Lotus Elan

Headlamp switch Plus 2

PostPost by: NYK » Fri Nov 16, 2018 2:18 pm

As part of the restoration on my Plus 2 (bought in bits) I'm sorting out the wiring loom. Headlamp lift is now electric but I need to confirm the switching function of the headlamp switch pictured below. It appears to be
1. Pull to position one first contact goes live
2. Twist and pull to second position where first contact switches off and second contact goes live.

Is this correct, as it does not seem very helpful
20181116_140752.jpg and
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PostPost by: LaikaTheDog » Sat Nov 17, 2018 6:58 pm

Twist : side lights front and rear
Pull: lifts the lights and turns on headlights

Stalk down : mainbeam off
Stalk up : main beam on
Stalk pull: mainbeam flash

That's how mine is but i too got mine in pieces... may not be right!
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PostPost by: NYK » Sat Nov 17, 2018 8:06 pm

So just to confirm, yours does a twist as the first operation followed by a pull for headlamps? I’ve just double checked mine which is different to this as it does a pull first and then a twist & pull to the second position.

I can’t get the correct switching operation on mine so perhaps someone has fitted a different switch. I’d be interested in what other cars have fitted. Anyone know if the headlamp switch is still available?
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:46 am

Hi Nic,

As you suspect you have a replacement switch, the original style is no longer available so now they do as your's does and pull first for sidelights and then turn and pull again for headlights

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PostPost by: alan.barker » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:36 am

LaikaTheDog wrote:Twist : side lights front and rear
Pull: lifts the lights and turns on headlights

Stalk down : mainbeam off
Stalk up : main beam on
Stalk pull: mainbeam flash

That's how mine is but i too got mine in pieces... may not be right!

For me the Headlamp Flash is oniy on +2S130 Cars.
Only when the Headlamp Stalk is in Mainbeam position the Headlamp Flash operates. It feeds to Headlamp Solenoid in Engine Bay just before the Rad. My car was 1973 +2S130/4
Alan
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PostPost by: NYK » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:56 am

Robbie693 wrote:Hi Nic,

As you suspect you have a replacement switch, the original style is no longer available so now they do as your's does and pull first for sidelights and then turn and pull again for headlights

Robbie

Hi Robbie, but when the switch is in the second (headlamp) position power to the sidelights is turned off, is this how the switch is meant to operate?. If so, I would need to have a relay that is energised with the headlamps that I could use to send power to the sidelights.
Nic
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:03 am

That's odd and defeats the idea of it functioning as a lighting switch, I must admit I have the original switch fitted and my experience of the newer design is limited to a demonstration in Paul Matty's. They didn't mention it but perhaps the wiring needs to be modified to accommodate it, I am no electrical expert but could you not loop the sidelight and headlight connectors together?

There is another design available https://www.autoelectricsupplies.co.uk/product/1529/category/48 which looks to have the internal wiring required to work as you would expect.

P.S. I would recommend using relays in the headlight circuit either way

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PostPost by: NYK » Tue Nov 27, 2018 10:28 am

I bought my car part stripped but having studied the loom and the lights switch there is no way it could have functioned correctly. Without destroying the light switch it’s not possible to see internally how it was designed to operate in the two different on positions, it may simply be that my switch is duff. I think I saw the switch on one of the Lotus supplier websites so I may see if they can confirm it’s intended operation, else your link above does show a switch that would do the job. You mention using a relay for headlights, so are you suggesting running a heavier duty live up to near the lights and then using the existing headlamp wiring as signal wires to a pair of relays? Is your reason for suggesting relays that the existing lights wiring is relatively thin gauge and perhaps dropping a bit of voltage?
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Tue Nov 27, 2018 11:35 am

Yes and yes - I used relays for the main and dipped circuits in the manner you describe, I also added some in-line fuses as the headlight system is not fused as standard on a late model S130.

The reasons are because, as you say, the wiring is relatively light gauge which does cause a bit of voltage drop but also takes the load away from the switches which is good for their longevity. A more pressing need in my case was because the headlight circuits are protected from overload by rather crude thermal cut-out switches and as I am using 55W halogens the thermal switches would do just that - cut out! Resulting, rather alarmingly, in the sudden extinguishing of light at random intervals. The relays have fixed this and I also noticed a significant improvement in brightness afterwards.

As I say, this applies to a late model S130 with the final, simplified wiring layout and featuring 4 fuses in the dashboard.

Your switch looks like the one sold by Holden https://www.holden.co.uk/displayproduct.asp?sg=1&pgCode=020&sgName=Electrical&pgName=Switches&agCode=0508&agName=Push-Pull+Switches&pCode=31126 and they describe it as a two position switch so it may be working as designed but has been incorrectly chosen by the previous owner.

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PostPost by: NYK » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:01 pm

Interesting comments, I also have the later loom (4 fuses in dash) although there seem to be some minor differences compared to the wiring diagram in the manual. So for example I have not found any of the thermal cut out switches and I have the loom on my bench and have gone through it wire by wire. Since it is no big deal to run a few extra wires into the loom, I will be re-binding it, I may well do as you have done with the headlights.
Regarding the light switch I also had just found that Holden one you link to but notice it is on back order. I think the previous switch you found is probably my best bet, I just need to check it will fit my beautiful new dashboard as I don’t want to be messing that up.
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:19 pm

Thermal switches look like this:

thermal-switches.jpg and


But they may well have been removed for the reasons I described, circuit hopefully protected some other way!

Good luck with the switch, originals sometimes come up on Ebay but they may be worn, I had to replace one in the past because of this

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PostPost by: NYK » Tue Nov 27, 2018 12:23 pm

Thanks for the photo, mine have definitely gone awol
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PostPost by: lotusfan » Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:42 pm

If you can't get the headlight switch you want from Holden you could try Moss Europe, they list the MGA headlight switch 3H3098 for £21.67. It's pull on for sidelights and twist and pull for headlights. This is an alternative to the square Lucas switch that Robbie suggested.
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PostPost by: NYK » Tue Nov 27, 2018 4:58 pm

Thanks Mike, it looks like the one I have so I’ll give it a go
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PostPost by: el torro » Tue Nov 27, 2018 5:53 pm

I have a switch like that as a spare could be for sale if I can find it
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