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Old 08-14-2015, 10:01 AM   #1
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Smile Old RV new Digital Gauge Dash Conversion??

Hi,
Have a 99 Holiday Rambler Endeavor with the Cummins Freightliner chassis /diesel. It has the J1708 connector and data bus on it under the dash. Freightliner tells me that everything should be broadcast on this bus.

Engine info
Trans Info
ABS brake info

My question is ....has anyone done or looked at replacing the old gauge cluster with a newer digital dash that gets info from the data bus?

Been looking at VMSpc and some other packages that appear to get you there. There are also some digital gauge clusters out there that essentially use a flat panel display to present gauges.

Looking for someone that has done this or knows more about doing it to understand if it can be done and what are the issues. What is on the bus and what is not?

Thanks in advance...Randy
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Old 08-14-2015, 10:53 AM   #2
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Get the VMSpc and run it on a 15" laptop. Sit it on the dash angled to the driver.
Then never need to look down at the dash gauges.

Has worked for me over the last 12 plus years.
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Old 08-14-2015, 02:47 PM   #3
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ABS data with VMSpc?

Great. Do you know if it includes ABS brake info?

Can you make analog gauges on the PC screen using VMSpc?

Anyone else have experience with this or others?

Thanks again.
Randy
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Old 08-14-2015, 03:03 PM   #4
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I use VMSPC also. Not long ago I got a STOP ENGINE, looked at my VMSPC screen and one glance I knew it was Engine batteries LOW, Alternator dead. I ran generator until home and replaced alternator... Just wish someone would design a fancier looking screen that might look a little more like a Dashboard. Think I would pay for that...
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Old 08-14-2015, 03:43 PM   #5
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Silverleaf makes a complete "Glass Dash" for motohomes with displays that mimic standard gauges.
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Old 08-14-2015, 09:10 PM   #6
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A windows based tablet also makes a good display for the VMSpc, and eliminates the space required for the keyboard. Mine runs on a windows 2000 op system on a fujitsu tablet.
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Old 08-14-2015, 09:13 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Selah View Post
Silverleaf makes a complete "Glass Dash" for motohomes with displays that mimic standard gauges.
Yea, have you seen the price?
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Old 08-15-2015, 06:24 AM   #8
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Thanks everyone. I have seen the glass dash and it looks nice. are those type of digital gauges available via vmspc on the pc or tablet screen?
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Old 08-15-2015, 07:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rorkis View Post
Great. Do you know if it includes ABS brake info?

Can you make analog gauges on the PC screen using VMSpc?
No ABS brake info. But in all the years of having mine. The dash ABS light has only came on one time. And that was this last spring when the generator regulator was going bad. And the VMSpc showed spikes of 15.4 to 16 + volts at times.

No analog gauges either.
You can download the FREE PC software and play with it to see how you can arrange different ones to what you want.

The hardware $$$ is what makes it all work.
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Old 08-16-2015, 02:08 PM   #10
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You could use a ScanGaugeD and customize it to the main gauges you want to monitor. It will give you all the info plus a bunch you don't need for less than $200. I love mine and pay more attention to it than my gauges.
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Old 08-20-2015, 09:17 AM   #11
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digital dash

Thanks for all the info. looks like there are 3 options
1..VMSpc but does not support nice analog type gauges $400 plus laptop or tablet
2. scan gauge D - small screen but good data $159 lots of readings
3. glass dash - very costly and custom. Really nice analog gauges on flat panel display. Costly greater than $5k

Would be really nice if you could write custom analog gauges with VMSpc. that would be a really good balance between 1 and 3.

ANY OTHER OPTIONS??
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Old 08-20-2015, 02:47 PM   #12
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ScanGaugeD can easily be customized and the cost is reasonable.
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:06 PM   #13
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I got the ScanGuage D on Amazon for $139.95 with free shipping!
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Old 08-21-2015, 11:02 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rorkis View Post
Would be really nice if you could write custom analog gauges with VMSpc. that would be a really good balance between 1 and 3.
VMSpc does provide a "back door" for custom integration, but you will have to do some serious programming, or find someone to do it for you. Basically, it setups a shared memory region where it stores the current real-time data that it has collected. You then write an application that connects to this shared memory region, and you can access the latest raw data for each PID, the count of messages received for each PID, and the converted/scaled value for each PID.

There used to be instructions posted on the Silverleaf site, but they are no longer there. I have a saved copy, which is attached. I started to play with it a few years ago, but then got busy with other things and never got back to it. I can't say for sure if it is still supported in the current versions of VMSpc, but I don't see a reason why they would remove it from the application.

With VMSpc running in the background updating the shared memory, a skilled programmer should be able to connect to that shared memory, access the real time data, and develop any kind of graphical front end to display the data.

That's something that I could write, but at my hourly consulting rates, it would be much cheaper to go with the Glass Dash from SilverLeaf, as they have already developed 99% of the code and would only need to customize the layout for your needs.
Attached Files
File Type: txt Shared Memory Instructions.txt (2.3 KB, 46 views)
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