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RHO
12-30-2005, 08:56 PM
I have a '55 President with Borg Warner auto tranny. Starting total rewire of the car. Have viewed several sources for the wiring diagrams including the service manual, etc. and all show the same wiring for the particular area I am currently reworking. From the starter solenoid on the firewall, there are the two big cables to the starter motor and the battery negative terminal. And the wiring diagram is consistent with the NUMBER of smaller wires I have on my solenoid, but not the destination and wire color.
10 gage Red wire seems to be consistent with going to the ammeter
#1 question: 10 gage Black wire I do not not know where it was connected on my car and all the wiring diagrams show it goes to an overdrive relay, but since this is the auto tranny, the OD relay does not exist. I need to know where this rather long (about 3-4 feet) black wire goes from the solenoid.
#2 question: the wiring diagram shows a red & white wire going to the ignition switch; why my wire (that appears original up into the taped harness)is yellow is unknown, but I assume this is indeed the wire to the ignition switch (looks like a 16 gage wire).
Thanks for the help. This car has a LONG way to go.

Roscomacaw
12-30-2005, 10:32 PM
The 55s stand alone as for as the start circuit goes. 51-2-3-4 cars either used a manually operated (foot) switch to send power to the starter or a starter solenoid that was energized by sending a ground to the little terminal of the solenoid.
For 1955, they went to the start function being part of the key switch. This necessitated a solenoid that was activated by a "hot" connection instead of a ground connection. And since '55 was the last year of 6volt systems, this make that 55 Starter solenoid a one-year application.
I'm confused as to whether you're describing the OLD wiring harness or a new one. If it's the old one, likely the red tracer has LONG since faded away and the once white wire has turned yellow with age and exposure to the oil vapors and heat of the engine compartment.[:o)]<-red 'n white.
'55 was also sort of a cross-over year as parts of the wiring were still the old cloth-covered type while some of it was the "new tech" plastic wire.[B)]
Now if it's a NEW harness, something's wrong. The only yellow wire in the car's wiring is the one that goes from the wiper switch to the wiper motor.:)<-yellow!
The 10ga black wire was only used for the Overdrive relay feed. It rightfully goes between the big hot terminal on the solenoid to the fused terminal on the OD relay. Since there was only ONE Main harness used for both standard shift & Automatic trans cars, the black wire may well have been incorporated into ALL the harnesses to accomodate O/D if need be. [8]<-Black (in this case 8ga - but you get the idea. [}:)]<-Me (being a prankster) Gotta have fun SOMEhow![:p]

Miscreant at large.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President 2-dr
1955 President State
1951 Champion Biz cpe
1963 Daytona project FS

RHO
12-30-2005, 11:02 PM
OK, perhaps that is it; the red/white cloth coating has deteriorated to reveal a yellow type wire. Indeed, the car contains both cloth and plastic wiring. I looked at some other wiring diagrams like '54 Hudson and '54 Kaiser and they show a black wire from the starter solenoid to the "B" terminal of the voltage regulator. This wire is just long enough to reach over to that point. The wiring is very badly decayed and practically non-existent in some places. The car will require all new wiring from the firewall out and quite a bit inside the car as well. Since this black wire had such a length to it along with a terminal on the end, I figured it must connect to something, but as you say, the only connection shown on the diagram is to the OD relay. Thanks.

RHO
12-31-2005, 08:59 PM
OK, have found a photo of the subject car from last March that shows two wires emerging from a small hole just above the windshield wiper motor. I see no such wires on my standard shift '55 Commander and in that hole on the Commander is a spring attached to the wiper motor. Any one else have the two wires or know what they may go to? Since the March timeframe with the car being moved around and the engine removed, those two wires have vanished.
Thanks.

BobPalma
12-31-2005, 10:40 PM
:) RHO: What you are dealing with is the auxillary Starter and Anti-Creep Wiring Circuits unique to 1955 V-8s with Automatic Drive.

I installed a Thoms reproduction wiring harness (a beautiful work of art in its own right!) in a 1955 President hardtop with Automatic Drive a couple years ago and have an excellent color diagram of the circuits and wires you question.

I'm sorry I cannot scan and post it, but if you'll post your name and home mailing address, I'll make a color photocopy of it and mail it to you immediately. It's exactly what you need, and will answer all your questions...and then some. :) Bob Palma

RHO
12-31-2005, 10:53 PM
Thanks Bob, I sent you an email.
I did remove the anti-creep device and wiring from underneath the car during the summer, but not getting back to the car for six months, I could not recall about the wiring and just did not take enough detail photos.

RHO

RHO
01-11-2006, 08:09 PM
Wiring schematic arrived in god shape, Bob. Thanks. The rewire of the car is ongoing and hopefully will see a live test within a week or two.

N8N
01-11-2006, 08:28 PM
Along the same lines, I have a '55 Commander that had a heart transplant at some point in time, so the anti-creep is all gone, except the valve is still hanging out on the frame. I also had no neutral safety. I "hacked" together some NSS wiring, but am curious how it would have been run stock. It appears that this wiring was part of the anti-creep harness. How did it tap into the stock wiring, as both ends of the "start" wire use ring terminals? I just used a small machine screw and nut and a big piece of heat shrink, but I'm sure that's not how the factory did it. (or is it?)

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

sasjdw
01-13-2006, 02:13 PM
Bob,

I'm restoring a '55 Speedster. Would the wiring diagram you mention above apply to my car as well? If so, would you be willing to send me a color copy of the wiring diagram you mentioned?

Thanks in advance,

Jim W.

James D. Wilkerson

BobPalma
01-13-2006, 04:24 PM
[8D] James, Nate, etc:
The wiring diagram referenced details wiring for the start, run, throttle solenoid, and transmission anti-creep circuits ONLY for 1955 Automatic Drive V-8 cars ONLY. These particular circuits are the same for Speedsters and other V-8/AD cars.

If you want one, please send me a dollar to cover the return postage, envelope, and the color copy. I'll color-copy the diagram and mail you one. My address has been the same and is in the heading of any Turning Wheels Co-Operator for the last 25 years... [:I] BP

RHO
01-14-2006, 10:16 AM
Now the wiper system wires are proving to be "challenging." Someone previously rewired and the white/blk wire had a ballast resistor in the line; was disconnected from the ignition switch accessory position; a short brown wire with a terminal end that reaches to nothing in the vicinity. The manual only shows "F & A" terminals on the back, but I found the wiper switch with F,A,P, and B terminals. Three wires obviously go to the motor and are routed together leaving the last wire needing to go to the ignition switch, so the plan is to just void what is there and run a new wire over to the Acc position of the ignition switch. Want to test the wiper motor on the car obviously before having to pull it.

RHO
01-14-2006, 06:54 PM
Obviously someone had trouble with all the accessories or tried to hook up a 12-volt battery to the car. In addition to the mysterious wiper wiring, I found both fuses blown for the heater and defroster fans but they had been wrapped in aluminum foil.

N8N
01-14-2006, 10:38 PM
Sounds like someone tried to convert to 12V and decided better of it. That would explain the ballast in line with the wiper motor, and the blown fuses for the blowers as well. I have a 6V under the fender motor that works if you need it as I just converted my '55 to 12V. I think I have the defrost as well but I had to steal the brush springs and maybe a couple other parts from it.

Anyway, "B" is battery and "P" is park. I forget the color codes but there should be yellow, green, and black coming from the wiper motor. There ought to be a circuit breaker on the switch itself tied to the "B" terminal. check the wiring diagram on Chuck Collins' site (or in the shop manual, it's the same one) hopefully all will be clear...

good luck

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

RHO
01-14-2006, 10:57 PM
Thanks. The "B" terminal is the one I used. The other three wires are all routed together. I just pulled the fender fan off late yesterday to clean it out of dirt dobbers and repair the power wire, then I'll know if it works. Two motor screws soaking in Kroil to faciltate disassembly. Just about to the point of hooking up the battery and progressively testing every thing.

N8N
01-14-2006, 11:03 PM
Was just reading back through this thread to see if there was anything that I missed that might prove helpful... nothing to add but a nit to pick. There are TWO yellow wires; one to the wiper motor, and one from the switch to the heater blower motor :)

And then there's my car... (lessee... I added a tach, an electronic ignition, 4-way flashers... made my own harness for the neutral safety, since the stock anti-creep was long gone... there's colors in there that Studebaker never even used!)

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

RHO
01-15-2006, 10:57 PM
Yes, I found the other yellow wire to the heater and have rewired it. There were a couple others that first appeared as yellow until I cleaned them.

RHO
01-24-2006, 11:28 PM
Have determined that this car's gauges were fried due to application of 12 volts. All the fuses and most bulbs blown; found 12V flasher in it this evening. Have resolved all but the following wiring situations.
Couple of questions:
1. The water temperature gauge provides no output so I assume it is burned up but curious is the gas gauge. I get a very weak signal on the output (test light...haven't checked with a voltmeter yet) but get the same result with a gauge from a parts car. Is there any normal built-in reduced voltage here, or do I have two faulty gauges?
2. I could not readily determine why the turn signal pilot lights wires would be 16 gage white when the manual specified 16 gage black, but in analyzing this maze of previous wiring for 12V, I noticed just one terminal was present for the turn signal indicator bulb ( some sort of two terminal 12V flasher was installed into a two-terminal plastic mount) but then that did not allow transfer of the current from the turn signal switch through the pilot lights to the trun signal lamps, so I assume the two dash-mounted turn signal indicator lamps/sockets are suppose to be TWO-TERMINAL? New 6V flasher with X terminal to the IGN ACC position, P terminal to the turn signal switch, and L terminal to both pilot lights?

RHO
01-25-2006, 06:57 PM
Troubleshooting produced no positive results this evening. Tried two different 6-Volt flashers and no go. Determined that a single wire from each dash-mounted pilot light goes to the wires leading to the front fender-mounted parking lights via the shroud-mounted junction bar. Three-prong flasher with standard X, L, P terminals. Good signal from ignition switch ACC position to flashet, good signal from flasher to the Turn Lights lever on the steering column and a good signal from the flasher to both front lamps but no flashing. Both dash-mounted lights come on bright which I would interpret as that part of the switch working. About out of ideas. With the wiring set up in this manner, I did not think I needed to go to a two-terminal pilot light on the dash since current should be getting to (and is, just not flashing) all 6 lights involved. Guess I need some fresh ideas.

N8N
01-25-2006, 09:58 PM
IIRC my '55 wiring looks pretty much like the wiring diagram WRT the directionals except that I think the left pilot light wire is a misprint, it is white with a brown tracer instead of brown. remember gReen = Right when messing with the directionals (I know that isn't really helpful as "brown" has an "r" in it too, but that's the best mnemonic I could come up with.) I don't think the pilot terminal is used; mine just has a 2-wire flasher.

Do you have bulbs installed in all four corners of the car? Unless the flasher sees enough load, it will not flash. That's how it tells you that a bulb is missing/burned out. MAke sure you are using the correct 6V bulbs, if you are converting back from 12V (and it sounds like you are) a 1034 or 1157 will not draw enough current on 6V to make the flasher work. Is it possible you have a junction/breaker block from an earlier car? I think mine only physically has two terminals, but '53 and '54 used a 3-terminal flasher IIRC, I think I remember having to rewire the directional lights on JP's street rod to get them to work correctly with the GM tilt column because the factory wiring was causing backfeeding through the hazard switch.

good luck,

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

RHO
01-25-2006, 10:34 PM
Well, I think you just provided me the answer, i.e., not enough load on the circuit. Today I have no bulbs installed at all, just new wires running to where the parking and taillamps will be including through the 5-terminal shroud-mounted junction bar. I was just checking the ends of the wires with a test lamp...test lamp illuminated ok but seemed a bit weak. That diagnosis certainly makes sense as I recall now that if one goes out on one side of the car or the other, it will flash very slowly; ok, with no bulbs there at all, it slows down even more and will not flash.
Yes, everything is correct back to 6 volts now with all bulbs, fuses, the flasher, etc. replaced.
That's what I needed....a new fresh idea. Thanks very much. That has to be it. Wiring is temporary just to get everything checked out as it will have to be removed from the engine compartment for touchup painting and getting the engine and all the rest of the big components back in. What I will do next is temporarly install 4 bulbs in the corners, charge the battery up, and retest.
Thanks again. I anticipate reporting success in the next few days.

gordr
01-25-2006, 10:43 PM
quote:Originally posted by RHO

Have determined that this car's gauges were fried due to application of 12 volts. All the fuses and most bulbs blown; found 12V flasher in it this evening. Have resolved all but the following wiring situations.
Couple of questions:
1. The water temperature gauge provides no output so I assume it is burned up but curious is the gas gauge. I get a very weak signal on the output (test light...haven't checked with a voltmeter yet) but get the same result with a gauge from a parts car. Is there any normal built-in reduced voltage here, or do I have two faulty gauges?
2. I could not readily determine why the turn signal pilot lights wires would be 16 gage white when the manual specified 16 gage black, but in analyzing this maze of previous wiring for 12V, I noticed just one terminal was present for the turn signal indicator bulb ( some sort of two terminal 12V flasher was installed into a two-terminal plastic mount) but then that did not allow transfer of the current from the turn signal switch through the pilot lights to the trun signal lamps, so I assume the two dash-mounted turn signal indicator lamps/sockets are suppose to be TWO-TERMINAL? New 6V flasher with X terminal to the IGN ACC position, P terminal to the turn signal switch, and L terminal to both pilot lights?


Don't you hate it when you have to undo somebody else's hack job?

If memory serves me right, on a 3-terminal flasher P goes to Power (accessory terminal), L goes to load (that would be the wire from the signal switch that is connected to left or right lampsets as required), and X is the telltale. If memory served me wrong, exchange X and P; L is definitely load.:D

What do you mean by "output" on the gauges? The sending units, both temp and tank, are simply variable resistors. Resistance range is on the order of 20 - 200 ohms. Low end of the range is "hot" or "full" respectively. The gauges themselves are 3-terminal devices; those terminals connect to accessory, sending unit, and ground, respectively. Ground isn't a terminal as such; it's normally obtained by means of the instrument housing being bolted to the instrument panel. On Speedsters, Hawks, and Avantis, that can be an issue, because the instrument panel is fiberglass, and a separate ground wire has to be attached to the bracket for the instrument in question.

Inside the temp or fuel gauge, the pointer mechanism consists of a pair of bimetal strips wrapped with wire heating elements. One heating element is connected between "ign" and ground, and the other is connected between "ign" and the sending unit. Current through BOTH is a function of system voltage. Additionally, current through the second is also a function of the resistance of the sending unit to which it is connected. Since the two bimetal strips are set up to oppose one another, pointer movement due to variations in system voltage is nulled out, and net pointer movement is due solely to the "signal" from the sending unit. Furthermore, since the gauge pointers are driven by metal strips bending under the influence of heat, they tend to move slowly. Means the fuel gauge won't dance around as fuel sloshes in the tank.

I figure an exposition on the mechanics of the gauges might help you visualize the nature of the troubleshooting you are faced with.

I can pretty much guarantee you that if somebody hooked the instruments up to 12 volts, without using any kind of voltage reducer, that the compensating elements inside the gauges, meaning the ones connected between "ign" and ground, will be smoked. That means the gauges themselves are toast, unless you can find a specialist to repair them. Fortunately, I think NOS gauges are available. Chances are, the sending units are OK, but I don't know for sure.

If I were working on your car, I think I would attempt to test the sending units by measur

RHO
01-25-2006, 11:07 PM
By output, I was just using a test lamp to see if when power was applied to the input side of the gauges (ignition switch on, as it is functional) the lamp would illuminate on the sending unit side of the gauge. Very dim light on the gas gauge and no light on the water temp. gauge.
I would have used the gas tank sending unit and manually moved the arm up and down, but a new sending unit is on the acquisition list since the one off the car is just totally gone. I just did pull the water temp. sending unit and do not yet know if it works (hope so since I have seen them advertised for a very pricey $65 or so).
With every fuse blown and nearly every bulb blown in the car, ballast resistors hung under the hood on the coil wire and under the dash on the wiper motor wire, and the 12V flasher semi-installed, I'm pretty sure now the gauges most have been zapped as you say. I found no resistors or reducers other than the two mentioned above, which really were not proper for what was trying to be accomplished.
I did see in the Studebakers International catalog last night new gauges at very reasonable prices, so will probably use that avenue. Yes, I figured the ammeter would be ok and as you say, oil pressure is mechanical. The engine on this car was locked up and we just did get it torn down over the weekend and the only problem we could detect was two stuck pistons but that may have been from a long time sitting. Keeping our fingers crossed on the Borg Ward tranny.
Thanks for the help!

N8N
01-26-2006, 06:46 AM
Just FWIW I found myself in a very similar situation on my car, and I had to replace the temperature gauge and fuel gauge. The fuel sending unit was still OK. I had to buy a new temperature sender simply because the original was long gone (had a '63 model engine under the hood and nobody swapped over the '55 sender.) So if I had to guess I would say that the gauges fry first. The ammeter was OK, and is still happily measuring current on 12V to this day.

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

sasjdw
02-06-2006, 01:26 PM
Can anyone provide a drawing or picture of the engine side of the firewall for a '55 Speedster? I need to know which holes are used for the following wire harnesses:

Tachometer
Main wiring harness
Speedometer cable
Rear light harness

Thanks in advance!

James D. Wilkerson

Frank Starr
02-07-2006, 04:36 PM
So what is the current fix for the anti-creep solenoid on Studebaker Automatic Drive? Is there a repair procedure, or ar new/rebuilt units available? There's no repair procedure in the Shop Manual.

Or do we just remove it and blank the hole?

Frank Starr
Seattle

N8N
02-07-2006, 06:03 PM
AFAIK the "anti-creep" works just the same as an electrically operated line lock, so if one wanted to replace it with a functionally identical modern part, it wouldn't be that difficult. Well, except for the fact that you'd have a heck of a time finding one with a 6V coil.

nate

--
55 Commander Starlight
62 Daytona hardtop
http://home.comcast.net/~njnagel

Frank Starr
02-08-2006, 03:26 PM
Yeah, I was thinking along the lines of an industrial solenoid operated valve, but they're 24 VDC.