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Re:turn the key and nothing happends

3384 Views 22 Replies 12 Participants Last post by  rb74440
Which fuse was blown? ???

JD 8)
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And, the important question about the fuse,... did the new one burn-out during your short trip, or was that just a coincidental finding ?.

I'd check the ballast resistor, sometimes they get pretty hot pretty quick, and go open-circuit on ya...

Check for voltage on both sides of the ballast resistor.
AZ-Trailduster said:
i cant read it, but on my 79 Trailduster is was the bottom left one
on my 76 rc the bottom left one is either the main power fuse or the headlight fuse. can't remember exactly which right now. will check later for you.

The friend that showed you how to use the piece of wire knows what is wrong. Either he didn't tell you or you are not telling us. It is either a lack of ground to the starter relay or a lack of B+ to the starter relay. Find out which one and trace back to where the problem comes from and fix it.
when your friend showed you how to use that piece of wire to start it, did he also tell you to check your neutral safety switch. if it is bad it can cause the same kinds of problems you are describing.

Amen georgeda and intense...
I didn't say go buy a new ballast, I said check the voltage on each side of it....

You've got figure out where the flow of electric current stops.
DON"T just go buying and throwing parts at it... get out a meter, or a simple taillight socket with a bulb in it, or a continuity tester, and fin out where the fire stops.

The neutral safety switch is a good candidate...
as are the ballast, starter solenoid, ignition switch...

And even things as simple as an unclean, slightly loose or corroded battery, ground or starter cable(s).
should be on the left side of the tran above the pan. 1 1/16 socket will take it off. 3 wires on coming off it. Sometime the plug comes off. If you can start it with a wire, your cables and batt are okay.
The neutral start swirch is on the tranny, near where the shift linkage connects. I suspect the start relay, mounted on the driver side wheel well is the culprit. The switch on the transmission supplies ground (negitive) for this relay.
Well, dang it, get some manuals and start coloring the pictures, I know you can, and then your life would be soooo much simpler ;D

I place my bet with Boba on the next place to check.
As my tagline says,... damn I hate when that happens... :-*
That'll teach me to be a smart aleck.........NOT!

But at least you'd be looking at the line drawings, and reading the text...
well anyways, before i go buy a new neutral saftey switch, is there anyway to test this?
Get out your brandy-dandy new test light, clip one side to the positive side of the battery, and probe the green wire with the white tracer coming off the starter relay (bottom terminal, toward the front of the truck, labeled "G") Make sure the trans is in park when doing this. If you get light, the switch is good. If not, the switch is bad or theres a broken wire. If the switch is good, however, put the test light clip to ground, and probe the "BAT" terminal. There should be light. If not, the relay feed wire is broken somewhere. If that checks out, probe the "IGN" terminal. There should be light only when the key is turned to "Start". If this test fails, the ignition switch is bad or theres a broken wire between the ign switch and the relay. If all of these tests pass, replace the relay. (This is assuming the starting method your friend taught you involves shorting 'BAT' to 'SOL'. If it's different, let us know)

Just my $.02, hope it helps!
Matt {peace}
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Damn Smokey, I'm gonna need to get a bigger hat ;)
since you have the dim light when you tested the circuit, I would be checking the Bulkhead Connectors for corroded terminals. you may have high resistence there
I agree... Corrosion could be dropping the voltage at the "IGN" terminal to just below the relay's 'pull-in' voltage. This is probably why it'll "kick" if you hold the key for a few seconds. Find your bulkhead connectors (there should be 4 on or near the firewall right by the relay - [3] 8-connector and [1] 4 connector) Only one has orange wires coming out - That's the one you need to clean. Hit both parts of it with contact cleaner spray (from parts store or radio shack) and a wire brush (disconnect the battery first). Put them back together and start 'er up! (If you test the IGN terminal again the light should be full brightness now.)

Just my $.02, hope it helps!

Matt {peace}
Did we already rant about cleaning the battery terminals, and the connections at the other end, and the ground strap between the block and the firewall, and a ground strap between the frame and the engine, and, and,... ???
in arz.ill bet they have a votec there ...get in touch with the instructer ,and see if he or one of his senior students will run a diog. check for you.. here they only charge you for the parts then get to be friends ,with one of the smarter students and he can get you in as a project most any time you have a problem....tcv
I have this same problem on my rig. When you are having trouble starting it, tap up on your shifter, I'll be willing to bet your linkage is loose and there in lies yer problem, just my spare schange.
Stevo said:
Smokey said:
Did we already rant about cleaning the battery terminals, and the connections at the other end, and the ground strap between the block and the firewall, and a ground strap between the frame and the engine, and, and,... ???

The bulkhead connectors have nothing to do with the grounds or battery connections. These are the wiring harnesses that come through the firewall for the engine and front end...and...and...and! The starter relay gets its 12 volts through these connectors, it doesnt just get voltage from thin air.

Now, AZ-Trailduster, have you checked the bulkhead connectors?
Me thinks you are trying to be a wise guy!!!
AZ-Trailduster said:
I dont know where the grounds are for this damned thing. I've asked people and no one seems to know. I'm having bad luck with this truck. I special ordered a new speedo cable, within 5 mins of having it on...the piece of shit breaks. Then the truck stalls, and of course i cant get it started. I like my truck, but its a peice of shit. :\'(

I'm almost better off buying a new car
Don't buy a new car, buy a Chilton or Haynes manual. It'll cost a lot less! ;D Old trucks are great to learn basic mechanics on, since they're very straight-forward and somewhat forgiving. There's no computers or other complex crap to worry about, and you don't need to spend $50 to hook it up to a diagnostic machine, only to have it tell you that a $5 sensor is bad. Trust me. Get a manual and study it. Keep it in the John if you want. It'll teach you almost everything you need to know to keep your truck running. Anything else you can learn here - just ask! I have a Haynes, and the wiring diagrams in the back have been a lifesaver for me.
Now, with that said, close your eyes, take a deep breath, and relax. Feel better? Good! Now go clean your bulkhead connectors. You should clean all of them, since if one terminal has corrosion, it's a safe bet they all have it. But if you just want to get running, the one with orange wires coming off it is your main offender. That should cure your headache instantly!

Just my $.02, hope it helps!

Matt {peace}
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Ok my turn to rant. NEUTRAL SAFETY SWITCH! Mine just went to hell and it was doing same thing. Took me 10 minutes to check it. I went to radio shack and dropped 10.00 on a multi-meter (there on sale this week) came home checked the switch for continuity. Nope!! So i put a new switch in. 7.50 at auto zone. Al better now!!!!!!!!!

.02 ;)
AZ-Trailduster said:
i spoke to soon, today when i was going back to work from lunch, i turn the key and nothing happends...i tried a few more times (20-30) and finally got it to start. Then after work it started right up on the first try. I asked a few of my friends over at the dodge dealer, and they threw out a few ideas. (Making sure the connection is good between the starter relay and the body, make sure ignition switch is working like it should, etc.)

I tried a new ignition switch, and that dosent change anything.
I have noticed one thing though. Sometimes if i just hold the key for 10-20 seconds. The truck will sometimes start up. Anyone have any other ideas?
if you are stiil having problems, you might check the connections on the back of your ammeter. right after i first got my rc kept having some of the same problems you described.
ended up being a loose connection on the ammeter. just another thought on the matter.

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