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Subject: "Oil Pressure Gauge" Archived thread - Read only
 
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Conferences Spitfire Hangar Spitfire Electrics Topic #419
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dutch
Member since Oct-24-08
47 posts (Insists on driving in straight lines at autocross events)
May-06-09, 05:01 AM (PST)
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"Oil Pressure Gauge"
 
   Need one of the many Spitfire gurus to guide me on this one. I installed a new oil pressure gauge with a new sending unit. When I merely turn on the ignition, the gauge needle goes to maximum (100 lbs) and stays pegged there while the engine is running. I double checked the connections and everything appears correct.

Any ideas?

Good grief


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  Subject     Author     Message Date     ID  
  RE: Oil Pressure Gauge Joe Curry May-06-09 1
     RE: Oil Pressure Gauge dutch May-06-09 2
         RE: Oil Pressure Gauge Joe Curry May-06-09 3
             RE: Oil Pressure Gauge tonymrfixitteam May-06-09 4
             RE: Oil Pressure Gauge dutch May-11-09 5
                 RE: Oil Pressure Gauge Richard & Daffy May-11-09 6
                     RE: Oil Pressure Gauge tonymrfixitteam May-11-09 7
                 RE: Oil Pressure Gauge Joe Curry May-11-09 8
                     RE: Oil Pressure Gauge dutch May-11-09 9
                         RE: Oil Pressure Gauge tonymrfixitteam May-11-09 10
                             RE: Oil Pressure Gauge mikecyc72usa May-11-09 11

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Joe Curry
Member since Oct-20-03
1328 posts (An "official" TTN Senior Wrangler)
May-06-09, 07:40 AM (PST)
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1. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #0
 
   Are you using an electrical gauge? If so, did you get a sending unit with it?

If the answer to both questions are "YES", the input terminal (from the sender) is probably getting grounded. Full deflection usually means that there is full ground potential on that input terminal of the gauge. The sender is a pressue switch that acts as a variable resistor in that as the pressure increases, the less resistance is provided between the output and ground.

Possible fixes are (a) replace the sender and (b) check the wire from the sender to the gauge for any shorting to ground.

Personally, I prefer the mechanical gauges because they have much less potential for such problems and tend to be more accurate.

Joe


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dutch
Member since Oct-24-08
47 posts (Insists on driving in straight lines at autocross events)
May-06-09, 09:47 AM (PST)
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2. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #1
 
   Thank you for the quick response. Gauge is electrical. I'll check the wire to sender. If it is the sender, I do not have a source for a replacement so I would readily go to mechanical (if only I knew where to find one). I do have the oil line tap just before the sender. Logic tells me that could be the source of the short.

Good grief


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Joe Curry
Member since Oct-20-03
1328 posts (An "official" TTN Senior Wrangler)
May-06-09, 11:07 AM (PST)
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3. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #2
 
   Where did the original sender come from? Was it part of the kit with the guage? If so, you should be able to contact the manufacturer for a replacement or go to the store where you bought it and have them open another box and swap the sender with you. They should be able to return the package for credit.

A quick check of the sender can be done with a Multimeter by using the Ohms function to check the resistance at the output. With the engine off (no oil pressure) you should expect to have infinite resistance. But withas the oil pressure builds, the resistance goes down and at full range will be a direct short to ground (or very close).

If you have a direct short to ground with the engine off, that would indicate the sender is shot.

Joe


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tonymrfixitteam
Member since Dec-25-02
2633 posts (A TTN governor, governor)
May-06-09, 11:36 AM (PST)
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4. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #3
 
A mechanical gauge should not be hard to find
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/NEW-SUN-OIL-PRESSURE-GAUGE_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trkparmsZ72Q3a1171Q7c66Q3a2Q7c65Q3a12Q7c39Q3a1Q7c240Q3a1318Q7c301Q3a1Q7c293Q3a1Q7c294Q3a50QQ_trksidZp3286Q2ec0Q2em14QQhashZitem2ea507aca1QQitemZ200337239201QQptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

Tony M
74 Spitfire 1500
84 Toyota Pickup
03 VW Golf


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dutch
Member since Oct-24-08
47 posts (Insists on driving in straight lines at autocross events)
May-11-09, 06:48 AM (PST)
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5. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #3
 
   Joe,

Replace the sender and still needle pegged at 100lbs. I've read that the oil pressure, water temperature and fuel level gauges all require an "instrument voltage stabilizer." Could that be the problem? If so, what does it look like and where is it found?

I am to the point of going to all after market gauges. I assume the after market (Auto Pro) gauges will not require the instrument voltage stabilizer. Right?

Thanks for your help.

By the way, had the Spit out over the weekend. Runs great, but with all the usual performance mods, it still is a little slower than my 1994 Miate and just a little faster than my 1967 VW beetle. Looks and sounds fast.

Good grief


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Richard & Daffy
Charter Member
1434 posts (An "official" TTN Senior Wrangler)
May-11-09, 07:12 AM (PST)
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6. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #5
 
The voltage stabiliser is a device that takes the somewhat variable (12V - 14V) voltage from the battery, and outputs a steady 10V - without a consistent voltage, the gauges would wander up and down with the battery voltage, which wanders up and down with alternator output, which wanders up and down with engine speed.

Or, to be more precise, the voltage regulator switches between battery voltage and zero so that the average is 10V. The gauge needles react so slowly that they are not affected by this constant turning on and off again.

It is a small metal box (less than 2" long) that should be behind the dash, clamped under one of the thumb wheels that holds the speedo or tacho in place. It has two connections, a live supply and the output to the gauges. The casing needs to be grounded for it to work correctly.

If it is not grounded, or not working correctly, it will simply output full battery voltage. This will make your gauges read maybe 20-40% high, but should not make them peg out to maximum. So I am sceptical as to whether this is the source of your problem.

I have no idea whether after-market gauges are happy on full battery voltage or whether they need a regulated supply. If they are electronic, I'd guess they probably don't need the regulator.

Cheers,

Richard


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tonymrfixitteam
Member since Dec-25-02
2633 posts (A TTN governor, governor)
May-11-09, 08:04 AM (PST)
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7. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #6
 
The stock 'Smiths' gauges need the voltage stabiliser. I would imagine, aftermarket gauges, unless supplied with there own regulator, should run off full voltage.
Maybe best to ask the supplier?
When you have the gauge installed and functioning, it might be nice to check it's calibration against another mechanical gauge temporarily screwed into the oil gallery.
It could save you a lot of headaches

The other thing is; when the gauge is in, understand what readings you should expect.
Don't get too upset if a hot idle fall to 20 psi or less!

Tony M
74 Spitfire 1500
84 Toyota Pickup
03 VW Golf


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Joe Curry
Member since Oct-20-03
1328 posts (An "official" TTN Senior Wrangler)
May-11-09, 08:25 AM (PST)
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8. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #5
 
   I guess I am missing something here. What gauge are you using and very importantly, what sending unit are you using?

Most modern after-market electric gauges are perfectly happy with the nominal 12 volts provided by the system without any voltage stabilization

If you are using a vintage gauge from some other car, you will need to observe all the details of that application.

What strikes me is that if you are trying to use the gauge with the stock Spitfire sender it will not work. The spitfire sender is a simple switch that is on with pressure and off without pressure.

Joe


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dutch
Member since Oct-24-08
47 posts (Insists on driving in straight lines at autocross events)
May-11-09, 10:16 AM (PST)
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9. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #8
 
   Using an after market gauge (whatever it is that Victoria British is selling that day from China). The oil pressure gauge came with its own sending unit which replaced the stock sending unit. Water temperature gauge doesn't work either which lead me to think the voltage stabilizer might be involved. I have since ruled that out. I am ready to use after market gauges for oil/fuel/water/volts that I can obtain cheaply from my local retailer. I am not concerned with keeping the Spit vintage.

Thanks everyone.

Good grief


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tonymrfixitteam
Member since Dec-25-02
2633 posts (A TTN governor, governor)
May-11-09, 12:06 PM (PST)
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10. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #9
 
Probably time to send the thing back! If you are going to use other aftermarket gauges anyway, you will most likely want them all the same brand.
I don't think I would replace the stock oil pressure light warning sender unit, I think I would want it IN ADDITION to the oil pressure gauge. Especially if you are going for the electrical type, as they are often slow to react.
Use a 'T' or tap into another port in the oil gallery.
How is your Fuel level gauge? if that is working O.K. chances are the voltage stabilizer is O.K. and the non functioning water temp gauge is due to the sending unit, wiring, or possibly the gauge itself.
Quality gauges are usually worth the extra money!

Tony M
74 Spitfire 1500
84 Toyota Pickup
03 VW Golf


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mikecyc72usa
Member since Oct-17-08
52 posts (Believes that Paul McCartney STILL drives a Spitfire)
May-11-09, 03:07 PM (PST)
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11. "RE: Oil Pressure Gauge"
In response to message #10
 
   I hooked up a late TR6 mechanical oil gauge. Works much better than the electric ones I've dealt with.


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