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backup light works only in combination with "main lights" on

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  • Electrical: backup light works only in combination with "main lights" on

    took some time but, now i'm trying again to bring my 59 lark (automatic) on the road again.
    For Europe, flasher have to be split from break-/taillights. So an additional cable has been drawn to the back (red/white directly from the brakelightswitch), used for breaklights only. the original taillights are now used for the flashers (with amber bulbs), and for the backup light an additional lamp has been installed below the bumper.
    So far, so good, but now i've realized, that the backup light only works, when "main lights" are switched on...switching lights of, backup light stays dark.
    Can't understand that, i've done no modification in this section, i'm still using the original "white/black" cable.

    Have tried to study the wiring diagram, but it's a bit confusing the me, as there is mentioned an "syncho-mesh trans"....don't know what is is, and how to verify it.

    So i'm hoping for some clarification/hints: do i have an syncho mesh, a "backup light switch" or an "baclup light and neutral safety switch" where is it located in the car....and where is the connection to the "fuse box"??

    thanks in advance and best regards

  • #2
    A Syncromesh trans is a 3speed manual, you said you have an automatic. i think the backup light switch is down low on the steering column just above the floor. be careful messing with it, it has a nylon pin that contacts linkage and breaks easily. power comes from the flasher/ fuse panel. memory is a bit foggy as my 60 lark project is a 1000 miles distant. Luck Doofus


    • #3
      The backup light switch on your car is mounted in the engine compartment on the steering column very near where the the column comes through the firewall. It is normal that the backup lights only come on when the headlights were on--that is how it was done in those days. It will be very easy to add a power lead to the switch from the accessory terminal of the ignition switch or from the turn signal flasher panel so that lights work whenever the ignition is on. That switch on the column is also your neutral safety switch which allows the car to start only in Park or Neutral so take care figuring out which wires are which.

      Ich habe mal in der nähe von Linz gewohnt. Wo wohnen Sie?


      • #4
        ok, thanks a lot, so it's not a bug, it's a feature ;-)
        ...and found the switch in the meantime - will check the best way to switch from light+ to ignition+

        @Ross: i'm living 50 km northeast from Vienna (about 2 1/4 hours to Linz) - in some US states the distance to the next supermarket ;-))


        • #5
          great, problem was easy to solve now with this informations: +cable to switch is colored black/yellow and there is a connector under the dash (splitting to taillight and switch)
          disonnected there and connected to fuseblock - works like a charm now :-))

          thanks a lot and best regards