Series lll Horn borescope

Hello all. I have been trying to figure out the horn button, rod, brush etc. in my 1973 series lll. The horn quit working and I was able to narrow it down to the horn rod and some internal part that was the problem. I removed the rod, polished the rod, dressed up the end, polished the horn button and steering wheel nut (contact point for the horn button). I sprayed an ample amount of contact cleaner down into the steering column tube. I then inserted a long philips head screw driver into the column and it touched something internally that honked the horn. I then got a borescope and took a peak inside and found what looks to be a contact wire with a “cap” on the end. The wire is in the middle of the steering column, touching nothing. I must have centered it better, because when i reinserted the horn rod, it made contact and works fine now. The horn rod is no longer available, however I was able to “dress mine up”.
Attached are some pictures of the “Wire with the cap”. I guess i am uncertain as to how to upload pictures. Any help with that is appreciated.
Regards,
rfc
PICT0000
PICT0001
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Welcome to the Forum, it is great to have another S3 owner with us.

Rod

Great to be here Rod. Look forward to getting into the nuts and bolts of the Slll.
Regards,

Raymond

Well, if the horn is your biggest immediate issue you are in much better shape than a couple of us in the middle of complete nut and bolt restorations.

Oh, and about getting into the nuts and bolts - Just a word of warning - If you are like us, once you start digging into the car it does not stop until you have a bare tub and parts everywhere. So if a reasonable cost driver is your goal, be careful how deep you dig.

I bought my 71 2+2 and 74 OTS in the early 1980’s, drove the 74 in the summer until 1987 and then parked both of them in my shop for the next 35 years, only starting to redo the 74 about 2 years ago. It was so long ago I parked them that I do not even remember what caused me to stop driving them, but don’t recall any serious issues. Of course 35 years of total neglect was not kind, and I started with a complete engine overhaul, rebuild of the IRS and work on some subassemblies. I recently repainted the monocoque and front frame and am about to start putting it back together with new wiring, rubber, interior, cooling system and much more.

The project is not a sound economic investment, and was never intended to be, but if things go well I will have a like-new Series III. If not, I will have a really expensive piece of artwork. I still work more than full time and have other competing interests, so it is slow going.

You will find the group here to know just about anything worth knowing about these cars and passionate about it. In terms of information and parts availability, it is a different world than the pre-internet world of the 1980’s when I was last into Jaguar work, and the only resources I knew about were the rather inadequate shop manual and a couple of paper catalogs. If it was not for the comfort level provided by this resource and others, I never would have had the nerve to take this project on.

I also have 2 XK-140s that are together, and about 2-1/2 not together, so I have a lifetime of projects in backlog.

Best wishes
Rod

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It’s many years since I had my S3 (Roman numerals were for the older sedans) but AFAIK all E-Types after about 68/69 used a horn button on the end of the indicator stalk.

I only mention it because since your car appears to be non-standard in this respect, you may find that any subsequent purchase of wiring harness or switch components, etc. may result leave you with parts that don’t quite fit.

Er no - series 3s - well at least the early ones had the horn button in the center of the steering column not on a stalk.

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Thanks again guys. Rod, I am intimately familiar with the XKE. I owned a Series ll for about 8 years and drove the wheels off of it. I used to say i never went under 100 mph. My cousin had a Series lll 2+2 and only got to drive it on weekends and holidays, as it was in the shop the rest of the time (perhaps that is why you parked yours, lol). But I always loved the way the car looked. I remember being able to buy any part for the car through the Sears Catalog. I bought this car about 10 years ago and it is in fine condition, having won 2nd at the Winter Park Concours d’Elegance. It does not need a restoration, but just a little attention. Sense retiring, I now have more time to spend with her and perhaps she will “feel the love” and not let me down! But it is a Jaguar, so you never know. Thanks again!

RFC

Peter, you are quite right. I shall not use Roman numerals moving forward.
I have already learned something new.
Thanks,
rfc

No, sorry, I still believe you wrong on that point. Full disclosure: I’ve written half a dozen small books on Jaguars including one each on six cylinder and twelve cylinder E-Types.

That in itself can mean little and guarantees bugger all, but having owned every series, body style and engine type means I vaguely know my way around them.

The S3 had a smaller, fatter, leather-rimmed steering wheel. Unlike the sixes, instead of the famous E-Type badge, the S3s had a crude moulded rubber centre, for ‘safety’ reasons. This precluded use of the central horn push, which had already been abandoned for a button on the turn signal stalk a few years earlier.

Of course, many S3 owners, including myself, fitted some type of wood rim wheel, although since all V-12s had power steering, it wasn’t necessary to use the original 16 inch diameter version. 50 years later, all bets are off as far as originality is concerned but the parts book and workshop manual show what was originally fitted.

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Peter I have owned my current series 3 Etype since 1982 and when bought it had not been modified. It is the 11th RHD OTS made.

It has always had the centre horn push - I cannot find the Handbook at the moment but in the genuine Service and Repair manual, section 86.30.01 says

Nothing about the indicator stalk.

Well, I have a copy of the Series 3 Operating Manual, and this is on Page 8…

It also shows the same location for RHD cars. Is this some sort of Mandela effect, where people remember things that just aren’t true? Is there anyone here who currently owns an S3 who has a horn push on the stalk?

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Perhaps this a North American vs. ROW issue? I don’t know the answer to that, but the 1972 E-Type I got in February of 1984 had the horn switch located in that rubber push in the center of the steering wheel. I know my car had been repainted at some point, but every other aspect appears to be factory. As Peter noted on his, I also replaced the original steering wheel with one from a Series One E-Type. It’s an easy conversion, with the only modification required being to shorten the brass rod by a bit.
Jay

I am well and truly blown out of the water, gentlemen, thanks.

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Luckily you did not mention the horns in your S3 book, so you’re safe.

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I will join the crowd of S3 owners with a center-push horn.

Yesterday I checked my 70 FHC, which has a horn switch on the end of the indicator stalk. Same on a one-owner 69 OTS I drove last night and my stolen OTS. Normally, I would referred to it as a pushbutton, not a switch, but that what the original handbook calls it in Fig. 3. Page I “ Instruments and controls.”


So the change to stalk button is unarguable for the sixes from S1.5 onwards albeit only mentioned in one of the big E type originality books (Clausager, Porter, Russ, Haddock or Mueller/Haddock).

Presumably the S3 handbook talks only about centre push operation. Hence my ex Rex Harrison RHD S3 OTS must have been modified and that’s what led me astray. I can’t think of other examples where Jaguar changed something to a different system and then went back to the old system a few years later.

Interesting, or extreme nerdism? You decide.

O

There are a couple I can recall:

  1. Clutch adjustment - manual adjustment up until middle of 4.2 S1s. Then “hydrostatic” (no manual adjustment required), then back to the original manual adjustment for Series 2s.

  2. Powering of the clock - initially powered off the main 12v battery. Then changed to a separate 3v battery (prevented the need to reset when battery disconnected), then reverted to using main 12v battery.

I imagine that the horn change resulted from negative customer reaction to having the “horn on a stalk” rather than in the traditional wheel center location. The stalk solution may have been forced on Jaguar when they didn’t have time to re-engineer the system for the collapsible steering column that was dictated by US Federal regulations in 1968. By the time the Series 3 came along they’d cracked that problem…?

Early XK120’s had a single brake system but later ones used a tandem system. Then the xk140 went back to a single system which was used ny all cars into the '60’s.

To answer the OP’s question, or to confirm how it works, the horn push provides the grounding contact for the horn relay winding. The steering wheel is earthed and pushing the horn push transfers that contact onto the (probably brass) blob thing on the end of the wire. I expect there is or was an insulating collar around that blob/wire end to prevent accidentally grounding the circuit.

The 1974 Parts Manual may show it more detail.

kind regards
Marek

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I think I have posted photos of the relevant sections of the upper steering column. My comments in the captions.
Marek (or others) will have the best expertise to explain how the various bits work when you honk the horn


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