Team Chevelle banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part May's Ride of the Month Challenge!

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Still have not found the cause of my problems. I disconnected the reverse lockout rod as instructed and that solved the problem. Does this mean my problem lies within the steering column itself or is that just a hunch?

To refresh any memories: with parking lights or headlights on as I shift into reverse the dash lights go off, high beam indicator comes on and tachometer, temp and fuel gauge go dead. After fully engaged into reverse, everything goes back to normal.

Should have been an electrician!



------------------
Scott Wolfe
Leck Kill, Pa.
70 Chevelle SS L34
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,762 Posts
So now by moving the floor shifter, nothing dies. Correct? Did you try to move the column by hand afterwards? Did it have the same effect as before? Or has the problem disappeared altogether?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Didn't try turning the column by hand with the rod disconnected but I will do that and get back to you. I hooked it back up and the problem persists.

Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Disconnected the rod this morning before work and when I turn the column with my hands I still have the problem. Don't know if this means anything but with the rod hooked up the steering column turns approximately 1/8 of a turn and the dash lights go out at the beginning of this 1/8 of a turn. With the rod disconnected I can manually turn the column another 1/8 of a turn and the dash lights will go out both at the beginning of the turn and then again at the end of the turn?

I will be forever indebted to you if you can help me solve this one!! Sort of sounds and feels like something may be binding in the column but maybe that's normal?

Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,762 Posts
Hang in there. You are half way to finding it. By disconnecting the rod between the column and transmission the problem is with the column and not with the transmission. Let's find out which column wire is causing the problem. There isn't that many to look at.

1, Disconnect the wires from the neutral safety/back-up light switch. Guessing you only have the back-up connector on there. However, pull everything off and leave them off.
2, Move the column and check for gage movement. Don't step on the foot brake while doing this. If it still acts up, this is not the problem.
3, Pull the hazard flasher can out of the fuse block and leave it out.
4, Move the column and check for gage movement. Don't step on the foot brake while doing this. If it still acts up, this is not the problem.
5, Remove the turn signal flasher can. This is under the dash between the column and the radio. Leave it out.
6, Move the column and check for gage movement. Don't step on the foot brake while doing this. If it still acts up, this is not the problem.
7, Remove the harness connector off the horn relay. Horn relay is on the driver's side of the core support near the radiator.
8, Move the column and check for gage movement. Don't step on the foot brake while doing this. If it still acts up, this is not the problem.

One of the above items should stop your gages from dancing as you move the column. They are the only power sources I can think of that are in that area. Once you figure out which one it is, the answer should be clearer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,031 Posts
Almost sounds like a frayed (fraid?) harness in the column. Did you try wiggling the wires under the column where they come out from under the cup?

------------------
64 2 Door 400SB/TH350 (actually IN the driveway!)
http://users.rcn.com/chevello
"You laugh because I am different. I laugh because you are all the same."
TC Member #1155
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
chevello,
I did try wiggling those suckers but with no changes.
John,
I did everything you mentioned in your last post including the 3 connectors on the horn relay with the problem persisting. I know I probably shouldn't have but I also unplugged a 4-wire connector that went to a black box beside the horn relay! I didn't know what it was but the connections were sort of corroded and it didn't stop the problem anyway!
But listen, I then noticed that the horn relay has 2 screws on it and there was a red and black wire with terminals on the end of them under the screw towards the radiator. When I disconnected them and tried to turn the lights on, nothing worked on the dash.
What's my next step?

Thanks,

Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,762 Posts
Well, I never give up but still not sure what is going on. You have the rod removed from the column. You have all the wires removed from the neutral safety/back-up switch on the column. Should have 4 switch contacts with nothing on them. No power to anything on the turn signal switch.
Without a better thought at the moment, I'll suggest unplugging the large strip connector for the turn signal switch and trying the test again.
The wires you took loose under the horn relay screw are the power wires for the whole car. The large red one that goes into the harness bundle powers everything. Need to screw those back down. Nothing works without those being connected.
Can't think of anything else attached to the column except the ignition switch. Can't see that as a problem but let's try unplugging the turn signal switch first.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
John,
Will hook the red and black wire back up to horn relay and proceed to unhook the turn signal switch. Where exactly do I find this switch? How many or what color wires to it?

I did leave everything else disconnected per your instructions including both the hazard can at the fuse box and the turn signal flasher can up under the dash.

Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
John,

Sounds like you scratch your head more often than not! Do you have any hair left?

Was that just a thought you had about something "pulling the ignition switch rod" or what exactly were you trying to tell me?

I'll unhook that switch tonight on my way home from work and let you know Monday. I'm off tomorrow for all things but "FLAGDAY"!

After I unplug this turn signal strip under the steering column, are there any other thoughts in your "scratched up and bleeding head" as far as the next step? I'll have all weekend to tinker at it!

Thanks,

Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,762 Posts
Not sure where I'm trying to go with this. You have already disconnected everything that has anything to do with the column shifter. After you pull the turn signal connector, there will be no wires attached to the column except for the ignition switch wires. I can't see how they have any bearing on this. I have a loose column sitting outside and really can't see what the ignition switch has to do with the column shifter. Obviously there is a problem though.
I assume you still have the shifter lockout rod disconnected from the column under the hood. After you pull off the turn signal switch, try moving the column shifter again. Suspect that your gage problem will still exist. It should because you already removed all power sources to it.
Perhaps its time to drop the column down and maybe take a look up side the column shifter area.
1, Set the e-brake. Remove the lower access panel below the column.
2, I can't see if your car has a shift indicator in the dash. If it does, you need to rotate the column shifter into the lowest gear. This way you can access the Philips screw on the right bottom of the shift indicator. Remove the screw and slide off the clip and draw string. Otherwise it will break when you lower the column.
3, With the column in park, remove the 2 9/16 inch nuts that hold the column up to the dash. Carefully lower the column down and rest the wheel on the seat.
4, With the key to on, rotate the column shifter again. See if it makes the gages dance again. It should because we haven't done anything about it. At this time the only wires attached to the column should be the ones plugged into the ignition switch.
5, If the gages are still dancing, see if the thin ignition switch rod is moving. This thin rod goes from under the column shifter to the ignition switch. It should not have any bows or bends in it and lay fairly flat along the column. I have not seen a column shifter strike an ignition rod while it was moving. I'm just guessing here.
6, If the gages are still dancing as you move the column shifter, try moving the ignition rod up and down. It shouldn't move. It's held in place by the key switch on one side. The ignition switch screws should be tight.
Anyway, a real WAG here. Without any wires on the column except the ignition wires, must have something to do with the ignition switch. Maybe the rod is being bumped and moving the ignition switch contacts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
826 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
John,
I didn't read all of your post yet but my car is a 4-spd with console. The steering column spins when I put it in reverse to allow me to get the key out of the ignition. I'm only here until 4:00 pm today but didn't know if that would change any thoughts you had?

Scott
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top