Custom speedometer in "Cubefx"'s smart fortwo...
So, I purchased my car off lease, my warranty runs out in 8,000 miles, and I've been bitten by the modding bug once again. While my other car parts arrive (ever seen a trailer hitch on a smart car? You will soon) I'm beginning to finish a mod almost two years in the making.
I've been working off and on on this project since late 2012, and now I've finally got around to implementing it into my car.
I've been designing custom speedometers for my car using GIMP (too cheap for PhotoShop) and have narrowed my favourites down to three.
So far, the current designs call for laser printing on paper, then attaching transparencies on the back so the LED lighting doesn't bleed through areas it isn't supposed to go.
This works all fine and dandy, but I'm not a fan of having to look at a paper speedometer. Then there's the issue of humidity and fading.
So, in a search for a better quality material, I've come up with a couple other ideas
1. Laminate the paper on top (this at least offers some protection and makes it look better). Matte laminate would look great, almost like a factory job.
2. Colour transparencies - Okay, so I'm using a Fedex Office store to print my black transparencies (for the light control) and thought, why not print the actual speedometer face as a transparency too! That way, the transparency channels in the speedometer face will be transparent instead of the colour of the paper it's printed on.
3. And finally, I have the crazy idea of getting it screen printed on some sort of material.
As I'm not too knowledgeable about printing, my questions for you Oppoheads are about #2 and #3. I didn't get any usable results from Google, so why not try Oppo!!!
About #2: Is it possible for colour transparencies? Including white?
About #3: Is this even possible? If so, what would be the best material for the application at hand?
And for those wanting to design their own speedometer faces, all you need is a template of your speedometer and a photo editing program like GIMP or Photoshop, some steady hands, and the ability to easily access your instrument cluster. A general how-to could be found here (yes, I know it's for smarts, but it can be easily adapted for any car really).