Can I Buy GM parts online, instead of going to dealer?

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Thanks Mark, I'll check into this, please check out the thread also today with the subject "service engine light soon."
Hatt
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I looked at the other thread... try to solder the connections if possible. Butt-connectors can introduce too much resistance and cause problems. Keep working on it eventually you will figure out what the problem is and you can say to yourself that you saved a lot of money.
good luck, mark
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That is right! I forgot about that. Maybe this is why sometimes the ECM is picking this up and other times its not. What do you insulate connections with after soldering? And which kind of solder should I use?
Hatt
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I usually just use the generic solder from Radio Shack (64-004 which is standard 60/40 solder for electronics) and a 100 watt gun from wal mart (will be cheaper at wm). Slip over one of the wires a piece of shrink tubing (also from Radio Shack) then twist the wires together. Carefully heat the bare ends with the tip of the soldering gun while touching the wire with the solder. When the wires get hot enough they will melt the solder and the solder will wick into the wire. When both wires are coated with lead just let cool and the straighten out; then cover with the shrink tubing. Use a lighter to carefully heat the shrink tubing and you are done. If you don't want to use the shrink tubing then just carefully wrap them with electrical tape, which will work fine and will not be dangerous with having an open flame near gasoline.....
good luck, mark
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Hi Mark,
Thanks for the info. I managed to solder a couple of connections this afternoon. Didn't look at the wattage of the soldering iron, its one of those straight ones but it sure took a long time to get the wire heated enough to solder, but I got it done.
I'd be interested to know where I could get some quick understanding, [a laymans understanding], of the role electricity plays as far as resistence and these low voltages go, and why a butt connector creates too much resistence, how that may affect the voltage capacity and why.
Hatt
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Honestly, it doesn't make much of a difference at all. Why would the factory use crimp-on connectors(all the molex/weatherpak plugs)? People will probably respond with answers 180degrees of my opinion. Well, that's the way it goes.
Butt connectors and other solderless connectors has received a bad rap because more than half of the population out there that uses tham can't find their asses with both hands. As a consequence, they're unsealed(no shrink tube), poorly crimped on(improper tools), have a tendency to ruin wires(too much crimp!), fall off, rot away...Etc. Etc.
If the right person is doing the job, a solderless connector serves the same purpose and does almost as good of a job as soldering without the PITA that soldering in an engine compartment can be. There's nothing worse, IMO, than trying to position things just right in an engine compartment with the wind blowing and cooling off your wires, Etc. BTDT, didn't even get the shirt.
Sam

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Gary,
I have a Weller made in the 70's. It's like a direct feed very high amperage iron. Ridiculous amounts of heat(I have a nasty scar compliments of a careless stepfather and a few beers in us).
Anywho, after you set everything up, and get prepared and positioned, and solder it, you could be done already using a solderless connector and some shrink-tubing. Don't get me wrong-soldering is the best way to do it, but you can do the same quality job with crimp connectors-we're only talking about 12V systems here, and if you're careful and know what you're doing you won't run into trouble.
Sam

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P.S.- Just looked at that link and I gotta say I hate solder guns. My last weller was such a POS, never could heat worth a shit.
My weller solder station(cheapie, $30 from MCM) with variable heat is the best Iron I've ever owned. I also like my Weller portasol butane unit, though it can be a touch finnicky.
Sam

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This is key. Problem is, butt connectors are cheap, proper crimping tools are not. How many shade tree mechanics do you know that own a $120.00 crimping tool.

True, at first anyway, until oxidation begins to work on the wires and connector. Then resistance will rise and connection will become poor. This doesn't happen with a soldered joint. This is why the supplier who makes our harnesses not only crimps, but also solders butt connectors.

I'm not familiar with an airliner's wiring system, but I seriously doubt that there are any unsoldered butt connectors in any critical systems. If there were, that would explain a few things. :(
Dave

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$ 120 ????
you must buy from the snap-on guy
a good crimper (IDEAL brand) can be had at any electrical supply warehouse for under 30 bucks

not if properly crimped. the wire will corrode in two before the joint goes bad

I've seen more than enough 'soldered' joints that had far more resistance than a properly crimped connection, thank you

so I take it that you're not familiar with WHEN and WHY the crimp terminal was invented ?
WW-2, it was invented to have to keep from SOLDERING all the connections on fighters and bombers
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I guess it depends on your definition of *good*. We use PACKARD brand which are available from about $40 on up to as much as you can afford. $120.00 is the low end of the *good* crimpers that make four indentations with one stroke. (like a factory crimp). Even these are not good enough for our engineers who insist that we solder ALL butt joints and terminals that we replace.

The wire will corrode IN the joint. Dissimilar metals.

So have I, but a well soldered joint is still better than one that is not. IMO

Nope. But thanks for the information.

So you're saying that they build todays airliners' wiring systems using 1940s technology? During the war, I doubt that they expected those fighters and bombers to have a very long life span. Most of us hope our vehicles( and airliners ) will last longer than that.
Gary, I'm not trying to start a fight here, but I do firmly believe that soldered is better than solder-less (even though solder-less is quicker and easier). Dave

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had to replace the entire harness. I'll bet your customers would love that. :0 BTW, I have a Weller butane fired soldering iron that is the cat's meow for 12ga and smaller, where igniting gasoline wouldn't be an issue. Handy as hell.
Dave
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Dave, it's interesting that you mention dissimilar metals as a source of corrosion. I'll grant you that, but if you're soldering on a terminal to a piece of wire...you're still using dissimilar metals-you have the solder, the copper or steel wire, and then you have the terminal which are mostly aluminum or steel.
Like Gary and I both said, if they were such a bad thing, automakers, jet makers and makers in EVERY inductry wouldn't use them, and they all do.
If the right person is doing it, with the right tools, then there will never be a problem with going solderless, and solder in lots of automotive cases is serious overkill.
Sam Who still solders when need be

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Since there is very little current flowing in the TPS circuit, resistance could actually be up to several tens of ohms without being a problem

OK, that sounds reasonable, I've always used 0.50 as a standard, but whatever the booksays............

as I said above, the amount of current flowing in that circuit is very, very small.....the ECM is supplying 5V to the 'top' of the TPS, 'bottom' is ground potential, and the 'wiper' or variable terminal feeds a voltage back to the ECM
since most sensor inputs show a very high (25,000 ohms or greater) 'input impedance', any resistance up to 100 or so ohms anywhere in the TPS feed or return circuit would make very little difference
resistance in the GROUND side could conceivably raise the minimum past acceptable levels, however.

without trying to sound 'preachy', I'd suggest you find a good text on basic DC circuits and go thru it...........you need to bone up on the basics of voltage, current, and resistance, which will make understanding all your above questions pretty simple.
try the public library, 'The Radio Amateur's Handbook', the late 50's to early 70's editions had a really good chapter on 'Basic Electrical Circuits' (the armed forces used this part of the Handbook as basic training material for all radio operators and repairmen during WW-2)

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DJ, I agree with Gary. I think you need to do a quick read on "Ohm's law". It is the basis for the relationship between Voltage, Resistance and Amperage(and much more, really).
Sam
P.S.- Just crimp the sucker :-]

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I agree myself. Once a guy finds the graciousness to get started, as you guys have provided, and with the sure circumstance of time and money being against me, I realize I should have studied this when I had the chance, in high school. Our teacher then was only 21 years old, and he couldn't very well control an all boy class only 3-4 years younger than he, so he just went with the flow instead of flunking us all.
I have already started to re-do all connections again. Soldering. Its a pain in the ass and I hardly have time to sleep, much less eat, before I have to be back at work for the man in the morning, but I've already spent almost 3K with numerous mechanics on a truck I paid 28 hundred for and it still ain't right. When I replaced the injectors myself, it cured a lot of problem, and especially the black smoke that bothered me so much. I'm beginning to figure out that what is wrong with my truck is a combination of maybe dozens of problems. Possibley compounded one little thing over another. I can't stand a poorly running machine. I'm not going to buy a crimper just yet, I used the end of a higher end stripper, it looked like it was made for it, but I had to stand on the SOB to crimp that connector. While I realized perfectionism can sometimes be a curse, and have had to take an engineer or two, down, on my floor, to show them what would not work in actual practice, I'm seeing the significance of both sides of the arguement. I'll surely let you know what soldering these has done for me and my truck. Just one more thing. I can tell you if I open the tape around the splices where those pigtails for those injector leads that go to the injectors is, and find them loose, or improperly crimped, or not closed from corrosion or moisture, there is going to be one more sore "mechanic," in these parts, cause I'll kick his hillbilly ass all the way back to Missouri.
Hatt
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Thanks again for the info.
Hatt
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I use these guy's when I get frustrated with the local's.. It's a gm dealer site.. petty good..
http://www.gmpartsdirect.com /
JJ

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I got the TPS connector for my 87 K5 at Advanced Auto Parts in the HELP section. Good Luck JR
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Thanks, I looked here pretty hard online, no go.
Hatt

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