Reverse Light Activation Option for the Deuce


New member
Fort One Bay - Cape Cod, MA
Hi, I wanted to share with you all an option that I came up with to activate reverse lights in the Deuce. These can be wired to activate like any vehicle on the road. I used a Single Pole / Double Throw switch (on,off,on switch) to power the activation of a mechanical limiting (proximity) switch. This Single Pole / Double Throw switch allows the lights to come on while in reverse, or shut them off so they don't come on at all, or to come on when I choose for rear auxiliary illumination. It is pretty easy to install this system, the hardest part is drilling the two mounting holes in the cab cross member. First you need to get ahold of an electronic limit switch (see the photo for the part number), they can be purchased from industrial supply companies like MSC or Grainger. Next you run your wire from your power supply/switch - (SP/DT or SP/ST) down the frame rail and up thru the cab cross member tunnel (not to be confused with the drive train tunnel). This wire will go to one of the screws inside the limit switch, then another wire will go out to the lights. There are four sets of contact screws in this limit switch. For this modification we will be using the two closest to the contactor tip. When the mechanical contactor tip is pressed in the internal contactor allows power to run from the supply/switch to your lights. The rear set of screws does the opposite, they are always contacted and open the circuit when the mechanical contactor is depressed. I flipped the mechanical contactor 90 degrees to allow the contactor wheel to roll along the shaft on the transmission. This system is operated by the rear shaft on the transmission which is not used for anything on a standard Deuce. When you shift into reverse the shaft travels rearward. There is a lot of forgiving in the travel in the limit switch but you can hear a slight click when it makes its electrical contact, the rest of the travel is just extra. What I did is shift the truck into reverse and use a transfer punch to mark the holes to mount the unit. I mounted it so that the contactor depresses to a click and then just a hair more. You will need to use a compact right angle drill to drill your holes. On the model limit switch I used, I had to drill out one of the mounting holes to have two thru bolt mounting. This unit has the mounting option of two thru bolts and two threaded holes, but they are on opposite corners. It is way easier to wire the unit before final bolting to the truck. All this literature may sound confusing or a bit much, but this is very easy to do. To use the Single Pole Double Throw switch option you will have to run an additional wire from the switch to the limit switch. This wire will also connect to the terminal with the rear lights wire (the one that goes out to the lights) in the limit switch. This will achieve direct power to the lights when you press the switch into this position. The switch operates: up - auto, middle - off, down - manual power to lights (up and down can be reversed depending which wire you connect to which switch terminal). Please post any question you may have that I haven't covered in this gibberish! Give it a try, now you will have auto on reverse lights, Cool huh? P.S. These switches have gaskets so there won't be a concern for water intrusion.


Last edited:


Well-known member
Steel Soldiers Supporter
Leesburg, GA
Awesome writeup. I came in this thread thinking I would answer a question as many Deuce owners don't realize that even airshift transfer trucks still have that rod coming out of the back of the transmission that used to switch the sprag from forward to reverse!!!
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