Electrical problem / 1987 560 SEL

After the 'exterior light failure' lamp came on briefly, a little bit of white smoke came out of the dashboard and it smelled like an electrical fire but stopped. Then the Speedometer, RPM meter, the oil pressure and
temperature gauge and the fuel indicator went dead. (Even the odometer) The car is running well except for a feeping noise that only stops when the indicator light is turned on. Any suggestions of how I can fix it myself ? Might it just be a burned out module ?
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It may be a fuse that needs replacing although but that needs to be done with care as it sounds like there is a reason it went.
David

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David:
Thanks for the input. The fusebox is in the engine compartment therefore the smoke should not have been in the dash. It might be a more serious issue........ Thanks again !
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Ah well, you've let the smoke out haven't you? Now you're in trouble, you have to get ot back in there.
Sounds like a trace in the instrument cluster fried. Pull the cluster and solder in a shunt (small wire) to go over the burnt trace. It would surprise me greatly if it was more thana burnt trace.
What's more disturbing is the source of the problem. You need to find this or it's gonna eat another instrument cluster.
126 wiring is very stable, but when you add on stuff to it all bets go out the door. Made any changes recently?
What stuff got aded on after it left the factory?
I sat this because I cound a 21 year old speakerphone connection in mine that had caused me bizarre electrical problems for years.
Get a schematic and a volt meter and go chase it down. Here's how to pull the cluster:
    http://articles.mbz.org/instrument /
--
Need Mercedes parts ? - http://parts.mbz.org
Richard Sexton | Mercedes stuff: http://mbz.org
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Richard: Thanks that is very helpful. I did pull the instrument cluster and could not detect any sign of a burned trace. I will try to replace the unit yet it does not explain the feeping noise from behind the dash ( which, after I pulled the instrument cluster, did not go away, was below the panel and only goes away if the indicator light is on ....... ???!!!) The only added things are a phone and an after market, radio which both have been in there for years without causing a problem. The car did get broken into a while ago (drivers side door) and since then the fuse for the doorlocks, interior light etc keeps blowing so I did not replace it)
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It is the Multi Purpose Relay for Flasher, Wipers and rear defrost ( part # 201 821 01 47 ) in the rear fuse box. Apparently it is in charge of the overload protection and went bad. part is available for about $60 - $70 @ mercedes-parts-direct.com
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