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What’s this lite for, who made it, what years?

1934 Terraplane

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I have seen that style of wire wrapping on a lot of salvaged electrical components. Back in those days there certain ways one had to hang harness, wind rope, and roll hose. That's the standard of wire wrapping from the time. They never went for the same degree of perfection on the old car parts..

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Make sure the wire you get is adequate gauge! Remember, in gauge, bigger numbers mean smaller wires. And higher voltage also means smaller wire can be used for similar amount of light (whatever measure you like, Watts, candle power, lumens, etc). So the smaller wire for a home lamp may not be adequate for a six volt lamp. Wiring for automotive six volt systems should be 12 gauge generally, although some lamps might be alright to use 14gauge for a single small lamp on short wires. For most antique automobile wiring on six volt systems, I prefer to use 10 gauge myself. It results in far fewer troublesome issues. Most reproduction cloth covered wires I have found available have been 14 gauge or smaller. For most antique automobile wiring with six volt systems (a few earlier cars like Dodge and Stearns did use 12 volt systems), 14 gauge will not work.


SSHHH! A dirty little secret. As I am somewhat anal about at least the appearance of era correctness, I WANT my wiring to be cloth covered! I can't seem to buy the size I need and demand (I have tried numerous times, followed a dozen leads given on forums like this one)? I make my own cloth covered wire myself. I go to a local surplus store, the old Army/Navy type stores. They sell parachute cords. Which are a synthetic woven tube filled with several nylon strings. They are available in a wide variety of colors, including nice standard reds blues blacks and yellows. They don't have marker or tracer colors added in, but most people don't notice that. And if I really wanted to, I could probably add those in ink myself? I get good multi strand copper wire with common plastic insulation. Figure the lengths I need, cut wire and parachute cords about a foot too long. Pull all the nylon strings out of the cords and slide (sounds easy doesn't it?) the wire inside. Actually, sliding the wire inside is a bit tricky. The cut end of the copper wires tend to catch on the inside of the cloth tube. They usually are a bit of a tight fit. Sometimes, a bit of tape wrapped around the end can help. Sometimes I put an epoxy "cap" on the end of the wire, and sometimes I use a match to heat the end of the insulation and my fingers to stretch and form an end ahead of the copper wires. Whatever seems to work. Once fed into place, I stretch the cloth tube tight, and use electrical tape to hold it in place. Then brush a heavy coat of shellac the entire length of the cloth.

A little care in trimming the ends, and they can look great!

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On 11/29/2020 at 1:03 AM, wayne sheldon said:

satisfied the rear view mirror requirement.

 Who's requirement?  Federally, the outside rear view mirror was not required until 1966.


Now if it was the only rear view mirror in the car...

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Califunny REQUIRES an outside rear-view mirror on the left side of the car regardless of the car's year of manufacture. They have for several decades now. Grandfather clause not recognized or nonexistent. Open wheel speedsters, 19-aught horseless carriages, no place to mount one? Doesn't matter. They will sometimes cite drivers of such cars. Many hobbyists (including me) do drive cars for thousands of miles without such mirrors, and, mostly, aren't bothered about it. But sometimes, for whatever personal or local political reasons, some officer will cite drivers for not having such mirrors.

Windshield wiper for the driver is another not grandfathered in Califunny rule. They also do sometimes cite drivers for not having a windshield wiper for the driver. A longtime friend years ago used to carry a clamp-on hand operated wiper in his model T speedster with a monocle windshield. A highway patrolman once cussed at him when he showed it to the officer. He did let him go without a citation however. That good friend eventually left Califunny. Owners of early horseless carriages that never did have a windshield have on occasions been cited for not having a wiper.

It has been awhile since I have heard much on the subject around here, but I haven't been driving any antiques for a few years either. A lot of hobbyists have never been bothered over these details. However quite a few have been. Most of my model T speedsters have been run without mirrors or windshields, and the one that did have a windshield, did not have a wiper. Most of the full bodied regular antique automobiles I have had, had both outside mirrors and a wiper. I have a genuine original era brass head with steel bracket mirror that I have been saving for many years that will go on my 1915 T runabout if I ever get it close to done. I had intended to use it on the 1916 T center-door sedan I restored over twenty years ago. But I couldn't come up with an acceptable modification to fit the original open car mirror bracket on a closed car. So I drove it for a couple years with no outside mirror. If and when I get the 1915 runabout on the road, the mirror is the only visible non-factory item I plan to have on the car.

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