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Old 08-29-2013, 01:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

A few months back my speedo needle started ticking and bouncing something fierce, like 0-80mph swings. Low frequency, too, like every .5-1 second.

I did what any proper gearhead would do and disconnected the cable from the speedo.

Finally got around to replacing it with a new cable, but it's still ticking audibly and bouncing. Well...not really bouncing, but vibrating/jiggling, probably 1-2 mph, much higher frequency, like cards in your bike spokes when you were a kid. Works fine otherwise.

I just noticed this morning that the odometer's not working any more.

I'm assuming my actual speedo/odometer unit is shot (it's only 50 years old...), but before I drop $80 for a replacement from Falconparts.com, I figured I'd check to make sure there's nothing I'm missing.

Is there some nuance to screwing the thing in/together that I'm missing (getting the square part of the cable in there right?) I'm assuming you put it in and tighten it up...what more is there?

Thanks
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Old 08-29-2013, 01:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Sometimes with the replacement cable the center part is slightly too long and pressure gets put on it when you have it tightened down firmly. Try loosening the nut slightly at the speedo cluster and see if it helps. If so try shortening it slightly. Make sure you use the recommended lube for the cable. And check the condition of the driven gear that goes into the trans.

If the odometer has quit maybe the whole thing is in need of lubrication or is just plain worn out. I believe some of the venders sell replacement speedo movements.

You don't say what year it is. If 65 or earlier the internal parts are the same as early mustangs so a mustang vender may have what you need. If 66 or 67, mustangs and comets are also sources.
R
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Old 08-29-2013, 02:56 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Did you replace just the cable inside the tube it goes though or did you replace all of it ? If only the cable then the tube housing it goes though may have a worn spot or break in it with enough damage to make it try to hang up.
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Old 08-30-2013, 07:20 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

oh.. I couldnt resist... sorry..

get a bigger speedo (bathing suit).. maybe board shorts will work better.
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Old 08-30-2013, 09:59 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

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Originally Posted by Comechero65 View Post
Sometimes with the replacement cable the center part is slightly too long and pressure gets put on it when you have it tightened down firmly. Try loosening the nut slightly at the speedo cluster and see if it helps. If so try shortening it slightly. Make sure you use the recommended lube for the cable. And check the condition of the driven gear that goes into the trans.

If the odometer has quit maybe the whole thing is in need of lubrication or is just plain worn out. I believe some of the venders sell replacement speedo movements.

You don't say what year it is. If 65 or earlier the internal parts are the same as early mustangs so a mustang vender may have what you need. If 66 or 67, mustangs and comets are also sources.
R
What is the recommended lube? Is there a specific product for lubricating speedo cables, or is something like white lithium grease OK?

(I was told to squirt a half tube of lithium grease down the tube and then keep working the cable back/forth, while twisting, etc.)
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Old 08-30-2013, 10:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Some of the auto parts stores used to sell a replacement inner speedo cable kit. They usually came with a small tube of golden colored lube. Have no idea what it is though.

Here's a ford listing for speedo lube- B5A-19581-A. Don't know if it is stil available from ford. You could ask.

Another suggested lube- GM Lubriplate Lubricant # 1052196. Also used to be found in auto parts stores under the Lubriplate label.

From all I've read it needs to be a grease not an oil.
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Old 08-30-2013, 10:35 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

I usually just use some sort of assembly lube.
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Old 08-30-2013, 01:49 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

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Originally Posted by okura_hubby View Post
oh.. I couldnt resist... sorry..

get a bigger speedo (bathing suit).. maybe board shorts will work better.
Watch out, or I'll attach pictures detailing the problem.
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Old 08-30-2013, 02:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

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Originally Posted by 64 futura View Post
Did you replace just the cable inside the tube it goes though or did you replace all of it ? If only the cable then the tube housing it goes though may have a worn spot or break in it with enough damage to make it try to hang up.
Complete unit:
1960-1965 SPEEDOMETER CABLES - Speedometer - Falcon Enterprises
  • I didn't lube it at all. will pull it and coat the inner wire with...some grease like product.
  • How could it be that the speedometer works, but the odometer doesn't?
  • At this point I'm assuming whatever the connection between the speedo drive and Odometer is, it broke. Is anything in there serviceable?
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Old 08-30-2013, 02:48 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Some lubes can stiffen in cooler weather, causing cable twisting or strand damage. Also, most calbe lubes are made to penetrate teh strands to prevent them from wearing against each other. Use a speedometer cable lubricant from the parts store. As far as teh odometer, that could be your primary issue. A worm gear drives teh odometer gears, and if they are worn or skipping, can cause needle vibrations. Still, lube your cable.

David

Dorman sells Panef graphite oil for speedometer cables. Much like Huskey SlickCote speedo cable lube and others, it penetrates into the strands to reduce internal cable wear, while protecting the cable sheath (tube) as well. Regular 'grease' can't do that. The same product is sometimes found a bit cheaper at local hardware stores:

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Old 08-30-2013, 02:53 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Also, does anyone have the correct routing path for the cable under/around/over the transmission?
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Old 09-09-2013, 04:38 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

Auto store recommended white litheum grease.


I tried testing my spare instrument cluster speedo by grabbing the outer collar (which rotates) with my drill (going counter clockwise); drill would not tighten; kept sliding off the collar.


So, I took a plack plastic tie, cut three 1" pieces, wormed them tightly into the cable orifice on the back of the speedometer, tightened the other end in my drill, and it worked just fine.


Spare speedo tested smooth.


With the speed of my drill, the speedometer peaked at about 60 mph, but it was smooth all the way up.

Next, I need to get the energy to pull the front bucket seat, squeeze under the dash, pull out the cluster, test the speedo, and lubricate the cable as required.
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Old 09-10-2013, 09:06 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Bouncing Speedo, replaced cable, still bouncing

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Originally Posted by madscience View Post
Also, does anyone have the correct routing path for the cable under/around/over the transmission?

On a 64 there are two places it can go though the firewall / pan area. The one in my 64 goes out on the left side and along that side and enters the left side of the auto trany. When i bought the car it had a 4 spd that had the cable hook up on the right side. It went out on the right side under the heater duct area and it took a longer cable. The hole that's not being used will have a rubber plug in it. I don't know if all of the early falcons are that way or not.
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