This truck was bought brand new by my grandpa back in '82. He used it as a farm pickup for its whole life. He gave it to me years ago after he dropped a tree on the cab. Finally started working on it, after it had been sitting for at least 10 years. Some parts had been stolen off it in that time too. Apparently mice think a bell housing is a great place for a nest if the starter is gone. Anyway, I replaced all the missing parts after a bit of trial and error, and replaced the belts, filters, fluids etc. Runs very smooth, the 300-6 is very quiet, various small issues keep popping up though.
It has the usual rot for a truck this age, the lower rear quarters, and a bit on one rear wheel arch. The entire bed floor is shot too.
Took a trip to the yard today and picked up a few parts. Rear view mirrors, and a water neck (that broke). Also got some nice headlight bezels, and a tailgate off an '87-'91 to adapt. Was hoping to find a 80-81 grille to swap in, but scored a chrome tubular aftermarket piece, looks almost like a billet grille.
Went to the junkyard today, and picked up some new visors to replace my missing/ripped originals. Also got a relatively intact dash pad that I'm going to restore using Em's method.
Also found a nice instrument cluster that has a tach, trip odometer, and actual voltage/oil pressure gauges. Touched up the needles with a sharpie and it looks good as new.
Sorry for the crap pics.
Also, I got a new thermostat housing at Checker. Despite being a cheap chinese casting, it is cast iron and thicker than the two stockers I managed to break.
I figured there would be some difficulty. What in specific is incompatible? Can I just swap the two gauges for the original idiot lights? All I really wanted out of this was the tach, and the trip odo is a nice bonus.
Like quad says, the sizes of the wiring connectors are different; the one with gauges has (I
think) 4 additional wires in the harness, resulting in a bigger physical plug. Search the
archives, I did what you're wanting to do (about 2-3 years ago, though) but never hooked
up the ammeter, decided instead to replace the entire harness. The wiring for the tach is
pretty easy but you're prolly gonna have questions for which I'm again gonna point you to
the archives (enclosing multiple words in a search term with quotes helps) as this is
commonly discussed out here.
Where are the archives then? I've been looking through all the site links and searching any term related to instrument cluster swaps and I've came up with little more than has already been posted here.
Do an Advanced Search in just this forum, not the entire site. There's a notification on the
page, very similar to what I said: "IMPORTANT: Use quotes around keywords to get
better results. Examples: "fuel pump" ; "fuel pump installation"
This search engine kinda sucks and is nowhere near as user-friendly as google but you can
still get good info out of it by playing' around with date ranges, posts vs threads, etc.