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Buggeee's Big Time 1988 Westy
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 8:31 am    Post subject: Buggeee's Big Time 1988 Westy Reply with quote

BEAR WITH THIS FIRST PAGE PEEPS, THE THREAD BEGAN AS AN ISSUE WITH WIRES AND BLOSSOMED INTO A FULL MONTE READER RIDE BUILD THREAD KIND OF DISCUSSION SO SCROLL DOWN TO THE PICTURE OF THE WHOLE VAN IF YOU LIKE. I'M HOME. AND THIS TIME EVERYBODY LOVES MY WESTY.

Please forgive me for not yet being literate in the later model wiring schematics in Bentley that are a language of multi-page references that I do not yet understand. I am reading and re-reading that to learn this new way, but I am still hampered by my upbringing on spoon-fed simplistic color-coded air-cooled schematics.

If you will look with me here under the driver's side of my 1988 Vanagon Westfalia at the wiring harness by the propane tank, I could use a point in the right direction, because there is a group of wires hanging loose here and I have no idea what they might be for. The PO history on the van is that there was an engine fire and the rear portion of the wiring harness was replaced from a donor car, but no information on where that graft occurred, or whether it was simply a donor engine harness or perhaps the rear section of the main harness as well. I have not yet opened up this area of the harness but will do so in the name of archeology if no one recognizes this group as commonly doing something.

My first guess, and its only a wild guess, is that they might be air-conditioner related? - only because the air-conditioner system is not fully put together, while all the other systems on this new-to-me van are assembled and functioning as far as I can tell. (I don't notice any missing A/C components, but the freon hoses from front to back have been cut in this same general area and are filled with a blob of silicone as can be seen in the second picture, no longer running back to the compressor, which is present).

I twisted the wires to show the colors better in the pictures, the stripes are acually lateral.They are (i) green with yellow stripe, (ii) brown with light blue stripe, (iii) red with white stripe, (iv) green with white stripe, (v) black, as well as (vi) a smaller diameter black wire a few inches rearward.



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Last edited by Buggeee on Sat Jun 08, 2024 5:25 pm; edited 5 times in total
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markswagen
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 9:20 am    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

those are not factory VW colors.
l would have a hunt around, follow that taped loom, where does it go, towards the front, or the rear.
when you find the other end, you'll likely be able to tell us what they were for.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 9:45 am    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Buggeee! That's a good looking Westy. Hope you have some summer camping planned. Factory wiring typically has a lateral stripe not the twisted stripe that you have unearthed. Seems like there was some aftermarket install or plan for the middle of your bus. A mystery to be solved.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 11:06 am    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Might have been an aftermarket cruise control.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 11:13 am    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Depending on the age of your van (it's not in your signature) they may be AC if it is early dealer-installed AC.

They seem too thick for CC
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 4:15 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

termuehlen wrote:
Buggeee! That's a good looking Westy. Hope you have some summer camping planned. Factory wiring typically has a lateral stripe not the twisted stripe that you have unearthed. Seems like there was some aftermarket install or plan for the middle of your bus. A mystery to be solved.


My Dude, thank you it's loved by all too not just me. I just got it. The first shake down run was this Memorial Day weekend I bombed it down the turnpike from Ohio to the coast of Maine, slept at a water front campsite for a few hours, spent much of the day with my daughter graduating from college and moving her off campus and with the last box out of the van rolling home sleeping in truck stops. The season is officially open, and it feels GREAT

I twisted the wires by hand to make the colors more observable in the picture - but the colored stripes are actually lateral.
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 4:16 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

vanis13 wrote:
Depending on the age of your van (it's not in your signature) they may be AC if it is early dealer-installed AC.

They seem too thick for CC


It's a 1988. You are right I need to get a proper build thread established for this one. Those wires are thick aren't they. Mmmmmm
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 4:17 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

4Gears4Tires wrote:
Might have been an aftermarket cruise control.


Fascinating
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 4:19 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

markswagen wrote:
those are not factory VW colors.
l would have a hunt around, follow that taped loom, where does it go, towards the front, or the rear.
when you find the other end, you'll likely be able to tell us what they were for.


That is a really good clue. I will start by relaxing about it and prepare for the archeology.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 8:01 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

The two hoses that are cut off where likely for an AC unit, and its very possible the wires were for the unit as well. The colors are just not typical VW factory colors twisted or not.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2024 8:10 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Wildthings wrote:
The two hoses that are cut off where likely for an AC unit, and its very possible the wires were for the unit as well. The colors are just not typical VW factory colors twisted or not.


My early AC has such color wires.

They may be in an 88 is someone harvested an early system and put it in a 88. I harvested my early system and put in in a 83

Send a pic of your headbanger (that's where the evaporator is)...super curious now what you got!

Also, if you have an early system, I'm developing a much better replacement solution so PM me if you are curious.
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 2:46 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:18 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Thats 88 AC and now the wire mistery is back.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:28 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Have you asked the PO?
The bus appears to be in pretty good condition to have suffered an engine fire (unless it has been extensively rebuilt/painted?). So most likely just the engine harness was replaced.

The wires don't look factory.

I see there's a CD disc changer, is it hooked up and working? Is there an amplifier?
Those wires you're asking about could be left and right speaker channels and a ground - maybe originally going to an amp under the rear seat or cabinet?
This is just a guess. it's hard to tell something like this from a couple pictures.
Maybe root around behind the stereo to see if you can spot similar colored wires.

p.s. If you go to renew the a/c system plan on all new lines and a thorough flush.
Leaving the lines open like that after cutting will have let in all kinds of dirt and moisture.
The new barrier a/c hose is much better than the old stuff anyway.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:36 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

Looks like your fusible link is gone....

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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:46 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

termuehlen wrote:
Looks like your fusible link is gone....

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Ya and good thing too... check out the scary melted red wire it would have been connected too! I'll be addressing the A/C in a thorough way when the time comes, and am reading through threads now about disabling the 4 position on the blower dial and whatever else I find down the A/C rabbit hole. Thank you for the helpful observation and picture. The student is willing.
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:47 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

vanis13 wrote:
Thats 88 AC and now the wire mistery is back.


Confirmed in the field too, the A/C harness is complete from front to back. Thank you Brother.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 3:51 pm    Post subject: Re: What are all these wires for hanging under my 1988 Westy Reply with quote

MsTaboo wrote:


I see there's a CD disc changer, is it hooked up and working? Is there an amplifier?
Those wires you're asking about could be left and right speaker channels and a ground - maybe originally going to an amp under the rear seat or cabinet?
This is just a guess. it's hard to tell something like this from a couple pictures.
Maybe root around behind the stereo to see if you can spot similar colored wires.

p.s. If you go to renew the a/c system plan on all new lines and a thorough flush.
Leaving the lines open like that after cutting will have let in all kinds of dirt and moisture.
The new barrier a/c hose is much better than the old stuff anyway.


Excellent thoughts all the way around and will be thorough on the A/C build when that time comes.

My wife thought it was an 8 track tape player and wayyyy disappointed to hear it's just CDs. Cumon Babe! This Westy is not THAT old! Hahaha. It's not the audiophile instal though, I have the mystery nailed now like Scooby Doo and uploading pictures now.....
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Buggeee
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 5:07 pm    Post subject: Buggeee's Big Time 1988 Westy [fka What are these Hanging Wires] Reply with quote

MsTaboo wrote:
Have you asked the PO?
The bus appears to be in pretty good condition to have suffered an engine fire (unless it has been extensively rebuilt/painted?)....


So, yes I have sent a carrier pigeon to the PO but no response yet.

PO is a reclusive VW buff with a fetish for holding too many Vanagons - with no internet and no desire to be anything but the quiet dude that shows up once in a while at the cruise in a non-descript Vanagon. This one though, he really got into. He was intending to build it for himself. He started with the fire-damaged southern truck that is absolutely crazy dry - no seam rust ANYWHERE. He gutted the rear portion to a shell, blasted to bare metal everything that burnt - underneath, inside and outside, then painted everything inside and out and did the underside with POR 15. It really is meticulous in many respects. This took him 5 years to get it where it stands now, which is how it was when he lost access to an airplane hanger and he had to unload some children quickly. He's a really sweet guy and I am glad to know him, even if he is always skirting around the outside edge of the scene.

This one of his children landed with a mutual friend who has a license to re-house VWs and is always keen on wild-minded opportunities to move things around. This mutual friend had it on the market for quite some time and every time I stopped in to do some buggin' there it would be, waiting. I'd have to hear AGAIN about how it would be perfect for me and I'd have to AGAIN LAUGH at the 80s throwback monochromatic monstrosity of a Westy that he got stuck sitting on in a world made for overlanders.

Then, one day, I showed a picture of it to my partner (the missus) and she said "That one will do it!" I about fell over, she has been pushing me to get us an RV, drags me to those RV shows, and never, ever has cared to be a passenger in any VW I've ever played with. Even the Aircooled Westy that was Hated by All, Loved by Buggeee (an old thread of mine) was a non-starter for her and she would take a second car when we camped with that thing.

I was like "What?!!! are you serious?!!" She's like "Hell ya, I'm an 80's girl that is really cool!." To be fair, she really is an 80's girl, and so is our new Westy! Hahahaha. If Crocket and Tubs drove a Westy, this would be it!

Here is the picture that I showed her off my buddy's Samba ad, which changed both our lives forever. I went all in on our new phase and traded all six (6) of my hoarded project cars plus a taste of cabbage and began a new phase of life (I still have Krankenwagen and the Green Rally Super because those are my personal Frankensteins):

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Now this has clearly become a build thread, so to speak and there is no putting the cat back in the bag, and I will change the title to this thread accordingly and go from here.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 5:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Buggeee's Big Time 1988 Westy [fka What are these Hanging Wires] Reply with quote

That's definitely the 80's look. Is there anything that is not painted red? Reminds me of the white Miami Vice monochrome look. We run those same Audi wheels on our '88 Westy. I think they look great!
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