[Chrysler300] Rear courtesy lights in 300C convertible
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[Chrysler300] Rear courtesy lights in 300C convertible

I have two related questions for the group:

FIRST:  While chasing other small gremlins in my 1957 300C convertible, 
we found that the small round courtesy lights in the rear side panels 
were not being actuated by the pin switches in the door jambs, but could 
only be turned on or off by a single manual switch in the left rear door 
panel.  The wiring diagram does not differentiate between coupe and 
convertible models, and it appears that the door jamb switches actuate 
only the "dome light", which of course does not exist in a convertible; 
instead, those switches actuate a small "map light" under the hood of 
the dash overhanging the instrument cluster.  A physical check of the 
wiring to the rear courtesy lights and also from the pin switches showed 
no trace that any wires from the door jamb switches were ever run back 
to turn on the rear courtesy lights!

That seems counterintuitive, so I am seeking information from other 
owners of 1957-58 300C-D convertibles whether this is the actual case:  
do the "courtesy lights" in your rear door panels light up when the 
doors are opened?  Or are they only actuated manually by that single 
on/off switch in the left panel?

Regardless, I am considering running a ground wire from each of the door 
jamb pin switches back to the rear courtesy lights, so the come on when 
a door is opened as would be expected in modern cars.  I would also 
consider installing a 3-way switch (ON/OFF/AUTO) in place of the current 
ON/OFF switch to avoid overusing those rear light bulbs (and discoloring 
the flimsy round lenses) if I have the doors open for any extended 
period.   I welcome any opinions or advice.

SECOND:  One of the small round translucent white courtesy light lenses  
fell apart in half a dozen brittle pieces during this repair process, 
and the other is significantly "burned" - discolored brown by heat from 
the bulb.  So I am looking for a pair of nice replacement lenses, but 
can't find them in my Gary Goers catalog.  Does anyone have a suggestion 
for where to find these?

Thanks for your help!

Ray Melton  Las Cruces, NM  1957 Chrysler 300C convertible 
white/Gauguin  S/N 3N572517

Posted by: Ray Melton <rfmelton@xxxxxxx>

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