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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i have an 80 rabbit and it has some wiring issue's and it's looking like it'll be better to just swap in a new (well used) harness.
you move the wires under the dash and things spark, the running lights come on when the battery is connected and all the switches are off. there's alot of hokey wiring going on with the car.
the rabbit has a 2.0 aba block with an FF tranny and a hydrolic head (a-2 golf), a supersprint header, and who knows what else.
i'm just trying to get the car running good so i can sell it. but i don't want to sell a pos with the wiring all jacked up.
it has a cabby quad light grill on it as well. what would be an easy harness swap into it? another old school rabbit? a rabbit gti? a later cabriolet?
give me some opinions if you got them (about my questions that is. hehe)
 

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Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (vdubn)

Harness swaps aren't really hard, but time consuming and can be rather intimidating. SHould be pretty easy if you are going from similar cars. Since the 80 Rabbits were American built, but still seemed sorta German, a -84 Cabby or Scirocco harness would make the most sense I think. Get the whole engine, interior, and rear harness and fuse block, and it should just about put itself in.
 

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Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (bluerrrabbit)

hey mike a cabby or a scirocco uses totally different wiring from a u.s built rabbit. alot of the plugs are different so they don't match up with the switches. the fuse box is different too. it uses a fuse box similar to my a2 fuse box that i used in my rabbit. my 84 jetta has totally different wiring from what my rabbit did when it was still an 8v.doug

so the answer to swapping wiring is try to use a rabbit gti wiring harness or a regular rabbit wiring harness. all the wring from my car is from a 89 jetta gli 16v cuz i have a 16v conversion that is a2 style instead of 16v rocco style. i hope this helps you out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (bluerrrabbit)

just to refreshen this, i've been messing with the harness the last few days but it isn't seeming to go very well.
last last weekend, i pulled a wiring harness from a car in the junkyard, that car was a 79 4door rabbit. it had the same style fuse block so i figured it's the same. turns out it's a bit different, and i'm having a hard time trying to figure out what is supposed to hook up to what onto my 80.
from the 79, i took the whole fuse block, dash wiring, and both harnesses that go through the firewall, and cut the rear one like halfway.
back at home, on the 80, the rear one i left because its the same, and the inner firewall one i left as well, because if i remember correctly, the one on the 79 is different then the one on the 80. the distributor connection was different, as was the electric fan connection piece (although on the light wiring harness, i just cut off the boot to plug them into the fan)
anyhow, i have some misc wires, the car doesn't turn over, the hazards appear to work, as does the defrost, and for the lights, only the drivers side works and only when the high beams are switched on.
i'm also not sure about the wiring connecting to the computer, the plug is not the same on both harnesses, so i dunno.
should i continue looking for another (80 year) wiring harness or can i work with what i got? is a 79 and an 80 really that different from each other????????
Brian.
 

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Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (vdubn)

you probably have done this but when you find another donor, label the plugs and wires as you unplug and take out the harness. This will help when you go to reinstall.
What dash are you planing on using? if you are swapping to say a Cabriolet dash you could use a Scirocco or Cabby harness and the switches will plug in. Use the newer fuse block and you'll be in good shape.
It is time consuming but well worth it with the sounds of your problems.
 

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Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (83caddy16v)

Wow. '70 and '80 Rabits are kind of like the missing link when it comes to Rabbits. I don't really know enough about those years to be much more help here.
If you can find another '80 harness and have the time to put into it, I gues that should maybe go a little better. Altho, if you're going this far, like Chris said, maybe it would be worth it to update you system with something newer.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Re: is a harness swap pretty simple? (bluerrrabbit)

well i went to the yard again yesterday and pulled another harness. this time out of a 80 cabriolet. looks more like the one in my 80 rabbit, so i took it out, i cut only 2 or 3 wires and labled them good this time.
so sometime this week i'll get around to trying to install it. wish me luck. lol.
it has extra wiring stuff (for the center console) which i don't need, but hopefully i got everything else that's needed.
Brian.
 
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