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  • Instrument Cluster Question(s)

    I am running the US S52 cluster in my car now. I ran the extra wire (required on the compact) to make the MPG gage operational. If it's there, I want it to work, as silly as it is.

    I recently came across a UK S50B32 cluster, which has the same overall look as the US cluster (MPH dominant with KPH inner track) and of course the far more useful oil temp gage in place of the MPG gage.

    Before I dump a bunch of money on this thing, is it possible to use this cluster with my DME/harness, and of course, how do I get the oil temp gage working? Would my coding plug work at all in this cluster, or brick the thing?

    I already have the S54 oil filter housing, awaiting installation as I collect the remaining oil cooler parts. So mounting the sender is the easy part. Do I simply send the sender signal to the pin currently being used for the MPG gage? Will this cluster even operate on my US harness and DME? If changes need to be made, I'll change the engine harness configuration, as I hope to someday put an S50B32 in this car. Of course that may never happen too... So, can this be done?

    I don't have Euro ETMs, so if any of you guys do have those, I can figure the wiring out myself. But currently I only have the US/CAN ETMs in my stash.

  • #2
    There is only one type of coding plug, so if it has one (should have) it will work. BUT, the higher of the two will be your mileage when you sync the two (to remove the tamper dot). You can’t transfer a lower mileage coding key to the internal eeprom.

    To get the oil temp gauge working you just need to add the sensor and run one wire to the cluster. Pin 13 of connector X16.
    I don’t know if the S52 oil filter housing has provision for the sensor. ETK will probably show this. If not you will need the EU S50 housing, or get an oilfilter house cap with provision for a temp sensor.

    And of course the EU cluster will not show correct redline, for whatever this matters.​

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    • #3
      Pin 21 (on the tan connector- not sure which that is but probably X16) is the signal for the MPG gage, which comes from Pin 24 on X20.

      S52 does not have an oil temp sender provision. Some put a tee on the pressure sender port, but I have an S54 housing which does support the temp sender, along with the oil pressure sender and cooler lines.

      Maybe some S52 (specifically: Roadster) filter housings have the second bung, but I have a roadster engine and don't recall any "unused" sensors on the engine... I should take another look, and save on a sensor.

      From my book, TMU dot:

      Test 9 Distance reading - this allows the total stored mileage to be updated if one of the storage components has to be replaced. This test step will be used if the manipulation dot is illuminated in the cluster display. This display will show the component with the lower mileage. For example: Display of 012654 l indicates that the mileage in the internal EEPROM is lower than the mileage stored in the coding plug. Display of 000325 E indicates that the mileage in external coding plug is lower than the total mileage stored in the internal EEPROM. Pressing the reset button for 4 seconds will over write the lower mileage with the higher mileage and cancel the manipulation dot. The SI data will also be transferred at the same time. (You have to be within the cluster test functions to reset this)

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      • #4
        So you already knew.

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        • #5
          I did not know about the oil temp, and I didn't know the cluster was "plug n play" compatible with the US spec car. But it seems I do know now. I have a procedure to "adjust" cylinder number (4-6-8) to correct RPM display as well. Part of those same test functions I think.

          The TMU dot, I knew about, if that's what you're referring to.

          In my case, I have a (well, not any more) NOS cluster, with another coding plug in it from a used cluster, mated to a different DME... The dealer was unable to code the new cluster in the car with the blank coding plug in it. I'm apparently missing a few wires between DME and cluster, but nothing that affects drivability or emissions. And actually the DME I now have is different from the one that was in the car when they tried. That one is from the original Roadster the engine came from, which had the SAP written out by Nick G. We learned later that Nick is the only one on earth (Dinan doesn't even do this) that LOCKS the DME if they mess with it. I had to get another DME, clone the DInan software into it as a base tune, and then let the tuner do a few other tweaks that he could not do to the locked DME.

          Bottom line: don't use Nick if you think you'll ever need to go back into your DME again. Yes, he will unlock it for you... for an additional fee. Maybe if he had disclosed this up front, it would have altered my decision to use his services.

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          • #6
            Coding the cluster to whatever you need is easy (for me).

            Bypassing Nick’s lock is also easy with the correct software. Something I can also do.

            MSportParts | Braymond141

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            • #7
              I'm not aware of any relation (coding) between cluster and DME. Aligning DME with EWS, sure, but not that.

              With NCS Expert you can code the cluster. If you want VIN/mileage programmed, Braymond is your guy. I currently don't have any hardware to write the eeprom.

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              • #8
                Here's an idea of how the cluster's/coding key eeprom programming works.

                I don't know if the internal eeprom needs desoldering or it can be programmed in situ with one of those testclips. Again, Braymond will know.


                https://mcmillan.website/bmw-e36-z3-cluster-eeproms/

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