrap the chocolate bars)
* Silicone or heat melt glue(or other stuff to glue with)
* 24 LEDs(less or more depending on your own design)
* Same number resistors(if you use ~4volts LEDs)
* Some thin wire(about 20"-25" long) red for the(+) and black for the(-)
* Chrome spray *otional*
* CD cleaner (or something similar...)*otional*
* Dimmer switch(or just a dimmer)*otional*
* Circuit analyzer(for testing)*otional*
LED color is up to your likings.
Note,if you are not using 12V LEDs then you need the proper resistor or you'll burn 'em.
Different color LEDs need slightly different resistor to get the voltage right.
The guy uses blue LEDs with 470 ohms resistors
I used red LEDs with the same resistors(470 ohms)
You can accurately calculate needed resistance with the Multi-function circuit analyzer,
I'm just too lazy to do that so I used same resistors(works fine for now).
-=Dismounting and taking apart of the dashboard=-
Good thread on removing and opening the dashboard on a civic: Click here
Unclip(you'll see the clips) the dashboard to remove the plastic cover.
Then unscrew all screws at the back to remove the gauges.One at a time.
-=Preparing the dashboard shell=-
Trace the route for the wire and choose spots for the LEDs.
We'll use to wires one(red) for the (+) terminal and one (black) for the (-)(or ground) terminal.
Fix the wire to the dash shell with the glue of choice.
Don't worry about the LED soldering at this point, we'll cut the wires at the right place later.
Use with the removed gauges to check whether LED or wire will be in the way.
You have to use enough LEDs here to produce even light for gauge and avoid dim areas.
Another thing optionally to do is to file the top of the LEDs to cause more light scatter
I left my LEDs unfiled so did the author.
Glue reflective foil where the LEDs will be pointed at,
but do that before spraying with chrome spray(if you decided to use the chrome spray at all)
Here is a sample pattern:
Here is the moment where you can spray the surface with chrome spray,optionally.
This is done to improve the reflective capabilities of the dash surface.
Don't forget to block the holes for the sensor bulbs/indicator bulbs to avoid paint geeting in.
Here is a sample:
Continued in the nex post(5 files attachment limit)...