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Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 06 Jun 2018 16:35
by bertvorgon
WELL..that was an unmitigated disaster.... :?

So, with great care, I tried to get a long philips screw driver to undo the small screw holding the flasher relay to the steering column mount. Under my dash is not something I am proud of, a zillion wires added over 40 years of gadgets being wired in during my combat time..just get'r done.

I got it with one try and was able to pull the unit down with the wiring harness. Low and be hold...I get blindsided by some sort of adapter on there, which makes the flasher have two PARALLEL spades...HHMMMM. Not like the Red flasher I ordered from SuperBright

So..I unplug the adapter thing and plug in the new LED flasher..nothing.....oh that figures...

Plug the old assembly back in and then put LED bulb in turn signal at back of KINDA lights up but incredible dull...useless.

Then, I think..lets check the bulb with straight 12 is ok. Super bright.

I then start thinking about the LED flasher....and...LED bulbs...they are polarity sensitive. I look at the flasher and it IS marked with a positive spade. Ok...lets try making a small harness and reverse the wring as it relates to the Datsun plug to the flasher..

Sure enough everything lights up and the conventional bulbs light up and flash...AAAHAAAAA

I put the LED bulb in the back....hardly lights is flashing though..

Me and Mr.Electron never get along ( which is why I hope Byron gives me a hand with the headlights), but, I think to myself as I ran into this before, LED's don't like LOW voltage. I get out my multi meter and guess what...which is why even the STOCK bulb is dull......I have maybe 5-6 volts there...what the Hell!!!!! Something is severely cutting voltage to the rear turn signal bulbs.

At this point I throw up my hands, I checked the ground screw at the back, cleaned it, no change. So I need to re-think this. I built this car in 1978 so a LOT of things I have done have been forgotten and I only started my log books in late 1978 There is a "funny" section of wiring on the back taillights that go to the turn signals, it is NOT factory, something I did but long lost in memory as to why. I just wonder if there is some weird voltage feedback or restriction going on. I have a NEW set of factory taillights and am going to plug them in and see what happens. The adapter thingy I think I bought to have a LOUDER click when the turns are on, but, changed the flasher relay itself to something other than factory. The factory plug at the flasher had a full 12 volts, so something is amiss at the back.

To be continued......

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 06 Jun 2018 18:26
by RMS
when your testing are you indicating L/R or pulling the 4way sw ? I think all pl510s have two flasher units? one is for indicating and one is for emergency's (4way). (direct vs keyed power.)

if lights act differently between indicating and 4ways its probably in the column. id say I will drop off a turn signal sw at the plant ...but ....
if lights act the same when indicating or pulling on the 4way sw its towards the back. assuming the fronts look good.

when looking for faults in the signals I like to remove the flashers and jump the female buts together with a short piece of wire. now constant power is going to the turns. start at the back, pull light socket from tail lamp assembly, probe socket with light on and note voltage. remove bulb probe socket note voltage. replace bulb. probe the back of the tail light harness to rear main harness plug. note voltage. unplug tail light harness from rear main harness, and probe. repeat with the other tail light. if no noticeable differences are noted move on the rear main to under dash plug located somewhere between the heater and stock ebrake....location im not familiar with the 73s so I cant give you an exact location, wire count, or colour. but if you find you have a rub through beside the passenger seat or under the gas tank, I got a harness or we use yours as parts and make a new one.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 06 Jun 2018 20:12
by bertvorgon
4 way works just fine! With factory flasher, did not remove it, too hard to get to.

I am trying the left / right. Turn signals. I will try jumping contacts and check voltage at socket/bulb.

I have a box of matches......

If it's raining and I do not go to Canby, I will maybe spend some more time trying to figure this out.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 07 Jun 2018 10:27
by bertvorgon
Did a small test this morning, just to prove to myself that LOW voltage is an issue with bulbs, specially with LED.

I knew I had a small 12V. standby battery in my basement, and that it was getting really old. So, I check the voltage,10.9 volts. I then hooked up one of the new 1156 LED bulbs to it, it fired up but not very bright to say the least, maybe 1/3 it's out put. I then tested the bub with my jump-start battery pack, where the voltage checked at 12.5' ish volts. Hook the bulb to that..BLAZO, super bright.

If the voltage that I saw ( with my older analog meter), was in that 5-6 volts, that would sure show why the bulb hardly glowed at all. And, that the conventional 1156 bulb is very dull itself due to low voltage..

I will try Robyn's suggestion to jumper the flasher plug, so I get a stable voltage reading at the bulb socket, and really see what it is with my digital voltage meter. Then, test the harness plug where the tail light assembly plugs in, one on each side.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 09 Jun 2018 11:15
by bertvorgon
As it was a pissing rain day yesterday I thought I would just lurk about in my basement, clean some things up, and then build these small wiring bits to reverse the plug in for the LED flasher. I also made a jumper wire as per Robyn's suggestion to just get a steady voltage to the rear, then I can begin testing. I did even solder them, so they will never be an issue.

I think when I did my initial testing it did stop the hyper-flashing on my passenger side, as I do have a small LED light there for my front turning. If that is the case I will leave the LED flasher in regardless as I try to figure out where the voltage is going at the rear.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 11 Jun 2018 10:31
by bertvorgon

Yesterday I rambled on over to the 510, really wanting to get this LED/flasher thing sorted out. I am going to write this as I actually progressed through the testing.

See if you fine mind electrical guru’s can see what is going on. My nice enlarged wiring diagram is still at my work, so I sure would have liked to have been able to look at that, to see how the lights are wired.

First, I disconnected my battery maintainer and checked battery voltage: 13.15 volts

Then, I checked voltage across the flasher plug at the steering column: 10.5 volts.

I put in my jumper wire at flasher plug.

I then checked the voltage at LEFT REAR turn signal socket: 8.40 Volts

Checked RIGHT REAR turn signal socket: 10.3 volts

I then turned on just the 4 way flasher ( still factory) and BOTH sockets had 10.3 -10.4 volts and worked nice and bright.

I then put in the LED flasher.

RIGHT turn signal 1156 LED bulb lit up nice and bright

LEFT turn signal 1156 LED bulb hardly glowed at all.

I then decide to just try putting in the LEFT front 1157 LED bulb…whammo…the LEFT REAR bulb fires up nice and bright and I check voltage: 9+ volts!!!

Now, all signals work, bright, no hyper-flashing. I check battery voltage after 30 minutes of lights on/off, check running lights, etc.: 12.8 volts

So…the connection at the left front had an issue..I guess..which also affected the rear on that side. When I next take my inter-cooler out, I will check and clean the connection for the 1157 front, where it plugs into the harness, the socket itself looked very clean.

I now have 1157 LED brake and running lights and the 1156 (1157 front) LED turn signals.

If someone could humour me, could you check YOUR voltage at the rear turn signal socket(s), just to see if in reality I am low regardless, even if functional.

The LED flasher relay does then work on our 510’s, with just the wiring reversal as per the pictures. The LED 1156 bulbs then have a lower threshold of how much voltage it takes to fire them up, obviously 9+ volts does the job.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 12 Jun 2018 16:43
by bertvorgon
I picked up my wiring diagram today and can see that you MUST have the 4 ways working first, as THEY supply power to the turn signal flasher, so that is good, mine works just fine.

I will now trace wires and try to see what is up at various connections.

It has been a bazillion years since I had the steering column apart so I think I will start there and see how the contacts are doing and see where the next plug is, in the chain of command.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 14 Jun 2018 06:35
by Byron510
Funny you mention that power goes through the 4 way flasher in series before the signal switch. I was reminded of this a few years ago on the Bronze when my signals stopped working one day. On the car I used a 68 dash which doesn’t have a mounting spot for the 4 way flashers, and used a 69 wiring harness which does have a 4 way flasher. So the switch is tucked up beside the harness. The plug simply came loose and stopped the power from getting to the signal lights. This time I secured the switch in a way that doesn’t stress he connection in hopes that it doesn’t come loose again :-)

BTW, finally got to test the new Bi-focal Hella lights we bought from Daniel Stern. The cut off on the low beams is beautiful, these certainly will be easy on my fellow drives eyes when I’m facing oncoming traffic. And the pair of high beams work extremely well on their own. Not sure if the whole package was worth the premium above a standard set of new Hella lights, but they are sure a huge improvement I’ve rmy 40 year old lights that came out.

Speaking of comparison between our Bi-focals and standard Hella off the shelf lights, I will be doing a direct comparison soon as I have a set of Hellas which I will install on my brothers car. I’ll be sure to wire his identical to mine and install similar bulb brands and wattage so that I can do a good comparison between the two.


Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 14 Jun 2018 06:44
by bertvorgon
I have my box of lights ready to go, found my other bits from years past.

I am having trouble reading the wiring diagram as I am not up to speed on convention of said wiring diagram. I have that enlarged colour copy of Paulo's, which is great, but not sure as to which way Mr. Electron actually goes in a few spots. I suspect the the small "box" in some areas must be a connector?

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 14 Jun 2018 21:56
by Byron510
I tried to buy a set of Paulo's prints, but at the time I contacted him a couple years back. He'd quit producing them anymore. At any rate - I'd love a good copy of yours in trade for the installation :-)

As noted in my wiring of the headlights posted on the Bronze thread, I assume the function of your relay is identical to my 69 harness. So it'll be pretty straight forward now that this work has been completed as to which direction current is going - switched power, switched grounds and hi beams indicator light ect.

Now we just have to find the time - this weekend is out for sure! Friday evening is one of my international daughters grad party here, I am building a wheel chair ramp Saturday for one of my fellow scouters who lost his leg last week in surgery, my daughter has a piano recital mid day Saturday in that and in the evening my cub scout troop sleep over on at the aquarium into Father day activities on Sunday..... the weekend is pretty well booked!


Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 15 Jun 2018 08:42
by bertvorgon
Morning Byron,

I will get a copy done for you no problem, I enlarged mine to 12" x 20", really easy to read, in colour of course.

No worries about this weekend, family "retirement" brunch for me and then meeting a fellow to sell my Honda wheels to. Your likely camping on the July long weekend?

As I trace the rear turn signals, I am still not sure if they ground back there...or.....

PM sent.

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 15 Jun 2018 13:33
by Byron510
bertvorgon wrote:
15 Jun 2018 08:42

As I trace the rear turn signals, I am still not sure if they ground back there...or.....
There is a harness chassis ground back there; two wires normally coming together at a ring connector in the harness - terminating to ground right near the trunk catch held down by a #2 Phillips machine screw.

Hope that helps.


Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 15 Jun 2018 14:14
by RMS
I too have a Paulo's prints diagram. one for the 68 and I tell ya its very nice but not 100% accurate. ..... difference may be between us and ca cars ?

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 15 Jun 2018 14:32
by bertvorgon
I did take that ground off and clean it, the one in the trunk. I wish it was not so hard to get under my dash, I would like to pull the plug and re-connect.

Also, what did the bulb and voltage change AFTER I changed that front bulb?!

Robyn, do you have 12 volts at the rear turn signal socket?

Re: Turn signal flasher relay

Posted: 15 Jun 2018 16:48
by RMS
so I just went and checked car not running 12.2v on the bat and it looks like 9.5~10v on turn or 4way..... :oops: I usually use a light or ohms on the meter when looking for ground faults. couldn't find the jump wires to delete the flashers.... I will look more and report back