Engine won't crank - did I short something? - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 03, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Newtown, PA
Posts: 2

This will be a long post - but I want to give you some background as to what is going on and what I have done to check it.

I recently replaced my engine wiring harness on my 68 RS/SS with a kit from Classic Industries. The system wouldn't charge, and (with the help of a good electrical guy) I discovered that the harness switched the field and output wires from the alternator to the regulator (it was incorrectly wired). Reversing these, the system seemed to work great.

However, and this is where my problem starts, the next day, I was working on fixing a bad ground on a parking lamp, and left the ignition key in the "on" position overnight. It appeared to only drain the battery, so I charged it, started it up, and it seemed to run great.

When I went to start it the next day, there was nothing.

I appear to have a short - the interior courtesy lamps stay on continually, the tach seems to be registering 250 RPM with the engine off, and or course, the engine won't run.

I charged the battery up to 13 Volts, and let it sit - it drained down to 8 Volts overnight. When I put a digital volt meter across the battery terminals, I get 850 milliamps. When I pull off the negative terminal and put the voltmeter from the negative terminal to positive post, there is zero amps. Putting the meter in series between the negative terminal and negative post, I show 850 milliamps.

The last bit of information that I can offer is that if I disconnect the circuit charge lead which goes to the junction block near the battery, the courtesy lights go off.

So, after all that, can anybody give me a clue what to do? Do I have a short in the wiring, or did I ruin the ignition switch by leaving it on, or is it unrelated.

Also, can anyone confirm that the circuit charge lead does in fact go to the junction block, and then there is a lead to the positive terminal of the battery (both my assembly book, and the wiring diagram are unclear).

Thanks in advance for your help.

Ragtop 68 RS/SS is offline  
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 03, 01:07 PM
Senior Tech
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Austin, TX, USA
Posts: 5,277

Check the park neutral switch. You should have two wires connected to the starter (maybe three). One is the "big red snake" (ol TV repairman joke), the other is the starter engage wire. This engage wire comes from the fuse ignition switch and travels through the Park Neutral switch among other things. You'll have to get your schematic out and trace it through from one end to the other. Good thing about painless is they label their wires quite good. Now just see if their wires make a complete circuit by following the schematic.


68 Coupe, 350 w/ Edelbrock Performer RPM heads, cam, intake, 700R4, Dave's small body HEI
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