[Spridgets] Electricity to Horn

Timothy H. Collins thcollin at mtu.edu
Tue Apr 8 18:38:44 MDT 2008

I know that it can be a problem to get a horn to work correctly 
because of the need to have the steering column grounded properly. 
Today I did some investigating & here's what I think I found.

My steering column is newly painted as is the steering rack. The rack 
has several wraps of tape so the rack clamps don't directly touch the 
rack. Right now there is no electrical connection between the rack 
and the clamps. Oh, I should mention that I haven't fastened the rack 
ends to the steering arms yet. Therefore when I try the horn, nothing happens.

However, if I connect a jumper wire from anywhere on the frame to the 
pinch bolt that fixes the steering column to the steering rack, the 
horn will work. So what I need is a wire from the motor mount, rack 
clamp bolt or some other handy bolt TO the pinch bolt. BUT the pinch 
bolt goes roundy, roundy so that wiring arrangement would be tricky.

If your horn is working this means that the current path goes:
a) from the steering rack clamps to the steering rack. Then 
internally from the rack gear to the pinion gear and on to the 
steering column. You get this path because it just happens by 
"accident" (no new paint, no new tape, etc)

b) Or your ground path is from the frame through the steering 
mechanism - like from the shock to the king pin to the steering arm 
to the ball joint on the end of the rack, to the rack gear, to the 
pinion gear and on into the steering column.

Either path is through moving parts - rack and pinion or steering 
gear ( the shock to the king pin to the steering arm, etc) . That's 
20 or so amps that I would guess are sparking and arching their way 
through all those moving parts.

This has worked (?) for 50 years so I guess it's OK. It would be 
interesting search for evidence of arching on some of those moving parts.

Tim Collins

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