Mechanical or electric aftermarket gauges?

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OPN PONY

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I did a search thinking someone has likely asked this before but didn't see any questions on gauges this specific. My factory gauge pack indicates that the engine is running cool all the time. I've been thinking of installing a set of Stewart-Warner oil and temp gauges under the dash to get a a little more accurate read on engine conditions.

I can get mechanical gauges that run tubes to the gauges or electric that have senders and wires. Anyone have a suggestions as to which is better?

I assume the electric ones are easier to install and the mechanical are more accurate?

Thanks in advance for any advice.

 

mdan575

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Just remember when mechanical gauges fail or the connecting components(tubes) you can possibly get leaks. Coolant, Oil, Fuel what ever the pressure or temperature you are monitoring. Electrical gauges just quit working generally speaking. Not something I would really want a chance of happening to the interior of my classic car.

 
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Widowmaker00

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I had my mechanical oil gauge break and pour oil all over the dash and carpet about 8 years ago. Could never get the carpet clean. The oil did prevent my floors from rusting up though lol.

I'm going all electric when my car goes back together.

 

mdan575

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Thats what scares me. Generally speaking we have a bastard step child of a Mustang as some view it. Love my Mustang but some parts are too hard to get as it is. Not a fan of taking chances with something that has good alternatives.

 

Blueoval71

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I had my mechanical oil gauge break and pour oil all over the dash and carpet about 8 years ago. Could never get the carpet clean. The oil did prevent my floors from rusting up though lol.

I'm going all electric when my car goes back together.
This. Except for the rust preventing bonus I had the same thing happen.

About a year later a friend of mine had a small engine fire as a result of a oil feed line that failed. As long as the electronic sender is good and you have a good source of reverence voltage the gauges should read accurately.

 

Totalled

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Racers prefer mechanical, as they are generally more accurate. They are more sensitive, and react to changes quicker.

As above, failure = mess.

 

73 MACH 1 MAN

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Unless your going all out racing electrical gauges are just fine. Mechanicals are great but like others have said if the oil line breaks it make mess real quick! Been there done that! If your going electrical spend the extra bucks and get a quality Stewart Warner, Auto Meter... I replaced all my gauges with electrical Auto Meters. Here's a good site to buy gauges, they had the best prices I could find when I bought mine!

www.egauges.com. And the have quick delivery!!!!!!

 

71MUSTY

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I had a mechanical oil gauge line break once and pour HOT oil all over a cute gal I was on a date with. Needless to say no second date. :(

 
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droptop73

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If you go mechanical DO NOT use the plastic tube that comes with the gauge. Autometer makes a metal tube kit that is much more failsafe. Whatewver you use run the wires / tubes through good snug fitting grommets.

I have and am going to install both a mechanical oil pressure and water temperature gauge. I prefer the "full sweep" of the mechanical gauges. I'm not concerned about failure.

 
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For years I had a mechanical oil gauge but it was inside the engine compartment. I used a T fitting and some pipe with the stock sending unit. No hose. It was really handy especially working on the engine I could glance over and see if the oil pressure was fine. Also worked well to 'understand' where the stock gauge read.

Under the hood is brutal so it finally died (started to leak) and I have not replaced it. I should.

 

MechEng

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I would say stick with electrical. Have you thought about checking the calibration on your stock gauges to correct them instead of replacing them?

 

OPN PONY

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I would say stick with electrical. Have you thought about checking the calibration on your stock gauges to correct them instead of replacing them?
Good idea. I guess I was trying to do that with the extra gauges but as I was looking at the interior there isn't much room. Is there an easy method for calibrating /checking other than pulling the sensor and putting it in water with a thermometer?

As for the leaks with mechanicals, the oil pressure is still a problem but I think Stewart Warner uses a gas filled line to the water temp gauges... I guess Auto-meter probably does too?

 
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