In addition to this post being a regular "How I did it" post, it's also a "How do you want it done" - for the cars owner. With this gauge and panel set-up, the gauges will fit from the top and bottom of the beveled aluminum instrument plate, both ways taking some custom work to fit and each method of fitment giving a different look to the cluster - and therefore the dash. Of course one way looks best to me (and of course will take the most custom work....) - but it's not MY car to decide.
Here are the gauges inserted from the backside:
....and here they are fitted from the top-side:
You can guess by these two which way I prefer them!
Whenever someone does a job for you, especially if you're not an expert in the field, you have to accept that the work has been done right. I have often seen work done by people - from professionals to friends - that is so shoddy it's down-right embarrassing when you tell someone you paid to have it done! I don't want to do work like that....
Which is why I spend the time I do to get it done right:
I started by stripping a small amount of the plastic insulation off five 10" lengths of wire, crimping on 5 ring ends and also cutting 5 pieces of shrink tubing.
Each crimped end was them soldered so as to give a fail-proof connection and ground:
Finally, a length heat-shrink tubing was slipped over the wire:
....and heated to a tight seal.
I'll use this same method for the other ends, as well as every other wire in the vehicle. In addition to being the right way to connect wires, it looks good too - which is the mark of a professional! :)
Don't forget to check out my website at www.E-tekRestorations.com !