AAW vs. Replacement OEM - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 11th, 08, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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Steve
 
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AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Which is a better way to go when keeping the integrity of the interior and gauges? AAW looks much more complete with options to expand....also less expensive. Purchasing OEM syle wiring is much more expensive. Is there a benefit over the other?
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 11th, 08, 10:53 PM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Welcome
The AAW kits are very good, as well as the tech support. You can choose stock replacement or the update kits with options for power windows, power locks, elec. fuel pump...


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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 06:06 AM Thread Starter
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Steve
 
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Thanks Harley. So there really is no benefit over the other? Does the AAW kits have the plugs pre assembled on the wiring or do you have to solder them all?
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 06:10 AM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

It really depends. I have been selling and installing AAW for 20 years. Back in the restoration days the factory replacement harnesses were always perfect and never lost any points in 1000 point judging. The factory replacment reproduction harnesses are truely plug and play. Now that we do the Pro Touring and Street / Race projects, the Classic Updates are the way to go because of all the elctronic options we add, gauges, A/C, power windows, fuel injection, etc. The Classic Update has every wire you need and more and bolts in the original fuse box location, but does require you terminate a lot of the ends. Everything is very well marked. Another advantage of the Classic update is you also get blade type fuses. And it is damn near 1/2 the cost of the reproduction harnesses.

We can get you whichever you decide and save you dollars. We stock the Classic Updates and sell quite a bit of them

Feel free to call me if you have any other questions. Maybe on the phone we can better determine your needs and abilities.

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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 06:57 AM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyclopsracer View Post
Which is a better way to go when keeping the integrity of the interior and gauges? AAW looks much more complete with options to expand....also less expensive. Purchasing OEM syle wiring is much more expensive. Is there a benefit over the other?
I'm confused... Factory wiring from GM is no longer available.

The 3 manufacturers of aftermarket wiring that come immediately to mind are AAW, M&H, and Painless. All three have many choices of wiring.

I'm most familiar with AAW.
Option 1 is exact replacement, can't tell them from stock. Harnesses are complete with all new factory style connectors, factory style fusebox, everything as original as it can be. M&H also sells this style harness, Painless does not.

Option 2 is called "Classic Update" (from AAW) This style adds additional circuits and wires for commonly installed "modernizations." Things like electronic ignitions, electric fans, stuff like that. I believe an AAW Classic Update harness still has all the factory connectors preinstalled in the right places, not sure what type of fusebox it uses. M&H has a similar product.

Painless is best known for thier 18 circuit universal street rod harness. This one uses a new style fusebox, and all the ends are unterminated for custom routing and so you can install whatever type of connectors you like.

Painless HAS been adding products, and coming out with harnesses targeted at specific cars that are not so "universal do it yourself." They also have a selection of standalone EFI harnesses for retrofitting modern engines into older cars.

While in the past, we have not recommended painless for people here who wanted to replace thier factory harness, I do think they deserve another look. They have a lot of new products that I at least know little about.





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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 07:05 AM Thread Starter
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Thanks Jim.

I guess what I meant by an OEM is all the harness' are seperate and it costs double the price of the Classic Update Kit from AAW. Basically what you are saying is that if you want to terminate your own ends, you will save a ton of money and be able to add all the modern updates. If you go with an OEM "style" then it's easier but no additions.

Am I correct.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 09:01 AM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

Yes, to an extent. The OEM style harnesses are factory correct as built 40 years ago, and are true plug and play.

Perhaps someone more intimately familiar with the classic update series needs to chime in here on the details. I'm not sure what fusebox they use, think it's a new style. I believe all new original style terminals and plastic connector housings are included, but am not certain if they are attached.





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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 09:42 AM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

The Classic Update uses a blade type fuse box that mounts in the original factory location. It also has additional ciircuits and relays. The kit comes with connectors like Headlamp adapters and you have to slide the wires through the plastic housing and then crimp the fitting and slide the fittings into the plastic connector.

Cyclops, Steve, good talking to you. Sorry if you are mor confused now, LOL! As I said in your case, the factory stuff is idealy suited for your project, but double the cost. So it is really............................................

Time or Money?

The plug and play stuff is a weekends work. The Classic update will be closer to 2 weekends.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 06:46 PM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

I installed an AAW Classic Update kit on my car and would do it again. In fact, my next project will also use the same kit as I could not imagine things going any better. Some things to know:

- The instructions are very clear, everything is labeled.

- There are very few ends (terminals) pre-installed on the wires, but that is a good thing. You may decide to route your wires differently than factory and the wires are usually several feet longer than you need. So you just run the wires the way YOU want to run them, then cut off the excess, and crimp the end on that they tell you to.

- But, and here is the most important thing: You really, really need to get a good quality crimp tool that can do the double-crimp like AAW suggests. The terminals they use are non-insulated and require a good crimping tool. I purchased the two that AAW suggested and could not be happier, but Frank from Prodigy can probably suggest where to get them and save a lot of $$$. To use the cheap crimpers (the ones that you get from autoparts stores with the box of connectors) on the AAW connectors is just plain criminal.

- I also did not solder any of my connections except for the starter. I think if you see the crimp that the good tools make you will understand what I mean by solder not really needed, but that is my opinion.

- And I cannot say enough about how good their tech support is.

-Kevin

'68 RS Camaro, 454 SBC
'69 Camaro, body only
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 09:19 PM
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

I suggested he get the AAW crimpes also. Great report, Thank You.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 12th, 08, 09:35 PM
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Kevin
 
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

One more thing. I don't know if the 'factory' kits comes with a way of bunding the wires, but the classic series does not, meaning the wires are all loose. Unless you want the factory look, you can either get some of that plastic wire snake like the new cars and trucks have or some other product.

I used PowerBraid from Painless, which is a good product, buts its very expensive for what you get IMHO. I'd like to find an alternative that is about the same product with less $$. I also used Powerbraid on my braided lines where they contacted metal and I used a LOT of it.

-Kevin

'68 RS Camaro, 454 SBC
'69 Camaro, body only
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 13th, 08, 06:07 AM
 
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

I used the AAW Classic Update kit (that I got from Frank) in my car and it was incredibly simple. I highly recommend it. Zero issues with the kit and everything you would need, and then some, is included.

Since I'm running EFI, I removed any conductors from the OEM style bulkhead that I wasn't using. I also used metripak connectors instead of the OE style connectors in quite a few places. It's a flexible and versatile kit.
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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old Mar 13th, 08, 10:46 PM Thread Starter
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Steve
 
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Re: AAW vs. Replacement OEM

I really appreciate that we Camaro lovers have forums such as these to 'help us along". Thanks for all of the responses
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