VDO Gauges

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This topic contains 24 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  billnparts 2 years, 9 months ago.

Viewing 25 posts - 1 through 25 (of 25 total)
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  • #234851

    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    If you’re shopping for gauge, check this out.

    http://www.counterman.com/Article/117304/free_vdo_gauges2go_app_simulates_vdo_instruments_on_enthusiasts_dashboards.aspx

    PMOSSBERG2013-08-20 21:47:15

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

    #257375

    nobody
    Participant

    @nobody

    Along the lines of this topic does anyone know of where to get a speedometer and tach for VW? (Tach is easy but a matching speedo with the VW cable connection is not) VDO doesn’t make a gauge with the analog cable input, all theirs are digital now and to convert from cable to digital needs a few expensive bits… 

    #257376

    spike-lewis
    Participant

    @spike-lewis

    Hi,
    Dolphin gauges has the analog speedo.

    dolphingauges.com

    Spike

    #257377

    al-greig
    Participant

    @al-greig

    I have a set of Classic Instruments including Speedo and Tack.  They have an adapter with a cable that goes to the front hub of the VW wheel and ends in an electrical transponder that sends the signal to the Speedo.

    http://www.classicinstruments.net/

    #257378

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    I will again advocate for using a stock late Beetle Speedo–100 mph–with built-in fuel gauge and an aftermarket chrome bezel. Pair it with a 4 5/8 (nominal 5-inch) tach from Classic Instruments or VDO, and you will have replicated the approximate gauge set that the TDs had. Another excellent choice for a tach, if you can find one, is the Smiths unit from a mid-1960s Volvo. These are also the correct size, electronically actuated and look properly British. They will not be as good as a Classic Instruments though.

    1972-up Beetle speedometers are all over ebay at $40. Minor refurbishment (like $70) brings the fuel gauge in line. The Classic Instruments big Tach can be had for like $135. So the price of doing it my way is no more than the aftermarket method. 
    #257379

    nobody
    Participant

    @nobody

    Thanks for the tips guys!

    Ed- do the beetle speedo and classic instruments tach match fairly well? I would like to have the two “clusters” match among themselves as closely as possible but that could just be me being a perfectionist! Embarrassed
    #257380

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    They’re not a perfect match. I bought a white gauge face for the speedo and the font is close, but I do wish it was better. One solution would be to make (or have someone make) a custom face to match the tach and print that like a bumper sticker. You have the speedo open anyway. I may yet do this. But for now it’s fine. Accurate. Easy to read. Cheap. And looks “right,” even to an MG guy, from 10 feet away.

    #257381

    sreynolds
    Participant

    @sreynolds

    Ed, do you have a pic of this speedo and tach combination?

    Sam

    #257382

    nobody
    Participant

    @nobody

    I’ve been looking over my options doing some research and the Dolphin gauges look pretty nice. Spike do you have one of their speedometers and does it read accurately with the VW cable and tire size?

    #257383

    kentt
    Participant

    @kentt

    I went a slightly different path for my planned new dash. A 67-earlier VW speedo, with a Porsche 914 VDO tach modified with a face decal to match that speedo and look.

    Though not my rebuilt speedo. Here’s a pic of a 67 speedo from eBay. I had the guy who cleaned and rebuilt it put a red needle with silver button to match the tach.

    Though the older speedo doesn’t have a gas gauge, the fonts on the numbers look more 1950s-ish, IMO. I wanted something a bit different also…

    I bought a set of red-needle VDO clones to match it. Also bought a large rebuilt/converted 12v clock that maches tach and speedo, if I can figure out where to put it. Total investment is less than new set with digital speedo.

    Early FF TDr on 69 VW pan
    Slowly coming back from the ashes...

    #257384

    texag71
    Participant

    @texag71

    Kent, I’d love to see how that project looks once you’ve finished it. Please post some photos when you can. Are the tach and speedo the same size?

    TexAg712015-01-15 22:36:34

    1981 Lafer TI
    1600 cc Type 1 engine

    #257385

    kentt
    Participant

    @kentt

    It will likely be next winter before the dash redo makes it to the top of the list… 😛

    Tach, speedo and clock are all the same size. The tach is actually inside an old VW clock housing, in order to get matching bezel, mounting tabs etc. I will use the OEM trim pieces to recess them into dash and rear-mount them.

    Currently thinking of putting the clock centered on passenger’s side.

    KentT2015-01-15 22:55:25

    Early FF TDr on 69 VW pan
    Slowly coming back from the ashes...

    #257386

    spike-lewis
    Participant

    @spike-lewis

    I haven’t installed the gauges yet. I was told by DOLPHIN the speedo would work. I told them I was replacing a VDO gauge. I bought the 6 gauge set and I’m a bit shy installing the volt and gas gauge. I plan on replacing all the gauges so they match but may be in over my head

    Spike

    #257387

    rosebud-and-bill
    Participant

    @rosebud-and-bill

    I bought the Dolphin set of guages for my FF, everything works perfect.

     
    Bill

    Bad Bill

    #257388

    texag71
    Participant

    @texag71

    My problem with full gauge sets is that they always seem to include one for water temp instead of oil temp, which is what I’d need for the Lafer’s VW engine.

    1981 Lafer TI
    1600 cc Type 1 engine

    #257389

    royal
    Participant

    @royal

    I almost bought a water temp gauge and was going to adapt the sender to a fitting so that it would measure oil temp. The range was about right so I figured the fact that it said water instead of oil would just be our little secret.

    #257390

    newkitman
    Participant

    @newkitman

    I’d rather have a voltage gauge in mine rather than the amp gauge but I can’t find one to match my set. And that’s another problem we run across when one gauge craps out…finding a new gauge that matches. Even the new gauge sets at MG Magic are different than the ones I have now.

    Allen Caron
    VW based 53MGTD - "MoneyPenny"
    "If one thing matters, everything matters" - from the book The Shack

    #257391

    kentt
    Participant

    @kentt

    newkitman wrote:
    I’d rather have a voltage gauge in mine rather than the amp gauge but I can’t find one to match my set. And that’s another problem we run across when one gauge craps out…finding a new gauge that matches. Even the new gauge sets at MG Magic are different than the ones I have now.

    That’s the problem I have with my existing gauges. They’re 2-1/8″ Stewart-Warners, and I can’t find anything that matches and fits the holes in my fiberglass dash. I’m putting a 55 amp (I think) alternator in it on my new 1679cc engine, and a 30 amp ammeter doesn’t cut it…

    Early FF TDr on 69 VW pan
    Slowly coming back from the ashes...

    #257392

    nobody
    Participant

    @nobody

    Ok great to hear about the dolphin gauges, I sent them an email about a “custom” set with the 5″ speedo and tach and a voltmeter, clock, and fuel. He said it would be about $400. 

    #257393

    spike-lewis
    Participant

    @spike-lewis

    Can I use the same wires when changing out my VDO amp gauge to my Dolphin volt gauge? Or does it have to be wired differently
    Thanks,
    Spike

    #257394

    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    All voltmeters run two wires. 1-hot, 1-ground. That’s the easiest one to hook up.
    Sorry, the answer to your question is yes.

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

    #257395

    spike-lewis
    Participant

    @spike-lewis

    Thanks, I was hoping I can just switch out the VDO amp, gas and oil temp, using the current wires and hook them to the Dolphin gauges.

    Spike

    #257396

    kentt
    Participant

    @kentt

    I think you need to do at least some rewiring to change from an ammeter to a voltmeter.

    I always understood that ammeters were wired directly into the primary charging circuit between the battery and the voltage regulator, and have no ground wire. Both legs are hot, and the wire must be a heavy enough gauge to carry the entire charge current of the generator or alternator.

    A voltmeter has one hot wire (typically much smaller wire than an ammeter) that wire that connects to that charging circuit. That wire only monitors the voltage in that circuit, it does not carry the charge back to the battery. It also has a separate ground wire that ground to the frame.

    Early FF TDr on 69 VW pan
    Slowly coming back from the ashes...

    #257397

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    I think I just connected the ammeter wires together in a big sleeve and taped them up when I went to a voltmeter. The voltmeter is wired basically from any keyed hot wire and then grounded. 

    Ammeter never worked, and having two 8 gauge (or whatever) + wires live and exposed back where they could easily touch a ground circuit gave me the heebies. Ammeter looks right on a TD though. Voltmeters did not become common until the 60s.
    #257398

    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    Ii must apologize. I read that wrong. I thought you were just swapping brands of voltmeters. Shouldn’t  do this when I’m tired.

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

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