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Old 10-23-2009, 10:45 AM   #1 (permalink)
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shift light/ tach setup questions

Looking for a new setup in my car..I have an old Mallory tachometer with a built in shift light but the light is pretty small..It is also located on the steering column so its not exactly in line of sight..It worked fine before with the old 302 but with the 408 I find the car is a handful and things happen very quickly so I need to keep my eyes on the road...I was thinking about going to something like this.. Auto Meter ...It would clean up my column and let me actually see my stock gauges again but I am not sure I could get use to not having a normal style tachometer....I don't really want to mount a tach on the dash as it is vinyl and there isn't really a convenient mounting spot either....Looking for some advice as to what will work here...
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Old 10-23-2009, 01:00 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

The class I race in does not allow me to use the two step, so I purchased an Autometer 5348 for a launch rpm indicator. The shift light portion works pretty well for what I need it to do. I only use it for launching, because I like the light on my other tach better. The 5348 can get pretty crazy with all sorts of color changes and flashes. I set mine up so that it just comes on at launch rpm. I don't use the warning and over rpm features. The digital tach is ok when just cruising around, but it changes real fast and is kind of tough to read when accelerating on the street and impossible to read at the track. It's pretty small too.

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Old 10-24-2009, 06:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

As Cain mentioned,I would think that small digital display would be very hard to read in any situation other than where the RPMs are steady.

I know you said you didn't want it on the dash but I'll show this as fodder.
It's a small bracket I made up and reuses the existing inner windsheild moulding screw.I did open up one of the speaker perforations to a 1/4" or so to let the wiring pass through.

In an effort to make the tach less noticable,I've toyed with a bracket that attaches with the upper radio bezel and mounts the tach above the radio. With my 5" Autometer and light it just doesn't look right but your smaller Mallory might do fine there.
I also thought about seperating the the two and just putting the tach below the radio and putting the shift light near the drivers A-pillar.



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Old 10-24-2009, 06:46 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

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Originally Posted by 68fastang View Post
I also thought about seperating the the two and just putting the tach below the radio and putting the shift light near the drivers A-pillar.
I tend to agree with this in that when you are shifting using a shift light, you don't need to see the tach too.
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Old 10-24-2009, 12:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

Thanks for the pics fastang...That is a slick setup and I'm sure that would work for me but I just don't want to punch a hole...Even for the wires...How would one go about putting a shift light on the pillar?...I noticed autometer also has a shiftlight in 2 1/16th gauge application as well which might be easier to put in some spots...My concern with a stand alone shift light is not knowing when your getting close since there is no tach sweep to go with it....The shift light I listed says it changes colours as you are approaching the shift point so I thought that might work but really don't know?...I am sure a tach with a big shift light would probably work but it would totally obscure my gauges in the dash which I am trying to get away from......
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Old 10-24-2009, 04:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

With a few runs under your belt (in your car) you will know by the sound of the motor when it is nearly time to shift and you will ignore the tach. The shift light confirms the exact time and offers consistency.
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Old 10-24-2009, 04:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

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Originally Posted by dennis111 View Post
With a few runs under your belt (in your car) you will know by the sound of the motor when it is nearly time to shift and you will ignore the tach. The shift light confirms the exact time and offers consistency.
Absolutely! Plus,when you get some good tires on the car,I doubt you will have time to focus in on the tach.Things happen real fast in a 11sec stickcar.Shucks,when my car was running high 12's I was no longer comfortable trying towatch the tach and HAD to get a light.

frdnut if you do not want to make any holes it's probably not pratical to consider the A pillar.

But if the hole for the wiring is the only thing holding you back from a set up like mine,just run the harness all the way to the lower windsheild moulding,then run it underneath the moulding to end of the dash.You'll just have to be carefull not to put a screw through a wire when reinstalling the moulding.
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Old 10-25-2009, 01:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by dennis111 View Post
With a few runs under your belt (in your car) you will know by the sound of the motor when it is nearly time to shift and you will ignore the tach. The shift light confirms the exact time and offers consistency.
Yes I'm sure your right Dennis..Some traction would help as well so I don't have to counter steer through the first 3 gears and can concentrate on something else,like watching rpms and shift lights...

Fastang can you post a pic of your tach from the driver seat view?
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Old 10-25-2009, 07:24 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

I just put the big Autometer on my colm, off to the side, covers what used to be a botched MSD in dash fast tach, shift light up and down right in line of sight.
I really like the idea of combing two of these ideas, tach and shift light on the dash, and launch light indicator on the colum or vice verse.
Faststang, do you have a pic of the tack set up from the drivers perspective.
My shift light is right in my line of sight, so long as I keep my left hand to the 9 to 10 oclock and not counter steering too much.
Dont know about you all, but I have to generally steer mine right. So long as I get a grip a little low, and dont have to crank the wheel to much, I keep a good eye on the light and tach.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 68fastang View Post
Absolutely! Plus,when you get some good tires on the car,I doubt you will have time to focus in on the tach.Things happen real fast in a 11sec stickcar.Shucks,when my car was running high 12's I was no longer comfortable trying towatch the tach and HAD to get a light.

frdnut if you do not want to make any holes it's probably not pratical to consider the A pillar.

But if the hole for the wiring is the only thing holding you back from a set up like mine,just run the harness all the way to the lower windsheild moulding,then run it underneath the moulding to end of the dash.You'll just have to be carefull not to put a screw through a wire when reinstalling the moulding.
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Old 10-25-2009, 11:04 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

here ya go
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Old 10-25-2009, 08:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

Thanks!
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Old 10-25-2009, 08:45 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

Sweeet, very nice! My instrument panel needs work - prev owner did a bass ackward job of putting in dash guages in, been nice if he had used all the same brand gauges. Does this bracket you fabbed up hold the tach pretty steady, any vibration or bounce?

I like this set up, a small seperate light for launch RPM and I would be good to go.

Thanks Chris
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Old 10-26-2009, 04:30 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

It holds pretty steady.There is some double sided tape between the bracket and the dash pad also.
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Old 11-26-2009, 09:15 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: shift light/ tach setup questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by dennis111 View Post
With a few runs under your belt (in your car) you will know by the sound of the motor when it is nearly time to shift and you will ignore the tach. The shift light confirms the exact time and offers consistency.

Exactly!!! I ran a tach ONCE, scared the pee waddlin' outta me when i looked @ the numbers i was twistin' the old 'grocery getter windsor' (back in the day when windsors wasn't cool :ie in the early 80's, and if wasn't a clev you aint makin any headway) 7800-8000!!! abused it for ten, eleven years like that, my philosophy is shift when it quits pullin'!!!!!
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