Performance Boats Forum banner

1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
172 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have some pics of what happened. I hook my fully charged battery up to the terminals and started cranking on the engine. It never started because this is the first time in about 4 months that I've turned it over, so it had no fuel in the carb. I looked back and saw smoke coming from the battery cables. I got so hot, that it melted the lead on the battery, seized the wing nut on the post, and the post pulled right out of the battery. Now am I using to thin of wire, or is there something wrong with the starter? The only thing that I have have power going to is the coil and the starter. Any suggestions? Thanks

Eric
 

Attachments

·
The Man
Joined
·
1,788 Posts
Interesting..that same thing had happened to the battery on my boat when I got it. It started fine so I didn't think too much about it until now. My battery looked identical to yours, same positive terminal too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,409 Posts
Sound like that starter has got one hell of a draw. Take it in and have it load tested to see how many amps its drawing to crank over.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
172 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
If it's drawing to much, I'm guessing it's time for a new one huh? So yall think the cable I'm using is ok? Thanks for the quick replys.
 

·
Living in a cage of fear
Joined
·
16,464 Posts
Short in starter, or direct short on positive cable.
 

·
I'm No Expert
Joined
·
3,142 Posts
My buddys neg term gets so hot it smokes and will burn the you when he tries to crank it. He replaced the started and same thing. His boat has two batterys and two neg wires. I moved his neg wire off the engine mounts and onto the bolt that goesnt into the starter (ford). It helped but it still does it. I think his problem is that his boat is a pile, the back has greese and oil everywhere and i think he's just not making a good connection. Stock ford and it turns over shitter than my mild 468... and i only run one battery. He got over doing anything with it because he bought 23' boat... now he's trying to sell that to go to a 26' :rolleyes:...
 

·
E-7 Sheepdog (ret)
Joined
·
6,834 Posts
Starter should draw normally under 250 amps. Much more, it needs new bearings.

Run nothing smaller than 6-gauge wire, 2-gauge would be much better, any of the "ought" sizes (1/0, 2/0) are overkill, but, won't hurt anything.

Shaun, I suspect you are correct about your bud's boat. Connections need to be clean, adn not greasy.
There are some conductive substances you CAN put IN the connections, to assist corrosion-proofing, and covering a tight connection in grease will do no harm (old anti-corrosion trick). Grease and crud between the metal parts, is not good.

He may well have a bad starter as well.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
410 Posts
More then likely a bad connection at the post or a short in the starter but I am leaning towards bad connection, as the battery connection has more surface area then the cable itself at any point and would more likely burn out at the cable then at the connection if it were a short in the starter.

Joe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,288 Posts
Btw how far away is is too far for a battery ? for example my pos cable is 72".. The ground is shorter........ I'm thinking when he changes his starter, the problem will be gone(well maybe a battery too).:)sphss
 

·
The Man
Joined
·
1,788 Posts
Btw how far away is is too far for a battery ? for example my pos cable is 72".. The ground is shorter........ I'm thinking when he changes his starter, the problem will be gone(well maybe a battery too).:)sphss
Alot of drag racers put the battery in the trunk for better weight distribution, so as long as the cables are big enough, I don't see distance being a problem.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
70 Posts
Jetboatcop
I had an Olds in my Cp with a lot of compression, it would eat the bushing in the front of the starter. I also had VW dune Buggy that did the same thing. It makes the starter work harder because the inside coil may be hitting the outside magnetic field (forgot the names) and binding.
This could cause the starter to draw more current and the longer you crank it the hotter the battery terminal gets and it also cranks slower. If I remember correctly you can buy the bushings at a regular Auto parts store and a brush kit etc.
Good luck
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,234 Posts
Loose connection and lose the .89c cable...those cable connections blow big time....I would recommend, if you're on a budget, go to a welding supply house and buy a copper welding cable lug and solder it onto the cable, also use hex nuts to put it onto the battery and keep them tight...

I have had more than a fair share of the Kragen special battery cables take a poo...They make an inexpensive hammer blow type cable crimper for those lugs too (cost about $25) I always use 1/0 cable or larger...

GT :)hand
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
172 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for all the replys. I guess I should also add that my engine turns over very slow, which is another reason that I think my starter may be bad also. Although I know I do need new cables.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
11,648 Posts
As in the other replies, it could be the starter, but battery cable size and "every" connection in the cable circuit both hot and ground can cause both the slow turnover and the melted cable end. The melted end was just the weakest link. I would first check all connections for tightness and connectivity (use ohm meter). Find a bunch of resistance somewhere and you've found at least one of the causes. You can easily test around a connection with an ohm meter by sticking the wire with a sharp ice pick tool (I use the end of my test light) and then just hooking one side of the ohm meter to that tool securely and the other side to the other side of the connection. Grounds, hots, all the same, they should be near 0 ohms. Keep in mind when doing this that anodize, paint, powder coat, grease, and oil are all non or poor conductors of electricity. You can check the cranking amps with an amp tester also but that won't isolate whether it is the starter or a connectivity issue. You already know you have high amps due to the melted cable end. High amps can easily be caused by high resistance in the battery cable circuit (bad cable or bad connection). Just suggestions to isolate. It very well may be the starter but you need to check everything to be sure.
 

·
E-7 Sheepdog (ret)
Joined
·
6,834 Posts
As in the other replies, it could be the starter, but battery cable size and "every" connection in the cable circuit both hot and ground can cause both the slow turnover and the melted cable end. The melted end was just the weakest link. I would first check all connections for tightness and connectivity (use ohm meter). Find a bunch of resistance somewhere and you've found at least one of the causes. You can easily test around a connection with an ohm meter by sticking the wire with a sharp ice pick tool (I use the end of my test light) and then just hooking one side of the ohm meter to that tool securely and the other side to the other side of the connection. Grounds, hots, all the same, they should be near 0 ohms. Keep in mind when doing this that anodize, paint, powder coat, grease, and oil are all non or poor conductors of electricity. You can check the cranking amps with an amp tester also but that won't isolate whether it is the starter or a connectivity issue. You already know you have high amps due to the melted cable end. High amps can easily be caused by high resistance in the battery cable circuit (bad cable or bad connection). Just suggestions to isolate. It very well may be the starter but you need to check everything to be sure.
Much better to locate the actual problem and fix it, as opposed to shotgunning it with parts till it works.

Testing all the wiring connections is only maybe 15 min. work as there are only 4 to 6 of them.

On the "solder on a copper lug" idea, not a bad one, but, much better to crimp the lug on. Get a connection hot from normal cranking, you CAN melt the solder and the wire falls out. 370*F
Crimped connection stays.
Seen it happen to someone.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,225 Posts
Good plan of attack Rex. Of course I could get an ohm meter and all those testing devices from my electrician but my theory is, I will need a battery for something if that turns out not to be the problem and if it was not the starter then I have a spare. I will need all those parts eventually.

Cy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
656 Posts
Doing a voltage drop test can tell if connections or wires are an issue too. Compare voltage at the battery and at the starter when cranking the engine. Especialy if you don't have an amp meter that can read starting amps. Just my .02
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top