View Full Version : Dash Electrical ShortIt Never Ends

11-01-2009, 03:46 PM
"Despite the crappy weather we heard the srtipers are running out of the inlet so we grabbed the rain gear and clams and head out. Half way to the ocean the port engine died and those buzzer alarms went off on the starboard side.

Shut it all down to investigate but while the starboard engine was fine and started, the port side had no spark. In addition, those buzzers we buzzin' and the starboard tach was hovering around 4-5000...However, we were only at idle. Got back again on 1 engine.

SOMETHING is supplying power to short out those buzzers and stealing the juice to send power to the coil.

One problem is the helm wiring is a nightmare, not because it is a helm but when the repower was done, ALL sorts of wires were cut and spliced with any color and connector available.

My new dash is ready to install and HERE is the QUESTION:

I TEND to think that what I basically need to do is to get the starter engaged, send power to the instruments and signals from the senders. WHERE is this thinking not correct?

I read the manual with the basic 8 wire group to each main plug...is that essentially the feed to the dash and key switches?"

11-01-2009, 07:42 PM
"Electrical problems will drive you nuts! I'd be sure to figure it out before installing the new dash, and I think your approach makes sense: get parts of it working and go from there.

It sounds like a grounds problem when all those things go bonko at the same time.


11-01-2009, 07:49 PM

You go fishing and I get the exhaust manifold job from H**L; whats wrong here?

You need to get B+ and GND from the engine to the helm. You also need to feed the starter, at the appropriate time. The Ignition needs its purple wire excited and the gauges need to connect to their senders. All that's left if the tach lead...that's about it for the 8-pin plug if your's is old enough otherwise add the warning horn (alarm) wire and you'll have all 8.

On the buzzers, something is GROUNDING the lead to the switches, in the engine room, otherwise they'd be silent. That could be connected with the coil issue but its hard to tell not being their to inspect it. I suspect you are gonna do the new helm so no point in debugging it....

I got the bulk of the ugly work done on the manifold but it still isn't out. They use nuts and studs - plain steel. The back ones came out with one ugly spot - motormount clearance - but the ones in the front cylinder, where the hole is, are eroded, bad. The top one if off but the lower one will wait til tomorrow."

11-01-2009, 08:27 PM
"Jeff, I agree with something going bonkers and the worst of it is the years of junk that was cut and spliced and left un-attached. When we took the engine out a few weeks ago, it was a goal to clear up a few open wires...there must be 10 -12 of them that just stop. There is a left over ballast resistor and it associated wiring. Someone decided to use it to connect so other accessory to the 12V line and leave the receptable and other wires all just hanging. By the way, all of the in line fuses up top are fine, nothing seems to have blown.

Mark...FISHING ? That was the plan but we never made it out of the creek . Then in a nice wind and a 60 ft wide cut thru the marsh grass, we tried to turn the boat around on 1 engine but that did not work. Thanks to a passing boater ( there are loads of Parkers around here) who towed the bow around and we headed to the dock. Rained most of the day on and off but the stripers are running and we really thought we were coming home with a few.

So, you agree? As long as I get the key switch and gauges wired in, the alarms are just another circuit thru the key switch? In 3 1/2 yrs, the buzzers NEVER worked. I found a loose wire down in the engine room when we put the engine back in so I touched it to ground and the buzzers (stb) went off. SO, I cut, labeled and isolated that wire. SO where is the buzzer getting ground from? Can't seem to see it yet. This has to be related to the other day when we pulled the dash off to try and get an idea of the job. Every thing was fine for about 25 minutes, then it just coincedently died during a throttle turn (no wake zone)It is really a nightmare behind that 7" x 30" plate. I was hoping to remove the dash panel with the gauges but aside from the quick connect plugs, wires are tapped into stuff all over the place and would need to be cut.

All of the wiring being pretty straight forward, I am unclear about the dual helm configuration. Is it parallel or in series? I assume it is all parallel as the gauges would need to draw from the senders as a load and not thru one another ie: first the lower helm then up to the upper. Same with the Key Switches...all separate?

Here is one item I am not sure of: The buzzer has 2 terminals but there is another box...same size but has 4 or 5 spade lugs and a feed from the key switch...any ideas? Do you know if the female side of those connectors are available down by the engine?

Is this manifold job on your boat? I had that job from H**L, twice. If you need the BFH..."

11-01-2009, 09:23 PM
"Sounds like the alarm circuit shorted to the tach wire, causes no ignition, tach issue, and dead engine. Just a guess from a long way away.. Fished most of yesterday, dragged a 18" squid on the bottom @ 1500', drifted for a dozen miles, nothing. Trolled at 14 kts on the way back with an artificial, nothing. Not a hit. Maybe next time."

11-01-2009, 09:31 PM
"Thanks Dave,

That will be my first look-see when I get to the boat again one day this week.

Fishing here shut down a few weeks ago and with the storms..not much happening aside from 8-11 foot seas. The fall striper run may hang in there for a few weeks or more depending on weather. Some 40-50 lb one showing up. What are you fishing for at that depth and sized bait?

Last week a wave capsized a guy in a small bout and as he grabbed his steering wheel for stability, it broke (plastic) and the wave filled him up."

11-01-2009, 09:49 PM
"Trying that "new" daytime swordfish trick. Fish the bottom on a drift. It took a 30# disposable sinker to get down, then just 3 lbs to keep it down. After that didn't work for 1/2 day, then the HS troll for wahoo on the way back. Just 3 to 4 ft seas this w/e. 82 deg surface water temp."