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I'm working on a kit to upgrade the 82-86 headlight motor electrical control system. You can no longer find new isolation relays. I looked at having some made and it was near impossible to do so. So I'm working on a kit to replace the relays and the isolation relay in one sealed unit. It may take more than several months and there is no guarantee I'll be successful but I have made some progress and it looks promising.
This is from a Fiero repair manul and it is not correct for the 82-86 Firebirds
Most that have headlight motor problems want to blame the headlight motors. They replace them with rebuilt headlight motors but many times still experience the same problems. Some replace the relays but again still have the same problems. Why? The problem in most all cases is a diminished path for the voltage and amperage from the battery reaching the armature of the headlight. The armature is spring loaded and if it does not spin with enough strength and momentum it will not operate the contacts in the headlight motors correctly.
The path for the voltage from the battery and back (all the grounds) is a long one. As on any older vehicle, time takes it's toll on the wiring connections, grounds etc. There is never any one place to look. It starts at the battery terminal and little by little the voltage and amperage diminishes along the way. Slightly corroded connections in all the various connectors. Corroded grounds. Every marginal connection diminishes the voltage and amperage to the headlight armature. By the time the voltage gets to the armature in the headlight motor it can be seriously diminished.
The kit I am making eliminates many of these marginal connections. You remove the isolation relay and the relays on each headlight bucket. My unit splices in to the wires from the wiring harness. I include butt splices and adhesive lined shrink tube to make water tight connections. My unit is in a plastic box and potted thus making it waterproof. My unit also has two ground wires coming out of it to insure an excellent ground. You splice on new connectors to each headlight motor, again using butt splices and adhesive lined shrink tube. Once installed the largest part of the headlight control system is now all new and waterproof. Incorporated into this new relay unit are snubbers for each headlight motor. What does a snubber do? It absorbs the arc you get every time the relay opens thus reducing the degradation on the contacts in each headlight motor and the relays in my new unit.
Start date 8-12-2016
My first idea/design:
08-25-2016: Although it will be more than a few months before I would have these kits available I will have a few prototypes for testing ready in a few weeks or so. They will look very close to what the kit will eventually look like. So I am looking for one or two 84-86 Fiero owners that would be interested in trying one. Ideally you would be someone electrically inclined etc. Able to take pictures and work with me on developing the final design and installation and mounting location etc. If interested contact me at email@example.com
09-24-16: Still working on this project. It has taken several twists and turns and it may be a while before I know where this is heading. But I am still fairly confident I will be successful.
12-22-16: My original idea I had for making this upgrade seems to not be feasible at least at this time. The cost to engineer this would be too high considering the small market. We put a lot of time and effort in trying to make this design work. Ultimately it would have been the best way to make these kits.
So on to my second idea/design:
12-29-16: But: I have another option. So I'm looking for a few owners that have the early style headlight motor system and are experiencing battery drain when you car is off or failure to lift, go down etc. I will have an add on electrical device that may fix all these problems. If you have any of these problems and are willing to install and try my device N/C send me an email.
1-21-17: Newest update. My most recent (second idea) idea did not do much to improve the operation of the lift motors. It was a device to make sure both brushes when they were negative had a direct connection to the chassis ground. I really thought this would show a noticeable improvement. So on to the next (third) idea. I'll be working on designing my newest design and I'll have some on hand in a few 3-4 weeks or so.
1-26-17: Making progress. I hope to have a few on hand in 3-4 weeks. Fairly easy to install.
2-27-17: Some delays but making progress as always. I'm closer to have some kits on hand. Looking for a few to install these kits in their 82-86 Firebirds. I will supply you with a kit N/C.
3-14-17: Finally (I hope). I have the circuit board designed and the boards are being made. We will bench test one first to make sure it works as designed. I am waiting on a small quantity of circuit boards so I can make up some test units. I should have some kits on hand to send out to a few to try them N/C for R&D in maybe a couple weeks or so.
Core requests: Stan Miller rebuilds many headlight motors. Stan has a hard time finding cores. If you have any old headlight motors or parts of headlight motors you do not need Stan will buy them from you. Contact Stan Miller at: firstname.lastname@example.org