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Thread: Third Gen Black Faced Meter (BFM) Information - 2015-01-09

  1. #31
    Super Moderator Yamazaki's Avatar
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Just for kicks, here's a list of the Japanese combination meters for the BE/BH:

    12AE001
    12AE100
    12AE110
    12AE010
    12AE020
    12AE040
    12AE041
    12AE050
    12AE051
    12AE060
    12AE070
    12AE090
    13AE010
    13AE030
    13AE040
    15AE010
    15AE020
    15AE030
    15AE040
    15AE050
    15AE060
    15AE070
    15AE080
    15AE090
    15AE270

    There are probably more than that too. I just skimmed through and I tend to miss things when I do that. And these aren't counting the two STI gauges from the catalogues.
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  2. #32
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Well from my understanding the 12* are like the USDM ones, and the 13* are the white faced 300km/h ones, and the 15* are the BFMs, correct?

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    Well from my understanding the 12* are like the USDM ones, and the 13* are the white faced 300km/h ones, and the 15* are the BFMs, correct?
    No. Some of the 12s and 13s are also BFMs. None of them are 300km ones. That's the A~C type STI gauge.
    Current lineup(click on links):
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    Hers: '04 Forester XT / '02 S401

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    Hers: '97 Legacy GT-B Ltd / '05 Mercedes E500 4matic / '02 H6 VDC Sedan

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Well, that certainly complicates things, hah.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    What's funny is, in '98 and '99 only the A/T got the BFM. And only the turbo models. The M/T didn't get it until '00.

    There's all sorts of craziness going on. I can't figure out any particular pattern.
    Current lineup(click on links):
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    I found a guy who did this conversion in Japan for his legacy, and his website has the pinout for the 050 cluster! Google Chrome seems to translate it well enough, so I will take that and make up a new spreadsheet for it as well.

    It also explained the dimming circuit a bit.. even with the horrible Google translate, I think I have the jist of it. I am going to go try a few things with mine to see what I can do with the dimming control.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    So, the dimming works pretty simply, it uses a standard voltage divider in the stalk.

    C2 spits out 5v, and C4 is ground. C3 is an input that depending on the voltage coming back is the brightness.. the closer to 5v, the brighter. If you were to jumper C2 to C3, it would be at full brightness all of the time.

    If you leave it all floating, it is not quite full dark, but pretty close to it. I did a quick test with a 100 kiloohm potentiometer connecting C2 and C4 to the end points and C3 on the variable tap. I think for me personally, setting it to about 66% brightness would be a good setting, I will do this with a 10k and 22k resistor and put those directly on the harness connectors so that it is always that setting.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Here is a nice little piece of information... It turns out that Mouser Electronics sells the connectors used on these clusters.. so we would no longer need to destroy the harness out of another car..

    30 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... UwjrUHA%3d
    16 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... 52bQ%3d%3d
    18 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... RyHA%3d%3d
    14 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... kOMg%3d%3d

    Pins: http://www.mouser.com/Search/ProductDet ... G5-C1-5000

    As for the sockets, for some reason they only have the 14pin socket available.. They have plenty of other configurations, but no 30, 16, or 18 pin versions, but I did shoot an email to Mouser to see if they are planning on carrying them. I am also looking at other vendors as well and I will update this when I find more information.

    EDIT: I found the sockets, all but the 30 are a "stocked but backordered" item. The 30pin is "non stocked" but orderable.

    30 pin: http://www.mouser.com/Search/ProductDet ... 5-30P-D3L2
    16 pin: http://www.mouser.com/Search/ProductDet ... G516PD3L2A
    14 pin: http://www.mouser.com/Search/ProductDet ... G514PD3L2A

  9. #39
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    Here is a nice little piece of information... It turns out that Mouser Electronics sells the connectors used on these clusters.. so we would no longer need to destroy the harness out of another car..

    30 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... UwjrUHA%3d
    16 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... 52bQ%3d%3d
    18 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... RyHA%3d%3d
    14 pin: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... kOMg%3d%3d

    Pins: http://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/JAE ... GBljikw%3d

    As for the sockets, for some reason they only have the 14pin socket available.. They have plenty of other configurations, but no 30, 16, or 18 pin versions, but I did shoot an email to Mouser to see if they are planning on carrying them. I am also looking at other vendors as well and I will update this when I find more information.
    You're my new favorite person.

    The only downside to this path is the lack of factory colored wire.

  10. #40
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Why not tie the Japanese dimmer to the US dimmer? The H6 has a cluster brightness adjustment on the headlight/turn signal stalk... I'm guessing the regular Legacy GT does too.
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by YamazakiSubaru
    I'm guessing the regular Legacy GT does too.
    Mine does, and its the most basic legacy model.

  12. #42
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by amgarrety
    Mine does, and its the most basic legacy model.
    Then there should be corresponding wires for that. The BFM cluster has a dimmer for all the time (not just when the lights are on). Hmm, maybe I should take out the S401's cluster and take a look at it. The cluster itself is completely different of course, but that part should be the same...
    Current lineup(click on links):
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    Hers: '97 Legacy GT-B Ltd / '05 Mercedes E500 4matic / '02 H6 VDC Sedan

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    It does, but I am not so keen on hacking up the multifunction switch.. I know, I know.. I've hacked up much more than that, but... I am really trying not to hack up any of the stock wiring or parts.

    As for the connectors, I agree that the original colors would be nice, but then again if you are careful to do one wire at a time, and you can cut the wire to any length you need, so the harness could be quite a bit neater than the one I ended up with.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    I went to a local junkyard and cut out the wires connecting to the cluster. I still have a bunch left over (I also grabbed a full set from a guy parting out his Legacy GT).
    Current lineup(click on links):
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    Hers: '04 Forester XT / '02 S401

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Unfortunately, most of the junkyards in my neck of the woods won't let you muck around in a car and pull your own stuff. I lucked out with one yard in northern Rhode Island where I bought the 84A cluster that I hacked up, they let me play around in a 2002 Legacy Wagon for a bit which is where I got my harness connectors from.

    I think the only reason they let me on the lot by myself was that they were really light staffed that day.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Well, I have decided to go ahead and hack up the MFS, as it seems that they are quite cheap at local yards if I decide to replace it. I will document that portion as I do the modification.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    I found the sockets on Mouser.com as well with the exception of the 18 pin version. I ordered 2 of each of the sockets and plugs and 50 contacts, the order totaled to just under $28 with shipping for it all.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    I found the sockets on Mouser.com as well with the exception of the 18 pin version. I ordered 2 of each of the sockets and plugs and 50 contacts, the order totaled to just under $28 with shipping for it all.
    For what? Don't you already have everything hooked up?

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    I am going to redo it a little neater.. I was limited to the amount of wire that I had. Some of the wires are quite tight back there, and I am worried that over time they may pull out of the sockets and short with something.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    So, as promised I will detail the dimming connections. Unfortunately, the documentation off the internet did not jive with what I was remembering from when I wired it up, so I pulled it out of the dash again tonight to verify it. It is a good thing too, because the parking light indicator burnt out the day after I put it in so I replaced that while I was in there.

    I also decided to connect the "Power" indicator to the Cruise Set circuit, that way I have some sort of dash indicator for my cruise system again. I choose "Power" because it is green and sort of implies that while cruise is on.. it is "under power".

    Okay, but enough about that.. on to dimming. I originally based my information off of that found on azawd.org, but I found that to be backwards. There was a japanese fellow that did this same conversion using the service manuals as a reference with an 050 cluster, that found the same problem.

    On the multifunction stalk, there are 6 wires that come from the stalk and bridge to the connector, they are Black, Green, Brown, Red, Yellow, and White, in that order. The ones that we care about are the Black, Green, and Brown lines. Tap into these however you want.. I personally soldered 3 wires into one of the openings leading to the connectors, I felt that this was a good place to not interfere with the operation of the stalk and to not have to cut into the cars harness. This is a photo showing the stalk reassembled with my three-conductor cable leading out of it.



    As noted on the photo, the Brown line connects to C2, Green to C3, and Black to C4. The document on azawd has the Brown and Black reversed, which causes the dimming function to be backwards where it is full bright when set to full dim.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    I also decided to connect the "Power" indicator to the Cruise Set circuit, that way I have some sort of dash indicator for my cruise system again. I choose "Power" because it is green and sort of infers that while cruise is on.. it is "under power".
    I was also thinking of doing that, but I was between Power and Steering, even though cruise control has nothing to do with steering.

    Yamazaki - What did you do to get your dimming switch to work without any other modification? Did you hook something else up to C2, C3, and C4?

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by amgarrety
    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    I also decided to connect the "Power" indicator to the Cruise Set circuit, that way I have some sort of dash indicator for my cruise system again. I choose "Power" because it is green and sort of infers that while cruise is on.. it is "under power".
    I was also thinking of doing that, but I was between Power and Steering, even though cruise control has nothing to do with steering.

    Yamazaki - What did you do to get your dimming switch to work without any other modification? Did you hook something else up to C2, C3, and C4?
    No, It seems to work w/out any modifications. I also think I have a cruise control light, because that wasn't one of the two wires I couldn't match up (they are the flashing "Security" light, and the "AT temp oil" light". Everything else matched up). I haven't tried cruise control. yet though. Also, I happened to be in luck. The old mileage was 151779, and the new odometer read 151633 when I put it in.

    The bad thing is that I'm getting no power to the tach or engine temp because the needles don't move. This weekend, I'm going to try out the spare gauge set I brought with me and see if it's the cluster that's broken of I messed up somewhere.
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Just to be clear, the basic function of "dimming" is controlled by the purple wire, so that when the headlights are on it does dim the lighting, but it is non-adjustable. I believe by default, the voltage on the purple wire is varied depending on the setting on the MFS stalk, but my particular cluster does not seem to respond to voltage differences on that pin. It is either just dimming on, or dimming off.

    C2, 3, and 4 control the variable brightness of the backlighting. If you leave them floating, the brightness of the cluster defaults to almost fully dim when purple is active. Since I have the habit of driving around with at least my parking lights on, it made the cluster very difficult to see during the day.

    Now that I have these connected up, I leave my dash dimming control on the MFS set to the middle setting, and I can see it very well both with and without the parking lights on.

    YamazakiSubaru: The other thing I wonder is, does the dimming control change your brightness also when the parking lights/headlights are off without C2-C4 wired up? I am not really sure how it would get that control without it..

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Quote Originally Posted by rkrenicki
    YamazakiSubaru: The other thing I wonder is, does the dimming control change your brightness also when the parking lights/headlights are off without C2-C4 wired up? I am not really sure how it would get that control without it..
    No, I can't adjust the brightness if the headlights are off. In the S401, I can adjust it whether the lights are on or off.
    Current lineup(click on links):
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    Hers: '04 Forester XT / '02 S401

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    Hers: '97 Legacy GT-B Ltd / '05 Mercedes E500 4matic / '02 H6 VDC Sedan

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    It must do a voltage sense on that line. With the three additional lines, it is adjustable properly both with and without the lights on.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    So, I am working on sorting all the pinouts that I have for the 050 and 090 meters, and I noticed that the 090 has C2 and C4 reversed in colors..

    That explains why my dimming control was backwards from the azawd documentation, as it looks like the +12v and gnd wires are reversed on the 020 and 030 compared to the 090. I do not have the color codes for the 050 so I am not sure which one it matches up with.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Okay, so as promised, here is the procedure to remove the pins on the harness connectors.

    Pictured here is the 14 pin "C" connector that came with my BFM, I will use this for the tutorial.


    First, there are comb-like clips that rotate out of the back of the connector on each of the long sides, use a small flathead screwdriver, and pry them away. The back side will come away before the front edges will.


    There is one of these on each side, this photo shows them both open.


    Now you are halfway there.. If you look at the end of the connector, there are 4 rows of holes.. the two rows in the middle are the contacts themselves, the outer 2 rows give you access to the retention clips for each connector. Push a thick paperclip or very thin screwdriver into the outer hole that lines up with the wire you are trying to remove, that will release the clips and the wire should pull out.


    Even with both clips released, it was still a little tough to pull the pins out.. Don't be prissy with it, give it a tug and it will come out. I was surprised how much pulling it would take and not break.

  28. #58
    Administrator rkrenicki's Avatar
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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    I ordered a pair of the 18pin connectors from Mouser since the 090 that I have on the way uses that for the "C"... and I realized that I completely ordered the wrong contacts.. I bought the Male Pin contacts, instead of the Female Socket contacts.. the correct contacts are the IL-AG5-C1-5000.. the pins are PC1-5000.. all the difference for one little letter.

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    Well, my 090 cluster is finally on its way from Japan to the US. I have actual EMS tracking now and everything.. even if it is several days late at this point..

    But, bad news is that I just received an email from mouser telling me that the 30pin connector has been delayed and I may not necessarily get all of my connectors by January 30th.

    I already have the 18pin here, and the correct contacts will be here tomorrow it looks like, so I may just re-use the harness that I have and do this next week instead of in January/Febuary..

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    Re: Yet another BFM install thread!

    At least the USDM part stays the same, so as far as re-pinning goes, you just need to pull the pins out of the male connector and switch them a bit, which is cake. I did that for my driver/passenger door ajar wires and it took me all of 30 seconds.

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