The blueShift Custom Tachometer

3D Printing & Imaging Arduino Cars Technology


Not satisfied with the stock tachometer on your car? You could buy an aftermarket kit, but for something truly unique, Pete Mills decided to design and build his own. He calls his creation “blueShift,” which, although possibly optimistic about the speed he will be able to achieve in his Ford Fiesta, is, nonetheless, incredibly cool.

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After making a much less finished prototype seen in the slideshow above, the housing of this external tachometer was made with a 3D printer purchased specifically for this project. The LEDs are from an interesting addressable ring that could be of interest for many projects, and it’s powered with an Arduino Mini using a Bluetooth module.

As cool as those components are, I was really interested in the OpenXC interface system used to power this ‘tach. This system is a small piece of hardware developed by Ford that plugs into a vehicle’s diagnostic port, and allows one to read statistics from your car on an Android device. It’s described as an “API to your car,” and I’m excited to see what other cool creations people come up with using this technology.

As for the “blueShift” tachometer, check out the video below to see an explanation, or skip ahead to around 8:00 to see it in action!

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Jeremy is an engineer with 10 years experience at his full-time profession, and has a BSME from Clemson University. Outside of work he’s an avid maker and experimenter, building anything that comes into his mind!

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