Austin Champ lights, stop lights, indicators
Austin Champ lights, stop lights, indicators.|
The Austin Champ was not built with stop lights or indicators. But it would be unwise to drive on todays roads without stop lights and\or indicators.
There was a legal case in the USA where a woman driver pulled out in front of an mv and the mv hit her vehicle. Her defence was that all military vehicles were designed not to be seen and she was not convicted. So, could having no stop lights or indicators be a defence in Britain?
The following picture shows a Champ as it left the factory. Note, there is no reflector.
Many Champs went to Germany, to BAOR (British Army of the Rhine), if they did they were fitted with stop lights and indicators - I am not sure if reflectors were fitted at this time or earlier.|
When restoring a Champ there is a choice to restore the vehicle to: ex-factory or to BAOR spec. or as I have done on my Champ (see below).
Green is the original turret; red is the original turret rear light; yellow is the reflector mounting bracket; blue is the made-up bracket to support a turret light as a brake light and Lucas period light as an indicator light. I used longer bolts to mount my bracket on the reflector bracket so no holes were needed to be drilled. So doing it this way means buying two original type turret lights, NOS ones are not cheap! The original reflectors had metal bases.
The next photo is of the front bracket to hold the Lucas indicator light on a made-up bracket using the bolt holes of the front grill. |
So, if for any reason, I wanted to return the lighting etc. to ex-factory the brackets could easily be removed.
|Below is the standard conversion (or BAOR as I call it) with a combined tail and stop light and indicator light. (photo from In National Service by Pat Ware).|
The indicator switch for the driver. The switch is often mounted in the centre of the dashboard above the instrument panel - I think this is part of the BAOR kit. |
If no switch has been fitted before then, as I don't like drilling holes, I found an mv control box and modified it.
In the pics. below the control box is mounted to the right of the driver and I find this easier to use than a centre-mounted switch. |
The main centre switch of the control box moves left and right for indicators with corresponding green lights. On the right of the box is a chrome switch for the hazard lights and all three green lights come on - the wire to the hazard lights has to be live all the time to allow the hazard lights to work with the ignition 'off'. The rotating switch on the left of the box was to be used for a rotating orange beacon (for slow running on the road) but I never fitted one.
|In the pic. below is a control box mounted under the glove box but in an accident it would be too low, also mine is mounted the other way up.|
The stop light switch on the braking system. There are two choices:
one, under the brake pedal. I don't like this arrangement because the switch is exposed to road dirt (see next photo on one Champ) and mud and, also, live wires could be damaged by going over rough ground?
Two; fit a brake fluid activated switch over the back axle and there is a electrical built-in live feed to the rear light cluster. The new unit (see photo) replaces the existing brake line splitter. A live feed to one contact and the other pin to the stop lights. It is not difficult to fit the switch. See next but one photo for type of switch. They are called, 'hydraulic brake switch, 4 way, 3\8" UNF'. Automec may be able to supply, email@example.com
Tony kindly e-mailed with his solution,|
"As Champs were built before September 1965 they are not required to have amber lenses for indicators"
Editor, in the pictures of Tony's Champ below, 11 BF 43, 11443, spot the front indicator?
|Tony, "I fitted stop\tail bulbs in the sidelight, there is just enought room to fit twin-filament bulb holder, see below"|
Tony, "I was lucky enough to have a pair of the original trumpet style rear lights and these were modified to take twin filament bulb holders."
Editor, I got slightly confused here. So, Tony has one light that seems to perform three functions: side light; stop light and indicator, how?|
Tony says, "The ordinary rear light filament is unaffected, this operates as normal, it is only the brake filament that flashes when you operate the indicator switch. It switches from the brake light circuit to the indicator circuit when you operate the switch."