NOTE: At this point, you need to carefully push the instrument cluster back into the dash board mounting brackets. You do NOT need to put any of the screws, etc. back into position. You do need to firmly seat the cluster so the electrical connectors make contact since we need to light up the instrument panel before we put the overlays in place.
To properly position the overlay, you need to darken the area so you can clearly see your dash lights when you turn them on. You can do this step in the evening, once the sun has set or you can cheat like Jim and I did. Jim closed the garage door but we still had some light from the door's windows. He grabbed a blanket and positioned it so that it blocked the light that was spilling in from the windows. That was just what was needed to illuminate the back of the overlay. Carefully slip the overlay over the needle, being careful to not bend for fold the overlay. You want it to lay perfectly flat on the instrument panel so putting a little crease in it is not recommended.
Although you may not be able to clearly tell it in the above picture, the light from the panel will show through the overlay. Align the marks and numbers with the those showing from behind. Take your time and you will get everything to line up nicely. Jim did a good job getting the overlays to line up with the factory lettering. You will be able to see when you are properly aligned. When you are, then carefully press on the overlay so the tape will adhere. You can move the needle around so that you can press the overlay onto the panel. Congratulations, you just installed your first overlay! Piece of cake!
Proceed with the remaining overlays in the same fashion, taking your time and
being careful to get the overlay properly aligned over the marks and numbers
that lie beneath it. Be careful that you do not push on the overlay before
you have it in position.
Three down and three to go. So far, so good. By now,
I was starting to get the hang of this alignment thing. Jim would hold up
the blanket each time so I could clearly see the lettering that was shining from
beneath the overlay.
Here is a pic with all of the overlays in place. As you can see, there is not screws holding anything in place. Oh, don't forget to install those little zero stop posts for the two big gauges. I figured if I reminded you here, again, maybe you wouldn't forget to do it like I did.
After the little posts were put back into position, it was just
a matter of back tracking the steps we did when taking everything apart.
If you end up with an extra screw, you obviously forgot to put them all back
into their respective holes! Yes, I can speak from experience on this
issue. I'm glad I had Jim around to keep me honest (and to help me count
those crazy screws!)
Here is another picture of the finished project, all wrapped up and ready to be driven home.
OK....so my digital camera does NOT take good pics in the dark. I used Photoshop and ramped the brightness way up on this pic in order to see some detail. I took the pic in my garage after I got home. With no windows, I had no problem with it being dark As you can see, the overlays do light up from the back side, as they should. As I said, if you take your time while applying the overlays, you will get everything lined up and looking as good as I did. (oops, I think I just patted myself on the back!) Anyway, it does look a lot better, in the dark, than the above pic shows.
So, Lady has a new look. I feel confident that my overlays won't bump her horse power by 20% like the K&N filter did, nor will it make me virtually unstoppable on the trail (like my new MT/Rs did). But one thing is for sure, I am very happy with the new look and I know that Lady won't mind showing off her new instrument panel to anyone that wants to see it.
A big thanks to Jim for the assistance in helping me install these. I'm always glad to see people like Jim filling the niche markets that the big companies don't wish to be bothered with. Thanks Jim for a fine product!
Happy trails and TREADLightly!
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