bschwarz77
I just put in a new turn signal switch / dimmer in my '69 beetle.  I must have loosened a wire on the ignition because it won't crank over unless I jiggle some of the wires.

This aside, now when I turn the ignition on, the tail lights come on.  I don't have the lights on... is that normal?  I really cannot remember, is that how it's supposed to work?  None of my other cars turn on the tail lights with the ignition... but then they aren't Volkswagens either ;-)

BTW, changing out that turn signal, the new one had eight wires and the old one had only five.  I can't really figure out what those other three are for... even if they're just for a newer model.  Any ideas?  Think that has anything to do with the tail lights or ignition?  (i doubt it)

Thanks!
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MY72BUG
No.  That is not normal.  Without the headlight switch on you should not have any lights on at the back.  Are you sure that these are not the brake lights?  Pull the connections off of the brake light switch on the master cylinder and see if these lights go out.  You could have a switch jammed on here.  You may also have done something to remove the function of the ignition switch when you put in the new turn signal switch.  Here is another place to look.  When you connected the gang plug under the steering column did you get it right?  On the older ones that connection is not keyed.  If you are off by a  bit it will still go together but with weird results.  I was able to dim my headlights by attempting to blow the horn!  Look there first.   Dan ( MY72BUG) in Goderich
I'd rather have a partial bottle in front of me than a partial frontal lobotomy.
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bschwarz77
Yup, it was definitely the brake lights stuck on.  There's two sets of two wires on what look like redundant switches on the brake master cylinder.  I pulled one set, then the other.  First no change, second... bingo!  Everything seems to be working just fine. 

So I taped up those wires and going to get a new master cylinder.  I'd get just the replacement switch but I've got some brake fluid leaking right around the boot on the inside of the car where the cylinder comes through.  (Messy!) Time to swap it out anyway, I gotta keep feeding brake fluid and the brakes are skwishy.  Luckily a new one is maybe 35 or 40 bucks.  With a little help, I'm hoping to replace that in an hour or so.

Good call Dan, thanks!
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MY72BUG
And a heads-up move on your part to go with a new master cylinder.  Fluid leaking out and squishy brakes are the stuff you do not want to mess with.  As I told my son when we were working on his car:  " Having a car that really goes is great; having a car that really stops is priceless!"  Good luck with the project.  Dan (MY72BUG) in Goderich
I'd rather have a partial bottle in front of me than a partial frontal lobotomy.
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MY72BUG
And, while I'm at it.  When you remove the bolts which hold the master cylinder in place, watch that you don't drop anything down into the deadly black void.  Picture sheet metal, inch and a half wide gap and sheet metal.  That gap can really bite you if you drop anything into there - it is gone.  Now, for a really secure mounting of the master cylinder make a couple of sleeves out of a suitable diameter pipe cut to the width of the dreaded gap.  Slide the bolts through the sleeves so that they reinforce the mounting of the master cylinder.  Without the sleeves when you tighten the bolts you squeeze the sheet metal layers together - not too sound.  With the sleeves everything tightens up very firmly and the master cylinder is rock solid.   This is an old trick but a good one.  Dan (MY72BUG) in Goderich
I'd rather have a partial bottle in front of me than a partial frontal lobotomy.
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