Starter solenoid questions

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Starter solenoid questions
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary London, Camarillo, CA on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 04:28 pm:

I'm adding a starter to my '11 touring and have a couple of questions. I'd prefer to use a 'low profile' momentary switch to activate a solenoid. I see options for 3 post and post designs, and some are activated with voltage applied and others with ground applied.

I'm inclined to locate the solenoid closer to the battery than to the starter, use an insulated base solenoid and operate it with switch applying voltage rather than ground, but I can go either way on that.


So the questions are;

1. I'd like recommendations for a specific solenoid, and to know if it operates with ground or voltage applied.

2. What arguments do you see for a voltage vs a ground operated solenoid?

3. Does anyone see any problem with the solenoid mounted closer to the rear of the car? I will use 1/0 cables on both the motor and battery sides, so I don't see a concern but would like input.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walt Berdan, Bellevue, WA on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 05:15 pm:

A solenoid for a '56 Ford would serve nicely. It's 6 volt and 3 post. Ground the base and apply power to the small post to activate it. Any simple momentary switch should work fine for the low power side.

The 4 post solenoids are for 12 volt systems where one post is used to activate the solenoid and the other is a direct power to the coil bypassing any ballast resister to aid in starting. These are common on 57 and later Fords. You could use one of these if easier to locate and just ignore the 4th post.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By David L Corman on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 05:31 pm:

56 Fords are 12 volt-----55 was last 6 volt system


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Walt Berdan, Bellevue, WA on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 06:25 pm:

Oops, sorry. Thanks for the correction David.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary London, Camarillo, CA on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 06:52 pm:

I will be using 6 volt


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Robert Brough on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 07:30 pm:

I am no auto electrician, but will tell you what works for me. On my WWII jeep, the starter switches are suspect, so many add a solenoid to the circuit to take the surge away from thefoot starter switch. I installed a 4 position key switch and a 6v external grounded 3 post solenoid. It is grounded to the engine side of the firewall out os fight under the oil batch air cleaner. I can start the jeep with the key or with the starter switch with the key in the on position. It works fantastic. The jeep is also 6v negative ground.

On my 1915 War Wagon, I did exactly the same. Mounted my solenoid to the frame just forward of the starter switch using a running board bracket bolt for ground. Positive battery cable to one side of starter switch, other side of starter switch to solenoid and other larger terminal on solenoid to starter. Other side of starter switch to small post on solenoid to activate. Pick up your hot lead to terminal block from the hot side of the starter switch.

It's only been a few month, but everything works well. Starter does not get hot, foot switch does not get hot, etc.

I just get a 6v external ground three post solenoid from eBay for about $8 and away I go.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James A. Golden on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 10:00 pm:

There is a difference in the 6 volt 3 terminal solenoids.

If the large terminals are marked Battery and Starter, a ground is required on the small terminal to activate the solenoid.

If the large terminals are not marked, a ground is required on the solenoid case and a + voltage is required on the small terminal to activate the solenoid. This is the most desirable type, but either type will work, if the Ignition Switch does not have to be on to activate the starter and the unit is wired correctly.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By brass car guy on Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 11:25 pm:

I always use a modern solenoid. I prefer a marine unit with a push button in the middle of the front. This allows a "remote start" if you are out under the hood.

I always use an 8 volt battery in conjunction with the 12 volt solenoid and that combination works very well. 8 volts spins the starter very easily but does not jamb the drive into the ring gear as a 12 volt battery will.

My 8 volt battery and 12 volt solenoid worked exceptionally well starting my Frontenac single overhead cam sprint car. The 8 volt batteries are available at any tractor supply.

just sayin'

brasscarguy


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 08:39 am:

To clarify: there's a "3" terminal and a "4" terminal. The 3 has the 2 large batt/starter terminals and one small terminal it's activated by energizing the small terminal. It grounds thru the mounting bracket. The 4 terminal also has the 2 large terminals but has 2 smaller terminals. To activate it power goes to one small term. and ground to the other. Usually this one is used when you want to use a ground circuit to activate the solinoid. In other words you permanently power one small terminal and use a switch going to ground on the other. The mounting bracket on the 4 term is not grounded. The large terms may or may not be marked battery or starter.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Tom Miller, mostly in Dearborn on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 09:18 am:

Be careful. The 12 volt Ford starter solenoid used in the sixties and seventies as well as other decades does not have a ground terminal. The second post bypasses the resistance wire to the distributor.

As others have said, consider a 6 volt solenoid off a forties era Ford car. It has a manual bump button and the switch is a simple ground to frame to energize the solenoid.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Larry Smith, Lomita, California on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 09:59 am:

Leave your car alone!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By John Zibell, Huntsville, AL on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 10:40 am:

Support a vendor that sells the solenoid and provides instructions. http://www.snydersantiqueauto.com/starter-solenoid


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Dave Barker - Dayton, OH on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 05:44 pm:

As usual, Larry wants to tell others what to do (or what not to do) to their own cars. Some nerve, but not surprising given the source.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Gary London, Camarillo, CA on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 06:26 pm:

Larry and I go way back, I'm good with his comments!!


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By James A. Golden on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 - 06:37 pm:

Tractor Supply solenoids had the schematic on the back the last time I bought one there.


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