Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Technical Area for all the problems you have in the garage
Post Reply
User avatar
amulheirn
T289R Committee
T289R Committee
Posts: 1207
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 2:30 pm
Location: Surrey/Hampshire
Contact:

Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by amulheirn »

On my way home from Goodwood (as a few people noticed) my lights failed completely. Managed to track it down to a failed head/sidelight switch on the dashboard. I got the right combination of wires on some alternative pins and had enough light to get home with fortunately.

Since then, two different club members have each told me they are on their second switch because they're not very well made. I bought a replacement which is a Lucas clone, but of course I've no way of knowing if that's going to be better or worse than what was in there before - and if I got a genuine Lucas item, would that be any better?

Wondered what anyone else has done here? I guess fitting relays might be the thing to do instead perhaps.

Andrew
User avatar
amulheirn
T289R Committee
T289R Committee
Posts: 1207
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 2:30 pm
Location: Surrey/Hampshire
Contact:

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by amulheirn »

I took the broken switch apart just now - a pin holding one of the brass wipers must have got hot enough to melt its way loose:
0DB51862-549D-45B2-8068-D8D5292DEC34.jpeg
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
User avatar
clive
T289R Member
T289R Member
Posts: 3386
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:18 am
Location: Perth

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by clive »

Do you not have headlight relays in the loom?
Cheers, Clive.

(If I'm not here I'm in my workshop or on the golf course!)
User avatar
StewbieC
T289R Committee
T289R Committee
Posts: 1353
Joined: Mon Oct 13, 2008 12:50 pm
Location: out in the sticks, Shropshire

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by StewbieC »

Indicator relays and canoe fuses are other typical failures.
I always keep a spare relay and I changed the fuses to blade type.
I managed to get a NOS Lucas light switch that seems to have lasted.

Lucas are not known as the "Prince of Darkness" by the Americans for nothing :lol:
________________________________________________
Stu
Hawk 289, 66 Mustang Fastback with a 289 maximum smiles per mile..
User avatar
amulheirn
T289R Committee
T289R Committee
Posts: 1207
Joined: Mon May 13, 2013 2:30 pm
Location: Surrey/Hampshire
Contact:

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by amulheirn »

:D
User avatar
Migge
Posts: 1976
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 5:51 pm

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by Migge »

I guess that's why Ken Miles etc. uses old aircraft switches on their comp. cars. Me too :-)
Special customized BRA289
User avatar
Migge
Posts: 1976
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 5:51 pm

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by Migge »

Picture
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Special customized BRA289
KevinW
T289R Member
T289R Member
Posts: 560
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2015 6:29 pm
Location: West Sussex

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by KevinW »

I had a similar problem with a NOS Lucas rotary wiper switch.
I bought one of these, on Simon's recommendation - pricey, but now I see it is hand-made, I understand why.
https://www.holden.co.uk/p/triumph-tr6-switch-1
Problem solved.
289Glenn
T289R Member
T289R Member
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Jun 10, 2015 6:49 pm
Location: California, USA
Contact:

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by 289Glenn »

My suggestion for the "crappy" Lucas switches is to use them only to control a remote power relay. I never use a dash switch (lights, fans, horn) to send the high current power to the device. Each accessory gets its power from a large gauge power wire going to the battery (Fused of course). Then I secretly hide small 25 amp automotive relays that then send "clean" power directly to the headlights, horn, and or fan. Conventional halogen headlights can illuminate up to 25% brighter just by powering them directly with "battery" power.

If there is enough interest, I will share my conversation with an OEM electrical engineer at FORD. He told me FORD purposely uses too small a gauge wire for the headlights in the F150 trucks. The reason will surprise you.

I have had my dash fan override switch fail 3x. (Combined in the ERA and the Hawk) Lucas does not discriminate. The contacts are just TOO small and they have too much resistance to safely switch that much power. Now my crappy Lucas switches are happy and boy-o-boy (Yank term) does my SPAL fan spin super high RPM now. The fan relay is right next to the thermo switch so now either the thermo or override switch is not loaded down and the fan really roars. Car runs SO much cooler in traffic too.

Super simple to do.

Cheers,

Glenn
User avatar
clive
T289R Member
T289R Member
Posts: 3386
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:18 am
Location: Perth

Re: Crappy 'Lucas' switches

Post by clive »

289Glenn wrote: Wed Mar 15, 2023 12:04 am
I have had my dash fan override switch fail 3x. (Combined in the ERA and the Hawk) Lucas does not discriminate. The contacts are just TOO small and they have too much resistance to safely switch that much power. Now my crappy Lucas switches are happy and boy-o-boy (Yank term) does my SPAL fan spin super high RPM now. The fan relay is right next to the thermo switch so now either the thermo or override switch is not loaded down and the fan really roars. Car runs SO much cooler in traffic too.

Super simple to do.

Cheers,

Glenn
Hi Glenn,

Here in Scotland there is very little need for radiator fans, even in the height of summer! :lol:
Cheers, Clive.

(If I'm not here I'm in my workshop or on the golf course!)
Post Reply