Lotus Elan

Keeping Solenoid with High Torque Starter

PostPost by: William2 » Thu Nov 19, 2015 10:50 am

I am about to wire up my new high torque starter in the following way. Keep the existing solenoid the same and connect the main starter feed wire as normal to the new starter motor. Piggy back the solenoid switching wire running a new wire to the starter motor solenoid.
This has several advantages: no change to existing solenoid wiring and it also makes use of this solenoid still.
Also means that you are still switching the feed to the new starter motor rather than having a live battery wire to the starter motor all the time (should you ever get a short circuit to the starter motor itself if the wire should ever touch the engine block, etc).
The only downside I can think of is that the ignition switch is now having to switch on 2 solenoids one after the other but I assume the switch is well able to take this low current. Out of interest I intend to measure how much current each solenoid takes.
Does the above sound ok or have I missed something??
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Thu Nov 19, 2015 11:50 am

Sounds O.K but why not just connect the new starter solenoid to the heavy starter wire,then just have one heavy wire going to the starter as before..

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PostPost by: elanman999 » Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:05 pm

+1 for John's method. It's worked for me for the last 10+ years and as with my Powerlite starter the main terminal is very near the sump it's the only safe way to do it.
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PostPost by: Chancer » Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:06 pm

Exactly what I would do.

I would also carry a small extension cable with the right terminals in case the OE solenoid were ever to fail, it would be easy to remove the link wire from the pre-engaged starter, extend the solenoid wire to the pre_engaged solenoid and then bolt both starter leads to the same terminal on the defunct OE solenoid.

It would also look more original.

When I saw the photo on the other thread with a huge exposed live terminal on a pre engaged starter I thought that is just an accident or worse still a fire waiting to happen.
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PostPost by: ericbushby » Thu Nov 19, 2015 12:32 pm

There is no need to connect the solenoid wires together.
The new solenoid will pick up its power supply from the main starter cable when the original solenoid closes.
It comes wired that way.
I just thought though, that my comments apply to the Powerlite model and you don`t say which one you decided on.
With the powerlite, the old wire will reach the terminal on the new starter so there is nothing to do: just one nut. Well mine did.
Let us know how it works.
Eric in Burnley
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PostPost by: William2 » Thu Nov 19, 2015 6:31 pm

I decided to go for one of Sue Millers ones. I think it is a Wasp model. So it sounds like I just take the original thick starter motor cable to the new starter and that's it.
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PostPost by: TroonSprint » Thu Nov 19, 2015 7:31 pm

You should have got a sheet of instructions with the Wosp starter (I did) which clearly tells how to wire it both using the original solenoid and also by-passing it. If you didn't get that sheet I can scan it and attach it to a future message.

Mike
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PostPost by: vxah » Fri Nov 20, 2015 8:26 am

After running my pre-engaged starter and keeping the original solenoid I changed things during a bit of a rebuild,
I made up a link between the two solenoid terminals out of sheet metal and painted it black so you have to look to see it, took a spur off the solenoid wire and ran it to the new starter solenoid terminal and left the ground wire off from the original solenoid so it no longer functions. Obviously no performance improvement but I have to say to have lost that "CLUNK" when turning the key is worth the work!!
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PostPost by: EPA » Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:20 am

Its very useful to retain the original solenoid as you can still use it to turn the engine over when doing any work. I Just connected both heavy cables together by putting them both on the same stud of the solenoid and ran a new cable from the other stud to the starter solenoid. This way the old solenoid doesn't take the full load but you can still press the button to turn over the engine.
Ed
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:36 am

If you're lucky enough to have a red-button solenoid....

John :wink:
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PostPost by: vxah » Fri Nov 20, 2015 11:10 am

72... no button :(
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PostPost by: EPA » Fri Nov 20, 2015 11:59 am

A didn't realise later cars didn't have the button - I have never had a close look at any other +2 and mine is from 1968.
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PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Fri Nov 20, 2015 12:26 pm

Mine is a '68 and didn't have one till I spotted one at the local autojumble...makes turning the engine from the engine bay a lot easier...

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