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vintaylor

Wiring harness - Repair or Replace?

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Hi Vin,

You will still need to use Wiring diagram for colour codes. Loom is in plastic package, have not yet got round to fitting as have just had to replace entire plywood bulkhead. According to Steve at S and J all connectors are there. Only minor modification may be required for light pod motors. Will let you know when I get round to electrics, should be soon as need to rewire partially prior to putting body back on chasis.

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I'm going to modify my original as there are a number of places the original wiring is lacking e.g. relays for the electric windows and some relays for the lights are a must for me.

 

Paul.


Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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hmm still not sure what to do .. my just throw in the towel and get a new replacement from SJ's as they come read with all connectors


Vin Taylor

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If your not in a rush will tell you exactly how good the new harness is after fitting.

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Got loads of other things to do .. so I would be happy to await the feedback.

 

I have zero experience with electrics :)


Vin Taylor

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Hi Vin,

Nothing's simple with and S1! Have inspected new harness against old. The harness was supplied by S and J. The good points. The colour coding on the wires appears correct. It has all connectors are there except one white plastic one which has been replaced by spade contractors. It's all new and obviously the wires are unused and excellent condition, as are all connectors. The bad points. The harness is not identical to the original. Some of the branches are in slightly different positions and the lengths vary. The wire gauge used is different from the original, I have not checked every wire for the correct gauging, but assume it's correctly guaged. Steve told me I may have to modify the headlight circuit. It has the Veglia connectors. Have a look at the picture.post-17315-0-37164900-1405748622.jpg The keen eyed amongst you will notice the yellow and purple wire is missing! This is for the fasten belts light. Phoned S and J, they say not all cars have fasten belt light fitted and that's why there's no wire? Of course I can get this harness working, but there is a chance there might be problems with it that go beyond the light and belt circuits. Steve at S An J offered a refund. Now in a dilemma. Have to decide today as need to get harness back in car and body back on chasis. Steve says he has fitted this harness before. Might just fit and see what happens?

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Shortly after posting this thought to myself build don't talk! So have started to install new harness. Measurements are different to original but all colours in rear are correct and the rear section is in, pretty easy. Difficult to cock up as wires appear where they are needed.

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My original S1 harness has a couple of wires that have melted the insulation so I hope they've uprated those that were never up to the job. Mine has a purple wire from the fuse box that goes to the headlamp motor (I think?) which was so melted there was nothing left of the insulation on most of it.

 

I suspect (don't know for sure) that the SJ loom is probably made by Auto Sparks?

 

Probably wise to carry a fire extinguisher anyway - it's a Lotus!

 

Paul.

Edited by Paul Coleman

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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If anyone is trying to fit one of these harnesses this is what I have found so far. Rear lights, number plate lights installed. Colour coding is textbook. The earthing circuit is not provided. So for each rear light cluster you have to solder a chain of earths that goes between each bulb and the earth on the loom. The wire spacing from the bulkhead entry to the rear right light is shorter that the original. The loom had to be moved to reach the rear right light cluster. The loom is longer on the other side of the branch than the original, so hopefully enough reach to install the fuse holder at the front of the car. Being new all looks pretty good!

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Would you still recommend getting one?

 

I have no clue when it comes to electrics .. not sure if I'd be cable to wiring it up


Vin Taylor

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So far, There is still much less work in this than making a new one. If you repair the old to do it properly you would have to determine the guage of each wire and inspect and resistance test it. Replacing any worn or heat damaged wires. So far this has been pretty quick and easy. It follows the wiring diagram colours of my original harness. If the loom doesn't,t reach far enough forward will have to extend the light cluster circuit. This is still easy compared to the refurb job. At the moment it's like all things Lotus, not perfect but will do the job. If you wait till I do the rest will be in a better position to know which way to go.

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Hi Vin,

Have made a detailed assessment of the new harness. As your car is an S2 the wiring harness provided should include all of the necessary wires, colour coding and sockets needed for a simple plug together fit. I think I would recommend this method even if you have to add the fasten belts wire. It's got to be better and easier than making your own harness or up dating your old one. I have found problems with my S1 harness as my car is a late s1. It has twin pod motors and twin heater motors. This was not allowed for in the new s1 harness. I will have to create new circuits to carry the extra loads so that the harness will not be overloaded. To complicate matters I do not have a circuit for a harness with Veglia guages, twin pod motors and twin blower. I will have to use the old harness as a guide but measure the increased current usage through experiment and match the new circuits. Not a quick job, but still better and quicker than making the whole thing.

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Thanks Fabian,

 

Might go down the replacement route then .. what are you installing before fitting the body back on ..

 

I've got the body off on a frame support until the rolling chassis is done


Vin Taylor

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Hi Vin,

Am installing the fuel tanks and fuel line, the rear harness the fuel pump bracket - but not the fuel pump, will do this after. Almost at the point of putting body back on just waiting for foam to arrive for the tanks. Auto sparks can make the harness or you could get it from Steve at S and J. Make sure before you buy it has the twin headlight motor and dual heater blower circuits. You then just need the circuit diagram for the colours the rest is easy. Incidentally do you have air horns on your car? Am thinking of fitting some to mine as I have the compressor and tubing. Will have to source original horns from some where.

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Hi Vin,

Have started to look at the loom in more detail. My car is an S1. The loom supplied by S and J does not allow for twin headlight motors or dual blower fan. Having looked at the original loom lotus seems to have just added extra circuits independent of the main loom and then taken power directly from the fuse box. Lucky for me an easy addition to the new loom. As I said before the wire rating on the new loom has been downgraded from the original. The wires are thinner and have lesser current ratings. Theoretically they will handle the current loads. However any modification to the new loom would easily push the wiring over its current rating. Have looked into upgrading lights to halogen. Decided to stay with sealed beams. However if Halogens are used with the same wattage as the sealed beams there should be no wiring upgrade required. Although a relay might be advisable.

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Thanks Fabian,

 

Still haven't got round to doing this.  Still have to be given a quote from the electrician, so will have to see from there.  

 

However my s2 has the dual headlamp motors.  At around €600 (probably what it would cost with shipping) it is a bit over the top to have to further modify the loom to suit my car.


Vin Taylor

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Hi Vin,

think I may have not been very clear. My harness is for an S1 with Veglia gauges. The early S1s didn't have dual blower or dual headlamp motors, so the new Harness didn't have these either. I believe an S2 harness will have wiring for dual headlamp and blowers with smith gauges, so you should not need to modify. It is an expensive route. If you do decide to use S and J you would need to confirm the harness suits your car and does not need any modifying. Cheers.

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My own advice, having redone my scirocco engine bay loom, get the kit, even if you have some work yo do on it. In the end, getting a harness with all the proper color coding is priceless.

Luc


Something I learned about cars or planes, it all works until it doesn't anymore...sometime there is no way around it!

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Looks like I'm for this job soon, as I'm doing a restoration on a fire-damaged S1. It sounds like a new harness is the way to go. I figured I'd work branch by branch, removing the old branch and sending the new branch in at that time. I'll have the body off, so hopefully that will make things easier.

 

Do you have an estimate for how many hours you have in rewiring the car, just for my planning purposes? 

 

Thanks,

Bill

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Bill have a look on my resto blog. Have finished rewiring the engine bay. Made up new wiring for fuel pump. Biggest delay ordering and waiting for colour coded wiring to arrive, as circuits are added. Can't really give estimate as am doing loom as I go, lots of other bits. All I can say is about 1/2 a day so far - as I have never rewired an Esprit before. Very simple loom, no worries. New loom is definately the quickest method but costs more. The old loom needed replacing.

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Thanks. I'll check out your blog. I haven't really given a whole lot of thought to the wiring that burnt in the fire. Figured I'd pull the body off to fix all the engine issues, and while it was off, fix the wiring. I'm not sure how much wiring was affected or runs through the engine bay. Obviously, everything for the engine, probably tail lights, etc. Will decide once I get the body off if I want to replace the entire harness, repair the wires that are there, buy the entire wiring harness and pull out what I need, or contact the supplier of the wiring harness and see if they will make the pieces that I need.

 

Any thoughts on that?

 

Bill

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Autosparks( found on the internet) make the whole harness for about £450. You still may have to modify the base harness for dual blowers, twin headlight motors, halogen bulbs etc. the best solution is a new harness but it's also the most expensive. You could repair the one you have with the same colour coded and guage wires, also available very cheaply from Autosparks, about 21p per meter. There is a colour coded wiring diagram on the forum which you might find useful. You could remake the burnt sections and rebind the harness, this repair would look as new and be much cheaper, but would take longer. Having evaluated all of this, for me, the best solution was to start again. It's a personal choice no right or wrong answer. The only thing I don't like about the Esprit wiring is it's lack of protection from the heat of the engine. Think I may cover some of the loom in heat reflective material. Good luck with the build.

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Just finished refurbishig my entire loom. I pinned it out on a board and took all of the loomtape off it. I then replaced those wires which had melted - mine had twin headlamp motors fitted to a loom which was designed to run one mortor - the live feed melted to the extent that the copper was outside of the plastic insulation!! I've uprated various things and added relays for the lights, windows and fans. I also increased some of the live feeds from 8A to 17A e.g. I now have 3 fans pulling 12A through wire that was originally rated at 8A so I've replaced that with a 17A feed. I also now have 3 fuse boxes with extra fuses for all the new feeds. Other things I added were...

bonnet foul switch

cigarette lighter/aux feed

radio feed

handbrake switch wiring

choke switch wiring

brake fluid level wiring

12V feed for the hall effect points replacement in the distributor

 

With that lot added, most of the lights on the dash should actually work!!

 

I cut off and replaced every spade, eyelet and bullet terminal on the loom but there was nothing wrong with the wire itself.

Edited by Paul Coleman

Lotus Esprit [meaning] a 1:1 scale Airfix kit with a propensity to catch fire

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