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Thread: how to install a mechanical water temp gauge

  1. #1
    Hands Dirty +100kw MARK_XF UTE's Avatar
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    Default how to install a mechanical water temp gauge

    g'day guys,

    just another write up iv done when i installed a mechanical water temp gauge

    the things that you'll need

    water temp gauge, i bought a speco one.
    temp housing adaptor, if your installing the temp probe in the thermostate housing then you wont need one, just make sure you use the right adaptor
    gauge mounting panel or cup
    some wire
    solder
    soldering iron
    heat shrink
    corrugated split tubing
    replacement top radiator hose
    wire strippers
    screws
    screwdrivers
    side cutters
    slicone or thread sealer
    teflon tape
    coolant
    water
    hose clamps








    firstly find a spot you like to mount your gauge, in my case i mounted it under the dash using a gauge mounting panel.



    next find a spot for your temp housing adaptor. if your going to use the thermostate housing then you can skip these three steps, now is a good time to find a hole in the firewall, find an un-used rubber grommet and cut a small hole in it.

    take a couple of mesurements of were your temp housing is going to live, try to mount it close to the thermostate housing as possible, now undo the hose clamps and remove the hose dont throw out the hose, if its split or swollen throw it out otherwise keep it as a spare. take note that there will be some coolant loss, not a alot of it just a little.

    working with your mesuments that you made cut a small section out of the replacement hose, take little cuts as dont wont to cut too much.

    when your done it should look abit like this


    install the new hose and use two new hose clamps


    now lets deal with the gauge,

    carefully feed the line through and under the dash, feed the line throught the hole you found making sure its not going to kink or rub on sharpe edges and route it so its not in the way of being damaged.


    use some corrugated splite tubing and feed it onto the line, its just gives it some protection from being damaged.

    now grab some teflon tape and wrap the threads of the brass connections, if your connections have rubber o-rings use a little bit of rubber grease.


    a small smear of silicone onto the teflon tape and screw the brass connections into place and tighten them up, be careful not to overtighten the rubber o-rings if your connections have them.

    now for the gauge back light

    cut some wire long enough to reach the headlight switch, strip, solder and heat shrink the wires together.


    find a wire that turns on and off with the headlight circut in your wiring dagram or hunt around with multimeter, once you've found the wire splice into it, use good solder and find a spot for the earth wire.

    wrap the connection up in tape, use some heat shrink and corrugated split tubing to neaten the wiring up abit.


    your almost done!! install the gauge into its cup, dash or panel and pop the light into the back of the gauge.

    now before you start the engine turn the heater dial to the max, open the radiator cap (make sure its cold) and top up the coolant level that was lost, mix the coolant and water at a 50 - 50 ratio and find the bleeder.


    start the engine and check for leaks, if one is found shut the engine off and remedy the problem, if none is found keep the engine running. with the heater tap open and being carefull not to burn yourself with hot coolant crack the bleeder open until coolant starts coming out, once you see a stream of coolant close it up, top the system up again if needed, put the radiator cap back on and go for a quick spin and the block. by bleeding the cooling system it elimniates any air pockets that are in the system.

    you are now done!!


    my setup

    at night it looks better in person
    Mark
    italian 100cc kart engine + 20,000 RPM......nuff said

  2. #2
    TRDLZR nut's Avatar
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    nice work man, why do you have a boost gauge?
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  3. #3
    Hands Dirty +100kw MARK_XF UTE's Avatar
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    it doubles as a vacumm gauge as well, works both ways im happy with it
    Mark
    italian 100cc kart engine + 20,000 RPM......nuff said

  4. #4
    TRDLZR impakt's Avatar
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    good write up im thinking of doing this as i have no temperature gauge in my car, just 1 question though, is there water in the hose tht goes to the gauge

  5. #5
    Hands Dirty +100kw MARK_XF UTE's Avatar
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    nope, the temp probe is a brass unit of somesort but the line will be under pressure when its at temp.
    Mark
    italian 100cc kart engine + 20,000 RPM......nuff said

  6. #6
    Hands Dirty +100kw Bad Bird's Avatar
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    I think that most of the mechanical temperature gauges use a line that is filled with ether which expands and contracts as a function of temperature. I tested one of the Speco gauges against a thermocouple once and I found that it was both very accurate and reproducible. I think they're a good quality low-cost gauge. A lot of the old-school racers prefer these mechanical gauges too, because they are not subject to electrical faults.

  7. #7
    TRDLZR nut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bad Bird View Post
    I think that most of the mechanical temperature gauges use a line that is filled with ether which expands and contracts as a function of temperature. I tested one of the Speco gauges against a thermocouple once and I found that it was both very accurate and reproducible. I think they're a good quality low-cost gauge. A lot of the old-school racers prefer these mechanical gauges too, because they are not subject to electrical faults.
    they may not be prone to electrical faults but could leak coolant or oil into your car...
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