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7/23/13 10:49pm - Original Message: 'Windshield Wiper Woes'
dbarnesid
Former Member
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Boise, ID - USA

Vette(s):
1972 mille miglia red corvette convertible. This is a car currently under restoration. The pic above is of me and my Ph.D. candidate daughter. She, not my Vette, is my pride and joy. Smile...

Joined: 5/29/2013
Posts: 159
I'm a real rookie at this. I worked my way through my final year of college at an American Oil station in 1972. And we did a good number of car repairs when stations still did that sort of thing. (Fitting that I now own a 1972 vette.) But that was a LONG time ago. So if you answer my question assume please that I know next to nothing about electrical components. I don't know what they're called, what they look like or where they're located. And yes, I ordered a repair manual but I ordered it through Amazon... and it takes 2 months to get the book. Sheesh...

I took the car to my mechanic yesterday. He turned on the wipers to see if they worked. They didn't. I got in the car and turned on the wipers and they worked. Sort of. He had to help the door up but the wipers did function. (Important background information.)

I recently refurbished my gauge bezel. It looks great. But I found that the wires for the wiper switch are just too short and my hands can barely attach the wires to the switch during bezel installation. So, tonight, I spliced in three four inch sections of wire. One for each of the wiper switch contacts. Then I went about testing the switch. 

Here's what happened. The wipers don't work and the door won't open. Not at all. I tested the power to the switch since I figured that my splices didn't work. But I think I did no harm. There are two blue wires leading to the switch. One dark blue and one light blue. Then, on the third terminal (center), there is a black wire with a white stripe.

I turned on the car and tested the wires. There is power to the switch at both of the blue wires. Then, when I move the switch post to the center position power comes on to the black center wire. 

I guess this is what's supposed to happen (but I don't know for sure) and I doubt that I did any damage to the switch or the wires. But I thought I'd ask. And, if I didn't do anything wrong... what the heck is going on with the wipers and what do you all suggest?

This is not urgent, I guess, since the weatherstripping is trash and the windshield header on my convertible is having cancer surgery in a couple of months. So no wet weather driving any time soon. Still... I'd sure like some advice.

Sorry for the extraordinarily long post. I think it's frustration rearing its ugly head. Embarrassed




|UPDATED|7/23/2013 7:49:48 PM (AZT)|/UPDATED|


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7/23/13 11:05pm - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
Norsky Lifetime Member
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Twin Lakes, CO - USA

Vette(s):
SOLD - "The Toy" - 1970 Convertible
SOLD - "The Beast" - 1990 ZR-1 (#682)
"BLKBRRD" - 1978 Trans Am, 400ci/285hp, 4 spd, Black w/black interior, Hurst t-tops

Joined: 1/23/2002
Posts: 6712
The wiper door can be a real P.I.T.B.  There are multiple points that have to be in sync for it all to work plus you need to have good vacuum.  I don't know that any repair manual is going to have all the info you need to chase down the problems you're running into.  I'm not an electrical guru either but the splices you made sure don't sound like they should be causing you trouble.
 
I'd look into getting an AIM (Assembly Instruction Manual) as they really detail out the contruction of the car and have complete wiring diagrams.
 
Good luck!


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Jim Olson 

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7/23/13 11:18pm - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
dbarnesid
Former Member
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Boise, ID - USA

Vette(s):
1972 mille miglia red corvette convertible. This is a car currently under restoration. The pic above is of me and my Ph.D. candidate daughter. She, not my Vette, is my pride and joy. Smile...

Joined: 5/29/2013
Posts: 159
Thanks for the kind response.

I also own a 2010 BMW 328i and I know if I spliced some wires on that beast it would be a $125 service charge just to clear the computer error codes. No lie. 

In this case I don't think the 72 even knows I was in the vicinity. I love old cars... Big smile


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7/24/13 12:39am - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
F4Gary Gold Member
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Grapevine, TX - USA

Vette(s):
1972 LT-1 convertible with factory air.

Joined: 8/26/2006
Posts: 862
There is a vacuum switch attached to the back of the Tach.  Power has to go to that, I think, in order to send vacuum to the door actuator.

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7/24/13 7:31am - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
Posts: 19449
The wiper switch itself HAS to be grounded for the wipers to work. It is grounded thru the bezel when properly screwed into the dash. If you are testing the wipers without the gauge cluster screwed to the dash, they will not work. You can run a ground wire to one of the screws that holds the switch to the bezel, as a lot of folks do, as a redundant ground, if you want. 
As far as them not opening/functioning properly otherwise, as has been mentioned, there are several other switches that have to be properly synchronized.
I have some wiper/headlight troubleshooting info I can send you...Thumbs Up


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Joel Adams
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"Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comforting to cry in a CORVETTE than in a Kia"
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7/24/13 8:31am - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
dbarnesid
Former Member
- Send Private Message


Boise, ID - USA

Vette(s):
1972 mille miglia red corvette convertible. This is a car currently under restoration. The pic above is of me and my Ph.D. candidate daughter. She, not my Vette, is my pride and joy. Smile...

Joined: 5/29/2013
Posts: 159
Doh... Of course! I actually considered the grounding issue but dismissed the idea. It seems that grounding is a huge issue with these glass cars. Another lesson learned. I'd much appreciate any material you have. Thanks!

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7/24/13 1:00pm - Reply: 'Re: Windshield Wiper Woes'
Adams' Apple Lifetime Member
Lifetime Member
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Duncanville, TX - USA

Vette(s):
#1-1974 L-48 4spd Cp Med Red Metallic/Black deluxe int w/AC/tilt/tele./p/w-p/b/ Am-Fm/map light National/Regional/Chapter NCRS "Top Flight" #2-1985 Bright Red/Carmine Cp.L-98/auto Member: NCRS, NCRS Texas, Corvette Legends of Texas

Joined: 11/8/2003
Posts: 19449
"You've got MAIL!!" Thumbs Up

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Joel Adams
C3VR Lifetime Member #56    
My Link


(click for Texas-sized view!)
             NCRS

"Money can't buy happiness -- but somehow it's more comforting to cry in a CORVETTE than in a Kia"
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