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Old 01-03-2016, 08:30 AM   #1
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Gauge cluster lcd repair?

I have a 996 gauge cluster I want to put into my 99 986 but the lcd with the clock is damaged. Does anyone have any experience with this type of repair? Can anyone recommend a shop that is reputable that can fix this? I live in RI.

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Old 01-03-2016, 11:07 AM   #2
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There are places that can repair or refurb gauge clusters. The downside is that the cost ($250-$350) is often about equal to buying a salvage/eBay replacement cluster.

North Hollywood Speedometer: North Hollywood Speedometer | NH Speedometer

VDO Repair: Instrument Cluster Repair, Auto Parts Repair, MID repair, Navigation Repair Service

Palo Alto Speedometer: Palo Alto Speedometer: Repair, Restoration, and Sales of Automobile Gauges

Some folks handy with electronics have replaced just the failed LCD portion themselves by using parts from here: Automotive LCD|LCD for Instrument Cluster
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Old 01-03-2016, 05:44 PM   #3
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I contacted North Hollywood and Palo Alto Speedometer a few years ago when I was installing my 996 cluster. At that time, they said they could not obtain the lcd's for the 986/996 clusters from VDO. Maybe that has changed in the interim.

I think you may be able to de-solder a good lcd from another damaged cluster and re-solder it your cluster. However, I think that may require a special tool.

As you know, I ended up re-programming the circuit board from my 986 cluster and fit it in a damaged 996 cluster: http://986forum.com/forums/general-discussions/43017-carrera-gauge-swap.html
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Old 01-03-2016, 05:56 PM   #4
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The LCD ribbon cables are attached to the board via thermal bond. They can be carefully removed and swapped with a temperature controlled soldering iron with blade attachment. I believe the temperature for these is 180f.

I just picked up another cluster, so plan to do this before spring. I'll be sure to do a write up with pictures (I actually have 3 scrap clusters, so I'll experiment before I try it on mine).
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Old 01-03-2016, 06:11 PM   #5
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When Wheeler Dealers restored an Audi TT, there was a scene where they replaced a defective lcd on the cluster using a specialized soldering iron. I'm not certain it was the tool you discuss, but it sounds like it is similar. You are smart to try a few practice runs on scrap clusters. This seems like a task that would take two or three practice runs for me.
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Old 01-04-2016, 10:53 PM   #6
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Try vdorepair.com

They replaced an LCD on my '98 986 cluster.

Fast turnaround, mostly reasonable price

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