64 Malibu SS dash harness problems - Chevelle Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical problems.

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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 26th, 20, 4:37 PM Thread Starter
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64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

I'm working on my 64 SS and need to replace my hacked up original harness. Rather than spend $450 on a new one I thought I would try this really clean used one that I've had for a few years. Unknown number one is I don't know if it is from a 64 or 65. It came with a 64 parts car but had already been removed. Second possible issue is my car is a 4 speed and this harness is from an automatic (has the automatic console harness still attached to the dash harness).

Since I have no clue if this is a good harness other than it looks clean, I thought I would temporarily lay it in the floor board and bolt the fuse block in and attach the forward harness and engine harness and do some testing. I have power at the fuse block, but when I try my switch I get no cranking. At the switch it has power at the red wire and when cranking power at the purple wire.

I then try the lights and have power at the headlight switch but no lights come on.

I then took my old harness and plugged it in similarly (laying in the floorboard), and cranking and lights work. One difference is I haven't removed the instrument cluster from the old harness.

Thoughts on things to try and check? Thanks in advance. Rodney
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 3:37 AM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Heres a few diagrams to start. I don't have many photos of 64-65 harness, so if you can post some as we go that would be cool. I'm going back to your original post and see what I can come up with.

The last 2 are my half-finished mickey mouse color jobs. If you download them you can enlarge them.

Purchasing a color wiring diagram for your year would help make your task easier.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 4:06 AM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

For this part...

." I have power at the fuse block, but when I try my switch I get no cranking. At the switch it has power at the red wire and when cranking power at the purple wire."

The purple wire runs from the ignition switch to the neutral safety switch (auto harness only) then to the starter solenoid. My guess is that it's not cranking because the neutral safety switch is open. So if you were to find the place in the harness where the switch connects, you can butt splice or jumper the 2 purple wires together at that connector. When you turn the key to start, check for power at the starter solenoid purple wire,

At the moment, I'm not seeing a problem with this "One difference is I haven't removed the instrument cluster from the old harness." Unless the auto harness that you want to use is from a non SS Chevelle then I'll have to dig in and check it out. I'm not too familiar with the differences in the SS or standard 64-65 Chevelles. I know the SS has 2 extra wires in the harness to operate the ammeter shunt (black and a black with a white tracer)
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 9:09 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Al, Thanks so much for your reply! The cranking issue was with the neutral safety switch. Closing that resolved that problem.

Still no lights. I checked two different switches. One with the switch on I have power coming in at the red wire and power going out at the blue and black wire. The other switch power only at the red wire. No lights with either switch. Any thoughts on what to check next? Thanks again so much for your help thus far. Rodney
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 12:27 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Attach your grounds and see if your lights work then. Terry
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 1:09 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

The power coming from the black/ltblue wire goes to the dimmer switch which switches power to the high or low beams. If power is coming out at the switch, check at the floor dimmer switch to see if power is making it there. Then check to see that power is coming out of te dimmer switch terminals. One will light the low beams and the other the high beans headlights only. The red wire only supplies power to the headlights through a circuit breaker that is internal to the switch.

The other switch sounds toasted if you have power coming in the red and not coming out of lt blue terminals on the switch.

You need the power to come into the black orange wire to run your tail and park lights. This power comes through a fuse at the fuse box. Check the tail light fuse for power at both lugs of the fuse. Flip the fuse box over and look at the back if you see no power. You might find a poor connection at the terminals on back of the fuse box. If you still see no power, follow the wire (I think it's red or orange in 64 ) see if you can find a break or bad connection.

The purple wire goes to park lamps and brown to taillights. With the wiring as it came from the factory, first pull out of h/l switch turns on tail and park lamps. Full pull out of h/l switch turns on headlights and taillights, but parking lights are not lit. There is an easy mod to keep the park lights on with the headlights on. It's listed in stickies above. We can get to that if you wish once we get the lights working properly.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 1:30 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

To do the full-time parking conversion reference the above attachment. You just release the purple terminal from the connector and install it into the open terminal space on the connector in the lower right of the picture. This connects the park lights to the taillight circuit and your park lights will come on in both outward h/l switch positions. A detail explanation is here. https://www.chevelles.com/forums/27-...photos%7D.html
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 1:46 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by 68-13427 View Post
Attach your grounds and see if your lights work then. Terry
I think the lack of ground to the 64 h/l switch will only affect the dome light function through the turning of the knob. I'm pretty sure the dash lights will still work since the bulb is grounded in its socket.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 1:57 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Thanks guys. I think I'm somewhat back to where I started. In doing some testing across the fuses, the taillights came on (I don't currently have headlight bulbs in). It appears there is some rust on the fuse connectors that I need to clean off.

Previous owner had done some engineering to remove the backup light lens and replace with regular lens and then some special wiring to have tail and blinkers in the upper lens and brake lights in the lower. I have replaced the ribbon and rear harnesses hoping that I would have tail, brake, and blinkers as from the factory. So far no brake lights.

To have brake lights is there anything else I need to plug other than the switch under the column?
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 2:19 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by DUTCH MAX HEADWORK View Post
To do the full-time parking conversion reference the above attachment. You just release the purple terminal from the connector and install it into the open terminal space on the connector in the lower right of the picture. This connects the park lights to the taillight circuit and your park lights will come on in both outward h/l switch positions. A detail explanation is here. https://www.chevelles.com/forums/27-...photos%7D.html
or here.......https://www.chevelles.com/forums/27-...itch-info.html
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 27th, 20, 3:30 PM
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rodney View Post
Thanks guys. I think I'm somewhat back to where I started. In doing some testing across the fuses, the taillights came on (I don't currently have headlight bulbs in). It appears there is some rust on the fuse connectors that I need to clean off.

Previous owner had done some engineering to remove the backup light lens and replace with regular lens and then some special wiring to have tail and blinkers in the upper lens and brake lights in the lower. I have replaced the ribbon and rear harnesses hoping that I would have tail, brake, and blinkers as from the factory. So far no brake lights.

To have brake lights is there anything else I need to plug other than the switch under the column?
The turn signal switch needs to be connected.

You also need power to the brake lt fuse. Then check to see if you have power to the brake lt switch. Then activate the switch you'll see power at both terminals of the switch. I'm sort of suspecting some corrosion/contact issues ear the fuse box. So check both sides of the fuse lugs for power. Same story for the taillights. If you see power under the dash and fuse box, work your way out through the bulkhead connector and check for power coming through. Bad connections here can cause issues distributing power to the light harness,

The blk and orange circuit that supplies the power to the headlight switch for taillights also supplies power to the brake light switch. So I suspect the issue is in powering the black and orange at the fuse box. Figure that out, get power to the h/l switch and your brake lights might work if the turnsignal switch is hooked up and the brake fuse checks ok.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 28th, 20, 8:08 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

I have power at the black and orange wire at the brake light switch. The black and white wire leaving the brake light switch looks questionable. I'm going to pull the harness out, trace the black and white wire, and clean the fuse block area.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 30th, 20, 9:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Wanted to post an update. Cleaned the fuse block and repaired the black and white wire at tye brake light switch.

I now have lights and blinkers. But I don't have a right hand side brake light - even though I have a right hand turn signal.

One goofy thing that happened when I didn't have the right hand socket plugged in good and turned on the right signal, both left and right signals blinked.

Thoughts on why I don't have a right hand brake light???

Thanks, Rodney
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old Mar 31st, 20, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 64 Malibu SS dash harness problems

Appears to have just been a connection issue at ribbon harness. Thanks for all the help!
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