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Date:         Fri, 17 Sep 2004 17:17:01 -0400
Reply-To:     Edward Maglott <emaglott@BUNCOMBE.MAIN.NC.US>
Sender:       Vanagon Mailing List <>
From:         Edward Maglott <emaglott@BUNCOMBE.MAIN.NC.US>
Subject:      Analog clock fix/instrument pod foil
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"; format=flowed

I recently saw this nice site put together by Paul on fixing the clock in his early vanagon:

I have an '86, and have always been annoyed by the big broken clock in my dash. At one point I was going to swap for the dash with the tach, but later decided to add a small external tach.

I expected that the guts of the analog clock in my '86 would be the same as the one in Paul's early vanagon. It is slightly different, having only one of the capacitors that Paul replaced. Otherwise, Paul's instructions are excellent. The one part that I had a little trouble with was actually pulling the whole clock out of the "pod." The key to this is that you have to carefully take out the temp and fuel gauges at the same time that you pull the clock mechanism out. I replaced the one capacitor with one from Radio Shack. Hooked the clock up to 12v dc supply, and it started right up and kept excellent time for a day or so of testing.

I put the whole thing back in the van, and then the clock did not work. I was sad. took it all back out and found that the conductor for the clock power in the plastic film was broken very near the connector. I carefully soldered a small jumper across the break. I noted that several of the other contact strips at the connector were also in bad shape. I tried to glue them back down to the plastic with no success. Once again I installed the pod back in the van and now my clock worked! Unfortunately, now my dash lights did not work. I was sad again. I carefully took things apart enough that I could examine the connector. several of the strips were lifted up and folded over. I tried to put them back in place as best I could and carefully slid the connector on. Everything seems to be working now, but I feel like that connection is pretty weak and will not tolerate many more cycles of being taken apart and reconnected. I anticipate replacing that connector in the future at some point.

Thanks to Paul for putting that instructional site up to help many of us with broken clocks.


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