What is this harness and where does it go? - Chevelle Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical problems.

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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 12, 3:26 PM Thread Starter
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Jeff
 
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What is this harness and where does it go?

Jeff a Newbie here- starting to get into my 1971 chevelle Malibu and found this harness connector tied in a knot behind master cylinder.. Anyone know what it is? Also where is it supposed to be connected? Click image for larger version

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Jeff B - truly a NEWBIE - knew absolutely nothing about cars at all - learning as I go. Thanks in advance for your help and patience.


MY PROJECT CAR
71 Malibu originally had 307 and sweep style dash but now it has a 383 and SS dash. Factory AC, HEI, TH350 updated wiring throughout
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 12, 5:42 PM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

Windshield Washer Motor.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 12, 7:11 PM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

*hint*
Does your heater's fan work correctly on all speeds???????

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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 12th, 12, 9:41 PM Thread Starter
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Jeff
 
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Thank you both very much... I had my first moment of understanding of the wiring diagram... Looks like this weekend I will be tracing wires and rewiring them....

Here is a picture of the wiper motor the way it's wired currently...Click image for larger version

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Jeff B - truly a NEWBIE - knew absolutely nothing about cars at all - learning as I go. Thanks in advance for your help and patience.


MY PROJECT CAR
71 Malibu originally had 307 and sweep style dash but now it has a 383 and SS dash. Factory AC, HEI, TH350 updated wiring throughout
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 12, 10:22 AM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

It's the connector for the CEC solenoid.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 12, 10:40 AM Thread Starter
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So as I did more digging- I found these 3 wires taped together. Is the best thing to just go through and re-wire everything according to the wiring diagram and then begin troubleshooting from there? Sorry electrical is not my strong suit...Click image for larger version

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Jeff B - truly a NEWBIE - knew absolutely nothing about cars at all - learning as I go. Thanks in advance for your help and patience.


MY PROJECT CAR
71 Malibu originally had 307 and sweep style dash but now it has a 383 and SS dash. Factory AC, HEI, TH350 updated wiring throughout
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 12, 7:10 PM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

if your time is worth more than 25 cents per hour I'd buy a a new underhood and engine harness from AAW. Top quality stuff and regular supporters of guys here. They can update the harness for things like an HEI, electric choke carb and internal regulator alternator. Plug and play, no BS. They're on here all the time.

There's another vendor, M&H, that has similar quality product. They don't logon here and help guys.

I'd avoid any others, especially cheap ebay stuff and anything that might be Painful.

This stuff will reduce your work time from days of frustration to minutes. Don't ask how I know this.

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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 12, 7:15 PM Thread Starter
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Jeff
 
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Great.. Thank you for that... I am all about doing it easy...


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Jeff B - truly a NEWBIE - knew absolutely nothing about cars at all - learning as I go. Thanks in advance for your help and patience.


MY PROJECT CAR
71 Malibu originally had 307 and sweep style dash but now it has a 383 and SS dash. Factory AC, HEI, TH350 updated wiring throughout
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 13th, 12, 8:50 PM
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Greg.
 
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Mobley View Post
if your time is worth more than 25 cents per hour I'd buy a a new underhood and engine harness from AAW. Top quality stuff and regular supporters of guys here. They can update the harness for things like an HEI, electric choke carb and internal regulator alternator. Plug and play, no BS. They're on here all the time.

There's another vendor, M&H, that has similar quality product. They don't logon here and help guys.

I'd avoid any others, especially cheap ebay stuff and anything that might be Painful.

This stuff will reduce your work time from days of frustration to minutes. Don't ask how I know this.
Agree with Tom 100% on getting a new Engine/Headlight Harnesses from AAW .

Because some of those wires look like they are a fire waiting to happen when you hookup power to them.

67 Chevelle Malibu SS Cdn
Born 283 / PG / A51
468/TH400 2,500 stall/ S60 3.70 Gs
Prev Best on M/T ET S/S #3454 street Tires/Dress 2018/05/20
60' = 1.664
1/8 = 7.532 et / 91 mph
1/4 = 11.814 et / 115 mph
NEW Best with 3,500+ Stall TC 2019/06/23
60' = 1.561
1/8 = 7.411 et / 90.18 mph
1/4 = ??.??? et / ??? mph


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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 14th, 12, 1:45 AM Thread Starter
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Jeff
 
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Thanks for all the help... I went to the site and found what you were referring to and I'm convinced... So it got me thinking- my main 2 trouble spots are the dash and the engine wiring... I think getting a dash kit is also the way to go.. Does it make a difference which one I wire first? Should I do the engine first then the dash?

Thanks for your patience ( and advice) with all my questions..


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Jeff B - truly a NEWBIE - knew absolutely nothing about cars at all - learning as I go. Thanks in advance for your help and patience.


MY PROJECT CAR
71 Malibu originally had 307 and sweep style dash but now it has a 383 and SS dash. Factory AC, HEI, TH350 updated wiring throughout
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 15th, 12, 9:13 AM
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Keith
 
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

Hi Jeff

Glad you're trying to tackle it. Electrical is the last frontier for many Chevelle enthusiasts. It's not that hard - really.

VENDORS: I totally agree with the other guys, American AutoWire is an excellent vendor. Extremely helpful folks and a true "better than original" quality parts made in USA. M&H makes great parts as well.

THOUGHTS BEFORE YOU START

Engine harness is the easier of the two. Do it first - then decide if you want/need/are able to tackle replacing the dash harness - or whether you should just freshen and repair.

Be aware that it is a fair amount of work to replace a dash harness, including the removal of the dash. Make darned sure your dash harness is really in need of replacement before you rip it out.

If you replace the engine harness, that's a good time to upgrade your wiring for a modern ignition system and internal regulator alternator. Decide your route BEFORE you order the harness. They're different, depending on the ignition and regulator style.

Some Tips / things to consider as you work at this. I'm a Chevelle hobbyist for fun but an electrical engineer for a living, and the following is garnered from 30+ years of pretty heavy solder sniffing. :-)

This is pretty long, but I promise you it is worth the read if you are serious about automotive electrical system restoration on your Chevelle.

PRESUMING YOU ALREADY KNOW SOME STUFF - HAVE A SCHEMATIC - ARE NOT AN IDIOT - ETC. :-)

TOOLS:

If you find your existing dash harness worthy of salvation, the invest the time and money in the right tools.
  • Correct pencil type 30w (ish) soldering iron and fine gauge electronic rosin core solder. NOT RADIO SHACK. Get a reputable brand. Get "eutectic solder" if you can. 63/37 lead/tin.
  • You'll want an DVM meter AND a test light. (Both are useful, depending on the situation) Inexpensive DVM is o.k. for this
  • An LED hiker's headlamp is essential.
  • a supply of shrink tube, (correct color is stealth and nice, but black will do)
  • Harness wrap tape (cold shrink tape will work)
  • IMPORTANT that you have the correct crimper tool for the contacts. About CRIMPERS: I do NOT mean a GENERIC RADIO SHACK MULTI CRIMPER...O.K? If you don't have a real crimping tool DESIGNED FOR THESE STYLE CONNECTORS, that's o.k. Simply plan on soldering any new connector terminals to the wire as well. forget crimping them with pliers or other improvised means. They'll eventually fail. Correctly soldered, they will exceed OEM connection quality.
  • A set of hard picks. Use these to "unlock" the connector contacts from the connector housings as you disassemble the connectors during restoration
  • quality miniature needle nose pliers will be highly useful as well
  • Quality aerosol contact cleaner. TIP: You can purchase Mass Air Flow sensor aerosol cleaner at most box auto stores. It's an exceptionally good "stealth" contact cleaner and won't melt your plastic. DO NOT USE WD-40, DO NOT USE Brake Cleaner, DO NOT Carb Cleaner etc. or any other aerosol cleaner containing aliphatic solvents. Aliphatic solvents will dissolve nylon parts in switches as well as many other plastic parts. This is bad. Get the correct cleaners, one with cleaner only, and one with cleaner/lube. CRC makes a good ELECTRONIC spray cleaner (not their "electric motor cleaner", but the ELECTRONIC cleaner). Forget the spray crap sold for contact cleaner at Radio Shack. It's just plain rubbing alcohol. That is worse than worthless in this application. If you troll estate sales, look for a product called "ElectroWash", in spray cans. An exceptional old school contact cleaner - no longer available.
  • A Dremel tool with a buffing tip can help you clean up hard to fix corrosion problems under the dash and in tight spaces.
  • Also, you'll want dielectric grease (for repacking the bulkhead connectors and other water-exposed connections under the hood like regulator and headlamps).
  • CONTACT ENHANCERS: I recommend using a quality contact enhancer. I use and recommend Caig Deoxit products. Properly used, I find them to be beneficial. You might also keep your eye out for bottles of "Cramolin" at estate sales. It is a fabulous old school contact enhancer/cleaner no longer available in the US. I see it every now and then.
  • scotch brite pads, which you can cut up into small shapes to buff up dull contacts in places like fuse blocks, etc.
  • a small brass wire bristle brush, hand operated, and one for your dremel.
  • Phosphoric acid is an excellent contact brightener for heavy connections. Neutralize it after use with baking soda and blow dry, followed with a cleaner/lube to wash away any moisture and residue.
  • Purple Power in a plastic bin is an excellent way to clean greasy engine harnesses.
  • Lacquer thinner is an excellent way to soften brittle harness wires and wrap tape, allowing you to bring them back to life for routing corrections, etc. Once the OEM wrap tape is clean and soft from the lacquer thinner, you can rewrap your harness with it. Note with photographs where and how it is tied off before you unwrap it.



PRACTICE:

For connector repairs on your existing dash harness, (if you go that route) buy NEW connectors from AAW. They will sell you just the blank connectors if you need to fix a few places (like a cut radio power harness or a glove box light wire that's been chopped, etc.)

Order a few spare male and female connectors when you get your parts. Practice your wiring assembly technique on a new SPARE - BEFORE you start on a real harness repair. Understanding how to correctly crimp or crimp/solder wire to the contact is essential to success.

Once you remove your old engine harness, take the time to disassemble some of the left over plugs from that junk harness. Learn how to take them apart down to the last component without destroying them. It is deceptively simple. Learn how the male and female plugs are assembled and how they make contact. Most Chevelle connectors can be successfully disassembled down to the component level without damaging them. Know how will greatly assist you when restoring a good used harness. You can very often solve "mysterious" electrical problems by disassembling, cleaning and retightening, and/or replacing just the internal contacts in your original harness connectors. Keeps the original plugs, looks totally stock, and gives you "like new" performance. In my experience, the connectors are the vast majority of the failures, after amateur chop jobs and idiot work.

HOW TO START:

STEP 1: Get your roll of black electrical tape.

STEP 2: Put it away. Proper automobile wiring harness repairs do not use adhesive backed electrical tape ANYWHERE.

Now that we have that out of the way, Inspect the under dash wiring visually, using your headlamp. Make a spread sheet of all observed physical changes/chops, and in the same spreadsheet test and list function or not of every single electrical function. every light, every switch, every blower speed, turn signal...everything.

Then, methodically go through the electrical functions of your car and test for 100% functionality. A correctly repaired OEM wiring harness with fresh or freshened up connectors will work perfectly and without complaint for EVERY SINGLE feature.

WHERE TO REPAIR:

Find your problems by first looking where others have chopped. Idiot "repairs" and chops are the most likely source of problems.

Do not ASSUME the fuse block and bulkhead connector "is fine". Disconnect, clean and polish any contact showing any signs of oxidation. Retension, as appropriate. polish/clean all fuse contacts. Test all fuses electrically - not just visually inspect. Re-grease the bulkhead connector with dielectric grease.

Do not overlook any non-factory repair. Anything with tape on it will be a do-over. If enough wire is present to allow proper routing, I cut away stubs and idiot repair remnants. I then replace the internal contact points on chopped up wires RIGHT AT THE CONNECTOR. If they've been cut and taped in an unfortunate place (far from the connector), then I restrip to fresh wire, solder and shrink tube all such connections. It takes only a moment and the connection is much more sure. (If you know how to solder) Do not attempt to solder any wire that has black tape glue residue. This is a worthless waste of time and will result in compromised solder connection. In the RARE case that you must do this due to inadequate wire length, clean the wire strands individually, as well as the wire jacket with lacquer thinner until it is perfectly clean and shiny. Brush the wire strands individually with your brass brush, if they are not bright. Then solder.


ABOUT GROUNDS
Grounding is absolutely critical to your electrical system function. It is not optional. There are many ground points supplying sub harnesses in your car. ALWAYS remove, clean to a bright shine all grounds. "All" means every single battery, engine, body, and service ground... wherever you find them. This single step will often solve MANY mystery problems on old electrical systems. Find, inspect, and clean every single one.

___________

Anyway, just some tips from an old solder sniffer. Now you see why guys say "buy a new harness", right? You'll say that too...right up to the point where you are pulling your dash to get your old harness out. :-)


Cheers!

Bryan
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 18th, 12, 11:35 AM Thread Starter
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

WOW! Words cannot express how much I appreciate all the advice...I cannot thank you enough for taking so much time out of your day to write out all of this. I am so thankful. It is so great to see that people are so willing to help out strangers - something that is not seen on a day to day basis.

I took ALL of your advice and went on an early christmas shopping spree...I cannot wait to dive in - now that I have this new found confidence and directions. I am going to replace the wire harness for the engine due to condition of many of the wires..However as I inspected my rear harness, I am going to clean it up and see what i find. I think i can save it without having to buy a new harness.

I do have 2 final questions (and then I will hopefully end this thread!!).
1. When I replace the old wire harness - should i wire the engine according to the original wire diagram and not the way it is currently wired now?
2. The engine was replaced at some time and now it is a 350 (according to the engine stamp if I am decoding it right) and has an HEI distributor..Is it possible that the reason the wiring is different than the original diagram is because of this after market engine and HEI additions?

Once again, thank you so very much for all your help and support. I really am humbled.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 24th, 12, 10:05 AM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

I would get a factory Org. engine harness. Here is how I wired my H.E.I............ Fuse box under dash..... Find a wire that is HOT on crank & run........... Then using a heavy gauge wire, Run it across the under dash area to about the middle of your car........... Lift the hood and look behind the dist.....You will find a 1/2" dia. plastic plug that holds the firewall insulation to the inside of the firewall.........Next, Cut the tip off of the plastic plug, so you have about a 1/8" hole in the end of the plug.....Next, Run your 12Vt. Ign. wire through this plastic ( insulated plug )to the HEI. I did mine this way, WHY? It located the HEI hot wire about 4" from the dist, One less wire to see under the hood. And from the fuse box inside the car to the HEI, I have an inline toggle or KILL switch to the HEI.
Hit your secret located " Kill Switch ", The hand over the keys to anyone, Yes, It will crank, BUT it will not start.
That is how I wired my HEI in my 71.
P.S. My first HEI was an off shore BRAND, DONT even go there!!!! WHY? after a tow job or two and many Modules, In a span of a few months.
I went to a Chevy dealership and bought a NEW HEI. I have not touched the CHEVY HEI for 5-6 years. Its the " Pay me now or pay me later deal ". Do it right the first time.
Bob


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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 25th, 12, 9:16 AM Thread Starter
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Jeff
 
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

Okay one last question and i think i can close this thread ( i think the horse has been beaten into submission)...I have finally traced and diagrammed every wire since none of it matches any of the wiring diagrams...

I am ordering my new engine harness from AAW next week (yeah)...So here is my question...
- The current wiring does not match any of the 4 wiring diagrams i have...When i receive the wire harness from AAW - I am assuming that i just plug it in as directed - I wont have to make any modifications will I? (If i do have to make modifications, do I wire the car the way it is now???)

Thanks for all the help....

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays to everyone and looking forward to the New Year...
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Dec 25th, 12, 11:01 AM
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Re: What is this harness and where does it go?

Good Morning Jeff.
Can you elaborate on the differences? What wiring diagram are you using and what are your observed colour differences?

There are 2 wiring harnesses but most of the colours are the same. One is for a car with gauges (round dash gauges) and for one without (sweep dash). Which dash do you have?

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