Series 2 "panel edge" lights

What do I have to do to replace the panel edge lights and green filter on a Series 2? When I open the instrument panel, it drops to about a 45 degree upward angle before fouling the center console. This does not allow for anything approaching access to the panel lights. It looks to me like I will have to remove the center console, the under dash panels, remove the pivot bolts and then perhaps I can see the back side of the panel lights. It would still be under all the wiring to the various gauges so less than ideal, and I would need decent access to replace the green filter. Is there a better was to do this? I have put this off for years because it seems so daunting and I can pretty easily live without the panel lights.

Really? No one has ever done this before? Maybe this is an excuse to let it slide for another 10 years.

I made my legend panel removable with slotted screw holes and I remove the ash tray panel to get my 1963 panel to lower far enough to perform any maintenance. I recommend you remove the ash tray panel and see if that helps. It may require removal of the shoulder bolts on either side that create the hinge points, but beware of the nylon bushings in there, getting them out and back in is quite difficult but it can be done with patience and small wrenches.

I don‘t know a green filter , I don‘t have one on my Series 2. But if I have to check a fuse or replace a bulb from the panel light I always remove the radio console. I fix it only with 2 nuts and keep a small wrench in the gloove Box ready for that . So it‘s a 2 min job. Good luck Martin

My set up is little different that John’s or Martin’s. On the Series 2, the ash tray is next to the handbrake, not under the legend panel. The center console (by recollection) is held down by the seat belt mounts in the back and bolts in the speaker surround in the front. The front bolts would come out quickly, but not the seat belt eyebolts. Certainly not a two minute job unless there is a captive nut. It has been a while since I touched them.

The green filter I am referring to sits behind the legend strip and I assume in front of the panel lights although I can’t see how my car is set up. I can tell that on my car it is bleached out and shrunken.
Below is a photo of the back side a spare switch panel I purchased showing the green filter, though it is not for a Series 2 since it has a switch for two gas tanks. Again, I can’t tell how the lights are mounted since I can’t get in there to see.

Bob the radio console and rocker switch panel on my '68 looks just like the one in your photo. My radio console comes out easily without removing the whole center console. I have an acorn nut down low and a bolt up top to match your center photo. Un-do them on each side and the radio console should remove toward the rear and up out of the way. I lay it on the passenger side floor when I need to rotate my flip -down panel the full 90 degrees instead of the 45 degrees when console is still in place. I have not had to work on the panel lights though so do not know if lowering the panel the full 90 degrees will give adequate access.

68 E-type FHC

Bob there is no need to touch the center console on my Series 2 . I have the same arrangement as you have . My horn was not working about 2 weeks ago and I first checked the fuse . As mentioned before - a 2 minute job . Because my radio is connected , I just move the console 1oo mm , that’s enough for me .
My console is fixed with 2 dom nuts , which are visible . Despite no vibrations or noise . Cheers Martin

It is not a quick/simple job.

  1. Remove radio console
  2. Drill out the 6 rivets holding the panel lights to the instrument panel from below.
  3. Flip down the instrument panel and remove the three lamp/reflector assemblies from the instrument panel
    This will expose the green filter and the panel strip. I completely disassembled my instrument panel to fully refurbish the entire thing so that is the photo you see.

Reassembly is the reverse except you need 6 new aluminum pop rivets of the correct size.

Sorry for my unprecise reply . My 2 minutes are related only to the 90 ° opening of the panel and
not the whole job . I never did this , I have installed a clear panel strip and green illuminated LED’s .

I wish I had taken more pics or better notes, but here is mine on the bench when I serviced the switches:

I recall no rivets, just a couple of screws holding in on. I surely had the center console out (2 thumbscrews and 2 nuts as I have no AC).

I was removing all the wires to the switches so I cannot say what access would have been like w/o that - probably very crowded.

One thing I think I did was replace the shouldered bolts that are the pivots for lowering the panel with some plain screws with the same threads. This makes the pivot ‘sloppy’ and gives my some free play as I lower the panel for routine service.

Thanks for all the input. This has convinced me this is a winter project rather than a rainy weekend summer project. It is interesting that the panel, which was originally designed for easy access, does not adequately allow that after the Series 2 modifications. Since the panel light is at the bottom of the panel, it is the hardest to get at. For now, I think I will live with it as is and continue to enjoy summer driving.

Are you just trying to have the panel legend strip lights show green again ? If so perhaps you could just paint the lamps green doing something like this. Page xiii in my owners manual says the Lucas 281 lamps are only 2 watts. Just a thought.

68 E-type FHC

Not a bad suggestion, even if less than ideal. While I have never laid eyes on my green filter strip, I suspect it is shrunken and deformed like others I have seen. The result is a combination of colored and uncolored light shining through the legend strip. Colored bulbs would make it all green, but still uneven. That may be a good band aid approach until I feel inspired to rip my instrument panel apart. The fix is simple. Getting at it is the issue.