I've been mucking about with a set of MX5 MkI gauges. The speedo is cable driven and it is straightforward to mate it to a Triumph gearbox. By chance, it is calibrated perfectly with 14" wheels for a 0-120mph sweep.
The oil pressure is a simple VDO sender, the tacho is a single wire (MkI MX5s have a single coil pack) and I can calibrate the fuel gauge easily using the Spitfire sender.
I've mocked-up some period gauge faces and I have some thinner needles (I'll post pics after a few more iterations). I am pleased with the potential.
I need to decide whether to make a period front (making the gauges look like conventional individual gauges) and keep the gauges in the same layout, or to unscrew the mechanicals of each gauge and produce a totally new layout. I have glass and chrome bezels that I can use.
The reasons for doing all this are -
1) Freedom to produce what I am looking for
2) Very cost effective (binnacle cost £20)
3) I'm a masochist
I may well bin the lot and go for conventional gauges, but this has been a bit of fun.
I have a complete set of Jaegar gauges. I enquired about having them refaced (which involves painting) and it was about £90 per gauge(!!). I want a cream or magnolia face with the numerals in the same colour as the body and in a period font.
Yes, I know I should be worrying about bigger things like returning to a rolling chassis, but if I didn't play around with things like this in the evenings I would be watching Police Interceptors or Dogs in Uniform.
Years ago I saw a 50s race car with the fuel gauge facing forward, mounted in the bulkhead between the two seats. It looked rather good............