Don’t Let The Smoke Out

Picked up this nice little SC from the body shop a few weeks ago after the owner hit a deer with it. The body shop during their repair found a burnt wire at the fuse panel, so I was called in to fix it. Just a simple wire, should be an easy fix……lol. Well, this particular wire is common to burn up in the older 911’s. It runs the clock, the interior lights, hood light, and glovebox light…..and doesn’t have good fuse protection. Thus they burn up once in awhile. I love the color of this car!

When I brought it back from the body shop they said the gauges don’t work….but their is a relay behind the dash for that…….uh….no. There is a bunch of burnt wires behind the dash though! That lone little wire runs in a bundle of larger wires, it got so hot, it melted about 6-7 other wires in the bundle. I always tell people that there is nothing complicated about wiring. Just don’t let the smoke out of the wires. Once you do that, then it does become complicated. Someone let the smoke out.

The issue, is that it is not easy to access where the bulk of the burn occurred, which was behind the tach. So far it appears that is fairly localized there, which is good and bad. Good because it is localized there, bad because there is no access. So I need to pull that section of the harness from the fuse panel and try and work it out the hole to repair the harness.

Which involves pulling the fuel tank.

So I can get the wires free.


Near the fuse panel end, you can see the one black wire that got hot. Luckily it spared almost all of the harness that was in an area that was super easy to get to…….uh……damn.

Ummmmm a few wires here and a few wires there. Luckily we have kept a bunch of old wiring harnesses that I can find the same color coded wires to splice in for repairs. Stay tuned as we try and put the smoke back in the wires.

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Dale Wilen

July 12, 2013 at 4:04 PM

Karl, I am glad that you remember some of the things I teach you. I learned about that “electricity runs on smoke” thing in engineering school, but had experienced it almost sixty years ago when, as a mature young lad of 4 who had decided to shave, plugged a 32 volt DC shaver (yes, that is correct) into a 110 volt outlet. It went like hell until I let the smoke out.

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