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Old 01-30-2009, 08:49 AM
GMR GMR is offline
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help getting horn to work

I have a 70's Chevy van tilt column and a 70's Corvette steering wheel. The pictures are all I have for the horn. I have continuity from the contact brush in the column to the horn relay. As you can see, I have the horn button contact as well. I don't have the horn wired up because right now the horn button contact is in constant contact with the contact brush. What other parts do I need and in what order do I assemble them?



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Last edited by GMR; 01-30-2009 at 09:12 AM.
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Old 01-30-2009, 04:46 PM
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Horn Button wont blow blues

What you have there doesn't exactly look like a stock set up to me. You may even have some parts missing. The way it worked from the factory was that the ground to energize the lead coming from the horn relay came up the steering column and when you pressed on the button this grounded it to the steering shaft. This turned the relay on so to speak and the relay sent power to the horn and made it work. You can't run a straight wire up to the horn button because when you turn the steering wheel it would break the wire. GM used a disc with a brass contact ring attached to it that mounted under the steering wheel and in the top of the steering column. It then used a brass pin that went through the steering wheel. This brass pin was spring loaded from the disc and insulated in a plastic sleeve. It transfered the electrical current from the disc and up to the button assembly retainer. That's the thing that has the metal cup and three screws on it. The horn button is supposed to snap on to this with a spring under it. When you press on the button it grounds the metal cup. The brass pin would go in one of the two threaded holes and you need three holes in the steering wheel to hold the plastic retainer that holds the metal cup. The horn button has a spring under it and when the horn button is snapped into the cup, the spring holds pressure against the under side of the button and holds the metal cup away from grounding to the shaft until you press on the button. To see if the disc is even installed underneath the wheel, stick a Phillips screw driver down the hole and touch it to the side of the hole. If the horn does not work then you will need to pull the wheel and look to see if all of the parts are there. Check this link for an exploded view. http://www.nastyz28.com/tech/e-steercol.html I think that you are going to need numbers: 6, 7, and maybe 29. Go to the local pull-a-part and find a late 1970's or an early 1980's GM, car pull the wheel off and take a look. Back then they were all just about the same.

Update: I'm getting old and I don't see as well as I used to, but in looking at your pictures again you may just have the wrong horn button retainer assembly. It looks like you have the pin coming up through the steering wheel and I think that I see the three holes required to hold down the retainer but I don't see a spring to hold the button up. The pin should touch the metal part of the retainer. Try touching a wire from the pin to the steering wheel to see if the horn will blow. If it does you're in good shape! You may just need to get the right horn button retainer assembly and spring. Will the horn button snap into the retainer? Will the retainer screw down to the three holes? If so then all you need is a spring. Check this link for some more help you may need the spacer and shim that is shown here. http://www.ecklers.com/product.asp?p...dept%5Fid=1714

I hope this helps and I tried my best to explain it for you, but I know it sounds confusing. Just don't have to many beers when you work on it. LOL
Chris

Last edited by Chris Kemp; 01-30-2009 at 06:17 PM.
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Old 01-30-2009, 07:45 PM
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The brush is supposed tom be in constant contact with the ring. The ring is isolated from ground by the nylon spaver. Grounding occurs and resulting relay pulls in and horn blows, when contact is made between the metal ring. I have the EXACT set-up and the contact is very touchy. I cleaned it up with emery paper and found it blew constantly because it was out of adjustment. You have all the parts you need ,just keep in mind the current flows from the pin to the ring and then stops . Until you push then current flows form the ring to the ring that holds the button which is ground and thereby completing the circuit.

Hope this helps
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Old 01-31-2009, 10:06 AM
GMR GMR is offline
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Chris and Bob, thanks very much. With your advice I have gotten to the point where the horn will work. Still have a problem though. If I can't figure it out I hope I can come back at you for some more advice. Thanks again.

Last edited by GMR; 01-31-2009 at 10:24 AM.
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Old 01-31-2009, 12:04 PM
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There are 3 pieces in the switch.
The part with the 3 holes that hold it on the steering column.
Riveted to that with nylon rivets is the ring that the horn button snaps on to. These are electrically connected pieces. It is not a solid piece. It is sliced so that it can flex and touch the 3 rd piece. Bottomost piece, that is hot + voltage.When you push on the horn button it pushes the middle piece down to touch the bottomost piece.
S o ytou can see that if there is something in between these pieces you will be contacting continually.
You have half the battle done as you can now get it to stop, but not all the tine. That is what I went thru.
The "adjustment" I refered to is after cleaningin between the middle and bottomost piece, you may have to pry up on the middle piece to be sure it is not contacting the bottom piece. Then put the button back on and try. May take several attemps.
If you can find some nylon rivets or bolts you may want to take it apart to see if anything is in there causing a problem. You know, like a drill chip or something.
I just took mine apart to make sure what I was Talkin' about.
Funny, for months i was trying to figure out how to unscrew that darn button. LOL
Mine is in a lot worse shape then yours and I got it to work so you should be able to get some emery paper inbetween and clean up the surfaces for good contact and at the same time eliminate any short circuits.
There must be some rust or other accumulation between the
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Old 01-31-2009, 08:51 PM
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Bob, I guess you saw my first response before I decided to edit it. I didn't want to ask too many questions before trying harder to solve the problem. Anyway, thanks for the explanation, it really helps. I guess my biggest problem was I didn't know exactly how contact was made - now I do.
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Old 02-01-2009, 06:10 PM
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Thanks Chris and Bob, got the horn working, much appreciated.
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