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Old 01-16-2014, 11:00 PM   #1
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Negative wires to all gauges burned

Not
a great situation but we recently replaced my 5.7 1975 engine and did not modifiy any wires except one wire that runs from the positive post to the alternator. This wire was very corroded and actually was showing signs that it was burned or corroded through.
New starter installed with original external solinoid
When we turned the battery on the ignition to start all ground wires to my gauges burnt up
Now we are stumped because the Tollycraft never had any issues prior to me pulling the engine Very sad after all the work.
Could a bad alternator or voltage regulator cause a massive fault like this?
Thanks
We have looked at all battery wires solinoid and starter wires and they look correct
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:36 PM   #2
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All ground wires burnt

Any ideas on how all ground wires to my gauges on my helm could burn after we replaced my 350 engine
Would a bad alternator or regulator be suspect?
Battery wires all look correct
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:50 PM   #3
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In order for you to actually burn up wires it takes a hell of allot of current.

Almost guaranteed, what you did is to apply 12 volts, directly coupled to ground through the wires. You'll eventually figure it out, but you hooked up those wires to 12 volts somewhere.
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:03 AM   #4
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[QUOTE="ksanders;206406"]In order for you to actually burn up wires it takes a hell of allot of current. Almost guaranteed, what you did is to apply 12 volts, directly coupled to ground through the wires. You'll eventually figure it out, but you hooked up those wires to 12 volts somewhere.[/QUOTE
The starter solinoid and alternator wires were all removed and pictures taken but like I posted I did replace a broken or burned alternator charging wire We disconnected the alternator and regulator and it looks like the issue is in that area
I was thinking the bolt on the alternator may have twisted direct shorting the alternator to positive charge and passing the positive true the block
Lost really and such a shame because lots of nice items may be fried now
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:07 AM   #5
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Reversed polarity? With key off and battery switch on there should be no power to gauges. Since the ground side is burned it shows high current coming from ground. My educated guess at this point.

Tom
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:20 AM   #6
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[QUOTE="tpbrady;206411"]Reversed polarity? With key off and battery switch on there should be no power to gauges. Since the ground side is burned it shows high current coming from ground. My educated guess at this point. Tom[/QUOTE
I'm digging to find out how the positive power can go through the ground form the engine
To the gauges
Im going digging again tomorrow First thing will be getting the alternator tested Long shot
Thanks
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:42 AM   #7
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Did your new engine get grounded after replacing it?
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:58 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jstauffer View Post
Did your new engine get grounded after replacing it?
Can you clarify It has all grounds connected to the bell housing
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Old 01-17-2014, 05:38 AM   #9
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Whatever the initial fault, your ground wire dimensions are under-sized: at least one needs to be big enough to carry all return current
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Old 01-17-2014, 06:34 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aquabelle View Post
Whatever the initial fault, your ground wire dimensions are under-sized: at least one needs to be big enough to carry all return current
Not if accidently hooked to the positive side ..... no telling WHAT is carrying what.

Many grounds are just jumpered in the gauge area....so small is sometimes hooked to large....granted not the best but common practice.
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Old 01-17-2014, 07:33 AM   #11
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Your ground wires burned because too much current was passing through them. Not being there and not having done the work, it's impossible to say why.

You will have to go back and check your work or have someone check it for you. Something is connected wrong.

Repair 101 - If it worked before you did some work on it and it doesn't work after, it's probably something you did.
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Old 01-17-2014, 09:31 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WesK View Post
Your ground wires burned because too much current was passing through them. Not being there and not having done the work, it's impossible to say why. You will have to go back and check your work or have someone check it for you. Something is connected wrong. Repair 101 - If it worked before you did some work on it and it doesn't work after, it's probably something you did.
I do understand that but I was hoping for a response that it could be the solenoid connections or something in the alternator
They burned because I've hook up or crimped a positive wire and it's going to ground
I'm guessing the instrument ground wires burned is because they were the smaller ones
I do know it was done by me. I'm thinking solenoid because that goes back to the ignition switch which powers the gauges when selected on
Thanks
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Old 01-17-2014, 09:57 AM   #13
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Did the gauge wires burn when the ignition switch was just turned to the on position or when it was turned to the start position? It would seem unlikely that by the switch just being in the on position there would be enough current supply capability in the positive supply wires to allow all gauge ground wires to burn up. However, if they burned up when in the start position there would then indeed be enough current capability via the positive starter cable. That is why I thought maybe the engine (bell housing) wires did not get connected.
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:35 AM   #14
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Interesting We did connect the grounds to the bell housing but I think you are turning me towards the wire that goes from the ignition switch to the solenoid
I can't see any other way for the current to get to the panel other then via the switch and I can only see one positive of the starter solenoid
I'll post back when I find it
Thanks
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:53 AM   #15
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[QUOTE="yoeman;206488"]Interesting We did connect the grounds to the bell housing but I think you are turning me towards the wire that goes from the ignition switch to the solenoid I can't see any other way for the current to get to the panel other then via the switch and I can only see one positive of the starter solenoid I'll post back when I find it Thanks[/QUOTE
Thanks for all the help
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Old 01-17-2014, 02:36 PM   #16
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The typical alarm setup has 12V power being supplied FROM A FUSE OR BREAKER to the alarm device and then to multiple sensor switches for oil pressure, water temperature, etc. When one of those sensors is closed, like at startup with no oil pressure it completes the circuit to ground and the alarm sounds until the engine starts, builds up pressure and opens the switch/sensor.

So one theory is that the 12V source was not fused (not uncommon) and somehow 12V was connected to the wrong side of the alarm. When you switched the batteries on it supplied 12V directly to the oil pressure switch which was closed to ground and it pulled high current because the alarm wasn't in the circuit to limit it and the wire burned through.

The same thing can happen to the idiot light for the alternator. If it was wired wrong and was not fused it could burn the wire.

Make sense?

David
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Old 01-17-2014, 08:40 PM   #17
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wires

Quote:
Originally Posted by djmarchand View Post
The typical alarm setup has 12V power being supplied FROM A FUSE OR BREAKER to the alarm device and then to multiple sensor switches for oil pressure, water temperature, etc. When one of those sensors is closed, like at startup with no oil pressure it completes the circuit to ground and the alarm sounds until the engine starts, builds up pressure and opens the switch/sensor.

So one theory is that the 12V source was not fused (not uncommon) and somehow 12V was connected to the wrong side of the alarm. When you switched the batteries on it supplied 12V directly to the oil pressure switch which was closed to ground and it pulled high current because the alarm wasn't in the circuit to limit it and the wire burned through.

The same thing can happen to the idiot light for the alternator. If it was wired wrong and was not fused it could burn the wire.

Make sense?

David
I changed the alternator and voltage regulator because a marine/auto electric shop advised me that if the regulator failed to ground it could cook the small ground wires. Im not sure but it seems the replacement works and no more smoke show. Its lucky that the smaller wires cooked but the gauges didnt get fried.
Im a little concerned as the voltage is as high as 15.5 then drops back to 14 at idle. I didnt test the battery but it was on a trickle charge. Might have another issue
Thanks for the help
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Old 01-17-2014, 09:07 PM   #18
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Interesting description from the electric shop. I wonder what the failure mode was for the regulator. Because the grounds all burned, it indicates that the current originated on the ground side of the gauges, otherwise the fusing protecting the hot side of the gauges should have blown. In this case the small gauge ground wires acted like fuses. For that to happen battery voltage had to be shorted to ground in the regulator and the only path to ground from the regulator was through the gauge grounds.

Makes me want to look at a how the regulator is installed in my alternator setup since I use an external regulator. It also is prompting me to look at how the gauges are fused since I don't recall seeing any fuses on the hot side of the gauges. There should be only one since they all tied to the ignition switch.

Tom
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Old 01-20-2014, 10:32 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpbrady View Post
Interesting description from the electric shop. I wonder what the failure mode was for the regulator. Because the grounds all burned, it indicates that the current originated on the ground side of the gauges, otherwise the fusing protecting the hot side of the gauges should have blown. In this case the small gauge ground wires acted like fuses. For that to happen battery voltage had to be shorted to ground in the regulator and the only path to ground from the regulator was through the gauge grounds.

Makes me want to look at a how the regulator is installed in my alternator setup since I use an external regulator. It also is prompting me to look at how the gauges are fused since I don't recall seeing any fuses on the hot side of the gauges. There should be only one since they all tied to the ignition switch.

Tom
Ive changed the regulator and had the alt tested so installed them but now the volt meter shows 14 volt charge at low idle the bounces around 16.5 to 16 at higher rpm so back to the drawing board Im hoping its just a bed regulator
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Old 01-21-2014, 10:37 AM   #20
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Burnt wires

Quote:
Originally Posted by djmarchand View Post
The typical alarm setup has 12V power being supplied FROM A FUSE OR BREAKER to the alarm device and then to multiple sensor switches for oil pressure, water temperature, etc. When one of those sensors is closed, like at startup with no oil pressure it completes the circuit to ground and the alarm sounds until the engine starts, builds up pressure and opens the switch/sensor.

So one theory is that the 12V source was not fused (not uncommon) and somehow 12V was connected to the wrong side of the alarm. When you switched the batteries on it supplied 12V directly to the oil pressure switch which was closed to ground and it pulled high current because the alarm wasn't in the circuit to limit it and the wire burned through.

The same thing can happen to the idiot light for the alternator. If it was wired wrong and was not fused it could burn the wire.

Make sense?

David
Interesting thought because the boat has a couple of pressure sensors on the back of the engine and yet no alarms work on the boat I'm not sure this 1975 would have them but it could be I've hooked them up incorrectly
I'll post back
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