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  • Electrical: Weak turn signal

    I have this problem on my 52 Studebaker, but as it's heavily modified, think 12V hot rod wiring. New wires, new sockets, soldered connections etc.
    The drivers front turn signal is not as bright as the other front or the rears. It works perfectly fine - it is just not very bright.
    I know you are going to figure it to be a ground problem, (it's always grounds), but I've sanded all over the socket connection and even went so far as to alligator clip a new wire from the socket to the frame. Did not help.
    Different bulb did not fix it. New flasher unit did not fix it. The tail light on this same side flashes strong, but not the front!

    What I have not done yet is get a meter and measure volts coming in to that socket. I suppose it will be low, to cause the flash to be weak? And if it's not low, then are we back to grounds again? I need a new idea on what to try here.

  • #2
    To prove it isn't a ground, run your alligator clip back to the battery.

    Is it an original turn signal switch? Could you have a bad solder joint, with the wires not touching and only solder providing minimal conductivity.

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    • #3
      If the power supply checks out and the ground is good, you may want to try LED bulbs. My brother's brake lights never seemed bright enough until he installed the LEDs. I am considering them for my Commander.
      "In the heart of Arkansas."
      Searcy, Arkansas
      1952 Commander 2 door. Really fine 259.
      1952 2R pickup

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      • #4
        Depending on the TYPE of Turn Signal Control Box and Lever you have, Stock or Aftermarket add-on, usually Studebaker's have Dash Indicators that are wired to the FRONT Turn Signal Wires Left and Right.

        If there is a poor connection or week Ground at the Indicator Lights, the Front Signal Lights CAN be affected.

        How Bright and the Speed of the Flash with variable rate STANDARD Flasher Units is controlled by the amount of Resistance from ALL Bulbs working, whereas the H.D. Flashers can flash 6 or 8 Bulbs at exactly the same speed so will NOT warn you that a Bulb is out by very Fast or very Slow flashing.
        Last edited by StudeRich; 11-01-2019, 01:46 PM.
        StudeRich
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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        • #5
          Is the i side of the socket clean? It could be a bad ground, or power supply inside the socket. Good Luck with it.

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          • #6
            Is the parking light a little brighter than the rest. Don't ask how I know about a mis-wired socket.

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            • #7
              Yes to checking the connections inside the car. The wiring coming from the switch itself and then follow them to the flasher and to the bulkhead connecter. Its got be some where, in one of those connections. Super Baker

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              • #8
                Try wiring up the bulb outside of the socket(alligator clips) ground right to the battery.

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                • #9
                  I had a similar problem on my 62 Hawk but driver's rear signal light. Could not find the problem so I tried a 6v bulb. Not enough voltage for 12v but this bulb works fine - a work around until I find the true fix.
                  sigpicJohn Esmonde
                  Holland Landing, Ontario
                  Canada
                  \'62 Hawk
                  \'60 Lark Regal Convertible
                  \'30 Chev Coach

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by sweetolbob View Post
                    Is the parking light a little brighter than the rest. Don't ask how I know about a mis-wired socket.
                    And there it was - you got it Bob. I owe you a cold one for that.
                    I think my brain was telling me that if those wires were wrong then it would not work at all. Just had to stop and think about how the socket works to realize you were right.
                    Thanks for the ideas guys.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Michidan View Post

                      And there it was - you got it Bob. I owe you a cold one for that.
                      I think my brain was telling me that if those wires were wrong then it would not work at all. Just had to stop and think about how the socket works to realize you were right.
                      Thanks for the ideas guys.
                      Story of my life, I'll spend hours wiring every socket correctly and some how the wiring fairy will sneak in and change one just to screw with me. Glad it was straightforward.

                      Bob

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