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Old 07-24-2008, 05:03 PM
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Fried wire from ignition to soleniod?

Here's the history!

My starter was running on after letting off the ignition switch. Determined it was a defective solenoid, so replaced it, no problems, car started fine. Installed a Autometer tach, no problem, everything worked fine. Go out to the car tonight to start it up and thought it was in neutral. Turned the key over, car lurched forward a foot, let off ignition switch, car died. Smoke comes out of engine bay near firewall. Jump out and disconnect the positive battery cable, smoke stops.

Looked at the wiring harness for the ignition system and the wire from the ignition switch to the solenoid is melted! It evidenced itself at the connect for the MSD 6AL, this is where the original ballast resistor was, handy spot to wire in the power. Curiously, the MSD 6AL power wire was unharmed?

I took insulation off the harness about a foot each direction and the wire is toast. Looked the the solenoid connection, wire is toast. have not looked at the ignition switch connection, but guessing the wire is toast all the way to the switch.

I realize I will need to replace the wire from the switch to the solenoid, question is, what caused this, and what should I be looking to replace to insure it doesn't happen again?

As always, your input is greatly appreciated!

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Old 07-24-2008, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsdailey
Here's the history!

My starter was running on after letting off the ignition switch. Determined it was a defective solenoid, so replaced it, no problems, car started fine. Installed a Autometer tach, no problem, everything worked fine. Go out to the car tonight to start it up and thought it was in neutral. Turned the key over, car lurched forward a foot, let off ignition switch, car died. Smoke comes out of engine bay near firewall. Jump out and disconnect the positive battery cable, smoke stops.

Looked at the wiring harness for the ignition system and the wire from the ignition switch to the solenoid is melted! It evidenced itself at the connect for the MSD 6AL, this is where the original ballast resistor was, handy spot to wire in the power. Curiously, the MSD 6AL power wire was unharmed?

I took insulation off the harness about a foot each direction and the wire is toast. Looked the the solenoid connection, wire is toast. have not looked at the ignition switch connection, but guessing the wire is toast all the way to the switch.

I realize I will need to replace the wire from the switch to the solenoid, question is, what caused this, and what should I be looking to replace to insure it doesn't happen again?

As always, your input is greatly appreciated!
The wire is probably not heavy enough to handle both the solenoid and the MSD box. It may simply be to small of a wire.

Chet
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Old 07-24-2008, 06:18 PM
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Chet, very possible and I'll have the opportunity to replace it with a heavier gauge soon enough! I pulled the ignition switch, and the wiring harness from the switch to the firewall seems fine.
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Old 07-31-2008, 01:41 PM
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Are you sure the wire is the one from the switch to the solonoid (start solenoid power) and not the one from the solenoid to the ignition switch (a hot lead that feeds the switch for distribution)? If the wire is hot from the solenoid, and grounded momentarily to the firewall when the car jerked, that'd fry the wire from the solenoid to the firewall, but not from the switch to the firewall. Just a thought.

Pat
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Old 07-31-2008, 02:45 PM
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The wire was from the switch to the solenoid, and was fried from about one foot in front of the firewall plug to the solenoid. Someone had already replaced the original wire to the firewall plug, and to the ignition switch, got lucky there.

I had the switched power to the MSD connected to this wire as well, no harm to the MSD or wire. The old solenoid I changed had some damage, melted case where the plastic case meets the metal case. The original wire was an "original wire", 45 years old, and I think it just gave up the ghost.

Anyway, I stripped the wiring harness along the path of the fried wire, checked all the other wires for damage and replaced the melted wire. So far, everything is working fine!
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