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Author Topic: Dash Instrument Panel  (Read 3964 times)
amachinist
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« on: August 07, 2006, 10:26:38 AM »

I'm fairly new to the forum but do stop by from time to time to catch up and look for helpful tips. I live in Pa. and my wife and I purchased a '69 z/28  RS about 4 years ago after having one when we were teenagers.

I hope someone can help me out! I was having trouble with my interior lights staying on. My mechanic cheched it out and said he believes it is the light switch. I purchased one and thought I would have a go of it over the weekend. After reading through the shop manual I got started. Like other projects it was starting to turn into more then I thought. I have been trying to follow the manual and remove the dash instrument panel but it is not comming out. I have taken out all the mounting screws and the panel is loose but not comming out. I disconnected the speed-o- cable and that helped some but something is not letting it move. The wiring harness behind the dash seems to have enough slack to alow me to pull it front enough to get a look but so far that isn't happening. I would appreciate help by someone with experience. Thanks!!!   
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william
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« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2006, 08:52:18 PM »

First of all there were 4 switches used: std, std w/gauges, rs, rs w/gauges. Make sure the new one is correct for your application.

My memory is a bit fuzzy on this but I do not believe the dash needs to be removed to replace the switch. There is a small spring loaded button on the switch. If you can reach under the dash, depress it and pull the switch knob all the way out-may take some jiggling. Once out, remove the round retainer nut and the switch can be pulled out and swapped.

If you already have the dash mostly loose, take the screws out of the heater control panel. Before you do that put some masking tape across the lens at the top-once loose the panel may spring back into the top of the dash which may scratch it. It also sounds like you do not have the nuts off the studs along the right side of the housing near the heater controls-you will have to get at those from behind. Also, the nuts under the radio knobs must be removed.

« Last Edit: August 07, 2006, 08:54:22 PM by william » Logged
rich69rs
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« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2006, 09:30:04 PM »

You don't have to remove the dash or any part of it to change out the light switch.  The correct one for the RS also has two connectons for the vacuum lines that apply/remove vacuum to the top of the relay valve (mounted to the vacuum tank on LH inner fender at the front).

This has also been discussed at the following link:  http://www.camaros.org/forum/index.php?topic=656.msg3653#msg3653

As William stated, and also discussed in the link, there is a plunger that has to be depressed to diengage the light switch knob.  Even after you get the plunger depressed, the knob probably will not just come out.  You have to be patient and wiggle it and encourage it - especially if it has been there a long time.  Once you get it out, remove the nut on the dash side of the switch and remove it.

Attached pic is the original switch I removed from my 69 RS last year.  You are looking at the bottom of the switch, as you'd see it if you looked up from under the dash.  First remove both vacuum lines, noting which line goes to the #2 connection and which line goes to the #3 connection, depress and hold the plunger, and "wiggle" the knob out.  A little lubricating spray down the shaft of the knob won't hurt either.

Be patient - it probably will not just "fall out in your hands".

Keep us posted and good luck.

Richard
« Last Edit: August 07, 2006, 09:36:46 PM by rich69rs » Logged

Richard Thomas
1969 RS
RamAirDave
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« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2006, 10:53:45 PM »

Just a tip:

Pull the light switch knob out into the "ON" position.  Then depress the button and pull the knob out.  MUCH easier than trying to pull it out with it in the "OFF" position.

William made a good point about the nuts towards the RH side of the heater control panel (vertical).  I would think this is often overlooked if not familiar with these cars.  Usually easier to get to if you remove the glove box liner.

dave
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amachinist
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« Reply #4 on: August 08, 2006, 07:54:25 AM »

Thanks for the replies!!

 I did get the switch out Ok but the vacuum hoses were both off so I'll have to guess which hose goes where. My real dilemma is in doing so I bumped the wiper switch and and it fell out. The posts that it attaches to must have been brittle and now I need to fix them. That is the reason for having to remove the whole panel. I want to make new posts and epoxy them in place. Sorry about the confusion.
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rich69rs
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« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2006, 10:24:30 AM »

In reality it shouldn't matter which vacuum line you connect to which port on the switch.  When lights are off, vacuum exists from the intake manifold, through the switch, to the top of the relay valve.  When lights are on, the vacuum is cut off at the switch, which removes it from the top of the relay valve, causing the pilot valve in the bottom of the relay valve to move, which reroutes vacuum to the canisters and opens the headlight doors.
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Richard Thomas
1969 RS
JohnZ
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« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2006, 02:50:45 PM »

Make sure the stamped sheet metal grounding strap is still in one piece and is in place - it attaches to the wiper switch and the light switch, has a "leg" that attaches to the lower I.P. reinforcement, and has a wire pigtail on it that also attaches with a separate screw to the lower I.P. reinforcement along with the I.P. harness ground wire. If that strap isn't in place, the wipers won't work, nor will the instrument lights.
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'69 Z/28
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amachinist
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2006, 08:45:16 AM »

Well I tried again on Tuesday evening to remove the instrument panel without sucess. I dropped the steering column, disconnected the speed-o-cable, disconnected the tack, and dropped out the radio and it still will not tilt front and pull out like it says it should in the manuel. There are no screws holding the panel in place, it is lose. I do not feel competent enough to be removing any additional wires so I am planning to attempt to repair the posts that the wiper switch attaches to without taking dask out. Two of the three posts are broken out and will not hold the hex head screw The ground strap is there and in good condition, no problem there. I plan to put everything back together this evening and then epoxy new studs over the old ones that i trimed off just enough to still use for location. I will post how I make out with this.

Next problem: Top of dash got scratched will pulling the dash pad off. (Rookie mistake) Now I need to repaint it and I'm reading conflicking books on the proper amount of gloss. Is it glossy or semi-gloss?

Again, Thanks for the help I'm sure this has been discussed before but I did't find it with a search.   
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RamAirDave
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« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2006, 09:07:28 PM »

The dash panel should be low gloss.  Anything too shiny and you will get a lot of sun glare.
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amachinist
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« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2006, 02:30:43 PM »

Friday evening I epoxied the studs in place that I made to repair the broken ones that mount the wiper switch. Saturday I repositioned the instrument panel and tightened it down. Next I installed the wiper switch with the grounding strap. The light switch went right in no problem. I connected the battery cable to check out if interior lights were working. No problem there but I didn't try the wipers yet. I now have to repaint the top of the dash that I scratched while removing the dash pad. I managed to get it sanded and primered. Tonight I want to finish sanding out and marks and then finish coat. If all goes well I'll have it completed in a day or two. THANKS to all that offered advise!!         
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amachinist
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« Reply #10 on: August 25, 2006, 11:46:15 AM »

Last week as I finished up on my project and was buttoning things up I reinstalled the dash pad. I slid all the tabs back into the dash and inserted the screws to the sides and front of the pad. The screws above the speedometer and tack went in OK but after tightening everything down the pad above the clock (between the speedo and tack) just seemes to lay there. It seems like there should be some type of clips to hold the pad in place there. Am I missing something?     
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