American Autowire and amp gauge problem - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 07, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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American Autowire and amp gauge problem

I have a 68 with a 67 console ( stock gauges , S.I. type internally regulated alternator) everything is wired as per the instructions .Car runs good and the battery charges good ( checked the readings at the battery with a meter ). The amp gauge always shows discharge , I have it wired with the one wire from the amp gauge going to a juntion block on the pass. side and then the supplied 81" wire going to a junction block on the drivers side and the other wire from the amp gauge going nonstop to the drivers side junction block . The drivers side junction block then has 12 volts from the battery supplied to it . Is there a way to test the gauge and can I put a meter on the wires at the gauge to test them , if I can what scale would I use on the meter and what would I be looking for.

Last edited by flat350; Jul 10th, 07 at 06:34 PM.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 07, 02:35 PM Thread Starter
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge

I can't believe nobody knows how to test this , anybody out there that can help me ?

Steve

68 work in progress , but I can drive it now - O5D build - 712 trim - 02 color
Think it was a 396 , 4 spd. - now in primer , 350 , 4 spd. , lots of new body and mech. parts
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 03:26 AM
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

The factory amp meter is really a mili volt gauge that shows the voltage drop on the battery charge wire. Does the gauge always show discharge under all conditions (ie... car running or not, everything turned on or off) What is the voltage, at the battery, with the car running at a fast idle? Where is the alternator output (large red wire) wired to? Do you have anything extra wired to the battery or junction block?

Greg U

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 05:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

The battery is out of the car right now , my son needed an emergency battery in his work truck . The last time I ran the car I had 14 volts and change at the battery at a fast idle .The gauge shows discharge all the time , running or not, basically it never moves . The larger red wire on the alt. goes down to batt.on the starter per the AAW wiring instructions . Right now there is nothing connected to either junction block other than the wires from the amp meter .The instructions said the pass. side junction block needed to have a 12 v source to it ,that is what the wire from the + side of the battery supplies correct ? Nothing extra wired to the battery at all , car doesn't even have a radio . I'll have a battery for the car this Thur. or Fri .I hope , I'm envolved in a Little League baseball state tournament this weekend And I won't have lots of spare time .

Steve

68 work in progress , but I can drive it now - O5D build - 712 trim - 02 color
Think it was a 396 , 4 spd. - now in primer , 350 , 4 spd. , lots of new body and mech. parts
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 06:02 PM
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

Get a digital volt meter and measure the voltage drop between the battery junction block and the horn relay. You should see a very small voltage drop as you turn accessories on and off to change the load.

If the battery end is more positive than the horn relay, you're discharging the system. If the horn relay is more positive than the battery, you're charging the system.

If the gauge doesn't jive with your findings, you simply have the wires reversed. Hopefully you can swap them at the gauge easily enough, or rewire the front - whichever is easier.

Dave
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

With the AAW classic update wiring harness the horn relay is moved to under the dash its not on the core support any more . Thats why I have a junction block on each side of the car . Can I still measure the voltage at the drivers side junction block , does it replace the horn relay ? and is there a way to test the gauge itself to be sure it's alright .

Steve

68 work in progress , but I can drive it now - O5D build - 712 trim - 02 color
Think it was a 396 , 4 spd. - now in primer , 350 , 4 spd. , lots of new body and mech. parts

Last edited by flat350; Jul 11th, 07 at 06:32 PM.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 07:04 PM
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

I think you're at the point that you should just get the fine tech support at AAW involved. Call them at 800-482-WIRE, and ask to speak to Donny in tech. He's forgotten more about wiring GM musclecars than most of us have ever known, and he helped me through some issues with the Update install on my 69.

Eric
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 07, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

I already thought about that but I thought I'd find someone here that had the same problem and corrected it .

Steve

68 work in progress , but I can drive it now - O5D build - 712 trim - 02 color
Think it was a 396 , 4 spd. - now in primer , 350 , 4 spd. , lots of new body and mech. parts
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 07, 11:25 AM
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by flat350 View Post
With the AAW classic update wiring harness the horn relay is moved to under the dash its not on the core support any more . Thats why I have a junction block on each side of the car . Can I still measure the voltage at the drivers side junction block , does it replace the horn relay ? and is there a way to test the gauge itself to be sure it's alright .
Yes, you can measure the voltage at the driver's side junction block.

You can test the gauge though I'm not sure how much voltage it will take to deflect it. I'd probably try using a digital volt meter on the ohms scale to see if it will deflect the needle. If that doesn't work, try the continuity checker scale. If that doesn't work, you might try a 1.5 volt battery. Gauges are very sensative, particularly those external shunt ammeters. If you give them too much voltage / current, they can be damaged, so start small and work your way up.

BTW: As you're measuring the resistance of the meter coil, I'd expect you to see something like 20 to 200 ohms I'm guessing. Can't say as I've actually measured one. If you see infinity or 100,000 ohms or some-such, it's probably a sign that the coil winding has been damaged.

Dave
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 07, 01:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

I talked to Donny in tech at AAW today and he said it will never work the way it is wired , it's a design flaw . They have a kit that will fix it and they are shipping me one at no cost . Too bad that there aren't more companies that will stand behind a product and take care of problems with it like AAW did , would I buy from AAW again absolutly !

Steve

68 work in progress , but I can drive it now - O5D build - 712 trim - 02 color
Think it was a 396 , 4 spd. - now in primer , 350 , 4 spd. , lots of new body and mech. parts
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 07, 02:36 PM
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Re: American Autowire and amp gauge problem

Sweet, so it wasn't you. AAW is one of the best I have dealt with in over 30 years as a gearhead.

Eric
69 'vert project big block/TKO 600 RR
68 'vert driver RS clone -- gone!
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