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On Board Computer (OBC) Upgrade / Turn Signal Switch Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

On Board Computer (OBC) Upgrade / Turn Signal Switch Replacement

Time:

4 hrs

Tab:

$300

Talent:

***

Tools:

Torx driver set

Applicable Models:

Porsche 986 Boxster (1997-04)
Porsche 986 Boxster S (2000-04)
Porsche 987 Boxster (2005-12)
Porsche 987 Boxster S (2005-12)

Parts Required:

Turn signal switch + parts

Hot Tip:

Buy the cruise control switch, it's cheaper

Performance Gain:

Activate on board computer, cruise control

Complementary Modification:

996 gauge cluster upgrade, cruise control installation
101 Performance Projects for Your Porsche Boxster

This article is one in a series that have been released in conjunction with Wayne's new book, 101 Performance Projects for Your Porsche Boxster. The book contains 312 pages of full color projects detailing everything from performance mods to changing your brake pads. With more than 950+ full-color glossy photos accompanying extensive step-by-step procedures, this book is required reading in any Boxster owner's collection. The book is currently available and in stock now. See The Official Book Website for more details.

One of the neat options that was available on the Boxster was the on board computer (OBC). This computer adds additional functionality to your gauge cluster: Range on remaining fuel, outside temperature, speed alert/gong, average fuel consumption, and average speed calculations. Many cars were not equipped with this option, but fortunately the programming and circuits are built into the gauge clusters. To activate the on board computer, all you need to do is to install the turn signal switch with the control stalk, and have the OBC functionality enabled by the Porsche factory programming tool (PST-2 or PIWIS).

The following table shows the list of parts that are required for the on board computer upgrade. All of these hard-to-find parts are easily available for purchase at the 101Projects.com website or PelicanParts.com.

Qty Part Number Description
1 999-650-056-40 Connector
1 999-650-057-40 Connector cover
3 000-979-009 Connector wire and pins for stalk (Volkswagen part)
2 000-979-010 Connector wire and pins for cluster (Volkswagen part)
1 996-613-219-10-EWC Turn signal stalk with cruise control
1 996-613-215-10-EWC Turn signal stalk without cruise control
1 996-613-509-10-A05 Turn signal cap
1 996-613-507-10-A05 Wiper cap
1 996-613-503-10-A05 On board computer cap
1 996-613-504-10-A05 Cruise control cap


Even if your car doesn't have cruise control and you're not planning on adding it, you might want to consider using this switch instead, as the cost is much cheaper than the one without the cruise control. You can simply purchase the new stalk, and then remove the new OBC stalk portion and then transfer it to your old stalk. The two connector wires are Volkswagen parts that appear to only be available from the dealer. These are probably pretty common repair items though, as my dealer had them in stock on the shelf when I arrived there.

The four-stalk version part number is 996-613-219-10-EWC, and is only currently available in the black mat / satin black finish. The early-style steering wheel switches were a glossy black. The small tabs on each of the stalks can be transferred over to the new stalk, but if they are glossy black, they will not match terribly well. The best option is to order four new tabs in the mat black / satin black finish, as per the part numbers in the table above.

The first step is to assemble your mini wire harness with the connectors and pins that you purchased. Take two of your three connector wires (000-979-009) and cut the two of them in half. Then insert the four wires with pins attached into slots 2 through 5 on the five pin connector 999-650-056-40. Take the remaining connector wire (000-979-009) and cut one of the pins off very close to the pin. Attach a ground eyelet on the end of this wire and then place into slot 1 of the five pin connector. Then snap on the connector cover. Now, cut in half your other two connector wires (000-979-010) and attach each one to the wires that exit from 2 through 5 on the connector. Label each wire with the proper pin number and then tie them together with some small zip ties. See Photo 5 for detailed steps on creating this harness. Be sure not to confuse the five connector wires: they look almost exactly the same to the naked eye, but fit into the different connectors.

Now, disconnect the battery (Pelican Technical Article: Battery Disconnect Switch / Battery Buddy Installation), pull out the steering wheel as far as possible using the lever at the bottom of the steering column, and then remove the steering wheel (Pelican Technical Article: Steering Wheel - 3-Spoke Wheel Upgrade). Disconnect and remove the gauge cluster as described in Pelican Technical Article: 996 Gauge Cluster Upgrade. Remove the steering wheel covers as detailed in Figure 1. Tape the airbag spring so that it doesn't rotate and remove it as per Figure 2. Pull the left and right rear connectors off of the turn signal stalk, mark its position on the steering shaft with a permanent marker, loosen the retaining clamp and remove it from the steering column (Figure 3). Route your new black harness connector alongside the other wires near to the large connector on the left side of the steering column.

Now it's time to plug the wires into one of the connectors that plugs into the back of the instrument cluster (see Photo 6 for instructions). Attach the eyelet to one of the ground screws on the chassis (see inset of Figure 3). Follow the table below for your year Boxster:

Boxster 1997-2000  
Connector Pin #2 Gauge Cluster Pin #20 Select Mode Down
Connector Pin #3 Gauge Cluster Pin #21 Speed Alert/Gong
Connector Pin #4 Gauge Cluster Pin #22 Select Mode Forwards
Connector Pin #5 Gauge Cluster Pin #25 Select Mode Backwards
     
Boxster 2001-2004
Connector Pin #2 Gauge Cluster Pin #23 Select Mode Down
Connector Pin #3 Gauge Cluster Pin #22 Speed Alert/Gong
Connector Pin #4 Gauge Cluster Pin #21 Select Mode Forwards
Connector Pin #5 Gauge Cluster Pin #24 Select Mode Backwards

If you happen to break the electrical connector plugs on the back of your cluster, then you can replace them with connector pieces from Porsche. For the 2001-04 clusters, the kit comes with the three connectors and the all three black insert plugs as well. The part number for this is PNA-721-04-300-020 and costs about $26. For the early-style clusters (1997-00), these connectors are available in a generic repair kit available from Porsche for about $5. This "Porsche Electrical Connector Repair Kit" has a part number of CARTOOL: Nr 96-0-000 or PNA-721-043-600.

With the new pins installed into the gauge connectors, reinstall the gauge cluster. Reinstall the new turn signal switch, and tighten down the clamp that holds it to the steering column. When you install the switch, the top metal surface should be positioned approximately 55mm from the end of the steering shaft. Don't slide it in all the way on the shaft, as this will give you trouble with the proper operation of the turn signal cancelling function. Line up the metal clamp with the knurled section of the steering column when you tighten it. If need be, you can adjust this later on as well.

Reinstall the airbag contact spring and the side covers for the steering column. Install the steering wheel back on the car and reconnect the battery. If your car didn't have the cruise control and on board computer enabled, then you need to make a trip to the Porsche dealer to have them turn on this functionality with the Porsche PST-2 or PIWIS tool (see Figure 7). Once the main computer is reprogrammed, you should have a working on board computer.

Poor Man's Version - Some people who have not wanted to go through the trouble or expense of purchasing the new turn signal stalk have instead installed extra rocker switches into the dash and wired them up to the gauge cluster to gain functionality of the computer without the installation of the expensive stalk. You can use the same wires as above, but instead use two rocker switches (PN: 996-613-980-00) that fit into the spare places in the center dash, to the left of the vents. See Photo 8 for more details.

Really Poor Man's Version: If you don't want to go through the process of installing any of the switches and have a 1997-00 Boxster, you can simply have the dealer turn on the on board computer function in your Boxster's computer. This will bring up the temperature display, although you cannot cycle through any of the other options. Starting in 2001, this no longer works.

After you have removed the steering wheel, you can then remove the equipment that covers the stalk.
Figure 1

After you have removed the steering wheel, you can then remove the equipment that covers the stalk. A- The side surrounds are held on with two small screws. B- the front surround is held on with four screws. If the steering wheel is still attached, then rotate it until you can access the screws. C- Pull off the front cover. D- Remove both the top and bottom steering column covers. E- A few screws hold the upper fascia to the metal part of the dashboard. F- Remove the fascia to expose the steering column.

This photo shows the details involved in removing the air bag contact ring.
Figure 2

This photo shows the details involved in removing the air bag contact ring. Be very careful of the fragile plastic tabs on the contact ring: they are very easy to break off, and this piece is about $200 to replace. The red arrow indicates the plastic piece (shown broken here) that is very easy to snap off if you are not careful. The blue arrows show the air bag and horn connectors that need to be disconnected, the orange arrow shows the turn signal switch connectors. Although you can simply loosen the air bag contact ring and leave it installed on the steering column, I recommend removing it completely and putting it aside as it's way too easy to damage it while you're working in that area.

Here's what the steering wheel column looks like with the switch removed.
Figure 3

Here's what the steering wheel column looks like with the switch removed. When attaching the new one, you need to clamp it down by tightening the pinch bolt (red arrow). The inset photo in the lower right shows where you need to attach the grounding harness for the new stalk switch.

Shown here is the upgraded turn signal that contains all of the switches and stalks required for both the On Board Computer, and cruise control.
Figure 4

Shown here is the upgraded turn signal that contains all of the switches and stalks required for both the On Board Computer, and cruise control. If your 2000 and later Boxster didn't originally come with cruise control and you wish to add it, then you should install this turn signal switch. Shown here is the mat black version of the four-stalk switch (part number 996-613-219-10). The small tabs on each of the stalks can be transferred over to the new stalk.

This photo shows the process of creating the small wire harness that connects the on board computer switch stalk to the gauge cluster.
Figure 5

This photo shows the process of creating the small wire harness that connects the on board computer switch stalk to the gauge cluster. A- Shown here is the completed harness, with the ground lead, and three pins that must be mated into the connector that plugs into the gauge cluster. Use small zip ties to join the whole harness together. It's also smart to label each wire (not shown here). B- I prefer to solder all my connections when possible to avoid any of them coming loose in the near future. Wrap each connection with electrical tape of course. C- Here's a close-up of the tiny pin that needs to be inserted into the black connector. Keep in mind that there are two different types of pins, and they both look the same. D- The pins should easily snap into the connector. If they don't, you are probably using the wrong pin and need to grab the other one. I suggest inserting the wires and pins into the connector prior to soldering the connections, just so that you don't have to take the whole harness apart if you find you have made a mistake.

You can open up the connectors and remove the inner portion by squeezing the base of the plug.
Figure 6

You can open up the connectors and remove the inner portion by squeezing the base of the plug. The inner portion which contains all of the wires and pins will slide out of the side of the connector. Insert your new pin into the appropriate slot. Be aware that there are two different pins used on these wires, a small one and a larger one. The small one will very easily snap into place, the larger one will only snap into place with a lot of force. Make sure that you create your wire harness using the proper pins for this connector. As shown in the photo, I found it useful to label the wires since they were all yellow colored.

When the installation is complete, the computer will not work, unfortunately, until the coding is modified in the instrument cluster using the Porsche factory PST-2 or PIWIS programming tool.
Figure 7

When the installation is complete, the computer will not work, unfortunately, until the coding is modified in the instrument cluster using the Porsche factory PST-2 or PIWIS programming tool. This tool is only found at Porsche dealers, and the occasional independent shop like Callas Rennsport in Torrance, CA. Under "Instrument Cluster", change the coding to show On-board computer to be "present" and save the changes. After this change is made, the on-board computer should function normally. Be sure that your car is not missing the "Option Code" spec, as this will generate errors when you try to update the car with the tool.

The â€Å
Figure 8

The "poor man's" version is a great way to get the functionality of the computer without having to install the stalk. Simply install two rocker switches into the blanks on the left side of the dash, and wire them up to the pins on the back of the cluster. Wire one of the two switches to the pins that control "mode forwards" and "mode backwards", and the other switch to "select mode down" and "speed gong/alert" (see table in the text). The rocker switches that are available are pretty neat and useful. This one (for footwell lighting, PN: 996-613-980-00) contains two switches (left and right), an internal LED, and an internal light bulb for nighttime illumination. 1- Switch left, 2- Switch right, 3- Nighttime illumination, 4- Common, 5- LED lamp. To use this switch with the OBC, wire pins 2,3,4,5 from the table above to pins 1 and 2 of two different switches, and then connect the green ground wire to pin 4 of both switches.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Dave Meredith Comments: Planning to do this work soon using the dash switch option in lieu of the stalk. I am looking to find the model of the pins that are used at the end of the harness that fits to the gauge cluster connector, which appear to be of a different type than are used at the stalk connector ends.
While I can certainly buy the referenced VW cable, my preference would be to source these connectors separately and to then crimp them onto my own wires. This way I can use a wire of a long length sufficient to avoid the need to use the in-line splice connector, and I can also then use a different wire color for each run, thus avoiding the “all yellow” scheme which is shown herein.
I have heard these connectors referred to as “Molex” which is a brand name, but these connectors seem to come in different sizes. The most common Molex size that I have found is 0.093”.
So, my questions:
a Are these Molex 0.093” diameter connectors the correct size for the gauge ends of the wiring harness?
b These Molex connectors come in male and female configurations. Which gender type is correct for use at the harness ends?
November 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not 100% sure of the manufacturer or part number. The parts specialists will know. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Brian Comments: I am ready to order all the parts but am unclear on one thing. After I create the wiring harness as described and plug the 4 wires into the harness behind my instrument cluster and attach the ground, I am unclear where the plug end of my "new" harness goes as well as the two harnesses that were already coming out of the 4 stalk switch.
Thanks in advance for any help you can lend so I can pull the trigger on this.
October 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The new harness plugs into the stalk assembly and the vehicle harness (as you mentioned). Is this what info you needed?- Nick at Pelican Parts  
doctorz1026 Comments: The Porsche part number for the connector pins at the OBC stalk is 999-650-135-22 and they are $0.72 each. You can crimp then solder, or get the proper crimping tool
September 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
OB Comments: Ja
If I understand correctly you have a three stalk car including OBC. Turn indicators, wipers, and OBC. You seem to be saying you do not have cruise control. You say your turn indicator is broken. The answer to your question if I have the facts right is yes you can buy a new two stalk unit and add your old OBC stalk. You could also buy a three stalk unit with cruise control and add OBC and remove the cruise control. Good luck.
August 2, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks again for helping out and answering some questions.

We appreciate the help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Ja Comments: Thanks Nick, I will lose function to what? Is it the OBC. If so is it simple to reprogram.
July 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, OBC. I am guessing as I have never done what you are asking for advice on. Essentially removing options. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ja Comments: I have a 2002 986, the indicator stalk will not engage.I have the 3 stalk OBC set which is expensive to replace, am I right in thinking that it's possible to buy a new 2 stalk version and transfer my old OBC stalk to it and it will work?
June 25, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should. You will likely lose function and need to program the vehicle. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
O.B. Comments: Don't get fished into this project too quickly. The outcome is not always positive. When I first came across this project I thought a 4 stalk switch, some wires a connector and a little programming, Why not? Well I put in the 4 stalk, bought the wires and connector, and made the wiring harness per the instructions. It's all installed and doesn't work. First problem was my cluster didn't use the pin sizes in the harness specified. The second is that my Durametric doesn't seem to be able to turn on the OBC. My cluster is returning a 9114 error that Durametric can't handle and so who knows. Anyway I am happy for all that could make this project work, but I would not do it again. It just isn't worth it especially after the last post indicating that when it does work much of the function is truncated.
June 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info and feedback. We appreciate you taking the time to share you experience, even if not 100% positive.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Sam Comments: Hello Brian.

Thanks for your response. It would thus seem that the 'mod' essentially provides a trip recorder, rather than the functions of a true on board computer.

With regard to instrument panels, there are three LCD "windows" located in the speedometer binnacle, tachometer binnacle and temp/fuel binnacle respectively.

My hypothesis that the tachometer LCD window display is OBC-ready may not be totally correct

In later model Boxster 986s year 2001+ , characterised by the digital speedo LCD display being in the speedometer binnacle rather than the tachometer binnacle as per earlier models, Porsche part numbers for the instrument cluster have the following format:

986-641-2nx-0z-colour code

- where x = 5 for manual transmission or 6 for Tiptronic [7 or 8 respectively for UK cars]
- where z is a numeric from 0 to 6
- where colour code is something like 70C, FHB, EMS

If n = 2 or 3 car with 2.7 litre or 3.2 litre engine respectively, this denotes the instrument cluster belongs to a vehicle factory-fitted with a full function on-board computer, which I believe was only introduced from 2002. Perhaps someone can confirm my view from their 2002 owner's manual.

The 986-641-22x and 986-241-23x panels have a modified LCD window in the tachometer binnacle, with enhanced character display including free format lower case text. The LCD 7 segment character display windows in the other binnacles are unchanged.


Thus, if one wants full OBC functionality for 2002-04 models, it would appear that in addition to Pelican's OBC upgrade mods, one must source and retro-fit an appropriate instrument cluster with the enhanced tachometer LCD display. Hopefully it's a success, or just requires a minor tweak in the DME software.

In Brian's case, viz '03. with Tiptronic, that would be a 986-641-226-0z, which would also work for me, except for the analogue speedo marked in mph. We use km/h in the land down under.

Unfortunately, whilst doing the OBC "fix", I didn't take note of the part no. which is imprinted on a paper label attached to the rear of the clusters. I will have to unscrew it again and take a peek.


PS Brian, I presume NH is New Hampshire. I am in Australia; we have been experiencing an unseasonably warm winter with temperatures in the high 20's. But that's Celsius! So no probs with roof down.
June 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sam,

Thanks again for taking the time to answer in such detail. Much appreciated. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Brian Comments: Hi Sam,

My main intension was to complete the cruise control upgrade
and the OBC was a nice extra.
I agree the functionally is limited. Seems less than what the owners manual indicates. However I do the like function of miles to empty instead of the light that comes on at 1/8 of a tank.
I also like the outside temperature function. I live in NH an its nice to know when the temps higher than 30 degrees, so I can put the top down.
June 10, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the input on this one. We appreciate the help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Sam Comments: I have just completed the OBC "fix" on my 2004 Boxster with Tiptronic, and had it activated; many thanks for your instructions.

However, I was a little disappointed with the outcome, having expected access to all the menus, functions, displays and warning message outputs as described in the 'Instrument Panel with On-Board Computer' chapter in my Boxster Driver's Manual. Perhaps I was too hopeful. I thought I would at least be able to set 12hr clock mode.

My instrument panel is the same as depicted in tom_fren's post of 20 Jan 2016, with just 2 lines of output data in the tachometer window; the window's 3rd available OBC line is not utilised.

The 1st line is constant, displaying the odometer.
The 2nd line, after the OBC "fix", becomes a variable output, but just sequentially cycles 5 parameters viz tripmeter, fuel use, avg speed, range on residual fuel, ext temp, by pushing the OBC stalk up OR down.
Stalk push forward does nothing, pull back zeroes the first 3 parameters.
If I may ask Brian post of 14 Mar 2016, is this all you got?

So, why the 4 pole stalk switch? A single 2 way momentary switch would have achieved this outcome. Clearly, it must be that a further tweak to the DME that 'enables' full on-board computer functionality is required. The stalk has the capability, and the tachometer window display is ready.

Does anybody know how to achieve full OBC functionality?
June 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I haven't done this one myself, I think it requires software updates, that at times the dealer seems to struggle with pushing through.

here is replyHi Sam, My main intension was to complete the cruise control upgrade and the OBC was a nice extra. I agree the functionally is limited. Seems less than what the owners manual indicates. However I do the like function of miles to empty instead of the light that comes on at 1/8 of a tank. I also like the outside temperature function. I live in NH an its nice to know when the temps higher than 30 degrees, so I can put the top down. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Brian Comments: Breaking the little black fragile tabs in illustration #2.
They can easily be broken when your reinstall the steering wheel. Need to make sure they line up in couple a couple slots when reinstalling the steering wheel.

Torx driver to remove the steering wheel on my 2003 was a 30
May 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for sharing your installation process and experience. These type of comments add so much to the Pelican tech community.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Brian Comments: Hi Ray,

My local tech never asked for the codes, so I'm not sure they are needed. I was also concerned about the codes but When I brought it into him he just knew what to do. It never came up.
May 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the input on this one. We appreciate the help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Ray Comments: This is a question for Brian who did a OBC & Cruise Control upgrade on his 2003 Boxster Tiptronic.....I have a 2002 Boxster S Tiptronic I am planning to add Cruise Control but no OBC.

The Pelican Parts Tech Article about installing Cruise Control says this:

"For all 2000-04 cars, once you have all of the wiring done, you will need to have the dealer activate the cruise control function using the PST-2 or PIWIS programming unit. The section for programming this in the tool is located in the DME module, under the Coding section. You also need to activate the instrument cluster for cruise control as well. This is found in the "Instrument Cluster" coding section within the Porsche programming tool. Make sure your car has the "order code" properly set, otherwise you may have trouble properly programming the instrument cluster. For a manual transmission Boxster 2.7, the order code is 986310. For a Boxster S 3.2 manual transmission, it's 986320. Entering either of these should be sufficient for programming your cluster."

Brian, what "ORDER CODE" did you use for your Tiptronic Boxster? Thanks so much!
April 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Ok, hopefully Brian sees this. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Robert Comments: I have a 1997 boxster base, manual, with no cruise control. The steering wheel is a two stalk. Is it possible to buy a three stalk apparatus and use the cruise control switch in place of the multi function switch if my car doesn't have cruise control?
April 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't believe so. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Brian Comments: I just completed the OBC upgrade on my 2003 Boxster with Tiptronic. Seemed very simple after I was done. I also completed the next project cruise control at the same time. Biggest problem was figuring out the required parts needed. When you purchase a 4 lever stalk there are two wire connectors that come with it. One has a 6 wire connector but you only use slots 1-5 the other has a 4 wire connector. The project is to run wires from both of these to the 34 wire block/connector that plugs into the rear of the gauge cluster. I believe the confusion in ordering parts is there are two different size wires for these connectors depending on the year of the car. My 2003 only required the 000-979-009-E wires at both connections.
These are about 16 inches long with 009 connectors at each end.
They are more than long enough to including the wire to the fuse block. My fuse block is located on the drivers side of ca. Connection to the fuse block is needed for cruise control project.
So in my case I just needed to order 5 wires for the OBC and 4 for the cruise control along with the plug sockets #999-650-512-40-OEM & 999-650-513-40-OEM the wires slide into for the connection to the stalk. I didn't need to cut,solder or make up a harness.
I don't own a 27T Torx driver but a standard 25T worked fine to remove the air bag.
The surface was painted where I had to fasten an eyelet so
I scuffed it up a little to insure a good connection.
On my 2003 the connector I slid all the wires into is white, and is located to the left of the steering column. In the middle of this connector is black block that slides out to allow the installation of the wires. This black connecting block has two rows of slots one is numbered 1...17 and the other side 18....34.
March 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for sharing your installation process and experience. These type of comments add so much to the Pelican tech community.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
tom_fren Comments: Follow up: to present what I mean attaching picture of mine gauge cluster. It looks like very simple version of OBC adjustment.
* asking because I cannot fine any relevant information over WWW.
January 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks, got it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
tom_fren Comments: Hello. I did the upgrade in my 2004 Box 2.7,MT and successfully activated it via PIWIS. Thanks for perfect step-by-step guide.
But I have one question.
Is the '04 gauge cluster different than those in older models ? User guide shows some advance settings in OBC like language, check functions, etc.
But after activating OBC I can only switch between trip odometer, distance, temp and speed limit.
January 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not sure. I opened a post in our forums. A Pelican community member may be able to answer your question.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
CelticRover Comments: I own a 2000 Porsche Boxter. Soon after I purchased the car, the onboard computer display light went out I was forced to rely on the left and right guages for info speed, RPM, etc. One morning, my left tires traveled over the road growlers those running along the yellow lane lines and the display returned and operated as it's suppose to. Later that day, the display went off again. So now, I can't read any of the readouts unless a bright sun is behind me or if I shine a small light on the display window. The OBC is working as it should Distance to empty, outside temp, all the other functions it's supposed to perform, I just can't read it from the driver's seat. I thought one of the fuses controlling the instrument cluster may have gone bad, so I replaced all of those. Still, no dice. Solutions?
October 8, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Likely a faulty display or the connection is no good. Start by checking the electrical connector to see if it is properly attached. Then check for fault codes to see if any are stored in the unit. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Boxsterman Comments: Thanks!
April 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No problem. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Boxsterman Comments: 2001 Boxster S
April 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, you will struggle a little bit more without removing the wheel but it should be possible. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Boxsterman Comments: Can I get to the back of the instrument cluster without removing the steering wheel? Then complete the wiring to rocker switches in the dash for the "poor man's version"?
April 17, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What vehicle are you working on? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Lou Comments: I have a 98 Boxster. I have the computer enabled only, but no stalk installed. I therefore have the outside temperature displayed, nothing else. This has been like this for many years. Today when I started the car up, I noticed that the temperature is no longer displayed, but the miles until empty display! What happened?
January 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be a faulty display. If the signal was bad, I imagine it would default to a temp, around -40f. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
bubo962 Comments: in which connector gray, green or blue cruster used to connect the wire harness of the stalk
January 13, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I believe step six shows the connector you place the new rie into. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
john d Comments: The old cluster was burnt so I had to replaced them. Everything works with the new cluster when I test them including all lights, oil, speedometer...with the exception of turn signal and hazard/warning lights. But it's weird when I turn the hazard light on and flip the turn signal....it's working, but not by itself.
November 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Ok, thanks for the info.

I would think the hazard switch is faulty. The cluster is only bulb lit indicators, other than that it doesn't do anything for the turn signals. You can check the output of the turn switch tot he luster when you activate the signal, look for battery positive.- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
john d Comments: Just replaced my cluster instrument on my 97 Boxster but somehow my turn signal are not working. My hazard/warning lights works when you turn the signal lights up or down. Everything's works fine except for that one.
November 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would install the old cluster to test, if the lights work normally, the new cluster is faulty. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Vito Comments: My 2001 Boxster s has the control stalk already, and there are some things working like avg mpg and tach, and speedo, and cruise, but temp, fuel gauge and even turn signals are not.... Is it the OBC that has to be activated???
October 18, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds more to me like you have some faults in the system. Are just the turn signals at the cluster not working, or outside as well? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
lionel Comments: Same as Kevin OConnor below : I've split and soldered the 009 and 010 vag wires but the good ones are 000-979-009-EA-VAG on both end :
010 was very hard to insert in cluster...
However it's working...
Boxster S 2001
May 28, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
P Dwight Comments: I have not seen these in person.....But; These pins look just like the pins I extracted from a connector when I was adding OBC to my BMW 323IS 1998....anyone else noticed this ??
May 24, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The could be similar. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
P Dwight Comments: Kevin if you still have the wires let me know...make me a deal and I will buy them
May 24, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out which part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
ibaker Comments: Hi - Am I correct in assuming that this will also work OK with the 996. Are the connections into the back of the instrument cluster the same ?
Thanks for a great article.
May 2, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The article only applies to 986. I opened a post in our forums. A Pelican community member may be able to answer your question.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Kevin OConnor Comments: I have a 2003 Boxster not S, 5-speed and I found that, for my vehicle, the 000-979-010-E is NOT the correct pin type for the connector that plugs into the instrument cluster. In my car, the instrument cluster took the 000-979-009-EA-VAG, the same as the connectors for the steering wheel stalk. See in the photo where I have the two wires from Pelican along with one of the factory wires I pulled out of the instrument cluster connector on my 2003 Boxster. Obviously, this makes the project many times easier as you don't have to splice any wires. For my car, the 000-979-009-EA-VAG wire has the correct pin type on both ends. I wish I had known this before I ordered and cut up these expensive wires! If anyone needs a set of wires for an older Boxster, half 000-979-010-E, half 000-979-009-EA-VAG nicely soldered with heat shrink covering, let me know.
March 31, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
lkchris Comments: Actually, nowhere in the instructions does it state nor is there a photo to show where the black connector block end of the DIY wiring harness connects. Is it correct to assume it connects to the harness coming off the the actual OBC switch lever on the turn signal stalk assembly?
March 19, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The procedure says the harness connects the cluster to the stalk. See here:

This photo shows the process of creating the small wire harness that connects the on board computer switch stalk to the gauge cluster. A- Shown here is the completed harness, with the ground lead, and three pins that must be mated into the connector that plugs into the gauge cluster. Use small zip ties to join the whole harness together. It's also smart to label each wire (not shown here). B- I prefer to solder all my connections when possible to avoid any of them coming loose in the near future. Wrap each connection with electrical tape of course. C- Here's a close-up of the tiny pin that needs to be inserted into the black connector. Keep in mind that there are two different types of pins, and they both look the same. D- The pins should easily snap into the connector. If they don't, you are probably using the wrong pin and need to grab the other one. I suggest inserting the wires and pins into the connector prior to soldering the connections, just so that you don't have to take the whole harness apart if you find you have made a mistake - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
mytoy986 Comments: I'm getting together everything I will need to add the OBC and cruise to my 2000 base 2.7 Boxster. The temp is already displaying so I assume the OBC is turned on. Now question one is, are the quantities on all part numbers listed 1? and question two is since the PNA-721-043-00-202-OEM is discontinued, Is the PN-721-o43-60-0OR-OEM a replacment, or is there another option. Thanks in advance.
January 16, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I believe the quantities are 1. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out what is discontinued and available. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
blowingkisses Comments: I have a 1999 Porsche 911 Cabrolet whose battery was disconnected for car repairs. Upon reconnection, the OBC now needs resetting to my desired display, however I cannot find the OBC lever. My owners manuel shows the lever below the tach, but my car does not have that lever. How do I reset the OBC to show the feature I desire
October 28, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Try this:

All doors closed.
Turn ignition ON.
Use the lever on the left side of steering column, move lever up to turn on OBC.
Push lever toward front of vehicle to set OBC.
If you need to move back a selected function, pull lever toward you.

- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
max Comments: hello, I have recently replaced my battery on my Porsche boxster 911- 1999, after a dead episode, thinking that my battery had live its full life of five years,I REPLACE IT WITH A FRESH NEW ONE after going for a test drive and putting the car back in the garage, I was happy thinking the problem had been resolved, later that evening ,went back to garage, to set the garbage to the curb and I notice my gauge cluster was on. now I see how my old battery was drain, need to know what is causing the problem, did notice my ignition key was difficult to turn, in one occasion. thank you. I have your manual, 101 Projects for your Porsche Boxster, great BOOK.
October 14, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: When the cluster is ON, are you able to operate the accessories, like the power windows and radio? If so, the ignition switch may be faulty. Keeping the vehicle powered up. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ramo80 Comments: Hi, I'm not sure if this question has been answer so i apologize if it was. I have a 2001 Boxster Tip. I bought the OBC computer stalk on ebay. The seller says that it worked before he took it off. Do i need to create this wiring harness to get my OBC to work or will my MOD be a plug and play?

Thanks
September 16, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I believe you will need the parts listed in this tech article (that are associated with your specifci vehicle): http://www.pelicanparts.com/techarticles/Boxster_Tech/91-ELEC-turn_signal_switch_-_OBC_upgrade/91-ELEC-turn_signal_switch_-_OBC_upgrade.htm

Check the lower list for your vehicle model and year.- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Newart Comments: The install in my 2001 S went very well. Had trouble pushing those clips into the cluster, but once they were well inserted, everything worked as it should. A fun upgrade!
August 4, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Glad we could help - Kerry at Pelican Parts  
Bartok Comments: Hey Wayne:
Thank you for this great project! I have a 2001 Boxster S and was able to complete this in just over 5 hours including the activation of the instrument gauge cluster with a Durametric.
Jerry
July 18, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the feedback. Glad we could help.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Wamou Comments: I have a 2003 Box S can I do this mod ? The step I don't get is the Porsche factory programming tool... I guess Porsche will not do that so where I can have this ?
July 13, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You only need the Porsche tool if you are eliminating the button for the on board computer. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Audi Comments: Hello, I hace a 2007 Cayman with the 2.7l engine. I have had to replace computer components that control tail lights, front and rear hatch etc. I am now getting check engine light and no temperature indicator on the dash. Is it a coincidence or could all be computer relay related? I also get water in the gas pedal in a car wash and know that under the driver seat sit all these modules? thanks Adrian
June 27, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would bet the issues are related to the water intrusion problem. First repair the water leak. Then replace any of the modules that got wet. Inspect the wiring and be sure there is no corrosion. The modules will likely have to be coded or programmed using a Porsche scan tool. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
irb Comments: I have just installed and enabled this and it works OK except for the temp which is showing -. Is this because I dont have aircon or do I have to enable something else on my 2001 2.7.
There is mention of having the option enabled do i need to do this ?
June 12, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I'm not 100% sure. I opened a post in our forums. A Pelican community member may be able to answer your question - Nick at Pelican Parts  
NewArt Comments: Any reason I can't just snip this part off, see red arrow, and replace it with any old molex connector and regular, non VW, wire? I realize that I will still need the VW 000-979-010 connector wires for the cluster
June 3, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would advise against that, as stated earlier. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
NewArt Comments: OBC job update:
Found the problem. Just a bad contact in the grey clip in the cluster.
I think I have the rest figuted out too. I'll post an update for this configuration when I have everything functional.
June 2, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the follow up. We appreciate it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
NewArt Comments: I picked up a 996-613-219-10 complete with clock spring on e-bay originally from an 03 Carrera 6 speed. I needed to replace the turn signal anyway as it was not cancelling after a turn. I installed it in my 01 986 S with tiptronic, so I didn't use the new clock spring as it was for a manual transmission.
Well, I couldn't figure out the wiring as my connectors don't look like the ones in the book see photo. The turning indicator works properly now, but I've lost my roof indicator light and my transmission gear selector indicator lights. Maybe because it's from a Carrera? Same part number though. Red arrow shows extra connector on 4-stalk switch.
Any suggestions?
May 31, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would suggest using the right parts. There may be a circuit that you need that is missing from the part you installed. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
HP_Sie Comments: Hi I am pleased to say that the Poor mans version works for 1997 Boxster
2 Flaws though : 1. the temp. shows --,-C . And according to my Boxster manual 1 and 2 are Up and Down. 3 and 4 is Backward and Forward
maybe it's Stupid, but is PIN 20 and 21 Down and Gong
Pin 22 and 25 Forward and Backward

thanks
hp

April 27, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional information. We appreciate it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Bartok Comments: Hi Wayne:
Recently, when I use my "right hand" turn signal, I have to hold the stalk up as the mechanism is pushing down and is not allowing the stalk to click in. What part needs to be replaced?
March 14, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like you need to replace the turn signal switch. Give our parts specialists a call: 1-888-280-7799 they will help you find the right part. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Bartok Comments: Thank you Wayne, much appreciated!
February 17, 2013
aklava Comments: Pelican no longer sells the 5 pin connector and cover 999-650-056-40 and 999-650-057-40. What are my alternative options to use as part of the OBC install?
January 18, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Try 999-650-513-40-OEM instead... - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Bartok Comments: Ken JAN 8/13
When you refer to the Durametric, do you mean the Porsche factory PST-2 or PIWIS? What is the enthusiast version? I also have a 2001 Boxster S and would like to do this mod.
Thank you,
Jerry
January 12, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The Durametric tool that he's referring to is a consumer-based diagnostic tool that was developed for the aftermarket. This tool performs a lot of the functions that the PST-2 or PIWIS tools perform for the dealers. The insidious version allows you to diagnose and set codes on three individual cars – after that you need to upgrade to the professional version so that you can work on more cars. The tool reads the VIN number of the car and stores it in its settings – you can only work on three VINs with the enthusiast product. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
luca Comments: hello! nice manual!! i have two questions regarding this: first, i have a 996 of 1999, is it the same way to go as you show in your great manual? secondly, in the figure 8 the poor mans version you write "and then connect the green ground wire to pin 4 of both switches". hmm, i cant see anywhere a green wire in your pictures. do you mean the wire seen in figure 5 in picture A, the one with the "ring"?
thank you very much!
luca
January 9, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes the instructions for the Boxster should be the same as for the 996. If were talking about ground wires that all you need to do is tie a wire from that came to a metal plate on the chassis, similar to what you see in the lower right-hand corner of figure 3. Hope this helps. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Ken Comments: Yes you can activate the OBC with the Durametric. Even the enthusiast version. I just did it successfully this morning on my 2001 Boxster S. It was very simple. Just logically follow the instructions on the durametric screen. By the way, I am no mechanic or electrician but I managed to follow the instructions in the 101 Projects booklet and get the job done.
January 8, 2013
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the confirmation! - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Wayne at Pelican Parts Comments: Someone recently asked which connector color to use on the later cars?
May 15, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The early cars use a white connector, the later ones use a grey connector. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Surfer0114 Comments: I bought the book, but I am having trouble understanding.

Is there a tutorial for the Poor Man's OBC somewhere. I really don't want to remove the steering wheel, and I am clueless as where I tie in my electrical lines.
February 16, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not aware or a "poor man's version". This tech article lists the procedure and the parts needed. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Chuck Comments: Hello I have a 2002 Boxster S w/ cruise control. If I buy the part # 996 613 219 10 switch can I just change it out with my original turn signal/ cruise control/wiper switch and get the car reprogrammed for OBC enabled by the dealer ? will this work or do I still need to make the wiring harness connector you show?
December 19, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, you will need to add the additional wire harness in order to get the OBC to operate correctly. If your car didn't originally come with the OBC option, then the wires are not there to connect to the switch. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Feldgary Comments: It is my understanding that this obc upgrade also applies to the 996. Durametric lists the abillity to turn on the obc with their software. Do you agree?
November 13, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should work with 996 as the systems are similar. Durametric would know best what their scan tool is capable of. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ron Comments: With the Poor Man's Version does this mean only the instrument cluster needs to be removed, and not any portion of the steering wheel? Also, does this still require creating the miniharness?
October 10, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, the poor mans' version doesn't require putting the switches on the steering wheel. You still need to wire it into the back of the cluster though. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
andolies Comments: My modification worked! I have a 1998 Boxster with cruise control. I first tried the poor man's version, and that worked perfectly. I used two foot well switches to get all 4 functions up, down, reset and gong. Hitting the switches while driving takes too much attention, and makes using the functionality is a bit annoying. I'm just about to install the 4 stock part on the steering wheel. Couple of observations.
1. the instructions are perfect
2. the VW wiring parts avoided any problems with pins etc. They just fit
3. Various leds and status lights did not work after putting the gauges back on the first time. It was a simple careless mistake. The black connector behind the gauge was not completely pressed in. Seems that when Porsche had replaced a gauge bulb in the dash, they broke or removed the connector cap that "locks" the black connector to the male connector behind the gauges. I didn't get the connectors snapped to together properly
4. If you have the temperature showing, then your OBC is on!
September 3, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Great! Thanks for the additional info / feedback. I'm going to copy this over to the forums so that others can see it as well. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Mike Eley Comments: I have a 2003 boxster with tiptronic transmission. I installed the turn signal stalk with cruise and on board computer controls. Took my porsche to a porsche dealer to do their programing to make my new options work. The cruise control works great, however they were unable to make the OBC function. They could not find the OBC option on my car in order to turn the option on. Any additional information or help would certainly be appreciated.
August 14, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Dealers can be so clueless at times! For the early cars, it should be located under the "Coding" section for the Instrument Cluster. I think you also have to make sure that your option code is set properly for the coding to work - some cars were incorrectly set from the factory with the wrong or blank option code (this code says 986 Boxster convertible, for example). I haven't used my PST-2 tool on a 2003 car, but I believe that the option to enable the OBC is there. If not in "Instrument Cluster", then it might be in the coding / programming section of the DME, as in 2003 they went to the MOST system, which is slightly different. I'll copy this question to the boards, and perhaps someone there will have the exact location of where to go in the tool to set this option. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Designprof Comments: I have a 1999 Boxster. I was told by my local Porsche dealer that this OBC upgrade will not work on my car because "it wasn't installed". However, I have an outside temp indication below my mph readout so doesn't this mean I have it? Will this upgrade work for me? I don't want to mess around with the electricals unless I am sure. Thanks.
August 11, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Again, dealers are pretty clueless and often don't know much outside of the scope of what's in the factory manuals. It sounds like a previous owner might have already turned this on in your car to allow you to see the temperature display. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Jack Comments: Will it work on a 2004 Boxster 986?
I tried to enable the On-board computer with the PST-2, but nothing showing on the dash e.g. temperature.
Do I need to install the stalk or did the Poor man's version before enable the On-board computer?
April 25, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, it should work with the 2004, but I've heard some of these cars are temperamental when being used with the PST-2 and PIWIS. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
jb99Boxster Comments: Oh well. I ordered the book 101 things to do with your Boxster. Tried the OBC mod on my 1999 boxster. Now not only does the OBC not function it will not step through the settings the lights on the LED MPH, TEMP, and LED odometer do not WORK!! Wow. First project, first failure.
March 25, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I'm going to to copy this question to the forums, and we can diagnose the issue there. At first guess, I'm thinking that your connectors are not properly seated in the rear of the gauge cluster. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Luke Comments: Will this work on my 2000 Boxster S? That is, enabling the full functionality of the computer? Avg speed, MPG, range to empty, etc. Not just the temperature
July 26, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes, fully applicable to the 2000 Boxster 'S'. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  

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