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This write-up is for the Nissan Sentra XE. 2door or 4door.

I did quite a bit of searching, only write-up I could fine consisted of the cluster swap, not really an individual aftermarket tach install. There were some "help me!" posts, but here's the answer. :)

Suggested tools:
Electrical Tape
Phillips Screw Driver
Drill (Sorry, don't know what size bits you need off hand)
Wire splicer (I used a pocket knife)

Before you get started with mounting the tach onto the car, you need you remove the passenger side's kick panel. This is located on the floor board, by your feet, on the side of the center console. It's held in by a metal screw, and a plastic screw. Once removed, you have some working room to access the ECU.

Ensure you have your car turned off, and the negative battery wire removed. Safety first, just in case. ;)

The ECU, has quite a bit of wires coming out of the front with a plastic shield protecting the plug-in. It's a silver box, hard to miss.

Remove the plastic shield. You'll notice a bundle of wires wrapped by a protective sheath, made of cheap plastic. Simply expose the wires a little, and dig around looking for a Blue/White stripe wire. Once located, strip the wire. I didn't bother cutting the wire at the ecu, I just "hijacked" it. This wire is the tach signal (you didn't even have to go for the ignition coil!), that was intended for the SE-R, but was left in by Nissan for the XE.

Next, we'll get the power source, dim, and ground.

Remove the center console's cover, the same one that surrounds the cd player, up front center. I believe there's 6 screws to this, doesn't take long. Once unscrewed, you have to remove the shifter boot on the bottom, and pop it out. Careful, the Defroster, and Hazard lights are plugged into this! Just located the plug in the back, and remove, easy to do.

Now, for the power/ground/dimmer, we need to use the rear defroster. Don't worry! The rear defroster will still work after this!

The plug that went into the rear defroster button, consists of 3 wires we'll be "hijacking", the yellow wire (power), black wire (ground), and the red/blue stripe wire (dimmer). Strip each wire for the install.

Now, mount the tach where you'd like, and run the wires (I put the tach's wires behing the center console to hide, and it looked nice. :)), to the sources. The green wire (common, tach signal wire), goes to the ecu blue/white stripe wire. Wrap the wire into the one you striped, and wrap in electrical tape. The red wire (common, power wire), goes to the yellow wire from the defroster. Wrap the wire to the yellow wire, and cover. Black of course, goes to the grounding wire, which is thankfully... black! The White (dimmer wire), goes to the red/blue stripe wire. After everything is covered in electrical tape... reconnect negative battery wire, and turn the key!

I think I have everything included!
 

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Excellent. I ran my tach signal wire to the coil, but kinda wish I had done it your way. I wouldn't have had to drill through my firewall that way or have the extra wires in the engine bay.

Just in case somebody reads this and wants to go to the coil for some reason, there's a green wire with a yellow stripe coming off of the coil that you would splice into for the tach signal wire. You can use any ground, and I powered my tach off of the accessory wire on my ignition switch. Either way works.

I would suggest picking up a package of "quick-splice connectors" from radio shack or any automotive store and using them instead of having to splice in by hand. All you have to do is insert the two wires and use a pair of pliers to clamp down this little piece of metal that jumpers the wries together. Easier than splicing by hand, leaves less room for error, and insulates them while you're at it.
 

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87 sentra tach install

I'm in need of help with my 87 sentra, last night I bought an aftermarket tach and its all hooked up except for the signal wire, can anybody help with where this attaches.
Toby
 

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Discussion Starter #6
toby said:
I'm in need of help with my 87 sentra, last night I bought an aftermarket tach and its all hooked up except for the signal wire, can anybody help with where this attaches.
Toby
I've never played with that year's chassis, so I can't even begin to help you. However, I searched a little, and looks like it has to wire to the ignition, no tricks like I wrote about.

Check your other post: http://www.nissanforums.com/showthread.php?t=58721

Looks like those guys might be able to help you. :) Good luck.
 

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What tach do you guys recommend? There are plenty of cheesy looking ones out there - and just as many that cost far too much. I still find it rather strange that the only B13 Sentra to be equipped with a tachometer was the GXE automatic trim level. Not that it is entirely necessary in a manual, it's just nice to have one. With instructions as simple as this, I think I have a new project this weekend...thanks.
 

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Well, I knew about the SE-R, but I consider it on a different level than the other 1.6L Sentras. But I completely forgot about the SE - I think I've only seen one ever...was it a 1.6L? Just wondering.
 

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Very nice, It's nice to see other people take the time to do this stuff and do it right. I shake my head when I hear people are hacking into the coil wiring to get a signal and drilling holes in their firewalls. When I put a tach in my '93 XE I used the blue/white wire also, which worked fine, but the actual tach wire used for the OEM tach is the blue/black wire at ECU terminal #2. It's also found in a harness behind the HVAC controls. I also tapped into the dimmer wires at the dimmer switch, it's closer to the gauge cluster and easier to remove and fish wires to than the hazard switch. It seems as though most tachs don't have a seperate power feed or ground for the backlight though, so using the dimmer probably won't work on a lot of aftermarket tachs. In the XE I used a cheap Equus (sp?) 2" tach I bought from JC Whitney for about $20, because to me, nothing would have been cheasier than to have a noticeable tach in an XE. And I used double sided tape to hold it onto the steering column on the topside. That didn't hold up too well in the summer heat but I wasn't going to drill holes or do anything permanent to mount the thing.
 

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Your electrical friend
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I don't like those type splice connectors myself, I prefer this style:

 

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Discussion Starter #14
myoung said:
Blue/orange on B14's: http://www.nissanperformancemag.com/may03/tach/


I installed it for easy removal.. didn't want it there all the time ;)...cheesy

and don't hack it.. or whatever the comment was...use a slice connector, they are cheap.. http://www.nissanperformancemag.com/may03/tach/images/dscf2341.jpg
Exactly, I was on low-budget plan doing this. ;)

I also mounted the tach to the steering collumn, but I used drills, because the owner said it'd be permanent. :) It looks nice where it is, considering the size of it: 2" and something. :)
 

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I know another way

you can simply slice into the green wire with yellow stipe and that is your tach wire. it is located right by the distributor.
 

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the_new_kid said:
you can simply slice into the green wire with yellow stipe and that is your tach wire. it is located right by the distributor.

:thumbdwn: Or you could do it the correct way. Please see my post above, #10.
 

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toolapcfan said:
:thumbdwn: Or you could do it the correct way. Please see my post above, #10.
I agree why go to all the trouble of going through the firewall and having extra wires in the engine bay? Just tie into the wire in the ecu cluster... no mess, no fuss.. can be done in a few minutes.
 

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blade said:
I have a 2000 Sentra XE 4-door and i need help on how to install a Tach on my car.

My Tach: http://www.itsrealstuff.com/13-720.jpg
4” TACHOMETER CARBON FIBER ADJUSTABLE SHIFT LIGHT AT 10,000 rpm
Someone please help. Thanks
Your tach wire is the Blue/Orange wire the ECU pin #32.

Go to www.phatg20.com and register a username, then verify it. Then go to the FSM's and download the FSM for your car. Then go to the EL section, page 94. You'll see the diagram for the cluster that has a tach and it shows you that terminal 32 at the ECU is blue/orange, and below that it shows the ECU pin out so you can find the wire. The rest should be easy.
 
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