View Full Version : tripminder

04-30-2005, 09:42 AM
Is it possible that you can take one out of a crown vic or grand marq and put it in one that does not orginally come with it? Like all the other stuff on my car i noticed the wiring is always there you just have tyo hook it up. And to describe what im talkin about it goes where the clock is and shows miles, fuel economy stuff like that. Any help on this would b appreciated. I want to get one the next time i go to a yard.

04-30-2005, 11:43 AM
you sure the wiring is there? wheres it at? whats it look like? I couldnt find mine.

04-30-2005, 11:44 AM
It was more so of a question.. A guy with a thunderbird told me he didnt have one but the wiring was there for itway back in the dash or whatever..

04-30-2005, 12:04 PM
I looked around the clock wiring and I found a 194 bulb socket that comes on with the parking lights, so I guess that was for the analouge clock.
I didnt see any other wires, BUT Ive heard the wires are supposed to be there for us too. I just might not have had the option, becuase my box has dealer added power windows and locks, so maybe I have a base model vic??? I dunno.

The LT
04-30-2005, 02:35 PM
I tried this very thing, I got it to light up, the calender working, the timer working, and those basic operations, but in order to get the fule mileage and such to work I was told I'd have to splice into wires near the tranny if I remember correctly. But it still looks better than the old analogue clock!

Hope that helps, I'm sure some electronic wiz wil answer the question better.


04-30-2005, 04:32 PM
Is this the same tripminder that comes in a Mark 7, or is it different ?

04-30-2005, 10:48 PM
I'm going to do this very thing to my GM. As far as the wiring already being there... it's possible, but I haven't really spent a lot of time looking for mine.

I did quite a bit of research on installing the tripminder already, and here's what I came up with:

Existing wiring harness
I found a flat, 10 pin connector under my dash just above the brake pedal bracket, but it didn't fit onto the tripminder I pulled out of a CV from the junkyard (it was keyed differently). This connector had enough slack in the harness to where I could see it being able to reach the center of the dash.

T-Birds and other cars use a completely different harness for the tripminder than panthers do (theirs has a "box" 10-pin connector that you have to modify, or make an adapter harness to the flat 10 pin connector). I could be wrong about this tidbit because I didn't really look that much into it because I don't own a T-bird, but from what I've found by searching that's what I think.

Does it matter if you have the harness or not?
4 of the 6 wires needed for the tripminder are already there. All you have to do is add two more wires.

One wire should be spliced in to the existing wire that resides in pin34 to the ECM. Pin34 is used for monitoring the fuel system. The wire is Light Blue with a purple stripe.

The second wire splices into one of the 2 wires that come off the speed sensor at the end of the speedo cable at the transmission. That wire is Dark Green with a white stripe.

The actual colors of your wires may be different, but Ford typically keeps the color codes pretty much the same throughout the years unless they have a damn good reason to change them. The diagram I have for an '87 5.0 box is pretty much identical to what I've seen so far on my '86 5.0 GM.... colors and all.

Now on my '86 MGM I didn't have a speed sensor because I didn't have cruise control. So I picked up a speed sensor from the yard.

Here's a diagram for the tripminder I cropped from a wiring schematic for an '87 box with a 5.0.

Without the two additional wires connected the tripminder will still work, but the functions associated with fuel economy/remaining will not.

There's 2 things I still don't know.

-The 10 pin connector in my car may be ok, but I have to spend a little quality time with it and a meter to verify it.

-I don't know if I need to install a cruise control amplifier to work with the speed sensor. I don't think I'll need do, but until I actually try it on my next day off I can only take an educated guess.

I plan to install cruise control on my GM, and so far I have all the parts necessary except for a clean, blue steering wheel with the buttons. So until I find the wheel I need I plan to install the tripminder anyway.

Hope this helps!

My next day off will be tuesday so I should know more then after I play around with it for a while.


05-01-2005, 01:17 AM
thanks pablito!

Grand Marquis GT
05-01-2005, 02:15 AM
he speaks! :eek:

05-01-2005, 03:49 AM
^^^^^^ :lol: :lol: :lol:

according to my evtm for an 84, the harness is indeed back there. you have to lift off the upper dash to see it tho, i've heard if your car doesn't have one. for us, it should be plug and play. if i can get a hold of a flatbed scanner i'll scan the orresponding pages

05-01-2005, 10:56 AM
Has anyone on the forum succesfuly installed on fully working in a cv or gm that didnt originally had one if so give me the details if you please..I know the fuel economy wire is number 34 on the EEC-IV harness its suppose to be light blue with a pink stripe. The speed sensor wire is suppose to be located behind the speedometer and color dark green with white stripe. If i missed anything let me know i found a tripminder at the junkyard and i got the harness.. So the power and all the basics i got squared away just the last two wires.

Also check this out http://www.coolcats.net/tech/advanced/tripminder.html

05-01-2005, 05:03 PM
i **think** the tripminders came out in 83. i know they were discontinued after the 89 model year because if the dash redesign in the 90-91's

05-01-2005, 05:53 PM
i **think** the tripminders came out in 83.
You could be right. The part number on my tripminder is E3AF-BLAH-BLAH-BLAH.

The speed sensor wire is suppose to be located behind the speedometer and color dark green with white stripe.
The green / white wire from the speed sensor plugs into the cruise control harness that comes through the firewall right near the brake booster.

Inside the car that harness plugs into the cruise control amplifier that has it's own bracket right next to the ECM. In that harness the colors are still the same for that wire (green/white).


05-01-2005, 06:00 PM
Oh yeah... if you don't have sruise control from the factory you won't have a speed sensor so you also won't have the dark green / white wire needed.

So take a peek under your car to see if you have the speed sensor or not.


05-02-2005, 01:49 AM
Yes i have cruise control and i will get workin on it tomorrow

05-03-2005, 12:34 AM
In order to install the tripminder, you will need to remove the dashpad, along with the usual stuff required to pull the old clock assembly.after the pad is removed, you will see the sensor for the automatic headlamps directly behind the instrument panel.Using a short phillips screwdriver, remove the two screws holding the sensor in place, and move to the side. Just under that, is the plug already in place for the tripminder. You might have to look through the windshield from the outside to actually see it, like I did. Of course this also applies if you are removing one from another box to install in your own. IIRC, there was one of those plastic pins between the tripminder, and the connector, that held the harness to the underside of the sheetmetal sub dash, but i didn't bother rehooking it when putting everything back together. The actual harness branches off in two directions. Left to the plug for the tripminder, and back to the clock harness. BTW, my tripminder works great, and i don't have a hacked up harness. Just remember, this applies to 89, and earlier boxes.

05-03-2005, 12:42 AM
:clap: :clap: so for anybody looking to put one in, its a piece of cake. chrsitine already has one tho,lol. the only prob is if you don't have factory cruise

05-03-2005, 04:25 PM
Well I got around to tinkering with my GM today, but got a really late start (like an hour ago), and here's what I found.

My car doesn't have the harness for the tripminder. I pulled apart the dash to see if it was hidden behind anything, and it was nowhere to be found.

I also checked the plug I found under the dash that I thought would be for the tripminder, but it just wouldn't work. First because it has way too many wires needed for the TM, and secondly because the plug physically wouldn't fit due to it being keyed differently.

I'm guessing that for the plug to be factory installed, and just waiting to be used hidden in the dash you have to have cruise control installed from the factory. It kind of makes sense because without the speed sensor necessary for the cruise control to function the tripminder wouldn't work anyway.

So I'm going to have to modify the existing harness.

It's not that big of a deal really. I only have to add 2 wires to the existing harness, and splice in the new plug. (along with adding the VSS and splicing into pin 34 at the ECM)

Being that I'm really lazy, and got such a late start today I'm just going to add the new harness, mount the tripminder, and leave lengths of wire coiled up behind the dash for the VSS and the fuel so that whenever I get around to it I wouldn't have to pull the dash apart again.

Also while I had everything apart I figured I'd fix a couple of gremlins in the instrument cluster, and install new speakers.

More to come later....


Grand Marquis GT
05-03-2005, 04:28 PM
:eek: This is a great article!


05-03-2005, 05:11 PM
I have cruise control and i still dont see it somewhere they say its taped up teh teh other wires so you will have to un ravel the tape to unvail it.. I dunno i goin back outside to finish up and see if i find it if not then i'll just put shit back together for now.

05-03-2005, 10:40 PM

The Tripminder is in, but not complete. :crazy:

I ran into a stumbling block with the actual Tripminder unit itself. After I spliced in the new 10 plug I decided to test it out before I put everything back together. I'm sure glad I did because none of the buttons on the TM worked! :cuss:

When I pulled it from a car in the yard I just put a battery to the unit just to see if was dead or not.

So.... I had to pull the unit apart to clean the contacts for each button.

Each button is simply a dimpled piece of metal mounted over a contact soldered on the PCB. I just ran a piece of sandpaper between the contact, and the dimpled metal to scrape off all the oxidation.

Before I reassembled the TM I temporarily wired it up to test the buttons.
It worked! :banana:

So being that the TM was all apart I also cleaned the LCD glass, and the tinted, plastic window on the housing.

Here it is as of now.

Like with others that installed the TM only the clock, calendar, and Elapsed time work. I added the two wires needed for the rest of the functions to the plug, wrapped them in black tape, snaked them under the dash, and zip tied them out of the way until I can finish the project (which hopefully will be tomorrow).

So anyway... 'till tomorrow....


05-04-2005, 02:28 AM
Ok i found the vss wire its dark green with a white strip and I found it coming from the side of the tranny.Its hooked up to teh tripminder harness. Now that leaves me with one wire the fuel flow i pulled the harness off the EEC-IV and no pin 34 wire nothing is at pin 34...Now im lost any help?

05-04-2005, 06:38 PM
Now that leaves me with one wire the fuel flow i pulled the harness off the EEC-IV and no pin 34 wire nothing is at pin 34...Now im lost any help?

I'm probably going to face the same thing, but I haven't looked at the ECM yet. If I don't have anything in pin 34 like you don't I'll just grab an ECM connector out of a junker just to get a metal pin for the harness to add for the TM.

I cropped another segment of a wiring diagram for the pin out of the ECM. It looks like pin 34 is used ONLY for the Tripmnder.

If that's the case then just disconnect the battery, unbolt the 10MM bolt that holds the connector to the ECM, and add a pin w/wire. Then route the the newly installed wire through a grommet (the cruise control grommet would be nice), and run it to the Tripminder.
... and that's it! :jumpin:


05-04-2005, 06:48 PM
Sounds like a plan. I was mad as hell after i got that far and no wire.. Is teh pins easy to get out? I'll try it at a junk yard this weekend before i do it to my oown car.I see we are the heads on this project..LOL I guess everyone is waitin to see if we get ours workin correct.

Grand Marquis GT
05-04-2005, 06:58 PM
You guys rock! :headbang:

05-04-2005, 07:26 PM
I was mad as hell after i got that far and no wire.. Is teh pins easy to get out?
If it was easy everyone would have it!

Actually.. ya gotta admit.. this is actually pretty easy stuff. I mean.. two wires?

I haven't pulled or added any wires to an ECM connector yet, but I can't imagine it being that hard. The pin is probably just like any other.. just slip an awl or similar pionty object into the pin to remove it from the old harness, and snap it into the new one. Then just pud a dab of silicone over it to protect it being that it's not inside the passenger compartment.

To be really slick find a wire on the junk ECM connector that's long enough, and has the same colors to run directly to the TM! :cool:

If it wasn't raining as hard as it is now I'd head out there now. Looks like I'll get to it friday night after work.

You'll see... once it works you'll be happy you did it! :beer:


05-04-2005, 07:46 PM
Lol hell yea. But the pins are on teh ecm it self not the harness? and pm me ur aim or yahoo name so we can discuss this a lil later i gotta run.

05-04-2005, 07:59 PM
The ECM should already have it. You just have to add the pin to the harness to make use of it.

05-04-2005, 11:05 PM
Oh ok yeah i understand. But check this out i pulled apart my tripminder to clean the contacts and now when i got it all back together the damn thing dont even work .. Wont even come on. So i'll be goin to another yard lookin for ojne hope I dont have a hard time finding it.

05-05-2005, 07:06 PM
UPDATE:I found another tripminder at a yard today and it worked with no problem. I also hooked up the VSS wire and the speed part works now i just gotta work on that "fuel flow" wire.

05-05-2005, 10:09 PM

05-07-2005, 11:48 AM
I have one of these in my 89 LX and the buttons are a pain to work. I have to push in and move them around to get them to work. How big a deal is it to take it apart and clean it? I can take a motor apart and put it back trogether again, but all the little wires and things like that are a no no!

05-07-2005, 05:24 PM
Just use a small piece of sand paper... Its not hard at all just be careful and dont be like me and work on it on the carpet i think my last one got static discharge from the carpet or my body. :coocoo:

05-08-2005, 11:24 PM

All functions now work.

First I installed the speed sensor, and ran the wires to it using the factory routing. I thought that this would be the easiest part of the project, but it turned out quite different. For some reason I couldn't get the end of the speedo cable into the VSS. After a couple of quick measurements with some calipers I determined that it wasn't going to happen without some modifying.

Remembering that the VSS I got from the yard came out of a later model box I looked to see what years had what VSS. The '86 carried a different part number that the later years. So I decided to just bite the bullet and buy a new VSS ($18) for an '86.

Well.. I had the same problem with the new VSS. :crazy:

I ended up boring out the old VSS to 7/16" with a drill bit, and everything slid right into place.

OK.. now for the fuel imput (Pin #34).

I found a Blue/Lt. Purple wire dangling next to the ECM harness. The colors were right, but I didn't think I would be so lucky as to find a connector already set up for the tripminder. So I disconnected the ECM harness, and took a closer look.

I traced the wire back to.... you guessed it.. Pin #34! :banana:

Here's what I had after I reconnected the ECM harness...

From there on in it was simply a matter of hooking these two up to the Tripminder (Well.. 3 wires if you count the ground wire for the VSS).

I ran the wires through the grommet used for the cruise control harness, and routed everything along some existing wiring behind the dash for a factory setup.

Then it was time for a test drive.


Life is good. :D


Grand Marquis GT
05-08-2005, 11:31 PM

05-09-2005, 12:51 AM
Yeah i have the odometer part workin and it shows teh average mph but teh gas part im fucked.. lol I wasnt as lucky as you to even have a wire in pin 34..

05-09-2005, 01:07 AM
Then just add one. It shouldn't take too long.

You can even buy the correct terminal that's used in the EEC harness.

Or you can just grab one off a junker and slip in into slot 34. You'll just have to drill a hole for the wire in the cap (the light blue shroud you see in my pics).

BTW... are you sure you don't have anything in the harness for pin 34?


05-09-2005, 12:05 PM
Man trust me im 100%sure i have nothing in the harness for pin 34.. Also my cover on mine is yellow not blue like urs.. But yeah i will have to add that wire soon, where u get that connector from thou?

05-09-2005, 01:11 PM
where u get that connector from thou?

I don't know of any "local" parts stores to get them, but for .35 each you can get some here:

BTW... that's a great site run by a guy named Ryan who's from what I've seen from the past few years on a Bronco forum a very knowledgeable, and stand-up guy.

05-09-2005, 05:25 PM
Yea its really informative that guy either knows his shit or knows were to find his shit lol...

05-09-2005, 08:11 PM
hats off to you pablito!!! :clap:

After first reading this I ran out to see if I had a fuel wire dangling from my ECM harness, but like Nate I did not, and I am sad :(

BUT! fiddling around in that area gave me an inspiration boost to clean up that fenderwell, so maybe while I have the cruise ball off I might feel brave enough to go poking into my ECM harness conector :crazy:
Maybe Ill go poke around in one at the junkyard first...

Also while I was bonding with the fender well today, I popped apart one of its wire harness connectors and discovered you can remove/add pins into those too!
Now I can remove the stock oil/temp sender wires completely without having to damage them!!!
I know thats nothing special but it makes me soooo happy :coocoo:

05-09-2005, 11:42 PM
Yea Pete why we cant have a wire at pin 34 for our fuel flow.. Pablito what year is ur car? And remember he has a Grand Marquis

05-10-2005, 09:21 AM
Also while I was bonding with the fender well today, I popped apart one of its wire harness connectors and discovered you can remove/add pins into those too!

Yeah you can do that for just about every (if not all) connectors in the whole car.

Makes it pretty easy to make your own harnesses with factory connectors.

Everytime I'm at a yard pulling parts I'll snip off a few connectors for future use.


05-15-2005, 03:37 PM

check out this thread on that other site...


and here is a copy of my reply:

I assumed the position under the dash, and sure enough a scoped out the 'little guy' (blue wire, purple stripe) with an empty connector, taped to a harness behind the speedo.
Likewise, I found a 3 wire connector with two wires in it, one of them green with a white stripe. these were part of a wiring harness that went through the firewall with a big fat vacuum line to the speedo ball. The harness also split off into a small black module that sits next to the ECM, which I assume is the cruise computer!

Nate: I saw the 'litte guy' from under the dash... you should see if you got him!!! maybe you just missed it when you looked at your ECM harness.

All: I think there are three trimpinder at my yard... i will soo be offering tested working tripminders with harness for say.... $30 shipped???

05-15-2005, 03:45 PM
hey Pablito!!

eeemmm.... :crazy:

you wouldn't want to figure out how to apply trimpinder inputs to a towncar message center, part of the digi speedo, would you ??? :D :D :D

05-15-2005, 08:46 PM
I will get on the fuel flow tomorrow and will post my results

05-17-2005, 11:30 PM
cant use it - who wants it? $30 for the one with harness, $25 for the one with just pigtails


05-20-2005, 02:21 AM
factory shop manual scan courtesy of Rexx


06-16-2005, 09:13 PM
Anyone have any luck adding pin #34 yet?
I clipped an ECM harness off a junker that has the #34 wire w/connector if anyone wants it.

Without it all of the fuel functions of the tripminder wont work.

On a side note I found out why I had to bore out the VSS on mine. Cars with cruise control have a different speedometer cable than those without.

So far after a month and a half it's still working flawlessly, and I'm amazed at how acurate the damn thing is!


06-16-2005, 10:04 PM
naw i havent bother messin wit it in a while.. But if you use that harness dont you have to splice it on wire by wire?

06-17-2005, 06:08 PM
naw i havent bother messin wit it in a while.. But if you use that harness dont you have to splice it on wire by wire?

Nope... All you'd have to do is add the one single pin to your existing ECM connector.

The harness I clipped has thePIN #34 wire w/factory connector.

06-17-2005, 07:44 PM
You will have to break that covering over the harness to add it thou right?

06-19-2005, 05:44 PM
No.. You shouldn't have to. It just snaps off.
So pop it loose, and slide it up aling the wires enough to give you room. You will however have to drill a small hole to slide the wire through.