Fiber optics or Light Monitoring System - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
 
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Just purchased a documented unmolested 48,000 mile '68 RS conv. fully loaded, incl. orig console 8-track and the "Fiber Optics" option. I understand the 'optics' option was RARE and told exceptionally rare on a Conv. However, what IS its purpose...exactly? Esp. the "pod" in the back??? I'm having hard time finding any info on this option. Any info is helpful.

[This message has been edited by robertw (edited 07-12-2000).]
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 05:55 PM
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Its purpose was to inform the driver of any "burned out" bulbs. As the turn signal bulb flashes, the light is carried throught the fiber optic cable and flashes in the vigilate.

The two on the fenders are for the front turn signals while the "pod is for the rear lights.

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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 06:33 PM
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Just to add to the info Steve has provided. They also monitor the running lights and headlights. and to give you an idea of value I have seen them on ebay NOS starting at $2,000. My '69 came with them as well but some of the fiber and ends are missing. It's time for me to start looking at the junk yards!

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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 06:49 PM
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DjD,

What are the more difficult pieces to find?

I have three (two of a left or right?, one of the other) front fender pieces. I think. I scored them off a late 60's wagon in the boneyard about 15 years ago. If they were correct, and I could find the interior bits at a reasonable price, I'd do the deed.

Thanks. Carl

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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 07:21 PM
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You can get the chrome covers through repro dealers. I haven't seen the fiber or the plastic with the lenses anywhere but ebay. There are special metal ferrals on the ends of the fiber used to keep the fiber in place.(these could be fab'd from thin tubing) Also there are special sockets and gromets to attach the fiber to each light. The rear setup is different on the convertible because it doesn't mount on the package tray like the coupe...

GM actually put this monitoring system on a bunch of different models just not many on each! If you find a car at the junk yard with fiber it could be worth the effort to salvage it, just take care in removing so it doesn't get dammaged.

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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 00, 08:01 PM
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I took the whole enchilada, from the ferule to the chrome as a unit. It has, I think, a blue, clear, and green circle in the lens?

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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 00, 03:46 AM
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It might be helpful if you know someone who works with AT&T or some other cabling company that works with fiber optic cable. It is touchy and delicate to work with, so experienced help is very good.
Yes, the vigilite is quite rare. Looking in junkyards for these kinds of parts is like looking for a needle in a haystack.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 00, 04:46 AM
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My Z28 has the light monitoring system and I also own a 69 Vette with fiber optic's, teh Corvette catalog (mid america, ecklers) offer repair kits for these units. You can buy the fiber optics tubes and some ends, check out the catalogs.

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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 13th, 00, 07:19 AM
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I work for GTE.. oops Verizon Communications and the fiber we place in the field is much finer... I know a guy that actually used super glue to splice 2 pieces and the light passed thru fine!

JC69RSZ28 thanks for the tip! do you have a web site or number for "midamerica, ecklers"?

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old Jul 14th, 00, 09:20 AM
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M&H Electric or one of the other good wiring harness reproducers might be able to help you out. I know that they do some first rate fiber optic harnesses for 68-71 Corvettes (which came standard with a light monitoring system) and I imagine that they could put together a good system for a Camaro if the two versions are similar.

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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old Jan 5th, 01, 07:04 PM
 
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You might try contacting [email protected], he knows everything there is to know about Camaros. I own a 69 Rally with Fiber Optics, but the previous owner felt the need to cut the rear lense out of the car completely and I haven't been able to locate another. I do have working lenses on the front fenders, but I also understand there was a lense located in the ashtray.
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old Jan 5th, 01, 10:41 PM
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robertw, how is that 8-track wired up and where are does the wiring go through the console? I bought an original 8-track player for my car and would like to put it in this spring. I have an original AM-FM "blue dot" stereo radio.

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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 01, 06:08 AM
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I have probably enough pieces to make a complete coupe set if anyone is interested. As was mentioned earlier, the fiber is a MUCH larger diameter on the car than is used in the telcom industry. I patched a cut in mine with super glue also. It is a little dimmer than the other but not much. I bought a NOS fron half off of ebay so they are out there.

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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 01, 09:15 AM
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Is the fiber glass or is it plastic? I think given how thick it is and the fact you can repair it with super glue, not the best con ductor of light, that it may be a form of plastic rather than high quality "glass" like most of the com equipment uses.

Something that has a cross section of 62.5 microns won't cut it connected to the tail lamp housing.

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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old Jan 6th, 01, 09:53 AM
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It's plastic. There are about a dozen strands in it so the diameter is fairly large. The most difficult part to find was the lens that goes in the fender insert. They are generally all cracked. I got lucky and found that NOS pair so they are mint.

Beware that the coupe and convertible rear section is different. Namely the pod that mount to the rear seat.
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[This message has been edited by rs1968ss (edited 01-06-2001).]
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