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Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-13-2007, 7:31 AM Reply   
Here's the deal. Out on the lake this weekend and everything is going great. We come back to the dock and went to turn off the boat. Turn key and nothing, pull bat cable and still nothing. Had to pull the starter coil plug in order to get the engine to turn off. Boat had been killed and started on the water all day no problems. Thought we might have something wrong with the ignition switch so we replaced it but we kept finding new problems every time we reconnected everything, such as engine turning over when you turn the key just to the acc position, starter staying engaged even after engine running, got to the point as soon as you touched the bat cable to the post the engine was turning over (at this point the ignition switch was not even connected). We have made several lake trips this year and we have only had one other mechanical problem, we had the starter burn up so it was rebuilt (2nd time in two years for this)so we think we have an electrical problem somewhere but we have not done anything repair wise which would bring about a lot of rewiring. Just basic stuff like oil, plugs, batt, changes nothing more. Any advice on this issue. Boat is a 85 Challenger (Bayliner) d-drive.

Thanks to anyone who can give me some insight. All ready know the best advice, take to a mechanic, but hate to lose the last few weeks I have left before we pull everything out waiting on it at the shop.
Old     (1boarder_kevin)      Join Date: Mar 2007       08-13-2007, 7:46 AM Reply   
If it won't cut off and it is trying to start in ACC, try changing your ignition switch. It might be corroded or crossed up some how. It could of been hanging up and hurting the starter in the past as well. Just a random guess, but I imagine it wouldn't be too expensive to change.
Old     (denverd1)      Join Date: May 2004       08-13-2007, 9:00 AM Reply   
starter solenoid. between your battery and starter. usually at the rear of the engine. follow the starter wire.
Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-13-2007, 9:38 AM Reply   
Yeah, we changed out the ignition switch and actually things got worse, better, then the same.

You might be right Nacho that wire could have rubbed up against something and is getting grounded somewhere because we did change out the solenoid when we rebuilt the starter. I will see about checking it out.
Old     (forenku)      Join Date: May 2007       08-13-2007, 9:47 AM Reply   
I know this sounds really stupid, but it happened to me. Make sure the boat is in neutral. Whenever this happens to me, I take the throttle from what I thought was neutral and put it in gear and back to neutral. It will start everytime. For some reason it's in the neutral position, but it's not in neutral and when I used to turn the key nothing would happen. Hope this is all it is.
Old     (lrgbas)      Join Date: Apr 2007       08-13-2007, 11:27 AM Reply   
We just had a like problem, with motor running if i turned on the Nav. lights the motor would not shut off(using the key) I would have to turn off the Nav. light and the motor would turn off, if motor off key off and turn on Nav. light the whole dash will energize. Weird, dealer fixed said the ground wire came off the Nav. light switch. So maybe this will give you some where to look??
Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-13-2007, 2:47 PM Reply   
The boat has a safety switch that will not allow anything to happen if in gear but something might have backed off allowing slack in the positioner. Cant hurt to try.

Yeah something has got to be grounded but I don't know where. Sometimes it would start fine and run without problems until you went to kill it and then it would not stop running. Somethings lose but I don't know where because all the panel instruments are off. Nothing else running when we go to start the boat but again these are at least some things to look at so I can rule out what it is not when I finally break down and take to in so a marina can break it off in me.
Old     (olskooltige)      Join Date: Mar 2007       08-13-2007, 3:24 PM Reply   
Sounds like the new switch was installed incorrectly.
Old     (ccraftskierfan)      Join Date: Mar 2004       08-13-2007, 7:05 PM Reply   
If you have a safety lanyard shut down switch, it may be defective.
Old     (wakekidd263)      Join Date: Jul 2006       08-13-2007, 11:12 PM Reply   
starter solenoid. my 1989 american skier was doing all that exact same things and we replaced the 10$ part and now it works fine
Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-14-2007, 7:05 AM Reply   
three position switch I/B/S. All went back just the way they came off, but we thought that to and changed them over and still had same problems.

We pulled and reattached the lanyard line just to make sure it was making good connection but did not replace it. Might be something else to put on the list for when I go down this weekend to take a better look at it.

We replaced the solenoid when we put in the alternator, but it might either be faulty or when we grounded something out it might have shorted it out somehow. Might take a new one and just replace it to see what happens especially if I find a loose wire in there anywhere.
Old     (mobv)      Join Date: Jun 2002       08-14-2007, 10:06 AM Reply   
It is either the starter solonid or the ingition switch wiring.
Old     (bob)      Join Date: Feb 2001       08-15-2007, 1:53 AM Reply   
While converting to a higher capacity alternator I found a similar problem where the replacement alternator somehow kept power going to the ignition coil. I dont recall exactly how but know as it was disconcerting when a boat is running on the hose and you cant 'just turn it off'. It is a possibility since you mention "we put in the alternator".

(Message edited by bob on August 15, 2007)
Old     (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       08-15-2007, 6:04 PM Reply   
If I understand correctly, the problem was NOT that the boat wouldn't start. The problem is that the boat would not turn off!

It wouldn't be the safety lanyard, neutral switch, throttle position, etc.

My first guess would have been the ignition switch but assuming the new one was installed correctly the only other thing would be the starter relay, often referred to as the "starter solenoid".

If the starter relay jammed in the closed position then it could do that. Thing is that I would expect it to be constantly wanting the engage the starter, which should have made a real racket.

The reason that the boat would continue to run with the starter relay stuck, even with the switch off, is that you probably have a ballast resistor on the coil with a starter relay bypass. When the relay is closed it will bypass the resistor with power directly from the battery.

I suppose it is possible that the relay was originally only half stuck, enough to energize the resistor bypass but not enough to activate the starter.
Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-16-2007, 6:55 AM Reply   
All the posts are starting to confirm what I have been thinking which is something is grounded or shorted out causing the boat to be "energized." With everything hooked up you could start the engine, started would disengage like it was supposed to but the boat would not turn off unless you pulled the coil wire.

Then things got progressively worse. As you hit the key the starter would stay engaged which required you to pull the battery wire to disengage it along with coil wire to kill boat.

Then came the situation as soon as you put the battery cable to the post the starter was engaging turning over the engine. It did not matter if the key was on or even if the switch was hooked up.

We are going to try and trace as much of the ignition wires as we can along with starter wires and solenoid and solenoid wires the next time I can get to the lake house.

Hate paying big bucks when it "might be something simple." My luck it never is.

Thanks and keep the ideas coming.
Old     (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       08-16-2007, 2:19 PM Reply   
I am not sure that I am understanding the sequence of events. Did this problem just start happening out of the blue, or did it happen the first time you took the boat out after replacing the starter and relay/solenoid?

There are several different versions of the starter relay and if you got the wrong one you could have things messed up and causing some of these problems.

Here is my thought: The starter relay/solenoid has two large posts that the battery and starter cables attach to. It will also have one or two small posts that small wires attach to. One of these connects to the ignition switch. It is the function of the second small terminal (if it has one) that is in question.

One common relay arrangment is that one terminal connects to the actuator of the relay, and the "ground" connection is made through the frame. The second small terminal connects the battery to the ignition coil, bypassing the ballast resistor. This is fairly common on boats.

Another "two tereminal" arrangement is that both terminals connect to the actuator coil, one to each end, and the frame of the relay does not need to be connected to ground. If you connected this style of relay to a circuit that was expecting a ballast resistor bypass type relay then strange things would occur.

In any event, I can assure you that the starter relay is NOT doing what it is supposed to. Repalce it, and make sure it is the correct type for your application.

Old     (indian015)      Join Date: Feb 2006       08-16-2007, 2:29 PM Reply   
This is an "out of the blue" thing. The starter went out about a month before this started happening. We had it rebuilt and replaced it, along with solenoid, ran the rest of the weekend no problems. Made two other lake trips no problems and half way through the 3 trip all this crap started happening. It is a Ford 351 and we pulled all the numbers off the original and they corresponded to any you get at the auto dealers- so said the mechanic at the marina.
Old     (wakeskate1980)      Join Date: Sep 2007       09-13-2007, 10:42 AM Reply   


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