First of all, is getting at the dash, heating, and AT column lights easy? I think the hex heads on the dash seem pretty easy. What about everything else? Help would be appreciated. If anyone has pictures, that would be sweet
Well I don't know about the shifter cover, but the other stuff isn't bad. The only trick is getting the screws out just above the radio (they're upside down and semi-hidden, and then there's one hidden hex screw under the leftmost black plastic strip running from the vent to the wheel. So don't try yanking the instrument panel until you've gotten that last screw out. And be gentle with everything, expecially putting it bacl together. Theold plastic cracks real easily. I recommend using some blue threadlock on the screws and just snugging them down so you don't crack stuff.
I think the radio bulb is under its top cover, but I've never taken the heater controls apart.
Nope, it's all pretty straightforward. The cluster is the toughest with those hex screws (but oh how they look so stylish). Just look underneath for those hidden screws, and the whole air duct/cluster/HVAC stuff is uncovered easily.
Purple will be dimmer than green, due to wavelength of light. Red would be your best bet, although it might look a little strange. I did my Tempo lights in red a while ago, and even went so far as to switch to red LEDs in my Escort, until the dang things short circuited internally and killed all the LEDs. That was for the dome lights..never messed much with the cluster bulbs. Untinted should give the most light (what you want since 1st gen clusters are notoriously dim). If only Ford backlit them like a Tempo
I've always thought that the 1st gen dashes were annoying, as far as dimness goes. I've also got some weird delamination going on that is turning half of the plastic cover for the cluster into a cloudy mess!
If you want brighter cluster lighting, try removing the covers that snap in over top the bulbs. You'd have white lights, or if you wanted to, you could replace the bulbs with what ever color you want. Those covers give the lights a green effect. Dimming the light I say. The bulbs can be replaced with 194s, I saw somewhere.
Has anyone tried unscrewing the speedo cable from the tranny before trying to pull the cluster out? I do that, since the speedo nut is only finger tight. Loosen it up, and the cable will move freely, so anyone can get their hand behind the cluster...because it now moves