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mechanical verses electronic gauges


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Need some opinions on gauges.

Before I joined this forum I put Glow shift gauges and a 3 gauge pillar pod on my 02 After reading many of the members comments I was sorry that I  got them.I've nothing but trouble with them, Thermocouples going bad,sensor going, out irratic fuel pressure readings.I've been

seriously thinking about chucking the them and getting  ISSPRO or Auto meter mechanical gauges to re place them.Any reason I should think about  electronic  gauges.DAP has a special on ISSPRO gauges ?

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I'd have to disagree. I'm a big fan of autometer. I have 3 on my truck, my brother has 2, my neighbor has 2, and my dad has 2. My dads have been in since the late 90's to early 2000's and he hasn't had a problem. Mine have been trouble free as well. I think it's more personal preference than anything.

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I'm a big fan of mechanical gauges. They don't need power or senders. They work even if the truck is push down a hill. But electric sender gauge always fail without warning and anyways looking for a mechanical gauge to verify a electric gauge. :rolleyes:

for my fuel pressure gage I have an electric gage on the column, BUT have a mechanical gage at the lift pump, the electric gage is way off but gives me an idea if I need to look under the truck at the mechanical gage.Copy2ofCopyofFuelpumpsenderandgauge2.jpg

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I got all ISSPRO gauges when I did mine. I really like them. They do seem well built and they all lived through winter in Grand Forks, ND last year where it got down to about -50 F a couple of times. I agree that mechanical is way better than electric just because you know for sure that is what is really happening out there. With electric, its whatever the sender says is happening. Don't really trust it.

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THanks  for your advice , I think I'll go ahead and get mechanical ISSPRO fuel and boost ,I wonder how reliable there exhaust temp thermocouples are? I will be using a needle valve .I read something about a short piece of grease gun hose .,Is that really something you need if you use a needle valve?

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I know this is a preference that varies from person to person.

But I worked in a refinery before I retired and over the years they had mechanical & electronics gauges.

If installed and maintained right, both were good.

But as time went by I noticed the electronics were better with: (a) less maintenance, (b) long term cost, © availability and (d) longer term service.

So I prefer the electronics.

They have proven, (at least to me and a multibillion industry), cost effective. 

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  • 1 month later...

Just thought I would add my experiences on gauges to that already expressed.

My take on electrical gauges are that they can be good but need to be verified/checked on a  regular basis. Gauge used for verification are usually a mechanical gauge. I understand that electrical gauges can  be preferred for particular applications outside of our trucks, where a mechanical one would not be so useful.

 

I recently had my mechanical gauge in the cab register a sudden low pressure reading of 4psi when it normally read around 16psi. Having had to previously re-adjust regulating valve twice because of falling pressure (I assumed the regulating valve spring on lift pump was failing) I decided to put in another spring in regulating valve - very close to original in size. Tried and found no improvement.

 

Decided then to check the pressure at the VP44 inlet where Schrader valve used to reside. I used a spare 120 psi gauge I had laying around and adapted to what I needed. When I ran the engine I got 25psi at idle !!! This proved that the lift pump was fine - what to do ? I had a gauge isolator between the VP44 and the gauge in the cab. I decide to take the isolator out of the system and connect from VP44 (at needle valve) to the cab gauge direct. Ran the engine and I got an immediate response on the cab gauge - still too high though. I then removed the second spring and installed the original spring back in the regulating valve and checked again. Again I got a quick positive response on the cab gauge and after a couple of further adjustments, have idle set at 20 psi and 17psi at 60 mph on level highway. The engine runs very well (all stock) and nothing out of the ordinary evident.

 

If anyone has a gauge isolator installed between reading point and cab gauge, it might pay to remove the isolator from the set up. In my case, the isolator seems to have failed for some unknown reason and caused me a few anxious moments. I don't know how long the cab gauge has been reading inaccurately because of the isolator. I am keeping my fingers crossed that I haven't been running with excessively high pressures over the last year or so (new VP44 installed December 2013). I do feel better knowing that there is nothing between the VP44 and the cab gauge that can fail. Whether electrical or mechanical, gauges that need an isolator/sending unit, introduce another level of errors. For my money, where possible, I will stick to the mechanical gauge without an isolator. 

 

Just my $0.02, but it sure caused me some un-necessary work. Hope this helps someone else with their fuel pressure problems.

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I will stick to the mechanical gauge without an isolator.

 

I've done exactly that for 10 years without a single leak in the cab. So I'm sure with the proper setup and routing of your tubing you can get that kind of service and more.

 

 

In my case, the isolator seems to have failed for some unknown reason and caused me a few anxious moments.

 

From what I can figure out on isolators they typically end up taking the full hit of the water hammer pulse constantly flexing the diaphragm/piston till it ruptures or till the coolant leaks out. I've not found anyone yet that made any kind of long term head way with isolator installed with a mechanical gauge.

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Most of the "cheaper" electric gauges are not worth the hassle, IMO.

 

I use the Spek Pro electric gauges. They certainly are not cheap...either in quality or price. But they are very accurate, have super precise 280 degree electric movements, fully programmable high or low alerts and fully programmable backlighting and needle lighting. I really like them, and run them in my race car and my truck.

 

www.propartsllc.com

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Most of the "cheaper" electric gauges are not worth the hassle, IMO.

 

I use the Spek Pro electric gauges. They certainly are not cheap...either in quality or price. But they are very accurate, have super precise 280 degree electric movements, fully programmable high or low alerts and fully programmable backlighting and needle lighting. I really like them, and run them in my race car and my truck.

 

www.propartsllc.com

 

I tried several tachs in my baja bug and went to the Spek Pro and those are great reliable programmable, made by autometer and would love to change out all my gauges to Spek Pro.  

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