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Thread: Integrated new boost gauge into my dash

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6,368

    Integrated new boost gauge into my dash

    Well, it took a lot of work, but I've finally finished one of my projects for the car.
    The followin pictures shows the original length of the male spade connectors used to power the LED back-lighting of the gauge (these originally stuck out of the back of the gauge):

    I drilled the hole in the center of the gauge so the new power wires shown below could be routed out of the back of the gauge.

    This picture shows that the male spades have been shortened so that they fit inside of the gauge housing:


    Here's the final test fitting of the bezel. I had to ground down the inside of the bezel far enough for the bezel to sit flat without toughing the gauge. I estimate I removed about 3/16" of the bezel, as well as cutting the gauge housing all the way back to the face of the actual gauge.


    Since the hose barb for the new gauge is about 3/8" lower than the factory gauge, going straight out of the back of the gauge caused the hose barb to interfere with stuff behind the cluster. I ended up with this configuration. There "might" have been enough room to go straight out if I could have located a 1/8" FPT x 3/16" hose barb adapter locally, but all I could find was male pipe thread adapter and then had to use a coupling....way too long. I double wire-tied the boost line onto the fitting after installed.


    Autometer sells a device that is used to dim their LED gauges. I bought that and wired it so that the illumination level was similar to the factory gauges. I might have been able to disassemble the gauge even further and try to color the LEDs green to attempt to match the rest of the dash, but I didn't want to take the $75 risk to buy another gauge if I couldn't put it back together.
    Kurt K (e-mail)
    SCCoA Member #: 443
    '92 SC AOD -- 11.521s @ 116.748mph, 2.0 AR power
    . . . . . . . . . -- 13.547s @ 101.01 mph, only w/ bolt-ons
    '95 SC 5spd -- All Stock, except 17" Simmons wheels.
    '90 SC 35th Anny 5spd -- 3rd owner, 16k miles
    2 '89 XR7 5spd's -- on their way out, really!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Spokane Wa
    Posts
    1,209
    wow very very nice.

    good job

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Posts
    6,158
    I did basicly the same thing but made the holes all round and replaced oil and temp gauges as well. To be honest I really dont like my gauges that well. I have been thinking of scrapping the whole thing and buying everything new, speedometer, tach, oil, boost, temp and fuel and doing a real first class all matching instrument cluster. It is an improvement over stock though. Comparing the auto meter boost gauge to the accuracy of the dyno gauge, it reads 2 lbs of boost low which is dissappointing

    Ken

    93 SC Whipple powered 11.648 @ 119.6
    Twin Turbo, air intercooled..yet to see

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Philly
    Posts
    2,420
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt K View Post
    Well, it took a lot of work, but I've finally finished one of my projects for the car.
    The followin pictures shows the original length of the male spade connectors used to power the LED back-lighting of the gauge (these originally stuck out of the back of the gauge):

    I drilled the hole in the center of the gauge so the new power wires shown below could be routed out of the back of the gauge.

    This picture shows that the male spades have been shortened so that they fit inside of the gauge housing:


    Here's the final test fitting of the bezel. I had to ground down the inside of the bezel far enough for the bezel to sit flat without toughing the gauge. I estimate I removed about 3/16" of the bezel, as well as cutting the gauge housing all the way back to the face of the actual gauge.


    Since the hose barb for the new gauge is about 3/8" lower than the factory gauge, going straight out of the back of the gauge caused the hose barb to interfere with stuff behind the cluster. I ended up with this configuration. There "might" have been enough room to go straight out if I could have located a 1/8" FPT x 3/16" hose barb adapter locally, but all I could find was male pipe thread adapter and then had to use a coupling....way too long. I double wire-tied the boost line onto the fitting after installed.


    Autometer sells a device that is used to dim their LED gauges. I bought that and wired it so that the illumination level was similar to the factory gauges. I might have been able to disassemble the gauge even further and try to color the LEDs green to attempt to match the rest of the dash, but I didn't want to take the $75 risk to buy another gauge if I couldn't put it back together.
    Kurt,
    Looks good.....btw autometer sells a green led gauge. It is their GS series. I am looking into those.

    Ken
    1992 Thunderbird SC
    13.322 @ 102.81
    1993 Thunderbird SC 5spd..white
    2002 F350 SD Diesel (SC tow vehicle)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6,368
    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Seegers View Post
    Kurt,
    Looks good.....btw autometer sells a green led gauge. It is their GS series. I am looking into those.

    Ken
    Now you tell me....maybe that will be next year's project.
    Kurt K (e-mail)
    SCCoA Member #: 443
    '92 SC AOD -- 11.521s @ 116.748mph, 2.0 AR power
    . . . . . . . . . -- 13.547s @ 101.01 mph, only w/ bolt-ons
    '95 SC 5spd -- All Stock, except 17" Simmons wheels.
    '90 SC 35th Anny 5spd -- 3rd owner, 16k miles
    2 '89 XR7 5spd's -- on their way out, really!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Long Island, NY 11793
    Posts
    5,112
    Very nice work!! And if memory serves good for about another 2.855 rwhp!

    Ira

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Philly
    Posts
    2,420
    Quote Originally Posted by Kurt K View Post
    Now you tell me....maybe that will be next year's project.
    It was on there website about a year ago. I was looking into DiPricol gauges, but they don't make a vac/boost gauge.

    I have DiPricol gauges on my f350 and love them. They match the factory gauges.
    1992 Thunderbird SC
    13.322 @ 102.81
    1993 Thunderbird SC 5spd..white
    2002 F350 SD Diesel (SC tow vehicle)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Va. Beach,Va.
    Posts
    6,930
    Looks good Kurt, I'm not smart enough to do all that fitting. I had to put my new gauge in the pillar pod..............
    SCCOA Member #2406
    '94 SC AUTO - $$$$ Pit
    http://www.sccoa.com/forums/garage_v..._vehicle&id=19

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Charles, MO
    Posts
    20,889
    Kurt,

    When you first started talking about doing this, I had visions of Mendola's cluster bomb, but it turned out great.

    Seeing as how you seem very comfortable tearing into the instrument cluster, maybe you can help me replace the odometer gears and reset the mileage on a couple of late model speedometers I've aquired for my two SCs.

    David
    1991 SC AOD 4.2..2.3 Whipple..........10.910 @ 125.61
    2016 SRT Challenger Hellcat...............707HP/650TQ

    My Garage

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Southwest of Kansas City
    Posts
    2,264
    Nice work Kurt.
    Jim, SCCoA Member#: 2789

    "cuz Jim has mad skillz, yo!" Melon.
    "You guys crack me up talking about nitrous when you don't even know if you can keep it together on gasoline." XR7 Dave
    "I didn't break it, I found it's weakness."

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    6,368
    Quote Originally Posted by David Neibert View Post
    Kurt,

    When you first started talking about doing this, I had visions of Mendola's cluster bomb, but it turned out great.

    Seeing as how you seem very comfortable tearing into the instrument cluster, maybe you can help me replace the odometer gears and reset the mileage on a couple of late model speedometers I've acquired for my two SCs.

    David
    Getting to the speedometers is easy, but I've never done any of the other working you are talking about.
    Kurt K (e-mail)
    SCCoA Member #: 443
    '92 SC AOD -- 11.521s @ 116.748mph, 2.0 AR power
    . . . . . . . . . -- 13.547s @ 101.01 mph, only w/ bolt-ons
    '95 SC 5spd -- All Stock, except 17" Simmons wheels.
    '90 SC 35th Anny 5spd -- 3rd owner, 16k miles
    2 '89 XR7 5spd's -- on their way out, really!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    3,659
    Wish I would have known this before ordering my pillar and gauges. ~~~~

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Lakeville, MN
    Posts
    13,517
    Great job on that Kurt. takes patience and a subconscious that can come up with an idea once and a while.

    I know I'm not 100% happy with my gauge setup, but it's low on my priority pole.

  14. #14
    Looks great Kurt.
    SCCoA Member #247
    Hardcore TBU #5 (in tow)

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Woodbridge, VA
    Posts
    5,068
    Looks good Kurt. One of these days I'd like to do a whole cluster with auto meter gauges.
    ~Chris
    SCCoA Member #1826
    Bettie Riding jack stands
    SCARlet on drag duty now

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