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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,
I have a 69 coupe with console and gauges. While I like the look of original gauges, I want to swap out for the 2 1/16" round auto meter gauges. I have a pretty good amount of money in my motor, and would like more accurate info as to water temp and oil press.
I plan to replace the four original gauges with electrical gauges fuel, oil press, water temp, and VOLTMETER instead of amps. With the electrical console gauges, is it possible to still wire things so I have the oil and temp idiot lights working too?
I bought the aftermarket plastic piece that accepts gauges that angle toward the driver. Anyone who is using this, feel free to comment on the setup
Thanks in advance.
RJ
 

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Hi all,
I have a 69 coupe with console and gauges. While I like the look of original gauges, I want to swap out for the 2 1/16" round auto meter gauges. I have a pretty good amount of money in my motor, and would like more accurate info as to water temp and oil press.
I plan to replace the four original gauges with electrical gauges fuel, oil press, water temp, and VOLTMETER instead of amps. With the electrical console gauges, is it possible to still wire things so I have the oil and temp idiot lights working too?
I bought the aftermarket plastic piece that accepts gauges that angle toward the driver. Anyone who is using this, feel free to comment on the setup
Thanks in advance.
RJ
All mine are mechanical guages. The water temp idiot light sensor is in the side of the head. I put the mechanical guage sensor in the intake behind the alt bracket so that the engine looked stock.

The oil pressure idiot light wire is disconnected. I put the oil presure cap tube in fitting in place of the electrical sensor.

 

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There are two gauges that wouldn't work with the factory wiring; the voltmeter and oil pressure gauge. It would be extremely easy to wire them though.

For the voltmeter, just ignore the old ammeter connector and connect the positive terminal of the voltmeter to one of the pink wires that power the other gauges and connect the negative to a convenient ground. The terminal stud of the gas gauge where the low fuel module red wire connects would be a good choice for power, no splicing involved.

The oil pressure gauge needs to be powered like the voltmeter. You will also need to run a wire from the gauge to the oil pressure sender. Are the old gauges a conversion from the idiot light system? If it was converted, depending on how it was done, sometimes the blue wire to the oil pressure switch is left intact in the harness. You could use that wire for the sender. Just extend that wire from dash oil light down to the console.

Install the senders that came with the gauges to insure proper gauge operation. Also, the fuel sender might need replaced if the new gauge doesn't use a 90 ohm sender.

I think that covers it all...

Larry

Larry
 

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I am in a similar boat. Imo If you dont have a bone stock car do it your way.
If it is close to stock keep the oe gauges for the purists. If not, hello E bay.
I don't know if you can keep the dummy lights. I would not do anything irreparable, by the time the lights go off it's too late. I don't have oe console gauges. My fuel is in the dash so I will have trans temp instead of fuel. Looking to see how this post goes. Good luck.
 

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All mine are mechanical guages. The water temp idiot light sensor is in the side of the head. I put the mechanical guage sensor in the intake behind the alt bracket so that the engine looked stock.

The oil pressure idiot light wire is disconnected. I put the oil presure cap tube in fitting in place of the electrical sensor.

Which model Autometer gauges are those? I like 'em a lot! Kind of like the 'old school' Stewart-Warner gauges. Very much a late 60's look.
 

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I misread your original question, RJ. You want to still use the idiot lights, right? It looks like your harness has been converted if you still have the oil and temp lights. Factory gauges didn't use any warning lights.

You will have to run another wire for the oil and temp gauges since the original sender wires need to be kept intact if you want to still use the lights. You can use a tee along with the original senders so you can use the same oil and water temp ports. You could get fancy and use the extra cavities in the firewall bulkhead connector for the two extra wires.


Larry
 

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I did exactly what you want to do, on a 68 that did not come with factory guages. As posted above, you need to run extra wires for the oil and temp (note if your car was converted to guages not delivered with them, that oiul idiot light wire is probably there.

I used some brass fittings and a TEE to plumb both the idiot light sender and the autometer oil pressure sender into the hole behind the distributor.

For temp, I left the stock idiot light sender (actually had to use one from a mid 80's buick because my heads have smaller holes than the old ones) in the stock location between cylinders 1 & 3, and put the autometer sender in the hole between cylinders 6 & 8.

Then just ran 2 new wires for the senders.

Here's a pic of my console:
 

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You guys are great. Thanks for all your input. I plan to get started as soon as my gauges arrive. I bought the white faced ones, just like Jim shows in the pics. I chose those since the original console gauges are white. I appreciate the info on the idiot lights. Was hoping to put sensors in the heads in order to keep the water temp idiot light, but my Canfield aluminum heads have no opening for a sender.
Thanks again guys. Great info.
RJ
 

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Which model Autometer gauges are those? I like 'em a lot! Kind of like the 'old school' Stewart-Warner gauges. Very much a late 60's look.
I will look tonight and let you know. I also used the green covers on the lights so that at night they match the dash lights.
 

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I did the same thing to my 68. It was a no gauge car and I installed the white faced autometers. The trick is to run them through the fuse block it keeping everything clean looking. I re-wired the entire front of my car from the firewall forward. I started out with brand new replacement wire harnesses and I stripped off all the tape and started from scratch. My old harnesses of course did not have any of the gauge wiring so with the new wires having the gauge wires I was able to utilize them for the most part. Using a wiring diagram and a new conversion kit from Mad Electrical I now have the new system installed and it works GREAT!! My headlights are brighter, my charging system is tip top. My gauges work super and I was able to maintain the idiot lights as well as the new gauge setup. I also used the electric gauges in my setup. I will say this though.....it was a lot of work and it took me about 12 hours or so and a few phone calls to get it right.
 

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Was hoping to put sensors in the heads in order to keep the water temp idiot light, but my Canfield aluminum heads have no opening for a sender.
Thanks again guys. Great info.
RJ
How about finding a thermostat cover that has the fittings for water temp sensors? Most late model engines had them.

Larry
 
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