View Full Version : 6 Volt Horns - poor survival rate

05-07-2008, 08:20 PM
A test of the horn on my '55, when liberating the car from its winter prison, produced no noise except a click from the relay. I liberated the horn frm the car and tested it on the battery. Zip.

Nothing in my cache of 2 or 3 used horns produced more than a "raspberry".

I've called a few places but no one has any replacesments. I'd like a set of hi/lows, but even ebay's 6volt "department" has nothing right now.

WHERE DO I FIND 6 VOLT HORNS ? At this point, anything, even non-Studie OEM should looked at. I tried a couple of farm equipment places and TSC. Any ideas???

Roger "153624" Hill

55 Champion
47 M-5
Izzer Buggy
Junior Wagon

05-07-2008, 08:50 PM
I am returning my 6-volt horns to their home behind the grill of my '53 but they will be powered by 12-volt. One of them worked fine when subjected to 12-volts but the other would only produce a sound I can describe as "dunk". I took it to my local, long in business, auto electric shop. I don't know what they did but, I have it back and it works fine. Don't give up on your old horn if it's responding to juice.

05-07-2008, 09:01 PM
I've heard that those old horns actually have a set of points in them, and can be cleaned/rebuilt. Try taking yours apart and see what you can do. Can't hurt any. :)

Matthew Burnette
Hazlehurst, GA

05-07-2008, 11:57 PM
You're right, Matt. I haven't given a repair much of a thot. That's the beauty (or, one of the beautiful points) of our older vehicles - they can be repaired and rebuilt.

Still, it's a hard concept to get your head around - that there may be no new 6 volt horns for sale?!?!?! Gotta be, somewhere.

Roger "153624" Hill

55 Champion
47 M-5
Izzer Buggy
Junior Wagon

05-08-2008, 12:39 AM
Some even have an exterior tone adjusting screw.. mbstude is correct they can be repaired with a point file and removing any rust at the electrical connection(s).

05-08-2008, 02:12 AM
Man! All that an electric horn is? It's a simple buzzer, coupled to a metal diaphragm with a horn coupled to that.

A buzzer is about the simplest piece of electromechanical hardware ever devised. An electromagnet that pulls on a moveable part (i.e. armature) and that self-same moveable part opens a set of contacts that feed current to the electromagnet. When I was a kid, we made buzzers by winding #20 DCC wire around a nail, and making an armature out of metal cut from a bean can, and powering the whole thing from a #6 dry cell. (Really)

Take the over off the mechanism. Clean the points. Connect to a battery of the proper voltage. Adjust the "tone" screw so that the horn sounds loudly, and reliably when the current is cut off/switched on. Horns pull a fair amount of juice. Use #10 wire when attempting to adjust them, so that voltage drop in the wiring does not unduly affect the performance.

About the only thing that can truly kill an electric horn is setting the points too tight and burning out the electromagnet. Or else parts being fatally rusted or coming apart. They are rugged pieces of hardware. But the setting of the adjusting screw IS critical.

Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

05-08-2008, 11:05 AM
There is a section in the repair manual (at the back ofthe electrical section, I think) that covers horn adjustments. Also, be sure to clean out the "bell" of the horn. Compressed air works here, but be sure to protect your eyes. You'd be surprised what you might find clogging them up -- wasp nests, sand, gravel, bug bodies, you name it.

Kindest regards,

Alan Mende
Hummelstown, PA

05-08-2008, 05:23 PM
gordr says: "When I was a kid, we made buzzers by winding #20 DCC wire around a nail, and making an armature out of metal cut from a bean can, and powering the whole thing from a #6 dry cell. (Really)"

Gord - won't wash.... Most of us read thru this facade of innocence.[}:)] You might have concocted the above when you were 3 or 4, but I'd wager that by the time you hit puberty you were fabricating control rods for the home-made nuclear reactor you'd use to power your welding endeavors.[:I]

Miscreant Studebaker nut in California's central valley.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President two door

05-09-2008, 09:45 AM
I have found a good ground is very important for horns especially 6 volt.

05-09-2008, 11:45 PM
I didn't look at J.C. Whitney, but I'll bet you can find new 6volt Volkswagen horns for sale in VW magazines. But you might not like the sound.:DBEEP BEEP[:o)]

(read it backwards)

05-10-2008, 10:38 AM
I have taken several horns apart by drilling out the rivet splayed ends and then carfully punching the shaft on thru with a punch after first loosening it by applying lock plyers on the head and turning back and forth. Once apart, take the paper gaskets off the diaphram and make new ones for replacements. Clean up the innards and file the points. I used stainless bolts to put back together. Some of the Spartan horns had the removable cover but even then I still needed to take the top shell off the bottom because of corresion. Just did an NOS one that had been sitting on a shelf in the original box for years and points had a powdered coating built up and horn wouldn't work. Works great now!