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9Problems starting JH series motors on J/42

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  • wstellin
    Nov 5, 2007
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      Over the past two years we have had increasing intermitent problems
      starting the engine after hours of sailing and the starting battery
      a little low on voltage. After much work I think I have identified
      the problem as being in the neutral safety switch in the
      shift/throttle lever. Often after hours of sailing with out the
      engine running, I would turn the starter key and nothing would
      happen except the lights on the panel dim a bit. I took every
      electrical connection between the instrument panel and the starter
      apart, cleaned them and put them back. What I found in the process
      is that the wire gauge from the neutral safety switch to the key
      starter switch is smaller than the wire gauge in the extenstion
      harness that connects the panel with the starter. I think there was
      some voltage drop and probably a sticking neutral safety switch
      which combined at times to make it hard to engage the starter. If I
      jiggled the shift lever when in neutral while turning the key it
      always started, but it was always a worry. Now, to fix the problem,
      I have disconnected the neutral safety switch so the only wire from
      the key, goes directly to the magnetic switch on the starter. This
      eliminates about 8 feet of wire which was smaller than it should
      have been and of course eliminates the possibility of a sticking
      neutral safety switch.
      The engine will start in gear and of course in neutral. Getting at
      the problem switch is all but impossible because the hood covering
      the pedestal has four frozen screws holding it on as well as the
      shift handle frozen to its spindle. I will have to cut both away to
      get at the inside of the shift mechanism.(Thanks TPI for not using
      TefGel on the dissimilar metals.) Probably, I will never fix the
      switch because replacing everything I have to destroy to get at the
      switch, will cost a fortune. I am all but sure I have solved the
      problem but only time will tell.
      Has anyone had a similar problem.
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