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Projects @#$% Dolphin (Narwhal) gauge senders

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Katuna, Jun 30, 2015.

  1. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    Alright, I've looked everywhere trying to find which senders I need for these crappy Dolphin gauges we have. Unfortunately I'm going to have to make due with them since they're already there and the budget doesn't allow for new gauges. Not for the foreseeable future anyway.

    I emailed their tech support and the only response I got was that I have to use their senders. Supposedly proprietary. At $15 each for the oil and water temp the price is fine. I just haven't read a lot of positives on the quality. I don't mind dropping a few more bucks for senders that are accurate and wire terminals that don't break off.

    Okay, shake it off.
     
  2. studebaker46
    Joined: Nov 14, 2007
    Posts: 657

    studebaker46
    Member

    they are cheaply made to say the least Old Dogs the major supplier for hot rod and streetrod parts in st.Louis wont even stock them Tom
     
  3. LOUDERMILK64
    Joined: Sep 13, 2009
    Posts: 50

    LOUDERMILK64
    Member
    from INDIANA

    I bought auto meter gauges and there real crap too, none of them are right!
     
  4. Blownfuel
    Joined: Jun 16, 2005
    Posts: 1,269

    Blownfuel
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yep, and stewart warners aren't any better. I used to calibrate gauges for the Navy and Stewart Warner finally had to ask the Navy for an exception on their gauges that were installed on Cat Marine Diesel engines! Seen an oil pressure gauge as much as 60 psi off!

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  5. raidmagic
    Joined: Dec 10, 2007
    Posts: 1,438

    raidmagic
    Member

    They are a cheap gauge but they work fine. I had them in my t bucket and never had an issue. I checked the water and oil gauges against a set of mechanical gauges I have laying round and they were even with each other.
     
  6. mike bowling
    Joined: Jan 1, 2013
    Posts: 3,506

    mike bowling
    Member

    I thought about using Dolphin gauges in a "low buck" car I was doing, but couldn't get past the goofy "fish" logo- seemed like they belonged in a boat!
     
  7. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    Ok guys, I know. El cheapo. Believe me, I've got that. I'm stuck with them for awhile. I just need my original question answered.
     
  8. ffr1222k
    Joined: Nov 5, 2009
    Posts: 1,118

    ffr1222k
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I have them in a 71 Cutlass and they have been very accurate (so far). The speedometer agrees exactly with a GPS app on my phone.

    You could buy the dolphin gauges and read the resistance of the Dolphin Sender with an ohmeter and buy a sending unit that matches their resistance. You would to do some research to find the correct sender, but I would think that Dolphin would have designed the gauge to work with a readily available sending unit. I know their gas gauge sender matched the stock Oldsmobile sending unit exactly in resistance. I did not change my gas sender when I put the gauges in and the gauge reads accurately.
     
  9. mike bowling
    Joined: Jan 1, 2013
    Posts: 3,506

    mike bowling
    Member

    Did you go to "Dolphin" tech support? Most parts have a manufacturers 800 # you can call listed on the packaging or with the instruction sheet. Didn't mean any disrespect in the previous post; hope you figure it out.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2015
  10. Don't know if this will be of any use to you, but here's some info I got from tech support for a Faze temp gauge. Might be able to do a little experimenting with it.

    Temperature sender resistance specifications (Electric Gauges)


    Temp. °F 100 110 120 130 140 150 160 170 180 190 200 210 220 230 240 250 260 270 280

    Res. Ohms 1022 829 656 508 405 333 256 215 180 148 125 104 88 76 66 58 51 44.5 38.5




    Gerald

    Bosch Automotive Service Solutions LLC

    ACTRON TECHNICAL SUPPORT
     
  11. Maybe they will work better under water !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  12. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    Stop making fun!! Maybe I can paint a horn on it and make them Narwhal Gauges. Narwhals are cool, right? RIGHT?!?

    Gerald-I'll try that range and see if it's close.
     
    8flat likes this.
  13. 1great40
    Joined: Jan 1, 2008
    Posts: 455

    1great40
    Member
    from Walpole MA

    I have them in my 40, The speedo works fine, the temp gauge was off so I had to recalibrate it. The volt meter is OK and the oil pressure seems OK too The gas gauge never worked with the sender that came with it. I talked to their tech support and even sent them the gauge to test out. They told me that the gauge was no good and they couldn't supply a good one since they didn't make the curved glass units anymore. Turns out that the sender for the gas gauge was not the right one. I bought one that's supposed to be the correct range from Auto Meter but haven't installed it yet. All in all, I would not use the Dolphin products again. I'm thinking maybe Stewart Warner or VDO?
     
  14. Model T1
    Joined: May 11, 2012
    Posts: 3,309

    Model T1
    Member

    We live on the opposite coast as the original home office and shop of Dolphin. I'd bought their E-Z-Wire kits and gauges at Daytona car events several times. On one of my cars the oil pressure sending unit was broken. I called over and over. They'd send one but between the cost and shipping I waited till our next trip to Daytona.
    Their office at that time was Bunnel, Fl just north of Daytona and not out of our way for bike events. I think I paid like $15 for the oil sender and they were easy to deal with other than not giving me a new one to replace the damaged one. I still wasn't happy buying a new part when their new part was defective.
    But to answer your question which really wasn't a question...I don't see any question marks! (?) The several sets of Dolphin gauges we've used work fine but the little fish looks stupid. Still we are in Florida so let it pass.
     
  15. jazz1
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,482

    jazz1
    Member

    I installed dolphin gauges and oil sending unit is a POS. I installed a "Equus" live gauge that is accurate..the dolphin oil gauge never goes over 10 psi and neither did the replacement which I had to PAY for ...but keep us posted if you find sending units that work with their gauges. I don't see a fish in mine...
     

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  16. Gman0046
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 6,253

    Gman0046
    Member

    FWIW, needed an oil pressure sender for my Dakota Digital dash. Thought the Dakota sender would be something high tech so ordered one through Dakota. When it arrived it was nothing but a stock AC Delco sender at twice the price of a NAPA one.
     
  17. dickster27
    Joined: Feb 28, 2004
    Posts: 3,139

    dickster27
    Member
    from Texas

    For what it's worth, I think Classic Gauge is the way to go.
     
  18. ago
    Joined: Oct 12, 2005
    Posts: 2,199

    ago
    Member
    from pgh. pa.

    I have used many Auto-meter gauges and never had a problem. Someone on here posted a few years ago and tested them. auto-meter accuracy was good. SW are made off shore and are not as good anymore.
     
  19. vwdave30
    Joined: Nov 21, 2009
    Posts: 457

    vwdave30
    Member

    .
     

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  20. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    Well, they look slightly cooler than dolphins.
     
  21. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,364

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Their the Jedi of the sea
     
  22. Can you try different resistors to find the value you need? what, most are around 340 or 220 ohms or so. Just wire them up on the work bench and see what value makes them read full scale and then shop for a sender that is close.
     
  23. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 4,435

    BamaMav
    Member
    from Berry, AL

    Isn't Dolphin part of the Hoffman Group? If so, that explains it. If not, I'm mistaking them for somebody else.
     
  24. 40fordtudor
    Joined: Jan 3, 2010
    Posts: 2,503

    40fordtudor
    Member

    I have VDO gauges and an Autometer tach---have had good luck with all of them (at least none of them have quit yet.)
     
  25. johnold1938
    Joined: Apr 19, 2009
    Posts: 385

    johnold1938
    Member
    from indiana

    beware the oil sender when it gets hot the rice clogs the passage and your oil pressure drops 50% they are crap and I want the hot rod world to boycott them!!! they got the money out of my wallet for the last time . AND THEY ARE NOT CUSTOMER FRIENDLY SO GOODBY!!
     
  26. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    I'm right there on the not customer friendly part. I emailed them and the two responses I received were rather on the "take it or leave it" side.

    Trust me, if it were in the budget right now they'd be history. I have to live with them for now. The only thing worse than the gauges it what they're mounted in. I LOATHE the ugly ass bi**et panel. It was in the car too when purchased. The PO hacked the dash underneath and I couldn't find anything that would fit. One of my future projects is to cast a new ribbed panel.
     
  27. Katuna
    Joined: Feb 25, 2005
    Posts: 1,812

    Katuna
    Member
    from Clovis,Ca.

    ImageUploadedByH.A.M.B.1436220409.828460.jpg

    The scene of the crime. Friends, don't let friends drive billet. The only saving grace is it made me look into casting my own parts, which I'm pretty stoked about. I have much bigger fish to fry in the mean time. It gives my a cold shiver every time I look at it.
     
  28. Blownfuel
    Joined: Jun 16, 2005
    Posts: 1,269

    Blownfuel
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Billet is just a brushed aluminum piece waiting for a scotch brite pad! ;-)


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  29. 28TudorAZ
    Joined: Dec 29, 2016
    Posts: 114

    28TudorAZ

    Just powdercoat it black like I did.
    20161226_135459.jpg
     
  30. 28TudorAZ
    Joined: Dec 29, 2016
    Posts: 114

    28TudorAZ

    I am trying to figure out if my fan switch is wrong or my temp gauge is wrong. Since they are both new I do not know which one is wrong. I am using the ford temp sending unit and cannot find an adapter to use theirs. I also bought the EZ wiring kit which is installed and I could not be happier.
     

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