Two questions here...
Do you think the 3-gauge cluster is compatible between earlier ('98-'01) and 'middle' ('02-'03) 156s?
Explanation: I have a problem with my fuel gauge - always reads maximum - I disconnected the sender and it still read maximum - I have since reconnected the sender and I thought I would try a different 3-gauge centre cluster. Got hold of one from a wrecked 156 and plugged it in. Lots of observations:
- Lights up in green instead of red (dated 06/2000 rather than 04/2003)
- On key-on, low fuel warning light flashes dim-bright during test cycle, then the light flashes, then the light stays on and the gauge reads 0
- At the same time, Infocentre warns of excessive coolant temperature, just as it does if the cluster is unplugged!
Does anyone have a 156 with the three centre gauges in the dashboard, and the central gauge NOT a clock? E.g. is there an oil pressure gauge or a voltmeter in the middle position? And if yes, what version is your 156, please?
Explanation: I figured out the part number for the correct cluster using ePer - price is over 120 pounds - I see there are other versions too (my car is an M11, there are versions for various others, e.g. M27 and M30) and they are all the same price. I see on the back of my cluster(s) that the film-with-copper-tracks has the provisions for a centre gauge (four holes for threaded posts, like the temperature gauge has three of). The provisions are not used for the weird and hopelessly-unreadable clock, so I guess they must be for another gauge.
If I'm going to spend 120+ pounds, I'd love to get rid of the analogue clock (the only other car I've ever had with an analogue clock was an Austin Princess, it's just daft when FIAT/Alfa have had digital clocks since the late 70s, through the 80s, and into the 90s). Also the 156 is short of dials. I miss the instrumentation of my 164 (the oil pressure/voltmeter) and the Thema (the oil pressure and oil temperature gauges, like my Uno Turbo.) Oil pressure and temperature is useful to know, since pressure drops with temperature and if excessively so, you can choose different oil. Also, high oil temperature can be a good clue that the oil level is low. Voltmeter is useful for diagnosing intermittent electrical faults (not that Alfas ever have those of course
The wiring for the additional gauge does not worry me, I'm sure I can work something out. I'd just like to know if they exist, first.