Author Topic: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials  (Read 15864 times)

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Offline DanSE4

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A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« on: February 10, 2013, 16:10:58 PM »
So, as Plasma Dials have featured as a bit of a grey area on a few forums recently I thought I'd share what I've found out over the last few weeks which will hopefully assist anyone interested in going down the plasma avenue. :)

My reasoning for wanting Plasma Dials is quite a simple one. When I used blue LED's on my dash clocks & oil/volt gauges a while back, I liked the result due to the type of dials I had.



Although the Calibra dials are all backlit, some (as in the case of my old 8v clocks) will only allow the illumination through the various points on the dials where as others (later V6 dials for example) are completely translucent so the whole dial lights up with whatever colour is backlighting them. IMO, this looked crap in blue so the need for something else became apparent!

My first port of call was this lot.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/290504640986?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649

The cheapest I've found & I'm a bit pissed with them to be honest (I'll explain that one shortly). The above link is ONLY good for early Turbo's with the 10-160mph mechanical dials, NOT the V6 (although they state in the listing that they are) or the later Turbo's with electronic 0-160mph dials.

They also do these in the 10-140mph 2.0 NA flavour.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/VAUXHALL-CALIBRA-ASTRA-MK3-140MPH-PLASMA-GLOW-WHITE-DIAL-KIT-/290627858031?pt=UK_CarsParts_Vehicles_CarParts_SM&hash=item43aac52e6f

Now, I originally bought these as they were cheap & as they were listed as suitable for the V6, I took it for granted that the seller was aware of the differences, not the case! They only have the 10-160mph dials available for the 160mph clocks so they're f*ck all use for a later Turbo/V6. I have pointed out to the seller that the listing is misleading & he should change it to state that they only suit the early Turbo's & not the V6, hasn't happened! I got a refund for the price of the dials but not postage either way, not impressed. Having actually had these in my hand I have to say they are a little "tacky" & the unit which you are supposed to attach to the dash somewhere to adjust the brightness & colour is big, cumbersome & looks like it's been salvaged from the comms room of a WWII battleship. I recommend avoiding this lot like the plague!

I then found this lot.

http://www.mygarage-glasgow.co.uk/pages/Instruments/indiglodials/mph_main.htm

Seem to have the Calibra range & the correct 160mph gauges for the V6.

http://www.mygarage-glasgow.co.uk/pages/Instruments/indiglodials/dials_files/Vauxhall_astra_Cav_160mph_hybrid/Dials_picture_day.JPG

http://www.mygarage-glasgow.co.uk/pages/Instruments/indiglodials/dials_files/Vauxhall_astra_Cav_160mph_hybrid/Dials_picture_Lite.JPG

These are the ones that have had photo's posted before, a bit dearer & I was very tempted but I want something different! :) I can't vouch for the seller here as I didn't bother contacting them.

Finally, I found this lot.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/130834999892?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1497.l2649

The Ebay stuff they sell is ONLY in KMH so I contacted them via email to see what they could do for a custom V6/MPH requirement.

Cut a long story short, a lot of scanning my dials & emails later (105 bloody Euro's later) they are producing me something along these lines in MPH with "Calibra V6" on the dials somewhere.





They are going to email me the final design for approval/tweaking before they actually produce them so I have a little more control over what I actually end up with. I can't fault the Polish guys here so far, the correspondence with them has been excellent & they seem very keen to make sure I get exactly what I want.

Fingers crossed they deliver & I'll let everyone know the outcome.

Hope this helps anyone else looking for Plasma Dials. :)
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Offline Butcher

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2013, 16:17:41 PM »
They look the nuts 8) id of been interested if my Calibra wasn't a garden ornament at the moment :(

Offline DanSE4

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2013, 16:24:19 PM »
Mine's still a garage ornament mate. I'm getting stuff ready to put it all together & hopefully be insured, taxed & MOT'd for the beginning of April. :)
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Offline Teejay

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2013, 17:08:15 PM »
Topic of the week!
Nice one Dan
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Offline RodOGW

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2013, 17:14:49 PM »
They are something else ... loving them indeed. But as you say Dan, took weeks to sort them out and sometimes that's what it takes to get something different and aesthetic ... well worth it in the end.

Offline lammy

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2013, 18:21:18 PM »
What about a group buy? would they produce a batch as oposed to a one off for you and give a decent price on them?...I may be interested and a few others may be by the sounds?

Are they sending you a pic of the ones you have requested they make up before you decide?..thet could be a clincher on othres wanting a set?

Offline DanSE4

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2013, 18:33:27 PM »
I'm getting a screenshot of the design for approval before they actually make them.

I've paid for these now but as they have my scans of the UK MPH V6 dials, that may make things better for anyone else wanting any. When I see the end result, I'll post the email address & anyone interested can enquire from there. :)
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Offline lammy

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #7 on: February 10, 2013, 18:52:53 PM »
Sounds good...looking forward to seeing them....

Offline Gorfinkle

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2013, 19:24:49 PM »
Been looking at getting Plasma Dials for my V6 a awhile now, my V6 is still being worked on, and hopefully the engine will be in the car in the next month, then hopefully by April she should be on the road. I would be very interested if these dials work out
The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!

Offline DanSE4

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2013, 19:37:25 PM »
I'll post everything I get from them here including (& most importantly) the final result. :)
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Offline Gav

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2013, 20:18:37 PM »
Looking forward to it :D I never did a LED conversion because, as you say, it looks sh*t all blue.

There are earlier black faced dials IIRC but I just couldn't be arsed :)

I know the digits are blue but can you get your needles to glow red? Blue digits and red needles are awesome 8)

Offline Miscbrah

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2013, 14:19:25 PM »
Looking forward to it :D I never did a LED conversion because, as you say, it looks sh*t all blue.

There are earlier black faced dials IIRC but I just couldn't be arsed :)

I know the digits are blue but can you get your needles to glow red? Blue digits and red needles are awesome 8)

As far as I've seen this'd be impossible; light comes from the four 509t bulbs in the dash, whatever their colour. You COULD change the colour of the needles though, so if you're using white bulbs you'd get %colour%.

This leads me onto that very question though; how DID you change the colour of your needles to the white there? I tried prizing mine off with a fork but was only brave enough to get the fuel needle off, and it all looked a little fragile to do that to it!

Incidentally, I bought a set of blue Vectra needles off eBay in the hope that they'd just fit as replacements. They didn't.
Das it Miscbrah.

Offline DanSE4

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2013, 21:13:33 PM »
This leads me onto that very question though; how DID you change the colour of your needles to the white there?

I didn't, I haven't got the bloody dials yet (read my post again just before that pic ;)).

Getting them off with a fork is childs play you p*ssy! ;D :P
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Offline Miscbrah

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2013, 13:04:14 PM »
Getting them off with a fork is childs play you p*ssy! ;D :P

Das it Miscbrah.

Offline Calibas

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2013, 02:39:09 AM »
With these dials looks like a hot rod ... 8)
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Offline skorps1971

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2013, 04:30:29 AM »
 hi .. dials look good. mate... i got mine from here      http://www.metal-monkey.co.uk/

 i custom made them to how i wanted and not to expensive..  what you think ?
skorps

Offline skorps1971

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2013, 04:35:23 AM »


skorps

Offline skorps1971

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2013, 04:36:24 AM »
 what you cant see in the photo is the colour change from blue . to orange to red
skorps

Offline Calibas

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2013, 05:18:15 AM »
Best Regard's
Jorge Saramago

Offline DanSE4

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #19 on: June 21, 2013, 08:33:38 AM »
Here's mine fitted.



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Offline lammy

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #20 on: June 21, 2013, 11:41:45 AM »
I'd have my light permanently on with those!...look great.

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #21 on: June 21, 2013, 12:04:34 PM »
I'd have my light permanently on with those!...look great.

Dan's or skorp's?

Skorp's ones like look backlit rather the "plasma" (electroluminescent)

Offline lammy

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #22 on: June 21, 2013, 12:53:48 PM »
On Dans..look realy bright even during daylight hours?..

Offline Calibas

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Re: A Bit Of A Guide To Buying Plasma Dials
« Reply #23 on: June 21, 2013, 23:10:57 PM »
Here's mine fitted.





The interior of your cally is very cute, the symbol on the plasma dials with the V6 in the center was very good. Also liked the wheel (although that says type-r lool)
Cheers mate 8)
Best Regard's
Jorge Saramago