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Old 10-27-2012, 01:59 PM   #309
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Funny thing about all this when I first got the motor in and all hooked up it actually turned over. It spit gas out of the carb. I had a backyard mechanic look at it and he turned the motor by hand, turned the distrib 180 degrees, and it still turned over (not spitting the gas) but the battery quickly died. I had to stop for a bit. Weeks later I came back out to it with jumpers, hooked them up, and all I got was one click. I replaced the relay and starter and now I'm getting rapid fire clicking but the motor doesn't move. It isn't seized because I can turn it by hand (with a wrench). The is clicking but not engaging. Flywheel clearance to the starter is right on so it isn't that.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:04 PM   #310
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I agree with you guys, it really sounds like a low voltage issue but I don't know what more I can do aside from hooking up 220V right to the battery...lol. What I'm saying is, I've jumped it all I can. Even with the donor vehicle running the starter just clicks. That's nuts! That should do it.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:16 PM   #311
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I have the donor vehicle running right now. It has been for about 10 minutes now. Still nothing but clicking. I am missing something, I just know it. It's so damn old that I can't tell what wires are for what.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:18 PM   #312
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Hey RonS

I have a 1989 Southwind with John Deere/Oskosh chassis and a Ford 460. Had exactly this problem, I think. After starting normally for 20+ years then sitting about a month, I went to start the motor and here's what happened: ignition key in, twist to ACC on, all normal dash warning lights come on as usual, I twist the key to START and all dash lights go out - completely dead . At first there were multiple "clicks" from the starter solenoid before everything went dead but then after a couple "resets", not even that happened before it went dark. After much trial and error I did discover that giggling the gear shift lever &/or moving it to N and giggling sometimes resulted in a normal START, but more often not... I did quite a few things before I hit upon the real culprit including: checked chassis and coach battery conditions, cleaned all battery terminals and cable connectors, installed a battery ground cable directly from the starter to the NEG terminal of the chassis battery and checked for good current at the latching chassis & coach disconnect solenoids (both were very strong). Resetting the master disconnect power switches to off then back on restored power in the ACC position allowing another attempt but the result was often the same...

Coincidently, the dash AC Fan, windshield wipers and dash radio all also stopped working, but the coach side was full up & normal - unaffected Found a 300+ MB shop manual for my JD year & model online and was able to trace the AC & windshield wipers electrical wiring diagram thru the ignition switch ... Can you say ignition switch? Some WD40 sprayed right on the ignition switch seemed to help. At this point 3 possible causes: faulty mechanical ignition cylinder (not), faulty electrical ignition switch (likely) or a faulty neutral switch (possible). Replaced the electrical ignition switch and magically everything fixed, including the AC, windshield wipers and radio - not to mention the starting issue.

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Old 10-27-2012, 02:29 PM   #313
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Originally Posted by VP
Hey RonS

I have a 1998 Southwind with John Deere/Oskosh chassis and a Ford 460. Had exactly this problem, I think. After starting normally for 20+ years then sitting about a month, I went to start the motor and here's what happened: ignition key in, twist to ACC on, all normal dash warning lights come on as usual, I twist the key to START and all dash lights go out - completely dead . At first there was a single "click" from the starter solenoid before everything went dead but then after a couple "resets", not even that happened before it went dark. After much trial and error I did discover that giggling the gear shift lever &/or moving it to N and giggling sometimes resulted in a normal START, but more often not... I did quite a few things before I hit upon the real culprit including: checked chassis and coach battery conditions, cleaned all battery terminals and cable connectors, installed a battery ground cable directly from the starter to the NEG terminal of the chassis battery and checked for good current at the latching chassis & coach disconnect solenoids (both were very strong). Resetting the master disconnect power switches to off then back on restored power in the ACC position allowing another attempt but the result was often the same...

Coincidently, the dash AC Fan, windshield wipers and dash radio all also stopped working, but the coach side was full up & normal - unaffected Found a 300+ MB shop manual for my JD year & model online and was able to trace the AC & windshield wipers electrical wiring diagram thru the ignition switch ... Can you say ignition switch? At this point 3 possible causes: faulty mechanical ignition cylinder (not), faulty electrical ignition switch (likely) or a faulty neutral switch (possible). Replaced the electrical ignition switch and magically everything fixed, including the AC, windshield wipers and radio - not to mention the starting issue.

VP
All good stuff! I tried jiggling the shifter. Being almost 47 I recall some of the older cars having this issue. Either a good smack to the shifter into park, or dropping it into neutral used to do the trick. I tried it about 30 minutes ago but it didn't work. I can't imagine why the ignition would be bad. It was working fine prior to the motor replacement.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:37 PM   #314
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My van has been charging the RV for nearly 30 minutes now. The starter clicks are now louder and faster than ever but still not engaging.
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:42 PM   #315
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No need to smack shifter to get it into N, just rotate the ignition switch cylinder to ON. The rod that goes from the mechanical ignition cylinder to the electrical ignition switch is rather finicky about adjustment. Mine was working perfect as far as the starter was concerned (though the wipers and AC had stopped a few months earlier). then the starter issue cropped up suddenly as I described. I'll check back tonight as I'm off to work... From what you described, I really do think you have a Electrical Ignition Switch or Neutral Safety Switch problem. Later...
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Old 10-27-2012, 02:50 PM   #316
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Where is the neutral safety switch? If that were bad what would it do, or not do? This is to anyone.
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Old 10-27-2012, 05:06 PM   #317
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Ok, I found it on the steering column. I know that it allows you to start the RV only in neutral and park and won't allow anything to happen in any gear. But if I'm getting the starter to click in park/neutral doesn't that mean the switch is working?
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Old 10-27-2012, 05:06 PM   #318
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Oh, I bought one anyway. I'll replace it tomorrow. It was cheap enough to rule it out.
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Old 10-27-2012, 07:52 PM   #319
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never pulled one out the side door but did pull one out the front of a 1985 southwind not a good idea, the only reason i did it that way was we were scrapping the old girl.
coming out the front is destructive to the coach and doesn't clear well at all,
my favorite way to change engines is to pull the transmission and then set the engine out,that way i can just set the engine on the mounts and then mate the transmission to the engine, alot of times trying to set the engine on the mounts and line up with the transmission both at the same time can be a pain.
being i usually work by my self so it is easier for me this way and i can replace the front transmission seal while there.
good luck
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:11 PM   #320
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It sounds like you are getting low voltage. Try cleaning the bat terminals. Make sure the bat has over 12+ volts, maybe charge or replace bat. If voltage is good, turn key on and try to start by jumping across the starter silinoide with a players or wire. Clicking starter means low voltage. Just saying
I have not read this entire thread, but the above is what I would do... Short across the starter terminals with a screw driver.. Or if you wish they make a simple hand held push button with heavy alligator clips to do the same thing. You said you have good power at the starter,, this will bypass everything in the coach, to energize the starter.. Done it bunches of times.
Jet engine mech huh ? I was an A&P on twin engine turbo props for several years...
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:47 PM   #321
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I never touched props before. I worked on the C-141 at McGuire in Jersey for 7.5 years. I enjoyed that plane but it didn't do well for me towards experience for promotion. Every time I tested they asked me about aircraft I never looked at, let alone worked on. The 141 is a serious workhorse. I'd fly anywhere in the world on that plane. Getting back to the RV, I'll try that jumper trick tomorrow. If there IS a tomorrow with this "super storm" coming. I may not have an RV to work on.
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Old 10-27-2012, 08:57 PM   #322
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I have tried to jump some vehicles with a low battery, and didn't seem to do much. Problem was the positive or negative battery cable not making a good connection. They may look clean as new, but there can be corrosion on the inside causing the resistance. Clean the terminals and it may jump through its arss to start. You could have a dead cell in the starting battery and it will throw the same symptoms. Also resistance in the solenoid can cause the same problems. Me an monkey both think so!
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