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Switched 12v at coil problem

Anything related to the operation of your boat. Steering, Bilge Pumps, thru-hulls, bottom paint, etc.
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Scurvy Dog
Scurvy Dog
Posts: 4
Joined: June 22nd, 2015, 7:05 am
Vessel Info: 1978 Voyager 33. Twin Crusader 270.
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Switched 12v at coil problem

Postby gdavis67 » June 22nd, 2015, 8:11 am

I have a new to me 78 Voyager 33'. This boat had been in storage for the last couple of years, during which time someone liberated the ignition coils and MSD ignition boxes. I replaced the distributers with aftermarket HEI distributors this past weekend. I was able to locater the 12v switched wire and the lead for the tachometer and got everything connected properly. The port engine fired right away. Starboard engine would not fire. Doing some testing, I found that there was not 12v at the lead at the engine. I traced the wires back to the wiring area under the helm and found that there was not power for the starboard engine coming from the plastic box under the helm to the motor. Upon removing and disassembling the box, I see that it contains two "coil" type units. I believe that this is what gives the three position switch (run, start, off) it's ability to do it's job. I was able to move the poles in the starboard switch, and viola, the starboard motor would light right up! During the day I fired the motors several times and no issues other that having to cut battery power to the starboard engine in order to shut it off. At the end of the day, I attempted to start both motors one last time, only to be disappointed. Port side would start, and immediately die, starboard would just crank with no fire. It was late and dark so I closed her up and went away disappointed. So, my question is: is this old technology that could/should be replaced? If not, would electrical contact cleaner do the job to get these coils back in working condition? Is there something else I should be looking into? Has anyone else had this problem and what was the solution. I don't want to affect the operation of the controls on the flybridge and don't want to juryrig something together.


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