So one Saturday while I was waiting for parts to arrive, I had this wild idea... LED lights in the interior... I couldn't just replace the bulbs with LED's.... hell, anyone could do that... I had to make something from scratch....



Looking at my work bench, I had all these various LED bulbs, strips and panels laying around. I believe at the same time, I had just installed my battery (after 13 years) and after rewiring the car myself. I was happy to see that no smoke was bellowing from anywhere... especially under the dash. To make sure, I opened the doors and using the courtesy lights, tried to verify all was in good order. However, as each of you know, those two courtesy lights are horrible at lighting up anything... so I grabbed a 9volt battery and wired one of the small 12volt LED panels with about 48 bright white chips on it to use as a flashlight. I was so impressed with the brightness that I decided that is exactly what I wanted under the dash... and here is what I made.


1. Locate the courtesy light and remove the metal bracket so only the socket is left hanging.



2. Expose the wire end by pushing the socket and spring back.


3. Cut the wire end off.




4. Using butt connectors both make and female along with some good quality marine shrink tube with the glue in it... make a butt end connection in place of the socket.




5. Now its time to make the light panel and mount it.



I used some strong tie brackets I had laying around... there were perfect. These can be bought at Lowe's for less than a dollar. I had to break off the sharp tabs that are used to hammer them into the stud to protect wires and pipes from having nails driven through them. Keeping the one tab, I drilled out the hole a bit larger to accept a 10x32 3/4inch screw.
I used pure clear silicone to "glue" it to the bracket after I soldered the pos and neg wires.



6. Since the wire that feeds the courtesy lamp only carries the 'hot' or positive, it was necessary to ground the LED panel to the dash. I did this by simply attaching the ground to the mounting screw. I used a bit of silicone to glue it all in place.

7. I also purchased a nylon spacer that was 1/4" thick, that and the white cap to finish it off at Lowe's.
In order, put screw through ground then hole in bracket, then spacer then tighten with 10x32 nut.


8. Insert in dash from topside of where the old courtesy lamp bracket mounted, then cap and nut.tighten nut, click cap shut... DONE!



The only thing you see is maybe a little bit of the white nut cap, but you have to be laying on the carpet like I am... with the seats removed...



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