Weird light problem... help! - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old May 30th, 04, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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I've got a 67 Camaro, and not a single electrical light/system worked when I got it... now at least I have everything working... BUT, this is kind of weird. The headlights and interior lights flicker a little at night, and it is related to rpm. I did not install any resistors anywhere when I put things back together (they weren't present to begin with). And I have a new msd6al ignition system and coil... anyone else have this problem. Do you think it is related to:

1. Alternator
2. Plug wires or MSD system
3. Voltage regulator
4. Lack of resistors
5. Bad ground

OR... is this NORMAL on old 67 Camaro's... LOL. I'm new to them, so bear with me.

67 Camaro | 350 | 650 Speed Demon | Dual plane GMPP intake | MSD ignition | Secret Cam (I don't know what it IS!) | 2.02/1.60 Camel Humps ported | Thorley Tri-Y's | 8.5 10 bolt 3.73 | M22
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old May 30th, 04, 08:35 PM
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Probably one of two things. Either a bad connection or a flaky voltage regulator. I presume the fuse block and harness are original.

Bad connections often exist at the fuse block itself. The fuse clips are probably a bit rusty . If you want to confirm this, get a digital volt meter and measure the voltage drop between the fuse cap and it's associated terminal. If you see anything more than a few hundredths of a volt you've got a problem. The fuse might also get warm on the end with the bad connection. If so, try a brass gun barrel brush to buff up the interior surface. I always like to follow up about any connection with dielectric grease. It helps keep oxygen and moisture away from the bright metal.

A couple of other places to check is the big terminal block behind the battery where the primary system voltages are connected. The buss bar on the horn relay is another primary point of distribution. But there are 100s of other possibilities. In all cases buff it, dope it and see if it improves.

If that all seems Ok, use the same digital volt meter and wire it up to your electrical system. See how much and at what RPMs your voltages are fluctuating. Depending on where you connect the meter you may find it is isolated to one circuit or common to all. The voltage regulator would become prime suspect in the later case.

Dave
========================
68 Coupe, 350 w/ Edelbrock Performer RPM heads, cam, intake, 700R4, Dave's small body HEI
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old May 31st, 04, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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Dave, thanks... good advice. I think I will use the voltmeter to check the overall system first. That way, I can quickly isolate it to the voltage regulator if that is the culprit, rather than all the distribution points for power, although I may be reduced to that. It actually reminds me a little of an old motorcycle I had that used a generator... LOL.

67 Camaro | 350 | 650 Speed Demon | Dual plane GMPP intake | MSD ignition | Secret Cam (I don't know what it IS!) | 2.02/1.60 Camel Humps ported | Thorley Tri-Y's | 8.5 10 bolt 3.73 | M22
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 04, 02:24 AM
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Jethro
My lights dim to a certain extent with RPM too. I always just thought it was just the nature of the cars electrical system.

Dan
'68 Convertible

Dan
'68 Camaro Convertible

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 1st, 04, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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This is not dimming though... the lights actually flicker slightly... the headlights, dash lights, everything, and only above idle and increasing in frequency/amplitude with increasing rpm. Tonight left a meeting and lights were fine for about 15 minutes, then it started again, making me wonder if it is also related to the battery being fully charged... say, after 15 minutes of driving. I'll try to get to this damn thing... I'm onto the steering column tomorrow for something else entirely... UGH.

67 Camaro | 350 | 650 Speed Demon | Dual plane GMPP intake | MSD ignition | Secret Cam (I don't know what it IS!) | 2.02/1.60 Camel Humps ported | Thorley Tri-Y's | 8.5 10 bolt 3.73 | M22
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 2nd, 04, 06:05 PM
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Try looking at your switch. Could have bad contacts inside with weak springs causing the contacts to chatter with the vibration of the car.

Brandon J. licence 1NASTY67

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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old Jun 4th, 04, 05:50 AM
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Jethro, I had a similar problem and it turned out to be the voltage regulator. All the lights would dim and brighten every few seconds or so. And it only happened above idle. I just started doing a visual and found the battery was actually hot and the electrolyte was vented out of the case seal. Felt the regulator and it was hot as well. I removed the cover and sure enough, it was pretty much toast. Literally. Replaced the regulator and batery and have had no problems since. Hope this helps.
Rick
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