The 97 odometer display issue - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old December 5th, 2007, 05:22 PM
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The 97 odometer display issue

This has probably been hashed to death, but wanted to let folks know my findings. You all know the '97 odometer issue (blinks, freaks out and goes dead) due to the weakness of the ribbon that feeds the signal from the unit to the display. Image attached. Anyway, I have found in fixing these over and over that the 97 made units have a long ribbon that folds over. This fold is usually the cause of the failure, the ribbon can't handle being folded over.
New replacement speedos are build different. They have a good bit of this ribbon cut off. This makes a nice gentle bend from the unit to the display... no folding. I think they found the problem and fixed it. Just wanted to let folks know that so if they didn't want to go with a different speedo they could get a new one, or have us rehab their old one (keeping your original miles) and the problem would not come back.
Not saying this is better than the aftermarket VDO units, those are great, just another option for folks.

I also added some odometer stuff to the info section of the ECR site for those looking to buy so they could better see if the odometer was original.
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  #2  
Old December 5th, 2007, 06:47 PM
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Edward Hartman
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Mike thanks for the heads up.

I've got to get a list together and send you my D-90, for an evaluation, and upgrades.
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  #3  
Old December 6th, 2007, 12:32 AM
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dude, that's awesome. Thanks for the update. I've been meaning to do something about mine for a long time, but didn't want a VDO.
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  #4  
Old December 6th, 2007, 07:44 AM
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I can calibrate them too (for larger tires or different gearing), but I need the truck to do that, not just the unit.
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  #5  
Old December 6th, 2007, 08:40 AM
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Good info Mike, thanks.. Mine has started doing this.
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  #6  
Old December 6th, 2007, 11:18 AM
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Smile

Thanks Mike! Now this is one less thing to worry about!
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  #7  
Old December 6th, 2007, 12:24 PM
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I'm sure mine will start doing this now. Every time I read of some glitch here or problem that I don't currently see in my truck it starts shortly after. I guess I can look for this in the future just like I can look for the transmission/ transfer case leak.
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  #8  
Old December 6th, 2007, 04:33 PM
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Andrew Najarian
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdmccallum
I guess I can look for this in the future just like I can look for the transmission/ transfer case leak.
Just keep wheelin' it and the dirt will cover up the oil!
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  #9  
Old December 7th, 2007, 01:44 PM
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My odometer went out in late August/September (right after my fuel guage and headlights quit working too). Anyway, I noticed this week that when the temps dipped into the low 30's the digits re-appeared and they only flicker a little bit now. I'm assuming the colder temps allow the current to flow better or something?

Mike, what's the cost to fix these units?
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  #10  
Old January 4th, 2008, 09:22 PM
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FYI for the '97 guys......
I sent my dead speedo/odo unit to ECR to rehab. I'm really happy with it.
Turnaround time was very fast. My truck was only down a few days.
Price roughly comparable to that of a new stock replacement unit, but being a bit of a purist, worth it to me. I wanted to retain my original date coded speedo unit and original mileage.

It's nice to have another choice to consider for this universal problem besides buying a new factory unit or going the aftermarket VDO route....

Garth
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  #11  
Old January 4th, 2008, 10:01 PM
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I have a 1997 Speedo (4.97 stamped on the back, plastic molded in 12/95)that has a dead display if anyone wants an original. Don't recall the original miles on it and the trim ring has a little dent in it, but you could touch that up with some paint and no one would notice.

Ron
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  #12  
Old January 5th, 2008, 09:18 AM
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I'll take it if its still aval.
I can have someone come by and pick it up. I grew up in Broomall. just around the corner.
thanks
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  #13  
Old January 5th, 2008, 11:38 AM
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If you have replaced yours and want an original you can have it for a 12 pack of miller lite.

Ron
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  #14  
Old January 6th, 2008, 07:07 PM
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That works for me Email me your address I will get back to you when I can come by. I may not be up there until Feb. I thought Guinness was the payment of choice for defender parts. Thanks for the deal. I will owe you one.
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Old July 13th, 2010, 10:06 AM
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Given that ECR no longer does this, does anyone know if the ribbon can just be trimmed and reinserted in the ribbon port? Is there a way to open up the speedo and without damaging the ring/component that keeps it together?

I'm trying to retrieve my current odometer reading off this, but will install a VDO down the road.
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  #16  
Old April 4th, 2011, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Overlander View Post
Given that ECR no longer does this, does anyone know if the ribbon can just be trimmed and reinserted in the ribbon port? Is there a way to open up the speedo and without damaging the ring/component that keeps it together?

I'm trying to retrieve my current odometer reading off this, but will install a VDO down the road.


Had this done a couple years ago (sorry for the way-late post!) and just sourced this out again for a new D-90 friend. Turns out this company still has the parts. They're called North Hollywood Speedometer in California. I was local and they did it for me same-day for $160. They will swap out the display (it's actually the body casing with the display imbedded inside), double-check calibration/functionality etc and ship it back to you. They won't sell the display casing separately, but I can understand that they would want to know the job was done once and correctly.

Ask for Kevin or Patrick. Here is their contact information and a link to a few customer reviews on Yelp.com
My display has been perfect ever since! Great shop, great guys and great service. Hope this helps!

Best,
Paul

North Hollywood Speedometer & Clock Co.
6111 Lankershim Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91606
(818) 761-5136

http://www.yelp.com/biz/north-hollyw...orth-hollywood

------ Follow up post added April 4th, 2011 06:06 PM ------

Almost forgot,

Because they are only replacing the display, your odometer reading stays in tact.
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  #17  
Old April 4th, 2011, 02:28 PM
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Yep, just called them and they are still doing it. $250. Pulling mine tonight to send out tomorrow.
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  #18  
Old April 4th, 2011, 02:48 PM
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Yep, just called them and they are still doing it. $250. Pulling mine tonight to send out tomorrow.

Mine went out today. Spoke with Kevin.
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  #19  
Old April 4th, 2011, 07:35 PM
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Damn, I need to get this done. Mine is getting worse. Price sure did go up though.
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  #20  
Old April 5th, 2011, 02:39 AM
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The new VDO aftermarket Speedo is only $110 and works great. Only issue is you no longer have the original odometer mileage...not a big deal for me.
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