The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by shocker998md, Feb 4, 2011.
I know what you mean , my dome light went out soooo
At least it was not a 22 round
Aw, crimps? How hard is it to fire up an iron and do some solder splices?
This is a great thread at the right time. I was out in the garage with my 12 y/o daughter taking the interior out of the car and getting it dismantled for a complete rebuild, we were taking out the wiring harness and found 4 fuse panels in different locations and the good lord is the only one who knows what all the wires started in or as prior to being the my 50 chevy.
I had a 57 chevy 210 wagon, that caught on fire leaving work, i had my 6 month old daughter in the car. We were fine and I got the fire out quickly, but that was enough for me to make the wiring a priority in all my projects.
Nothing I hate to use more than those wire butt connectors for a trailer light harness. Or any wiring for that matter.
I solder everything, and use shrink tubing!
Bought an old Toronado that the heater control valve must have gone out, because the previous owner replaced it with typical household water shut off valves.
Not just one, but two. One on each heater hose.
Had to fix that one properly.
It is a pain to have to go back and have to worry about redoing someones half assed job.
An old girlfriends father used to haul scrap cars around using an old Ford pickup ... that old pickup had an actual house style light switch (with the wall plate) mounted in the dash. I guess it's just a matter of "use what you have/already own". He was probably thinking "if it was designed for 120volts it can certainly handle 12volts".
when i went to fix and rewire the horn on my luv pickup i found the previous owner used telephone cords. stripped the tiny wires and twisted them together to make a fatter gauge wire.
Back in the early 70's ,Dad had a 55' Ford p/u he'd picked up on the cheap
to use as a parts chaser for his Texaco station. After a year or so, He sold it to a neighbor's kid we nicknamed Bumpkin.
Bumpkin was in his early 20's and not too interested in work, but Momma finally gave him the ultimatum , so he went and found a job. He'd had the old Ford for about 6 mos. and called Dad about inspecting it so he could drive it to work. "Sure, drop it off and I'll get to it....."
Bumpkin told Dad he had a new wood flat bed on it and needed the taillights fixed and "Oh, the horn doesn't work either.......".
Next morning, there sits Bumpkin's truck with the new trailer tailights NAILED to the rear wooden crossmember. While having a good chuckle about his light installation, Dad walks over and peeks in the cab as he's curious about the horn problem. The chuckles turn into full blown,bust yer ass laughing. Brother and I walk over and peer in to find the ol' Ford's steering wheel laying on the passenger side floor, all beat to shit and bent like a pretzel!!!! Clamped onto the column splines is a rusty 10" pair of Vice-Grips........
Bumpkin's explaination was something like...."Hell, I only used it to go to the pond fishing and around the farm......it's only 4 miles or so and there's never any cops way back there.........You mean I have to have a real steering wheel to get it inspected?????? Heck, it's been driving fine for 4 months or so......."
Ron White said it best..............."You can't fix stupid.........."
I wish someone would make wire available with the different stripe/color codes available like modern wiring, it seems the parts stores only carry about 6 colors of wire.
airplanes too,except it's usually white
the problem is they would drive it through the floor pan, then the car wouldn't move, of course no one could steal it either
If I had the gas to get back and forth, I would love to take the tech school program for industrial controls, I did take the course for it my last two years of high school, I've been doing it for a hobby since I was a little kid, it's easy for me for some reason
you use silicone dielectric grease between your grounds and the ground bolt, this keeps out the corrosion, the same stuff that protects the connections between your taillight bulbs and the sockets, it also goes into multi pin connectors that are exposed to weather. and solder is the way to go, solder and heat shrink, nothing will beat an older weller industrial soldering gun, you need plenty of heat for automotive connections, a 40 watt pencil iron isn't gonna do it
cheap electrical tape will come loose, the good stuff will actually bond to itself like glue, it's not cheap anymore though, and for crying out loud, if you run a remote battery, put in a big breaker or maxifuse and be careful of how you run the wire, some of the remote battery installs i've seen scare the crap out of me.
if you need wire, look for a junkyard that will sell you a harness cheap, minivans are your friend, especially ones with rear air and lots of accessories, take out the entire harness, unwrap it cut it apart and roll it up, now you have lots of late model high quality wire in long lengths, well worth a half a day of your time, good wire isn't cheap anymore
Now that is class, just pure class!
But if you were a little more environment aware you would use one of those fluorescent bulbs. Serious man, I mean c'mon, maybe a solar panel on the roof?
You know what would be even cooler? One with a fan! Yeah, air conditioning!!
Wow man, new prescription pills for my back...........and I mean WOW!
Automotive wiring is stranded to allow the wires to flex without breaking. Solder makes a stiff place in the wire that can not flex and will break at each end of the joint. Soldering joints is NOT recommended for cars.
Before I tore into my (at the time) running truck, I disconnected the battery for a month or so while she sat in the garage. Later, I couldn't for the life of me figure out why the battery kept draining, why she refused to start after I used another battery, and why using a battery charger wouldn't so much as get the lights to turn on. Turns out, the previous owner used the red wire as a ground and the black as the live wire... Just a color, but still frustrating!
Also, loved it when I found that the brake return spring was connected to the frame with zip-ties... :s
there is nothing wrong with using solder in a car harness, the small part of the harness not flexible due to the solder is not going to break, a lot of OEM manufacturers use solder in parts of the harness right from the factory. it's just a connection soldered, not the entire wire being stiff.
I agree, the small area that is stiffened isn't going to matter. As long as the soldered area is not in a bundle of wire that is constantly flexing, like in a door harness, and the joint is soldered properly, it should last forever.
I've seen this happen when people dont know how to solder correctly.
Use too much solder at a connection and it will actually be wicked up into the wire.
Also, anytime solder is used in a car, I would recommend that a decent length of shrink tubing to act as a strain relief...
But solder is generally avoided on auto and planes for the vibration, breakage concern....
We use solder splices on aircraft all the time . . .
The big difference between aircraft solder and the commercially available stuff is that the aviation grade solder has led in the solder to allow the joint to flex prior to breaking and the commercial stuff has had the lead removed.....EPA concerns and such. Still, a properly prepared and executed butt splice with heat shrink is preferable to solder, as the crimp done with the proper tool will be identical from operator to operator while the solder method can fail due to differences induced by the operator.
Welcome to my world...
a soldiered joint is fine, a poorly soldered joint is not good, the latter is easier to do than the first.
I learned long ago that solder in a race car is a very bad idea and have carried that into the hotrod biz too.
Buddy of mine had a 67 Mustang convertible that was rusted so bad it bowed like a banana. I go for a ride with him one day and he's holding on to one side of the steering wheel with both hands and a death grip. He pulls in a gas station and raises the hood to put in a quart of oil...
At one point the front left shock tower mount had rusted through and had "fallen" back towards the firewall. My buddy took a bumper jack, wedged it against the firewall and "jacked" the tower back into place. Then welded it up...BUMPER JACK INCLUDED...and down the road he went.
The shit we used to do to get to the party...(he rigged it and I rode in it)
My buddy Mike and I borrowed his son's OT daily driver truck for a parts run years ago. Out on the road it died, so we pull over and pop the hood. Mike discovered his new pair of Vise Grips (that had turned up missing a few weeks earlier) holding one of the battery cables to the battery. His kid used those brand new pliers instead of a $1.50 (back then) battery terminal. I cannot recall any car that this kid owned that he did not jury rig or just out and out destroy.
leaded solder is still widely available, I buy it online all the time, i'm stockpiling it like gold, check a certain auction site,
I use to hate butt connectors with a passion, until I found the kind that come with heat shrink and "goo" on them already. I use to use them on semi trucks all the time, and alot of them were exposed the the elements, constantly. I never had a problem with them. Even if your crimp failed the heat shrink and goo would keep the connection together!
The ones I preferred were the "Wurth crimp/seal butt connectors"
Guess you haven't seen some of the aftermarket wiring kits? All the same colors out of the fuse block, but with names printed on each wire. Actually pretty cool for us partially color blind guys!
Ever work on a conversion van,there are only a couple different color or wires for all the lightts and other stuff the conversion company installed.
even factory wiring can drive you crazy wiring schematics wire colors don't match the wires on the car and GM have to be the easiest to follow have used soldered and crimped with the goo connection both work equally well, I like shrink tubing with goo in it seals well. the worst thing to find is an intermittent problem
When I worked at a Ford dealership, he fixed a late-model Mustang with square-head bolts holding the bumper supports on. It had been fixed after being stolen, and we were repairing it after a light front-ender. Tlak about too cheap to buy four correct bolts....costs less than $5...and using rusty crap off an old barn door. I'm not kidding! The guys at the shop said that's not even close to the wierdest thing they'd seen.
I always could tell when a commercial journeyman electrician had been there..... and it wasn't pretty! I am sure that is not the case for ALL of them, but for the vast majority, they seem to think they are GODs in the wiring department!
I have been reading stuff about lamp cords etc, wow...
For a car I care anything about, lamp cord wiring is OUT, so is the vinyl coated wire commonly available at parts stores, it is fire prone crap.
I use cross-link wire on virtually everything automotive. The insulation is much harder and not so flammable.
(the mfgs. use cross-link wire and so do I)
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