Repair and Maintenance

Dash Upgrade – Part 1

The “Reef Reeler’s” new heart install is just a few weeks away so it’s time to bust a move on the other necessary upgrades. The current 1999 dash cluster is very simple with easy workflow, however, it is all analog and the plastic surrounds on the fuse holders are deteriorating. Since we are going to install a Evinrude ICON 3.5 digital gauge cluster, the current gauge configuration needs revised.

Image 1 shows the current dash which houses a tach, fuel level, volt meter, hour meter, hook for the CB mic and toggle switches for lights, bow and aft bilge and two unused auxiliary. The new ICON 3.5 will be the sole gauge located approximately where the tach currently resides. The AM/FM/Digital radio will fit well where the current 2″ gauges are located.

The ICON 3.5 is the base level digital gauge “Touch” series that complements the new G2 line of outboard motors. This gauge will monitor engine performance as well as provide vessel and engine instrumentation. Aside from real-time monitoring, this gauge also captures trip logs to view distance, performance, speed over the course of your adventure. Evinrude offers two larger, full touch screen gauges which include more functions for multi-motor, multi-fuel tank, vessels.

Since the wiring for the toggles and fuse holders are in great shape, I’m going to keep their locations identical so ease on wire-rework. For the new dash bezel, I’m using 14ga brushed stainless steel which is always fun on drill bits due to it’s hardness. The holes for the fuses and toggles are 1/2″, the ICON gauge requires a 3-3/8″ hole and then the radio will be the standard single unit square. The perimeter holes for fastening to the helm will remain at the same location. One thing to mention, I’m laying out and drilling from the backside forward so to not cause any blemishes on the brushed surface which has a adhesive laminate cover on it for protection during fabrication.

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