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General Tech O/D Electrical Wire Burned



Luke Skywalker
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I'm pretty sure I'm unique. There's just no one like me around here.

I just cross-wired my overdrive wiring "under the dash" leading from the transmission to the column switch on the steering wheel. These are the wires that come from the switches mounted on the transmission cover of my TR4A. Not sure how I managed to cross wire under the dash where they meet the O/D column switch, but poor lighting is my excuse.

So, yes, I fried the yellow wire badly. The burn goes all they way back to the transmission switch--the most forward of the two switches. Or within an inch. I'll remove the O/D harness and rebuilt it, but for those here who may know, what might I first do to verify that I didn't also ruin the switches on the transmission cover or the relay under the dash? I can say with comfort that none of the wires on the relay appear to have been hot, and the ones leading to the column switch also appear good.

I'm hoping someone will tell me that the mounted switches are bullet proof. If I do need to replace either of them, is that done without removing the cover? Dear Lord tell me it's so.

But far more important than anything else, and I'm trying my best to recall, I thought I remember someone here saying it doesn't matter which wire goes to which side of the switches on the transmission cover. I guess its a fallacy to assume that means you can cross-wire under the dash? Those are two entirely different concepts because as the wires come from the O/D switches under the dash and connect to the column switch we're dealing with different purposes and a host of different current and connections--right? Reversing on the spade connectors at a switch on the transmission cover is one thing, but reversing under the dash and changing all that is different. Can someone say it better?

Maybe a bright electrical guy out there can help shed light on my predicament. I'm glad my kids weren't nearby to see what happened (and to smell the burning wires)!!

Thanks all. KVH

Geo Hahn

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For many years I have used the HF version: > Helping Hands <


I see they now have an upgraded version (LEDs of course): > Jumbo Helping Hands with LED Lights <



Great Pumpkin
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Gah! That failed joint looks like a "cold" solder job.

A set of curve-nosed surgical forceps have served me for decades. Hold the wire with them just up over level, "tin" the copper wire, put the bullet on it and introduce the tip of the soldering pencil or gun to the bullet's tip. Apply the solder to the back side of the bullet until it wicks into the bullet. Done deal. And do NOT mess with the connection until the solder has a chance to cool. A wet sponge will aid that (dad would spit on the joint to lower the temp!).


Jedi Knight
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I use the cheap device from H.F. like Geo. showed. I dip the wire in paste type flux slip the bullet on the wire. Position the wire horizontal on the alligator clamp. Put heat to the bullet with a soldering gun until I get some smoke from the flux then put resin solder to the gun tip at the bullet tip. The solder literally gets sucked into the bullet tip. I do try to make sure the entire bullet and wire get enough heat to let the two bond with the solder. Done.
Soldering was always a chore until I started using the flux.
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