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Do-It-Yourself Projects
Auto Wiring and Weatherpack-Style Connectors
By Wayne Scraba/
Printable version
Degree of DifficultyModerate
Estimated Time120 minutes
120 minutes
For the backyard mechanic, this all sounds like bliss. These weatherpack style connectors prove perfect for adding accessories to a vehicle. You get factory reliability and performance, not to mention practicality and pretty good looks. Not that long ago the only method to terminate the wires and assemble weatherpack connectors was by way of a very expensive GM tool. That’s all changed today. The ignition folks from MSD now offer easy-to-use, inexpensive tools designed specifically for the job. That means anyone with a smattering of automotive skill can piece together a very nice wiring harness that, for all intents and purposes looks factory stock. For a step-by-step look at how it’s done, check out the accompanying photos.
Weatherpack Connectors: The aftermarket offers several different configurations of the venerable weatherpack connector. You can specify single-pin, two-, three-, four-, or six-pin models. All are engineered with double lock mechanisms, as laid out in the text.
Different Configurations of Weatherpack Connectors
Weatherpack Connector Kit: When you purchase a weatherpack connector from the aftermarket (MSD, ACCEL, Painless Wiring and others sell them), you’ll find the kit includes an appropriate number of terminal pins (male and female) along with a selection of end seals, but they’re available separately (especially convenient if you make a mistake during the assembly process).
Kits Include Terminal Pins and End Seals
Terminal Pins: Are the components inside the connector that do the job of transferring electricity. Each pin is configured as either female or male (as is each half of the connector). The terminal pins are equipped with double lock tangs that secure the pin within the connector body. By design, they can’t loosen once assembled (without a special tool).
Terminal Pins Transfer Electricity
Silicone Seals: These are used during the assembly of each tower in the connector. The seal is designed to prevent contamination from entering the area adjacent to the wire. Each seal incorporates multiple sealing ribs to keep the terminal pins dry and clean. The connector is sealed as well.
Silicone Seals Block Contamination
Assembly Tools: The key to assembling weatherpack connectors at home is this trio of tools. Without these tools, you can’t work with weatherpacks. MSD sells this set of crimping pliers that are designed for the job along with a special pin extraction tool that's designed to disassemble a completed connector.
Crimping Pliers and Pin Extraction Tool
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