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53 K tail light help please.

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  • 53 K tail light help please.

    Removing the tail lights, how do I get the light socket out of the housing without breaking something?

  • #2
    Assuming it's like the later ones, you don't, you unplug the wires from the light socket from the rear body harness underneath the car.

    nate

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

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    • #3
      There should be a bakelite connector with the "bullet" pins down behind the rear bumper. Its probably hidden behind a sheet metal panel that bolts to the rear frame cross member. Unplug the wires there and feed them out through the body when you remove the taillamp housing. The sockets are considered part of the lamp and are not designed to be removed. The socket is crimped or swaged into the die casting. If you are wanting to replace the socket due to rust and poor connections, you can squish it with a big pliers and carefully pry it out of the casting. The pot metal is thin so care is needed! Replacement sockets with snap-in tabs are available at most auto parts stores. The holes are 5/8" dia. Snap the new one in and bend the tabs down on the inside so it won't pop back out when you push the bulb in. It also helps to put some silicon gasket goop on the back side to help glue it in.

      Jeff

      '53 Champion Hardtop

      Jeff in ND

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      • #4
        Question to Jeff H: I also need to replace some rusted-out light sockets in my '48 Champion. Do the light sockets you get at the auto parts store need to be 6 volt, or do I just need to make sure it has the correct diameter and connections in the base, for the bulb I need (single filament vs. dual filament)?

        doctormap
        '48 Champion 4-door

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        • #5
          Just get the right configuration. There's no "6volt" sockets.

          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
          No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

          Comment


          • #6
            So if I want to send the housing out for plating I need to destroy and replace the socket?
            Don Wilson, Centralia, WA

            40 Champion 4 door*
            50 Champion 2 door*
            53 Commander K Auto*
            53 Commander K overdrive*
            55 President Speedster
            62 GT 4Speed*
            63 Avanti R1*
            64 Champ 1/2 ton

            * Formerly owned

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            • #7
              The plater can do it with the wires so don't screw with that swedged housing.

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              • #8
                I THINK - you can push the wires and spring-loaded contacts out thru the inside of the fixture. That way, there's nothing for the plater to hurt. It won't matter if he plates the metal barrel of the base - although most of the bodies I've seen redone, the plater's taped up the socket to keep from plating the insides.

                I'll tell you one thing. Make DAMNED SURE you take extensive photos of the taillight's overall condition before you hand it over to the plater. I just saw a boatload of rechromed stuff for a Speedster and the platers RUINED the potmetal pieces by grinding the living S*** out of everything to eliminate the pits. This was AFTER the platers had guaranteed the owner that they'd adeptly eliminate the pitting to where he'd never be able to tell there'd been a problem![xx(][8][V]

                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
                No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

                Comment


                • #9
                  My recollection on the wires is that they are covered with a rubber sleave or hose like sheath and that is crimped to the back side of the socket. Assuming it was all like new, The contact plate, spring, and wires could be pulled through the sleave and removed but that would leave the sleave still attached to the socket. All of these I have ever seen except a NOS one were dried out and cracked/rotten though and the rubber busts off right at the socket. Sort of makes removing the wires a lot easier. Since a '53 has cloth wires that are probably all rotten too, it makes sense to replace it all. If the socket is not rusted badly, I'd leave it though. You can unsolder the old wires from the contact plate and reuse it. New ones with a spring and short pigtails are available from auto parts stores though. Don't worry about 6v vs 12v on things like sockets and switches. Circuit breakers, flashers, guages, and lamps are particular though.

                  Jeff

                  '53 Champion Hardtop

                  Jeff in ND

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