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Genuine VZ Binnacle Gauge Install (Complete)

Discussion in 'VY Holden Commodore (2002 - 2004)' started by RayNixon, Mar 5, 2017.

  1. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    EDITS AFTER PROJECT COMPLETION (June 2018)
    So I set out on a mission to install VZ gauges in my VY...

    In the last few weeks I have learned. The VY oil sender is only a digital sender (binary, On/Off, Oil pressure/no oil pressure) This is hooked up to the ECU as an indication/warning lamp (This is incorrect, All LS1s have oil pressure sensors that tell the PCM what the oil pressure is). This is why when ever gauges(of any type) are hooked up to a VY there has to be a second (analog) sender "T'd" in to feed a signal to the gauges. (An additional sensor is always used to isolate aftermarket mods from OEM circuits)

    The VZ came factory with an analog oil sender, which reads from 0-80ish PSI straight to the ECU for indication/warning and well as diagnostics can tell oil pressure (partially correct, although the factory LS1 sensor is a digital transducer type which outputs 0-5v depending on the oil pressure)

    Now where it gets tricky. In 2005 GM introduced a new internal electronic messaging system called GM-LAN (better know as SWCAN) this is built on the CAN BUS protocol. So in the VZ's the Oil pressure was sent to the ECU or BCM (not sure which one) and the signal was then converted to be sent out through the vehicles GM-LAN. This GM-LAN is a single wire that is present in manny locations through out the VZ, including the instrument cluster.(this is just 100% wrong. ignore all of this)

    Now, I'm not 100% sure if the VY has any kind of CAN BUS coms happening, but if there is, it is not broadcasting an Oil pressure reading. (absolute no CAN in these cars, which is cleared up in the next post.... but. the VZ does broadcast the Oil pressure over the secondary serial comms line and the VY does not.)

    Now to date, I have only read of one person who has installed these gauges... and they sent the gauge to be modified to accept a standard analog oil pressure sender unit. costing $200-$300.

    I plan to build a CAN BUS injector unit that will converter the standard analog sender unit and broadcast the oil pressure as a CAN BUS message.

    I currently have everything in place ready to build my module.

    Dash.jpg

    This is the harness i built, that taps into the plug that powers the climate control screen.

    this is 4 wires
    Pink - Ignition
    Orange/Yellow - constant 12v
    Brown/White - Illumination
    Yellow/Black - Ground

    the second plug on the gauge side of the harness is where i will plug my module in and inject the CAN BUS message on the green wire to the gauges. (this plug is now gone)

    Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 7.02.26 pm copy.jpg


    This is the Plug that powers the climate control screen it has all the required wires to hook up everything but the Green CanBus wire.


    Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 7.10.03 pm copy.jpg Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 7.10.15 pm copy.jpg


    So I am currently at this point.
    everything is working, but the oil gauge, i have my extra plug tapped in, which has Ground, Power, CAN-BUS wire and the two wires off the oil sender. From here i should have have to plug my module into this spare plug, and i will have oil gauge.

    Screen Shot 2017-03-05 at 7.16.43 pm copy.jpg

    Tune in next week for the building of the CAN-BUS injector.

    PS, If i am mistaking with any of my information, please feel free to correct/educate me. (i was mistaking a lot)
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2018
    Trayner likes this.
  2. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    I am having second thoughts on wether the VZ actually used SW CAN to control the binnacle gauges. i only found one post weeks about referring to the vz using SW CAN to control the gauges. i cannot find that post again. nor can i find anything information that suggest VZ actually had GM-LAN (or SW CAN)
     
  3. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    So fellow forum user Tazzi has set me straight with the information required.

    The VZ did not have single wire CAN...

    the gauges simple work over the ALDL1 serial line in the VZ...

    i have the info i need i think. just need to send the correct message to the gauges....

    its a long haul. but i will get there... stay tuned.
     
  4. blakehowe

    blakehowe New Member

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    hey mate, did you ever get your vz oil gauge working in your vy?

    I am in same position, wanting to fit the VZ binnacle gauges into a VY SS series 2.
     
  5. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    well, long time no update. sorry about that.

    but. I did find sometime tonight to play with my prototype parts that i ordered over 12months ago...

    i got the gauge working. not quite as i originally thought. but it works. it requires a (almost) non reversible mod to the original gauge circuit.

    i say almost non reversible because you could reverse it, but it would be a pain.

    the mod is all contained within the original gauge housing. and still plugs in with just the one original plug. you will require an after market oil sender just as per other after market gauges. which will require you to run two additional wires from the oil sender to the binnacle harness

    my mod uses the original gauge stepper motor, it is not just a simple swap of the inner workings.

    i hope to have my gauges back in the car and working tomorrow.
     
  6. blakehowe

    blakehowe New Member

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    Thank you for the reply!

    wow awesome work, sounds great, looking forward to hearing how it goes once you get them back into the car!

    also I have recently just found out, about the upper dash trim being different depending on if the car had a console lid or the gauges, the dash trim I have bought came with the console lid and have read up that I will need to do some sort of modifications to get the gauges to sit flush with the dash trim that I have bought, did you have to do a similar thing to your dash in order for the gauges to sit nicely?
     
  7. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    well. for anyone following along at home....

    Although I did have my gauge working... it was working fine on the bench under test conditions, but too much noise present in the car and the gauge is unstable. some would say better then nothing, but its not good enough for me, and not good enough to pass onto fellow members.

    I have ordered a new oil sender to fix the problem... which will require slightly different electronics, but the result will be a perfect noise free oil gauge...

    it has been a long haul for sure. but i have learnt a lot.

    i will let you know when i get it sorted. i should be able to offer a service where i can convert a gauge and send it back to people.
     
  8. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    ok people... I officially did it...

    I have now developed a mod chip for the VZ binnacle gauges which is completely contained inside of the original housing.

    The mod chip takes control of the Oil gauge and over writes the signal coming from the serial bus. (this makes the oil gauge no longer usable via the serial bus)

    The mod chip requires its own oil sensor. The new sensor is wired into the gauges though the original binnacle loom plug using spare pins that were previously unused... to the unknowing person, it appears from the outside 100% factory.

    It was a very long haul. I got there in the end. In my opinion, it was not worth the time I invested. But.... I did it.

    If anyone is interested in this mod. send me a message and we can talk, I can mod you're gauge for you..
     
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  9. Blue Monaro

    Blue Monaro New Member

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    Nice work Ray! I knew someone would would eventually work it out.

    The 100% factory look is exactly what I want for my Monaro. Now off to find the blue binnical guages and dash trim.

    So did you just use an aftermarket VDO analogue sender and modify the electronics on the back of the binnicle to accept the signal?
     
  10. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    I started with the SAAS oil sender that was in my car when i got it... then switched to a VDO analogue sender.. then finally settled on a 3 wire electronic transducer sender...

    transducer is the way to go, cheaper, no electrical noise interference which is what i was having problems with the analogue senders.

    and yes, three wires straight onto the three spare pins in the original plug, and modified the gauge adding a chip to read the transducer signal and operate the gauge. sounds simple i guess.. but took a bit to nut out the software and hardware combination.
     
  11. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    So i brought a second SS cluster with green LEDs and the same instrument dials that are in my cluster. I swapped the dials so they match the fuel and temp dial. I also swapped the white LEDs out for Green ones to match.

    finally happy with everything. oil pressure gauge working and reading accurate (as far as i can tell). happy with the end result.

    next mission is to put a cosmos purple monaro cluster in. i want to retain the SS and V8 logos in the cluster, so im planing on cutting the centre two faces out and gluing them together behind the cluster face rings so i have monaro purple outside faces and original ss inside faces. honestly, i don't why i even bother.


    IMG_2809.jpg
     
  12. Ed Calais

    Ed Calais New Member

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  13. Ed Calais

    Ed Calais New Member

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    Hi Ray, are you offering a service to convert Vz binnacle gauges to work like yours in a VY? Please let me know how much to do mine. Regards. Ed
     
  14. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    Yes I am mate. I’ll send you a message. I have a few options. Not a simple flat price.
     
  15. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    as a matter of interest. I picked up a diagnostic cable from envyous customs. The oil gauge reads 100% accurate to the OEM LS1 oil pressure reading from the ECU.
     
  16. Ed Calais

    Ed Calais New Member

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    Hi Ray, I forgot to mention my vy is a v6. The gauge mod might not work the same as it does on a v8. Not sure if oil pressure is different. Thanks for messaging prices on various kit options. Regards E
     
  17. RayNixon

    RayNixon Member

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    This will work perfectly fine with any engine. My kits does not care what engine you have.
     
  18. realmadmick

    realmadmick New Member

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    hi ray can you send the info about the vz to vy gauges thanks
     

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