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Wiring harness, repop or aftermarket?

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  • Wiring harness, repop or aftermarket?

    My '57 Commander 4 door needs to be rewired. It is going to be a mild custom, stock 259, overdrive, alternator, vintage air, power windows, shaved doors with solenoids, stereo.
    Should I buy a reproduction harness, or go with an aftermarket one? The existing wires are a real rat's nest!
    Thanks!

    Charles Eck
    Essex, MD

    '57 Commander 4 door sedan, 'Bluebird'
    '66 Ford F-250
    '53 John Deere 50

    Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

  • #2
    I think some are made with old style wire insulation, but that would only be important if you're really worried about losing points in judging. I'm not sure if the 1957s had any cloth covered wires or all plastic.

    I've heard some good things about the aftermarket harnesses, but personally I'd go with a reproduction harness from someone like Studebakers West. That way if you have questions, you're more likely to get honest, knowledgeable answers.
    "Madness...is the exception in individuals, but the rule in groups" - Nietzsche.

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    • #3
      Posted - 12/10/2007 : 5:34:01 PM
      --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

      http://www.itsasnapwireandcable.com/
      http://www.ronfrancis.com/
      http://www.painlessperformance.com/
      http://www.ezwiring.com/ (I'm using this at about $200. for the whole car)
      http://hotronicsproducts.com/
      http://www.haywireinc.com/ (an excellent site for explanation and photos)
      There are many ads and articles in the magazines of: National Street Rod Association (NSRA) and Goodguys for wiring/.
      BRAD

      Be sure to ask each company the length of wire they send in their harness kit. It is usually more than ample, However if you buy a made ready harness you get the wire you get. Most companies send plenty of wire and you cut to length which means you don't have to fight short wires in installation and repairs down the road.

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      • #4
        The problem with a reproduction harness is that you will have to fashion your own wiring for the air, windows, etc. I have an EZwiring harness in my M5 with air, etc., and am very happy with it. It installed as advertized and one phone call got a wiring diagram for my early Ford pickup (1967) steering column with turn signals instead of the usual GM column. For a non-stock vehicle with modern accessories, I would highly recommend the aftermarked harness.

        Hope this helps

        Jeff

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        • #5
          I agree that the repro harness from Stude vendors are very high quality with good after-sale service, however with all the additional circuits you will be adding for non-stock items, you probably would wind up having a parallel home-made harness running along side anything you bought from a Stude vendor. The after-market harnesses are pretty adaptable and they can be ordered with as many additional circuits as you want. The list Brad posted above is a good assortment of quality products, and I'm personally familiar with both the Painless and EZWiring products as being high quality. Painless is pricier, however.

          Las Vegas, NV
          '51 Champion Business Coupe G899965 10G-Q4-1434

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          • #6
            I'm on the ezwire band wagon. Quality, bulletproof, inexpensive.


            Dick Steinkamp
            Bellingham, WA

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            • #7
              I think I'm leaning towards EZ Wire, I see they have the power window kits. Anyone use these?

              Charles Eck
              Essex, MD

              '57 Commander 4 door sedan, 'Bluebird'
              '66 Ford F-250
              '53 John Deere 50

              Studebakers were made to drive! (Besides, they don't get lost as easy in the Wal-Mart parking lot!)

              Comment


              • #8
                I find it easier to pull wire from junk car to get enough different colored wire and make it from scratch.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have a friend who uses this method. Free. BRAD
                  quote:Originally posted by leyrret

                  I find it easier to pull wire from junk car to get enough different colored wire and make it from scratch.

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                  • #10
                    Just ordered an EZ 21 harness for the Speedster.


                    34 STUDEBAKER STREET ROD
                    55 SPEEDSTER (in work)
                    63 R2 LARK (in work)
                    85 AVANTI (9K miles)

                    34 Studebaker Street Rod (completed)
                    55 Speedster (in work)
                    63 Lark R2 (completed, 63K miles)
                    64 Daytona CNV (completed, 63K miles)
                    64 Avanti R2 (completed)
                    85 Avanti(blackout trim, 10K miles)
                    89 Avanti CNV (19K miles)

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                    • #11
                      In your situation,where the car is going to be more of a streetrod,the aftermarket is the way to go.The folks at Ron Francis wiring talk a pretty good game,and their FREE catalog is worth a look-see before you invest any $$$.Lots of tech tips too.(800)292-1940 or www.RonFrancis.com Once I get my leaky windsield (wires are loaded with corrision and corruption)taken care of,the next stop is the elec. system.Let us know what system you used and how you made out.Good Luck![8D]

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                      • #12
                        As mentioned, go the aftermarket route. This is also a good time to install relays for the headlamps as well.

                        ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Tom - Valrico, FL

                        1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $1755.45)

                        Tom - Bradenton, FL

                        1964 Studebaker Daytona - 289 4V, 4-Speed (Cost To Date: $2514.10)
                        1964 Studebaker Commander - 170 1V, 3-Speed w/OD

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                        • #13
                          I've rewired a half dozen cars, and this time I bot a "repro" wireset for my bullet. It was so far 'off the mark' that I wound up taking it apart and adding additional wire/circuits. Next time, I'll definitely go with a generic producer, such as Ron Francis or Painless. Also, while you're fussing with the harness replacement, consider fishing a few extra wires through the car for wired grounds, rather than depending on rusted chassis or sheetmetal to do your grounding for you. Great gremlin eradicator.


                          51 Commander State Sedan
                          Butler PA

                          51 Commander State Sedan
                          Butler PA

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