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Old February 19th, 2002, 01:04   #6
Michael Moore
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Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Toronto / Zürich
Default Re: MFA Cluster Conversion Installation Information

I did, however, complete the installation of the new wiring harness needed to control the MFI display, and finished the wiring from the OAT sensor to the instrument cluster. Below are photos and some suggestions, to make it easier for those who do this in the future.

It’s not necessary to take the airbag off to just do the wiring. The upper and lower covers that go around the control stalks and ignition key can be removed using a Phillips screwdriver. Just twist the steering wheel around as needed to access the 4 screws. There is a 5th screw (Torx) on the bottom near the handle for steering wheel tilt adjustment.

I was a bit surprised to find that my Golf already had the 6 pin connector (connector T6e) in place. Pins T6e/5 and T6e/6 contain wires used to control the intermittent windshield wiper regulator (ref wiring diagram 52/20, tracks 253 & 254). Pins 1 through 4 were empty, and will be used for the MFI control wires.

I disconnected the connector, popped it open, and installed the 4 repair wires in slots 3 to 6 of the connector.

6 Pin Connector (T6e) with repair wires in place


The photo below shows connector T6e in place as I found it in the car, and connector T32a Green in place behind where the instrument cluster normally goes. The repair wires need to run between these two connectors. T6e uses medium size repair wire connectors, and T32a uses the very smallest size. By using half a length of each repair wire, I had enough overall length to complete the harness without needing additional wire in the middle.

View with cover off steering column and instrument cluster removed, showing connector T32a


The only really annoying part of the job was removing the existing, blank pins from connector T32a. These pins have a small barb on the left side (left side when viewed with the wires exiting from the top), and I used the tip of a pocket knife to press the barb to the right, while prying the pin upwards at the same time with a jeweler’s screwdriver. The photos below illustrate the process.

Releasing the barb on the OEM blank pin


The OEM blank pin halfway out (it slides straight up)


What the OEM pin looks like, showing the barb on the left side


Once the OEM blank pins were out, it was pretty easy to put the replacement pins from my wiring harness in the empty slots. The wiring diagram you need to follow is number 5/13 dated 12/98, it is on page 97-116 of the 1999 through 2002 Bentley repair manual. The pinouts go as follows:

T6e/1 to T32a/24. This is the MFI call up button bottom (display switches up).
T6e/2 to T32a/23. This is the MFI call up button top (display switches down).
T6e/3 runs to ground. This is shown on track 138 of wiring diagram 5/11.
T6e/4 to T32a/25. This is the MFI memory reset switch.

At the same time you have the instrument cluster out and T32a taken apart, you can run the wire from pin 1 of the OAT sensor connector to T32a/26. The wire from pin 2 of the OAT sensor runs to ground.

If you’re really keen, while you have the instrument cluster removed, you can take apart the other 32 pin connector, the blue one on the left hand side, and run a repair wire from pin T32/14 to the pin 9 of connector T17, which is the connector used right behind the light switch. That way, if you ever hook up a rear foglight, you’ll see the orange ‘rear fog’ icon displayed on your instrument cluster. The wiring diagrams for this icon can be found on diagram 17/9, track 1 and diagram 17/4 track 40. These are pages 97/173 and 97/175 of the Bentley manual.

The photo below shows connector T32a after the MFI control harness has been installed in it, but before the cover is put back on the connector. You can also see the unusual recessed bolt that holds the steering wheel in place. As mentioned earlier, you don’t need to take the airbag off if you plan to install the wire harness only. The airbag and steering wheel will need to come off later, when you remove and replace the left hand control stalk.

Wires in place in connector T32a


The photo below is just a close-up of the finished job, again, before the cover was put back on connector T32a. I used a marker pen to put dots on the end of the wires, indicating what pin location on T6e they came from. Hopefully I didn’t screw up and confuse the wires when I put them in the connector. The blue wire in the background goes to the OAT sensor on the front bumper.

Close-up of T32a with cover off connector


When you are putting the wires in place running along the channel from T6e along the existing wire bundle in the steering column, be sure that the wires don’t foul when the steering column is moved up and down, and also in and out. Be especially careful to be sure that the wires are not crushed against a large metal flange near the wire harness when the steering column is moved to the full ‘up’ position.

I disconnected the battery before I started this work, because I intended to remove the airbag. I was surprised that the radio did not ask me for a code when I reconnected the battery. Also, there were no programming problems with the instrument cluster (other than needing to reset the time), and no problems at all with the Immobilizer or anti theft systems, even though I completly removed the instrument cluster from the car.
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