rodneybeauchamp

Help with LED turn signals on ‘38 Buick

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So, I thought all my problems were solved with my turn signal lamps on my ‘38 by using LED park/turn signal globes up front and standard globes at the rear in a seperate lamp. (Not though the brake lamps ) These are 6volt double contact LEDs and work fine when tested on the battery.

 

What happens when they switch on either left or right is that both front turn signals flash along with the rear of that side.

 

It seems that the power is feeding back via the common earth and powering the other globe. My test light shows this too!

 

Currently the only way I can get it to work as it should is when I disconnect the park light side of the wiring on one or both lamps.

 

When fitted with standard incandescent bulbs they work fine except they generate too much heat for my liking. Flash rate is fine with a 6V Tridon Electronic flasher ( not an LED type) with either bulb combination.

 

I have yet to wire up the headlamp switch as yet, hoping that I could get these turn signals tested first.

 

Any thoughts how I can get this working as it should?


 

 

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While not familiar with your hardware you added, LED's use almost no power(amps) so its possible your getting feedback through the flasher? My guess is a regular flasher won't work unless you add additional load to the circuit.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)

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Do more research on using LED bulbs. There are special flashers that operate at the same cadence (flash rate) regardless of the amount of current being supplied to the bulbs. Some of the LED bulb suppliers also offer these special relays.

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Personally, I use the LEDs in the rear lamps which gives me better brake lights and I use regular bulbs in the front. Are you using a manufactured wiring harness? If not, is it possible there is a problem in your wiring circuit? If for instance you had the ground and power feed wires swapped on one side, I am thinking you might get a similar result. Using two filament bulbs and sockets in the original housings, I have no problem with the turn signals on either my 1937 or 1938 Centurys.

 

Also, what type of turn signal switch are you using? I know that Rhode Island Wiring has a couple of different turn signal switches that they sell, and a couple of different wiring configurations available for them. 

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There isn't enough current to go through your "iffy" ground.

Your week demand is looking for a ground thru the park lite circuit.

I would experiment with adding a better temporary ground.

I don't mean just the socket. I have seen where the fender for instance doesn't make a good enough connection to the rest of the body, Or the body not making enough contact with the chassis. Grill mounted lights do this same thing if the grill doesn't make good enough contact with the rest of the car. (I hope you get my gist by now)

Bulb to socket, socket to grill, grill to fender, fender to body, body to chassis, chassis to battery etc.

When the led bulb uses very little electricity you have to have solid grounds throughout.

Since they work with your incandescent bulbs and the fact that they make heat that makes you uncomfortable confirms all of this, in my mind anyway.

Edited by JACK M (see edit history)
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Thanks for all your suggestions. The flasher does not seem to be the problem as the flash rate is acceptable, the bulb/LED combination drawing enough load to make it work. It is an electronic style so it is designed for variable loads.

 

All the wiring to the new sockets is all new that I have made, with soldered connections, 5mm wire and seperate ground wires to each socket that terminate on a body bolt. So hoping that wiring is not the issue. The rear lamps have the same new wiring again with grounds from socket to body bolts.

 

However, what I will do is recheck what I have done to eliminate wiring and ground issues.

 

My other thought is to install diodes in the ground return wires, and perhaps in the park lamp power feeds.

 

Will get back. 🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔

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Adding diodes will not help.  Check you are getting full voltage to the light sockets and check grounds, especially where and how the grounds are to the body. Also how the flasher portion is grounded to the body. Assume nothing. Run separate wire(s) as a diagnostic means to isolate the culprit. Let us know how you corrected the problem.

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Some one once told me that 99% of all electrical problems are 'groundless'.

Edited by JACK M (see edit history)
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1 minute ago, JACK M said:

Some one once told me that 99% of all electrical problems are 'groundless'.

With electronic circuitry it can be due to too many grounds, leading to an earth loop and spikes in the data.

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Ha,That must be where the other 1% went.  :P

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One time during a storm all of the lights in my dealership started blinking and then got very bright.

The ground had blown loose at the transformer is what the PGE told me.

They had to replace all of my ballasts, some bulbs, my computer (a very early one), fax machine, along with most all of my other office equipment.

I realize this is not related to turn signals, just sharing what was kind of a scary moment that night.

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Ok, problem tracked. 

 

I think that the LEDs park and turn circuits are wired together so that the park set of LEDs light, then when the turn signal is used more LEDs in the same circuit light.

 

I set up a test circuit away from the car with two bulb holders. Both park lamp power wires joined together ( as per the Buick wiring) and both ground wires together ( as it would be grounded to body and chassis).

 

Touch the RHS flasher wire to +ve and the RHS bulb is bright (turn light) and the LHS is dull ( park light), touch LHS flasher to +ve and LHS bulb is bright and RHS bulb is dull ( park light)

 

To work properly in any car or on test, park and turn signal need to have seperate circuits. Pity because these LEDs are super bright and run cool.

 

Problem diagnosed, yet to be solved 🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔🤔

 

Rodney

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I am not sure what LED bulbs you are using. Here is some information on the bulbs for the rear brake/turn signaals that I am using without any trouble. You could use their clear ones for the front. I am still using incandescent ones in the front as they seeem plenty bright on my car.

 

Their website is a bit confusing since I was looking for a replacement for an 1154 bulb.  The 1154 bulbs and 1157 bulb use the same base. They just call them all 1157's on their website. You select the 1157 and then check the blocks for 6 volt, red, and 15 degree beam angle and what they send works on 6 volts in place of an 1154 bulb for tail/brake lights. It is part number 1157-x19-xV-CAR. 

 

I think this link will take you to it: https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/tail-brake-turn/1157-led-bulb-dual-function-19-led-forward-firing-cluster-bay15d-retrofit-car-classic-car-bulbs/508/

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11 hours ago, rodneybeauchamp said:

Problem diagnosed, yet to be solved.

 

Solve it by replacing those POS LEDs. ;) 

Edited by KongaMan (see edit history)
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On 2/1/2019 at 9:09 AM, MCHinson said:

I am not sure what LED bulbs you are using. Here is some information on the bulbs for the rear brake/turn signaals that I am using without any trouble. You could use their clear ones for the front. I am still using incandescent ones in the front as they seeem plenty bright on my car.

 

Their website is a bit confusing since I was looking for a replacement for an 1154 bulb.  The 1154 bulbs and 1157 bulb use the same base. They just call them all 1157's on their website. You select the 1157 and then check the blocks for 6 volt, red, and 15 degree beam angle and what they send works on 6 volts in place of an 1154 bulb for tail/brake lights. It is part number 1157-x19-xV-CAR. 

 

I think this link will take you to it: https://www.superbrightleds.com/moreinfo/tail-brake-turn/1157-led-bulb-dual-function-19-led-forward-firing-cluster-bay15d-retrofit-car-classic-car-bulbs/508/

The 1154 and 1157 have the same size base but will not interchange because the 1157 has staggered"tits" and will only fit one way, whereas the 1154 can be installed :upside down.

Very few car brands used the 1154 , before going  to the 1157. 

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9 hours ago, Willie Wurke said:

The 1154 and 1157 have the same size base but will not interchange because the 1157 has staggered"tits" and will only fit one way, whereas the 1154 can be installed :upside down.

Very few car brands used the 1154 , before going  to the 1157. 

 

While that may very well be correct, what they call a 6 volt 1157 fits into the original rear sockets on a 1937 Buick without any problem.  

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Well, problem solved. Simple replacement of the LEDs with a pair from SuperBright results in the turn signals working as they should, flashing one side only at one time.

 

Park lamps also working as they should. 

 

Many thanks for all the help and suggestions.

happy Rodney 😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀😀

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On 2/9/2019 at 11:05 PM, Willie Wurke said:

The 1154 and 1157 have the same size base but will not interchange because the 1157 has staggered"tits" and will only fit one way, whereas the 1154 can be installed :upside down.

Very few car brands used the 1154 , before going  to the 1157. 

Not to argue with you but in the interest of making it clear to future readers of this discussion, I think you have mistaken the 1156 bulb with 1154. My limited research shows that the 1154 bulb has offset pins identical to 1157 bulbs. The 1156 has non-offset pins. I don't recall too many uses for 1156 bulbs but Buicks of this era seem to have plenty of 1154 6 volt bulbs.  

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Here is the 1154 bulb in all its technical glory.

 

The #1156 bulb is a single filament  bulb with opposite pins = BA15S base. There was also a BA15D base used on the #1156DC. These are 12 V bulbs, 2.1 A = 26.88 W.

 

The #1157 had a BAY15D base (the Y signifies offset pins), was a double filament bulb in 12.8/14 Volts, 2.1/0.59 A = 26.88/8.66 W.

Edited by Spinneyhill (see edit history)
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I have a 1947 Lincoln Continental which has weak turn signals.  I have been advised to replace the flasher unit.  My question is why are there three prongs on one end of the flasher.  The car only has two wires going to the current flasher.  Is this a ground?  Or does it need that?  The prongs are labeled "L" "P" "X".  What do these initials stand for?

Thank you

Don

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One of the prongs is for an indicator light.

I may have a set of instructions for an aftermarket TS switch kit around here somewhere.

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Even if the battery is fully charged, sometimes it is only a battery cable that is too small in diameter for a 6-volt system.  Often a battery cable is purchased at the local parts store in the correct length, but not thick enough.  The correct size battery cable if you have a 6-volt system is about the thickness of your thumb.   Also remove all battery cable connections and tighten  them securely after cleaning regardless of the cable size.  A bad or weak ground can also cause similar problems.

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The third pin on the flasher is used when there is only one indicator light inside the car to tell you the turn signals are on.

 

When there are 2 indicator lights inside the car (right and left), they can just be connected to the front signal lights, and the flasher third pin is not really needed.

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