Saturday 31 August 2013

The Start of the Dashboard Design

The starting point was a stainless steel, carpet covered, dashboard with a plastic steering column cover, an instrument cluster from a Ford Escort and 4 switches underneath that controlled the fog lights, the windscreen demister, the water cooling fan and the horn and the emergency ‘flashers’ switch was mounted in the middle right under the over-hang. 

The warning lights in the instrument cluster were obscured when you were driving, so the previous owner had put repeater warning lights on the top right. The green indicator light worked but he had been unable to make the Alternator and Oil Pressure lights work.

So first task was to get those warning lights working, although having done that I found they tended to be obscured by my hand on the steering wheel.

 So next I decided to move them to the middle of the dashboard, underneath the overhang so they were in shade.  I also fitted a 12V power socket and a central mount for the iPhone/Satnav, between the 2 orange switches.

My full plan is to replace the whole dashboard with 3 separate detachable panels.   A passenger side panel to allow access to the electrics, a matching driver side one to access the back of the brake mechanism and a centre console of individual instruments and a full set of warning lights.    And the cover the tunnel and gear level cover to match.

  So, a good start to what will be a major project.

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