Sparrow / NmG
Sparrow >> Service >> Mechanical >> Mirrors
On this page... (hide)
The original, factory installed mirrors were made by Vitaloni and were called Concept mirrors. Some owners have reported that the factory mirrors have had a few problems with the glass falling out.
Many Sparrow owners are switching to the universal CIPI lighted mirrors that come equipped on the NMG from MM. These mirrors are also available from JCWhitney.com (part # RB497405) or The California Car Cover Co (part #CIP91000-1) at www.calcarcover.com. These lighted mirrors can be wired to use as running lights or as a blinker signal. Universal mounting makes them easy to install. Each mirror comes with blue, green, clear and amber bulbs. They are fully adjustable and fit both left and right sides of the Sparrow.
I added these mirrors to my Sparrow, but went one step further, by changing the internal mirror lights to LEDS, and having a daytime running light function, as well as forward and backward facing blinkers in different colors. I used three LEDS in total for each mirror. (One regular Amber LED for the daytime running light, one bright amber LED for forward and one bright red LED for rearward facing for the blinker function). I tied the ground leads together so I only had one ground to deal with. The LEDS I bought were called Snakelights made by JamStrait. You can get them at http://jamstrait.com/. I had to fabricate small aluminum brackets to mount the LEDS.
The new CIPI mirrors mount just like the old ones, but you must drill a hole for the lights wires and run them into your Sparrow. I wired mine as follows:
Safety first...push the BRB for now. Then, for the left side mirror (not the door side), I took the upholstered side panel off and then the small carpeted panel just above/to the left of the BRB. Then I took off the fiberglass window surround so I could completely see what I was doing. I drilled the hole from the outside for the left mirror wires and ran the wires down, pass the brake light switch (behind where the small carpeted panel from the BRB) and under the dash. Then I ran them across the dash to the other side of the steering column cover. From there they joined up with the door side wires. I used wire ties and secured them along the way.
For the right (door) side wiring, I took the inner door panel off, as well as the door latch pull. Then I removed the window surround. I drilled a hole for the wires at a slight angle forward, and ran the wires down through the inside of the door, out the bottom door hinge (similar to how Corbin ran the wires through the upper hinge). Those wires were then mounted up under the dash to meet the left side mirror wires. Once again, I used wire ties to secure them.
Next, I took the front headlight area fiberglass cover off, unscrewed the silver "washer looking" wire hold-down and pulled the wires out gently. You will be able to see the front lights' connector plug at that point. Next bring your inside run mirror wires up and through the same hole. If you make the connections to the plug area using wire taps and secure with small wire ties, you can later push all your wires back in behind the "washer" and re-secure the "washer" hold-down. Then add some more silicone for water proofing. This will put all your connections inside under the dash, safe from water etc.
I didn't write down the wire colors I tapped into, as I didn't figure I would need to do it again.(Your Sparrow's colored wires may be different anyway). However, I can tell you what I did for mine. First, pull up the BRB to regain 12v power. If you are running the mirror lights as RUNNING LIGHTS, then, while the front fiberglass cover is off, remove and unplug the headlight. I have an old 12 volt male plug (cigarette adapter) from an old 12volt accessory (don't remember what it came off of). I used that for my testing ground. If you plug it into the cigarette lighter that is always hot (DON"T SHORT THE POSITIVE SIDE), the two wires protruding gives you a pos and a neg. I used the neg wire from the cigarette lighter for the (neg)ground lead on my test light probe. Now, just turn the key to the on position. Use the probe + (pos) end and insert into the headlight connecter plug one wire at a time. If you have the headlight set to low beam, your tester will light only when you hit the low beam power. Mark down what wire that is. Next, hit the high beam switch so high beams would be on, and do the same probing until you find the high beam power. Mark it down. The third wire of the headlight connector will be your headlight ground. I used the headlight ground to ground my mirrors and the headlight low beam for both mirror marker lights (left and right) positive power.
If you are adding the BLINKER function of the new mirrors, test both of the factory front blinkers the same way. Turn each blinker on one at a time, use the ground of the cigarette lighter for the tester and probe the wires going to each blinker separately. When your test light lights up and blinks with the blinker, that's your positive blinker power wire. Mark the pos. down. (there was one common colored wire going to both blinkers that was the ground, I don't remember the color). You only need the positive wire from the blinkers, as the headlight ground you have already located can ground all of your new lights if you tie all the mirror grounds together (blinker and running light, if appropriate).
Use wire taps to tap into the appropriately noted wire that you found for each function. I used one for ground. One for a running light. One for left blinker. And one for right blinker. It may be the same for you but depends on how you decide to wire yours.
It sounds complicated, but it really isn't, however it is time consuming. It took me several hours to mount the mirrors and run all the wires. But, I am very careful working on this vehicle.
Make sure you don't short anything out. Although you will be working on the 12volt side, remember, the Sparrow has over 156 volts....... enough to kill. Safety first.
This is how I wired mine, and you may or may not want to do it this way. If it seems too complicated, take it to a professional. I do not know how MM wires their mirrors, but you may want to see what they tap into for power. Remember, whatever you do, check everything at least 2x.
Hopefully it will be the same for you, if you go this route, but remember that each Sparrow is somewhat different. Wire colors may be different too.
Oh, and as an added bonus, I painted my new mirrors to match my Sparrow before I did the wiring end of it.