I know most of you are "old school" and probably roll your eyes at us newer VW enthusiasts when we think we've accomplished some great thing. So pat me on the head and give me a patronizing "you're so cute." if you must...but I'm pretty excited to have accomplished something myself, (even if it wasn't THAT great of an accomplishment) as opposed to just paying somebody else to do it.
Oh, and before I go any further, please excuse any spelling errors, typos or grammatical errors. I claim no responsibility and I blame it all on the cocktails.
Anyway...my speedometer hasn't worked since I bought my car. So today...err I guess it would be yesterday now... I had nothing better to do, and I thought to myself, "Self, you're pretty good with electronic type stuff, why don't you open up the dash and see if you can't figure out what the problem is?"
So I replied, "Self, what a FABULOUS idea! I bet it's just a bad connection or something."
So I got together some tools, and a Corona. Because as we all know, when one is working on a car in one's own driveway, one must have a beer. (I think it's in the "Mechanics Code of Ethics and Conduct" manual"...seriously.)
So once I had my Corona and my tools together, me and myself went to work.
First step, I had to figure out how to get this little piece removed.
Disconnected the battery, so I didn't electrocute myself.
Carefully removed all the dash vents.
(Look at all that dust! Yuck!)
Disconnected the heater and head unit, etc.
Removed the dash bezel out of the way.
Disconnected the headlight switches, etc.
Reached back and disconnected the speedometer cable.
Disconnected all wires, and CAREFULLY removed gauge cluster.
Blew into the cable and the back of the speedometer, cleaning out the dust and such, and pulled the wire out a bit, since I didn't think it was making contact.
Looked at my dissected dash, and thought, "OMG! WTF HAVE I DONE!?" (I didn't really say O-M-G or W-T-F...but you get the picture...)
Then I had a bright idea, and thought, "As long as I have this thing apart..."
I removed the 3475630 screws holding the gauge cluster together.
Carefully removed the face plate to inspect things...
I checked out all the LED lights, and realized there were no green bulbs,
but there was a thin piece of green plastic that made the lights and clock green. And as we all know, green lights in a pink car just won't do.
I found a pink file folder, and cut out the piece that covers the top panel of lights.
the tricky part...removing and disassembling the LED clock. That part
was where I started thinking I was going to be looking on ebay or the VWVortex forums for a new gauge cluster.
Successfully dismantled it, and found the ugly green plastic, and began tracing a new one with my handy dandy exacto knife.
Time to put the clock back together...
Then I thought...that little ORANGE strip on the gas gauge needs to be pink. So I taped around it to get straight lines...
Then I got my sparkliest pink nailpolish, and painted over the ORANGE.
Then I got an even BRIGHTER idea.
After working for about 5 hours in Paintshop, and wasting a whole package of photo paper, I got it all right.
Again, with my handy dandy exacto knife, I cut it out to match...
Time to put it all back together...
Everything fits together perfectly, and I have no extra screws or parts, meaning I most likely got it all together right!
Cleaned all the dust and crap out of everything, and put the dash back together, reconnected the battery.
Voila! Everything works!
So I took Kitty for a quick test drive to see if I'd fixed the speedometer,
and I'll be danged...I now know just how fast I'm going! All it took
was a little tugging and blowing.
Next Up: How to rebuild an engine in 7 days.