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  1. #1

    Default 1983 5.0 Can't start the car

    Hello all!

    I'm new here, and new to rebuilding in general. My stepdad bought an 83 5.0 and I'm helping bring it back to life. One problem we are running into is starting it up. The electrical stuff turns on but will not start. The starter makes a clicking sound and we had some backwoods guy we bought it from do the electrical so we are not 100% sure if it is all setup right. There is a new battery, Alternator, Starter, and starter solenoid. It is kind of hard to find the right diagram, and I can't read schematics very well so I was wondering if I could get some help from here. I've attacked pictures of the Alternator and the Starter Solenoid, I'm just curious if the wiring is correct. Thanks in advance! If I messed up something, please let me know.

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  2. #2
    FEP Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    south-central WY


    Welcome to the forum!
    The black cable attached to the solenoid should go to the starter. The red cable should go to the positive post of the battery. That looks ok in the first picture, although I wonder about the lump in the black cable.
    I'm not sure what you're describing. When you say "the electrical stuff turns on", do you mean the headlights, the dash warning lights, the radio, or?
    I usually describe the solenoid as making a single click when the key is turned to the start position. The starter engaging a seized engine makes what I call a clunk. Is the click you hear a discrete click or a chattering click?
    Does the engine turn over or try to turn over when you try to start it? If it doesn't turn over, can you rotate the crankshaft manually?

  3. #3
    FEP Member
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Lake City Pa 16423


    Two possibilities. Bad battery connection loose or ground cable connection at the block is bad. The black cable you have going to the starter may have a bad section where the lump is with the cut wire coming out of it. Verify all of the heavy cables from the battery to their ends for good clean and tight connections, as well as their conditions. A bad cable or connection will not let enough current to crank over the starter, but will let the electrical item in the car still work.

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