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PostPosted:Fri Apr 30, 2021 6:55 pm 
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Jeroen, How do you take the power off the spades in the connector block on the battery lead without loosing one of the exiting ones - I guess the feed that did run to the light switched can be downgraded, since it'll only power the sides and flashers, etc. But that would show a bit.

Reason I ask is that the 7-pin RIST that has the blue and white and blue and red outputs from the lighting switches, don't have a high current feed in it. So, rather than put an insert in two connectors, I'm looking at taking the feed from that connector block, i.e. moving it from the battery side of the fuse box.

I have looked, at the 9.5mm crimp-on spade connectors to make up a splice, and the female is more obtainable than the male - to misquote Kipling.

As to putting stuff under the battery: considering how rotten the chassis leg was down there on my car, I have reservations (and a lot less mimosa hammerite smooth than I used to have).

I'm not uprating the headlights, btw. So the 3mmsq connector feed lines to the mains and dips are plenty good enough, with little enough voltage drop for me. I guess if you want to go to 4 x 100 Watt mains, the feed to the mains would be a bit overloaded, though I guess the feed to the dips would cope reasonably well. I suspect 2 x 100 and 2 x 60/75 Watt mains would be a bit close to the limit too.

Graham

_________________
The 16v Slant 4 engine is more fun than the 3.5 V8, because you mostly drive it on the upslope of the torque curve.

Factory 1977 TR7 Sprint FHC VVC 697S (Now all of, but still needs putting together)
B&Y 73 Dolomite Sprint UVB 274M (kids!)
1970 Maroon 13/60 Herald Convertable (wife's fun car).


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PostPosted:Fri Apr 30, 2021 7:56 pm 
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I too have reservations about putting relays under the battery, neat as Jeroen's fitting is, it's still subject to water and road muck from below and battery acid from above. The loom runs there, true, but its fully enclosed where relay carriers aren't.

I also like to incorporate fuses in the modern tradition, 4 fuses for headlights in total, being LH dip beam, RH dip beam, LH main beam and RH main beam with separate wires from the fuse to each filament. These are incorporated in the fuse/relay holders I use, an incomplete one pictured below.The spare fuse on the Diprelay can be used to power a rear fog light circuit and the spare fuse on the main beam relay gets used for the fan (the relay for which is housed in the 3rd block) Relay/fuse holders lock together for fitting from Car Builder Solutions.

I have one of Jeroen's kits here, supplied to a customer, which I have recently fitted as part of it's post respray build up. With a little extra original loom left in, I managed to divert the whole loom above the battery where I prefer it. The relay power does indeed come from the 9.5 spade on the main (red) battery lead that originally powered the headlight switch with a pigtail back to the switch wire in a lower amp cable. Seems to work fine.

On the matter of voltage drop, I was taught, from my earliest apprentice days, to keep the wire runs from relay to, well anything really, as short as was practically possible, both to reduce any potential voltage drop and save on expensive and clumsy thick wire. On a practical note, i've also found it difficult to obtain the correct colour coded wire in anything bigger than a 16a thinwall cable, which is OK to power a single filament of a headlight but still makes a less-than-ideal 6 wire package on a Dolomite.


Image

Steve

_________________
'73 2 door Toledo with Vauxhall Carlton 2.0 8v engine (The Carledo)
'78 Sprint Auto with Vauxhall Omega 2.2 16v engine (The Dolomega)
'72 Triumph 1500FWD in Slate Grey

Maverick Triumph, Servicing, Repairs, Electrical, Recomissioning, MOT prep, Trackerjack brake fitting service.
Apprentice served Triumph Specialist for 50 years. PM for more info or quotes.


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PostPosted:Sat May 01, 2021 10:12 am 
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I think that there are two connected issues here, that have different requirements and so different ideal solutions.

The issue I'm primarily interested in is to take the load off the light switches at the top of the steering column. That's because, I think, switching something like 30 Amps steady state is liable to have a bad effect on the switches, especially as they get older. I also suspect that there are issues in surge currents switching the lights on, and, possibly, back EMFs from inductive components in the load switching them off. But the steady state current is, on its own, enough to worry me.

The other is about upgrading the lights, i.e. fitting higher power bulbs. As I understand it, you can do more or less as you like in terms of bulb powers with a car from before 1982. I guess alignment becomes a bigger issue if you do upgrade, and needs some care.

The problem there is that the original feed lines to the headlamps are too small. From looking at them under the dash, all four mains are running off a 3mmsq, 30 Amp conductor, and both dips are fed with the same size cable. That's only just over 400 Watts at the maximum current capacity (when new) of the cables, i.e. 4 x 100 Watts for the mains. And I, at least, would want a bit more of a safety margin than that. I would think, if I was upgrading the mains. I'd want at least 4.5mmsq, preferably 6mmsq, for the 4 mains, 3mmsq, for any pair, and 1.5mmsq for any single lamp. Steve also wants more fuses, presumably to guard against any one filament failing catastrophically and blowing any reasonable sized fuse common to a set. Maybe that's a bigger issue with bigger or more efficient (power to lux) bulbs. So, relays are pretty much a must with such an upgrade. And, for several reasons, you want the relays as close to the headlights as possible.

But also, given that standard wiring is adequate for the standard headlight powers, if all you want is to take the load off the switches, like me (and don't worry excessively about fusing all the lights in a set together), the relays can go anywhere that's convenient. They won't necessarily change the losses in the cables, but they will remove any losses from the old switches, with old worn contacts, etc., as well as probably extending their life considerably.

My ideal solution to that would be to put the relays as close to the switches as is possible. So, ideally inside the steering column shroud. But, I don't feel that's convenient enough. So the next best place is under the dash. But I do have a reason to feed them from elsewhere than the battery side of the fusebox. So, ideally, I want a male and female 9.5mm spade to make a removable splice at the connector block on the battery lead.

Graham

_________________
The 16v Slant 4 engine is more fun than the 3.5 V8, because you mostly drive it on the upslope of the torque curve.

Factory 1977 TR7 Sprint FHC VVC 697S (Now all of, but still needs putting together)
B&Y 73 Dolomite Sprint UVB 274M (kids!)
1970 Maroon 13/60 Herald Convertable (wife's fun car).


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PostPosted:Sat May 01, 2021 1:01 pm 
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Quote:
I think that there are two connected issues here, that have different requirements and so different ideal solutions.

The issue I'm primarily interested in is to take the load off the light switches at the top of the steering column. That's because, I think, switching something like 30 Amps steady state is liable to have a bad effect on the switches, especially as they get older. I also suspect that there are issues in surge currents switching the lights on, and, possibly, back EMFs from inductive components in the load switching them off. But the steady state current is, on its own, enough to worry me.

The other is about upgrading the lights, i.e. fitting higher power bulbs. As I understand it, you can do more or less as you like in terms of bulb powers with a car from before 1982. I guess alignment becomes a bigger issue if you do upgrade, and needs some care.

The problem there is that the original feed lines to the headlamps are too small. From looking at them under the dash, all four mains are running off a 3mmsq, 30 Amp conductor, and both dips are fed with the same size cable. That's only just over 400 Watts at the maximum current capacity (when new) of the cables, i.e. 4 x 100 Watts for the mains. And I, at least, would want a bit more of a safety margin than that. I would think, if I was upgrading the mains. I'd want at least 4.5mmsq, preferably 6mmsq, for the 4 mains, 3mmsq, for any pair, and 1.5mmsq for any single lamp. Steve also wants more fuses, presumably to guard against any one filament failing catastrophically and blowing any reasonable sized fuse common to a set. Maybe that's a bigger issue with bigger or more efficient (power to lux) bulbs. So, relays are pretty much a must with such an upgrade. And, for several reasons, you want the relays as close to the headlights as possible.

But also, given that standard wiring is adequate for the standard headlight powers, if all you want is to take the load off the switches, like me (and don't worry excessively about fusing all the lights in a set together), the relays can go anywhere that's convenient. They won't necessarily change the losses in the cables, but they will remove any losses from the old switches, with old worn contacts, etc., as well as probably extending their life considerably.

My ideal solution to that would be to put the relays as close to the switches as is possible. So, ideally inside the steering column shroud. But, I don't feel that's convenient enough. So the next best place is under the dash. But I do have a reason to feed them from elsewhere than the battery side of the fusebox. So, ideally, I want a male and female 9.5mm spade to make a removable splice at the connector block on the battery lead.

Graham
OK, so 5 points here.

Point 1, save the switches, agreed, we're all on the same page with this one!

Point 2, upgrading the lights, I think you'll find anything higher than the standard H4's 60/55w output is STILL illegal, not that that stops many people. Alignment is another issue altogether, my experience says it's ALWAYS critical. Good alignment can make poor lights bearable and good lights safe for other road users. Take the bezels off before the MOT and drop the tester a couple of quid to set them up properly, it's a worthwhile investment!

Point 3, is the wiring up to it? Yes and no! I think your 400w main beam output is unduly pessimistic. Standard sealed beams are 45w each for a 180w total or 240w IF you can acquire a pair of the legendary early fit 75w inner sealed beams. The "normal" halogen bulb conversion kits give an output of (2x60+2x55w) 230w on main beam, only if you to illegal extremes and use 100/80w outers and 75w inners do you get close to that 400w figure. My insistence on multiple fuses is based on the fact (not theory) that the fuse will always blow on a dark and stormy night, miles from anywhere. If i've only lost 1 filament I can keep driving till I either get home or find a sheltered place to fix it, lose both dips or all 4 mains and i'm condemned to a soaking at the very least! I call it outwitting Murphy's law!

Point 4, keeping the lights standard, fine, if that's what you want, my only comment is that sealed beam units are growing increasingly rare and expensive. If it's a daily driver, unless you can find some 410 bulb fitment (45/40w) lamps, sooner or later you'll HAVE to upgrade to Halogen.

Point 5, powering the relays. I don't see a problem with the fusebox as a power source, almost NOTHING runs off that fuse, clock, horn and interior light. Yet it has a large size cable feeding it, straight from that 4 way on the main lead. But if you don't like it, your choice, let's consider alternatives. In and out using the 9.5mm male and female spades as you suggest is possible. They must BE available as Jeroen uses them, if you can't find them anywhere else, I expect he'd sell you a pair (and the insulated sheaths which I suspect are harder to source than the terminals themselves) My own, slightly more radical, solution is to ditch the original 4 way on the main power cable, horrible bodge that it is. This lets you use a fatter cable for more amps to the starter and then take a second lead from battery +ve to a flitch mounted insulated live post (less than £10 from CBS) to which you can connect as many wires as you like (up to about 10) via ring terminals. Finally, did you know that OHV Dolomites use a different sort of 4 way to the slant cars? On an OHV car it's a remote, flitch mounted unit. If you know where to look you can find one on a scrap car, mount it near the original and gain 3 more permant live feed possibilites with something that LOOKS stock! The part number, not that I think it will do you any good, is 150640.

Steve

_________________
'73 2 door Toledo with Vauxhall Carlton 2.0 8v engine (The Carledo)
'78 Sprint Auto with Vauxhall Omega 2.2 16v engine (The Dolomega)
'72 Triumph 1500FWD in Slate Grey

Maverick Triumph, Servicing, Repairs, Electrical, Recomissioning, MOT prep, Trackerjack brake fitting service.
Apprentice served Triumph Specialist for 50 years. PM for more info or quotes.


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PostPosted:Sat May 01, 2021 2:56 pm 
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Steve,

It's the date when the limits on bulb powers came into force I'm not sure of. But there is a manufacture date, cars from before which you can use higher power bulbs and it's legal. I think it's 1982 from memory and some comments on the web. But then I also think I had two TR7s, one where 100w mains were legal and one where they weren't. So it may be an earlier date, like 1978/9. Don't know for sure.

When I see badly misaligned headlights from the front I do think of Bob Heinlein's meme: "An armed society is a polite society." But maybe I'm just getting old.

When I said about upgrading/not upgrading, I have and would always go to halogens. I meant upgrading the power levels. So the 400 Watts is for higher power mains, say 100 all through. I personally wouldn't dare draw 400 watts through that feed to the mains, which looks like 3mmsq thick wall to me - even with relays replacing the switches. And wouldn't have when it was new even. So, to clarify, if I was upgrading the power of the lights, I'd want to upgrade the cables as well as add relays, so I'd want the relays near the lights - as much to reduce the mucking about with wires as worrying about a few percent of the power being lost in the cables.

Fuses: I get the reference to Sod's law - so much more accurate than Fingal's law. But one fuse per filament would be more effort than I'm up for - I'd want them ones that light-up when the blow as well, cos I'd never remember which was which on such a dark and rainy night. Marty Feldman to Gene wilder in Young Frankenstein (steen) - "It could be worth mathter".

The problem with taking the power off the fusebox is minor: If I flash the lights when there's something with much bass, and the volume is all the way up to 11, the USB player drops out. Not a big issue, but annoying. Maybe it's an earlier car thing, but the feed to mine looks to be only about 4.5mmsq - it's nowhere as big as the feed to the light switch. I could fit some power storage supercaps behind the player I suppose. Couple of farads should do. But I'd like to take the lights more directly off the battery or find an easy way to splice the feed to the light switch - one that's reasonably easily undoable. I've seen some Scotchlocks that are claimed to fit 6mmsq conductors, but I bet it's only thin wall cable.


Jeroen,
You got 9.5mm crimp on spades and covers to buy? I ordered the brass to make a male spade, but I don't know it will work, and it looks a faff, and the battery on my B&D snide Dremel has seen better days.

Graham

_________________
The 16v Slant 4 engine is more fun than the 3.5 V8, because you mostly drive it on the upslope of the torque curve.

Factory 1977 TR7 Sprint FHC VVC 697S (Now all of, but still needs putting together)
B&Y 73 Dolomite Sprint UVB 274M (kids!)
1970 Maroon 13/60 Herald Convertable (wife's fun car).


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PostPosted:Sat May 01, 2021 10:15 pm 
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I know the fused permanent live that feeds the headlight flash facility as well as the horn is a tiddly little thing, probably only 14/010 in old money, but surely this should be irrelevant if you have the relays fitted, it still powers the same fat U/W wire OUT of the dipswitch that now only fires the relays and not the whole main beam circuit. So I can't see how that should upset your flashy stereo! I'd be more inclined to suspect the fuse itself or at least the strength of it's connection to the fuseholder. In any case, i'd fit the relay power lead to the unfused side, drawing from the fused side wouldn't occur to me (except they DID it for the flash facility! That and the size of the feed wire makes me shudder to think of it!)

It's just occurred to me that it's possible your relay power feed could be called upon (however briefly) to fire up BOTH relays and all 6 filaments if you are driving on dip beam and pull the flash at the same time!

I'm also a Heinlein fan, Starship Troopers wasn't it? Although similar themes run through all his later works. And my attitude to facing poorly aligned (and absent) headlights is essentially the same as yours. It seems to be particularly prevalent around where I live, surprising when you consider that I can count on my fingers the number of streetlights within 5 miles of my house! How can they SEE? CAN they see? Or do they do it all on muscle memory?

Fuses, I built my loom(s) almost from scratch, I know which fuse does what and, lest I forget (and also because, one day, someone else may have to work on the car) I am compiling an "owners handbook" for the Dolomega which details all the mods, what filters are used, oil grades, brake pad specs and part numbers and, most emphatically, diagrams of fuseboxes and relay boards telling what does what (there are 23 fuses and 14 relays) I may even include wiring diagrams.

For this car, i've kept to "legal" wattages for headlights. With the H4/H1 combos running in high quality parabolic Hella reflectors, the headlights aligned correctly and a pair of NOS "Square 8" driving lights, all the relays and fuses for lights are in a box just behind the N/S headlights, one 16a wire and 1 fuse per filament, I think i'll be OK! Ask me again after the RBRR in October!

The final clincher for the fuses though, is not how wet it is, or even how dark it is when the fuse blows. It's where you are, most probably on a motorway hard shoulder, the middle of a blind bend or the wrong side of a humpback bridge!

Lastly, SCOTCHLOKS!!! How dare you use such language? Scotchloks are the spawn of the devil and the worst bodging tool ever invented! I won't even wire up a towbar with them, even though they are included in most towbar kits!

Steve

_________________
'73 2 door Toledo with Vauxhall Carlton 2.0 8v engine (The Carledo)
'78 Sprint Auto with Vauxhall Omega 2.2 16v engine (The Dolomega)
'72 Triumph 1500FWD in Slate Grey

Maverick Triumph, Servicing, Repairs, Electrical, Recomissioning, MOT prep, Trackerjack brake fitting service.
Apprentice served Triumph Specialist for 50 years. PM for more info or quotes.


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PostPosted:Sun May 02, 2021 10:57 am 
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That drop-out has mostly happened when I was on dips and flashed ("Oh matron!"), but I've had it when I used the flash with the engine not running and the lights off (no not for that reason). I think it's somewhere on the digital side, maybe even the USB stick.

I think the problem in the car is the feed I added to the relay on the main beams comes off the unfused side of the fusebox and the feed to that is a little smaller than the feed to the lightswitch, which would normally power the mains. That drops the voltage to the fusebox and so the player when the headlamps are flashed and, perhaps affects the supply to the ram chips. A flash affecting the flash!

So, I think, it's worth either running a separate feed to the battery or splicing into the original feed to the light switch under the dash, if I can find a discrete and reversible way to do that.

I do know you don't like Scotchlocks Steve - or am I understating that? I have used them for the tow hitch - which I only use for a trailer that don't obscure the car lights - and for the lights-left-on alarm. But can't see me using one in this rather more safety critical case. So I'm still looking for a solution to that problem. Next I'm off to look if I've a dead alternator I can maybe steal a male spade from.

I think the first use of that meme by Heinlein is from well before Starship Troopers, at least Beyond This Horizon or maybe before. But he has gone on about it a bit, now and again, here and there, on some occasions...

Graham

_________________
The 16v Slant 4 engine is more fun than the 3.5 V8, because you mostly drive it on the upslope of the torque curve.

Factory 1977 TR7 Sprint FHC VVC 697S (Now all of, but still needs putting together)
B&Y 73 Dolomite Sprint UVB 274M (kids!)
1970 Maroon 13/60 Herald Convertable (wife's fun car).


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PostPosted:Fri May 07, 2021 7:31 pm 
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The brass plate arrived today. So I used the snide Dremmel (3 charges) and a vice and hammer to make a 9.5mm male crimp-on spade and used that and a bought female and some 6mm2 brown thinwall to make a reversible splice into one of the leads off the block.

Didn't need big Scotchlocks, which it turns out are only "good" for taking a 3 or 4mm2 splice off a 6mm2 thinwall lead.

The spliced off 6mm2 lead is routed to the auxiliary fuse box that's powering the light relays and fan, as removable add-ons. the wire is hidden under the loom, but I think it will be a year or two before the extra black PVC tape fades in to the patina on the loom wrap.

It may be a while before I find if that fixes the usb player dropping out, but I can't see how it can make that problem worse.

Graham

_________________
The 16v Slant 4 engine is more fun than the 3.5 V8, because you mostly drive it on the upslope of the torque curve.

Factory 1977 TR7 Sprint FHC VVC 697S (Now all of, but still needs putting together)
B&Y 73 Dolomite Sprint UVB 274M (kids!)
1970 Maroon 13/60 Herald Convertable (wife's fun car).


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