Light replacement in clamshell speedometer
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Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Tue Nov 17, 2020 9:54 pm quote
I thought I would create a new post for this little task since it was kind of a fun. My 1959 VBA speedometer did not have a light bulb. It just had this empty slot and I had no idea how the original bulb was mounted.

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Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Tue Nov 17, 2020 9:56 pm quote
Voodoo gave this this old crusty speedo (at least what was left of it) that had a bulb. Original? Who knows, but I was going to find out what was behind door number one.

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Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Tue Nov 17, 2020 9:58 pm quote
So this was interesting. The speedo was lit by 2 of the smallest incandescent bulbs I've ever seen.

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Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Tue Nov 17, 2020 10:04 pm quote
I really couldn't use any of the pieces from Voodoo's speedometer, but it did give me some ideas on lighting my own. A bit of searching showed that these bulbs had an E5 base (5mm) and I found some E5 bulb holders and E5 base 6V bulbs. A scrap of sheet metal, a drill, tin snips, needle nose pliers, length of wire, soldering iron and 30 minutes later, I had a replacement bulb holder for my clamshell speedo.

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Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Tue Nov 17, 2020 10:05 pm quote
And it works!

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Enthusiast
Joined: 14 Jan 2018
Posts: 52
Location: H-town, TX
Tue Nov 17, 2020 11:20 pm quote

Nice and clean
Molto Verboso
Vespa
Joined: 19 Jun 2007
Posts: 1221
Location: California
Wed Nov 18, 2020 6:21 am quote
wow illuminates better than original nice job
Molto Verboso
Vespas 1964 GS160, 1965 SS180, 1977 V9A1T, 1983 PX150E
Joined: 16 Apr 2011
Posts: 1547
Location: Siam
Wed Nov 18, 2020 6:28 am quote
Be aware of two bulbs overheating and melting something. One is probably enough. It looks a bit to bright to me. Piaggio always had good reasons for what they designed.
Hooked
1959 VBA, 1959 Allstate boat anchor
Joined: 21 May 2012
Posts: 374
Location: Snohomish, WA
Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:56 pm quote
nomadinsiam wrote:
Be aware of two bulbs overheating and melting something. One is probably enough. It looks a bit to bright to me. Piaggio always had good reasons for what they designed.
Yeah, good point about the heat. Two bulbs definitely work better as it spreads out the light better. According the VBA owners manual, the original speedo bulb is supposd to be 0.6W. The bulbs I'm using are 1.2W each and I've got some 0.24W bulbs to try. Also, these bulb holders came with LED bulbs, but they're 12-14V so they're a little dim at 6v. I'll play around with this to see whats the best combo of heat and light. The best part of having actual bulb bases is that I can easily swap out the bulbs.

Last edited by flyngti on Thu Nov 19, 2020 1:04 pm; edited 1 time in total
Veni, Vidi, Posti
74 Super, 75 Super, PX project, LML off-roader and new to 2018, '66 Blue Badge Smallframe
Joined: 30 Nov 2011
Posts: 8014
Location: Victoria, Australia
Thu Nov 19, 2020 1:02 pm quote
Nice work Flyngti!
Member
Joined: 02 Oct 2019
Posts: 38
Location: RI
Thu Nov 19, 2020 2:30 pm quote
Instead of two bulbs, you may be able to fit in a layer of something to diffuse the light to reduce or eliminate hotspots. Depending on heat, some typing paper or rice paper might do the job. Maybe a thin sheet of frosted acrylic.
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