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Discussion Starter #1
X500 with a faulty hour meter. After all I have read about X500 hour meters, I'm not even going to try to fix it. Looking for an aftermarket hour meter that does not use a battery, has screw holes in front, and mounts flush instead of protruding out the back. Does such an animal exist? Someone recommended a Hobbs meter, but I can't find one that meets these criteria. Thanks in advance.
 

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I’ve found replacing the hourmeter isn’t that bad.
 

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I’ve found replacing the hourmeter isn’t that bad.
That's true... **IF** the problem is the actual hour meter assy. The problem is JD used a weird setup with the X500 hour meter. For it to work it takes pulses from the ignition coil and runs them through the interlock module. There is another thread where someone had a faulty X500 hour meter. They replaced it and still had the problem. Then they replaced the interlock module and still had the problem. The problem didn't go away until they replaced both ignition coils. To make matters worse, it passed the tests outlined in the Technical Manual.

So unless you get lucky you can quickly get several hundred dollars in an attempted hour meter fix.
 

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How about a "Tiny Tach"?
I second the Tiny Tach recommendation. Most of these tiny hour meters / tachometers are surface mount and can be attached with screws or velcro. In addition to any mounting screws, for most you also have to drill a small hole for the sense wire to pass through.

If I was installing one on my X500 I would drill the tiny hole for the sense wire and then just velcro it either right over top the existing hour meter window or directly below it.

The battery on the Tiny Tachs are rated for 5 years. There are some similar units that take a small coin battery. The nice thing about some of these is they don't lose the hours when you change batteries. I have a "Runleader" brand unit on an old Ariens that reads hours and RPM and it does not lose the data when you change batteries.
 

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But beware if you elect to go the "Tiny-Tach" route. "Tiny-Tach" is a made in the USA device and a specific brand. There are a lot of "made in China" clones that are 1/2 the price but a lot more difficult to work with. They all work, but I'll pay the price for the "Tiny-Tach" brand every day before I'll buy the clones.
 

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But beware if you elect to go the "Tiny-Tach" route. "Tiny-Tach" is a made in the USA device and a specific brand. There are a lot of "made in China" clones that are 1/2 the price but a lot more difficult to work with. They all work, but I'll pay the price for the "Tiny-Tach" brand every day before I'll buy the clones.
What do you mean by "a lot more difficult to work with"? You screw/velco the head unit in place, run the single cord to, and wrap it around, the spark plug wire. And the knockoffs are WAY less, TT still wants $50US/each, the knockoffs are around $10... TT may be better, but it's not 5X better.
 

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I've used the tiny tach before but it is kinda hard to see and you can't replace the battery. Here's what I use now and I've been very impressed. Easy to read, battery can be changed, Max rpm setting that'll flash when you hit it, service interval can be set as well. Comes with zip ties, battery, and heavy duty hook and loop fastener.

https://www.amazon.com/OZ-USA-tachometer-motorcycle-dirtbike-mototcycle/dp/B00RBMN5CA
 

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The Hobbs brand seems to have been around a LONG time. At about 40 to 50 bucks seems like it would be a no brainer to install. As an X500 owner, I keep eyeing my condensation filled meter. At some point I guess it will no longer evaporate and will likely fail. I plan to install a Hobbs meter at that point or before and start adding the new hours to old.

Is Hobbs a pain to install or work with? It wouldn't seem to be that difficult. Would appreciate any Hobbs experience.
 

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The Hobbs brand seems to have been around a LONG time. At about 40 to 50 bucks seems like it would be a no brainer to install. As an X500 owner, I keep eyeing my condensation filled meter. At some point I guess it will no longer evaporate and will likely fail. I plan to install a Hobbs meter at that point or before and start adding the new hours to old.

Is Hobbs a pain to install or work with? It wouldn't seem to be that difficult. Would appreciate any Hobbs experience.
There is nothing really magical about a Hobbs hour meter. They are a good quality electro-mechanical hour meter but they are certainly not immune to failure. But - the issue I see is they usually require a rather large hole for mounting and they stick out the back. They also usually require 12 volts to operate. I had one on an older 175 Hydro and one weakness that became apparent is if you leave the key turned on accidentally the meter will sit there and rack up hours - which ours did.

Quite frankly you just can't beat the little surface mount units that are triggered from the spark plug wire.
 

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These work fine...tach and hours
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Hour-Meter-Tachometer-Small-Engine-Spark-For-Motorcycle-Boat-Bike-Bicycle-DIS/303349361142?hash=item46a107e9f6:g:Vq0AAOSwDNdV0-VE
and very easy to install....use some self tapping screws or silicone to attach it to the dash and then run the wire to the spark plug wire and wrap it around about 3 or 4 times...and it works ...waterproof...and you can reset them..and if you leave the key on, it does not rack up hours.....I use them on tractors I intend to sell....but I like the round mechanical ones for my own tractors....but they do not have tach
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I second the Tiny Tach recommendation. Most of these tiny hour meters / tachometers are surface mount and can be attached with screws or velcro. In addition to any mounting screws, for most you also have to drill a small hole for the sense wire to pass through.

If I was installing one on my X500 I would drill the tiny hole for the sense wire and then just velcro it either right over top the existing hour meter window or directly below it.

The battery on the Tiny Tachs are rated for 5 years. There are some similar units that take a small coin battery. The nice thing about some of these is they don't lose the hours when you change batteries. I have a "Runleader" brand unit on an old Ariens that reads hours and RPM and it does not lose the data when you change batteries.
Bingo. You, sir, are a wealth of info. Thanks. Just bought one on Ebay with a replaceable coin battery and battery life indicator. Thanks to everyone for the replies. Full steam ahead.
 
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