No announcement yet.

Front Park Lights and Turn Signals on 1950 Champion

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Electrical: Front Park Lights and Turn Signals on 1950 Champion

    Working on a 1950 Studebaker Champion with a 6-volt positive ground. Having trouble with the front park lights and turn signals. Should the wires going down to the bulb&socket be hot or should they just be ground wires. Could anyone explain how the park and signal lights work in a positive ground system?

  • #2
    Auto bulbs, parking, signal, brake, headlight of the filament type, are not polarity sensitive.
    The filaments will glow no matter which polarity is applied when out of a socket.
    No, the leads should not be temperature hot since the typical bulb draws little current however if the
    bulb contact or wire is shorted then would be very hot and likely blow a fuse.
    Unless you mean electrically "hot" in which case , yes , the wires are at negative voltage potential.
    The wire or wires going into the bulb socket carry six volts from the battery negative post via the corresponding switch/fuze.
    The socket metal body is at positive ground potential. The current flows through the wire, into the
    bulb filament through the insulated contacts(s) on the bulbs bottom, and out to the metal socket body mounted on the car .
    This is generally independent of bulb use.
    There usually are no ground wires to the socket-the exception might be a fiberglas mounting surface that cannot
    carry the ground current or special applications where voltage can come from multiple switches like courtesy lights.
    The metal socket body is usually riveted to the car body, thus supplying the ground path.
    I have found that most of my troubles with non-working lights are caused by poor grounds, from rusty screws, corroded/dirty
    contact surfaces, and rotted sockets.
    ...Dick Curtis
    The 1950 Champion Starlight
    Santa Barbara


    • #3
      Thanks for your answer. I am 90% squared away. I do have another question. On this car, with the light switch off , the wire running to the park light carries 6 volts. Should it have the 6 volts with the switch off? All help appreciated.


      • #4
        No, it should not carry any voltage. Sounds like you've got a leak somewhere.


        • #5
          The parking light also functions as a turn signal light if your Champion is so equipped.
          The voltage may be coming from the signal switch-move it and see if the light goes out.
          If so, bad switch.
          The 1950 Champion Starlight
          Santa Barbara