Interior Bits Round 2 – tach and Steering Column Surround

By: Bob Goodson
April 12, 2020
Author: Michael Yount
The previous owner attached an aftermarket tachometer to the steering by using a big stainless band-clamp, old-school style.  This worked fine on my old 55 Chevy which had steel parts trimming the column.  But the plastic column surround of the Bee wasn’t up to the task.  It cracked in a couple of places AND the mounting screws which hold the column surround to the column were M.I.A.  So the tach and surround moved around and rattled.  Additionally, after comparing the tach reading to the shop tach we used when timing the engine we concluded that the tach reading was quite a bit off.  Noticed that while driving too.  Seemed all wound out by 4000 rpm — but sounded like 6500 rpm.
So, took it all apart.  Immediately noticed that the # of cylinders switch on the back of the tach was set to 6 instead of 4.  Every now and then you get an easy fix.

On the plastic surround — JBWeld to the rescue.  Filled up all the cracks and mended one broken piece with JBWeld, slathering plenty of extra on the backside.  Then I made a metal reinforcement plate for the area where the tach bracket would be screwed on.  Again, lots of JBWeld for reinforcement.  I built up the two plastic ‘towers’ that had broken inside the surround – this let me source two screws to attach the surround to the column.  The nuts you see in the picture are just there to guide the screws — the screws thread into bosses on the column after they pass through the nuts.  Last I added some black foam to seal up the end of the surround nearest the dash — again, to keep things from moving around.   It doesn’t look pretty on the inside – but no one (except all ya’ll) sees that.  It’s tight, quiet and doesn’t move around any longer.  Really happy with the result – especially since it’s almost impossible to find replacements.


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