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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've been working on some 3D modeling recently and researching companies that produce parts from your models. While eating dinner, it popped into my mind that the wire loom is a pretty simple part, but I believe I remember reading that the Opel wire loom is no longer in production and a hard to find part. Sometimes it's the small details that you really want for a car and cannot find anymore. I'm pretty sure I can create a 3D model of this part within 90% accuracy and it wouldn't cost too much to make, all things considered. There is information I would need, or someone would need to loan me one of these wire looms so I can get the dimensions myself. Attached is the first set of dimensions I need to start this but there will be followup questions. Thank you in advance.

In millimeters please...(if you have a digital caliper, that would give the best measurements)

A - overall length
B - overall width
C - Wires In Length
D - First Slant Length
E - First Support Length
F - Second Support Length
G - Third Support Length
H - Top Length
I - Forward Slant Length
J - Wire Out Slant Length
K - Box Inside Width (exterior detail, use the average shape)
L - Box Inside Length (exterior detail, use the average shape)
M - Rib Thickness (exterior detail)


I could also use a bunch of various pictures detailing the external design features / details and internal design features / details. How is the wire loom secured to the engine? How does the wire loom remain closed? What is the diameter of the wire holes? Or dimensions of internal wire boxes? What material is the wire loom made out of, at least approximately?

The more detail I can get about this part, the better I'll be able to replicate it. Once I've finished the design of a replacement wire loom, it should be available to everyone as long as it doesn't cost too much.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I could loan you my extra one. Can you just scan it to get the dimensions you need?
Sadly I don't have a laser 3 dimensional scanner, otherwise that would be awesome. I'm very good with getting dimensions from an object however, as I am OCD when it comes to things like that. If you're willing to loan it to me, I'll send you my shipping address.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Thanks Gordo, I've sent you a PM. Chances are, I'll be making some small changes to the design of the part. I don't know if the Opel logo in on it for example, but I'd most likely add that to the part. If there is a part number on it, I'll most likely put that too. And heck, we could even look at adding a website or someone's name on it. The company I plan on using is web based and can literally do one off production runs with custom details. So we could in theory have some of these with specific names of owners on them. Depending on material choice, we might even have color options.
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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14,606 Posts
Okay, I'll get it off to ya.

One thing that I would like to see changed is the attachment point at the front driver's side valve cover bolt. The loom is currently configured for the front bracket to only attach to the 2.4 type of domed steel washer. Those who have put these on cars with 1.9 covers have to shim that attachment point with a few washers or a nut. I think it's totally unnecessary and causes the loom to angle upwards, which I don't like. If I were you, I would just make the plastic part of the loom and let people make their own attachment bracket(s). I don't see a great need to even have the two steel attachment brackets at all.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Gordo, I appreciate the ideas. Maybe I'll look into a way of designing a steel bracket into the part. I can create special steel brackets with this company, 3D printed and everything. So you could tell me the thickness the bracket needs to be at the valve cover and I can build that into the steel bracket. I'd just need to know a few measurements of the valve cover and where the wire loom should go to make that happen. We can worry about these details once I have the bulk of the wire loom design done. The steel parts will increase the cost a little but you wouldn't have to try and rig up some kind of bracket. It would all bolt together perfectly.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Update on the design progress so far. New wire loom design will have individual paths for the spark plug wires. This should make the wire loom stiffer and prevent the possibility of cross firing.
 

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Registered
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2,134 Posts
Update on the design progress so far. New wire loom design will have individual paths for the spark plug wires. This should make the wire loom stiffer and prevent the possibility of cross firing.
That looks great but I'm not so sure the square-ish corners will be good for the plug wires. Maybe a gentler curve. Not sure what the minimum bend radius is.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
There is a fillet for internal bend, it's a 7 mm radius fillet. This was just the initial design to get the main dimensions down and see how I want to move forward, and to learn FreeCAD. I've used other CAD programs before but I'm new to this program. It's pretty much a watered down version of SolidWorks. I don't currently have SolidWorks due to how expensive the program is.
 

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Opeler
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1,127 Posts
I would caution against adding Opel logo or part numbers. You could find yourself in a legal bind. Copyright and Patents come to mind.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for mentioning that, maybe I'll try to contact Opel about it. Does anyone currently know anyone at Opel who is friendly with the GT community?
 

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Opeler
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1,127 Posts
Thanks for mentioning that, maybe I'll try to contact Opel about it. Does anyone currently know anyone at Opel who is friendly with the GT community?
Hit up Gary, if anyone would know the correct people to contact, I would think he might.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Thanks for the help, I sent Gary a message about it.

On the design side of this, I've been researching material choices and what would work. Sadly, I don't think 3D printing for the part will work. No one has a 3D printer with a large enough tray for high strength plastics. I could produce the part in steel, but it would weigh too much and the steel would not help with high voltage electricity due to being a conductor, a heat sink and a ferromagnetic material. So, 3D printing the part directly is out. It's still a possible option for molds. Even if there was a company that could print a part 373 mm long out of plastic, I haven't seen any 3D printing plastics / rubbers that have a high enough resistance to heat.

So looking at the mold option, I have found some easily cast-able urethane materials. If we really wanted colored wire looms, that is still an option. The material I'm really liking right now is Smooth Cast Onyx Fast...

https://www.smooth-on.com/products/smooth-cast-onyx-fast/

It has a tensile strength of 5,840 psi, flexural strength of 8,280 psi and compressive strength of 8,760 psi with a heat deflection temp of 250 °F. This is a serious urethane resin, most likely way stronger than material used for the originals (I have Gordo's part in hand and it doesn't look incredibly strong). The benefit of using this material option is that I can design the brackets to be part of the wire loom! So it will come out of the mold and be 90% done, in a jet black finish.

If we really wanted color, I can still accomplish that by using alumidust in the molds and then pouring in the resin. I'd do a test part first to see if this method will work with the specific resin. I expect most would just want it black though.
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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14,606 Posts
I wouldn't worry for one second about copyright. I've dabbled with selling stuff that "may" have had copyright issues before. The bottom line is that to start a copyright infringement case cost about $8000, unless there's a whole lot of money to be claimed by the plaintiff, lawsuits seldom get started. A low volume item like this is hardly something that anyone would get rich off of. At the worst you might get a phone call or a letter telling you to cease and desist.

You want the loom to be big enough to hold the largest aftermarket spark plug wires. I'm using MSD wires and I think they are 9mm. The loom I sent you uses little molded in c-clips to hold the wires and there's plenty of room for large wires as a result, with just a little pinching from the c-clips.
 

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Pedal Smasher
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2,159 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Right now, the channel is 7 mm wide. I was wondering about spark plug wire thickness, as modern wires are between 8 mm and 10 mm. Only the older types of wires are still 7 mm. I had thought about just copying the exact part and stick with the internal c clip idea. By going for a channel design, the overall part will be a lot stronger and stiffer and I'm not terribly worried about the added weight. The channels will also keep the wires from ever touching, which does have some potential need due to cross firing but with modern wires, that isn't a huge issue. My OCD side is part of the factor as well though. I figure if I'm going to create something very similar, why not try to improve it? The top of the wire loom will be completely detachable, regardless of what I decide to do about wires. It will still use the built in clip design to secure it shut, the channels would also serve to keep it closed too as that design would have a top groove that covers the wires.

I might come up with two designs and see what people want to see produced before creating the molds.
 

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Opeler
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1,127 Posts
All the wire looms on my old mopars were steel with little c shaped plastic inserts and longer versions with two, three and four c shaped slots, if you don't know what I mean I am sure I could get you some pics. Never had a problem with cross firing.
 

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Opel Key Master
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5,091 Posts
I would focus on making the 7mm, you will always have someone that wants something different. Those guys probably won't buy them anyway...lol. Make it for the majority and you will be fine. I would have to look, but I didn't think in the original part that the wires touched inside either.
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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14,606 Posts
Joe, why don't you take a pics of the wire loom from various angles, so that guys who have never seen one of them know what we're talking about.

I'm using the 9mm wires in mine and they fit just fine.

Since you probably can't make an exact copy due to 3D printer size problems and material problems and your possible decision to make it with an entirely snap on top, rather than the folding top the originals have, your new design will automatically be very different from the original, therefore, negating worries about copyright infringement. I seriously doubt that the hundreds of companies in China who make things with Opel words or blitzes on them have gotten permission from Opel to make stuff. Knowing how Germans are, Opel probably wouldn't let a German company make stuff that said Opel or had blitzes on it. They have an incredibly stifling-for-business bunch of laws over there.

So basically you are left with making a custom original. This means that the sky is the limit as far as your design choices. It could be an entirely different shape. Just a tapering tube with holes down the sides for the wires to stick out from, for instance. There's nothing particularly amazing about the loom I sent you, other than that it has brackets specifically placed so that it can be bolted to our engines. Yeah, it's a cool shape, but there's lots of cool shaped wire looms on the market that could be adapted for use on our cars. The question is: Will what you are planning on making look better than what we can already buy off of ebay or function/attach as good as the loom I sent you or ones that we can already buy?

So, since all sorts of manufacturing hurdles have cropped up during your current quest to find something on our cars that you could 3D print, at this juncture: the wire loom, why not consider making something uniquely cool that's an original design created by YOU. Howsabout a loom shaped like a lightning bolt? Y'know those clamp or clip-on spark plug wire holders? Why not make ones like those with a blitz or O-P-E-L words on them?

Here's another idea: The domed inserts for GT interior door latch handles seem to be unavailable. Maybe I'm wrong, I think I heard about Suselbeek making chromed steel ones.

Personally, I'm pessimistic as to you being able to find an oem part on our cars that's hard to find and that's small enough for you to make.

There are items that you could make BETTER, however. The side air vents in a GT dash can't be closed. On a cold day this can be seriously annoying. Making vents for the dash that could be shut would be a great thing. The Holy Grail would be to remake the horribly designed GT defroster vents that are 16" long, yet the air only comes out the middle 3"-4" because they didn't design the dispersal fins inside long enough to actually divide and disperse the air evenly. I can think of half a dozen ways to redesign those clunkers to work better. The oem ones are such a complex mold that I doubt we will ever see new replacements.

Just my thoughts and unwanted opinions.......

:veryhappy
 
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