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MG TD TF 1500 - License Plate Light Wiring

I've commenced installation of my new wiring harness. I'm attempting to intall the license plate wiring through the spare tire frame. If I recall correctly, it is routed through the frame from the bottom, and turns left through the horizotal license plate support. I have been unable to fish the wiring via this routing. Can someone provide some guidance?
Corey Pedersen 1951 TD #7169

Corey, the plate wire comes up behind the piping, against the fuel tank. Then it enters the hole in the upper horizontal pipe. I found it eazier to fish a piece of baling wire down from the license plate area and bring it out of the hole that the wire will go through. I then attached it to the wire in the harness and pulled it through. Bud

Bud Krueger

Corey, dont do what I did years ago and misconnect the wires to the license plate lamp. I was in a hurry and connected the wires backwards to the lanp. The terminals are not marked and I did not check which terminal was to ground. wiring harness from the rear to front after I connected the battery and all the smoke was released from the wires.
Jim Merz

There is no clear path the way you describe. Look closely at how the pipes are welded. They did not drill a hole in the side of the pipe before butting the cross pipe to it. One way is how Bud described it above. I wanted to route it as you described.
I did this by drilling a hole on either side of the weld, putting some small grommets in the holes and fishing the harness through. It came out rather well.

Mort Resnicoff (50 TD-Mobius)

To avoid releasing all the smoke from the harness as Jim describes on his car, when first applying power to the electrical system, put a 10 -15 amp fuse between either the positive or negative post of the and the battery cable. If the fuse blows on attaching both sides of the battery, start disconnecting circuits and trying again until you find the short to ground. Once the fuse quits blowing, but still with the fuse in the circuit, turn the ignition on, try the brake lights and work your way up (you may have to increase the value of the fuse to check the lights and the horns) until you have tested everything except for the starter. Only then should the fuse be removed. This will save a lot of headaches if something is miswired. Cheers - Dave
David DuBois

Wow, lot's of great advice from all.
Dave, I'll intstall a temporary all-circuit fuse as per your recommendation.
Corey Pedersen 1951 TD #7169

Dave's suggestion is a good one, but I have an alternative.

Instead of fusing the circuit and blowing a few fuses, disconnect the battery completely and use a battery charger to power all of the circuits in the car while you are testing everything. This will allow you to test all but the starter (and maybe the horn). You will not blow any fuses, as if you do have a short, the breaker in the battery charger will simply trip.
Lew Palmer

For getting the wire through the spare tire carrier pipe when installing my third brake light I tied a fluff of cotton to the end of a piece of string, hooked my shop vac to the open end of the pipe where the tag holder is and pushed the ball of fluff up to the hole on the underside of the pipe behind the tire carrier. The vacuum immediately sucked the fluff and a bunch of string into the pipe but because the pipe was already almost full with the existing wire the fluff couldn't make it around the two bends in the tag holder S pipe. I ended up loosening the clamp holding the S pipe and letting the vac suck the string first through the straight pipe and then throuhg the S pipe. If wires were not already there I'm pretty sure the vac could have pulled the string through the whole assembly without have to disconnect the S pipe.

J K Chapin

I fished a string through using gravity and rotating the spare tire carrier before attaching the spare tire carrier to the car. I had a couple of false starts routing the wire, and simply pulled the fish line back and forth a couple of times. Pictures are on my website in the electrical section, including the proper routing of the loop once out of the carrier.

Dave Braun

I was way too lazy to take the spare tire carrier off and do it the easy way :-)
J K Chapin

Dave: Not to hijack this thread but I have seen the wiring for the lamp on both sides and also routed behind (like you have) and in front of the license bracket.

Also the wire was originally enclosed in a rubber sheath.

Chris Couper


Great! As my braided cover fades, I can source a sheath! (It was kind of bugging me!)

Dave Braun

Dave: I went around for years with heat shrink until I realized it was just black latex tubing. Its 3/8" ID and 1/2" OD. You need 1 foot.

I had to use some Armorall to keep the tubing from binding on the wire loom during install but then it slipped right through.
Chris Couper

This thread was discussed between 04/08/2013 and 06/08/2013

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