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Old 11 February 2008, 11:21   #1
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15hp Johnson Tiller/Elec Wiring question

Let me start by apologizing in advance for the Newb-ness of my question but I am in fact a Newb. I recently purchased said outboard for use on my Mercury340 sport (Yes, not a RIB per se). Used it twice in the fall and winterized before putting it away. Spring is coming and i'd like to use the electric start and charging capability. I already purchased a 20 amp motorcycle type battery. My question is this: There are only two wires comingout of the engine. Red and black with ring terminals at the end. I hooked them up to the battery (motor on a stand and in a barrel) and it turned over right away which I did not expect. The manual that came with the motor shows a switch/ starter circuit. So I expected the motor would not start until I found and pushed the button (doh!). Guess i should have looked first cause there is no button and the solenoid does its thing as soon as I complete the battery hookup. What gives? I know I could put a switch in the red cable but how would the motor charge up the battery with a switch blocking it and more importantly I assume as long as the battery is connected in that fashion the starter will just keep on starting (not so good on a running engine). Am I missing a wire or two? Should there only be two wires coming from the engine? How does the motor charge the battery from the same two wires?

Again I apologize but I am a little stumped. As best as I can make out from the schematic in the manual there appears to be two separate circuits. One cgoing from "charging output to the battery to ground (PVC boat no ground. Grounded back to the motor?) and one going from hot to switch to starter to ground. The output of the charger has an always completed ciruit the starter has a usually open. Is this right it makes sense sort of but that means something is missing in my set up. Oh yes, and there is a loop on the outboard that looks like a ring terminal. Could this be for common ground? Very much obliged for all that take the time to help this Newb across the pond.
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Old 11 February 2008, 21:41   #2
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Know i'm probably being a bit impatient, but I was kind of hoping someone could steer me in th right direction? Anyone?
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Old 12 February 2008, 01:57   #3
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It sounds like the 2 wires you have coming out are just connected to the starter motor-in which case your charging system may not be connected and you may not have a starter solenoid.

Have a look under the cover,see what you can find and maybe post a pic of under there (both sides of the engine would be useful).
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Old 12 February 2008, 09:33   #4
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Will do (pictures). Not sure how to post them or even if I can (is there a limitation on the number of posts one needs before he is able to post a picture (some forums have a minimum requirement)). I thought something might be missing. I'm at work now and I know there is a time difference. I won't be home for at least 10 hours.

As a side note, is it unusual for an electric start motor to come wired in this fashion or is it a case of the previous owner doing a modification. It just seems that anyone who goes through the trouble of seting up an electric start outboard especially at that size, would want to have it set up to charge the battery.

Oh, last question, would the starter solenoid be attached to the starter and readily identifiable as such. I assumed there was a solenoid but in hindsight if the engine started right up there may not be one. I don't recall the starter gear being in direct contact with the flywheel before I connected the battery. The solenoid, if I am not mistaken, is the part that pushes the gear into position to start the engine. *It may help me to know what i'm looking at when I get in tonight.

Thanks again for your trouble and patience.

Sinistre1.

P.S.

Nos4r2, I am a bit deficient in foreign terminology. What does sheep worrying mean? Couldn't help but wonder when I saw it in your profile and it gave me pause! Lol.
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Old 12 February 2008, 10:07   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinistre1 View Post
Will do (pictures). Not sure how to post them or even if I can (is there a limitation on the number of posts one needs before he is able to post a picture (some forums have a minimum requirement)). I thought something might be missing. I'm at work now and I know there is a time difference. I won't be home for at least 10 hours.
No limits, just use the 'manage attachments' bit when you post.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinistre1 View Post
As a side note, is it unusual for an electric start motor to come wired in this fashion or is it a case of the previous owner doing a modification. It just seems that anyone who goes through the trouble of seting up an electric start outboard especially at that size, would want to have it set up to charge the battery.
It's not usual, but it may be that a previous owner has had all the electrics on the boat rather than the engine.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinistre1 View Post
Oh, last question, would the starter solenoid be attached to the starter and readily identifiable as such. I assumed there was a solenoid but in hindsight if the engine started right up there may not be one. I don't recall the starter gear being in direct contact with the flywheel before I connected the battery. The solenoid, if I am not mistaken, is the part that pushes the gear into position to start the engine. *It may help me to know what i'm looking at when I get in tonight.
The solenoid is electrical-It'll be bolted to the main positive power wire for the starter and will have 3 or 4 wires attached-2 will be bolt terminals.
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Nos4r2, I am a bit deficient in foreign terminology. What does sheep worrying mean? Couldn't help but wonder when I saw it in your profile and it gave me pause! Lol.
If you were a sheep, what would worry you?
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Old 12 February 2008, 11:43   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sinistre1 View Post
As a side note, is it unusual for an electric start motor to come wired in this fashion or is it a case of the previous owner doing a modification. It just seems that anyone who goes through the trouble of seting up an electric start outboard especially at that size, would want to have it set up to charge the battery.
My engine is a similar size but not a Johnson. It certainly had two fairly large cables which connect to the battery and charge it - and a separate wiring "loom" for other things - including, IIRC activating the starter motor.

Could this engine have been used as an auxilliary/donkey/trolling engine in its previous life? where the main engine may be used to charge the battery and this only needed electric start? just a suggestion.
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Old 13 February 2008, 00:59   #7
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These pictures are lousy. Need to borrow a camera or get a photo editing program to resize from my camera. Anyway...
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Old 13 February 2008, 01:02   #8
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three more> maybe two with a duplicate. It's late I see extra wiring in the middle shot that I didn't see before. That is probably the solenoid wiring. Outboard stand was crap. Tipped over and the motor dropped about three feet to the ground (standing height of the motor. Did I trash it This all seems so easy in the brochures.
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Old 13 February 2008, 05:12   #9
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It looks like everything's there under the hood. I can see a starter solenoid and wires from a charging system,along with possibly a voltage rectifier.

You really need to get a manual now and trace that wiring back.
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Old 13 February 2008, 06:23   #10
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Quick silly question - is there a starter switch hiding round the front somewhere? May seem like a daft question, but my old Suzuki had a blanking plate where If I had the tiller steer electric start model the ignition switch would be fitted. I had the remote version, so a plastic blanking cap was fitted. My current yam the "local" controls are buried under the front of the engine and not immediately obvious, but it's been designed as mainly remote control, so the local (emergency) stuff is hidden.

A pic of the front of the engine (i.e from where you would be standing in the boat) might give a clue as to whether it has a "local" go button, and / or show traces of any remote control cable exits.

Is there a big multi pole connector somewhere under the lid? That would give a clue as to whether it was on a remote key or not.
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