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TR250 starting and headlight issues

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  • TR250 starting and headlight issues

    Years ago, I installed a high torque gear reduction starter on my Tr250, and continued to use the original solenoid as was detailed and offered in the installation instructions by using an optional bypass wire on the starter.

    A year or so ago, from time to time when I turned the key, I’d get a click instead of the starter turning over, and by returning the key to twelve o clock and back to start, it would typically resolve itself. I figured it was the original solenoid, so I ordered the repro from Moss and installed it. Didn’t work either, and it still clicked in occasion rather than engage the starter. So I ran the ignition wire direct to the gear reduction starter, and used one side of the new solenoid as a hot relay for the cables and for other wires that had been “hot” to the solenoid. This still hasn’t eliminated the occasional “click” instead of starter engagement.

    trying to figure out whether perhaps it’s the solenoid on the starter, or the starter, itself? Or the ignition key or wiring?

    meanwhile, at the same time, it seems like my headlight switch suddenly has no juice, even though the same wires that were in the original solenoid are in the hot terminal relay I’ve got on the new solenoid. I’ve got no headlights. To add further complexity to all this, I’ll mention that I have the moss headlight relay installed as well, which has worked just fine all along. I checked the fuses in the original fuse block and the inline fuse on the headlight relay kit, and both are fine,

    so I haven’t solved the first issues with the starter, and created a new one in the process, with the headlight outage. I’m no auto electric genius, as you can tell here, so any advice would be very welcome!

  • #2
    Run a "remote starter switch" separate from the ignition switch. It should be from batt+ through momentary contact switch to starter solenoid. This way you effectively bypass most of the car's wiring, to include the ignition switch. If the starter behaves normally, then start tracing back along the power flow...wire, ignition switch (starter wire), up through fuses to battery.

    The lighting circuit is also fairly easy to test. Remove both headlight plugs and test voltage to lights at the plug (keep in mind one low beam, one high beam, and one ground exist in that plug)...then back to the headlight switch, and in front of the switch. You should hope for close to battery voltage, although a one volt drop may actually exist (old wire/switch resistance to blame).

    Find your wiring diagram here:
    Advanceautowire.com
    The PDF covers all of the TRs from TR250 on.

    The bonus to a TR harness is that most circuits can be disconnected and bypassed with one 25 foot 16 ga wire. The wire should have an alligator clip on one end, and a bullet connector on the other end.
    So to test the headlight switch to headlights, disconnect the power wire to the switch, connect your test lead to batt+, and the other end gets plugged into the headlight switch barrel connector. Now try the lights with full battery voltage going through the switch.

    Those ignition, headlight and turnsignal switches are delicate! The flash-to-pass is kind of hokey too.

    Note that most British wiring junctions are silly barrel connectors/couplers tieing together two (or more) bullet terminals.
    Those barrel connectors do get old, split, and lose good contact. I know as I did the LED conversion on two TRs that those 4-way connectors at the lights side of the turn signal switch had all split. No real connections remained inside the connector's vinyl insulation.

    Good luck!
    Last edited by TR6_Jim; 10-08-2019, 01:55 PM.

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    • #3
      Smells like dirty battery terminals. They may look clean, but humor yourself and remove, positively clean, and reinstall.

      Easy test, and good maintenance anyway.
      '74 TR6 CF13007U aka "Mr. T"
      Custom Blue (Delft-Like) and New Tan (Formerly Mallard and New Tan)
      Points, Ballast Bypassed, Bosch Blue Coil, Moss Cobalt Wires, Champion RN12YC plugs.
      Peaks and tweaks, but the spirit of Original
      Redlines always.
      My wife is the Driver, I'm just the Mechanic....

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      • #4
        Thanks! Remote starter switch coming Tuesday and will report back.

        Comment


        • #5
          The remote starter switch turned the starter over MOST of the time, but every five or so times it just clicks, like when I turn the key. At the same time, the key still just clicks and never engages the starter. I did check the battery terminals, which were clean, and even removed the quick-release negative battery cable device, and directly hooked up the ground cable to the battery, just in case that was the culprit; no change. Thoughts?

          Comment


          • #6
            A click when trying to start is usually the starter solenoid contacts. Battery thru the key operates the solenoid which connects direct battery to the starter motor. If you just hear a click then usually the solenoid contacts are dirty. You'll need to remove the starter with the solenoid, then remove the solenoid and take it apart and inspect and clean it. I think the procedure is in the Bentley manual.

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            • #7
              TYVM. It’s a gear reduction starter, so the bentley manual won’t help here, but I’ll give it a shot

              Comment

              TR250 starting and headlight issues

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