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911 doesn't start

Hi folks,
Well, I got my old girl (1970 911T) out today to take advantage of the great weather. She started up fine this morning and I let her warm up for about 10 minutes. I got a phone call and walked outside and turned her off. About 1 hour later, I walked back out to take my drive and nothing. I turned the key, the lights worked, the radio worked, etc. She just wouldn't start. When I say she wouldn't start, I mean nothing happens when I turn the key. No noise what so ever. The key turns, the "red" light located on the tach illuminates, the gauges move, but the car just sits there.

I removed the batteries, checked the charge, which was down to about 60%. I charged both batteries, reinstalled them, tried to crank the car. Nothing. I know my ground cable(transmission to body) was old, so I jacked the car up and replaced the ground cable. Nothing.

My mechanic put in a new starter several weeks ago while I was having some other issues sorted. Could this be the cause? Could it be something as simple as a fuse? I'm at a loss on this one.

I'm going to go out and try to hit the starter a couple of times w/ a hammer. We'll see if that works and I'll get back here to report the progress.

TIA,
Brent
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:11 PM
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Pelican Technical Article: Starter System Troubleshooting

I'm guessing the signal wire on the starter relay. but diagnosis will need to be made.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:32 PM
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This happened to me last summer one time. Car would not start while on a trip to our local mountains. After a short stop to buy some apples...nothing. But a quick push start and I got home no problem. I raised the rear of the car, put on jackstands and cleaned and removed all wired of many years of nasty crud. (used contact cleaner) Then before I put the car down I smacked the starter with a small hammer several times and it started right up! Been working great for almost a year and I have gone on several trips! Try it! Nick
Old 05-10-2012, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Triesch View Post
This happened to me last summer one time. Car would not start while on a trip to our local mountains. After a short stop to buy some apples...nothing. But a quick push start and I got home no problem. I raised the rear of the car, put on jackstands and cleaned and removed all wired of many years of nasty crud. (used contact cleaner) Then before I put the car down I smacked the starter with a small hammer several times and it started right up! Been working great for almost a year and I have gone on several trips! Try it! Nick
Ah the ol' hit-the-starter-with-a-hammer trick. A classic remedy in old VW bug circles. (right 67flat4 ...?)
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:28 PM
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I'm not sure if the ignition switch problem so common to many 911s extends back to 1970 but if so the switch can fail to engage the start contacts. If you pay close attention you may notice the lack of a spring return as you turn clock wise to the start position. It's common to replace the electrical portion of the ignition switch. I have had good results by simply cleaning the tumblers of the ignition switch with WD-40 you may want to try this since it is so easy.
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Old 05-10-2012, 06:22 PM
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Hi,
Well, I tried the ole hammer trick. Nothing. Just for $hits & giggles, I rolled the car down a hill, popped the clutch, and she fired right up. I disconnected the grounds from the batteries, jacked the car up, disconnected the ignition wire and hooked up testing light (couldn't find my ohm meter) and reconnected the batt-grounds. Turned the ignition to start, the light came on. My question, is this a way to test the ignition wire? I know there juice going to the testing light, but could that mean there's only enough juice to light the bulb but not start the car?

I've been thinking of up-grading to a hi-torque start. I've heard they're lighter, in addition, to providing more torque. I know our host sells starters, but I didn't see one for 1970. Would the later years work fine? Could anyone recommend a hi-torque starter for my car?

Thanks,
Brent

PS, I was talking to some today from work and they mentioned something about the starter relay. They were telling me the relay could cause some issues if it's old. Honestly, I don't know where the starter relay is located on my car. Can anyone post the relay's location?
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Last edited by JV44HeinzBar; 05-11-2012 at 10:28 AM..
Old 05-11-2012, 09:59 AM
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not sure on the post above? Did you check for power to the ignition or starter? I would first clean the contacts at the starter. reconnect. if not fixed, pull the small wire off the starter grab a buddy to turn the key and see if there is power at the wire with the ignition switch in the start position.
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 67flat4 View Post
not sure on the post above? Did you check for power to the ignition or starter? I would first clean the contacts at the starter. reconnect. if not fixed, pull the small wire off the starter grab a buddy to turn the key and see if there is power at the wire with the ignition switch in the start position.
Hi,
I disconnected the wire leading to the starter/solenoid and hooked the testing light up to the wire. I turned the key to the start postion and the light illuminated. So, there was juice going through the starter/solenoid. Question is, was there enough juice to illuminate the light but not enough to start the car?

Sincerely,
Brent
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:32 AM
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Just something I did once that solved this condition. I replaced the battery ground cable. Looked great outside; inside was corroded.
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:36 AM
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once you locate your meter check the voltage a bulb can't show you any voltage drop. I suspect it's good and a starter would be needed. sounds as if you're ready to upgrade now would be a good time.
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:49 AM
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Hi,
I found solenoids for this starter. Reading about the trouble replacing the complete starter, I'm curious about just replacing the solenoid? I doubt that I'll do it, as the hi-torque starter seems to be the way to go, but has anyone just replaced the solenoid?

TIA,
Brent
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Old 05-11-2012, 06:18 PM
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Hi all,
Well, after some troubleshooting, I found the problem. It was as simple as cleaning a connecter in the engine bay. It appears as a 14 pin connector found on the left hand side of the engine. This connector was slightly tarnished which I cleaned w/ a simple solution of baking soda & water. After drying it, I put some dielectrical grease on the points. Viola!! She fired right up.

I will say that I tested the batteries, battery cables, connecting wires on the starter/solenoid, the ignition wire leading to the starter, pulled the iginition module (used an offset screwdriver to get to that little monster) under the dash, and replaced the old ground strap. The point of the story is don't follow my lead, but check all your connections first

I'm guessing some of the corrosion occurred while I had the engine out of the car during an engine rebuild.

Anyhow, thanks for all the tips gents.

Brent
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1971 911 T Targa Signal Yellow (summer joy)
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:19 AM
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