After ordering a new switch from BJ’s Offroad (a useful and well-stocked supplier of FSJ parts and accessories in Washington), Carl and I went back to work on the fog lights in the carport this evening. Carl had come up with the electrical wiring diagram for the headlights to compare. Using his meter, we confirmed we had power to the switch at the harness (but the old switch didn’t work, hence the new one), and we knew the lights themselves had good wiring.

Still, even with the new switch in place, we had no fog lights. That left the relay that sat between them to test. Carl popped it off, reading he schematic printed on the side as if he were an archaeologist interpreting an ancient rune. After figuring out which of the five prong was which (and consulting the wiring diagram printout), he went back to work with the ohm meter, confirming the relay worked–in theory.

Those connector pins were suspiciously corroded, though, so I grabbed some sandpaper from my workshop and we scrubbed off 33 years worth of gunk and plugged everything back together–and lo, it worked! Fog lights!

Carl went back to his house, and I spent some time getting the dash put back together again (easier said than done). Terry, our neighbor from across the cul-de-sac, stopped by while he was out on a bike ride to admire the Wagoneer. He has a ’68 Camaro SS. Suddenly I felt like I belonged, in some weird way, to a group of people I’ve never really been part of. (Did I mention a couple weeks ago, someone stopped by the house, out of the blue, to look at the Wagoneer and ask if I’d ever consider selling it? The two guys were looking at an old Ford truck that another neighbor owns and couldn’t pass up the chance to look at my Jeep.)

I was so happy to have everything buttoned up and working that after the kids went to bed, I grabbed the keys and tooled around for 20 minutes or so. I made the excuse that I wanted to make sure the battery had recharged, what after all the testing back and forth turning the headlights on to check the fog lights, but in reality I needed to feel the motor hum, the window down to let in the cool late summer air. Terry told me about a couple of folks around town who do upholstery, and now I’m suddenly thinking about getting the front seats redone.

First, though, I think it’s about time to pile the kids in and go camping.