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PARTS, HEADLIGHTS, WIRING, LUCKY FIND


Sue Bell
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I bought my '89 TC from a used car dealer 7 or 8 years ago. I didn't have any idea what a Chrysler TC by Maserati was. It had no hard top and leaked like crazy, but I bought it anyway. I've learned a lot about my car since and have grown to enjoy it greatly. The soft top has become dry rotted and torn. I know I will never be able to restore it fully, but I am having fun fixing it up. The engine runs great, but has a vacuum leak that will be a pain to find, I am sure. I drive this car 8 miles one way to work and back 5 days a week since I bought it, and it's been reliable and cost effective, and certainly a conversation piece!

Someone called me last week and said there was a yellow TC at my local junkyard at LQK pick-your-part in Clearwater, FL, and that it had a hard top. My daughter and I went right away and were able to grab the hard top for $100, although one of the little side windows has been shattered (see pix) and the headliner is deadly moldy. We sprayed it with bleach cleaner and it's tolerable until I can get it replaced. The car is yellow with black interior and soft top. My car interior and top are tan, but we went back a few days later for the soft top (for $100 also!) because it was folded down and looked barely used. I also grabbed the power antenna, the passenger wiper arm and the door latch from the passenger side. The first time we were there I should have grabbed the padded console cover. It was gone when we went back. Most of the black interior is intact, including seats and trunk lining, and the engine seems pretty much there (sorry, can't tell you what size, but I think they have a pic on their website - LKQ). Most of the accessories are gone - gauges, headlights, console, radio, etc. Maybe someone is local and needs parts. The junkyard is really quite a fun place!! I may be able to sell the glass window out of my ripped soft top if someone is interested.

A few months ago, my headlights started coming on only randomly when I pull the light switch. The parking lights always come on, and the brake lights and turn signals seem to work ok. Lately the headlights only come on after the car has been driven 10 or 20 minutes, kinda like something is having to warm up before they pop on. The connectors at the headlights and under the dash seem intact. Would anyone care to hazard a guess as to what is going on?

Also, various things don't work, and I assume it's due to wiring. The radio just fizzled out a couple of months ago, not a big loss. The passenger seat electrics have never worked, nor has the speedometer and odometer, or the trunk release. I am not sure whether the power antenna will work when I put it in. Mine used to, but it's stuck up now, and I haven't even listened for the motor. I was glad to see the post about the map lights, so I know where to look to get that working, perhaps. I am not sure I even want to get into wiring issues, but the headlights, at least, do have to work. I thought I saw someone post a wiring schematic in the last few years and I would love to have a copy of it, if it's available.

I expect I will have my car for another year or two, and I would love to play with it a bit more. I will keep you posted on my progress. This is basic transportation for me, but kind of a hobby as well since my hubby passed away. I am always interested in learning more about the car.

Thanks for all the help I've gotten from you guys! You are awesome!! :D

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Hey Sue---The headlight problem you have is not a wire problem. It's the headlight switch. It works with carbon plates that ware out over time. I've had to replace all of mine. They get so bad the current will jump between the switch and you will smell a burning smell. It is available at all Chrysler dealers as it was used in the Daytona,minivan, and most Mopar cars of the era. It can be a pain to replace because it is riveted in place. You have to drill out the rivets in a small place to get it out.

http://www.oreillyauto.com/site/c/search/Headlight+Switch/02006/C0039.oap?model=TC+Maserati&vi=1067172&year=1989&make=Chrysler

http://www.napaonline.com/Catalog/CatalogItemDetail.aspx/Headlight-Switch/_/R-ECHHL6548_0166862596

Edited by cowancom (see edit history)
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Thanks Cowancom, will do! I have ordered the part via your NAPA link and I can have my mechanic do it for me. A few years ago the whole cluster of wires behind the switch burned up and fused together, and he replaced that for me. It's nice to know what's causing the problem, and it makes sense now. I appreciate the info! :)

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