Hello and 53 Hornet 308 wiring fiasco

53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
Hello all ,
Im new to the whole Hudson side of things (I’m also umung the youngest in the Hudson club ) I daily a 65 Ford Falcon and am working on my newly acquired 53 Hornet to get it daily able . 
I’m having a heck of a time getting some of the wiring figured out, i have a wiring diagram and know how to read it; I reverted back to 6v for ease of repairs. 
I replaced the flasher and it won’t flash , it has 6v and is brand new, it will flash 3 times then freeze up and get hot , if you tap it it will work one time.
Hudsonly ,Blake
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Comments

  • KdancyKdancy Posts: 2,482Senior Contributor
    Does your Hudson still have the original cloth covered wiring harness?
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,276Senior Contributor
    So your Hornet was converted from 6V to 12V and you have converted back to 6V?  Did it also change from positive ground 6V to negative ground 12V and what did you do with the ground now that you have converted back neg or positive ground?
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    edited September 1
    Was converted to 12 and went back to 6 with original harness and Is pos ground also front running lights don’t blink or light at all , thanks!
  • stevepetstevepet Posts: 39Member
    What type of flasher can are you using?  Make sure front lights are grounded well. On one side of mine I have had to run a seperate wire and ground to body. 
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @stevepet I’m using a flasher that I got from Napa, there the only ones around here that can get that kind of thing in (that I know of).
  • 50C8DAN50C8DAN Posts: 2,276Senior Contributor
    Not to get too deep in the weeds here but there are a number of issues if you are going back to 6V.  The good news is you kept the original wiring harness that can handle the higher current load with 6V.  However, most likely every light bulb, relay (overdrive?), and possibly gauges have been converted to 12V and will definitely not function correctly on 6V.
  • KdancyKdancy Posts: 2,482Senior Contributor
    edited September 1
    Note from Lance Walker concerning original wiring -
    Hudson used steel stranded wire covered with a lacqured cloth covering with various colors and chevrons for the differing circuits. They were bad about corroding and building up  resistance. The insulation flaked off and caused shorts and fires. The wire that Rhode Island Wiring supplies is copper stranded ,plastic insulated and cloth covered. Matches the original very well.           
     
    (I would never trust the original cloth covered wire, I saw a Studebaker almost burn up due to the original wiring, dash started smoking and I quickly pulled the battery cable off, then installed a whole new harness)
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @50C8DAN The car was a crappy “conversation” to 12v , nothing in the dash worked other than the gas gauge . It blew up a starter bendix the 3rd day I owned the car . It was just cheaper and easier to go back to 6 and I’m somewhat of an individual who believes in they built it that way why change it if it works. Also the bulbs that where in it where still 6v that’s how lazy they where .

    @Kdancy I’ve already had a problem with a small single wire fire, cought under the dash whilst driving . I’d like to replace it but it’s a small fortune to replace said harness. I heard about something similar with another stude , friend of mine in eastern Colorado told me about. 
    Any idea what might be causing my problems, other than what’s already been mentioned?
    Thanks! 
    -Blake
  • cheyenne7271cheyenne7271 Posts: 310Member
    Start w simple things, check all of your connections and make sure they are clean. Also try a new flasher, might have a defective new one. Front and rear bulbs should be 1154s. As Kdancy said, the original wiring this old is going to be questionable, but make sure yiu get any bad spots heat shrinked and/ or taped. 
  • GeoffGeoff Posts: 4,259Senior Contributor
    Physically wire  the front wiring to the  bulbs and see if they work.  If not you have bad ground.   If any of the bulbs are faulty, or not grounded, the flasher will not work.  that is how they are designed, so you know they are not working.  it is feasible to build an electronic flasher, but  the originals are designed  to work with the full resistance of both bulbs.  if that resistance is less, through a blown bulb, it will flash either very fast, or not at all. 
  • eddiehudsoneddiehudson Posts: 37Member
    1968 Echlin catalog - Flashers

    1940 - 52 Echlin 535
    1953 - 54 Echlin 261 Fixed Load


  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    Thank you all! 
    I will go start looking at all that right now!
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @eddiehudson, I have the 535 in the car now. Where do I find the 261? Quick google search showed nothing .
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    It may muddy the waters, but I've been using a P229D in mine with zero issues. Those are still out there, but not cheap.
    I was looking in the manual for that 261 number and didn't find any reference to the flasher part number. There is an interesting note in the troubleshooting section, however. It suggests checking the front bulbs to ensure they aren't inserted backwards placing the parking filament in the turn circuit and vice versa. Interesting. I'd never noticed you could insert those in two different ways in that housing.
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @superwasp , those bulbs are 1154s is it even possible to mess that up? Could the base have moved in the socket not allowing the contacts to meet?
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    Right? I thought the idea behind that bulb was you couldn't reverse them like that. I wonder if there is enough play in the base you could, potentially, wrench it in there backward. Again, I've never really paid that much attention. May be worth looking at them to be sure the PO didn't do just that.
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    Definitely something to look at for sure.
    thanks!
  • lostmindlostmind Posts: 1,388Expert Adviser
    I've seen many problems with turn signals traced to a single filament bulb in a dual filament socket . If it's getting hot , it's overloaded or shorting to ground.
    Check the junction blocks for the wiring near the radiator, they usually fray there first.
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @lostmind , I know for certain there is 1154s in those sockets because I replaced them when I converted back to 6v. I have tried to wrap all the frayed wire housing with 33 electrical tape . The part that is getting hot (I haven’t checked the bulbs ) but the flasher is quite hot after 10sec of the switch being thrown .
    -Blake
  • m_mmanm_mman Posts: 11Member
    edited September 3
    Turn signal flasher basics.  

    Power comes from the battery through the switch to the bulb. Between the battery and the switch is the flasher.

    A flasher actually works like a circuit breaker. You move the switch and power is sent to the front & rear bulbs.
    The current passing through the flasher and heats up a little piece of metal. The metal gets hot enough to sag and bend away. This opens the circuit and stops power from flowing to the bulbs. 
    The little piece of metal then cools and the spring action it has, causes it to fall back and complete the circuit and send power to the bulbs again.  
    Opening & closing (and clicking as it does) is what causes the "flash". 
    A functioning flasher will feel "hot" but so hot that it starts a fire.

    When turn signals dont flash it is because of only a few problems. 
    1. No power going the the flasher and switch. A test light will show you if you have good power on one side of the flasher (blown fuse?)

    2. No power to the bulbs. Broken wires.. . . Remove the bulb(s) use your test light to see if there is power at the little button at the bottom of the socket.  (there should be 2 buttons inside - one for the brake/turn light and one for the tail/parking part of the bulb. 

    3 BAD GROUNDS AT THE BULB AND SOCKET!!!!   This is real common!!  the lens allows water into the light and corrodes the socket and bulb. Remove the bulb and clean off the crud and use a brush etc. to clean out the socket. 
    It is also possible that the socket itself is not grounded through the parking-tailight and the body. Again look for rust and crud in that area sand and make sure there is no paint either. You want shinny metal to metal contact. 

    A well functioning system should stop flashing if one bulb burns out. (safety feature tells you that there is a bad bulb) 
    If you add additional bulbs (like plugging in a trailer) There is more current drawn in the system and the flasher (bulbs) flash much faster. (reason that there are "heavy duty" flashers, they dont speed up with trailer lights) 

    All the other stuff that has been said about old cloth wiring is true but when the wires are good this is how the turn signals should work. 

    Good choice in making it 6 volt again. Before any modifications are made on a car you should get the original parts working first. Or any diagnosis will be even more confusing. 

  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @m_mman thank you a great deal ! I’m going to save that for my personal records if you don’t mind ?!
  • eddiehudsoneddiehudson Posts: 37Member
    Try another flasher. Most of the new stuff is chinese made junk.
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    Hmm. None of us asked. Did the first flasher behave the exact same way or did you replace it for a different reason? 
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    I replaced it cause I belive the last one was one of the few 12v replacements.

    I’m very tempted to just get a nos Tung Sol
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    If you have more 6v bulbs you could fab up a bench test to see if that 535 works out of the car at all. 
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @superwasp I checked the other flasher unit and it wanted to work more than the new 535 . Could I have a current problem? I have 6v going to the flasher I know . I have an old amp gauge that works shall I try that ?
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    That's very possible. If there is enough oxidation in the wires it could certainly impact the current. Doesn't your volt meter do amps as well? That would likely be much more accurate than the gauge. 
    Does one turn side behave differently than the other? If not, your issue may be upstream of the flasher rather than down.
  • 53NamedGeorge53NamedGeorge Posts: 16Member
    @superwasp the right flashes more than the left 
    how many amps should be going to the relay ?
    thanks!
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 184Member
    So, this is my pre-coffee calculation. You might check my math. 1154 is 3w, the indicator 55 bulb is a bit less at 2.8w. Two 1154s and the 55 give you 8.8 watts at 6v. That shoooould be about 1.48 amps per side. Not very much, so I'd try using a digital meter with the flasher bridged since some digitals struggle with pulsing current. 
  • ToddhToddh Posts: 108Member
    Kdancy said:
    Note from Lance Walker concerning original wiring -
    Hudson used steel stranded wire covered with a lacqured cloth covering with various colors and chevrons for the differing circuits. They were bad about corroding and building up  resistance. The insulation flaked off and caused shorts and fires. The wire that Rhode Island Wiring supplies is copper stranded ,plastic insulated and cloth covered. Matches the original very well.           
     
    (I would never trust the original cloth covered wire, I saw a Studebaker almost burn up due to the original wiring, dash started smoking and I quickly pulled the battery cable off, then installed a whole new harness)
    I have never encountered  “steel” electrical wire in any Hudson I’ve owned (pre-1948).  What I do see is copper stranded wire with each strand individually tinned.  It was done to reduce tarnish and embrittlement of the conductors.  I can see where someone would mistake it for “steel” in appearance.  The lacquered cotton insulation does become brittle and deteriorate.  Best money spent on your old car is to replace all questionable or damaged wiring and ensure you have good clean mechanical connections.  Star washers are handy for that purpose.  Also 6 volt requires at least one step heavier gauge wire/cable than 12 volt.  
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