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Old 08-14-2012
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Installing engine gauges

I have a old Yanmar GM20 that still runs great. It has idiot lights and alarms, but I always feel like I should have gauges, hopefully to give me a little advance warning of a system failure, and for redundancy. I'm thinking about an ameter, voltmeter, water temp and oil pressure gauge.
How difficult is it to install after market gauges on an old diesel?
Is it worthwhile?
Do I need to buy Yanmar gauges?
If not, any recommendations on gauge manufactures?
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Old 08-14-2012
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Re: Installing engine gauges

You should be able to replace your sending units for the idiot lights with analog sensors matched to gauges, as long as the connecting threads match. Any good quality gauge set should do I'd think. You may have to fabricate your own panel for a good fit, most non marine gauge sets use 'under dash' mounts that may not stand up in a marine environment...
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Re: Installing engine gauges

I have a 3QM30F and put in an OEM brand tach instead, but it may depend on the type of sending unit you have. I used Murphy gauges for the oil pressure and temp since they allow for a separate alarm off of the gauge.
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Re: Installing engine gauges

You might consider using a "T" fitting, if it will fit, allowing you to keep the lights and have the gauges. I have used brass fittings for years without any problem but have read they are subject to vibration fatigue. Steel fitings, although subject to surface rust, may be a better choice?

Paul T
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Old 08-19-2012
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Re: Installing engine gauges

You don't want an ammeter unless you get one with a remote shunt. Older engines with ammeters in their cockpits had the alternator output (i.e., charging wire) go all the way to the cockpit and then back to the batteries in very small wire. Buy a battery monitor and put a voltmeter in your cockpit.
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Re: Installing engine gauges

Quote:
Originally Posted by dabnis View Post
You might consider using a "T" fitting, if it will fit, allowing you to keep the lights and have the gauges. I have used brass fittings for years without any problem but have read they are subject to vibration fatigue. Steel fitings, although subject to surface rust, may be a better choice?
Paul T
I'm having trouble understanding how I install the fitting. Here are pictures of my oil pressure (yellow wire) and water temp sending units. Can somebody explain the process for me?
Thanks!
Attached Thumbnails
Installing engine gauges-dscn0163%5B1%5D.jpg   Installing engine gauges-dscn0164%5B1%5D.jpg   Installing engine gauges-dscn0169%5B1%5D.jpg  

Last edited by L124C; 08-19-2012 at 04:58 PM.
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Re: Installing engine gauges

Looks like things are pretty tight for a "T" fitting? You might be able to install a short piece of pipe as an extender to get room for the "T" fitting. However that might be subject to vibration fatigue and break off, very bad. Looks like the simplest and safest way to go would be to just replace the light sending units with gauge senders.

Paul T
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Old 08-20-2012
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Re: Installing engine gauges

Quote:
Originally Posted by dabnis View Post
Looks like things are pretty tight for a "T" fitting? You might be able to install a short piece of pipe as an extender to get room for the "T" fitting. However that might be subject to vibration fatigue and break off, very bad. Looks like the simplest and safest way to go would be to just replace the light sending units with gauge senders.
Paul T
Thanks. I think I have space for a "T" unless its bigger than I can imagine. I'm tolally ignorant about how these senders work. Whats in the "pipe"? Current? Pressure? I'm trying to figure out how a light/buzzer and gauge operate off the same sender.
How do you attach an extension (solder/brazing)?
I assume if I replace the sending units with gauge units, I lose the lights and buzzers (something I would prefer not to do, as they both have their advantages and disadvantages IMO).
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Re: Installing engine gauges

Look into Murphy gauges. They allow you to have an alarm and light without having to use a T fitting. They are also adjustable to where you want the alarm to go off at.
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Re: Installing engine gauges

Quote:
Originally Posted by remetau View Post
Look into Murphy gauges. They allow you to have an alarm and light without having to use a T fitting. They are also adjustable to where you want the alarm to go off at.
Very good features, didn't know they existed. Better than "T" fittings and seperate senders:


Palmer Johnson Power Systems - EG Series Electric Gauges

Paul T
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