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INT: Retrofitting a New Gauge Cluster (non-specific)

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    INT: Retrofitting a New Gauge Cluster (non-specific)

    Retrofitting a New Gauge Cluster!
    cp[mike] - http://www.****.com/

    It is more a guide on a clean way of creating a plug-and-play harness, to hook up some other sort of cluster. currently the most popular cb7 gauge swap is the prelude cluster, and most of the wiring is a direct match, so thats what i used in this guide. but the actual matching up of wires is up to you to straighten out / research!

    - Soldering supplies
    - Plenty of extra wire
    - Electrical tape
    - Tools for removing stock cluster (screwdrivers)
    - Tools for modifying dashboard and the new cluster to get it to fit
    - Pin/wiring diagrams for stock and new clusters
    - An ability to read and understand said diagrams
    - Do NOT forget the pigtails that plug into the new cluster!
    - Time and patience

    Because of the nature of this guide, there's a lot of room for mistake, as wiring things wrong (easy to do) can lead to blown fuses or burnt electronics. I am not providing any specifics for wiring any particular cluster, so you assume all responsibility for the conversion and affects it may have. Follow directions at your own risk!

    - READ THE WHOLE GUIDE before doing anything.
    - This is a non-specific guide that provides no details about any cluster in particular. You will need to find the pinout/wiring diagrams for your exact car model, and the exact model the new gauge cluster came from. I got my diagrams from Shopkey, but a Helms shop manual will probably have them.
    - If you remove your cluster and cut the plugs off, you can splice the new pigtails directly into the dashboard wiring. I chose to leave the stock wiring intact and make a conversion harness for ease of swapping the stock cluster back in, and that's the process this guide describes.
    - SELECTING A CLUSTER: pick something you think looks good, but MAKE SURE it fits into the dashboard. It won't be perfect, but make sure you're capable of making the changes to make it fit. Using one from a similar car (Accord vs. Prelude, Civic vs. Integra) will make it very easy to match up wires, because manufacturers usually used a very similar wiring and pinout style between many car models.

    STEP 1
    Remove your original cluster from your car (process not covered here), open it up, and remove the main connector plugs (3 in our case) from the corners by unsoldering the pins. I used an extra old parts cluster for the connectors so I didn't ruin my good one.


    STEP 2
    Cut enough lengths of wire to solder to each pin of the connectors you removed in step 1. Go through and solder a wire to each pin. While the insulation of the wire is still hot and soft, stretch the insulation down over the solder connection to make a nice clean looking connection. If you don't do this, make sure you tape around each individual pin (more work in my opinion, and electrical tape eventually fails and starts to peel)


    STEP 3
    Go through and label all of the wires on both the reverse pigtails you created and also the pigtails from the new cluster. Don't just go by pin numbers, double check wire colors! The reverse pigtails you made probably aren't color coded, so plug them back into the stock wiring and check.


    STEP 4
    When everythings labelled, strip the ends of all of the wires and go through and match them up and twist the ends together. Some wont match up, most will (as long as the new cluster is from a similar car). You'll probably notice even some are the same wire colors (reason why I said to check!). The ones that don't match up will most likely be for indicators or features the new cluster has that the old one didn't. In my case, I will be using the ATTS and immobilizer indicators as VTEC and alarm lights. If the new cluster is missing things that the old cluster had, you may need to jumper some wires together or rig something up, or certain parts in the car may no longer work properly (example: putting a coupe cluster in a sedan. Not properly bypassing the indicators for the rear doors will make it so the dome light doesn't work)


    STEP 5
    Test it out! Make sure the bare connections are taped over so nothing shorts, and plug everything into the car. Drive around, use every feature until you were able to make sure everything on the new cluster works properly. If something's messed up, peel the tape off and correct it, but if its all good, make permanent solder connections for all the splicings and tape/heatshrink over them all. Remember that if a gauge or light isn't working, it may not be a wiring issue, as you'll probably be using a used cluster and bulbs may be burnt out. Don't get stuck checking and rechecking wiring, check everything.

    STEP 6
    You'll now need to make the proper changes to get the new cluster to actually FIT into the dashboard. It may require drilling, trimming, gluing, cutting, whatever... Since every cluster is different, this part is up to you.'re done! For the next couple weeks, keep an eye out on how everythings working.
    Last edited by cp[mike]; 10-02-2008, 10:08 PM.

    - 1993 Accord LX - White sedan (sold)
    - 1993 Accord EX - White sedan (wrecked)
    - 1991 Accord EX - White sedan (sold)
    - 1990 Accord EX - Grey sedan (sold)
    - 1993 Accord EX - White sedan (sold)
    - 1992 Accord EX - White coupe (sold)
    - 1993 Accord EX - Grey coupe (stolen)
    - 1993 Accord SE - Gold coupe (sold)
    Current cars:
    - 2005 Subaru Legacy GT Wagon - Daily driver
    - 2004 Chevrolet Express AWD - Camper conversion

    ohhh that extra guage cluster i gave you came in for something good! cant wait mike..

    sigh to many projects lol


      nice write up......deff a project i want to tackle when i start the build up on my nrew cb.......and deff seems i got my solderin skills up haaaa!! but i am gettin off topic!!! GOod work man!!!!
      " The value of life can be measured by how many times your soul has been deeply stirred " - Soichiro Honda


        Originally posted by excalibur02
        ohhh that extra guage cluster i gave you came in for something good! cant wait mike..

        sigh to many projects lol
        yeahhhhhhh, too bad it took like, over a year to actually get around to installing it. lodollar92lx's thread made me want to finish it, and i figured it was something i could work on while its POURING RAIN outside. i actually think the parts cluster i took the plugs from is one that you gave me a long time ago... i dont ever remember owning a broken cluster, and this one has BAD written on the sticker

        - 1993 Accord LX - White sedan (sold)
        - 1993 Accord EX - White sedan (wrecked)
        - 1991 Accord EX - White sedan (sold)
        - 1990 Accord EX - Grey sedan (sold)
        - 1993 Accord EX - White sedan (sold)
        - 1992 Accord EX - White coupe (sold)
        - 1993 Accord EX - Grey coupe (stolen)
        - 1993 Accord SE - Gold coupe (sold)
        Current cars:
        - 2005 Subaru Legacy GT Wagon - Daily driver
        - 2004 Chevrolet Express AWD - Camper conversion


          Good right up!!!!


            Sick man...


              yes yes! more wiring. nice DIY. we were in dire need of a new one. good initiative mike!
              - 92 LX coupe
              - 96 EX wagon (sold)


                this is awesome...i foresee a couple of dash swaps to come from this

                Originally posted by fizzbob7
                first off, don't be a sissy bitch.....that's what you're being
                Originally posted by ACC0RD22
                no need to get sand in your vagina over this guys.
                So. Cal OUTLAWZ


                  great mod~!!!!

                  you can acutally make yourself a kit and i bet some people here would love to use it!!!

                  i want to do that mod, it looks sexxy.
                  What makes me laugh about forums, is that no matter how much you try to help someone, they dont take the advice. Go ahead and do it the hard way.

                  You got to respect what you drive, and appreciate what you have, making the best of what you got. and if that means putting CAI, HID's, a phat stereo system, and a idiot in the drivers seat...then so be it!



                  I love nooBs...They make me look good


                    god that looks so complicated but very good right up.


                      Wow! Wiring makes me want to You do it very well how ever nice write up man
                      I My Honda
                      Check out my Ride Here
                      09-11-01 NEVER FORGET


                        what kind of cluster gauge are you using in your car?
                        Henry R
                        1992 Accord LX R.I.P
                        1993 Accord EX OG since 'o3
                        Legend FSM

                        'You see we human beings are not born with prejudices, always they are made for us,
                        made by someone who wants something' -1943 US War Department video


                          Very nice write-up sir.
                          1993 Honda Accord LX 5spd Sedan [2005-2007]
                          1994 Honda Accord LX 5spd Sedan [2001-2004]
                          Currently daily:
                          1990 Honda Accord EX 5spd Sedan [2012-Present]


                            quick question....

                            what file in the Accord supplement would I find the schematics for our cluster?
                            I have the Ab0ve 91 Accord Service Manual and Supplement

                            edit: nevermind.... found it on shopkey 5

                            Thanks for the writeup, mike
                            Last edited by Phempa; 08-22-2006, 04:42 AM.


                              what happens id u go from a analog to digital miles readout like from a cb cluster to a s2k cluster how do u change that ovcer to read it??
                              TUCKIN' 19's sold