The Sun: The prerequisite for all life, and the destroyer of LCDs! The photo below shows what prolonged exposure can do to a LCD – and it’s not pretty. It looks like someone took a blow torch to this one!
Click on the photo for a better view.
The large circular “fried spot” is UV radiation damage to the polarization films on the LCD glass. It takes quite a while for it to get this bad. Had the protective cover been in place this would not have happened.
Sidebar: We are seeing the same kind of damage to older Furuno units such as the FCV-582L, the GP-1650 and GP-1850 series LCDs – even if the protective cover is in place! The white plastic cover is not enough to stop the intense UV radiation found in Southern latitudes. Coating the inside of the cover with a layer of metal based duct tape seems to be the most effective countermeasure.
The owner of this E120 unknowingly faced quite a dilema. When I last consulted with Raymarine (quite some time ago), they no longer had access to replacement LCD assemblies. Assuming they did, this repair would no doubt be subject to their published flat rate repair of $1725.00 had he sent it to them. Ouch!
This LCD is an unusual beast. Raymarine modified an “off the shelf” LCD and added a high output “light Box” that produces an image intense enough to be seen in strong daylight. This repair is NOT for newbies! It’s MUCH more involved than turning screws and plugging connectors.
Sourcing a suitable replacement was quite a challenge. The part is not cheap and it required considerable “processing” in order to get it into a compatible state. It is v e r y delicate business, and it is extremely easy to wreck the new LCD during the installation process. I speak from experience…
Another successful repair!
UV radiation is not the only way a LCD can meet it’s end. If a defined section of the display suddenly or intermittently goes dark, that’s usually a good indication that the LCD driver circuitry has failed. If “Ink Spots” show up, that indicate the LCD glass is delaminating, likely due to physical damage. Both condition require LCD replacement in order to restore normal operation.
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