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Discussion Starter #1
OK everyone.....you were helpful to get me on the right tract for my speedo issue, now here is an issue I'm sure some of you have encountered. My 66gto has a newly re-built 389 and I'm continually having starting issues. I first thought it might be the common"Hot Start" problem that many GTO's have. When it occurs it usually happens after I have driven it a bit and try to re-start it after a short break. The solenoid doesn't even make a sound and the amp gauge pings over to about -30 amps when turning the key. I replaced the starter with a high torque type and it still happens. Now it is happening even when the engine is cold.....the first start up. If I put a battery charger on the battery it seems to help most of the time...but not always.....Oh ya, I replaced the battery too and the negative ground cable. I thought I would try a remote solenoid, but it doesn't seem to be a "Hot Start" issue..... I'm thinking it might be either a bad ground somewhere....maybe put a ground strap directly from one of the starter bolts to the body of the car ...or maybe the neutral safety switch is grounding out or soomething............any ideas?
 

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I`d check for voltage at that purple wire going to the starter when this happens. If you do have voltage, then maybe dissconnect it from the starter and test for the same condition you have with the volt gauge inside the car. If so, then you have some short inside the car, if not, then try to jump the starter under the car by shorting out the battery post to the purple wire post to see if the car starts.
 

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67 Basket Case Restorer
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Whatever is going on is progressing, which is good. Once it quits completely, it is more easily found. ;)
I would start by eliminating the amp gauge first, as it can be the problem and usually carries the power thru it for the entire car. If that doesn't help I would use a test light at the start terminal on the solenoid, which should be the purple wire. Have someone turn the key and see if power is even getting to the solenoid. IF NOT, I would suspect the ignition switch itself may be shorting internally or a wire in the stream is grounding out. If the light comes on, it gets a little harder. Remove the wire from the terminal and place a volt meter between to measure how much voltage is getting there. If less than 10, it is grounding some where. If it is still the original harness, I would pull the wires out of the metal sleeve between the block and manifold first, as they will get brittle there and crack. It could be the purple wire is only holding on by a few strands.
Hope all this makes sense and helps....:)

Well, I see me and Rukee were on the same page at the same time......:lol:
 

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Good advice above, but I doubt it's the amp guage. These gauges don't run the full amperage like the old Mopars do that burnt up wiring and dashes. It sounds to me like a HIGH RESISTANCE problem in the "purple wire" part of the equation. If a remote starter hooked up to bypass the ign switch part of the system cranks the engine over, It is indeed that circuit. This is usually what the problem is with these cars: high resistance in the primary circuit from ign switch to the solenoid. Check the bulkhead connector at the firewall for corrosion, and remember to disconnect the battery from the car when using an ohmmeter. Good luck. All due respect, but the type of distributor it has has nothing to do with the cranking over of the engine. It doesn't even need a distributor in place to crank over.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Wow ! You guys have given me much to think about and test........Given your responses I'll give you all a little more details........The shop that put my engine in wanted to give me some added protection from a possible theft....first of all, I have electronic ignition so there's no wire going to the starter for the added voltage...just the ignition switch wire and the battery positive cable.......I understand that with normal point ignition you need the other wire to temporarily boast the voltage from 8 to 10 volts for the solenoid to kick in.........with pointless ignition, that's not an issue.....The other thing is...the theft issue...my buddy that owns the shop had a dead switch button installed.........so..I don't have a purple wire from the harness anymore going to the starter....I have a wire..I think white in color.....coming from the ignition switch to this button that must be depressed while turning the start key...I do understand ALL of your comments and will try to isolate the issue........If I understand this process...I'll first disconnect this button thing that was installed and see if that is the issue....if not ...then see if the car will start by jumping over the ignition directly at the solenoid with a remote starting switch.......
 

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That's the ticket. Check the kill switch first, then see if the starter/solenoid is okay by using a remote. In my past experience, it is usually a resistance/bad connection problem in the bulkhead connector, park/neutral switch, ign. switch itself, or the wiring from the switch to the solenoid. Voltage drop testing (if you know how) is a big help here. (google voltage drop test to learn how). You're not getting the current to the starter because the path is restricted by corrosion or a bad connection. If it was a short, you'd have power all the time, or smoke and a fire. You'll find it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
thanks again.....It will be a few weeks before I get to it....but will definitely report back......
 

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The reason I suggested bypassing the amp gauge is because you mentioned it pegged at negative 30. I assume it is an aftermarket add on under the dash. I've seen them go bad quite often. If your test of bypassing the remote start button still results in a neg 30 reading, try the gauge before you tear anything else apart. It sounds more like a dead ground than an open circuit. Could be the wire to/from the remote switch is pinched too.....:willy: Don't ya love trouble shooting ...:D
 

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I thought a dead ground ( no ground) IS an open circuit. At least that's what I've always run across! You need a voltage source, a load, and a ground to complete the circuit. And yeah, if the ammeter pegs on discharge with the remote starter, he's got serious voltage drop problems! Let's hope not.............
 

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I thought a dead ground ( no ground) IS an open circuit. At least that's what I've always run across! You need a voltage source, a load, and a ground to complete the circuit. And yeah, if the ammeter pegs on discharge with the remote starter, he's got serious voltage drop problems! Let's hope not.............
You're right, I used the wrong terminology. I should've said 'dead short'.
 

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Yes indeed. Bad ground= open circuit or high resistance in circuit=no or low voltage to load(in this case, the starter motor).
Short, or "Dead short" = closed circuit or no resistance/low resistance generally PRIOR to the load, and supplies full voltage until something fries. Electricity, like water and livestock, is lazy. It takes the path of least resistance. But you knew all of this stuff. Heck, you weld stuff all the time...........
With these old cars, in my case, I always seem to have bad grounds or corroded connections. About 10 bad grounds for every short...
 

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Definetly, go after the 'kill button' first. Most guys will use an off the shelf button that does not have the load rating that a starter solenoid needs. See the size of that purple wire? :eek:
The switch doesn't give up its life quickly ( resistance will increase first). When you press it, if the key is already turned to start, you will be giving the switch a nice arc internally, which will start ( very quickly) to carbon up the contact area of the switch. You can just take the switch out of the circuit and connect those two wires together and see if your problem goes away. If it does, replace the switch with a button or switch with contact ratings of at least 20 amps ( leave it out). Other thing you can do is make sure switch is either on or button already pushed, before you turn the key to start. THis way you will be drawing the high load thru closed contacts which will last much longer, than thru 'switching ' contacts that arc.

rich
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks to ALL you guys for the info......I can't believe the response from ALL of you for this very puzzling and frustrating issue........This last summer I was afraid to take it our anywhere, where I had to park it awhile, such as a local car show........The ones I did take it to I just held my breath while starting it.......The more I read from you guys, the more I think its likely it's that start button.......since the issue has gotten steadily worse as time has gone by since its install, a little over a year ago.......After the Holidays I'll take it out.......I also have to stall my new original style 66 shifter .....I bought the car with a t400 trany with a 67 style his and her shifter......I traded a guy on Ebay for my 67 style shifter and console top with bezel for a reconditioned 66 shifter with the conversion kit installed to accommodate my t400 , 3 gears.....and a real nice console top with original 66 bezel..Here is Gary's email.. "[email protected]" if anyone out there needs shifter or console help.....He is a real gentlemen and an honest guy....some of you may wonder if I got a good deal or not, given that the his and hers shifter is an expensive and somewhat rare item.......But I got what I wanted...so isn't that the important thing....now my 66 will look like a 66 even though I have a later trany in it......

Merry Christmas to ALL and have a safe New Year's Eve........

BY the way Rich......I spent some time up in your neighborhood...in 1971 after I was released from active duty in the Navy I lived in Manchester ...on the East side and worked in a gas station down town by the river......I still remember the Tornado or twister of some kind that came down the river and we had to close up the lube bay doors and stay inside while the thing past over...It was like it went from day to night in minutes.........and back again......real strange.....Anyway thanks for your advice.....
 

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Yeh, my money is on the 'button' too!
Been up in Merrimack for 33 years. Kinda love it up here, even with the New England weather , the 'spice of life'!

I was in the Navy back in 68 to 75. Airdale. Jezebell operator on a P-2 and P-3.
Really tough trying to push one when it broke down while on a mission.:lol:
 

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In addition to the other suggestions, check for a bad or out of adjustment neutral safety switch, Keep a foot on the brake and try starting the car as you slowly move the shifter from park to drive.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I thought about that when I had the his and hers shifter in.........now that I have an original style 66 shifter with new neutral safety switch..............I'll hopefully remove that issue from the equation upon install....thanks again to ALL.......
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Hi All,

It’s been a while since I’ve been on this site……..Update….My 66 GTO went in for new paint last month and it’s taking a little longer than I would like….but hopefully worth the wait….Blue Charcoal….The starting problem was rectified by adding a remote solenoid mounted on the frame drivers side. Works great………I also talked before about taking the His and hers shifter out and installing an original 66 shifter with a shift kit to accommodate the t400 that is in it………done that too………looks good and more correct for the car……..still need to work in the kick down problem…….will get a new switch and play with the adjustment on the plate…………hope I can figure it out………that’s all for now….will load pics when the car is painted………..oh ya….I also got some new Rally 1 wheels for it……….will mount them with new red line tires when the car is painted………can hardly wait……..
 

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Thanks for the update, Earl. Was your '66 originally Blue Charcoal?? It's a really good looking color, and not often seen. Rukee and I are lucky enough to own Blue Charcoal '65 hardtops....it looks GREAT on the flowing lines of a '66!!! (and it's surprisingly contemporary, too!)
 
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