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KVH
09-01-2012, 09:31 PM
I thought my battery died, or that my starter was shot (the latter thought almost always being wrong), but it turned out that I just had loose battery cables. I've never had that issue with any other car. Are TRs more sensitive to connection issues?

TR3driver
09-01-2012, 09:43 PM
No more so than any other 50 year old car!

KVH
09-01-2012, 10:08 PM
Right. At least one rule seems to apply with these great old cars--when something goes wrong it's usually something simple.

poolboy
09-01-2012, 10:16 PM
That's because everything on 50 year old cars is simple..relatively speaking.
It's us that complicate things

Geo Hahn
09-01-2012, 10:23 PM
I actually leave the ground post loose enough that I can pull it off in an emergency -- never had a problem with that but I do keep the post and clamp shiny clean.

When I saw the subject line I was ready to put my pants back on and hit the road.

KVH
09-01-2012, 11:10 PM
I was stuck for awhile. Not a good feeling.

Thanks Geo. I actually feel lucky knowing I've got friends like you who can fix anything anywhere anytime. And who'd come running.

I'd do the same for you. Except you'd prove the exception to the rule. No way it would be something simple. Take care-and I'm cleaning those posts right now.

Mickey Richaud
09-02-2012, 05:04 AM
When I saw the subject line I was ready to put my pants back on and hit the road.

Gee, Geo - thanks for that visual! :devilgrin:

Andrew Mace
09-02-2012, 08:37 AM
I actually leave the ground post loose enough that I can pull it off in an emergency -- never had a problem with that but I do keep the post and clamp shiny clean.Ah, so I'm not the only one who does this! :laugh:

Don Elliott
09-02-2012, 11:43 AM
I was driving home from a TRA event many years ago through south-western New Jersey. It was a nice qiuet sunny morning and motoring was smooth on this rural road - almost all the way to the top of a long hill. The engine lost its electrical power. I coasted slower and slower till I reached the crest of the hill and pulled over into some grassy area so I could be seen by cars approaching from both directions.

The wire clip on the black/white wire on the low voltage side of the coil had failed and the wire was sticking up. It took about 5 minutes to strip back some insulation, wrap in under the hex head nut that holds it on my 1958 TR3A and then I was back on the road again.

Another very simple fix.

71MKIV
09-03-2012, 08:17 PM
Which is why at the very least I carry my leatherman tool for just such situations

tdskip
09-03-2012, 11:57 PM
Glad you got home OK. Trying to the the image from Geo out of my head :-)

KVH
09-04-2012, 12:28 PM
Well, now I'm not sure it was just those cables. I cleaned them and put them back on, and the car started right up. But last evening when I turned the key, there was a slight pause and hesitation, like it was dead. Then it suddenly started again.

Connections at the ammeter and solenoid are good.

I can think of three things: a) cables still not clean, b)dead spot on starter; c) faulty ignition switch.

Have I hit the major culprits?

Geo Hahn
09-04-2012, 02:19 PM
Could of course be a poor connection at the ignition switch or starter. If it is at the starter the connection may get noticeably hot. You might give the igntion switch connections a wiggle to see if they are tight.

When you get the failure to launch -- do you hear the solenoid click?

TR3driver
09-04-2012, 04:15 PM
I can think of three things: a) cables still not clean, b)dead spot on starter; c) faulty ignition switch.

Have I hit the major culprits?

I have also seen bad solenoids & batteries act that way. Also don't forget the ground strap from the engine to the frame.

I don't recall offhand if a TR4A is wired the same way, but on a TR3, the connection between the battery ground cable and the body is a common trouble point, especially on restored cars. You have to have a good, clean, metal-to-metal connection and many people are loathe to cut through their expensive paint job. One solution is to put a big 'star' type lockwasher between the cable end and firewall, so the teeth of the star can cut through the paint and make connection.

3798j
09-04-2012, 07:17 PM
I don't recall offhand if a TR4A is wired the same way, but on a TR3, the connection between the battery ground cable and the body is a common trouble point, especially on restored cars. You have to have a good, clean, metal-to-metal connection and many people are loathe to cut through their expensive paint job. One solution is to put a big 'star' type lockwasher between the cable end and firewall, so the teeth of the star can cut through the paint and make connection.

This was exactly my problem (for more months than I'd like to admit). A star washer took care of the "dead key turn" for good.