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Headlamp Flasher

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Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
Hi,

I'm new to this Forum.

I have a 1980 Triumph TR7 which I have owned for the last 30 years, and only used in the Summer.

Took it out for a spin for the first time on Sunday and I noticed that the headlight flasher does not work.

The main switch operates the headlights fine but the flash operation by flicking the Dip/Beam/Flash stalk does not work.

I wondered if it was something as simple as a fuse or relay or the actual stalk itself.

Does anyone have any idea where to start looking first.

Thanks.

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nick Avatar
nick nick m
Bend, OR, USA   USA
By flash operation I assume you mean the capability of bumping the stalk and having the headlights illuminate, raise and retract. Not all markets had flash capability. The US cars did not. I believe the UK cars did have them. Others, I don't know. Having a US spec car I'm no expert, but I believe the flash feature is done within the penktron unit located with the fuses in the glove box. So your problem could be there or in the switch in the steering wheel stalk.



nick

Darth V8R Avatar
Darth V8R Vance Navarrette
Beaverton, OR, USA   USA
1980 Triumph TR8 "Wedgie"
In reply to # 1287926 by Headers Hi,

I'm new to this Forum.

I have a 1980 Triumph TR7 which I have owned for the last 30 years, and only used in the Summer.

Took it out for a spin for the first time on Sunday and I noticed that the headlight flasher does not work.

The main switch operates the headlights fine but the flash operation by flicking the Dip/Beam/Flash stalk does not work.

I wondered if it was something as simple as a fuse or relay or the actual stalk itself.

Does anyone have any idea where to start looking first.

Thanks.

The Pektron unit is the first place to look, as that controls the "flash to pass" function on the European cars. It is located in the back of the glove box, behind the removable panel. The factory thoughtfully labeled the unit "PEKTRON" so there is no doubt as to its identity. The relays are all round, and the size of a 35mm film can, while the Pektron is square.

The US cars got a different Pektron, a rather stupid one that simply buzzes if the seatbelt is not fastened or the keys are left in the ignition. The Europeans get all the cool stuff. <whimper>

You should also be aware that the combo headlight/horn/turn indicator switch has a rather interesting failure mode that may be relevent. The flash circuit is controlled by a pair of contacts in the switch that are opened by a rather thin (2mm? <shrug>winking smiley white plastic finger about 10mm long. In my case, this activates the high beam function (US spec). I believe this is the part of the switch that also activates the Euro flash function.

Anyway, this finger gets rather brittle after 35 years, and it breaks off. If you are lucky it will eventually work its way out of the switch and end up on the floor. Much head scratching ensued when I found it in my TR8. When I eventually tried the high beam function, I realized what had happened. My Mini Cooper had the same switch, which failed in the same manner so it is a widespread failure apparently.

The only solution is to replace the switch, the plastic bit is not repairable as it is too delicate to glue, and in any event will break again in the same place. A symptom to note is that the fore/aft motion of the stalk gets very sloppy when this happens. Instead of a crisp spring detent action, it simply flops back and forth perhaps 20 mm. Tsk, tsk.

I avoided buying a used switch for fear it would quickly fail, instead paying a few bucks more for a NOW switch. We will see how long it lasts.

Cheers,

Vance



1980 Platinum Metallic TR8, navy blue interior
Bare metal respray, Crower cam, raised compression
ported heads, modified Zenith carbs, 0.060" overbore

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Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
Many thanks for the advice i will start with the pektron relay . I'll let you know how i get on after this weekend

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nick Avatar
nick nick m
Bend, OR, USA   USA
N/A



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2015-05-07 02:00 PM by nick.

acltpvd charles frink
Mass, USA   USA
Just a quick question. Do the headlites come up, flash and return to a closed position. Perhaps if there was a way one could use the aux driving lites as flasher units ? I have seem headlites with the flasher uses but the lites stay down and the flash feature can not be seen unless one is standing in front of the car and looking directluy at the headlites. ???????

acltpvd charles frink
Mass, USA   USA
As a P.S. NICE CAR !!!!!

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nick Avatar
nick nick m
Bend, OR, USA   USA
In reply to # 1288743 by acltpvd Just a quick question. Do the headlites come up, flash and return to a closed position. Perhaps if there was a way one could use the aux driving lites as flasher units ? I have seem headlites with the flasher uses but the lites stay down and the flash feature can not be seen unless one is standing in front of the car and looking directluy at the headlites. ???????

In normal mode the lights go on and then the pod raises. My guess is in the flash mode the sequence would be the same.



nick

Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
Yes when i pull the stalk back the headlamps raise up and close down. Sometimes its a bit embarassing as it takes quite a long time by which time the car/person you are flashing had gone !!!
I have found the pecktron relay cleaned the contacts etc but still no joy. There was another smaller relay but i dont know what that does. See pics. I checked the light switch which seems to work fine so i guess the next step will be to check the stalk unless anyone knows better

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Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
The pecktron relay


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ozkippy Michael Kip
Emerald, Victoria, Australia   AUS
1976 Triumph Stag "Staglet"
1978 Triumph TR7 "Yellow Wedge"
1979 Triumph TR7
John,
The that is the Headlamp circuit breaker. If there is an overload during the headlight opening it 'blows' and then resets itself.
Michael

Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
Managed to take another look at the wekend.

The indicator/light stalk works fine.

When you pull back to flash the blue high beam light on the dash illuminates, and the headlights if swithed on flash.

However with the headlights switched off they still dont 'pop up' when I pull back the stalk.

I'm going to have another look at the pektron unit, maybe find a replacement.

Tri-Al Avatar
Tri-Al Al Markowski
Cleveland, OH, USA   USA
Why would the headlights "flash" if they're not up and on? Don't they need to be up and on, first? Never noticed. Just use mine in daylight! "A gentleman does not motor about at night" (Jos. Lucas)

Darth V8R Avatar
Darth V8R Vance Navarrette
Beaverton, OR, USA   USA
1980 Triumph TR8 "Wedgie"
In reply to # 1302632 by Tri-Al Why would the headlights "flash" if they're not up and on? Don't they need to be up and on, first? Never noticed. Just use mine in daylight! "A gentleman does not motor about at night" (Jos. Lucas)

Al:

The US cars have a different wiring harness and pektron unit. The Euro cars have a flash to pass feature. When activated, both headlights turn on, pop up, descend and shut off. It works best if both headlights raise and lower at the same speed, which on cars as old as ours seldom is the case.

North American cars do not have this feature, and instead get seatbelt warning buzzers. Drat.

If the headlights can be activated by the headlight switch, and raise and lower correctly, then the only thing that it can be is the Pektron unit. The Pektron is essentially a time delayed switch that gets activated by a momentary contact switch. Once activated, it turns on the headlights just as if the actual light switch had been toggled. Once it "sees" that the headlights are both up, a brief delay ensues, after which it shuts itself off and in so doing shuts off the headlights. IIRC, the running lights are NOT activated during this process, only the headlights.

For north American cars, the Pektron time delay switch gets replaced with a Pektron buzzer. They are identical in appearance except the buzzer has a small "speaker grill" on its face, to allow the sound to escape and annoy the driver to the point of becoming an axe murderer. angry smiley Like I said, the Europeans get all the good stuff.

I will go chop up a small, helpless furry animal now...

Vance



1980 Platinum Metallic TR8, navy blue interior
Bare metal respray, Crower cam, raised compression
ported heads, modified Zenith carbs, 0.060" overbore

Headers John Headland
Nottingham, Notts, UK   GBR
Good Point how do I know they flash if they dont pop up?
Well if I turn the headlamps on, and flash, then acording to the wife standing at the front of the car, they flash.

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