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Melted wire (pics included) DBElectrical mini-starter
#1
Gurus,

Any idea what would cause my 12V starter wire to melt? I had it zip-tied to the negative starter cable and every spot where it was touching it is melted and had exposed wires. The negative starter cable is untouched.

Background: This is a DBElectrical mini-high torque starter that I've had in my 72 coupe for 2 or 3 months. I noticed in the last 2 or 3 times on the road it was not starting as quick as normal...typically when I stopped briefly and it didn't cool down. I figured I had carburetor drama but it wasn't until I inspected the cable that I saw it was tore up.

I had since installed a 6 gauge wire in it's place (yes, 6 gauge) just in case the electrical gremlims are having a field day. No other wires on my solenoid are bad (coil, electric fan, etc).

Any ideas what could have caused this mess? I'm pretty confident all the grounds in my car are good to go.

-KR

   
   
   

-Former 70 & 72 Mustang Owner.
-69 Torino GT, Formal Roof, 351W, Edelbrock 600 cfm, Edelbrock 351W Performer RPM intake, headers, AOD trans, dual flowmasters w/H pipe, Pertronix II Billet, 3.5 TRACLOC g/r, 15" Magnum 500s, 100A alt, aluminum radiator, electric fan, Pro-car seats, mini-starter...owned since Dec 13.
-70 Mach 1, 351W, Edelbrock E-Street EFI, VHX instrument cluster, Hooker headers, dual flowmasters, Pertronix II, 15" Magnum 500s, 150A alt, aluminum radiator, dual electric fans, Pro-car seats, mini-starter
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#2
Uh oh. I bought a DB mini starter too but haven't installed yet.

So that's a 6ga in the pics that melted?

[Image: 386_07_10_13_5_58_42.jpeg]
My Mustangs:
71 M-code Mach 1, Medium Blue/White Sport, 4R70W, 3L50, Factory Ram Air.
72 Q-code Mach 1, Pewter/Black Sport, 4-spd, 3L25.
65 Convertible, Britney Blue/White/White, more modified than original.
05 Convertible, Legend Lime/Tan/Tan, future classic??
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#3
Don,

The cable that is melted in the pictures is either a 12 or 10 gauge cable and it comes with the mini-starter. It's definitely not very heavy duty. I went to Lowe's and got the 6 gauge cable (thick) and autozone to get the eyelet ends for it. I would have preferred an 8 gauge cable, but Lowe's didn't have any and I thought 10 gauge was about what I had melted already.

Not sure why it melted. The only thing out of the ordinary on my car is a 100 amp single wire alternator, electric fan and Pertronix III ignitor in a standard dizzy.

Ken

-Former 70 & 72 Mustang Owner.
-69 Torino GT, Formal Roof, 351W, Edelbrock 600 cfm, Edelbrock 351W Performer RPM intake, headers, AOD trans, dual flowmasters w/H pipe, Pertronix II Billet, 3.5 TRACLOC g/r, 15" Magnum 500s, 100A alt, aluminum radiator, electric fan, Pro-car seats, mini-starter...owned since Dec 13.
-70 Mach 1, 351W, Edelbrock E-Street EFI, VHX instrument cluster, Hooker headers, dual flowmasters, Pertronix II, 15" Magnum 500s, 150A alt, aluminum radiator, dual electric fans, Pro-car seats, mini-starter
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#4
Cable was sized too small for the amps of the starter I would say and perhaps your timing is advanced too much creating more load than normal?
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#5
I'd agree that wire looks far too small. and as far as it being bare where the zip ties were, thats just because of the extra tension on the wire from the ties and not related to the wires failure.
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#6
Rule of thumb. 14ga-15 amps, 12ga-20amps, 10ga-30amps, 8ga-45amps, anyway you need a 2ga from battery negative to frame and the same from positve to solenoid and solenoid to starter.
Those pictures also demonstrate a very good likeness of why you never put the positive on the battery until you test for shorts. That's what your shorted wires will look like.

[Image: 2rr7aiv.png]

Just cruising along minding our own business when BAM!!! The LAWS show up.
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#7
Was that the main feed wire or the solenoid trigger wire? If it was the solenoid wire, was it zip tied to the main hot wire for the starter or was it actually zip tied to a GROUND? Never tie hot wires to a ground, it's asking for a major short if the insulation wears through.

If that was the main power feed to the starter, then it was woefully undersized.

1973 Mach 1 Q code 351 4V, 9A paint, standard interior, 3.50 rear, C6 trans.
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#8
+ 1 with too light of wire
ALSO do not use home electrical wire

Go get some starter cable - it has a better covering
Most home wiring is good to 105C = 221 F

Ohio Mustang Supply
440-949-2556

[Image: oms_sig_banner.jpg]
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#9
Pretty much what everyone else has said, That is definitely way too small. I would do what Mark suggested..return that 6ga and get a 2ga solenoid to starter cable and all will be good to go.
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#10
When you buy your wire look at the ends. There should be at least a hundred or so individual small wires all twisted together. The more small wires the better it can carry the load without the heat. That's why welding leads have about a 500 super small individual wires twisted together in 1 insulation sheild.

[Image: 2rr7aiv.png]

Just cruising along minding our own business when BAM!!! The LAWS show up.
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