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Old 12-04-2017, 07:39 PM   #1
dbarton
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Default 240 Dash Top 3-Gauge Pod Mods

As a follow up to the group buy found here: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=332614

I have begun modifying my gauge pod to make it better. My intention is to make it closer to looking like what it should be.

If you've forgotten what a REAL Dash Top Triple Gauge Pod looks like, I've posted a pic below along with the group buy product I bought.

EDIT March 29, 2019: Preview pics of my finished modded pod below bottom pic . . .
More pics after post #95

Dave B.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 3gaugepod3a.jpg (88.6 KB, 648 views)
File Type: jpg podcopy2a.jpg (100.2 KB, 651 views)
File Type: jpg repropod64.jpg (161.5 KB, 84 views)
File Type: jpg repropod71med.jpg (134.9 KB, 67 views)
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:40 PM   #2
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Here's what I have done so far.
(and of course what I began with below it)

More to follow . . . .

Dave B.

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File Type: jpg repropod1a.jpg (129.5 KB, 649 views)
File Type: jpg podcopy2a.jpg (100.2 KB, 61 views)

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Old 12-05-2017, 12:05 AM   #3
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thanks, i got a gb one and am planning to make a a 3 gauge cluster fit in it
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Old 12-05-2017, 09:49 AM   #4
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thanks, i got a gb one and am planning to make a a 3 gauge cluster fit in it
Turns out the original 240 upper in-dash 3 gauge cluster is way too wide to fit in this opening. It would need a lot of cutting and sectioning. So. . . I'll be making MY OWN 3 gauge setup closer to the look of an original dash top pod. A lot of work and experimentation, but I think it'll turn out decent.

Here I have cut some 1/4 inch PVC plastic from McMaster Carr to fit inside the front frame. Most of the cutting/trimming so far has been done with a sawzall, small hack saw, bench grinder, tin snips, a few files and a sanding block. I keep saying I need a belt sander. Someday.

The bench grinder is great for shaping this PVC plastic though.
Dave B.

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Old 12-05-2017, 09:56 AM   #5
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I used two-part Gorilla clear epoxy for plastics to glue it in, then sanded it smooth. This should give it a proper overhang similar to the original.

Dave B.

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File Type: jpg repropod4.jpg (133.4 KB, 618 views)
File Type: jpg repropod5.jpg (115.6 KB, 617 views)

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Old 12-05-2017, 10:36 AM   #6
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This brace was glued on to straighten out the back. There was a rather ugly warp back there. Now ruler straight. It's also made from 1/4 inch PVC from McMaster Carr.

The PVC can be found here: https://www.mcmaster.com/#catalog/123/3637/=1ajvxvt
PN 8747K114. 12 x 12 inches. About $10 plus shipping. They have lots of thicknesses and sizes.

Dave B.
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File Type: jpg repropod6.jpg (66.8 KB, 605 views)

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Old 12-05-2017, 11:15 AM   #7
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Cool Project!
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:20 PM   #8
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Nice! I was planning this too. Got some extra bits from Adam that were either trimmed wrong or not cut. Actually, I haven't opened the package yet what with xmas putting up lights and such...
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:15 PM   #9
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Thanks.

Now things get tricky.

Here's the face plate that will get three 2 inch holes cut into it. EDIT: These holes later changed to 1 7/8 inch. Again, made from 1/4 inch PVC. After cutting the holes, I plan to cut bevels inside the holes. This will be tricky, since I don't have a machine shop. I do have some long shank porting bits. It will take some innovation to see if I can lock a drill down at the right angle (probably in my vise) and then work slowly grinding bevels. We'll see.

There will be a second piece behind this one that will also get three holes to hold the gauges.
Dave B.
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:47 PM   #10
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Nice to see some inspiration, I'm hoping to do something similar
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:59 PM   #11
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Looking good, Dave. What epoxy/glue/adhesive are you using?
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:08 PM   #12
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Looking good, Dave. What epoxy/glue/adhesive are you using?
Good question. It's a simple 2-part epoxy for plastics, metals, etc., clear, made by Gorilla. Says it sets in 5 minutes. That's a lie. I've been leaving it clamped for 24 hours and so far I'm getting good strong bonds.

Dave B.

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Old 12-05-2017, 03:37 PM   #13
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So now I'm thinking a router would be a much better choice for the beveling. Don't have a router and I don't want to buy one for this one project never to be needed again. So maybe I can manage putting a router bit in a drill.

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Old 12-05-2017, 04:21 PM   #14
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Router shmouter. 2" holesaw in a drill press, use a dremel and bevel that's a hair shorter than the thickness of your material. Go slow and give your family benadryl so they're too drowsy to sneak up and startle you...
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Old 12-05-2017, 06:22 PM   #15
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Like I have a drill press. Hahahaha. Maybe when I get around to buying a belt sander.

I do have a Dremel though. I'll look at bevels.
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Old 12-05-2017, 07:21 PM   #16
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Wow, that starting piece looks terrible. You have your work cut out for you. Good job so far.
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Old 12-05-2017, 08:03 PM   #17
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Drill press shmrill press... Get your corded drill and ziptie it to a panini press, give your family benadryl...
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Old 12-06-2017, 01:50 AM   #18
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:13 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbarton View Post
As a follow up to the group buy: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=332614

I have begun modifying my gauge pod to make it better. My intention is to make it closer to looking like what it should be.

If you've forgotten what a REAL triple gauge pod looks like, I have posted a pic below along with the group buy product.
Dave B.
Darn Dave! You post this and you got me thinking! Doing 3 is not much harder than doing one. Hint hint!, serious
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Old 12-06-2017, 09:35 PM   #20
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Darn Dave! You post this and you got me thinking! Doing 3 is not much harder than doing one. Hint hint!, serious
Once you get it down and it comes out nice, it would certainly makes sense to do more as long as you still have patience and a couple extra starting pieces. If you plan on selling, I think you'll have buyers. Is there a profit to be had? Maybe, depending on what you have to buy. But I'm only doing this one for now.
Dave B

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Old 12-14-2017, 08:57 PM   #21
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UPDATE TIME:

The below pics are of a jig I put together. Basically it's holding the front gauge face plate. The second pic is the bottom.

Behind the face plate is another piece of 1/4 inch PVC. The plan is to cut three holes using a 1 7/8 inch hole saw going through both pieces of PVC. I earlier said it would be 2 inch holes. Now it's been changed to 1 7/8.

More in a sec.

Dave
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File Type: jpg repropod8.jpg (127.3 KB, 386 views)
File Type: jpg repropod9.jpg (145.3 KB, 389 views)

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Old 12-14-2017, 09:02 PM   #22
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Once the holes get cut, then I'll use the below 30 degree router bit to bevel the inner edges of the holes. Router bit was like $15 on Amazon. The reason I'm cutting holes through 1/2 inch (two pieces) of PVC is so that bearing on the router bit can ride along the bottom edge, guiding it so it cuts a smooth circle.

The reason for the extra stand-offs on the bottom of the jig is to compensate for the distance between the bottom of the bearing and the beginning of the blade, which is about 1/2 inch.

Dave
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File Type: jpg repropod10.jpg (119.7 KB, 386 views)

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Old 12-14-2017, 09:06 PM   #23
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So the 1 7/8 inch holes have been cut. Here I have set up my drill in a vise so it will be stationary. A drill press would come in handy here.

As I began the cutting, I have discovered a wood router bit really doesn't like cutting plastic, but it does cut. You just have to really keep a really tight grip on the part because that cutting bit likes to grab it and jerk it around. So going super slow seemed to be the best method.

Dave
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File Type: jpg repropod11.jpg (160.8 KB, 385 views)
File Type: jpg repropod12.jpg (199.3 KB, 387 views)

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Old 12-14-2017, 09:09 PM   #24
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Here's the completed bevel cut. It's not as smooth as I had hoped, so I'll need to start sanding to smooth things nicely.

The black marker line I drew around the edge shows the part of this that is actually visible inside the front frame of the main cowl.

That's enough for tonight.
Dave
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File Type: jpg repropod13.jpg (147.4 KB, 387 views)
File Type: jpg repropod14.jpg (127.5 KB, 384 views)

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Old 12-14-2017, 10:10 PM   #25
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Did the group buy piece come with the dash textured top? Nice winter project.
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