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S1 Sticky Tach


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Hey Guys,

 

The Tach on my Federal S1 is sticking. I've pulled on the front of the glass using tape and can get the needle clear but as soon as I let it go it starts rubbing on the needle and it sticks again. Is there an easy fix without taking the binnacle apart? And if I have to do that does any one have a recommended fix once its open?

 

I don't get how the needle hits the glass to begin with but hey.

 

Brian

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I think you'll find the needle is pushed onto a thin shaft that comes from the mechanism behind the unit and it has probably come loose. Only long term fix is to push the needle firmly back onto the  shaft and you'll have to remove at least part of the display (but not the binnacle) to do the job

Normally Aspirated - and lovin' it!

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Hi,

 

I'm not sure if the needle has actually come off or not because it does work when I pull on the front glass. Moves up and down quite happily. I' wondering if simply pushing on the front glass above the rotation point would be enough to re-seat it.

 

Brian

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The needles bend upwards and hit on the glass. Mine have done the same. The fix is to heat them up enough to bend them back but not so much as to damage them. I have my dash out but it's not a job I'm looking forward to!!

 

Paul.

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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I fixed mine in situ. Pull the glass or the surround between the rev counter and Speedo and fix to the wheel. I used electrical wire. Then hear with a hair dryer and leave for as long as possible. The combination of time and heat may keep the glass clear of the needle.

Mark

Look what Q's brought us. Isn't it nice!

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Hi Mark,

 

When you say pull the glass, you mean you fished a small bit of wire behind the surround. In just in front of the glass of the Tach and then out in front of the glass to the speedo and then tied that to the steering wheel so you could pull it away from the needle? Then you heated the surround and glass with a hair dryer?

 

Brian

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Hi Mark,

 

So I tried fixing it as you suggested in situ, I slipped a zip-tie behind the metal, in front of the glass between the speedo and tach and pulled it forward. This worked perfectly and the needle fell to the right spot but unfortunatly as soon as I let go it binded up again. I've attached it to the steering wheel like this so hopefully it will stretch a bit and stay like that. Otherwise I think I'm going to have to properly open it up and remove the dials out the bottom of the binnacle.

 

Brian M.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Brian,

 

   I've fixed these in the past as follows:

 

   Remove the binnacle and gauge cluster, and have the gauge cluster out of the car, indoors, on a table or workbench.  Remove the strip of warning lights to protect it from getting little cracks in the labels from the heat.  Cut some paper napkins and lay them on the gauge faces, followed with a layer of foil, to protect them from heat.   Blast the speedo/tach needles with a hair dryer so the soften, and bend them back into place.  You may need a popsicle stick or something to bend them with, because the heat on your finger tip can get intense!   You may also need to place something under the middle of the needle to bend it at the right spot.  

    Find some method to hold the needles down so they don't spring back -- such as resting something suitable on them, or similar.   Allow to cool.    With whatever is holding the needles down still in place, blast with more hair dryer heat and allow to cool a couple of more times.   Don't be afraid to overdo it and get them pointing toward the faces a bit, as they will ultimately curve back out a little bit.  Most of all, BE VERY GENTLE AND CAREFUL TO NOT BREAK THEM!!

 

 - Tony

Tony K. :)

 

Esprit S1s #355H & 454H

Esprit S2.2  #324J

1991 Esprit SE

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Hi Tony,

 

Thanks for the detailed procedure. I've gotten my needles un-stuck without taking the binnacle apart. I noticed that the needles were only sticking at the bottom but moved freely at the top. So I removed the binnacle snaps, the two that pop out below the bottom of the binnacle and placed a thin rubber washer (<2mm thick) between the metal screen and the green surface of the instruments and put the snaps back on. The needles are still bent a bit but the larger gap between the inside of the glass and the needles has provided just enough room to fix the problem for the moment. I will eventually need to open the binnacle and bend the needles flat but for the moment this was an easy fix that works.

 

Brian M.

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