Help! newb with 81 Town car w/ issues

Lincoln Town Car

  1. cdb

    cdb LVC Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Norwalk CT
    Hi,
    I picked up an 81 Town Car Friday . 53K orig miles 302 FI with AOD trans, really clean but here now the problems :Bang : Digital speedo and driver info center not working. Speedo reads zero MPH (lights up) but does not read as car moves and speedo cable is good (odo is working). Second problem, car wont shift out of first gear, wondering if it runs off of a VSS in speedo?
    BTW, shop manuals are on their way but not here yet- Ebay. Any input will be appreciated. I like the car and hope not too deep to fix. Thanks, Craig
     
  2. 78_TownCar_460

    78_TownCar_460 LVC Member

    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Renton
    Was it like this when you bought it?
     
  3. cdb

    cdb LVC Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Norwalk CT
    OK first need to update since I could not find the edit tab from my first post.
    Transmission is ok, throttle linkage arm had popped off- fixed. The speedo lights up but does not register,bought that way, driver info was intermittent now has gone away agian, fuel gauge works. Car was only $200 , took the chance on it. I does run perfect, but I need a speedo, can live without the info center if I have to. Craig
     
  4. 78_TownCar_460

    78_TownCar_460 LVC Member

    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2005
    Location:
    Renton
    I don't know. I don't really like digital dashes. I would look for some sort of sending unit, that has gone amock, otherwise, follow the flow of traffic untill you get the shop manuals and can diagnose the problem.
     
  5. cdb

    cdb LVC Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Norwalk CT
    yup ,I agree. The digital dash was the only thing that turned me off about the car.
     
  6. thamarkman

    thamarkman Well-Known LVC Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Mukilteo
    I love my digital dash. Sorry yours isn't working right. The information center on the right side is bad because of the brain, which is located under the dash. It is easily identifiable because it has a huge wire plug in going to it. Replace that unit and your information center will work fine. As for the speedometer check to make sure that it is connected at the back of the transmission. I don't think that is your problem but its an easy check. I think it might be the unit itself. It may not be registering right, I had a Cadillac once that did the same thing. Maybe someone took the dash out and didn't hook up the cable when they put it back together. Anyways I hope this might help you a little bit.
     
  7. cdb

    cdb LVC Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Norwalk CT
    Thanks for the reply. The speedo cable is good since the odometer is working. It must be the brain for the info center that is NG. I am just wondering if once that brain is NG does that take the speedometer out with it, or are they independent of eachother? Where on earth will I be able to get a new brain for an 81 Lincoln at this point, any ideas, or will I just be risking another used one that is old and ready to die as well ? Could I switch over to an analog speedo by leaving same cluster housing and bolting the analog speedo into the existing housing?
     
  8. thamarkman

    thamarkman Well-Known LVC Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Mukilteo
    The brain for the info center is completely independent of the speedometer. Your best bet for finding one is to go to a junkyard and find one out of an 88' or 89' towncar because they are newer. Its not too bad of a job, I had to do it in my Mark VI, but it just so happened that my friend totalled his 84' Towncar so I just used his. If your speedometer cable is plugged in then about the only thing left is the digital cluster. Since it displays 0 then nothing is wrong with the solid state electronics it would be the actual thing that reads the speedometer cable.
    Have you looked behind it to see that it is plugged in? Maybe for some odd reason someone had to take out the dash and forgot to plug the speedometer cable back in. By the time they realized it they were too lazy too go back and fix it. Just an idea.
     
  9. Joeychgo

    Joeychgo Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,460
    Likes Received:
    654
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2004
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Watch Ebay - you might be able to find one there at some point.
     
  10. cdb

    cdb LVC Member

    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    Location:
    Norwalk CT
    Yes I have been watching ebay for a setup. The cluster is plugged in , I checked that to make sure. So, it sounds like the brain is the same unit for quite a few years of production. I will check the local junkyard this week too. I really like this Linc and want it to work right. Thanks, Craig
     
  11. thamarkman

    thamarkman Well-Known LVC Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Mukilteo
    If you find a junked car with a brain for your infor center go ahead an take the instrument cluster too. Plug it in and see if it works. This sounds like you've done a lot of work on this problem. If it were me I would just go with the flow of traffic and forget the speedometer.
     
  12. gadget73

    gadget73 Active LVC Member

    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2004
    Location:
    New Jersey
    Not sure if or where it would be located on your car, but check for a speed sensor. Usually they're either located right on the transmission where the speedo cable connects or it would be at the dash end of the cable behind the odometer. If that is bad, it wouldnt send a signal for the speedo to read.
     
  13. thamarkman

    thamarkman Well-Known LVC Member

    Messages:
    305
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2004
    Location:
    Mukilteo
    There's no speed sensor, the cable plugs into the tranny and goes to the dash, its all mechanical.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.