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Old 07-06-2010, 15:24   #1
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Help with Starter

The starter just won't start. If I take a screw driver and cross the terminals on the solenoid it turns over. To eliminate the possibility of it being the helm switch, I shorted the wire coming from the switch and the power from the battery, and again all I get is a light click. Not very loud and only does it once.
So what should I check or does it sound like a bad solenoid?
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Old 07-06-2010, 15:34   #2
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Sounds like a bad solenoid to me (assuming you have a good charge in your battery).
Only other thing might be bad connection(s).
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Old 07-06-2010, 15:44   #3
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I'm confused. If you short it with the screwdriver it does turn the engine over?

If so, then your solenoid is working because if it wasn't, you'd just hear the starter spinning. It wouldn't pop out the bendix and engage the flywheel to turn over the motor.

I think the fact that you get a click means the solenoid is working, you're just not getting enough power to spin the motor.
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Old 07-06-2010, 15:48   #4
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Not enough voltage. Common problem with older wiring or Yanmars.
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Old 07-06-2010, 15:52   #5
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If so, then your solenoid is working because if it wasn't, you'd just hear the starter spinning.
Oh it ain't necessarily soooo

Some solenoids have an arm that pushes the gear out to engage with the flywheel and some starters just use centrifugal force to spin the gear out.

Is sounds like the OP has a bad solenoid. You may be able to repair it but it is probably just better getting a replacement.

But it could also be a bad connection on the solenoid activation wiring.
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Old 07-06-2010, 15:57   #6
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Oh it ain't necessarily soooo

Some solenoids have an arm that pushes the gear out to engage with the flywheel and some starters just use centrifugal force to spin the gear out.
If his starter only used centrifugal forced to spin the bendix out and his solenoid wasn't working, then wouldn't the starter stay engaged instead of refusing to engage?

I think if he's shorting it across the solenoid and still turning the motor over, the solenoid is still in his power loop and should be working. It would be something outside of that loop causing a voltage drain like a bad ground.
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Old 07-06-2010, 16:01   #7
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When a centrifugally thrown bendix on a starter has it's power supply removed it is driven from the flywheel end rather than the motor end. By the nature of the beast being driven from the flywheel end will drive the bendix back away from the flywheel.
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Old 07-06-2010, 16:10   #8
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for a clarification it is a Perkins, so I fear it may be a Lucas starter. And it had been doing it for a while, but eventually it would start with repeated tries. But now nothing happens except the click I mentioned
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Old 07-06-2010, 16:29   #9
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Your solenoid has two big copper contacts inside and a large copper contact that shorts across them when the solenoid activates. You may be able to open up the solenoid and clean those contacts with a fine file (don't use sandpaper). I have done this for an emergency but if you are in a place where a replacement can be purchased it is probably better to just buy a new one.

http://www.ehow.com/video_2328097_di...id-system.html

But first, did you use a jumper wire from the battery to both contacts on the solenoid to eliminate a bad connection in the wiring?

Jetexas, there is a large coil spring in there as well and a spiral groove that the gear rides in. The spinning starter throws the gear out and then the spinning flywheel throws it back.
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Old 07-06-2010, 16:50   #10
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Just replaced one starter motor last week.If you give the solenoid a tap with the hammer then it will probably work each time you need to restart the motor.Time for a new one.Much safer.
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Old 07-06-2010, 18:58   #11
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Hang on, there --

I think that the OP says that when he shorts between the "hot post" and the solenoid coil terminal that the starter works, turning over the engine. If this is correct, then there is nothing wrong with the solenoid. The problem is inadequate voltage under load to the solenoid coil. The source of this problem can be several things: bad starter switch, bad connections somewhere between the switch and it's power source or between the switch and the solenoid, a bad bit of wire due to corrosion etc between the switch and the solenoid. Somewhere there is voltage drop under load, enough so that the solenoid does not fully engage, and thus does not supply power to the starter. Other than replacing the lot, one is faced with measuring the voltage UNDER FULL LOAD (ie, while truning the switch to start position) at various places along the path from battery supply through the switch and on down to the solenoid itself. A PITA, but eventually you will find the guilty spot and can then repair it.

Good luck with it... it ain't rocket science!

Cheers,

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Old 07-06-2010, 19:45   #12
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Jim, if you read it again he says the the starter turns over the engine when he shorts across the two large leads on the solenoid, but it doesn't if he jumpers the ignition lead to the solenoid.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:25   #13
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well I tried something Greg said to try. I took the wire coming from the key switch to the solenoid directly to the battery and it turned the engine over. Then I hooked everything back up and now it starts like it is suppose to.
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:42   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JusDreaming View Post
The starter just won't start. If I take a screw driver and cross the terminals on the solenoid it turns over. To eliminate the possibility of it being the helm switch, I shorted the wire coming from the switch and the power from the battery, and again all I get is a light click. Not very loud and only does it once.
So what should I check or does it sound like a bad solenoid?
Mine did the same thing last year. Odds are 90+% it is corroded wiring to the starter. And it is most likely in a plug harness (specially the one at the engine). Mine was a plug at the harness that I had to jumper around.

It's not the starter if it turns when you jump it!
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Old 08-06-2010, 07:28   #15
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