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Old 09-12-2018, 06:58 PM   #1
kyscout
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Default 1976 Scout Starting Problems

I am new to the forum, but I have read several threads on here that have been very helpful.

I have a starting problem that I need some help with. Here is the background on my 1976 Scout. It has a 304 with a manual transmission. My Dad had it since the early 80's and to my knowledge the engine parts are all original. It has not been started in about 20 years and I recently began to get it going again. It has a new gas tank, fuel pump, fuel filter, spark plugs and I had the carb rebuilt. With a little oil in the cylinders and some gas priming the carb, I was pleasantly surprised that it started fairly easily.

I drove it around the storage area for several trips and finally felt comfortable to get it out on the road. A few days later I drove it about 15 miles to a friends house and it did just fine. I then drove it back to my storage place and turned it off. I cleaned it up and bit and went to start it back up and it would not even click or make any sound whatsoever of starting. It has a new battery, but I tried to jump it and nothing. Once inside, I raised the hood and seen a relay that is just below the hood latch that basically was melted. I have attached some pictures of the relay. The back of it is totally melted. As you will see from the pictures, it has the words Prestolite SWF 4280 stamped on the relay. The vacuum lines go into the carb. I assume the relay is the cause of my starting problems, but my biggest problem is what caused the relay to be fried. Any help will be greatly appreciated.
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File Type: jpg IMG_1895.jpg (37.1 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_1896.jpg (42.7 KB, 29 views)
File Type: jpg IMG_1901.jpg (31.8 KB, 27 views)
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Old 09-13-2018, 11:15 AM   #2
Hondo
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

It doesn't appear to have melted. I had one of those do the same thing sitting in a box in the garage- made a mess of some other stuff in the box. Whatever epoxy they used to pot the electronics just gave up the ghost and turned to goo. Make sure your battery cables, and the big cable going down to the starter have good connections. Try unplugging and re-plugging the two rectangular bulkhead connectors coming through the firewall over by the heater box a few times and then try to start it. Can it be started by jumping the solenoid on the starter? If you can jump it at the starter solenoid and get it to turn over, then you need to check what the voltage is at the small wire on the starter solenoid when you turn the ignition key to the start position. You need at least 12 VDC down there to get the solenoid to pull in. If the starter doesn't engage when you try and jump it at the starter solenoid, you most likely have a dead starter. Just out of curiosity, what did you do when you "cleaned it up a little bit" ?
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1975 Scout II healthy 258, Wide T19 , 4:1 D300 3:54s,
1972 Real clean stock Scout II P/S, P/B, 345, T18, 3:73s
1969 Mach I. Balanced ported 351W, 650 double pumper, Super T10, Detroit locker with 4.11s. Lowered with racing springs, bars, Konis etc.
(Don't worry about getting arrested when I drive the Scouts).

Last edited by Hondo; 09-13-2018 at 12:23 PM..
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Old 09-13-2018, 01:04 PM   #3
Scoutboy74
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

That's an amplifier module for a Holley "gold box" primitive electronic ignition distributor. That piece isn't needed to make the starter motor engage, but if the aforementioned distributor is still in play, the engine isn't going to light off and run until you either replace that box or go with a Pertronix module. Hondo has you on the right track. Let us know when the starter is cranking again and we can discuss what to do about the other issue in more detail.
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Old 09-13-2018, 06:27 PM   #4
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Thanks Scoutboy74 & Hondo. I have not tried jumping across the starter yet. I will give that a try this weekend and post again to let you know the results.

If that does not work, I will get some more details from you all about the distributor and replacing the "gold box". Thanks again.
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Old 09-13-2018, 07:53 PM   #5
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

It would be good to make positive ID of your distributor with pictures of the cap removed. Just because the box was still attached to your firewall, doesn't mean it was being used. Lots of times, those boxes get left in place even after the spark system has been changed.
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Mongo - '71 1210 Std Cab 2WD - 345/TF727/RA17 D60 4.10 Trac-lok - "Mongo love candy! Duh, huh, huh!"
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Old 09-16-2018, 03:49 PM   #6
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

I finally got my honey do jobs done & got to my project!
Before I forget regarding the cleaning question. Nothing was done to the engine. Just cleaning windows, dash, etc....

I jumped across the starter and it cranked just fine. I did not have a voltage meter, but I assume because it cranked, it is good. I have attached a pic of the distributor. Any assistance is greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-16-2018, 06:18 PM   #7
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Not sure why the picture did not come out full size, but the distributor has a standard rotor button on it. What do I need to look for if it has been replaced?
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Old 09-16-2018, 08:04 PM   #8
Scoutboy74
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Pull the plastic dust cover off so we can see what's underneath.
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Favorite hobby...Driving Salma Hayek in my Scout

Coal Trickle - '99 Dodge Ram 2500 Q-Cab SWB 4x4 - 5.9L 24V CTD/NV4500
Hooty - '74 SII - 392/TF727/D20/3.73 D44's/Spartan FA/Krac-lok RA/RC 4" SUA/34x10.5 TSLs/33g Fuel/HFT 8k winch
Mongo - '71 1210 Std Cab 2WD - 345/TF727/RA17 D60 4.10 Trac-lok - "Mongo love candy! Duh, huh, huh!"
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:15 PM   #9
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Here is the updated pic of the distributor.
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:20 PM   #10
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Let's try this one more time for the updated pic!!
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Old 09-17-2018, 05:29 PM   #11
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

That is the Holley electronic distributor, the Holley "Gold Box" is mounted on the firewall adjacent to the DTM unit you removed and photographed previously.
The Gold Box may be burned out as leaving the key in the "run" position with the engine off will burn it out as it sometimes does to the DTM module as well.
As your Scout II has been sitting for 20 years, this may be the reason it was parked.
Who knows?
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Old 09-17-2018, 07:12 PM   #12
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Since you were able to start it when you got it, I doubt this problem is why it was parked. Were you able to get it to turn over using the key? Being able to jump the starter says the starter is good, and you probably have a poor connection someplace upstream. The bottom of the two rectangular bulkhead connectors should be the engine connector. did you try re-seating it? There are three of those connectors and they are all problematic.
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1975 Scout II healthy 258, Wide T19 , 4:1 D300 3:54s,
1972 Real clean stock Scout II P/S, P/B, 345, T18, 3:73s
1969 Mach I. Balanced ported 351W, 650 double pumper, Super T10, Detroit locker with 4.11s. Lowered with racing springs, bars, Konis etc.
(Don't worry about getting arrested when I drive the Scouts).
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:09 AM   #13
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Thanks for continuing to help me.

My Dad parked it because of a gas tank problem. He had a new plastic tank, but never bothered to put it on. It was running before it was parked way back when. I used to drive it myself. As a teenager back then, it was really great riding around with the top off.

And back to my problem. The key switch was working just fine, as I had taken it out on the road for a drive. It was just after I turned the engine off is when it would not make a sound when trying to start it back up.

I have not checked the connectors and will try that. Talking about the key switch --- are the key switches something that has been a problem on Scouts? After checking the connections and if it is still not starting, should I get a new replacement "gold box"?
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Old 09-18-2018, 11:49 AM   #14
Scoutboy74
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

If you want the engine to light off and run, you'll have to pursue one of several options which I'll outline in a bit. But, you've gotta crawl before you can walk, so your most immediate issue is getting the starter to engage reliably. Once that's solved, your options for making internal sparks include getting a replacement GB amplifier. Going this way assumes that the pickup module inside the distributor is still good. Option B would be to crap can the amp and the dist pickup and replace with the correct Pertronics module. Option C would be to swap in an IHC application breaker points distributor from a different Binder, or parts stash if you have it.
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Favorite hobby...Driving Salma Hayek in my Scout

Coal Trickle - '99 Dodge Ram 2500 Q-Cab SWB 4x4 - 5.9L 24V CTD/NV4500
Hooty - '74 SII - 392/TF727/D20/3.73 D44's/Spartan FA/Krac-lok RA/RC 4" SUA/34x10.5 TSLs/33g Fuel/HFT 8k winch
Mongo - '71 1210 Std Cab 2WD - 345/TF727/RA17 D60 4.10 Trac-lok - "Mongo love candy! Duh, huh, huh!"
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Old 09-19-2018, 05:25 AM   #15
kyscout
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Default Re: 1976 Scout Starting Problems

Got it. Thanks.

Is there any starter relays or fuseable links between key switch and the starter?
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