The gauge cluster seems to be all original. Along with the 53 years of dust and dirt. Paint overspray from a previous owner plagues the display while faded needles reside underneath and dirty and corroded metal trim surrounds them.
I removed the headlight, wiper, choke and ignition to clean, repair or replace them. The choke cable is not needed any longer, but I may reinstall it just so there will not be an empty hole where it was. The headlight and wiper switches cleaned up nicely with a little effort and seem to work well.
The ignition switch is an aftermarket universal switch. it is in good condition and I likely will not replace it.
The bezel was painted silver at one time. I cannot tell if it is original paint or not, but it got stripped and repainted either way. I used existing silver wheel paint from my 79 Wagon project.
I didn’t see a reason to strip all the surface rust from the rear of the housing because this is a recondition, not restoration. It won’t be seen and a little surface rust won’t hurt the operation of it. I did clean and repaint the inside of the housing using Krylon Satin Jade Mist, which is a very close match to the original color. For some reason I took no photos of the inside. The wiring harness is in good condition so it was also cleaned and reinstalled after cleaning each gauge terminal with a wire wheel brush.
Faded gauge needles were painted using Testors Model Masters #1175TT Fluorescent Red paint. A near exact match to the original. Also available are reproduction gauge face stickers. They look very nice and make everything crisp and clear. I opted to keep the original painted surfaces on the gauges because they were in very good condition. Again, this is not a restoration.
The paint overspray on the clear plastic face had me concerned, but brake fluid made for quick removal without harming the plastic. This is a handy tip I’ve used several times over different projects.
The completed and reassembled gauge cluster turned out pretty nice. I will reinstall switches and reinstall assembled unit back into dash once wiring under dash is completed… That’s another post for another time…
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