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Dixco Tach Wiring.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by dlotraf, Apr 1, 2012.

  1. dlotraf
    Joined: Apr 7, 2010
    Posts: 113

    dlotraf
    Member

    I searched through several older threads on Dixco tach, looking for a schematic for the internal wiring, and discovered many guess's and incorrect methods for wiring these tach's.

    So here it is. 60's (at least) Dixco tach's have three wires. I have three a model 97, a 3-5665 (which was made for NAPA) and a late 60's which at this moment I do not have the number handy. All three have three wires.
    Black, White, Green.

    Correctly wired
    Green - Sender to - (neg) side of coil, or tach terminal on a HEI dist.
    White - Ground
    Black - + to either + side of coil, or ignition terminal from Ign switch.

    No one seams to understand the lack of a red wire, and most want to use white for red. Modern tachs use 4 wires, one red. Actually it is perfectly logical if you are used to working on the electrics of older cars. In the 50's and 60's I know for sure, Black was mostly used as a Hot Color. I recently studied 50's and 60's Ford and Chevy wiring diagrams and very little (if any) red wires were used. Also Green was rarely a ground. Black was mostly if not always a hot color.

    Another tidbit if the bulb is bad on one of these 3 wire tachs, it either will not work or read incorrectly. If you unhook the ground it will work, (may not read correctly). My guess is it picks up a ground from bad bulb or may be a back feed. With ground hooked up won't work at all or reads really low. I discovered this today on that NAPA blue line tach. Someone tore it apart and pulled wires loose from board. I finally found a fuzzy picture here and was able to rewire it. So since in my searches I found more questions than answers on the correct hook up of these tach's I thought I'd pass it along.

    Also None of the Dixco tachs I have ever found require a sending unit. If they don't work when hooked up this way, some componet is bad. Just remember if no light operates, put a bulb in before you tear it apart, or condemn it to the neat, (but non functional) parts shelf.

    Hope this helps someone out.
     
    Packrat, Kan Kustom and scotty t like this.
  2. dubcee
    Joined: Jan 24, 2008
    Posts: 486

    dubcee
    Member

    Your wiring chart contradicts everything I have ever read on Dixco wiring.
    Green -side of the coil
    White light bulb
    Black ground
    Do you have your Dixco 3 wire hooked up the way you show, and it works?
     
    Bandit Billy likes this.
  3. MonteSS
    Joined: Feb 8, 2007
    Posts: 82

    MonteSS
    Member

    I hooked up a Dixco model 97 Tach in my truck tonight following this dlotraf's process.

    Green - Sender to - side of coil
    White - Ground
    Black - to the + side of coil,

    What I though was a bad tach is now working well. Really appreciate this thread.

    Thanks!!!
     
  4. dbowl
    Joined: Jan 25, 2009
    Posts: 8

    dbowl
    Member

    dlotraf, your instructions helped me as well. Installed a HOUSER brand, much like the Dixco, in a 62 Falcon 6 cyl. Exactly as you explained. Thanks.
     

  5. popman
    Joined: Jan 17, 2011
    Posts: 7

    popman
    Member
    from omaha,ne

    will this tach work on a 6-volt system ?
     
  6. stevekantercool
    Joined: Jun 18, 2007
    Posts: 6

    stevekantercool
    Member

    I have a Dixco 97. I have three wires, Green, black, and white.

    The white wire is not attached to anything in or on the tach.

    Where does the white wire get attached to on the tach?

    Any and all help would be appreciated.

    Thank you.
     
  7. no55mad
    Joined: Dec 15, 2006
    Posts: 1,897

    no55mad
    Member

    Could you take the cover off and take a pic? I recently posted on a NAPA tach which may be made by Dixco. If so, when you get the back off, on the NAPA, 2 of the wires went directly to the light bulb socket. The -coil wire was soldered to the circuit board.
     
  8. BLUMEANIE
    Joined: Apr 26, 2011
    Posts: 183

    BLUMEANIE
    Member
    from St. Louis

    For the record... I just hooked up my 6v Dixco tach in my '51 3100 as dlotraf instructed... Green - Sender to - negative side of coil / White - to ground /
    Black - to switched positive (at ignition switch) ...and it works perfectly.

    I originally had the black and white reversed and while the bulb lit up the needle did not respond.
     
    sko_ford likes this.
  9. High5
    Joined: Jul 2, 2012
    Posts: 185

    High5
    Member

    After reading this thread, I thought this schematic might solve your questions for hookup. These diagrams come from the box to a Dixco model 97.

    [​IMG]
     
    jimmy six and loudbang like this.
  10. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,802

    belair
    Member

    Thanks a million, Mac.
     
  11. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,802

    belair
    Member

    The green wire is soldered to the circuit board, the other two wires go deeper into the tach. I am not going any deeper into it, as things tend to fall apart on me. Hope this helps.
     
    vtx1800 likes this.
  12. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,802

    belair
    Member

    Thanks all-I hooked mine up as per Dixco's instructions from !ac's post, and it worked. Reversed the black and white wires, nothing happened.
     
  13. pressuredrop
    Joined: Feb 12, 2009
    Posts: 60

    pressuredrop
    Member
    from mesa AZ

    Thanks alot, im going to hook up my old Dixco 97 tach when I get home from work. It was a $10.00 swapmeet find, I hope it works.

    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  14. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 651

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    I just picked up a Dixco model 793, looks just like a Sun Super Tach.. I haven't hooked it up yet but wanted to check everything over before I install it in the car. How do I get to the light bulb to replace it? I got as far as taking the back cover off. I see two empty holes that look like a light socket would fit, but no socket or wires that show one was there... im kinda afraid to dig deeper.
     
  15. ShortyLaVen
    Joined: Oct 13, 2008
    Posts: 651

    ShortyLaVen
    Member

    Hooked it up and it seems to work good. Gonna throw my timing light tach on there tonight to check its accuracy. I don't see the light on, but its pretty bright out today so I'll check again after it gets dark. If nothin else it sure does look right!!
     
  16. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 8,802

    belair
    Member

    My light didn't work either.
     
  17. greaser 35
    Joined: Feb 15, 2010
    Posts: 720

    greaser 35
    Member
    from FRANCE

    Hi guys
    I'm buy a 97 Dixco tachometer for my 6 v 6 cyl and positiv ground,
    Small question
    What is that I have to remove resistor or not,I'm not sure o_O
    [​IMG]
    Thanks ;)
     
  18. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,260

    Gman0046
    Member

    It's just not late model tachs that use four wires. I'm a big user of vintage Sun Super Tach ll's (no box required) all use four wires.Black- ground, Green- trigger, Red- 12v power, white - light.

    Gary
     
  19. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 10,249

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Old thread but I remember years ago the guys who connected the positive wire to the positive on the coil had trouble. Problem was it's not 12+ volts and was the resister volts.
     
  20. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,286

    metalman
    Member

    Hmm. Reading this reminded me I have an old Dixco tach I found in a truck I bought. Just dug it out, don't see a model number but it's small, 2 1/4 face and a bullet shaped housing. 2 wires, green and tan. Any ideas? I suppose the tan might of been white but aged but the tan is an even color all over. When I get a chance guess I'll pull it apart and look to see if I'm missing a black.
     
  21. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 30,185

    Mr48chev
    Member

    Had that same tach back in the 60's and early 70's and probably have it in the file cabinet in the shed. I am thinking it had 4 wires. Hot, ground coil and light. Had it in my 69 Cutlass and then in my 48 for a long time.
     
  22. metalman
    Joined: Dec 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,286

    metalman
    Member

    OK, took mine apart. It's a model 47. Green wire goes to the circuit panel, tan (and it is definitely tan) is soldered to the light bulb base. Missing wire I assume was black soldered to the light bulb pin. I'm assuming other then using the tan in place of the white I just got to add the missing black and try it out.
    I can't believe there is not a socket for the bulb, it's just stuck into a hole on the board and wires soldered direct to it.
    Also I find interesting the bulb is green. DSC_0250.JPG DSC_0248.JPG DSC_0249.JPG
     
  23. greaser 35
    Joined: Feb 15, 2010
    Posts: 720

    greaser 35
    Member
    from FRANCE

    Btt!!!
    In my 6V 6 CYLINDERS Ford & positive ground
    I'm I connected as indicated on the plan, but it does not work, I connected well the black on the ground, the green on primary distributor and the white? Am I obliged to connect him on ignition switch Or what is that I can connect it somewhere else?
    Thanks for your help
     
  24. greaser 35
    Joined: Feb 15, 2010
    Posts: 720

    greaser 35
    Member
    from FRANCE

    It's OK ,
    I'm connected the black to the ground & green on primary distributor and it's work good !!!no neccessary to connect the white !!!
     
  25. Piewagn
    Joined: Mar 25, 2009
    Posts: 1,370

    Piewagn
    Member

    I know this is an old thread, but I found it with a search. I have this identical Dixco 47 tachometer. It was inoperative...the bulb was bad and the OP said they can be inop with bad bulb. So I replaced the bulb and now it’s inaccurate. The difference between the one in the photo and mine is, mine doesn’t have the thermistor I’ve identified in the photo. Might the issue be because of the dual point layout of the distributor? Any experts out there that can tell me that is my issue and need to install one? Any input would be greatly appreciated fellas! It’s in my coupe with a 59A-B with a stock distributor.....thank you!!
    10975F55-4077-42E7-A239-B873114E3922.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2021
  26. TrailerTrashToo
    Joined: Jun 20, 2018
    Posts: 1,120

    TrailerTrashToo
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Are you sure that is a thermistor. Capacitors also come in that disk configuration. I suspect that there is a capacitor on your circuit board - it just has a different form factor (the meter movement tracking RPM requires a resistor-capacitor circuit). The fact that it now works makes me believe that it is now a calibration issue. Back in the day, many tachometers came ready for 4, 6 and 8 cylinders. The instructions had you cut out resistors or jumper wires for the cylinder count of your engine.

    Also, is the replacement light bulb the same part number as the bulb that you removed. A brighter or dimmer light bulb will have a different hot resistance.

    Define inaccurate - Post #17 shows a resistor across the meter terminals (inside the cup). You "might" be able to calibrate the tach by varying the resistance across these meter terminals. Also look for signs of cut jumper wires

    Russ
     
    loudbang likes this.
  27. Piewagn
    Joined: Mar 25, 2009
    Posts: 1,370

    Piewagn
    Member

    Thanks for the input Russ. I’m taking it apart again when I get home from work and I’ll give it a closer inspection and see if there’s any witness marks of a jumper or other solder points... I’ll get some pics too and post back....thank you!!
     
  28. MeanGene427
    Joined: Dec 15, 2010
    Posts: 1,963

    MeanGene427
    Member
    from Napa

    My 56 Bird has a Dixco, still in the car- hopefully there is a wire from the tach with the coil wire. Now I have to go look lol
     
  29. Kan Kustom
    Joined: Jul 20, 2009
    Posts: 2,689

    Kan Kustom
    Member

    When I first opened this thread I thought I would look at my Dixco tach that has been on my car since I bought the tach years ago and post the findings but after reading on it looks like several others have.
     

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