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Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn
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gmoney1227
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2021 12:41 pm    Post subject: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Hello everyone.

Ahead of time, thank you for your patience. Iíd like your help: I replaced my steering wheel on my Sports Bug and when removing the old one and the horn, I donít know if both of these wires as seen in the picture weíre connected to the two points on the back of the horn. When I pulled of the horn, only only one wire was connected, therefore I assume I mustíve pulled it off inadvertently when taking it off, although it has plenty of slack and I donít think I did; I was very careful when removing the horn button.

But, the horn doesnít work anymore unless I connect that second wire. Obviously that tells me that the second wire is needed, but whatís throwing me off is that all the reading and research Iíve done seems to only show one wire going to the horn button. And the thing is that when I put everything back together, my turn signal lights stopped working for a couple minutes and then working back to normal, with the exception of a nanosecond delay from the time I pull the turn signal lever and dashboard double sided indicator lights come on

So, are both wires indeed needed or am I missing something? I want to make sure I don't cause a short anywhere. Thank you for your direction.
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ashman40
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 16, 2021 9:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Your steering wheel, while probably an original VW steering wheel does not appear to be a stock from the factory wheel. You should probably consider it closer to an aftermarket steering wheel.


The black wire coming from the contact ring at the bottom of the steering wheel is the end of the horn (-) wire. Ground this wire with the ignition switch ON and the horn will sounds. This wire connects to the horn button.

The only question is how your horn button grounds this wire? The stock '72-later steering wheel was grounded thru the steering shaft. So by pushing the stock horn button you bring the black wire into contact with the steering wheel and the horn sounds. Only one wire needed.

Your steering wheel horn button appears to be made from all plastic and I see no contacts around the edge which would ground the horn button to the metal part of the steering wheel. If your horn button has no path to ground... it needs to have a second terminal or wire that can be run to ground. The 2nd wire coming out the top of your steering wheel is connected to the steering wheel or steering shaft itself providing a path to ground. Connect this wire to the horn button and now your button has a way to ground the contact ring wire.
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gmoney1227
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 17, 2021 12:30 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Thank you ashman40 for your reply.

Iím intrigued by what you said about my steering wheel not being stock from the factory. The one I had one originally looks exactly the same and the previous owner told me it was an option on the Sports Bug model, like seen in the picture.

Am I understanding this incorrectly and I donít have a factory steering wheel?
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ashman40
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 17, 2021 9:01 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Iím pretty sure your wheel was sold by VW. The key word is ďoptionĒ. The wiring diagram and maintenance books are based on the typical/original parts.

I canít come up with the correct wordÖ what do you call a part that came from the factory as an option but has a different design/spec than the part commonly used? It is stock. It is factory. It is OE. But it is not the same as the parts used on the majority of the cars that roll off the line so the standard instructions do not apply. Whatís the word for that? If it was made by some other company and just sold as an option it could be classed as aftermarket, but that doesnít appear to be the case here.
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gmoney1227
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 17, 2021 11:52 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Thanks ashman40!

I think I understand what youíre saying. When one orders a certain trim package on a vehicle, it may change the wheels or add certain trim around the car, in this particular spec, if you want to call it that, it changed the steering wheel as well as the seats. But it is Volkswagen OEM steering wheel because itís the Sports bug model.

Yes?
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runamoc Premium Member
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 18, 2021 7:26 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Quote:
Volkswagen OEM steering wheel because itís the Sports bug model.

Yes it is a stock VW steering wheel. A very valuable and desired one. I just put one on my Ghia.The ring on the bottom of the steering wheel rubs on a brush that is part of the turn signal switch. There is a 'jumper' wire from the base of the wheel. In your last photo you can see the brass tab turned in by the screw. That comes up to button. This is the 'switched' ground that goes to the actual horn, or the neg. side of a horn relay. The other wire in the steering column is a ground wire that comes up from the steering shaft to steering box connection. That wire goes to the other side of your horn button. Press the button and contacts in the horn button make the connection and the horn toots.

The brush..
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taped wheel for painting..
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pittwagen
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 20, 2021 1:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

This steering wheel was standard equipment on the 1973 Sports Bug sold in North America. It was not an option. It was also standard on the GSR Beetle sold in Europe. Having said that it was also shown as having been available in 1974 in Canada, as shown in the 1974 accessories brochure listed in the Archives.

The list of standard features on the Sports Bug are well documented. There were also many dealer installed unique accessories for the Sports Bug such as all black bumper guards and fender gravel guards. The dealer had a whole list of special Sports Bug items in addition to the other regular beetle accessories. Wish I had asked for a copy of that list back in May of 1973.

So how did the ground function work for the horn? As has been stated, one wire came to the back side of the button from the lower hub. These pics are from my spare steering wheel and hub. FYI.

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As you can see 5 of the 9 steering wheel bolts went into the plastic cover and 4 went into the metal collapsible steering column structure. The other wire seen in my first pic with the round connection went under one of the collapsible steering wheel attachment bolts.

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gmoney1227, just connect the second wire as in my first pic. If it were me, I would remove the 3 slotted bolts on the bottom of the hub, slide the plastic cover down and verify that the round wire connection is still solidly attached to the metal structure at one of the bolts.
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gmoney1227
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2021 11:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Thank you runamoc and pittwagen. Extremely helpful! Thanks again!
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pittwagen
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 7:45 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Just re-reading my post. The round wire connection actually goes before the nut on the back side of the collapsible steering column structure not between the wheel and the structure on the top side. That's why it just disappears into the structure and the connection can't be seen looking down through the button hole when the unit is all together.

Clean all your ground connections as well. Wire connection cleanliness of any type is probably the most important issue I have faced in my 50+ years of VW-ing. I always do the fuses Spring and Fall (at the very least) as we live in a very damp climate.

Glad we have been able to help.
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gmoney1227
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2021 9:17 am    Post subject: Re: Silly newbie question - 1973 Sports Bug horn Reply with quote

Thanks again pittwagen. I have more questions, if you donít mind. Iíll reach out via PM is thatís ok with you.
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