View Full Version : Encouragement needed

09-11-2009, 03:03 PM
As of this morning, all the gages are out of Barney's dashboard. Looking through the holes, I can see literally every bit of wiring in the dash, and the thought occurs to me that I should just take the plunge and re-wire the whole thing right now.

There's a little trepidation involved since the car is actually running now as is :) but I know the wiring needs replacement, and if not now, when? I figure I could just work through the open holes in the instrument pod and get everything connected. I have a harness from Studebaker West.

I guess I'm just looking for a little reassurance that I can actually take this on successfully...

Side note: when I pulled out my gage cluster and opened the case, a small mountain of fine, tan sand poured out of it. I can't think of how this might have gotten in there, or any reason it should be! Very weird.


Clark in San Diego
'63 F2/Lark Standard

09-11-2009, 03:07 PM
I'd go ahead and do it, it would be easier to do it now, and you might feel more comferble knowing you have good wire, and not possibly bare one's ready to short.

Dylan Wills

'61 lark deluxe 4 door wagon

09-11-2009, 03:07 PM
Ants. If it ain't broke don't bother. jimmijim

Stude Junkie+++++++Do it right the f$$$$ Time. Never mind. Just do it right. When youre done your done. You'll know it.

09-11-2009, 03:11 PM
I always have to push myself to do a little more, which might be harder, while I am doing the minimum. It's hard to step up to the next process. But the final answer for me is always the same -- do it right the first time. It takes longer and is sometimes literally harder, but when you are done, IT is done. And the job won't screw you in the future.

'50 Champion, 1 family owner

09-11-2009, 03:15 PM
quote:Originally posted by BobGlasscock

I always have to push myself to do a little more, which might be harder, while I am doing the minimum. It's hard to step up to the next process. But the final answer for me is always the same -- do it right the first time. It takes longer and is sometimes literally harder, but when you are done, IT is done. And the job won't screw you in the future.

I agree. When I removed the sheetmetal and engine from my pickup recently, I removed the original wiring harness as well. Bought a new one from EZ Wiring, as recommended by Dick Steinkamp. If I decide to hop in my truck and go see Mr.Biggs in California, I don't want to worry about it breaking down. :) If you're gonna do it, go ahead and do it right. The peace of mind is definitely worth it. And besides, one little short and all your previous hard work will go up in flames.

Matthew Burnette
Hazlehurst, GA

09-11-2009, 03:47 PM
I've only done two, but it looks worse than it is. I took the top of the dash out on mine and that helped. Otherwise it's more than a few pulled back muscles under the dash lying down. My one big tip, take out the front seat(s), it is well worth it.
I clipped mine at the firewall and left everything in two pieces, one inside and one in the engine bay, then followed each connection one at a time until done. If you pull it all out expecting to remember how you took it out, you have much more confidence than I ever would. Good luck, you can absolutely do it and should, Clark.


Pat Dilling
09-11-2009, 03:53 PM
I say go for it an be done with it. It's not a bad Idea to take some masking tape and label everything the way it is now so you have a reference. The one wire at a time idea is also a good one.

Good luck with it, you can do it!


Pat Dilling
Olivehurst, CA
Custom '53 Starlight aka Stu Cool
LS1 Engine Swap Journal: http://www.hotrodders.com/forum/journal.php?action=view&journalid=33611

dean pearson
09-11-2009, 03:59 PM
Don't know how encouraging this will be but when I took the dash out of my 52 Commander
and saw the mess of wires back there it scared the SSST out of me.
I am replacing it with a 50 dash and luckily it looks less complicated.
Good luck.

09-11-2009, 04:10 PM
I did my 63. Its pretty easy Clark. just pull the whole face panel the Gauges sit in and swap the wires one at a time. Its VERY easy. Make sure you clean the contacts on the switches before you attach the wires. That will solve a multitude of ground issues later.

JGK 940
09-11-2009, 04:31 PM
I follow your blog. You can do this - Piece - O - Cake - and you should. Disclaimer: the process is nowhere near as complicated as it looks right now but it WILL take at least twice as long to complete as you initially think it will.

Helpful hints:

1) Use a set of highlighters or Flair pens (do they even still make those?) to color-code all those blinding little lines on your wiring diagram before you ever approach the car. They're a whole lot easier to follow when you're upside-down and backwards if they're in color.

2) Photograph EVERYTHING before you unplug ANYTHING and don't delete any of the files for at least a month after Barney's fully operational.

3) Keep us in the loop and tap into enthusiastic support as needed.

This message will self-destruct in ten seconds.

Good luck, Clark.

Keoni Dibelka / HiloFoto
In Hawai'i; on Hawai'i; on the Windward Side
If da salt air never chew 'em up bumbye da lava will...

09-11-2009, 04:55 PM
Ozarkpetunia did hers in her Super Coupe('56 Flight Hawk). I agree that you should pull the front seat out!
The engine compatment is the easy side! Wiring diagrams and test probes are your best friends.


**I'm not the best speller...FireFox catches most of my mistakes, but I use IE at work**

09-11-2009, 05:02 PM
Piece of cake. Real easy. go for it NOW!

Tex E. Grier

09-11-2009, 06:12 PM
I broke down in my 1950 while on a drive about 30 years ago. Attirbuted it to the wiring. When I was able to get it home, I was so upset I just pulled the wiring out as a whole, then used the wiring diagram in the Shop Manual and created my owned, using the original as a pattern. Much easier now that you can go out and buy them. It is easy to do. Iwwould go for it!


09-11-2009, 06:32 PM
Barnlark has the right idea. That is how I always do it!!!

1957 Studebaker Champion 2 door. Staten Island, New York.

09-11-2009, 06:59 PM
Go for it, You've got the new harness. I redid my '55 one wire at a time and am satisfied with it, but visually it's a mess.

Tom Bredehoft
'53 Commander Coupe (since 1959)
'55 President (6H Y6) State Sedan
....On the road, again....
'05 Legacy Ltd Wagon
All Indiana built cars

09-11-2009, 08:28 PM
Well, you've already got the harness. If I can do it ('64 wagonaire), you certainly can. I did the wire-by-wire routine. It was considerably easier than it looked at first. The contortion act to GET to everything wasn't. Did Barney have the South-West as his first or most long-term home? That would explain the sand. It gets in evvvverything.[xx(]

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/december%2006/HPIM0234.jpg http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b18/Studeclunker/56%20Parkview%20Wagon/56wagonleftfrontclipped-1.jpg
Home of the famous Mr. Ed!
K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple Studebaker!
Ron Smith
Where the heck is Lewiston, CA?

09-11-2009, 10:07 PM
Thanks for the encouragement, guys - that's just what I needed. I think Sunday is the day!


Clark in San Diego
'63 F2/Lark Standard

09-12-2009, 09:32 AM
[u]You Can Do It!!!</u>

Sorry I don't have little cheerleader emoticons ;)

144 weeks till completion.