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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm taking a course in cnc this semester and have been given the go ahead to design and cut a new gauge cluster for my car. this will not be like that crappy sheetmetal one someone was trying to sell on here but will be a full 3d one which hopefully will replace the cluster and the clear plastic piece and mate up without any gaps. my options for materials are either plastic or aluminum. I guess my question is for those that have already replaced their gauges with autometers, how have they done it from a wiring perspective. were they able to just tie into the existing wires and have everything work hunky dorry or did they have to do something custom for the speedo and tach? thanks for the help, Dave
 

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the existing cluster has a somewhat complicated integration board, since the gauges plug into the board with pronged contacts. Me thinks it would be quite a project to do. But, if you have the schematics from the EVTM and a bit of wiring talent, then do it to it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
that's what had me curious, i'm pretty sure whoever i heard about doing it before either tied their gauges into the existing wires or ran all new senders, just which i knew which and had they made the comp happy :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
looking into autometer's tech pages it would seem that for the odometer anyway you actually measure off a 2 mile segment of road and set the it by driving it with the gauge set in a certain mode. so maybe i'm lucky enough to get away with easily programming that. now its just a matter of keeping the computer from beeping about the airbags which don't work anyway. if you guys want i can post pics of the cluster as i design and eventually cut it.
 

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I'd be interested in seeing pictures - especially of the final product.

And as far as wiring - I've wired up oil psi and trans temp - neither were very difficult. The hard part is actually just keeping track which wires are which when your dumb enough to use the same color wire for it all :) I'll be doing water temp, volts, and boost/vac in the next few months (I hope)

-Melon
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
yup, i've done trans temp and oil pressure. my only concern is when i actually replace the originals will the computer have anything to say about the original gauge not being there and also most likely i won't run any dummie lights, just o/d, brights, and turn signals. haven't really decided on that one yet, depends on how much room i end up having
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
would that be just the wiring schematics for the harness that plugs into the gauge cluster?? if so i could definitely use it
 

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I was looking into doing the same thing on my 97 which has a 94 cluster in it right now. None of the computers will care what you do to the cluster except for the airbag monitor. If your bags don't work anyway then just disconnect the harness from the comp and it will shut up. Personally I'm going to keep most of my warning lights on a separate panel (i.e. airbag, alt, o/d, brake, etc.)
Now...oil, temp, volts, RPM gauges are easy enough. I am worried about the speedo and fuel gauge. The stock fuel gauge sender will not work with the autometer gauge I don't think. I was thinking a nice fuel cell with aftermarket sender...

I suppose one could just run the autometer speed sensor if it will even fit in our trans...but the computer needs the signal from the stock sender to run the auto trans plus a few other things. If you figure out a way to run both sensors, stock sensor for the computer and aftermarket sender for the autometer, then we'll be all set to run aftermarket gauges.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
as i understand it according to autometers website, for the speedometer/odometer, you should just tie it into the original wires, then you have to mark off a stretch of continuous road that is marked exactly at 2 miles. i spose a stretch of gravel road would be the safest for this. then there's a test procedure where you put the odometer in a program mode and drive the stretch in a predetermined matter (autometer tells you how) then when you are done the odometer is set to 2 miles and the speedo will run according to what it now knows is two miles worth.
 

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Trust me, you can wire the AutoMeter gauges to work off of the factory cluster feed. It's been done, and put in a nice plug and play package for the Mustang guys.

SEE!

There's a guy that runs regularly at my home track that has that cluster....it is NICE. You could do the same thing for a Bird/Cougar, but you'd have to be comfortable with wiring it yourself.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
that's what i like to see, that tells me i sure as hell ought to be able to make it work with all the factory gimics intact. i'm trying to get into communication with autometer about how they did that and who knows, maybe if mine works out perfect maybe they'd be interested in making that a prototype :D wishful thinking i know but who knows if there's enough demand and the price is right they might just do it.
 

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Ah, but that Autometer cluster uses the factory electronics...so the gauges are still just as crappy. The oil gauge uses the stock on/off switch, voltmeter doesn't reflect the actual voltage, etc. How autometer did it is to use the factory connector and odometer module to run the cluster, so you basically have a factory cluster with fancy faces. I'm not saying I don't love the look, but seriously...when you turn the key on with the engine off and the voltmeter reads the same as if the engine was running-I have a problem with that, lol.

A custom cluster using the "real" gauges will be much more accurate. :D
 

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I think his point was, you can use the factory wiring for the things you want to. Anything you feel needs to be better, feel free to wire a new sender. I think the biggest concern was the speedo and the fuel gauge. Both of these can be triggered in the same way the factory ones are. If you want the other gauges wired seperately, then just don't wire them to the factory harness, it's that simple.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Toombs said:
I think his point was, you can use the factory wiring for the things you want to. Anything you feel needs to be better, feel free to wire a new sender. I think the biggest concern was the speedo and the fuel gauge. Both of these can be triggered in the same way the factory ones are. If you want the other gauges wired seperately, then just don't wire them to the factory harness, it's that simple.

Mike
thats exactly what i mean, should be able to have all the dummy lights and turn signal lights working properly and the speedo and fuel
 

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Now only if it was this easy for those of us with the digital dashes.
 

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I've been wondering about swapping gauges with mine, and/ or replacing that crap-a$$ film circuit board POS with REAL wires that won't break/ snap/ become brittle with heat, so that I will get a reliable signal from wire harness to gauge.....especially for my odometer.....
 

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I'm glad to hear that about the speedos using the stock sensor. Now I'm definately considering removing the stock cluster in favor of a custom one.

coggonobrien, if you get that custom unit done, let's see some pics and an estimate of how much it will cost. I'd just want the bare cluster of course, no gauges/wiring installed.
 
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