I have read a few blogs where builders have really struggled with this task. Owning a econoseal connector tool made it easy for me, and I strongly recommend you borrow or purchase one for this task. Yes, it’s possible without, but by now you would have realised that having the right tools for the job makes building (and later servicing and repairing) a Caterham a lot more enjoyable and far less stressful. I purchased my Econoseal Connector tool in 2013 and have used it many times since, not least during my two builds; I have also lent it to friends who needed it, so by now the tool owes me nothing.
I start the process of installing a repeater using a couple of meters or so of thin wire which I insert into the wing stay. The wire is pushed up the wing stay and out through the middle hole opened out in the front wing during front wing preparation.
I then apply a little heat shrink to the green wire, for protection. Then I apply some 4mm internal diameter silicone hose (black for looks) over the green wire. This is to protect the green wire from rubbing on the earth connection, which is either a pop rivet or self tapping screw into the wing stay.
As the next step I cut off the connector and solder on the guide wire. I suppose you could apply tape, but that’s going to make fitting the dreaded rubber grommet way more difficult to achieve.
Pulling the guide wire back through the wing stay is the easy bit. I only pull it to the point where the joint just appears outside the wing stay, then I feed the guide wire back into the wing stay, so I am fitting the grommet on the smaller thinner guide wire, not the repeater wire.
With the grommet fitted, I then hold the grommet as I pull the solder joint (and the repeater wire) through the grommet. It really is as simple as that with that Econoseal connector removed.
Installing the heat shrink on the exposed green wire is next. To create a neat finish, I heat a few centimetres near the grommet, so I can slide the shrunk heat shrink into the grommet covering the wire as it exits the grommet.
Now I heated the rest of the heat shrink ready for tie wrapping to the rear of the front upper wishbone. There is an IVA requirement for the wire to be protected as it enters the side skin of the car. The kit recommends using excess washer bottle hose (of which there is plenty), but this doesn’t produce the finish I am looking for, so I use some more 4mm internal diameter black silicone hose.
I secured the repeater wire to the wishbone with three tie wraps and one tie wrap on the ball joint with the upright to avoid the wire from contacting the spring. Make sure the steering can go from lock to lock before tightening the tie wraps.
The green wire goes into the head light connection Econoseal, next to the other green wire for the front indicator, and finally I could install the yellow plastic locking insert, and call the headlight connections done.
I prefer to use a pop rivet for the earth connection over a self tapper. The pop rivet is blunter (although not by much) and therefore in my mind less likely to damage the green wire in the wing stay. A quick check that the earth is good with the multimeter is prudent, because the connection is only made to the chassis using the braided brake lines. A tie wrap was added for completeness. Note, the nylocs holding the repeater have white inserts, so the nut is imperial.
- Heat gun
- Soldering Iron
- Econoseal tool
- Side cutters
- End cutters
- Pop rivet tool
- 5/16″ 1/4″ drive socket
- 1/4″ drive ratchet