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Thread: Series heated windscreens

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Flagstaff, Arizona
    Posts
    1,102

    Default Series heated windscreens

    I just had a pair of the heated windscreens that you are currently selling installed in my 109 today. If I had seen what you had sent before the glass guy took the old ones out I would have told them to send them back and I would look elsewhere for a product that was closer to factory spec than the ones you sell. But the windscreens were out and since it is illegal in this state to drive without a windscreen, I really didn't have any option.

    The stock type windscreen has horizontal wires, a narrow band at each end where the wires meet. Centre wires that go straight down at the ends to meet the wires of the heated windscreen subharness and bullet connectors.

    The ones you carry have vertical wires, a wide silver common connection ribbon along the top and bottom, wires that go 90 degrees in the wrong direction to where they should go and bare wire ends.

    I ended up with very obvious silver strips at the top and bottom of the windscreens and the installer had to push up the windscreen to make room for the wires to double back under the windscreen bottom edge to reach the harness. And of course the installer did not have bullet connectors nor a proper crimp tool for the bullet connectors.

    So I drove home with bare wires sticking down at each bottom windscreen corner. I have a couple bullet connectors but no crimper to put a proper reliable crimp in them. So I'm not sure what I'm going to do.

    I don't know if it is the way my eyeballs are adjusted but I find vertical wires to be a lot more noticeable than horizontal wires. Hopefully my eyes will adjust so I stop focusing on them and not the road ahead.

    It has been a while but last time I looked Allmakes carried the correct heated windscreens with factory like horizontal wires, narrow common wire on each side that is hidden by the frame, wires that go the correct direction and preinstalled bullet connectors. If it hasn't changed you have options in what you buy. If I recall correctly I think Allmakes is one of your parts providers. The wires just are not supposed to be routed down to the inside middle behind the scuttle vent opening leaver.

    Since BP closed you are my go company for quality parts, but this time I think someone dropped the ball or had no idea what Series heated windscreens were supposed to look like.

    When I asked the glass shop to order windscreens from RN I also told them to also order the glazing strips (RNC687) to go with the windscreen. The salesman told the glass company that no such thing existed and just to apply an adhesive goop to fix the glass directly to the frame. So the glass company just ordered the glass. I have personally seen an improperly mounted windscreen crack on the trail. A series windscreen frame can flex on the trail when there is a hard top installed. Thankfully the glass company had a type of soft windscreen glazing strip that fit perfectly.

    I asked for the sales guy to email me directly so we could discus this by email and left my email address. It didn't happen and I do not have his email address (Eric?). So I decided that this route would reach him.

    I'm currently a really unhappy customer.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Hi Teriann,

    My name is Buck Kempner and I am the product development engineer for Rovers North. I am a big fan of your website, http://www.expeditionlandrover.info/. Thank you for compiling a ton of useful information on conversions, upgrades, etc. I have sent many customers to your site and I have used it myself for a Saginaw power steering conversion.

    Thank you for your feedback on our heated windscreens. You are correct, Allmakes does show an original Land Rover heated windscreen on their website. However, they order (or used to order) their original heated screen from Land Rover. If you call Allmakes to order a pair of heated windscreens you will find that they are no longer available. Allmakes has simply not removed the heated windscreens from their website.

    Just so you know, when the series heated windscreens became no longer available from Land Rover we began our search for replacement heated windscreens to provide our customers. We found multiple manufacturers but we chose to use a manufacturer in UK that makes the highest quality windscreens. The windscreens we supply do have vertical ribbons just like any new Land Rover or Range Rover equipped with a heated windscreen and the wires do come out at the bottom. We have sold many of our heated windscreen kits PLK852 which include both screens PLB962L and PLB962R, a wiring harness PLQ644, switch RNF167, relay 87421 and a 50’ roll of glazing GT106. We have never had any complaints from our kits nor have we had anyone complain about challenges with installation or cracking on the trail.

    Thanks to your feedback, we know to inform future customers ordering the windscreens by themselves, not as part of a kit, that the aftermarket heated windscreens we sell do not look like the original windscreens and if they intend to use their existing heated windscreen harness they may need to modify their wiring harness to work with the aftermarket heated windscreen. Modifications may include rerouting the factory harness and if they don’t have bullet connectors they may have to use more modern butt or spade connectors that can be attached with a standard set of wire crimpers. We will also add a link to the 50’ roll of glazing seal that we carry, GT106, to the heated windscreen page on our website and to our business system so salesmen know what glazing strip to offer customers. As far as the silver strip, one of my customers painted the glass to hide the strip. I’ve never had any other complaints.

    If you don’t want to cut the bullet connectors off your original harness I would be happy to send you jumper wires with bullet connectors already crimped on one end so you can crimp whatever connector you want on the other end. You are also welcome to return the he heated windscreens if you are that unhappy with them.

    Thank you,

    Buck

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Flagstaff, Arizona
    Posts
    1,102

    Default

    Buck thank you for your reply with the explanation.

    My assumption was that your company would be selling heated windscreens that had the same basic specs as the factory originals or the differences would be mentioned in the web site product description. Usually I'm a strong believer in "verify and never assume" when it comes to aftermarket parts, but I felt that your folks have always done a very good job of sourcing at least OEM quality aftermarket parts so verification was unnecessary.

    I directed the glass company replacing the windscreens for me to purchase them from Rovers North because I was confident that the windscreens sold by your company would be at least OEM quality and specification. And since the parts were from Rovers North I didn't bother to inspect the parts before the old windscreens were removed and the new ones were brought out.

    I made the mistake of assuming that the RN parts would meet factory fitment specifications and be fit for use out of the box without playing fit games. It was only when the project was far enough along that I was committed to use them when I saw that the wires were located in a non-stock location and pointed the wrong way. And of course the screen wire to hookup wire connection is too fragile to repoint them 180 degrees without a high likelihood of damage. And the highly visible wide silver strips were a surprise to me as well.

    The wiring location problem was fixed by making a tight U bend part way along the length of the hookup wires then pointing them to the corners where they were supposed to be located. The windscreen was pushed up to the top of the frame and the double layer of wires were pushed under the windscreen bottom edge with a screwdriver. That positioned the wires to be where they should have been located from the factory.

    [begin edited section] My bottom line is that if I know that a replacement part is different from factory fitment specifications and that I will need to make modifications to get it to work BEFORE I order the part I have no problem. I know what to expect before I open the box and am prepared to deal with it. It is the unexpected surprise factor of a part that is not just plug & go when I'm paying someone else to do the labour.

    All I ask is that if a replacement part has a different fitment than stock to mention that in the web site product description. I can easily handle that and make preparations if I know what I'm getting. [/Edited section]

    Painting the windscreens to hide the silver strips is a novel solution. As is using a US spade connector on short piece a wire with a bullet connector at the other end. This all pretty much confirms my feeling that these parts belong in a category I call "File to fit" parts. I'm not sure what the windscreens were designed for but it was not to replace Series heated windscreens unless the manufacturer had no idea where the windscreen harness is located on a Series truck. Either that or they didn't care.

    I have always believed that if I wanted high quality aftermarket parts that were fit for use out of the box and provided a long service life I could not do better than Rovers North. It was a shock to learn that this is not always so. Of course it would have been less of a shock if I had inspected the parts before I was committed to use them. Then I could have returned them and gone shopping elsewhere. No harm other than a time delay.

    Replacing windscreens is one of the few jobs that I farm out. I appreciate your willingness to take them back after they have been installed but I do not want to pay for them to be removed and then again for different windscreens to be installed.

    I'm not a fan of having a wire harness with little kludge bits of wire with different connectors at each end. I think instead I will spend the additional money to purchase a proper bullet connector crimping tool and make a proper connection to fit my existing wire harness.

    As far as rerouting the stock harness goes it would require having wires hanging in the middle of the scuttle vent opening where they can not be secured and would be more susceptible to being accidentally damaged. The factory ran the hot connection wires at the windscreen's corner so that they could be anchored to the scuttle section between the vent openings.

    Oh and the glazing strips I asked the glass company to order along with the windscreens were not ordered because the glass company could not find them. They are not ordered because the phone sales person told the person trying to make the order that RN did not carry that type of product. That they should just RTV the glass directly to the frame.

    You guys are a really good company with a well deserved high reputation. I have no idea why you decided that a manufacturer who provides a product that requires a LR to be modified in order to fit is better than other manufacturer's products. But I do ask that if it is not plug and go to let the customer know in the product description.
    Last edited by TeriAnn; 04-15-2015 at 09:35 AM. Reason: Added another paragraph for clarity

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    4

    Default

    . Hi Teriann,

    I hear you loud and clear. We need to let our customers know the wiring on our series heated windscreens do not match the original Land Rover Series heated windscreens, the heating ribbons go vertical and not horizontal and our heated windscreens have shiny silver stripes on them.

    We sell the highest quality series heated windscreen you can buy. There are other series heated windscreens out there, and they may even look identical to the original Land Rover heated series windscreens but they are not made to the same functional standard as ours.

    Our goal is to find a balance between quality, OEM specification, and cost. We found other companies that made heated windscreens and the heated windscreens we sell are the best quality we could find. Unfortunately they do cost a little more than lesser quality heated screens that would match the OE look but they don't cost as much as having a manufacturing company re-tool just to make the heated windscreens they make for us perfect. The trade-off for an affordable high quality heated windscreen is that it doesn't match the original heated windscreen. If we had perfect heated windscreens made no one would buy them because they would cost a fortune.

    We don't sell many heated windscreens to customers performing full restorations. This is because most of these customers keep their restored Series under cover in the winter and only take it out for a drive on a nice day. The majority of our customers that purchase our heated windscreens, use their series rovers as year-round daily drivers. For many of them their old 88" is their only car. That is how amazing Land Rovers are! They don't care as much about perfectly restoring their Land Rover as they do making their classic, functional, and reliable Land Rover a little more comfortable in cold weather. Some of these same customers we point to your website because they wanted to add power steering to their Series. Some of these customers we put in touch with Robert Davis because they want to convert their Series to a Mercedes diesel. I've even helped a customer figure out which Pertronix distributor would work for his Land Rover. Not only is this not original, we don't even sell Pertronix!

    My point is we do our best to make everyone happy by providing quality parts and technical support. Most of our customers are more concerned with quality than aesthetics. And for us here at Rovers North, and the majority of our customers, quality means function and reliability. We only sell parts that work. If we find out a part we sell doesn't work or doesn't last will find a better part. If we cannot find a better part, we will not sell that part anymore, period. You may still be able to buy that part somewhere but we will not sell it because it does not meet our standards. I am sorry you were not informed about the ribbon orientation, wire routing and the silver strips and that your glass company was not sold the proper glazing seal. I agree with you, this information needs to be on our website and communicated at the point of sale. I will make sure this gets taken care of. Thank you again for point this out. We will be sure to communicate the differences between our heated windscreen and the original heated windscreen to future customer and that we sell the proper glazing seal with the glass.

    Sincerely,

    Buck Kempner

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