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Thread: Help with in-dash gauges -----mystery wires------

  1. #1
    Member magnus77's Avatar
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    Default Help with in-dash gauges -----mystery wires------

    Hey guys,

    So I got this instrument cluster with my car when I bought it and I'm not sure how to wire it in without any diagrams. So here's a couple pics: There's 3 gauges, the amp, water temp, and oil pressure and each have 4 wires. I assume one is ground (black?), power (blue/red?), and one to the light dimmer (somewhere), but what would the fourth be and which ones are they!!?

    Cheers,

    gerhard
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    1985 LTD Crown Vic, factory hard top, 302 soon to be gt40p headed (lightly ported & blended), summit brand stealth (port matched), stock cam, summit annular 600cfm VS, dual exhaust, 3.55 LSD, AOD, electric fan swap, tan interior.

  2. #2
    GMN = life pantera77's Avatar
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    Two are power and ground for the light, pretty obvious which ones those are.
    The others are for the gauges themselves.

    Did you get the sending units for the oil pressure and water temp gauge?
    Also, judging by the needle in the oil pressure gauge, it's shot.

    Honestly I'd toss them all and buy some modern gauges.
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  3. #3
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    Is that the police gauge pod or an aftermarket item?
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    Member magnus77's Avatar
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    Oh yea haha didnt even see the broken needle. Well, time for new ones I guess. And yes, it's the police pod so i was told.

    1985 LTD Crown Vic, factory hard top, 302 soon to be gt40p headed (lightly ported & blended), summit brand stealth (port matched), stock cam, summit annular 600cfm VS, dual exhaust, 3.55 LSD, AOD, electric fan swap, tan interior.

  5. #5

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    That's the police pod through 87 or 89?
    I use to see those all the time, but haven't laid eyes on one in years.

  6. #6
    Member magnus77's Avatar
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    I want to say 87', because it fits my 85. I'm not very familiar with the 88' and up models though.

    1985 LTD Crown Vic, factory hard top, 302 soon to be gt40p headed (lightly ported & blended), summit brand stealth (port matched), stock cam, summit annular 600cfm VS, dual exhaust, 3.55 LSD, AOD, electric fan swap, tan interior.

  7. #7
    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    Be sure not to trash the old gauge. One day someone will want a matching set for their cop car resto. I saw an article recently in Hemmingd Classic Car about a police car concours event. It was like pebble beach for police cars and there were several boxes present.
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    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    88 and 89 used a plastic piece similar in style. Just purchase new gauge and NO ammeter. Substitute that with a volt meter.

    If this was not already installed you will have to cut out a bunch to make it fit.


    I cannot comment on the amp gauge but the water and oil gauges have a power, ground, sender, and the power and ground for the lights.

    Based on prior knowledge (and the tiny wires attached to the amp gauge) the amp gauge is just "sensing" or "sampling" the amount of amps being used by the vehicle. No Idea on how to hook up a "shunt" type of amp meter. I believe that other "stock" wiring bits may be involved from a vehicle that originally had this.
    Last edited by 87gtVIC; 06-07-2016 at 05:41 PM.
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    Member magnus77's Avatar
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    I might just spend a little and buy a new bundle for the volt/oil/water guages, and then use them in that holder, and I dont mind cutting the slot for it. I've taken the dash apart so many times already for my tach, a/f ratio gauge, and all the wiring for aftermarket power windows/locks and speakers. Yup it was a bitch.

    1985 LTD Crown Vic, factory hard top, 302 soon to be gt40p headed (lightly ported & blended), summit brand stealth (port matched), stock cam, summit annular 600cfm VS, dual exhaust, 3.55 LSD, AOD, electric fan swap, tan interior.

  10. #10
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    The ammeter is a pain because it needs an external shunt in order to work. Unless you happen to know exactly what it wants for that, its not going to be accurate.

    I also want to say those oil and temp gauges run on the IVR, and will not work correctly on 12v power. I think it was Natehawk that had a set and we never got them to work right. The temp and oil were pretty much pegged all the time no matter what sender we tried. Maybe it was something about it needing a BS sending unit, but either way it didn't work right.

    Another vote for modern gauges, its a lot less BS to get ones that have a known sending unit.

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  11. #11
    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magnus77 View Post
    I might just spend a little and buy a new bundle for the volt/oil/water guages, and then use them in that holder, and I dont mind cutting the slot for it. I've taken the dash apart so many times already for my tach, a/f ratio gauge, and all the wiring for aftermarket power windows/locks and speakers. Yup it was a bitch.
    Can you share pictures of all of this. I am curious as to what you have done and how it has turned out.
    ~David~

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    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

  12. #12
    Member magnus77's Avatar
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    Sure thing, i might make a thread for the whole project eventually when I start doing the head/intake/carb swap work later this summer.

    I previously tore apart the dash to install the stereo head unit and small in-dash speakers but i decided they were garbage, and that was after trying to figure out why it wasnt working properly. I also had to figure out why the air control unit was so stiff. I'm actually currently installing the power windows/locks, with the new door speakers, both of which I'll have to make holes for. I have a couple wires routed through the door hole, inside the side, and to the engine bay (avoided digging in the firewall) for the tach wire & power lock power wire.

    here's the a/f ratio gauge going where the clock was previously, made with stack/glued bristol board (ooooh yeaaa). looks good to me though.
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    And the inside doors:
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    the power window/door wiring down under the carpet (+ cables to the sub in the trunk/rear speakers):
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    And the dash
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    1985 LTD Crown Vic, factory hard top, 302 soon to be gt40p headed (lightly ported & blended), summit brand stealth (port matched), stock cam, summit annular 600cfm VS, dual exhaust, 3.55 LSD, AOD, electric fan swap, tan interior.

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