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  1. #1
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    Default Where to buy automotive grade wire for engine harness?

    I've got to do a little bit of rewiring and finally properly loom up the engine harness. In the past I've made due with sub-par solutions or reused harness wire. This time I'd like to purchase and stock myself up with some automotive grade wire that will be at home in an engine bay. I could buy from Summit Racing or something, but I wasn't sure if anyone had any good tips. I've looked at DIY Auto Tune and found something that would work but I don't need nearly that much wire nor do I need the labeling to confuse things.

    Where should I buy wire from?

    And on a related note, where should I buy heat resistant braided loom, and also larger sizes of heat shrink wrap?






  2. #2
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    Autozone has a good selection of shrinkwrap. I bought two rolls of it for my engine harness. Unfortunately most engine wires are 20 gauge, and the rolls are best suited for 16 gauge .
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  4. #4
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    I bought my flexible wire loom that is pictured at Fryes Electronics. Its about half the price of Summit and I dont pay shipping. 8 feet of 3/4 loom is like 6 bucks.

  5. #5
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    I have plenty of smaller shrink wrap from a giant bunch I bought at Harbor Freight or something years ago. I am looking for really large stuff for the thicker part of the harness. I think I'm all set now.
    Good tip on Fryes for the loom. I'll check there too.

  6. #6
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    Links and part numbers to what you all bought would be amazing and make this thread a sticky perhaps.

    Brent
    1993 NX2000 -- Slate Grey Metallic, a few mods.

  7. #7
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    The goal is to end up with something like this Honda engine harness. Not super over the top, but clean and nice.





    The wire loom and shrink wrap purchases might help others, but I only need a tiny bit of wire and only in one size, so that parts list is not going to be super helpful.


    I'm also weary of how I'm going to get the non-split loom over the plugs since I already have them all on there. But the heat shrink will be even harder. I could cut all my plugs and re-crimp but I hate that idea. I'm going to see if I can cleanly de-pin all the plugs, slide the loom and heat shrink on, then re-pin the plugs. If that doesn't work I might have to go with split-loom and electrical tape.

    Edit: That's not an option. I'm gunna do this right.

    Edit 2: I think I have a new plan. I've already shortened most of the wires during the tuck and I took out the length inside the passenger compartment by the ECU plug. I will just cut or de-solder the wires there and that will allow me to slide the loom and heat shrink where I need it and get everything done up nicely.
    Last edited by BenFenner; 05-31-11 at 12:45 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenFenner View Post
    Waytek has some nice stuff, I used them the last time I redid my harness. IIRC, I used the GXL wire...it's nice and flexible with some heat resistance. You can also purchase supplies from PRS Catalog
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  9. #9
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    GXL looks good. TXL seems to also be slightly better (60V versus 12V) and slightly less expensive? An EE buddy recommended one of the types. I'll have to ask him again which he prefers for this app.

    Edit: I'm told MTX is the "lightest" (weight I guess?) and still rated for 125C so that might be the stuff to buy.

    Edit 2: I don't see MTX as an option. Asking Dan Martin for clarification. He probably meant the GXL stuff.
    Last edited by BenFenner; 06-01-11 at 02:58 PM.

  10. #10
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    The flexible loom when you push it together it opens up to double its normal size to slip over connectors.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenFenner View Post
    GXL looks good. TXL seems to also be slightly better and slightly less expensive? An EE buddy recommended one of the types. I'll have to ask him again which he prefers for this app.

    Edit: I'm told MTX is the "lightest" (weight I guess?) and still rated for 125C so that might be the stuff to buy.

    Edit 2: I don't see MTX as an option. Asking Dan Martin for clarification.
    Let us know what you go with, Im working on my harness now and would love to know what works good..

    Ive definitely seen some pretty trick harness's on 240's and Hondas that probably could be replicated pretty easily for a personal application.

    -DG:. SR20's since 97
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheRealNighthog View Post
    The flexible loom when you push it together it opens up to double its normal size to slip over connectors.
    I was aware of that, but that is a good thing to remember.

    The killer is the heat shrink. =/

  13. #13
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    Is there electrical tape that could be like heat shrink? Wrap it around then heat it to become indestructible?
    00 G20t KH3- Loller Rocker + GT28 + 6 Speed
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vadim View Post
    Is there electrical tape that could be like heat shrink? Wrap it around then heat it to become indestructible?
    Now that would be awesome!
    -DG:. SR20's since 97
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  15. #15
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    Right now I think I'm settled on the TXL wire instead of the GXL. They are both rated to 125C (257F) but the TXL is cheaper, rated for 60V versus 12V, and weighs less.

    I think I want the Polyolefin Dual Wall heat shrink (cheapest automotive grade heat shrink they seem to have).

    It took some digging but I found their regular expandable loom is good to 125C as well (257F) so that looks like I've got everything I need in the one place.

    I'm just going to have to decide what sizes to buy and how much. I need some small stuff about 1/8" or 1/4". I need some medium stuff about 3/8 or 1/2 and then some large for the entire loom bundle through the firewall which is probably about 3/4" or so. Maybe I'll just buy a whole bunch in many sizes and make sure I have what I need and just have the rest for other projects.

    Okay I think I'm going to put this order in so I'll have everything I need. I know it is overkill, but maybe when I'm done someone else will buy the rest off of me and do their harness, then sell it again down the line until it is all used up. We'll see. If I end up with a stock-pile of heat shrink and loom it won't be the end of the world.


  16. #16
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    Just put the order in. It's time to stop fucking around and finally get this last part of the car done. Hundreds of feet of loom, dozens of feet of heat shrink, and 1,000 feet of 18 gauge wire coming my way.
    (In case anyone thinks I'm nuts... Those were all the minimum amounts you could order. )

    FYI I got black wire for dedicated grounds, red wire for dedicated power, green wire for (sensor) signals, and orange wire for switched grounds. That should be plenty for me. I'm not building a harness from scratch.
    Last edited by BenFenner; 06-01-11 at 04:43 PM.

  17. #17
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    NICE! I think this will help people plan when they do similar projects. I wanted to do this in both cars and just never got around to it. I hope to some time though.

    Brent
    1993 NX2000 -- Slate Grey Metallic, a few mods.

  18. #18
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    You know I'll report back with what sizes were most useful, and how much of each thing you might need, and how to best go about dealing with getting the stuff on the harness without totally ruining things or adding unnecessary crimp or solder joints.

  19. #19
    The Little SE-R Guy
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    I know this is a bit off topic... but how many feet do you think one would need to replace the engine harness and the harness running from the junction under the dash through the fender and under the hood (lights etc...)

    Would 1000 feet be enough for everything?


    I know someone in SR20DEEP was talking to Chase Bays but nothing ever panned out.

    I am planning on getting a big peg board and FSM and lengthening a stock harness for a tuck then remaking it will mil-spec wire nice loom, labels to each part etc...

    I am also planning on using a master disconnect at the firewall so that I can just disconnect that, remove some parts and drop the trans, axles, motor and crossmember as one unit.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimithin7000 View Post
    I know this is a bit off topic... but how many feet do you think one would need to replace the engine harness and the harness running from the junction under the dash through the fender and under the hood (lights etc...)

    Would 1000 feet be enough for everything?


    I know someone in SR20DEEP was talking to Chase Bays but nothing ever panned out.

    I am planning on getting a big peg board and FSM and lengthening a stock harness for a tuck then remaking it will mil-spec wire nice loom, labels to each part etc...

    I am also planning on using a master disconnect at the firewall so that I can just disconnect that, remove some parts and drop the trans, axles, motor and crossmember as one unit.
    I would def love a new harness.. Chase has some pretty sick honda / 240 harness's Pretty nice stuff. That pic I actually posted was from Chase Bays, They are a little pricey but im sure its labor intensive.
    -DG:. SR20's since 97
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  21. #21
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    I like to figure about 5-7 feet for each wire you're going to run (some will be longer, some will be shorter). For the ECU plug alone that's about 30 wires give or take. Multiply that by 7 feet to be on the safe side and you're looking at 210 feet of wire for an entire engine harness at the maximum.
    1,000 feet is WAY overkill. If this web site didn't have 250 feet minimum order on this type of wire I would have gotten much less. For a whole harness you could do something like 70 feet of four main colors and maybe 35 feet of an assortment of four other colors and be well set.
    Maybe some length of some thicker gauge wire too for some stuff like grouped grounds and slightly higher power draw stuff.

    The headlight harnesses are going to be even less wire. But you'll want thicker gauge.

  22. #22
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    Hahahahahahaha!

    Apparently when you order 4-foot sections of heat shrink in their minimum quantity of four, that means you're going to get 16 feet of each.

    Hahahahahahahaha! I feel like I could heat shrink the world now.
    Last edited by BenFenner; 06-06-11 at 06:07 PM.

  23. #23
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    You should start heat shrinking random things around the house and work and see if people notice it
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  24. #24
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    when i did my harness i purchased the majority of materials of summit.

    stratton.

  25. #25
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    Yah the minimum order amounts with Waytek really make it less than ideal to purchase from. I'd recommend looking at PRS Catalog like javier said or go to a place like Summit.

    I should have shopped around more so I could buy less.

  26. #26
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    I would just sell the left overs on the forum, someone here could probably use it.
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  27. #27
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    Will you be doing a "build thread" of your harness(i.e from beginning to end ) or will it be in your other build thread? It would be an interesting thing to see.
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  28. #28
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    It's gunna be in my regular build thread. I have brakes to do on the Beetle and then try to fix a power steering leak for real this time. Then the wiring harness gets the overhaul. I'll post here too if you'd like when those updates go up.

  29. #29
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    Six years later, here are the pics.
    I'm hoping to redo the harness (at least get started) this weekend.

    I'm pretty sure I bought enough heat shrink to completely heat shrink the harness, and probably have enough to do two more after that. I'm going to stick to the original plan though, and use it just to anchor the loom ends.






  30. #30
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    good god haha that def is a whole lot of tube
    Big man little car

    Keep regurgitating bullshit info while other people push the game to a whole different level

  31. #31
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    For those of you who wanted to see this happen, the pics start on post #1064 on my build thread and go on for a few posts after that.
    I don't have the final total yet for how much actual loom and heat shrink (of each size) I used but I will have that for you soon enough.

    For those of you who just want to see the damn harness as it sits right now, here you go. (The coil wiring and ground wiring still needs work.)


  32. #32
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    ^^^ Looking nicee and clean!!
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  33. #33
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  34. #34
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    Depends... What are you trying to accomplish?

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    Wow that llooks intense.

  36. #36
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    This won't be done to a dd, but it will do some minor autocross and drag.
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  37. #37
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    I'm just wondering what you're trying to do. I assume by another post you made that you have an OEM harness you've de-loomed and you want to re-loom it.

    Instead of asking you a bunch of questions, I'll say this. If you want to save TONS of time, get split loom (it is out there, and even in a mesh design if you prefer). And realize you're going to use some electrical tape. If that's what you want, don't buy that stuff.

    If you're okay with trying to get this non-split loom over things, but still realize you're going to save a lot of time by using electrical tape, then by all means go ahead and buy that stuff. You'll be fine.

    If you want to go the full monte and use the non-split loom and the damn heat shrink, then I would recommend finding something with a higher melting point (if that is even possible) to make the work with the heat gun less stressful and annoying.
    Last edited by BenFenner; 06-19-12 at 07:37 PM.

  38. #38
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    You know, I need to read more. Didn't even realize it wasn't split loom! Lol
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  39. #39
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    I'm only interested in putting braided loom on visible wires. What size loom would you guys recommend for injector, MAF and fan wires?
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  40. #40
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    as small as possible for the amount of wires it will surround
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