June 13, 2020 at 10:30 am #205558
Hi – I just joined the club and I have a very pressing question regarding my engine, a 1958 Evinrude 35 and would appreciate any help at all. I bought this engine along with a 14 ft Whitehouse and a trailer, (an original one owner package) a year ago. The boat sat in a garage for the last 50 years. Engine was not run. I learned the reason the boat was put away – bad lower unit. I rebuilt the unit and I believe it is good now. Prior to that though, I was able to turn the key (has electric start) and the engine would turn over, electric choke worked, compression good. I disconnected all the cables, fuel line, etc, pulled the motor, and worked on it in my shop. I replaced coils, plugs, points, condensers, carb rebuild, new battery. I then put the motor back on the boat, reconnected the cables. Here’s my problem – now when I turn the key I get nothing, not a click from the selenoid, nothing at all happens. It’s like the engine is not grounded. If I put jumper cables from the battery to the starter the motor turns over fine. So, prior to my work, turning the key turned the motor over like it should, now I get nothing. Has to be something simple, something basic that I forgot to do or check. I’m not good with diagnostic equipment (meter, circuit light) but I do have them. Any ideas and suggestions would be appreciated. I’d like to get this old girl back in the water, thanks, GaryJune 13, 2020 at 2:55 pm #205581
Easy. The wing nut holding the cable to the side of the motor is a ground connection. To prove it, ground the motor to the battery with the negative battery only
US Member - 2 Years
Topics: 65June 14, 2020 at 1:42 pm #205705
The 2nd small terminal (the other one one goes to the starter ignition starter switch) on the solenoid gets it’s ground through the position-sensing mercury switch on the throttle linkage. If the mercury switch is bad, or the throttle turned up too far, the solenoid coil does not have ground on one end and the solenoid will not energize.
DaveJune 16, 2020 at 10:13 pm #205944
Thank you for the tip. I hooked a jumper cable from the negative battery terminal to a good grounding spot on the engine and then turned the key – nothing. I believe that rules out a “bad/no ground”. The battery is new and charged. Its frustrating because it worked before I started my labors. and now turning the key results in nothing.June 16, 2020 at 10:20 pm #205945
Thank you Dave. Where is the mercury switch? Is it in the solenoid “box”. I checked my throttle and it was pushed pretty well forward so I pulled it back to what would be a low rpm level. Same results.June 17, 2020 at 4:36 am #205949
OK, let’s back up and start over.
1. First, do you still have the junction box in the boat and cable plug on the side of the motor? I ask because so many have been hard-wired over the years.
2. You say you have a “meter” but don’t know how to use it. Is it a multimeter (checks voltage, resistance, etc)? Do you at least know how to check DC Volts? Or willing to learn?
If we knew the answers to these questions, it would be easier to help you.
EDIT: One other question, key turned on, does the electric choke work when you push the button?
- This reply was modified 3 weeks, 5 days ago by frankr.
US Member - 2 Years
Topics: 48June 17, 2020 at 7:52 am #205967
Post some pictures as well, especially of the wiring and junction box, perhaps the key switch also…
US Member - 2 Years
Topics: 65June 17, 2020 at 10:08 am #205974
The Mercury switch is on the side of the motor about an inch from where the tip of the remote throttle linkage connects. You can see it without opening up the shroud. Some models have two mercury switches there – look for a small silver part with a wire coming out of it . This part moves (tips back) when you advance the throttle. It is a position sensing switch. When the throttle is set low, mercury inside the part electrically shorts the wire to it’s case , which is grounded via its mounting screw.
DaveJune 23, 2020 at 9:27 am #206503
The junction box is there and appears be original. No apparent “custom wiring”. I had to replace the ignition switch because the boat came with no key. The boat had the original Evinrude switch and I was able to locate a key that matched the number on the switch. My new key woudn’t turn though so I ordered an after market switch. It was after installation of the new switch that I was able to turn the key and the motor turned over. Now it doesn’t. I will check the mercury switch and I will post some pictures. Thank you for the replies I have received.
June 23, 2020 at 10:55 am #206505
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 6 days ago by Gary Richey.
The boat has the junction box and cable plug. I have a multi meter and a light (with probe and small clamp, lights up when it measures electricity and gives a readout of voltage. I would really need to be walked through as to how to use them though (I’m a willing learner). My new ignition switch replaced the original button that operated the choke. Now I push in the key/switch (when I turn the key) for the choke.June 23, 2020 at 12:16 pm #206507
OK, I am going to give you the “Long Story”. Yes there are shortcuts, but I want you to see the big picture and understand how it works.
To do anything, electricity must flow in a circuit, from the source (battery + ) and back to the source (battery – ). So, I am posting a wiring diagram for you to follow. Your voltage indicating light is good enough for this operation. Start off by connecting it to the battery (-) terminal and leave it there for the duration of the test. Use an extension wire if necessary.
1. Notice from the diagram, a heavy cable runs between the battery and one side of the solenoid. So touch your light to that side of the solenoid,, and it lights up, right? That tells you that electricity gets that far, and now we are going to follow it the rest of the way through the circuit.
2. There is a green wire from where you are, leading to the “B” post on the key switch. Touch your light to that “B” post. Should light up.
3. When you turn the key to “Start”, electricity is directed to the “S” terminal on the switch. Touch your light there and turn key to start. Should light up.
4. Now, a white wire leaves the “S” terminal and back to one of the small posts on the solenoid. Touch your light there and turn the key to start. Should light up
5. Electricity flows through a coil inside the solenoid and out the other small post. Touch your light there and it should NOT light up. Why? Because that post is grounded through the mercury switch. BUT if it DOES light up, the mercury switch is not grounding it. Reason might be a broken wire, or throttle position set too far toward fast, or mercury switch case not grounded.
6. Last test, touch your light to an unpainted spot on the powerhead and turn the key to start. Should NOT light up. Again, because it is grounded through the negative battery cable. If it does light up, there is a problem with the engine ground.
7. Throughout this, I have ignored the cable plug on the side of the motor. If any tests fail, suspect a problem wit that plug.
You must be logged in to access attached files.June 23, 2020 at 5:53 pm #206525
Frankr – I want to thank you for your detailed help. I think, however, that my electrical lesson will be postponed awhile. I revisited my throttle linkage and determined that it was not completely reconnected. I manually turned back the steering bracket throttle (not with the throttle cable running to the upfront controls, which I disconnected). I turned the key and SUCCESS!!! It turns over!! That being said though, I have very little travel in the throttle cable. The upfront lever only moves about an inch. I’m guessing the cable needs to be lubricated? Remember, the motor sat for 50 years. How does one lubricate the cable (rubber-like casing with a wire inside). Or do I replace the cable with a new one?June 23, 2020 at 6:06 pm #206526
If the cable truly is the culprit, all I can say is that I fought those things for years (trying to lubricate them, etc). I finally got smarter and just slap a new cable on. The new cables are light-years better than the old rubber covered ones anyway. Having said that, the motor has to be in forward gear before the throttle will move very far.June 25, 2020 at 12:54 pm #206666
There’s a learning curve here. I had no idea the throttle setting had to be set low for the motor to turn and I had no idea it had to be in forward for the throttle cable to have full travel. Thank you guys for the help. Now my forward//neutral/reverse cable seems to be stuck. It’s been a work in progress but I believe the motor is a good one and I’m making progress, that is what is important. I’ll be reaching out for more help soon, I’m sure. Thanks again, Gary
US Member - 2 Years
Topics: 48June 25, 2020 at 7:56 pm #206711
And you won’t always be able to shift into either gear when the engine is not running, just like you can’t always put a manual shift car into gear when it is not running….
Have an assistant spin the propeller while in neutral, then try shifting into either gear…. You should be always be able to shift out of either gear into neutral though….But, once again, the throttle has to be set down low, or else the neutral throttle interlock/limiter might prevent you from shifting out of gear….I think….
Nothing wrong with a learning curve, the key word is “learning”….
Post some pictures of this nice old Evinrude…
PS: Be sure the plug wires are pulled off and the key switch is off before you assistant spins the propeller…
- This reply was modified 2 weeks, 4 days ago by fleetwin. Reason: addition
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