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Topic: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body  (Read 1213 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • Nouniard
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New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Like many of you who have JX deluxe Samurais with the center clock, my display had faded and I was left with a blank orange glow. I looked at the aftermarket LCD and analog clocks offered by Low Range, etc. but I wanted to keep it as factory as possible. So I went searching on eBay for DIY clocks that I might be able to retrofit into the old clock housing. I ended up going with this one: 0.30" Digital Car Motorcycle bike Clock Watch Time DC 12V 24V yellow LED Clock. Search 0.30" LED clock if the link goes bad.

Picked one up in yellow to match the rest of the dashboard and waited two weeks for it to arrive. Disconnected and removed the old clock from the dash and then took it apart:

1. I first figured out which connections were going to be relevant to me. As it's an LED clock, you don't need to worry about a dimming switch for a backlight and only need to use the ignition "key on" (IGN+) and ground (-E).

2. Push down on the tabs, open the back of the clock and remove the screws for the old clock electrical board.

3. Remove the LCD display and other bits. You should be left with the clock board soldered onto the back casing.

4. Desolder all the wires and remove them from the back casing. I just used a cheap soldering iron from Harbor Freight.

5. I grabbed the new LED clock and identified the parts. Pretty simple...which is good as I'm new to electrical work.

6. Place the clock display inside the now empty housing. I cut small pieces of sponge and used some crafting glue to center and align the display with the housing. I also cut and inserted two small strips of very fine sandpaper (it matched the color/texture of the LED display) on either side as it didn't quite fill the opening.

7. Solder the power and ground wires to the ignition and ground points. It isn't very hard. This was my first time trying and I was self-taught through the University of YouTube.

8. Take the time setting button and put it behind the hour adjustment button. The minute button won't be used.

9. Secure the button. I took one of the screws I removed from the old clock electronic board and re-used it to secured the new adjustment button.

10. Close it all up.

Went out to the Samurai and plugged it back worked! ;D

Press and hold the hour adjustment button and the clock will start going up. The longer you hold, the faster the time increments. It's bright enough to be seen during the day and looks great at night. Plus, the yellow color matches the rest of the dash/gauges.

  • Last Edit: Sunday, Feb 21, 2016, 10:30 AM by Nouniard
1970 MG MGB GT - 1987 Austin Mini Cooper - 1988 Suzuki Samurai JX

  • beekiller
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  • Krew Krawlers, Mountain Division
Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #1
Nice job on the writeup!  This one is well deserving - moving to the How-To section.  [thumbsup]
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  • 82ABNVET
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #2
Very nice, great job! 👍🏻👍🏻
The quickest way to get better is to get smarter!

  • norzuki
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #3
That my friend is really .... really cool [thumbsup]
Loud Proud & Country By The Grace Of God !!!

  • 1madzuk
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #4
I like! Every time I'm in the wrecking yards I'll pull the clocks. I get lucky 1% of the time. I have about 8 clocks that could use this up grade. Thanks [thumbsup]
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86 Tin Top-6.5 t/case, 5:13 Diffs,Spooled/spooled,Kong.1.6 8V CV carb
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  • G
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #5
That is awesome, can I just send you my clock for you to mod/install? 

Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #7
Impressive. Very innovative idea and a nice write up to boot.

If you would like to have only the "lit up" segments of the LEDs visible (as opposed to all the segments, lit and unlit) I highly recommend the following trick. (I used this trick for years upgrading CB radio channel displays to the new (at the time) blue LED segments.)

Salvage some thin, clear Lexan from some retail product packaging (it's the stiff clear plastic so many things come in today). Cut out a big flat piece of it and tint it with a scrap piece of limo-tint or other dark automotive window tint material (the stick-on-and-squeegee kind, not the static-cling kind), Apply the tint to the Lexan just as you would a car window.

Let it dry a few minutes and then cut out an appropriate size piece to cover your LED display. The simplest and best looking way is to install it on the INSIDE of the display opening on the clock face, with the lexan side touching the clock face, and a few tiny drops of superglue. The tinted window, so to speak, will be sandwiched between you LED display and the clock housing (which is why you want a THIN piece of scrap Lexan).

Once installed, you will only see "lit up" segments, and will find the level of intensity more in line with your factory instrument lights.

Just my .02
This Month's Special:<br />Used paint. Free. Shaped like a Samurai.

  • ack
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #8
This is also searchable in the Ack's FAQ database!

'88 Samurai, '88 Samurai tintop, '14 Ford Transit Connect. />Ack's FAQ - nearly 600 searchable links to Suzuki SJ, LJ,  Escudo/Vitara/Sidekick/Vitara and Jimny information!

  • G
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #9
Can I just send you my clock?  ;D

  • G
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #10
How do you remove from dash? Just pull straight out? 

  • eruby
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Re: New LED dashboard clock using OEM clock body
Reply #11
Yes you should be able to pull straight out
Who needs more than 63HP??
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