The MGA With An Attitude
Dash INSTALLATION Sequence for MGA -- DT-141
  1. Disconnect battery
  2. Remove steering column if in place. Remove one bolt from top end of steering U-joint (just forward of the firewall), and two bolts from the cradle clamps between dash and firewall, and pull the steering column assembly straight back. Do not remove the steering wheel.
  3. Replace any missing or deteriorated rubber grommets in the firewall.
  4. With dash panel on workbench, install all devices in the dash. Tachometer was originally to left of speedometer, and fuel gauge was originally to left of safety gauge. For a left hand drive car is was a common period modification to switch position of all four gauges to place the tachometer next to the safety gauge, especially for a competition car (your choice). Connect all dash harness wires (about 30) to the dash devices. See articles ET-100B and ET-100C. Dash harness connections are at the top of these illustrations. The dash harness may have a few clips to secure it to top edge of dash. Double check color codes for all wire connections.
  5. Place dash in car face down on tunnel. Alternately you may sit in center of car with the dash assembly face down on your knees.
  6. Connect all wires from the main wiring harness to dash, 17 or 18 wires, see articles ET-100B and ET-100C. Main harness connections are at the bottom of these illustrations. Double check color codes for all wire connections.
  7. Lift dash assembly into position and install three screws (with lockwashers and large flat washers) at brackets at dash top edge to secure dash to body cowling.
  8. Install four braces running from bottom edge of dash to heater shelf. If the car has a heater or fresh air system, install the heater control and assembly correct side up and assuring correct order of screws and spacers thin and thick (2 screws, 4 spacers). Connect two snap connectors for blower switch wires.
  9. If the car has a radio, install radio in the dash, and install any bracing bracket between radio cabinet and car body cowl. Connect all electrical wiring for radio including the antenna.
  10. If there is an original style center mounted radio speaker, mount the box assembly with speaker on the under dash braces, and connect the speaker wires.
  11. Install any P-clips or other attachments of cables or harness wires to the car body under dash. Be neat and don't let the wires dangle to avoid vibration disconnect problems or broken wires later.
  12. Push the starter and choke cables through the firewall, being careful not to kink the cables.
  13. Connect starter cable forward end at starter switch.
  14. Connect choke cable forward end at carburetor.
  15. Connect mechanical drive cables to speedometer and tachometer.
  16. Install the the safety gauge (oil pressure and water temperature). Install the rubber O-ring on the gauge, then snake the temperature sensor line through the dash panel without damaging the fluid pipe. Push the gauge into the dash. Install the bracket on back of gauge with one thumb nut (and lock washer) which also connects a black grounding wire to the bracket. Snake the temperature sensor line through the bulkhead without damaging the fluid pipe. See article DT-101. Install any P-clips or brackets that may be secure the signal pipe in engine bay and/or behind the dash. Connect the temperature probe below the thermostat in right side of the cylinder head. Use a flare nut wrench only to avoid damaging the hollow brass flare nut. Refill coolant in engine and radiator. Connect the small oil pipe at back of gauge. Notice there was originally a leather seal washer here, but you may get by without one (if it doesn't leak at 80 psi oil pressure with a snug flare nut). Install the illumination bulb on the gauge bracket.
  17. Install steering column (3 bolts). Assure that the notch in the steering shaft aligns with the bolt position in the U-joint, and the steering wheel will still sit the right side up (if you hadn't remove the steering wheel).
  18. Reconnect battery.
  19. Test everything electrical to assure proper function.
  20. Test drive to verify proper function of gauges.
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