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Thread: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

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    Jedi Warrior red57's Avatar
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    What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    It seems like most of the new wiring harnesses available are cloth wrapped but the 1960 BT7 I'm working on has wire harnesses wrapped in black vinyl tape.

    I bought the car in 1987 and there was no evidence of prior restoration when I got it so I always assumed the wire harness was factory. I prefer a black vinyl wrapped harness because I can add new circuits like driving lights and wrap with vinyl tape and it all looks uniform - if I use the cloth wrapped harness, any added circuits will be obvious.

    Does anybody know how to identify which type of outer covering for which years/models of car?

    Thanks,
    Dave

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    HIave

    I have seen wire harnesses wrapped in cloth predominantly on original cars, additionally I have seen what I think are after market ones wrapped in blue vinyl

    I have not seen replacement harnesses wrapped in black vinyl

    Wrapping a harness in a non breathing outer cover will further reduce It's current carrying capability
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Black Bicycle handlebar tape (cloth version) might be an option
    The least I can do is keep my CarClean.com
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    For wiring harness ID, see this and pick your model:

    http://www.britishwiring.com/Austin-Healey-s/4.htm
    Steve Gerow
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Thanks for the replies. As I said, I bought the car in 1987 and it had a black vinyl wrapped harness that appeared to be factory.

    Keoke, I haven't heard about capacity restrictions from vinyl wrapping (all the American cars of the 50s thru 70s I've had were vinyl wrapped). I actually figured cloth was a poor choice for road dirt and holding water along the bottom of the car??

    BigGreen, The tape you are referring to, I think is what I used to know as friction tape and you are right, if I have a cloth wrapped harness then it would match better than typical PVC tape.

    Steve, Finding cloth covered wiring isn't the problem. I'm more interested in why I have a car with vinyl and most suppliers only offer the cloth. The only supplier I have found
    offering optional vinyl wrapped is SC Parts here:
    https://www.scparts.co.uk/sc_en/brit...ness-8690.html

    The real question is did the factory use vinyl wrapped harnesses and, if so, when & on what models - heritage cert says nothing about this and I can't fined anything in Clausager's Original Austin-Healey.

    I'm not going for concourse but have become curious.

    Thanks,
    Dave

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Keoke, I haven't heard about capacity restrictions from vinyl wrapping (all the American cars of the 50s thru 70s I've had were vinyl wrapped). I actually figured cloth was a poor choice for road dirt and holding water along the bottom of the car??

    Well Dave Lucas Was doin the Engineering N he had some unique ideas---

    A more accurate reason is:
    wire's current handling capability is determined on a individual wire basis in free space , consequently when we bundle , wrap in PVC, enclose in sleeving we alter its operating environment which lowers it's current carrying capability.
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    I'm not sure it this pic came thru I was trying to enlarge it so you could read it. It is from Anderson & Moment and shows the woven fabric on the BT7 just as Steve's source says. Anderson & Moment says nothing about any distinction between cars and only discribes that the harness had black woven fabric with a yellow fine line cross hatch on it. It also says the rear harness was all black woven with no cross hatch.
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by vette View Post
    I'm not sure it this pic came thru I was trying to enlarge it so you could read it. It is from Anderson & Moment and shows the woven fabric on the BT7 just as Steve's source says. Anderson & Moment says nothing about any distinction between cars and only discribes that the harness had black woven fabric with a yellow fine line cross hatch on it. It also says the rear harness was all black woven with no cross hatch.
    Thank you vette. I think you have solved the mystery for me. Apparently a PO must have rewired the car sometime prior to 1987 - a lot can happen in 27 years..... I know it had been re-painted at least 3 times so who knows what else it had gone through.
    Anyway, I will proceed with a cloth wrapped harness. I'm not going for concours, but I'm probably better off doing what the factory did in this case.

    Thanks to all for the help.
    Dave

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by vette View Post
    I'm not sure it this pic came thru I was trying to enlarge it so you could read it. It is from Anderson & Moment and shows the woven fabric on the BT7 just as Steve's source says. Anderson & Moment says nothing about any distinction between cars and only discribes that the harness had black woven fabric with a yellow fine line cross hatch on it. It also says the rear harness was all black woven with no cross hatch.
    The next page has a chart with color trace descriptions.
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by steveg View Post
    The next page has a chart with color trace descriptions.
    Yes it does but I wasn't sure if the print would be large enough to read and it is mostly redundant to what was just said including the supplier that you linked to would surely show what was needed. Since I was trying to enlarge my other pic I didn't want to add to the size of my up load. But I think I got now.
    Bye the way if it can be seen, this pic shows the harness as it should b strapped to the off side inner structure brace.
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    All original 100's had fabric covered wiring except for the one from front to back along the chassis rail for the rear lights. It is vinyl wrapped for protection.

    Years ago the only replacement wiring was vinyl wrapped. I think that might be what you have.

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by Keoke View Post


    Well.....Lucas Was doin the Engineering N he had some unique ideas---


    A more accurate reason is:
    wire's current handling capability is determined on a individual wire basis in free space , consequently when we bundle , wrap in PVC, enclose in sleeving we alter its operating environment which lowers it's current carrying capability.
    Yes, current handling capacity is determined by the wire size, shape, and composition. The real issue, however, is heat (something you generally don't have n non-Lucas 12V automotive systems). You bundle tightly, heat builds up, you start having issues with current handling.

    NOT because they are bundled.

    If so, all those 60-pair Key System phone lines would have burned up last century.

    And, that's mostly AC...and we're DC.....tightly bundled never made a difference. However, if you are worried about Lucas heat and the possibility of smoke escaping, probably a wiring tray would be best, where one wire going up in a mushroom cloud won't affect the rest.

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by gladhill1937 View Post
    All original 100's had fabric covered wiring except for the one from front to back along the chassis rail for the rear lights. It is vinyl wrapped for protection.

    Years ago the only replacement wiring was vinyl wrapped. I think that might be what you have.
    I used non-adhesive harness tape to wrap the wire for the rear lights (just couldn't leave the fabric exposed down there). Not sure if it's technically correct for a Healey, but it's period correct:

    https://www.amazon.com/Factory-Elect.../dp/B06Y2KDQRN

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob_Spidell View Post
    I used non-adhesive harness tape to wrap the wire for the rear lights (just couldn't leave the fabric exposed down there). Not sure if it's technically correct for a Healey, but it's period correct:

    https://www.amazon.com/Factory-Elect.../dp/B06Y2KDQRN
    Non-adhesive tape is correct. The ends were wrapped back twice and tucked under itself.

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    You bundle tightly, heat builds up, you start having issues with current handling.----YEP
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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Hi Dave,

    Although it is obvius that you can purchase a new harness, back in the '80s, I sent my original harnesses to have them rewrapped by (I believe) British Wiring with the original woven pattern (fabric). Since my harnesses were electrically in good condition but looked weathered, having the haranesses wrapped greatly improved its look and also retained the original bends making reinstallation much easier. Although I can't remember the price (and it would not be relevant if I could), I can tell you it was quite a bit less expensive then purchasing new harnesses.

    It's an alternative you may want to consider,
    Ray(64BJ8P1)

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    I replaced my BT7 wiring with a harness from Moss in 1980. It is wrapped with black vinyl tape.
    And it was not exactly correct, but I made it work. Still does.
    Good luck.
    Douglas

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    Re: What is correct wire harness outer wrap

    Concur with RAC68, back in 1977 when I restored my 1960 BT7 I had the original harness recovered with the original fabric with the yellow tracer. Was done by a company called YNZ Yesterday's parts, which at the time was out of his home garage about a mile from where I was living. He subsequently opened a real shop and is still quite busy and has a nice website. If I recall he charged me $35 at that time. You can see some of the harness in this picture. He knew exactly what it needed when I showed it to him. He told that 22 year old kid (me) to take it home clean it thoroughly by removing all the fabric, cleaning the wires and then putting electrical tape every six inches to keep it together in the correct shape.
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