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Old 01-07-2010, 08:05 PM   #1
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1965 28' Ambassador
Irving , Texas
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Need Running Lights Working

When I purchased my 65 AS the umbilical cord was bare with no plug.Just 7 wires.
I need to trace and see if all is connected and where.There is a 4 pin with temporary tail lights and turn signals running under the belly pan.
How difficult is it to replace the whole cord and 7 pin plug?Where does it nomally run?
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Old 01-07-2010, 08:24 PM   #2
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1964 26' Overlander
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Need Running Lights Working

Greetings bwaysteve!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwaysteve View Post
When I purchased my 65 AS the umbilical cord was bare with no plug.Just 7 wires.
I need to trace and see if all is connected and where.There is a 4 pin with temporary tail lights and turn signals running under the belly pan.
How difficult is it to replace the whole cord and 7 pin plug?Where does it nomally run?
I am fairly certain that you will find that the '65 umbilical cord routing is quite similar to that on my '64 Overlander. If you look under the coach on the curbside bellypan, you should see a square/rectangular access panel that hides the junction between the coach wiring and the umbilical cord. You may find that the umbilical was abandoned for the same reason that I had to replace the umbilical on my Overlander -- age and use had worn through the insulation and I had a number of bare wires that were periodically shorting out in the old umbilical cord.

The clearance and marker lights are in all probability on a green wire -- at least that was the case with my Overlander -- You may also find that you have connection problems at the individual clearance lights themselves as the ground can prove problmeatic on a vintage coach.

Good luck with your project!

Kevin
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1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 01-07-2010, 09:39 PM   #3
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Kevin,So basically I can rewire a new cord from that point?Just tie on and pull through or use fish tape?Does it go through the frame?Sorry for the questions that seem to have obvious answers,but I am storing it on a farm and it is so cold here I have not been able to get there this week to work on it.
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:41 PM   #4
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Need Running Lights Working

Greetings bwaysteve!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwaysteve View Post
Kevin,So basically I can rewire a new cord from that point?Just tie on and pull through or use fish tape?Does it go through the frame?Sorry for the questions that seem to have obvious answers,but I am storing it on a farm and it is so cold here I have not been able to get there this week to work on it.
Yes, that is exactly what was done with my Overlander. The umbilical goes through the frame as well as the body so it can be a bear to fish -- be sure to use a heavy gauge wire or fish-tape -- liberal use of silicone spray can help ease the cable through tight spots. In my case, the new cable bundle was a bit larger than the original so the fit was very tight. Be prepared for the possibility that the wire colors on the trailer side may not be the same as those in the umbilical cord. On my coach, they were; but I am aware that on others, the colors going into the coach were different. In either case, it is a good idea to verify the purpose of each of the circuits prior to
making final connections.

The pdf file attached to this message may help with the color codes originally used in the umbilical cord -- they matched up with the functions of the wires in the coach on my '64 -- but I am aware of instances where the colors did not match up with the functions as indicated.

Good luck with your project!

Kevin
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 7wayplug1964-65--2009.pdf (28.7 KB, 47 views)
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1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 01-08-2010, 11:15 PM   #5
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1969 27' Overlander
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Kevin et al, I purchased a 69 Overlander. The brake wiring was apparently damaged by rodents. I had the brakes replaced and the wiring bundle from trailer to tow vehicle bumper. The brake lights and turn signal works on right side of trailer, only. The reverse lights or left back lights or clearance lights are not working.

Can you offer some suggestions?
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Old 01-09-2010, 07:09 AM   #6
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You can buy 7-wire cable cut to the length you need from etrailer.com. Also, when I replaced mine, I bought a connection box from VTS. Screws to frame rail and provides water resistant protection for connections between the umbilical and the trailer wiring. I installed a new type 7 blade connector. I know some think the older pin type is better, but I wanted to go with the current standard in case 1) I needed to pull the trailer with another TV and 2) I need to pull another trailer with my truck.
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Old 01-09-2010, 09:54 AM   #7
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need running lights working

bwaysteve,

Here is some info from my 65 caravel. One pic shows where the pigtail comes thru the frame and into the area above the bellypan patch. Note also the orange wire from the breakaway switch coming thru the frame. I took some coat hanger wire and linked a new pigtail to the old by pushing thru the outside insulation of the cables. Then taped everything up smoothly. Then I yanked the old wire out of the frame while pulling in the new wire. This wasn't too hard to do, but then I had the floor out. The original breakaway wire insulation had worn away where it came out of the frame. It must have really made some sparks when it shorted! So it makes sense to add additional insulation or a bushing to both wires to keep this from happening again.

Notice the green wire going up thru the aluminum C channed? It feeds my front two marker lights. Another green wire branches off from the green bundle at the patch and feeds the rear marker lights, tail lights, and license light. (I don't show this correctly on my wiring diagram).

I included my sketched - out wiring diagram. Some wire colors change in places due to soldered splices but maybe you can get some info off it to help you.
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Old 01-12-2010, 08:39 AM   #8
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Need Running Lights Working

Greetings mmcpherson!

Welcome to the Forums and the world of Vintage Overlander ownership!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmcpherson View Post
Kevin et al, I purchased a 69 Overlander. The brake wiring was apparently damaged by rodents. I had the brakes replaced and the wiring bundle from trailer to tow vehicle bumper. The brake lights and turn signal works on right side of trailer, only. The reverse lights or left back lights or clearance lights are not working.

Can you offer some suggestions?
I suspect that you are going to discover multiple issues that may be causing your problems. My suggestion would be to consider the following:
  • Corossion is a factor to be considered any time there is an exterior light problem.
    • Check each socket and bulb for evidence of corrosion, clean and repair as necessary.
    • Remove each clearance light and clean both the base and the surface below where it is attached -- then reinstall -- this should clean the ground and insure a positive connection (don't forget to check any splices or wire nuts for corrosion making necessary repairs).
    • If the clearance lights appear to be heavil corroded, replacements aren't terribly expensive and require no more labor to install than cleaning and restoring the originals.
  • The same processes also would apply to the tail light assemblies and backup light assemblies. Parts for these aren't as readily available so you may find it necessary to restore what is there.
  • It is an unknown factor regarding how the shop replaced your original damaged umbilical cord, particularly if it wasn't replaced by a shop familiar with Airstreams.
    • You will want to identify where your umbilical cord junction box is located. Transitional years like 1969 can pose some issues in making blanket statments regarding how things were handled at either of the two factories.
      • Start out by looking for a square or rectangular access panel in the front curbside corner of the bellypan.
      • If an access panel isn't found in the bellypan, try checking behind the gaucho on the interior front panel for a junction box or access panel behind which might be found the umbilical junction box.
    • Once you have found the junction box, you might want to check the wiring against the color code functions found in the pdf file attached to this message. The functions of the wires in your coach may not conform to this diagram -- but they may be in complete comformity as they were on my Overlander. In either case, this makes a good place to begin checking to see whether the problem is in the new umbilical cord or located somewhere in the coach.
Good luck with your investigation!

Kevin
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 7wayplug1966-81--2009.pdf (9.0 KB, 24 views)
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1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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