Monday, April 1, 2013

Wire you so janky (see what I did there)

More progress on the truck!  Things have been going pretty smoothly lately.  The weather has been nicer and the days are getting longer, so more time for work :)

One of the things that had been bothering me was the way the defrost vents were sticking up.  2 of them would stick up on one end because the replacement dash cap I got was slightly warped.

Notice how the left and middle vents are raised along their right sides
This wasn't really something that effected function so I had lived with it, but with the truck nearing completion I wanted it cleaned up.  I popped the 2 vents out and used a hammer and a screwdriver to bend the metal under the vinyl of the dash around until I got it bent in a manner that allowed both of the vents to seat nicely.

Middle vent fixed
And the left...
Shortly after doing this the speedometer cable I ordered arrived.  I pulled the cluster out of the dash and got to work.

There were also a couple bulbs on the idiot lights that were out.  I went ahead and found replacements for these.   The lights aren't really important but I just like to have things working.

Here's the back of the cluster just so you can see this awesome 80s tech.

That greasy thing on the left side is where the speedometer cable connects to.  There was a little odd looking bit of plastic sticking out of this that I suspected was the end of the cable that had broken off.

I was right.
The cable wasn't too hard to get out surprisingly.  3 screws and a few clips, disconnect from the transmission and just yanked it out.

It was nasty and covered in grease
Got the new one out of the box.  Here's what the end is supposed to look like.

It was a lot more difficult to install this thing than it was to remove, but still it only took about 20 minutes.  There was a bunch of grease and other buildup around where it screws into the firewall, so I cleaned all that junk off.

Notice that open area under the brake booster vaccum line, that's where the cable mounts

Here's the new one installed, nice and clean

Tested it out and it works great!  It's a couple mph behind the GPS speedometer I was using, but close enough.  I'd rather it say I was going faster than I am than the other way around.

In another couple days I got the new plugs for the headlights to replace the janky wiring that I talked about a few posts ago.  I cut the little things off the ends of the wires on the passenger side, stripped away a few inches of wire that had been spliced into, and soldered the new plug in, then heatshrunk it and wrapped it in conduit.



Tested it and it works great :)  Definitely looks a lot better than those stupid wires and I won't have to worry about them falling off/corroding/shorting/etc.

The other side was ok, but the plug did have some corrosion on it and the wires on that side had been spliced as well, so I cut that stuff out and replaced it as well.  That plug pack came with 2 anyway so why not.

The boot around the headlight on the driver's side is missing.  I tried to find one at advance and a couple other local places but they didn't have any.  I got on infamous nissan and my usual parts guy (david29) had some so I ordered one from him.  It'll be in in a few days.

Here's a picture with the old plug and one of those butt connectors that was used to splice some random piece of junk wire in.

I've still got some wiring cleanup I'd like to do in the engine bay, some niceties for the interior, that kindof thing but I'm really pleased with where the truck is right now :)  It's come a long way in just a little over a year!

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