Gauge Problem Solved, and Grille Update

Gauge Problem Solved, and Grille Update

I managed to find some time to continue working on my Ferrari this weekend, and the first thing I tore into was the gauge lighting problem. You may remember the last time I drove my car, I turned on the gauge lights, and two of them didn’t turn on. What’s worse was the needles on both dark gauges swung to the highest increment, but returned to normal once the panel lights were turned off.

A fellow 330 owner correctly pointed out that my problem was probably related to a bad ground, and told me to check this first. Luckily, I was able to pull these two gauges without disturbing any of the adjacent ones, and Michael was right! Once I jumped a good ground source to the gauge bodies, the lights went on, and the gauges read normally. Unfortunately, while I was testing the instrument lights, a wire broke in the back of the switch.

The switch body worked itself lose from all the turning, and broke the wire that was crimped to the bullet connector. Since the center console was removed to hide a good ground source, this wasn’t too hard a fix.  This simple problem of a bad ground found me in the garage for two hours! It’s amazing how often everything has to come apart to fix the smallest thing. It’s a good thing I’ve got practice!

I’m still working on getting the grille together, and here’s an update. François dropped off the partially completed grille assembly with a trusted metal worker. As much as we tried to engineer each piece, it looks like there will still be a need for some custom fitting for my grille. After an assessment, the metal guy says he can easily make things fit, but wanted to know if I had any extra aluminum for him to work with, specifically the curved piece making up one of the sides of the grille shell. Not knowing the alloy of the aluminum and using dissimilar alloys could affect how the aluminum looks when it is polished, and since the attention to detail was so high, why stop now?

Luckily Mike Sewell made some extra pieces when he fabricated the components for the grille, and I still had these pieces. Unfortunately, they were reject pieces, and have some imperfections on the surface from using a worn out roller. These pits could probably be sanded smooth, but I’ll let the metal fabricator decide if he wants to use these pieces. I spoke to Mike, and he remembers using 5052-H32 alloy for the grille, but doesn’t remember the thickness.

I have yet to buy a digital caliper, but I have this pretty accurate caliper I picked up a couple of years ago for $15 bucks. Now if I were only any good at reading vernier scales for inches! There seems to be plenty of guides on the Internet to read vernier scales in metric, but what about english fractions? It looks like 1.8 mm.

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