Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

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bartigue
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Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by bartigue » Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:20 pm

Despite owning a dozen or so of these cars I've never removed the entire wiring harness. In this case, on the 1969, it seems a simple enough job. From the way it looks it appears FIAT installed fully assembled harnesses by pushing pieces of it through holes in the chassis. Therefore it should come out the same way with some wrangling.

Any tips or advice?
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Brad Artigue
1969, 1969, 1970, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, and 1982 124 Spiders
1969, 1970 850 Spiders
77 X1/9
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by fp55scca » Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:40 pm

--Brad, I removed all of the harnesses on my '72 Spider when I restored it. As you've already observed, make notes on routing.

--The '72 was pretty much in 3 sections: (1) engine compartment, (2) dashboard, which includes steering wheel, and (3) trunk harness. I just made a few notations on masking tape, attached here and there for orientation, and to note grounding points. Gang plugs were simply number coded and marked, ie. #1 to #1, and so forth. No real issues on re-installation.
Jim Scurria
Norfolk, VA

1972 Fiat 124 Spider
1971 Spider - SCCA FP-24
1974 CSA Abarth Replica
1981 Fiat Spider Ratrod
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cgranju
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by cgranju » Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:35 pm

For what little it’s worth, I’ve removed 2 or 3 complete 124 harnesses without any issues or having to cut. For as “home-made” as wiring on the cars looks, it seems to come out nicely.
Chris Granju
sunny East TN
owner of a number of Fiats built prior to 1986
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friedman
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by friedman » Thu Apr 18, 2019 3:57 pm

Concur, have removed many Fiat harnesses and you should never have to hack up anything to get it out. LABEL EVERY WIRE. Your memory won't work, the wiring diagrams will indicate the wrong color and photos won't be detailed enough. I also label where a harness goes. As you well know, six months from now when you reinstall the harness you will swear everything is off and it couldn't possibly be the harness that came off the car.
Carl in Virginia
75 spider
86 Bertone
77 X1/9
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bartigue
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by bartigue » Thu Apr 18, 2019 5:02 pm

friedman wrote:
Thu Apr 18, 2019 3:57 pm
Concur, have removed many Fiat harnesses and you should never have to hack up anything to get it out. LABEL EVERY WIRE. Your memory won't work, the wiring diagrams will indicate the wrong color and photos won't be detailed enough. I also label where a harness goes. As you well know, six months from now when you reinstall the harness you will swear everything is off and it couldn't possibly be the harness that came off the car.
On this car nothing is connected to the harness. Well, some things are, but the majority of devices are in boxes that came with it. Only the lighting and starter, alternator, coil remain connected. Fortunately the earlier cars had a lot less to deal with than the later ones.
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Brad Artigue
1969, 1969, 1970, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, and 1982 124 Spiders
1969, 1970 850 Spiders
77 X1/9
http://fiat.artigue.com
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by jrbrks » Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:35 am

Is there a source for reproduction wiring harnesses for the earlier 124’s?

In addition to the excellent suggestions offered, I would further add making multiple copies of the wiring harness diagram on large paper, eg 8.5 x14 inches or 11 x 14 inches. I use the multiple copies to mark notes, as I remove and reinstall the harness or if wires are added/wire colors changed.

I can then include an “edited” wiring harness copy (with any changes noted above) to the car’s service history folder. In addition to helping my memory with any future repairs, I really hope it helps any future owner to understand my logic (or lack thereof), as they service the car.

Jim
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by spider2081 » Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:46 am

I have removed a number of complete harnesses from mid 70's through 82 Spiders. The cars with the relays on the drivers side front fender well are the most difficult. The harnesses seem to be manufactured in sections and the sections plug together to make the complete harness. I like to use a Scripto marker and label the connectors with the wire diagram numbers. Takes a little time but later on it saves time.

I also feel its better to repair an original butchered harness than it is to purchase an aftermarket universal harness.

Modifications for a daily driver I like are:
remove ground pods and install ring terminals on the ground wires that fit the ground pod stud. Reinstall all the grounds on the stud with star washer,flat washer and nut.
Install Lada ATC type fuse panel in place of the original Fiat fuse panel.
Install headlight relay kit
Install starter relay kit in % speed cars. Automatic transmission cars come from factory with one as do some seat belt interlock 5 speed cars like the 1974 spider.
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by bartigue » Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:17 pm

All good advice

I’m not going to add or modify it in any way. The car has all the original, unhacked wiring and connectors and will remain as such. I need to clean it up, brighten the connectors. Now I might add a relay or two in between devices but not if I have to cut this harness!
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Brad Artigue
1969, 1969, 1970, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, and 1982 124 Spiders
1969, 1970 850 Spiders
77 X1/9
http://fiat.artigue.com
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by spider2081 » Sun Apr 21, 2019 12:17 pm

Now I might add a relay or two in between devices but not if I have to cut this harness!
I think Plug and play relay mods are easier on older Spiders because the Spade type connectors are easier to source than the bullet type. The addition of inline fuses connected to the alternator output post would be the only connection not through a connector.
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Re: Removing the entire wiring harness - advice?

Post by jseabolt » Sat Apr 27, 2019 1:58 am

This is probably not the answer to your question. It sounds like your wanting to do a ground up restoration on a Spider. By stripping the car to it's bare shell and sandblasting the body or acid dipping it.

I have removed the wiring harness from an 81 Spider and an 87 Yugo. When I removed the wiring from these two cars, I just cut the wires at the firewall. If I hit a snag somewhere I just cut the wires.

Although my reason was to recycle the wiring for use on other projects. Have you priced a roll of wire at O'Reilys Autoparts? It's like $7.00 a roll.

I've used allot of Yugo wiring on my 68 Ford and my 81 Trabant! I even used two of the white gang connectors to hook up my VDO guages on my Spider. That way if I have to pull that particular cluster, all I have to do is unplug one connector.

Anytime I need some wire for something , I just pull out my box of Yugo wiring and cut off a section. Then trim the insulation back until the wire is shiny. I have used so much of it, I think I need to get into my parent's barn loft and dig out that Spider wiring harness.

When Brett Melancon restored his X 1/9 he stripped it down to nothing and had the shell media blasted. He said he removed the wiring harness and it was an absolute "B" to put back into the car. Yes labeling everything is the key.
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