View Full Version : Wiper motor vac to electric

12-16-2011, 10:25 PM
I have an New Port Engineering electric windshield motor that I am getting ready to install in a 1958 Sunliner and wondered if anyone had experienced this procedure. The instructions included are not very good. Not sure if a Ford and a Thunderbird have the same operation. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Richard D. Hord
12-16-2011, 10:34 PM
Hey Ralph,
Check out,
Keep us posted if you need any more help:)
Richard D. Hord

P.S. Also you may want to look at, http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/wiper_motor.htm

12-16-2011, 10:38 PM
Hi Ralph, I have that electric motor in my '59 Tbird. I bet your '58 Sunliner windshield vacuum motor is the same as in my Tbird, or close to it. A number of us with Squarebirds have gone this route before and did not find the instructions lacking. You do have to make sure that you do not put the knob flat up against the panel because when it is working, that knob moves in and out. Check out the instructions in the Technical Resource Library (TRL). Although they apply to putting this unit in a Squarebird, they will probalby help you. You will find the link to our TRL right below my signature element. Let us know if this helps you and how you do on the conversion. I think but am not sure, that Dave ~ simplyconnected, our webmaster has done this conversion in his Full Sized Ford. If so, he might be able to give you some advice.

12-17-2011, 12:28 AM
Yes, I did the swap and it was one of the best changes I ever made. Now, my wipers are strong enough to plow through snow, they have three speeds, and an 'interval' mode. When I push the knob in, they give me a contact closure for electric squirts.

Click here for my pictures. (http://home.comcast.net/~simplyconnected/projects/ElectricWipers/default.htm)

The Full-Size Fords mount the wiper motor inside the engine compartment, and yes, they work just like Thunderbird wipers:
Hope this helps. - Dave

12-17-2011, 12:55 AM
Thanks to Dave, I have just added that link for the '59 (and other Full Sized Fords, probably) to the Technical Resource Library (TRL). It is in the Windshield Wiper & Washer section and you will see it as '59 Ford Galaxie (& Other Full Sized Ford) Windshield Wiper, etc... So now we will have that information in the TRL for others to easily find.

12-18-2011, 03:36 PM
Many thanks to all you guys for your info on this exchange. After viewing the photos I believe the '58 Ford windshield wiper system is a combination of the '58 Thunderbird and the '59 Ford. My motor is located under the dash like the Thunderbird but has arms like the '59 Ford but under the cowl not under the dash. As I make this exchange I will take photos of it and send them in for members in the future.

12-18-2011, 08:49 PM
Hi Ralph, yes, I would like to have those pix. We can certainly add them to the TRL for others down the road who might need to make good use of them.

12-19-2011, 01:03 AM
Take lots of pictures, Ralph.
The Squarebirds have pulleys and a 'cable' system. Full Size Fords use stamped steel arms. Your setup is more like the '59 Ford, but centered more and mounted inside the firewall (under the dash). If you do the conversion, you will discard the actuator cable (17470), but reuse the knob and bezel. Here's an illustration of yours:

12-19-2011, 08:57 PM
I completed the transition from vac to elec wipers today. On a '58 the wiper arms are located under the cowling and that's a good place to start by opening it up and disconnecting the arms from the old motor. The old motor is located on the firewall right behind the radio. I found you need to remove the radio and the ashtray assembly for room and access for your hands. No need to unbolt the old motor from the plate because both have to come out. Just unbolt the plate which takes a 7/16 socket. Don't forget to plug the vac hose. The new motor is tight but it does fit without removing anything else. I was told I would need the extender in order to use my original knob but found it was not needed. All wiring is simple and easy. The old plastic inserts on the arms have to be removed and the new ones inserted and the wiper arms have to be adjusted but that's it. Wipers started up without any problems. Remember to wet your windshield before trying them so you don't get scratches. Hope this info will come in handy for a member in the future.

12-20-2011, 12:30 AM
Good job! Glad you got your new electric wipers going. (You're going to love them.) You can leave the vacuum hose there (for looks). I removed mine to 'clean things up a bit'. I put a gromet in the hole and used it for electrical wires.
...I will take photos of it and send them in for members in the future. Send them to:
simplyconnected@aol.com and I will post them for you. - Dave