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Old 05/02/2009, 09:54 AM   #1
robert campbell
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Darn Blinkers again

Ok, removed the blinker hood to put on my cowl hood to cover the blower.

As soon as I got it on the road the right blinker indicator light comes on and fades off and then stays on all the time the headlight switch is either in the park or headlight setting. Turn the switch off and every thing works fine.

Just put in a new turn signal switch about 2 years ago.

I am going to take Neil's advise and go for the LED bulbs that draw less current. We have threaded about this before and the possible existance of heavy duty switches.

Anyway, off to check every bulb and the grounds first. Love pulling the front ones with my fat fingers. Tried the rubber hose for removal and not much joy. By the time i get done the whole front end of the car is soaked in wd-40! Things are a bit slippery and Rob is cussing under his breath. Again.

Thoughts?

Rob
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Old 05/02/2009, 04:24 PM   #2
rvrtrash
 
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My first guess would be a bad bulb or corroded socket/bad ground. The park and turn signal elements share a common ground (the body of the bulb), and if the ground is bad or the bulb shorted, the current will feed through the other element and search for another ground path. I don't think the hood has anything to do with it, but you could always unplug the socket at the firewall to eliminate it as a possibility.

Steve

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Old 05/02/2009, 05:10 PM   #3
robert campbell
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Steve,
Can you come over and help me pull the front bulb's??

I hate it!!

Rob
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Old 05/02/2009, 07:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robert campbell View Post
Steve,
Can you come over and help me pull the front bulb's??

I hate it!!

Rob
I'd be happy to, but I'm out of town again, the opposite direction. I'm out of town next weekend as well, but something might be able to be arranged on Memorial weekend.

Steve

PS. I've only been to the fall Monroe swap meet. Is the spring one any good? Maybe I'll hit that up and a bunch of us can meet up (no pun intended).

Steve

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Old 05/02/2009, 08:28 PM   #5
robert campbell
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Steve,
I have been to both swap meets. About the same. Like any if you find that special treasure....

I don't know the date?

Rob
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Old 05/02/2009, 11:42 PM   #6
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It's scheduled for May 16-17th. I'll be there. It's my wedding anniversary weekend, so I'll have to sneak out early. Probably hit it early Sat.

Bret
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Old 05/11/2009, 01:41 PM   #7
robert campbell
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Steve/Neil,
Got to the bottom of the problem. Some dumb ass left off a ground wire to the right blinker when he had the front of the radiator support cleared to install new radiator, tranny cooler/lines, and electric fan paraphernalia. Don’t know the guy personally, but his initials are Robert N. Campbell……

Tightened down ground and bingo!! All fixed!

Now another observation. When you step on the brakes even at an idle, you have all six taillights lit. It has very little affect on my “volt” gauge. But if you introduce the blinker to the mix it makes to volt gauge fluctuate 2 to 3 volts. Even with your foot off the brake disengaging 3 bulbs! Now we know that a blinker light is just a brake light filament interrupted. Certainly the blinker also adds the front bulb.

Only thing I can assume is that the blinker forces the current through the blinker switch which adds to the resistance (Rob over his head). The brake light must have a more “direct” route for the current??

I am going to LED lights to see if that helps.

Thoughts?

Rob
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Old 05/11/2009, 05:49 PM   #8
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If you have more resistance, there would be less current flow and the gauge would move less. A larger drain, like a short, would cause the gauge to move toward discharge. I would go back and look at your front turn signals again, check for chafed wires, etc. Do the bulbs look normal when they flash? Does it do the same thing for both directions? You may also want to check the turn signal harness for bare spots. Does it make a difference if you unplug the hood harness? The Ford ammeters from that era don't move much normally, so to see that much change, you probably have a huge current draw somewhere.

Steve

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Steve/Neil,
Got to the bottom of the problem. Some dumb ass left off a ground wire to the right blinker when he had the front of the radiator support cleared to install new radiator, tranny cooler/lines, and electric fan paraphernalia. Don’t know the guy personally, but his initials are Robert N. Campbell……

Tightened down ground and bingo!! All fixed!

Now another observation. When you step on the brakes even at an idle, you have all six taillights lit. It has very little affect on my “volt” gauge. But if you introduce the blinker to the mix it makes to volt gauge fluctuate 2 to 3 volts. Even with your foot off the brake disengaging 3 bulbs! Now we know that a blinker light is just a brake light filament interrupted. Certainly the blinker also adds the front bulb.

Only thing I can assume is that the blinker forces the current through the blinker switch which adds to the resistance (Rob over his head). The brake light must have a more “direct” route for the current??

I am going to LED lights to see if that helps.

Thoughts?

Rob

The wannabe formerly known as an owner.
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Old 05/11/2009, 07:28 PM   #9
robert campbell
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Steve,
Hood harness is unplugged. Lights look the same in both directions. Volt gauge is an aftermarket "Autometer" gauge. Not an “amp” gauge, but a “volt” gauge.

Reacted the same way since 1989. With hood harness installed. Dash lights dim with the blinkers at night. Either direction. Replaced blinker switch in 1990 and again a couple years ago.

Has one wire alternator. No change again. Notice that one wire does not "excite" at lower RPM's as per other literature I have read.

Rob
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Old 05/11/2009, 08:35 PM   #10
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Well the extra info helps, but this is still a tough one without having it in front of me. You could always bring it over. FYI, both the brakes and turn signals go through the turn signal switch. At this point, I'd pull both front bulbs and test again. See if it does the same thing. Are the lights flashing real slow, medium/normal or fast? Where did you hook the volt gauge leads?

Steve

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Steve,
Hood harness is unplugged. Lights look the same in both directions. Volt gauge is an aftermarket "Autometer" gauge. Not an “amp” gauge, but a “volt” gauge.

Reacted the same way since 1989. With hood harness installed. Dash lights dim with the blinkers at night. Either direction. Replaced blinker switch in 1990 and again a couple years ago.

Has one wire alternator. No change again. Notice that one wire does not "excite" at lower RPM's as per other literature I have read.

Rob

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Old 05/12/2009, 01:00 PM   #11
robert campbell
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Flashing is normal. Rebuilt all the rear light sockets and soldered individual wire to each socket "casing" for a ground into the trunk area. I am nuts about good grounds. Have two ground straps on the engine to the body.

I will check later tonight to see where I ran the wire for the "volt" gauge.

The problem of the dash lights dimming at idle in conjunction with the blinker has always been there. And the more accessories you add, wipers, fan, fogs, rear window defroster just makes it worse. The blinkers do flash noticeably slower at idle.

Rob
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Old 05/12/2009, 02:47 PM   #12
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Bummer. I thought the advantage of an alternator was adequate output @ low RPM. I've converted older aircraft with the old 12V generators for that reason. I'm not familiar with the new 'one wire' alternators. Sure sounds like low voltage @ low RPM and/or low voltage regulation, at least part of the problem.
I use the larger #2 Battery cables (+ and -) instead of the normal #4 cables. Don't know if it really helps anything, but I feel better about it!
Just out of curiosity, I wonder what the alternator output is @ idle with no load, and then with a load (lights,etc), and then output @ 1,000 RPM, no load and loaded.

Are you going to make Steve & me come out there?

Neil
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Old 05/12/2009, 02:50 PM   #13
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Well dont forget that the blinker(flasher) itself draws some current. How much depends on the flasher but essentially it is a piece of spring steel heating up and pulling the switch away from the signal light. So the battery has to heat up that piece of steel. The fact that all these things are happening as the current is being switched is what causes your voltmeter to fluctuate. Mine does the same thing. The combination of old wires, more resistance and old ground connections often make these older cars dim both the headlights and the dash and the blinkers as compared to new. Nowadays everything uses a relay so that wire runs are minimized but back then you have a lot of wire to go thru running all these accessories. The resistance keeps getter more and more as it ages.
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