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Ignition switch and starter motor switch

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  • Ignition switch and starter motor switch

    My '53 commander coupe has a 1958ish 289 V8, and the electrical system has been upgraded to 12 volt. I have two questions.

    First question, is there any way I can use the original 6 volt dash mounted toggle switch for the starter motor in the 12 volt set up, or is there an after market switch that will work? Currently the starter motor switch is a push button switch, mounted on the floor above the highbeam switch. There are two wires that go from this switch to the solenoid. The original starter motor switch (which is still in the car) is a toggle switch on the dash, next to the ignition switch. I'd prefer to go back to the original dash mounted toggle switch set up.

    I looked at the wiring diagram in the '53 shop manual, and if I'm reading it correctly there is only one wire from the original switch to the starter.

    Second question, I turn the key to the left to hit the "on" position for the ignition switch. Is this the original set up? You turn the key to the right to turn "on" most if not all "modern" ignition switches.


    John
    1953 Commander Coupe
    1954 Champion Sedan
    John
    1953 Commander Coupe
    1954 Champion Sedan
    1963 Lark

  • #2
    What you have is a real mix of Stude. stuff! The dash mounted toggle was for Automatic cars and only GROUNDS the solenoid to run the starter. I would think on a stick shift car the floor switch did the same. On a 12V car you have a 12V Solenoid with TWO small terminals on it, because one goes to the ignition switch START Term. for a "key start type switch" (you could use a 56-66 Stude switch and it should fit, but you would have to disconnect both of the existing ones.) the other is the 12V circuit used ONLY for starting and goes to the hot + side of the coil. The car drops back to 8-10 volts for running, which is handled by the second wire on the same term. of the coil that goes to the Ign. side of the Ignition Switch through a RESISTER or a Resistence (Pink) wire. The reason your car runs to the left of the switch is someone put the coil wire on the "Acc."(Accessory) side of the Sw. instead of the "Ign" side! Good luck!

    I just read the answer to your earlier post and see that after a long list of many people's inputs we have already determined that this engine is a 1960 engine numbered replacement engine mis-stamped as an "F" instead of a "P" and that it is a fully "built" Dave Thibault non-full flow engine!! That has some high performance Avanti equipment, that some of us may not remember from those older posts and I and the rest of us trying to answer this post did not know, this changes everything. I am not even sure the Stock valve adjustment clearance is right for this Bas$%5*#zed engine! [xx(]

    quote:Originally posted by jngregory

    My '53 commander coupe has a 1958ish 289 V8, and the electrical system has been upgraded to 12 volt. I have two questions.
    First question, is there any way I can use the original 6 volt dash mounted toggle switch for the starter motor in the 12 volt set up, or is there an after market switch that will work? Currently the starter motor switch is a push button switch, mounted on the floor above the highbeam switch. There are two wires that go from this switch to the solenoid. The original starter motor switch (which is still in the car) is a toggle switch on the dash, next to the ignition switch. I'd prefer to go back to the original dash mounted toggle switch set up.
    I looked at the wiring diagram in the '53 shop manual, and if I'm reading it correctly there is only one wire from the original switch to the starter.
    Second question, I turn the key to the left to hit the "on" position for the ignition switch. Is this the original set up? You turn the key to the right to turn "on" most if not all "modern" ignition switches.
    John
    StudeRich
    Studebakers Northwest
    Ferndale, WA
    StudeRich
    Second Generation Stude Driver,
    Proud '54 Starliner Owner

    Comment


    • #3
      Rich, was it a toggle or a push button on A.D. cars? I seem to remember seeing a round push button, about 5/16" in diameter; chrome. If a toggle switch were used, it'd have to be spring-return, or smoke could get out, sooner or later.

      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

      Comment


      • #4
        quote:Originally posted by jngregory

        My '53 commander coupe has a 1958ish 289 V8, and the electrical system has been upgraded to 12 volt. I have two questions.

        First question, is there any way I can use the original 6 volt dash mounted toggle switch for the starter motor in the 12 volt set up, or is there an after market switch that will work? Currently the starter motor switch is a push button switch, mounted on the floor above the highbeam switch. There are two wires that go from this switch to the solenoid. The original starter motor switch (which is still in the car) is a toggle switch on the dash, next to the ignition switch. I'd prefer to go back to the original dash mounted toggle switch set up.

        I looked at the wiring diagram in the '53 shop manual, and if I'm reading it correctly there is only one wire from the original switch to the starter.

        Second question, I turn the key to the left to hit the "on" position for the ignition switch. Is this the original set up? You turn the key to the right to turn "on" most if not all "modern" ignition switches.


        John
        1953 Commander Coupe
        1954 Champion Sedan
        John, is the car a manual or automatic? Manual transmission cars had the floor-mounted starter switch, located so that a projection on the clutch pedal would actuate the switch when you step on the clutch.
        I had a '54 Champion, and it was equipped that way.

        IIRC, automatic tranny cars had a push-button switch, not a toggle switch to work the starter. If a toggle switch were to be used, it would have to have a spring-return feature.

        Either OEM switch would be adequate for a 12 volt starter circuit. The switch controls the starter solenoid, which does the heavy lifting to switch the starter motor itself on and off.

        Sounds like somebody may have swapped wires between the accessory and ignition terminals on the ignition switch. The switch body "should" be marked: BAT, ACC, & IGN.

        Perhaps one of the other forum members can verify if I'm right or wrong about the toggle vs push-button switch on the automatic drive cars.

        I think the solenoids used on some 6 volt cars used a grounding switch. One end of the solenoid coil is connected internally to the "hot" stud, and the wire from the small stud goes to the starter switch, which simply completes the circuit to ground when actuated. Courtesy lights are normally wired the same way, as an example. Since you have converted to 12 volts, you should use a 12 volt solenoid, and I don't know if any of them are made for use with a grounding switch. Normally, you would have a two-terminal starter switch, with one terminal connected to the "start" terminal on the solenoid, and the other to a 12 volt source. My preference would be to use the "ign" terminal on the key switch, so he starter could not be activated unless the key were on. Safety, and all that.

        Hope this helps,

        Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
        Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

        Comment


        • #5
          Sorry Guys but the switch I was thinking of is the one that was on all of the 1954 Stude. Commanders & the Land Cruiser that I have owned, and I believe it is the one he has! They are toggles that only go down and are spring loaded and are right next to the Ign. Sw. YES he "thinks" he has a 1953 like you remember, but remember, everything on this car is wrong!

          Gordr; I see that you must have read my post, because you question the "toggle" starter switch in your 1st. post. But why then, did you come back in on the second post and re-state every single thing I said (in your own words of course) Just curious, it's OK no hard feelings !
          StudeRich
          Second Generation Stude Driver,
          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

          Comment


          • #6
            Rich, when I started composing my post, your reply had not yet appeared. After I hit "submit", my reply appeared directly below yours. I could see that I had basically duplicated your response, but I didn't know it at the time.

            After I read your post, I composed and sent the one about toggles, because I'm sure I have seen push buttons on some A.D. cars; maybe the '50s? For whatever reason, the system got the time-stamps wrong. Honest! I wouldn't have bothered writing and sending the long post I did, had yours already been there for me to see. You certainly had it covered.

            I suppose I could have gone back and deleted my first detailed post, but I really didn't think it was necessary. No offense intended to anyone.

            Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
            Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

            Comment


            • #7
              Hey Gord, I've done that myself! We must both type at 2 words per minute! [:0] HA! I guess it proves great minds think alike! [^][^]

              StudeRich
              Studebakers Northwest
              Ferndale, WA
              StudeRich
              Second Generation Stude Driver,
              Proud '54 Starliner Owner

              Comment


              • #8
                StudeRich and Gord,

                Thanks much for both your responses. This is definitely a '53 Commander. I don't know what tranny it was orginally equipped with but it now has a T85 3 sp with OD.

                The starter switch on the floor was installed in the recent past. As StudeRich describes, the original toggle (spring loaded return) is on the dash immediately to the left of the ignition switch.

                I think you answered my question, that the toggle switch can't be used with the 12 volt solenoid. I suppose I should install a proper ignition switch and do away with the starter button on the floor.

                With respect to my other question about whether the left position should be the "on" position for the ignition switch, I'll have a look under the dash and see if the wires are screwed up.

                Last, StudeRich - you are sharp to remember my earlier posts about the Thibeault engine! In fact, I'm still reassembling that engine after having it line-bored, etc. The valve adjustment questions relate to another 289 engine I recently bought.

                John
                1953 Commander Coupe
                1954 Champion Sedan
                John
                1953 Commander Coupe
                1954 Champion Sedan
                1963 Lark

                Comment


                • #9
                  You are both right re: toggle switch vrs. push button. It was the Champion w/ automatic that used the dash mounted push button. V8 automatic cars had the toggle. In those years Stude 6 and 8 cyl. cars used completely different instrument panels.
                  John, perhaps the key switch in your car isn't even a Stude switch. The starter switch on the floor, activated by depressing the clutch pedal, is what manual trans. Studes used. I think you could use the original toggle switch if you could find the right starter solenoid/relay combination from an industrial parts house.


                  Dwain G.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    If you're converted to 12V negative ground, your OEM, grounding, spring-loaded toggle won't work by itself. You need to send 12V to the new starter relay. This is easily accomplished by wiring a small relay that will close when grounded by your toggle switch & provide 12V to your starter relay. (There are starter relays available that will actuate with a ground, but they're more expensive & harder to locate than the <$10 standard Ford starter relay available at 7-11s nationwide)

                    I'm looking into this exact thing as someone replaced the toggle & ignition switch with a modern ignition switch that has the starter circuit built in (hold past run to start, spring-loaded return to run - just like modern cars).

                    It's also a common problem for the early Fords I play with too after conversion to 12V negative ground. OEM starter button is grounding, so must be used with a relay (or replaced with a two-terminal push button switch that doesn't look original).

                    It's a very basic circuit to wire up - let me know if you need a diagram.

                    Daddy always said, if yer gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough & I'm one tough sumbitch!
                    -------------------
                    Daddy always said, if yer gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough & I\'m one tough sumbiatch!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Ernie, any of those little 12 volt Bosch-style "cube" relays so ubiquitous in modern cars could be used to mate up the grounding toggle switch with a later-style solenoid on a 12 volt system.

                      John, as Dwain points out, the toggle switch is a feature used only on automatic drive cars. Manual tranny cars used the starter switch under the clutch pedal. I'd recommend you go with the latter, and save the dash location for some accessory switch, maybe foglights. Having to depress the clutch to start is a safety feature, plus it can really be fun at car shows to mystify onlookers by starting the car "no hands".

                      I had an old Caddy with the Wonderbar radio tuned by a foot switch; a never-ceasing source of entertainment.

                      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands
                      Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thank you for the advice.

                        Ernie or Gord: I would like to try to hook up my old grounding toggle switch to the new 12 volt starter solenoid, and do away with the floor mounted push button switch (it's modern, and not integrated with the clutch pedal). If I understand correctly, I'll have to install a relay between the toggle switch and the solenoid. The toggle switch will activate the relay, and the relay will then provide the 12 volt two wire delivery to the solenoid. I'm electrically challenged, so if you could provide a simple diagram for me, I'd be very grateful. Also, can you tell me what I ask for when I go to the local auto parts store - will "little 12 volt Bosch-style cube relay" get me what I need?

                        Thanks.

                        John
                        1953 Commander Coupe
                        1954 Champion Sedan
                        John
                        1953 Commander Coupe
                        1954 Champion Sedan
                        1963 Lark

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          John,

                          Having come late to this thread, I was thinking what's been proposed since I read your initial question.

                          What I CAN ADD is that you could get an adequate 12volt cube relay from Radio Shack for quite likely WAY less than something you'd buy from an auto parts place! Given what little you're gonna ask this relay to do (the load of a starter solenoid coil is VERY little), one of these Radio Shack relays will do just fine!
                          BTW, there's a way to employ this sorta cube relay if one's in need of an overdrive relay. You can even FIT a cube relay INSIDE the cannister of the original O/D relay - retain the external fuse fit and function and no one's the wiser about it![^]

                          BTW - let me know if you need a diagram of how to wire this baby up!

                          Miscreant adrift in
                          the BerStuda Triangle


                          1957 Transtar 1/2ton
                          1960 Larkvertible V8
                          1958 Provincial wagon
                          1953 Commander coupe

                          No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Here's a very basic & crude drawing I did with powerpoint & saved as a .jpg - if you know powerpoint at all, you understand the limitations. Hope this helps some...


                            Daddy always said, if yer gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough & I'm one tough sumbitch!
                            -------------------
                            Daddy always said, if yer gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough & I\'m one tough sumbiatch!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have a 62 gt hawk with a push button that starts it when the key is turned to the right but not all the way, just to the on position it has a wire out off each terminal. I have a new ignition switch i would have to put in. what wires go where? any help would very much be appreciated.

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