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wire connectors on ignition & light switch


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I have a half dozen ignition switch and light switches in a box with the hopes to make a couple that work.  I have replacement housings and handles which is the biggest issue to replace from pot metal growth.  The electrical backing plates are in various condition.  On the ignition side,  two backing plates have terminals 1 3 2 and the others just have terminals 1 and 3.   All of the wiring diagrams show:

1 is incoming 6 volts. 

3 is for the coil and Starter Generator F terminal. 

2 is to the Starter Generator A terminal.

 

The switch is 3 prongs, so that it powers 2 and 3 when touching 1.  I assume lack of a #2 terminal means that wires 2 and 3 are combined on the 3 terminal.    I have yet to see that on a wiring diagram.  Is that an issue if the A and the F terminals are connected all the time?   Has anyone else run into this issue?     Thank you,   Hugh

 

 IMG_7754.thumb.JPG.0ae2fe82a54a475f09d3465708d3bd9d.JPGIMG_7755.thumb.JPG.d8aba77042140dccedbcef45bd7a6a64.JPG1414519122_Wiring-1924-1925Buick-bestdiagram.thumb.jpg.5116be483f36633b0e6f7e875b2c5070.jpg

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Hugh, 

 Looking at the wiring diagram, if you wire 2 and 3 together,  I believe you would not be able to shut the engine off after started,  The ignition coil would be wired indirectly to the output of the generator.

 

Glenn Manes

Wheat Ridge CO

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That's really interesting Glenn.  I thought about that.   

 

I have 8 of these switches.  A couple are just the backing plates because the pot metal is completely gone.  3 of the backing plates have a #2 terminal, and 5 do not.  The reason I wanted to use the ones without the #2 terminal is because they are in a little better condition.  So I wonder when they stopped using the #2 terminal and how they wired the cars that used these backing plates.    

 

Maybe when they went to the separate starter generator units in 1926 they dropped the #2 terminal.  This is a wiring diagram from 1929 and it only shows 2 wires to the ignition switch.  Does anyone have a 1926 wiring diagram?     

Thank you,   Hugh

632151813_1929BuickWiringdiagram.thumb.JPG.89a636884f166df65bf800f876367ff9.JPG

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Hugh:

 Yes the switch for our cars with the 3 contacts are needed for Starter/Generator cars. I too have about 6 piles of Delco switch parts and pieces. I made up 2 new ones from the best pieces for the Standard and Master. The later 1926-1927 ones do not have the extra contacts. Of course those had nicer flatter micarta plates. Also the 1926 and later cars have the headlight dimmer switch on the steering column.

 This is what was originally in the Master when I got it.DSCF5768.thumb.JPG.9da8f11458c4c55586e51c5d92c498a8.JPG

 The forum is really being a pain about how the photos are uploading or I would have more. I will do another post. I have deleted the photos that would not post and still it comes up I am over the 9.77 MB limit.

 

Edited by dibarlaw
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Here is my Master switch in a new aluminum case from BOB'S. The casting was somewhat rough and did take a bit of machining and cleanup.

                                 DSCF5777.thumb.JPG.fe632aaa76bc47757fed789b7e107cef.JPG

DSCF5775.thumb.JPG.d3b13abf087ad30cecdb5220e30fb653.JPG The micarta plate was cleaned and flattened by warming it with a hair dryer and clamped flat. Then I filled the worn areas with super glue.

DSCF5779.thumb.JPG.ebbe54bca55e39578d3e817da764db7b.JPG

Fixture I made for removal of switch levers and reassembly.

 

 

 

Edited by dibarlaw (see edit history)
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 Thanks for the photos, repair tips, and the 1926 wiring diagram.   It looks like I need to clean up one of the backing plates with a #2 post.  I suppose a person could put a #2 post in a newer backing plate.  I have plenty of parts to choose from.   The old backing plates look to be Micarta, and the newer ones appear to be black plastic.  Larry,  I still love the effort someone went thru to modernize your old Master switch.  

Hugh

   

Edited by Hubert_25-25 (see edit history)
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7 hours ago, Glenn Manes said:

Hugh, 

 Looking at the wiring diagram, if you wire 2 and 3 together,  I believe you would not be able to shut the engine off after started,  The ignition coil would be wired indirectly to the output of the generator.

 

Glenn Manes

Wheat Ridge CO

 

My switch was created from parts by me, and I used a spare 27 back plate instead of the worn 24 one.

 

Gauges complete!

 

1169119820_11271624buickgauges(1).thumb.JPG.2dd777332fa183e3df879b2e51727f7b.JPG

 

1667353217_11271624buickgauges(4).thumb.JPG.b753f9de85b1211e7ce2dbd4c9196ac6.JPG

 

Now after this thread, nope!

 

I never considered the difference to be an issue, and certainly never thought what Glenn suggested would happen.  So glad this thread came along before I got to the point of starting my car!

 

20190307_160428.thumb.jpg.2ca7ed95390834133a4b87b528963e2f.jpg

 

Looks like I have more work to do, cleaning and reinstalling the 24 back plate.

 

Thanks to Hugh and Glenn!

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Hugh

 

I have to clean the contacts on that thermal breaker switch every few years.  When it  has poor contact, everything suffers.

 

I also installed a modern maxi fuse for the whole switch input since that 1920's breaker technology was not much to talk about.

 

Brian

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1 hour ago, 27donb said:

 

My switch was created from parts by me, and I used a spare 27 back plate instead of the worn 24 one.

 

Gauges complete!

 

1169119820_11271624buickgauges(1).thumb.JPG.2dd777332fa183e3df879b2e51727f7b.JPG

 

1667353217_11271624buickgauges(4).thumb.JPG.b753f9de85b1211e7ce2dbd4c9196ac6.JPG

 

Now after this thread, nope!

 

I never considered the difference to be an issue, and certainly never thought what Glenn suggested would happen.  So glad this thread came along before I got to the point of starting my car!

 

20190307_160428.thumb.jpg.2ca7ed95390834133a4b87b528963e2f.jpg

 

Looks like I have more work to do, cleaning and reinstalling the 24 back plate.

 

Thanks to Hugh and Glenn!

 

Mane I can’t even get the damn lights/ignition switch out of my dash!!!

 

tips guys I need tips on how the hell to get it out, I removed the two screens holding the “U” shaped bracket and the bracket, I have tapped on the back side of the housing carcass but no go, it won’t budge!

 

my headlight switch is frozen in the off position and my buddy snapped off the switch lever for it so it needs to come out I guess to rebuild it!!

 

how do I also remove the switch levers off the switch housing?

 

and one last question, there is a “ground” tab it seems you can reach under and push on and ground it out..... what does that do?

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Don, 

     Your switches and gauges really look nice.  So you are in the same boat as I am in needing to clean up the backing plate with corroded screw terminals.  Once the plate is removed, you could lay it with the prongs down in a shallow dish of vinegar, and that will dissolve the rust.  You have to keep an eye on the part because the interface between the vinegar and atmosphere may be an issue.  I may even try this using evaporust.  Once the rust is gone, you can use a home plater, but then you need to wire all the terminals together before plating.  I may try just using a soldering iron to tin each prong as protection against humidity and future rust.   

 

Brian, 

     Thanks for the comment on keeping the breaker clean and installing a fuse.   Power comes in to this Master switch on the #1 terminal.  It is a 12" wire from the ammeter.   I did upgrade this from a 14 gauge wire to a 12 gauge wire, along with the ammeter wire from the battery post on the starter.  I also wanted to install a fuse here, as what is outside the fused system is the coil and the horn.  It would be nice to install an auto reset fuse in series between the ammeter and the Master switch.  I could mount it on the back of the switch holder bracket.  Any thoughts on the amperage I should buy?  I could replace the existing breaker with one of these as well.  The switch would start to look like Larry's Frankenstein switch, but maybe more reliable. 

 

Also note that the screws in these master switches are #10-30 (The current standard is #10-32).     

Hugh

1083950092_autoresetfuse.thumb.JPG.6e9237b0314b6d1fbc90305930b371dd.JPG

 

Edited by Hubert_25-25 (see edit history)
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19 hours ago, Crazyfamily said:

I know I ask ALOT of questions gentlemen but I’m just tying to learn as much as I can and be a sponge!

 

what does this do?

79E051B5-0303-43B3-8705-CCFBE877124A.jpeg

 

There is a third function. You can push on it and it lights the dash light while held down. 

 

And Hugh is right, when you turn it on by turning it you tend to forget and leave it on so the ‘push to see ‘ feature is nice and what I use to glance at the gauges at night. 

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Addressing Crazyfamily's difficulty removing the switch body: doesn't the Standard switch drop into the panel from the front ?

If so, the switch casting has swelled similar to the center casting in the photo below, so now the rear portion of the casting is larger than the hole it needs to pass thru.  The casting on the right swelled and cracked completely thru. The left casting shows what happens when somebody used a punch and hammer to knock a stuck switch lever out from the back side- game over.   

I suggest first carefully disassembling the micarta plate from behind and catch all the parts that fall out.  Use a caliper to get a measurement of the casting diameter to figure out how badly it has swollen, and then get a strip of emery cloth and start sanding the protruding housing around its circumference. It might be swollen a little bit, and finally loosen up after some sanding.  If it appears to be crumbling into pieces and can't be saved, then use pliers to break off bits of the housing until it lets go.  Buy a new casting and use the salvaged parts.

Kevin

 

housijgs.jpg

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Ok to break it, but be careful where you break it.  If this assembly is stuck in the dash.

1) Remove the 2 long bolts and the 3 screws first. 

2)  remove the micarta/plastic plate on the back so that it does not get damaged.

Be sure you only break the sides and do not bend or break the face plate of the housing.  You can reuse the glass if you do not break it and save $100.

There is some felt behind the paper face that will protect the glass - some.   The order is housing/felt/paper/glass

 

- there are 4 nickel plated tabs that hold the big round face bezel.  Do not over bend them when trying to remove them.  Only bend them enough to get the bezel off.  

 1341032488_2017-02-0200_31_44.thumb.jpg.8b43feadd27c594fd092c61a66e7beee.jpg

 

 

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I bought a very nice spare Standard switch at Hershey one year. The switches were stiff but they still turned. Several weeks later when I went to work on it they were now locked up tight. So I had to relief drill them out like all the other switches I tried to salvage parts from. That is why I made up the wood backing block. To support the bezel and glass face. The pot metal is a real trial to drill because of the poor consistency of the mix. One spot is soft as butter another is hard as glass. Another reason of why the material grew and distorted over the years.

DSCF5705.thumb.JPG.63c9478313613fe011c6c6a63fc878af.JPG  DSCF5701.thumb.JPG.d102c6ece8af447afe2e0e701983d738.JPG

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Like many of you, I rebuilt my switch also.  Mine had frozen snapped off levers.

 

New levers from Bob's and then a bunch of hand fitting.  Seemed everything had grown and needed to be drilled or filed.  Nothing too complicated.  I fussed with it for weeks one Winter with an old metal TV tray in my lap in front of the TV with the wife.  I was like the little old watch maker.

 

As I mentioned above.  The thermal breaker switch contacts on the back can get dirty and then everything gets lowered voltage.  Keep that clean.  Add a real fuse somewhere too for piece of mind.

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17 hours ago, Hubert_25-25 said:

Ok to break it, but be careful where you break it.  If this assembly is stuck in the dash.

1) Remove the 2 long bolts and the 3 screws first. 

2)  remove the micarta/plastic plate on the back so that it does not get damaged.

Be sure you only break the sides and do not bend or break the face plate of the housing.  You can reuse the glass if you do not break it and save $100.

There is some felt behind the paper face that will protect the glass - some.   The order is housing/felt/paper/glass

 

- there are 4 nickel plated tabs that hold the big round face bezel.  Do not over bend them when trying to remove them.  Only bend them enough to get the bezel off.  

 1341032488_2017-02-0200_31_44.thumb.jpg.8b43feadd27c594fd092c61a66e7beee.jpg

 

 

 

 

As as always it feels great to be welcomed here and to be able to have gentlemen like yourselves to get good quality info and advice from!!!

 

i am trying to learn as much as I can and I know I ask A LOT of questions so I appreciate the help!!!

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So if I remove the two nuts, u shaped bracket, and the two long all thread pieces then can I remove the back plate of the switch with all the wires still attached to it or do I have to remove the wires first label them and then remove the innerts of the switch?

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11 hours ago, dibarlaw said:

I bought a very nice spare Standard switch at Hershey one year. The switches were stiff but they still turned. Several weeks later when I went to work on it they were now locked up tight. So I had to relief drill them out like all the other switches I tried to salvage parts from. That is why I made up the wood backing block. To support the bezel and glass face. The pot metal is a real trial to drill because of the poor consistency of the mix. One spot is soft as butter another is hard as glass. Another reason of why the material grew and distorted over the years.

DSCF5705.thumb.JPG.63c9478313613fe011c6c6a63fc878af.JPG  DSCF5701.thumb.JPG.d102c6ece8af447afe2e0e701983d738.JPG

 

 

I think from your pic pic above it answered my last posted question!!

 

Also I had asked before but didn’t see anyone reference it, on the bottom back side of the switch housing there looks to be a metal tab that can be used to ground out something???

 

what is it or what does it do??

 

587A1022-FD16-4261-AD01-4539C5983317.jpeg

Edited by Crazyfamily (see edit history)
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William, 

        If you look at the wiring diagram, that is the circuit breaker.  It is an electromagnet.  Too much current and it lifts the pin that is within the coil.  The lifting of the pin opens the contacts and breaks the circuit.  The tab is the  contact points, and they should be clean.   Hugh

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On 3/8/2019 at 10:10 AM, McCargar said:

Hugh if worst comes to worst you can always add a 2 pole single throw 6v relay into the circuit which will act as the second pole.

Wayne

Wayne, 

     I keep thinking about this comment that you made.  They just did everything mechanically back then.  They were on a steep learning curve with starting to do things electrically.  I am actually impressed that they made the circuit breaker on the back side of the ignition switch.  Easy to make a circuit breaker into a relay, but no relays in the car.   Hugh

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On 3/10/2019 at 9:02 PM, Crazyfamily said:

 

 

I think from your pic pic above it answered my last posted question!!

 

Also I had asked before but didn’t see anyone reference it, on the bottom back side of the switch housing there looks to be a metal tab that can be used to ground out something???

 

what is it or what does it do??

 

587A1022-FD16-4261-AD01-4539C5983317.jpeg

 

That is the breaker switch. When it sees high load it opens. The contacts under that arm need to stay clean.  The little spring is important too.  

 

I don’t trust it a bit and put a real in-line fuse upstream of it. 

Edited by Brian_Heil (see edit history)
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Not to high jack the post but only because you all know I’ve been struggling w this switch and it’s on topic!

 

i wasn’t able to remove the switch housing but I was remove the wiring plate from the back of the switch and the “tap” the broken and frozen light switch out from the back!

 

does anyone have a blow up or assembly guide for the switch?  I tried to keep each component in order it was removed however murphy’s Law I took my 100 LB chocolate lab and of course he stepped right on the pieces and then scattered everywhere!!!!!!

 

any guidance is appreciated!  The ball bearing and spring even came out!

 

Also since my gauges and switches have plenty of Patina at this point, I need a replacement headlight switch lever but obviously a new one will look way out of place!

 

anyone have a good used one with patina on it?  Of not any advice on replacing one that looks old?

Edited by Crazyfamily (see edit history)
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William, 

    I am currently going thru my switches.  I have rebuilt several of the switch lever sections, so this should help you.  More to come on rebuilding and restoring the terminal backing plate.   I do have a switch unit that I may part with, and maybe an old lever arm.  We can PM regarding what I have.  If you follow this procedure, it should help you get the switch back to working like it it is supposed to, as I wrote it so you could follow the orientation of the internal parts for assembly if all the parts were loose.  Basically page 3 is what you need.  Your best long term approach is to purchase 2 new switch levers and a new housing and build the switch up from your remaining parts.

Hugh 

1557740265_IgnitionandLighSwitch1.thumb.JPG.a37239d41805ec21f8ec68792ff81573.JPG747331343_IgnitionandLighSwitch2.thumb.JPG.7894fa259de2fa8b159267513a428a8a.JPG1807940825_IgnitionandLighSwitch3.thumb.JPG.e0d9420eed84edf43750dbb7f4125349.JPG

356231337_IgnitionandLighSwitch4.thumb.JPG.b9d1f5e6306ab0719b06c3c06f1d6cbb.JPG1365138632_IgnitionandLighSwitch5.thumb.JPG.634b7a05ff85f731ce21c7a66a8e4d2e.JPG

Edited by Hubert_25-25 (see edit history)
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Fantastic info Hugh and exactly what I was looking for!!

 

i really do want to remove all the gauges and the switch housing and refurbish all of them, including new nickle the bezels!  

 

Next year I am planning on a new interior so my plan is to do the dash and gauges/switch housing at that time.  

 

Yes please Message me about lever.  As always sharing your knowledge and experience is greatly appreciated Sir!

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William, 

    There are 2 tabs on the back of each lever that hold the wavy plate in position when the lever is turned.  I went to remove one of these older levers and one of the tabs broke off, so this extra lever I have is useless, although at least the lever arm is not snapped off.  The bigger issue is that both the old lever OD is growing bigger, and the ID of the hole in the housing is growing smaller.  Once your old lever is removed, you can wrap some emery cloth around a bolt and make the hole in the housing a little bigger.  Bob's Automobilia sells handles for $18 each.   Be sure to grease the hole before assembly.  You can buy new handles and get the switch operational if the housing is not too overgrown.  Next year when you decide to rebuild the housing, you can use the levers in the new housing.  Check the operation of the levers each month as they could start to get tight and you would want to remove them before it is too late.

Hugh     

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Here is an interesting array of Standard switch faces in my collection.

1) The first is what was in my car.  It just says Delco on the paper under the glass. 

2) The second, and I have seen this in another 1925 model.  It also just says Delco.   In addition, it has the detents for the lights labeled.  On the back it also has terminal number 2.  As you recall from the 1st posting, terminal #2 is for the cars with combination starter generators, so Pre 1926 or maybe a carry over into 1926 and the #2 terminal was not used.

3) The third was labeled 1927 Buick in paint pen on the side of the housing.  This now says Delco-Remy.  They took the detent labels off.  Maybe too much of a distraction for the day, like the pop up message that says "Keep your eyes on the road".  

    IMG_7812.thumb.JPG.ef80a86a25f29ab9dd43fdf7f4098758.JPGIMG_7814.thumb.JPG.bca9aba6338c76ffa7662f1f73536372.JPGIMG_7816.thumb.JPG.6cf510e895826f76d2231a3acbf7f12f.JPG

Edited by Hubert_25-25 (see edit history)
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Great idea Hugh, I’ll get two new levers ordered today, and if someone does have an old

lever they’d part with that’s in good shape I’d like to buy one as well.

 

ill be driving the car, hopefully, more than once a month and will make a point to keep checking the operation of the switches!

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2 hours ago, Hubert_25-25 said:

Here is an interesting array of Standard switch faces in my collection.

1) The first is what was in my car.  It just says Delco on the paper under the glass. 

2) The second, and I have seen this in another 1925 model.  It also just says Delco.   In addition, it has the detents for the lights labeled.  On the back it also has terminal number 2.  As you recall from the 1st posting, terminal #2 is for the cars with combination starter generators, so Pre 1926 or maybe a carry over into 1926 and the #2 terminal was not used.

3) The third was labeled 1927 Buick in paint pen on the side of the housing.  This now says Delco-Remy.  They took the detent labels off.  Maybe too much of a distraction for the day, like the pop up message that says "Keep your eyes on the road".  

    IMG_7812.thumb.JPG.ef80a86a25f29ab9dd43fdf7f4098758.JPGIMG_7814.thumb.JPG.bca9aba6338c76ffa7662f1f73536372.JPGIMG_7816.thumb.JPG.6cf510e895826f76d2231a3acbf7f12f.JPG

 

I think the Master models got the latest stuff every year, and the Standard models may have gotten some of last years Master features. 

 

I realize gauge bezel shape didn't change Master (ornate) to Standard (round / oval) but other features seemed to be carry overs to next year's small series. 

 

The switch with the labels seems like a pre 24 thing, or maybe for 1924 4 cylinder models.  I have not seen 1924 6 cylinder pictures or cars with the positions marked like that.  These switches are so prone to pot metal swelling, change out may have been frequent throughout a cars life.  Many a Buick dash have I seen with mismatched gauges, even on expensive full restorations. 

 

The dim and head labels confirm, pre 26 and the advent of the dimmer switch on the steering wheel. 

 

The throttle and spark control from 1923 was carried over to 1924...on the 4 cylinder models.  The 6 cylinder models got the new design small levers that stayed until 1927.

 

The transmission in my 24-45 has a 4 bolt cover, similar to the cover on my 27-25 Standard.  The 27 Master has a 6 bolt cover.  24 and 27 transmissions and clutches are completely different but my point being, this year's Master or 6 cylinder feature became next years Standard or small 6 feature, in some cases, and the big wheelbase got the latest design. 

 

The dash mounted engine coolant temp and fuel gauge were both standard for 1927, eliminating the need for a motometer and replacing it with the Goddess radiator cap.  Imagine my disappointment when I purchased my 27 STANDARD sport touring, only to find last years fuel gauge still on the tank, and no dash temp gauge.  But, sport models also got the Goddess cap, so it's my understanding that motometer and Goddess caps were both provided.  The meter to use when driving, and the Goddess cap to use....?  Well, maybe Buick didn't plan that one too well. 

 

What is right and correct is only from my experience and is only my opinion.  I yield to owners of original unrestored cars for more clarity on the subject. 

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Any recommendations for carb rebuild kit, I really only need the gasket between the body and the bowl I believe.....besides ordering the felt that we discussed for both the metering pin and using the left over felt for the pedals, of which I didn’t even realize that there was any there to begin with..... mine is all but worn away to nothing!!! Man if I were to drove when it’s cold out that would let a lot of air in!!!!

 

not a bad thing I guess if there would be some way to cool the interior, it’s going to be extremely hot in the passenger compartment during hot days of Summer that’s for sure!!!  I do have a small fan that mounts to the steering column that the prev owner game me with the spare parts as well!  Hopefully that helps.

 

also recommendations on where to wire the Trippe driving lights up to?  Just hide a switch somewhere and fused wire right to battery with a relay and relay harness?  The prev owner never wired them up and I’d like to, right now there is a two foot long lead coming off of the lights and seems to be the period correct stainless spiral wrap around the leads coming off them??

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On 3/8/2019 at 9:02 AM, 27donb said:

 

My switch was created from parts by me, and I used a spare 27 back plate instead of the worn 24 one.

 

Gauges complete!

 

1169119820_11271624buickgauges(1).thumb.JPG.2dd777332fa183e3df879b2e51727f7b.JPG

 

1667353217_11271624buickgauges(4).thumb.JPG.b753f9de85b1211e7ce2dbd4c9196ac6.JPG

 

Now after this thread, nope!

 

I never considered the difference to be an issue, and certainly never thought what Glenn suggested would happen.  So glad this thread came along before I got to the point of starting my car!

 

20190307_160428.thumb.jpg.2ca7ed95390834133a4b87b528963e2f.jpg

 

Looks like I have more work to do, cleaning and reinstalling the 24 back plate.

 

Thanks to Hugh and Glenn!

Don,  You could always use your 27  backing plate in the 24 and install an on/off switch behind the dash  to isolate the coil from the generator.

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Like Ron said, or like Wayne said - you could also mount a 6 volt relay onto the backside of the ignition switch bracket.  Terminal 3 goes to the coil and Starter Generator F terminal.  On the coil relay, connect one side to post 3 and the other to ground.  For the contact side (Normally open) connect one side to terminal 3 and the other to Starter generator A terminal.  

This would make the modern switch operate like the older switch "automagically".  

 

 

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Any recommendations for carb rebuild kit, I really only need the gasket between the body and the bowl I believe.....besides ordering the felt that we discussed for both the metering pin and using the left over felt for the pedals, of which I didn’t even realize that there was any there to begin with..... mine is all but worn away to nothing!!! Man if I were to drove when it’s cold out that would let a lot of air in!!!!

 

not a bad thing I guess if there would be some way to cool the interior, it’s going to be extremely hot in the passenger compartment during hot days of Summer that’s for sure!!!  I do have a small fan that mounts to the steering column that the prev owner game me with the spare parts as well!  Hopefully that helps.

 

also recommendations on where to wire the Trippe driving lights up to?  Just hide a switch somewhere and fused wire right to battery with a relay and relay harness?  The prev owner never wired them up and I’d like to, right now there is a two foot long lead coming off of the lights and seems to be the period correct stainless spiral wrap around the leads coming off them??

 

 

^^^^

who replanted these??  I am considering trying some home plating kits I’ve seen, 

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