Bad news this week. I finished up my wiring and attached the battery, and then moved on to measuring voltages making sure everything was connected properly. I got as far as the dashboard when, as soon as I inserted the voltage probes into the inspection sockets on the dashboard, I heard a pop and the dashboard lights went out.

I went to grab a screwdriver to open up the dashboard and see what had gone wrong, but by the time I got back around to the front of the car (I store my tools in the back) there was a huge amount of smoke and the battery terminals were stuck on, glowing red. The earth wire from the dashboard was also glowing red hot, so I bailed and called 000. Thankfully, by the time the fire truck arrived I’d managed to disconnect the battery and stop the fire getting any worse.

The inspection sockets that shorted out are one of two components that aren’t fused (the starter motor is the other one).

The damage was - I think - limited to the wiring harness itself and the inspection sockets, but I’m not sure (it seems possible that the voltage control box and several gauges were damaged, given their proximity). Given that I need to replace the wiring harness, and I’m not sure what else, I think I’ll give things a break until the end of the year, finish off some other stuff I’m working on, and come back to it when I’m ready.