Electrical Table of Contents

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16v Spark plug wires
Disabling the upshift indicator
Ground upgrades (Weak or difficult starting)
Finding battery drain
Replacing a 16v Fuba

Hey gang,
        At the advice of many, I decided to go in a dark alley (my driveway) and
check my plug wires this evening in an effort to combat that nasty
sputtering problem.  Ummm... I think it's safe to say I need new wires! :)
        When I opened the hood I saw nothing at first... but it was drizzling, and
within about 10 seconds I saw a little blue spark.  Then, I took my hose
and sprinkled the wires slightly.  Holy fireworks, Batman!!  Sparks *all*
over the place... one of the wires had a 6" section which looked like it
probably had 50 sparks in it each time the plug fired.  The wire coming out
of the ignition coil was lit up permanently.  
        Whoopsie... I guess this means I need new wires, huh?  

        Okay, I need to place my order right away... and my first thought is to
call Mark or the Potterman... *but* if anyone has any good advice that'll
help me save some money but not lose any quality, I'll take them up on it-
but you gotta act fast because I'm gonna call tomorrow (Saturday) by
lunchtime...  (Gee, I hope Mark's there on Saturdays... Hmmm)
        Any advice, comments, suggestions, questions?

Obviously, new plug wires are required.  Stock or aftermarket, doesn't really matter.
Aftermarket uses colored wire if you want them, all use stock ends as that's the only
source of the connectors.  Nology type systems are basically a ruse.  Magnacor might be
worthwhile, but expensive for a tiny improvement.  If you really want to improve your
ignition system (difficult as it's pretty optimized in the 16v) about the only thing
that might improve combustion is a multispark discharge system with high output coil.


  Disabling the upshift indicator

So I bought another Scirocco...

I know its pretty simple to kill the light, a hammer comes
to mind... 

Is there anything I should be aware of when I disconnect
this puppy?  Does clipping one of the leads for the LED
do bad things to something else?  I'm guessing that it
doesn't.  But I'd just like to make sure before I ripe the dash


Lee Crawford
84' Rocco 8v - Silver - A very happy little car.
85' Rocco 8v - Red w/Annoying Upshift Light


On Mon, Jul 06, 1998 at 10:42:44PM -0600, Lee Crawford wrote:

> So I bought another Scirocco...
> I know its pretty simple to kill the light, a hammer comes
> to mind... 
> Is there anything I should be aware of when I disconnect
> this puppy?  Does clipping one of the leads for the LED
> do bad things to something else?  I'm guessing that it
> doesn't.  But I'd just like to make sure before I ripe the dash
> apart.

Damn, it's a lot easier than that. Just go to your fuse/relay panel and
pull the relay in position 4. (It has a big 5 printed on it, now that
makes a lot of sense) It's a lot easier, and more reversible.


   Ground upgrades (Weak or difficult starting)

Weak or difficult starting. Battery constantly needing recharging, or
needing replacement prematurely.

Possible Culprits:

Poor grounding from engine, body, and alternator, to battery negative
terminal. Main power wire from battery positive terminal to the starter
too small or in bad condition.


  The battery negative terminal goes to a ground strap that is attached to
the body(just below the airbox), and also to the engine/transmission. The
first step in fixing your problem is to make sure that all contact points
here are clean, and that the ground strap is in good shape. If the ground
strap is not in good shape, replace it. Remove the bolts that connect the
ground strap to the body, and also to the transmission. Use a wire brush,
or sandpaper to clean the ground strap terminals, and also to clean the
area on the body, and transmission so that there is no rust or paint at the
contact points. Clean the battery negative post and ground strap terminal.
Make sure the ground strap is securely fastened back down.

   Now that you have gone through and made sure the existing wiring is up
to spec, you can add a few more  wires to that will make the charging system
perform better than it did when it was new. First, you should add a wire
that goes directly from the negative battery terminal to the alternator
housing. There are several posts on the back edge of the housing. This wire
doesn't need to be massive, a 12-14 gauge wire should be more than adequate.
You can use a small ring terminal on the end that attaches to the alternator
housing, and a similar one to attach it to the negative battery terminal.
This is as much as I have done to my cars ground wiring, and it seems to be
enough to cure all of my previous grounding problems. Some people have gone
so far as to completely replace the ground strap with extra large wiring,
and adding additional grounding straps from the battery to the body, engine,
and elsewhere. But simply adding the one ground wire to the alternator
housing, and cleaning the contacts for the ground strap, have been enough
to fix the problems of the 3 sciroccos that I have done this on. I would
recommend doing this on any scirocco, as I have yet to see one without these
fixes that didn't at least get improved battery life from doing these
modifications. The later model cars, particularly 16Vs, seem to need this
done more so than the others.

    If you still don't seem to have solved all of your starting problems, you
may want to clean the contacts on the positive battery cable that goes to
the starter. I replaced this wire with a red 4 gauge wire. Everything you
need to do this can be found at your local stereo shop. I used a custom
battery terminal that had a ring terminal for the 4 gauge wire, as well as
contacts for some additional power wires. I used these extra contacts 
when I wired in relays for my headlights. Make sure you specify the battery 
terminal is  for the positive battery post, as the two posts have slightly 
different diameters. Always crimp then solder the connectors, and use 
heatshrink tubing where appropriate.

Brad Sheridan

			Finding Battery Drains
To check for power drain on your electrical system using a multimeter, you 
must use the AMP setting on the meter.  With all systems off in the car, 
disconnect the positive or negative cable from the battery (negative is 
preferred for safety sake).  With the meter, you want to measure across the 
battery terminal and the cable you just took off.  If you get a negative 
reading, just swap the leads around from the meter.  If you get any reading 
you have some sort of drain.  BTW, you will always have some sort of drain 
due to radio memory, clock or engine ignition brains.  Now to find out which 
circuit in your car has the particular draining device, reconnect the battery 
cable, go to the fuse panel and remove a fuse one at a time.  Measure across 
the contacts in the fuse panel of each fuse (if you get a negative reading, 
swap the leads).   If you get any reading, that's the circuit that is 
draining.  Do this for each fuse to find if you have any other power 
consuming devices.  BTW, you may erase radio setting while doing this 
Good Luck.


You can also find odd electrical shorts and drains with a simple test light.
Unhook the neg terminal from the battery, put the leads from the test light
between the battery and negative cable.  If the bulb lights, there's a
significant power drain going on in the car, enough to light the bulb. 
Remove fuses or unhook devices (such as the alternator) until the the light no 
longer comes on.  Remove the obvious sources first such as the clock and radio
fuses.  When the light doesn't come on anymore, you've found the circuit causing
the power flow.

		Replacing a 16v style FUBA antenna

    I did this on my '86 last year.  It will either be relatively easy or a bit
of a pain in the butt.  If you still have the stock antenna (as I did), it is 
one piece.  That means you have to pull the stereo from the dash, disconnect 
the antenna and power lead, unthread it from under the carpet in the center 
hump (goes right past the parking brake lever), up under your rear seat, into 
the passenger rear fender, into the passenger C-pillar, to the roof.  To access 
the Fuba in the roof, pull the rubber hatch seal away from the top of the hatch
area and about 1/2 way down both sides.

    *Carefully* pull the headliner away from the metal (it's glued down).  Be
very careful around the seams.  After you've pulled it away, you'll be able
to reach the clips that hold the back of the headliner in place.  There's a
wire in the headliner that clips into the clips on the roof.  You need to
push the wire towards the front of the car to disengage.  It's really not
that tough and you'll see what I mean, but I can't explain it well.  Once
the clips are undone, the base of the Fuba is accessible.  Undo the bolt at
the base and pull it and the 12' antenna wire out of the car.  Clean the
mounting point on the roof and put the new Fuba in.  Run the new antenna
wire back along the path that you took the old one out.  Attach it to the
stereo and put the center console, rear seat, passenger side hatch,
headliner, and hatch seal back in place.

    You can try running the new wire by attaching to the old one as you pull it
through.  That didn't work for me, because the two antenna wires together
were too fat to fit through some parts of the center hump.  I think I used a
lower gauge wire as a guide (attach it to the old antenna wire, pull it
through as you remove the old, attach the new antenna wire, pull it back
through.  The hardest part by far is going between the seats.

   Now if you're lucky, you don't have the stock antenna.  If it's already been
replaced once before, it may be a three piecer like you've got in your hands.  
I assume you're replacing the Fuba because the amp died on you.  If so, drop the 
headliner, pull the old mast out, clean the mounting point, put the new mast in, 
replace the headliner.

If you run into questions, feel free to ask.

- Brad Sterling (bgsterling@earthlink.net)

'86.5 Volkswagen Scirocco 16v

	----Another Opinion----
R&R ing 16V antenna lead:  

	Yes you can totally remove the old wire, but often there is nothing 
wrong with the cable.  I terminated my old one with a FUBA supplied 
splice to use a newer replacement base.  Then you don't fool with the 
reamainder of the cable run.  I'd leave the old roof run in place.