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Discussion Starter #1
My 65 coupe had original backup lights that were in very bad shape (cracked housing on both). I can't remember if they worked or not - I am pretty sure they did - before I took them out a couple of years ago. I finally got around to putting in replacement ones - and although they look great - they don't work (no lights when I put the car in reverse). A few questions for anyone who has experience in this area:

- Is 1141 the correct bulb? I see some places that say 1142? I put fresh 1141 bulbs in.

- The wiring has one wire that plugs into harness at tail-lights on each side - and another that I assume is a ground. Do I just tighten the ground wire (has round hole fitting on end) around one of the bolts/screws that hold in the tail-light housing (I can't remember from when I took out the old lights). That's the way I have this setup and it doesn't seem to work. I have the ground attached to the lower tail-light bolt/screws closest to the back-up light on each side.

- Any other ideas? All other lights are working fine. I don't have a voltmeter, but if I get one, can anyone tell me what/how to check?

Thanks!
 

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Not sure of the bulb number but I believe it is a single filament, double post bulb. The ground is normally attached to the taillight housing area.

Just checked NPD cat,. 1142 is the correct one.
 

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Another tip on these old cars: get yourself one of those cheap 12V test lamps. Usually have an alligator clip for ground and a probe on the other end. Lots of uses and faster/easier than a multi-meter if all you want to know is "does this have power?"
 

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Lots of people put in the single post bulbs which will not work.

Also, the plastic base inside the socket should move up and down freely. If it sticks in the down position it may not make contact with the bulb.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
AzPete said:
Not sure of the bulb number but I believe it is a single filament, double post bulb. The ground is normally attached to the taillight housing area.

Just checked NPD cat,. 1142 is the correct one.
My 65 Mustang Shop Manual (the original one from Ford) says 1141 is correct. The NAPA Online site lists both the 1141 and 1142 for this vehicle. Does anyone know the difference between the 1141 and 1142 bulbs?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks Pete - I will check it all out when I get home. I hope it's something as simple as the bulbs. That would be nice....
 

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FYI: I had a fairly hard time running down 1142s locally. I eventually did and paid like $4.50 a bulb for them. NPD has them way cheaper than that... :)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
OK - I did need 1142 bulbs (double post) and I had the wrong bulbs (1141 - single post). I got the right bulbs (4.50 for 2 at NAPA) and put them in. But they still don't go on when I am in reverse. Any suggestions? Could I have blown the fuse by having the single post bulbs in there? How would check to see if I am getting power there when I should? I would guess since the lights aren't going on, I am not getting power....? Help!
 

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Get a 12V test light. Clip it to ground and probe the lead going to the reverse lamp (there's a wire inside the trunk that you can probe). Key on, engine off, tranny in reverse.

If that has power, troubleshoot the holder, etc. If that doesn't have power work your way back to the trans switch, etc following the wiring diagram.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Got the test light. No power at the backup lights (with key on, car in reverse, engine off). Where on the transmission is the switch to check? Or is there a chance there is something in the actual shifter area? This is a C4 automatic on a 65 coupe 289. Thanks!

On a positive note, I got a new turn signal flasher - and I now have working turn signals for the first time since I bought the car 4 years ago! Woo hoo! That was a cheap fix.
 

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Well, there's only one thing down in that area that has wires on it, so that's going to point you to the switch. (I'm not trying to be a jackass; I just have all manual trans Mustangs, so I don't actually know.)

But there's like 5 wires in the whole car, so it can't be hard to find... :)
 
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