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  • Electrical: No Juice to the Starter?

    Tried to start my GT Hawk yesterday. She turned over several times without firing and then: nothing. Headlights still seemed strong, add a charge to the battery overnight just in case, still not a noise from the starter (it had recently been rebuilt).
    I'm going try replacing the solenoid in the morning. If that's not the problem, could it maybe be the ignition switch?
    Lou Van Anne
    62 Champ
    64 R2 GT Hawk
    79 Avanti II

  • #2
    If you have a "remote" starter tool, it would be easy to bypass the ignition switch for testing the solenoid. Also, a multi-meter would allow you to test for voltage and continuity. Another possibility is that one of the brushes have hung up in the spring loaded retainer, and not contacting the armature. Perhaps a little bump from one of those plastic dead blow hammers would jar it forward. Just a few suggestions.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC

    SDC member since 1975

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    • #3
      Test and diagnose before replacing parts.
      You can jump across the solenoid with a heavy wire or pliers, but wear gloves to prevent the possibility of burns.

      Comment


      • #4
        Do not forget to check the Battery Terminals!

        It is VERY common to turn the Engine over and then quit when the Load on the loose Cables causes an Open Circuit at the Battery Post, sometimes from boiling Moisture between the Cable Clamp and the Post insulating the connection.
        StudeRich
        Second Generation Stude Driver,
        Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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        • #5
          A voltage drop test across the battery terminal connection while trying to start can be VERY productive.

          Comment


          • #6
            What Rich and Dan said! Also, if the solenoid doesn't even click, and it should click loudly, the problem may be in the ignition switch itself. Or the neutral safety switch, if the car is an automatic. Soggy and sagged transmission mounts can cause the transmission to go into "park" before the column lever has fully hit the "park" detent, and before the neutral safety switch gets closed in the park position. I have a Wagonaire sitting in the yard with this exact issue.
            Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

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            • #7
              Thanks guys. The solenoid doesn't click. Transmission has recently been rebuilt so I'm sure we would have noticed bad mounts...could be a bad neutral safety switch itself? Ignition switch is a possibility, I agree. My Champ uses the same solenoid I believe so I'm going to do a "switch-a -roo" to see what that tells me...any reason I shouldn't try that?...going to switch batteries as an additional test.
              Lou Van Anne
              62 Champ
              64 R2 GT Hawk
              79 Avanti II

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Lou Van Anne View Post
                ..any reason I shouldn't try that?...
                As long as you have the time and energy, try all the suggestions. Of course, if you organize the sequence from least effort to most...it could save time, effort, frustration and stress.
                John Clary
                Greer, SC

                SDC member since 1975

                Comment


                • #9
                  Start by verifying that when you turn the ignition switch to 'start' a circuit is completed. Light bulb and a couple of wires will do this.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by TWChamp View Post
                    Test and diagnose before replacing parts.
                    The best advice ever!

                    Always troubleshoot to determine the real/actual problem before replacing parts and potentially causing a second problem which could mask the first problem.

                    A simple test light will tell you if you have ignition switch power to the solenoid and a simple jumper wire can tell you if the solenoid is good.

                    Take the jumper wire (20 gauge hook up wire with some alligator clips on the end) and jump the small terminal on the solenoid (the one that comes from the ignition switch) to either hot or ground, one at a time. It the starter turns over, then the problem is up stream in the ignition switch or the wiring, or neutral safety switch.

                    If the starter does not turn over, then the problem is downstream, either in the solenoid itself or the battery terminals, or the battery cables, or the battery.
                    Last edited by RadioRoy; 08-05-2016, 11:11 AM.
                    RadioRoy, specializing in AM/FM conversions with auxiliary inputs for iPod/satellite/CD player. In the old car radio business since 1985.

                    17A-S2 - 50 Commander convertible
                    10G-C1 - 51 Champion starlight coupe
                    10G-Q4 - 51 Champion business coupe
                    4H-K5 - 53 Commander starliner hardtop
                    5H-D5 - 54 Commander Conestoga wagon
                    56B-D4 - 56 Commander station wagon
                    60V-L6 - 60 Lark convertible

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                    • #11
                      Switched batteries from the Hawk to the Champ...battery on the Hawk appears not to be the problem...started the Champ on the first try...gonna switch solenoids next. (Hey this may end up being a really good excuse you can use on the wife when you want to get another Studebaker!)
                      Originally posted by Lou Van Anne View Post
                      Thanks guys. The solenoid doesn't click. Transmission has recently been rebuilt so I'm sure we would have noticed bad mounts...could be a bad neutral safety switch itself? Ignition switch is a possibility, I agree. My Champ uses the same solenoid I believe so I'm going to do a "switch-a -roo" to see what that tells me...any reason I shouldn't try that?...going to switch batteries as an additional test.
                      Lou Van Anne
                      62 Champ
                      64 R2 GT Hawk
                      79 Avanti II

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Yup, it must be the solenoid. I put the suspected bad one from the Hawk on the Champ and BINGO....it didn't work.
                        Originally posted by Lou Van Anne View Post
                        Switched batteries from the Hawk to the Champ...battery on the Hawk appears not to be the problem...started the Champ on the first try...gonna switch solenoids next. (Hey this may end up being a really good excuse you can use on the wife when you want to get another Studebaker!)
                        Lou Van Anne
                        62 Champ
                        64 R2 GT Hawk
                        79 Avanti II

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Good work, it would have been more Fun however to put the known GOOD Solenoid from the Champ on the Hawk !
                          StudeRich
                          Second Generation Stude Driver,
                          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Ya, maybe. I bought a new one, will install in the morning when the garage cools off...may have to eat crow...we will see.
                            Originally posted by StudeRich View Post
                            Good work, it would have been more Fun however to put the known GOOD Solenoid from the Champ on the Hawk !
                            Lou Van Anne
                            62 Champ
                            64 R2 GT Hawk
                            79 Avanti II

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              No crow to eat. She is up and running again. Not bad for a guy who has an aversion to turning wrenches and is mechanically challenged....rather proud of myself!
                              Originally posted by Lou Van Anne View Post
                              Ya, maybe. I bought a new one, will install in the morning when the garage cools off...may have to eat crow...we will see.
                              Lou Van Anne
                              62 Champ
                              64 R2 GT Hawk
                              79 Avanti II

                              Comment

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