I took the car out after dark for the first time since the dash rebuild and discovered that the bulb illuminating the gear selector was (still!) out. This bulb has never worked, and it just wasn’t worth it before to dig down and figure out why.
Also, the dead fender-mounted turn indicators got even more annoying when I figured out that the right turn blinker doesn’t reliably self-cancel. It’s one thing to be old, in an old car, but I can’t stand the thought of being old, in an old car and driving for miles and miles oblivious to a right turn signal blinking . . . blinking . . . blinking.
Oh, and the horn doesn’t work.
So, off came the wheel—no puller needed since I do this so often. The circuit for the gear selector bulb tested out fine. Changing the bulb out with a new one (with a little wiggle in the socket) and it came to life. There is probably a little corrosion in there, but I’m learning that with electrical parts, regular use is the best prevention to failure. Now that it’s working, I suspect it will continue to light up reliably in the future.
I found that, for whatever reason, the turn signal switch is not providing power down the two (yellow and red) wires that feed the fender indicators. Since the wires exist, this has to be the correct switch (the ’64 switch, I believe, is unique to this model year), so I suspect a problem in the switch itself.
The switch is riveted together, so there’s no good way to actually repair it. Instead, I jumped power from the wires that feed the front indicators to also feed the fenders—tricky work up under the dash with everything assembled. It was a simple fix with no permanent changes at all to the wiring harnesses. Nice to see the indicators light up, and to know that there’s no need to pull them off the fenders to get them going again.
I made no progress at all with the horn. The brush that makes contact with the steering wheel is jammed deep in its housing, which is part of the turn indicator switch. So, there’s three strikes against this switch: no horn, unreliable canceling and no power to two wires. Looks like I’m in the market for a better one.