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post #1 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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Ford 641 wiring to solenoid

Hey, I got a problem hopefully you can help me with. I got my father in laws 58' ford 641 when he passed away. I've replaced many things on it but this one has got me guessing. I got on it the other day and hit the starter button and then nothing...

I figured it was the solenoid or the starter so i replaced the solenoid. It's not the solenoid. I bought the new one and wired it up and nothing, so i go and buy a temp switch to put on just to crank it (getting ready to plant). Well, I get it cranked by jumping the solenoid and it cranked right up. Only problem is I had to pull a wire to get it to shut off, the key isn't switching it off. The wires are the same as they were.

I got to tracing and the igition goes to a box mounted on the back of the steering wheel shaft. I have no idea what this box is or what this does. Could this be the problem?

It's not starting or stopping like it's supposed to. Help PLEASE


2nd thing...How hard is it to replace the starter button? Looks like you have to take the gear shifter plate off to get it off...ewwww...

Last edited by trinic; 03-12-2009 at 02:21 PM.
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post #2 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 02:36 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

Need a little more info, is it still original 6volt system or has it been converted to 12v.

I assume you have a good battery, so...

Before changing the starter switch test it with a volt meter. It is a grounding switch easily checked by grounding one lead of your meter and touching the post while pushing the button, if you get a reading while holding the button down the switch is good.

The original solenoid is internally hot and uses the small post for a ground to activate. I would put the old one back one and test it by grounding the small post.

The replacement solenoid must be for this type of system. Unless you specify otherwise solenoids purchased from auto parts stores are not since they use 12v to activate.

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post #3 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 02:50 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid



I'm going to assume that the 'box' behind the dash that you're referring to is probably your voltage regulator. Yes, if it's bad it will cause problems... and depending on what's wrong with it... I guess it 'could' cause the symptoms that you're referring to.

What John said about troubleshooting it, though.

Here's an electrical system diagram... hopefully it'll help out, some..




As to replacing your starter button. Really it's pretty easy. Yes, you have to remove the transmission (shifter) cover, but... Just be careful of the spring and detent at the rear of the transmission cover... don't loose those. Put the tractor in neutral before you begin... and make sure that the shifter is lined up properly when you put it back together. In fact... just keep in mind that the tractor MUST be in neutral for your starter button to work at all...


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post #4 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 02:55 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

A bad VREG SHOULD NOT cause run on in a 6v system.

Bad wireing.. or misswireing can cause runon.

the ignition switch powers the coil.. etc. if there is an alternator miswired.. or some sort of ressitor bypass setup and it is misswired.. then yes.. ignition may run on...

vreg is OUT of the ignition circuit for all intents and purposes.

to the original poster. chasing bad wireing is a hassle..

start fresh... either new harness.. or make one with a roll of wire, box of connectors and some e-tape and zip ties..

14awg stranded and you are good to go.. lamps and all except 1-0 starter and solenoid wires.. and ground braid.

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post #5 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 03:09 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

Sorry I should have specified. It has been converted to a 12v system.
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post #6 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 03:14 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

if it runs on after starting, has an alternator.. but has no power to the coil when stopped.. then #1 switched excite line from alternator is likely tied to the coil side of the key switch with no isolation. sufficient isolation is a low wattage bulb like a 194 trailer marker lamp.. or a sufficient sized diode inline with the marked end ( cathode ) facing the alternator.. diodes like a 1n5408 will work. 1a/50piv minimum.. 3a/200piv preferred.. radio shack 276- 1141 and 276-1661 will work.

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post #7 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

I don't think it's actual run on, i think it's more of it not being wired correctly or being rigged. My father in law has had this tractor for nearly 30 years and has throughout those years "fixed" alot of the things the best way he knew how...and that was just to get it working.

Is it possible the vreg can prevent the ignition from working correctly? That would explain why the switch doesn't want to work either....or maybe the ignition itself which I'm not sure how that can break considering it's a post with a key sticking out basically. Which would be more likely, the vreg or the ignition...maybe I should just replace both.

And the starter switch...It's rigged up with another push button right now but I'd like to get the original switch back working...would this be a pain in the @ss to do?

I'm fairly decent with mechanics but have no clue on diodes, etc... Not even sure where they would come into play
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post #8 of 15 Old 03-12-2009, 04:36 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

This thing has obviously been modified or converted and so no one can assume anything about the wiring, so as other's have said, the wiring/ compontents themselves can be causing the whole problem.

We need to know what kind of alternator you have and how it's wired, if nothing else, post some pictures.

The solenoid:

there are different wiring schemes for solenoids.

Some have a "grounded base" where the "small terminal" feeds voltage IN to the solenoid, through the (magnetic) coil to ground

Some have an "insulated" base and here we can get into trouble, there's at least two different wiring schemes

some insulated base solenoids have the coil hooked to a small terminal AND one of the big battery terminals----you ground the small terminal through a one--wire switch to energize the solenoid

Some insulated base solenoids have TWO terminals, and therefore you must hook "juice" to both those terminals

HOWEVER on wrench in the works is the popular "Ford" solenoid used for years and years on Ford cars and trucks. It has TWO small terminals, but it is a GROUNDED BASE--one small terminal "needs" juice to start, and the other small terminal becomes hot when the solenoid is engaged. This small terminal feeds 12V OUT to the coil for a hot spark during cranking

The next wrench in the works is does this tractor have any safety switches? Seat/ clutch/ transmission/ etc?


Get a 12V test lamp, a digital meter (they're cheap now, 20 bucks here and there, parts stores, Sears, etc) and get yourself some good heavy alligator clips and make a couple of jumpers. You CAN buy them at Radio Sh## but they're not particularly good quality.


So determine why the solenoid won't crank FIRST

What did you do, what is this "second" starter button you hooked up?
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post #9 of 15 Old 03-13-2009, 05:44 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

I've started at the bottom and worked my way up. I've got it narrowed down to the voltage regulator or the ignition itself. The second starter button was because I thought the original button may have went out,broke, etc...

It is a hard worked old tractor. I hooked the second button up and bypassed the ignition because I couldn't get it to do anything if it was wired up the way it originally was. Here's what happened.

I jumped on, turned the ignition on and pushed the button..I heard a little buzz and then nothing at all, but because i heard the buzz i figured it wouldn't be the ignition because it made a noise when the starter button was pressed initially. Thinking the starter may have been locked out I pulled it and hit it with the cables, it worked. I then replaced the solenoid and still nothing at all. Knowing the starter worked and it had a brand new solenoid, i went up and got a similar push button switch and hooked it up...nothing.so i wired the switch up to bypass the voltage regulator and ignition to see if it could have possibly been a bad solenoid (has been known to happen). Started right up. I replaced all the wires that were old under the hood and tried...still nothing. The voltage regulator, which i had no clue about, and the ignition were the two things left.

I never thought about the ignition itself, but that would make sense as to why the button didn't work. but i'm not familiar with the vreg or anything about it. i'm at work now so i'll post pics tomorrow
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post #10 of 15 Old 03-13-2009, 07:39 AM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid



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post #11 of 15 Old 03-13-2009, 01:25 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

Quote:
Originally Posted by trinic View Post
I've started at the bottom and worked my way up. I've got it narrowed down to the voltage regulator or the ignition itself. The second starter button was because I thought the original button may have went out,broke, etc...

It is a hard worked old tractor. I hooked the second button up and bypassed the ignition because I couldn't get it to do anything if it was wired up the way it originally was. Here's what happened.

I jumped on, turned the ignition on and pushed the button..I heard a little buzz and then nothing at all, but because i heard the buzz i figured it wouldn't be the ignition because it made a noise when the starter button was pressed initially. Thinking the starter may have been locked out I pulled it and hit it with the cables, it worked. I then replaced the solenoid and still nothing at all. Knowing the starter worked and it had a brand new solenoid, i went up and got a similar push button switch and hooked it up...nothing.so i wired the switch up to bypass the voltage regulator and ignition to see if it could have possibly been a bad solenoid (has been known to happen). Started right up. I replaced all the wires that were old under the hood and tried...still nothing. The voltage regulator, which i had no clue about, and the ignition were the two things left.

I never thought about the ignition itself, but that would make sense as to why the button didn't work. but i'm not familiar with the vreg or anything about it. i'm at work now so i'll post pics tomorrow
You are wildly throwing parts at this instead of troubleshooting. A voltage regulator/ gen/ alternator will NOT cause this problem, except to say that if it's not charging, the battery might be dead. You can take a regulator, the generator, or alternator COMPLETELY OFF of just about any vehicle and it will still start and run.

Get yourself a 12V test lamp, at least. Try to figure out what's going on instead of throwing parts at the problem. From your comments do we ASSUME that the starter button only works when the ign switch is ON? That might be a great big clue right there. Maybe the ign switch is bad.

Is the starter button one or two wires? If it's two wire, where exactly do you have it hooked?

Usually a "buzz" indicates a dead battery or bad connection. Have you simply tried cleaning the battery cables?
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post #12 of 15 Old 03-17-2009, 08:23 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

Quote:
Originally Posted by 440roadrunner View Post
You are wildly throwing parts at this instead of troubleshooting. A voltage regulator/ gen/ alternator will NOT cause this problem, except to say that if it's not charging, the battery might be dead. You can take a regulator, the generator, or alternator COMPLETELY OFF of just about any vehicle and it will still start and run.

Get yourself a 12V test lamp, at least. Try to figure out what's going on instead of throwing parts at the problem. From your comments do we ASSUME that the starter button only works when the ign switch is ON? That might be a great big clue right there. Maybe the ign switch is bad.

Is the starter button one or two wires? If it's two wire, where exactly do you have it hooked?

Usually a "buzz" indicates a dead battery or bad connection. Have you simply tried cleaning the battery cables?
I think i'm just going to rewire it all (it needs it anyway), and thanks to those that provided the wiring diagrams.



The wire from the altenator is going to amp gauge and then one coming from the amp gauge is going to the solenoid, What i'm not sure about is why there is another small wire going around the front of the block and hooking onto the coil from the altenator. I'm not sure where the problem is in the wiring but when it's hooked onto the solenoid it will start and not turn off, when not it just won't start. He has rewired it I just have to find out how and why he did the things he did. I have pictures i've already taken that I will post tonight and show you what i'm talking about. Also, what is the purpose of the voltage regulator? I'm not familiar with what it does.

I took the battery off while it was running and it stays running, which tells me it's not the altenator.

It's trying to turn over which tells me it's not the starter.

I can jump the solenoid and get it running so it's not the solenoid. (new solenoid)

The switch will turn it off once the wire is taken off the solenoid, but won't start with it on there???

i haven't replaced anything that "didn't need it" so to speak. I'll post the wiring pics when its dark for all to see what's going on.
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post #13 of 15 Old 03-17-2009, 08:46 PM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

How many little wires are on the solenoid ???


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post #14 of 15 Old 03-24-2009, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

Here's what I figured out:

There were a few problems going on and i finally purchased a volt meter and found them.

The solenoid was indeed out and when I put the new one on, the termination block went out. I finally took all the wires off and rewired the entire tractor which solved the wiring problem. The tractor kept acting like the battery wasn't charged everytime I went to start it. I pulled the dist. cap which i don't think has been changed in my lifetime by the looks of it. I wanted to restore it piece by piece anyhow so replaced the condenser, cap, button and points since i was replacing everything else. I bought a new battery and replaced it also.

All together I replaced:

ignition
button starter
solenoid
condenser
distributer cap, button, condenser and points
all wires and wiring
plugs and wires



It now runs but i've ordered a oil filter/oil and a gasket because it drips oil from the bottom of the oil pan.

It sounds like it's got a lifter coming loose. Can someone tell me how much it's going to take to get someone to fix this because i'm not going to do it. Everyone once in a while it won't have any fire coming to it but it's a problem with the cap itself, have to get a new one that fits a bit better from the parts store..not sure why but the button is grinding the metal.

But either way, it runs. Thank you guys for all the help...i did use the wiring diagram.
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post #15 of 15 Old 03-25-2009, 09:52 AM
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Re: Help with wiring to solenoid

It may not be a pan gasket leak.. it may be the governor.

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