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I have Crazy Speedometer Syndrome

Discussion in '1973-1991 K5 Blazer | Truck | Suburban' started by TopOff, Nov 19, 2002.

  1. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Hello, My name is Nick....

    [HI Nick..]

    I have Crazy Speedometer Syndrome (CSS).

    I installed a new speedometer cable in my '73 Blazer. When I am going ~30 + MPH my speedometer (area) makes a HORRIBLE whirring / whizzing noise. Additionally the speed fluctuates from 70 - 90 MPH.

    I tried lubing the speedometer cable with dry graphite with little success. It seems to make this noise only when going above 35 MPH and for the first 5 - 10 miles. After that the whirring goes away and the correct speed is displayed.

    I have also tried to straighten the cable but this seems impossible due to packaging of the cable.

    I have had the cable in the truck now for two weeks.

    Could the speedometer itself be all gummed up and causing the cable to bind?

    I hope no one else experiences CSS in their /forums/images/graemlins/k5.gif or /forums/images/graemlins/burb.gif or /forums/images/graemlins/truck.gif

    /forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif
     
  2. azblazor

    azblazor 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Had this problem in a 77 - it was the cruise control - the mech device between the cable from the transfer case and the cable to the speedometer. I replaced it a couple of times trying to keep the cruise control - finally just had a cable made with the correct ends to bypass it.
     
  3. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for the reply That's interesting.
    I don't have cruise control (that I know of).

    It was working before... sort of. The cable was really close to the exhaust. The cable broke it strands and began twisting onto itself and finally broke.

    All I did was get a new cable. Now I got CSS.

    Thanks.
     
  4. azblazor

    azblazor 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    Well I got CRS so don't feel too bad.
     
  5. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    First off, dry graphite is not a good lubricant. Its abrasive actually.

    However, the whirring noise is likely the speedometer itself. When the cable is bad usually the speedo will "jump" randomly, as the cable "winds up" and lets go.

    I've had CSS before in my current speedo, and it read about 80 @45mph. Luckily it hasn't returned, but if it does, I'm going to a 90'ish electric speedo.
     
  6. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Huh???
     
  7. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    OK great, no more graphite. - thanks.

    Is there a way to fix the speedometer?
    Take it apart and clean it or something?

    I am pretty sure this speedo was working fine before the cable broke though. /forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif
    I really don;t recall, as it's been about two years for the speedo to work. /forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif
     
  8. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Really don't think there is a way to "fix" the speedo that is worthwhile. You can buy them all day long for a couple of dollars. You might try something like those small cans of compressed air for computers around the mechanism, but I have a feeling short of a speedo repair shop or a lot of trial and error on your part, they are fairly non-repairable.

    I have a knowledgable friend that swears by a product called cable-eze. (or some ridiculously spelled variant of that)
     
  9. azblazor

    azblazor 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    </font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
    Huh???

    [/ QUOTE ]
    CRS = Can't Remember Stuff
     
  10. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Alright - thanks for the info.

    Where does one find good working speedos for a couple of bucks?

    I would be afraid I would just have the same problem if I tried to get one from a pick-n-pull J-yard.

    Maybe one of those fancier J-yards, where I just say what I need and they miraculously make the item appear for two or three times the going price at a pick-n-pull?

    Thanks
    Nick
     
  11. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Is there any recommended item to use to lube the speedo or the cable?

    Thanks
     
  12. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    Any clusters I have bought lately are from local people, just parting the trucks out. Idiot lights are quite rare really, so the clusters typically aren't taken. Even in the 'yards, a lot of time people only pull one or two instruments, leaving the others, which means you should be able to buy what you need as the "assembly" is no more.

    Again, recommended lube was "cable-eze" or something spelled like that : ) Try your local chain auto store and see what they have. It's probably moly grease or something anyways.
     
  13. TopOff

    TopOff 1/2 ton status

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    Kewl.

    Thanks for the info.

    I am off to the yards!
     
  14. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

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    If going to the 'yard, I'd ask if they will let you swap it out if it does not work right. Never hurts to ask,although they may laugh at you. Most parts they WILL guarantee for about 30 days though.
     
  15. BigOrange90Jimmy

    BigOrange90Jimmy 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    just adding a little to dyeager535's post. if you can't find the lube that you're looking for there, you might want to try a bicycle shop. they sell stuff to lube brake and shifter cables. i'm pretty sure this stuff will work just as well, if not better.
     
  16. bryguy00b

    bryguy00b 3/4 ton status

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    my dads 79 chevy does that to..a really loud winding noise..but goes away after a while...only does it after its been sitting a day in cold weather or longer.
     
  17. Tweetysuarus

    Tweetysuarus 1/2 ton status

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    Take the speedo head to Sacramento Speedometer Shop next to DMV in West Sac off Harbor.
    Bill
     
  18. Chris_T

    Chris_T 1/2 ton status

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    I had CSS in my '72.. a somewhat radical change fixed mine and I can't explain it. Changing from 3.73's to 4.56s fixed my CSS .. I expected it to get worse, but strangely enough it came right back to where it was supposed to be as far as speed was concerned and the needle stopped waving. Mine used to sweep from roughly 10 o'clock to 2 o'clock on the guage in between 40 and 60 mph (on the guage). I just decided to pick the value in the middle.

    Now ... I wonder if I put a Dana 60 in there if it'll fix my radio reception?
     
  19. jjlaughner

    jjlaughner 3/4 ton status

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    I used 10w30 (valvoline) /forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
    Hold the cable up and with a rag in your hand and dump a little in (tablespoons worth), wait a sec, twist the cable around (like a jumprope), and repete (a couple times), reconnect and go drive it for a little while, it will calm down as it works through. About every 3 years I do this, it gets worse with cold weather (no fix for that yet). Maybe I should move to AZ!
     
  20. R72K5

    R72K5 Banned

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    moving to AZ would be good move, would be harder on interior and weatherstripping and dashpad, but still.,.,.,
     

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