SS Veglia gauge restore part 2 -finale-

I am back from vacation but need a few days to see what’s going on and get back into the swing of things so another rerun for you all. 

Originally posted 7/28/09: Following on my success with the Super gauges intended for my TI and the two Sprint Speciale gauges, I decided tackling the last gauge for the SS was the thing to do yesterday when I spent some hours at the shop.

Outwardly the Tachometer was the middle child, not so cosmetically usable as is as the tri-gauge and not so obviously water damaged as the Speedometer. Functionally it was not much better off than the Speedometer. This is how it went:

tach front beforeI would probably have paid $40 for this on eBay and been disappointed when I received it if I didn’t know then what I know now. Needles are pointed where they belong but other than that it looks bad. At least the plastic insert is not yellowed.

back beforeObviously not stored ideally. This cleans up pretty good with light bead blasting.

gauge ring plus glass beforeOnce the trim ring tabs were bent away a little leverage was required to separate this from the body. Note the glass, glass insert, trim ring and rubber are all fused together by rust.

face beforeLots to do but it is apart now. That powdery white is probably mineral salt leached from something else it shared the box with when they got wet. I believe efflorescence is the term for this.

glass mount ring beforeThe glass was rusted to this insert. I bead blasted it then painted it front and back with primer followed by flat black.

guts before oneLooks like some water sat pooled in here for a while. Rust seen in the foreground is stuck to the rubber mounting buffer.

guts beforeThis all has to come apart. To remove the needle you hold the aluminum wheel the post attaches to and pull it off. Had I been thinking I would have marked the relationship of the aluminum wheel to the body with the needle on the post to make sure it went back together the same way. We’ll see how it goes.

oil gauge face beforeThis is the oil pressure part of the gauge before. The mechanism was clean and the needle returned as it should so I just cleaned the face.

oil gauge face afterHere’s the face after. I use 3M hand glaze on the spots, rub it gently then polish it down with one of those microfiber cloths then clean it with IPA on a lint free wipe. Last step is some high pressure air to blow any dust away.

oil pressure mechnismHere’s the oil pressure mechanism. I didn’t take the time to figure out how it worked but I assume the oil pressure (engine oil is actually piped up to the back of the gauge) pushes on something that is resisted by a spring, the higher the pressure, the farther it pushes the needle against the spring indicating pressure via the needle on the plastic insert markings.

test fitting oil pressureI screwed this into place but later figured out the tach mechanism and oil pressure mechanism have to be loosely assembled together before being tightened down.

redlineWhile cleaning up the gauge face I had to decide what to do about this red-line mark. I left it alone. It’s close to 50 years old after all! Note the rubber and trim ring, they’ll get theirs.

a little corrosion on springThe mechanism itself. Just some corrosion to brush away and points to lubricate. Note the concentration of efflorescence near the spring.

eddy current driveDrive is cleaned, lubricated and ready for reassembly. Note the similarity to the Speedometer drive. Most of these parts are the same between the two.

assembling the faceI seem to have skipped photographing a few steps. Here I have the drive mechanism reassembled to the base, plastic and face that make up the gauge face. All this was cleaned the same way as the oil pressure gauge.

gauge insert glass almost doneHere the newly assembled face and mechanism are in the bucket, the repainted glass support ring and polished glass await assembly. The glass required a lot of care with fine steel wool, a fresh razor blade, mothers mag polish and finally IPA. Came out very nice!

tach second to lastHere’s the back all back together. If I had a cad plating set-up I would be tempted to plate some of this.

tach finalAnd here it is almost back together. I say almost because I had to adjust the needle so it stopped against the post. We’ll see what it takes to calibrate this later I suppose. As I said at the outset, this is mostly a cosmetic operation.

This took me about 2 hours. If all I was doing was polishing and dusting it would have been an hour tops. Anyone need some gauges cleaned? I’m on a roll!

before after xA little before and after for you ‘side by side’ types.


9 thoughts on “SS Veglia gauge restore part 2 -finale-

  1. Hey Matt, I think the term for what’s happening to the metals is electrolysis.
    I believe that efflorescence is related to masonry.
    Electrolysis is a reaction between metal and electrical energy. Electrolysis occurs when electrical current is “leaking” into the water and can come from a variety of things such as improperly grounded electrical devices and power circuits, old electrical devices in contact with the water, batteries in boats, etc. Also, since this process includes a stronger reaction agent (electricity), the process is much quicker than corrosion.

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