I was told there’s a thread on Facebook about how to install one of Mac’s Dashes……… doing that now on Ruby, if you wondered how to do this…. follow these posts when you see “Ruby” in my headers and Ruby’s dash is being installed slowly and carefully…… follow what I do here. Please remember wit’s human nature to watch how someone does something then you say “I can do that better and faster like this…….. my suggestion to you is do any project you do exactly as someoene shows you… there may be variables you may not find until you are done. Do it once as someone says THEN take shortcuts and your own ideas on the next one…. Oh, that’s right… you only have one dash to install! Make a decision how you will do that… and good luck…..
So on Ruby’s Mac Daddy dash, dismantle and prewiring happens in that order. Go back to past “Ruby” posts to see how to start.
OK, here we go back in…… previously I dismantled the dash removing the original cluster and “donut” to get to the original harness. Now, neatness matters, remove all the original wiring you will not be reusing both in the dash AND on the rest of the engine harness Aff that stuff out of the way now the new Mac harnesses can be wired into the original wiring with new circuits bunded to run Wired like this, each cluster of the new dash has a coded harness So with each now wired, you can connect everything like this and literally have the complete dash operate outside the dash laying even in your lap. Now THAT’s something you can work on! Now prewired we move on to some other prewiring issues.
Top Clearance lights are NOT all created equal! You can find LED clones of our original “Cats eye” top clearance lights. LED light are LED lights … right? WRONG! Ir’s the quality of the LED and how they are assembled. I have seen them all…… let me tell you why I KNOW you didn’t use the ones I do….. how?
Price is noe the determining factor…. everyone wants to try and make you think that way. Lets talk about things you CAN see other than the sales pitch…… First here is the light pattern Here is looking at our top clearance light from the top It has a pile of super bright LED’s facing up. Looks cool but you would have to see these from the second floor of a building…. they are on the top. LED lights shoot their light in a straight line. So what does our clearance light look from the ground looking up?? If those were all the LED’s in the light it would give a glow which many do. But ours have 2 rows of super bright LED lights facing forward Very cool and very different! So you say, I want some of these… you call and I tell you they are $16 each. You say back…”crap, I can buy those for $9 each on line. Not so bunky…. I know no one is using these because from the factory there is only 1 hot wire coming out of the molded and sealed lens assembly! They are designed to ground the light with 1 of the 2 mounting screws. That would be fine if we were mounting our clearance lights to metal…. they are mounted to SMC plastic… no ground! As you can see, they come with some really nice thick gaskets and totally sealed with ss screws and seal washers so for me, it’s a no brainer to grind into the epoxy sealant on it’s bottom with a Dremel tool to access the ground ring on the screw opening
and using my old bench solder station (I DID go to solder school back then) connect a ground wire so the lights will ground with a ground connection
then test each one on the bench…. do that 10 times… 5 front and 5 rear lights Now we can install top clearance lights before the front and rear caps go in. Why $16 each? Labor to rewire and test each light? How much is my custom time worth? Oh and I do work pretty cheap so are these the best deal? Quality LED’s, light pattern and a modified superior part…. I rest me case. We do not stock these but I WILL make you up some if you want these, give me a call. You can’t buy THASE on Amazon with free shipping! Want something nice, it won’t be the cheapest…….. custom parts are something that makes a quality restoration stand out……
and one more with that…. take a look at our side marker LED lights. 4 super bright LED’s in a tasteful oval sealed module… you’ll see those when they get installed.
On to more in process, we need to refinish the brittle interior ABS plastic panels we will reuse. The front side panels are effected too These will go through the same process you will see here. We’ve been talking about the front and rear caps. In Ruby (#41 prototype) had a hand made rear interior cap Not useable, I pulled a production rear ABS plastic cap from another coach.. a 1973 model. The front original ABS production cap in the coach was not in very good condition. UV light has brittled out the ABS plastic, cracks formed in some very visible areas. We were thinking to use this other custom looking front cap Hey, are WE not MEN……. lets fix that thing! The first step in restoring these panels is first get off any glues and stuff stuck to them. In the case the rear cap was a blast and I think we had a little fun with getting the liquid nails off of it…. that process yielded a smooth finished original plastic cap There are discolorations, screw holes, gouges, cracks and sanding and scraping marks covering it after the cleaning process. We will first repair the cracks and reinforce the brittle plastic panel overall. How to do that?
First build a mold and secure down the plastic panel back to it’s original shape This way, the cracks close up and you have a shape the panel used to be so you can reinforce it. Being made of ABS plastic, we mix a slurry from ABS/PVC glue fixing it with “tiger hair” and fiberglass mat fabric. This will stick to the ABS original plastic We know this is an original 1973 front cap (the original one out of #41) because the first year had a loose fitted sheet of insulation laying on top of the cap. You can see the remnants of that insulation…… will be reinsulated much better……
All of these plastic interior parts will be clean and repaired before getting retextured… stay tuned for that……
Guess that’s enough for 1 day….. what can I say I enjoy showing you these thing… thanks for your visit and support.
One thing that I want you to take away from yesterdays pose…. very important understand and something I will be telling anyone that will listen…..DO NOT DRIVE YOUR COACH OVER 60MPH OF LONG LENGTHS OF TIME….. YOU ARE RISKING THINGS BAD TO HAPPEN! hEY, IT’S 40 YEARS OLD…. BE NICE!.