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Old 01-28-2007, 11:50 AM
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12v source for custom gauge cluster

I'm installing a custom vdo gauge cluster in my 57 Chevy truck project. I have two options for a 12v source. The vdo instructions call for a straight 12v source for the instrument lights and I have one in my custom wiring harness but I'm wondering if it would be better to use the instrument light source on my headlight switch so that i can dim the lights? Any thoughts?

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Old 01-28-2007, 01:07 PM
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You will need (2) 12 volt sources for the guages.

One is for "ignition ON" to provide continuous power to the guages.

The other is for the dimming feature of the guage lighting. This is derived from the headlight switch.

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Old 01-28-2007, 02:26 PM
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Doc here,

You SHOULD Be able to pick up Instrument Dimmer from the Instrument lighting on the radio circuit..

In most cases on a modern CD player, (with Auto Dimmer) this wire isn't even used on the radio..

If you use a straight unswitched 12 volt source, the panel lamps will be on 24/7/365, giving you dead battery's..

If you use a switched source, it will be on whenever the key is on..not really needed during the daylight hours..

If you Tap into the radio dimmer, it will dim and only be on during darkness or when the headlamps are on. Be sure to UPGRADE The dimmer fuse at the fuse buss to support the added draw of the panel lamps if needed.

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