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What are the advantages and disadvantages of mechanical and electrical gauges? I currently only have an electrical water temp. gauge. I'd like to add oil pressure and voltage, and replace the water temp. My intake manifold has a fitting for the oil pressure, and it has a little prong type thing sticking out of it as if it were for a wire to connect to it. My main question is, do i need, or should I get MECHANICAL, or ELECTRICAL gauges?

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black 68 Camaro
 

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mechanical gauges are nice because they are allegedly more accurate, but more of a pain to hook up. the capilary tube for a temp gauge needs to be fed thru the firewall, and needs a pretty sizable hole to get the fitting thru. oil pressure gauges need to have the tube ran thru the firewall, and they sometimes leak oil inside the car.
electric gauges are more sanitary to install, and can be hooked to a plug under the dash to get them out of the way easier if need be.
i have always been a mechanical gauge fan, but as i get older and lazier, electric is starting to look better to me personally..

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1971 Nova(looks like 69 camaro from underneath!)
355sb, vortec heads, HOT cam,T-10 tranny, 3.70 gears 16X8" IROC wheels. 12" Corvette brakes on the way.
see pics here http://community.webshots.com/user/novaderrik

[This message has been edited by novaderrik (edited 08-24-2002).]
 

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I have Autometer pro-comp electrics in my 69 (a little over 2 years now) Work great and I have had no issues with them.

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Jeff
69 SSRS 396(roller 427 :D )
My Chevs
 

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Get the electric ones they are better. I've tried both and found out that te electric ones are more accurate. Also on a mech. oil the line can bust and oil is spilling everywhere. You don't get that with electrical ones.
 

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I agree, go with electric.

Mechanical are more accurate "my opinion" but they do propose a safety issue which is why auto companies stop installing them in vehicles. Plus a voltmeter will give you direct indication of a system failure as compared to an ampmeter which can give false indication.
 

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You don't have to worry about the oil line bursting if you use the correct steel braided hose. The cheep plastic tubing should not be used in a performance car, especially one run at the track.

90% of the cars ever made didn't come with a voltage or amp gauge. The idiot light is fine for me. However, I may be an idiot for thinking that


I prefer mechanical gauges becaues of the larger sweep. It's interesting what different people consider to be a pain. To me it was easier to drill the hole in the firewall and hook up the mech gauges than to deal with having to run a bunch of additional wires.

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Pearl blue & white 69 Camaro with supercharged 350, Tremec TKO, and 3.73 12-bolt

See my website updated 6/10/02 at:

www.geocities.com/gheatly
 

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gheatly, Went to a cruise this past weekend and when I got ready to leave the battery was dead. The "GEN" idiot light never came on. It turns out the voltage regulator was bad and must have kept the light from coming on. Installed the new volt reg. and the light now works again (comes on with switch on engine not running). I ordered a Volt gauge and some others Monday. I'm just passing this along because I to always thought the light would tell me if the system wasn't charging.


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Robert Johnson

'69 getting better every day... (every pay day)
350ci 700r4 3.55 posi A/C PS PDB
 

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Just want to add my second to all the above on electric. I hear that mechanical is more accurate, but for a street machine I would go with electric.

Also, not to be critical of your post, but I don't believe that your intake would have a fitting for oil pressure. Up in the front of the manifold, will be a fitting for water temp, and behind the carb will be one for vaccum. The oil pressure fitting is right behind the distributor and goes into the block, the intake is cut around it.
 

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I don't know about the rules where you race but my local drag strip will fail you at tech for having a mechanical oil pressure guage. They are tired of cheap ones oiling down the track!

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It's not easy to go fast on a disability pension... But it's sure worth it!
 

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How would the gauge oil down the track? They must be having problems with the cheap nylon hose popping out of the fitting on the back of the block. The plastic hosing is supposed to be a NO-NO, but it sounds like they are passing the Tech inspection anyways.

There was an article in this month's Car Craft on mechanical vs electric gauges. Autometer says their electric ones are slightly more accurate, but the difference isn't enough to tell.

I am about to install an electric fuel pressure gauge. We'll see how it goes.
 

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I put the Autometer electric fuel pressure gauge in and like it. Seems accurate and sensitive ( boo-hoo!).

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Rick Dorion
69 RS Conv,355,Autogear M22,4.10's and I don't worry about stone chips ( yet ).
 
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