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A friend of mine is having an electrical problem with his 69 Coronet 383.  He posted his problem in the "engine/drivetrain" forum, but i wanted to repost it here for him also.  I have tried to help him out with the issue since he is not very knowledgable about Mopars.  I was unable to rectify the situation, so i'm asking for help since i'm lost!!  doh He lives in northern Jersey (Hoboken, NJ),  i was wondering if anyone knows of any automotive electrical shops where he can take it to get fixed.  We are both frustrated with the situation and really want to get it fixed.  ANY help or additional suggestions would be very much appreciated!  THANK YOU!!  tnku Here is what he posted in the other forum...


I have a 1969 Dodge Coronet with a 383.  When I got the car year ago, it would start but the lights would be dim, the turn signals wouldn't flash (just stay on) and the alternator guage would just stay in the middle and not charge the battery.  After some investigation, it was discovered that the voltage regulator and keyswitch were burnt out (bypassed these two and started the car from the engine compartment).  They were replaced and the car started right up with the key.  However, after idling the car for a few minutes, something must have caught because the lights all of a sudden got very bright and the alternator guage went up to full charge - this all happened for about 3 seconds.  The lights then went back to being dim (flickering) but the engine still idled fine.  Afterwards, the car wouldn't start again with the key (leading me to believe that the keyswitch and voltage regulator are burnt out again).
My next step was to find someone to replace the entire wiring harness, however that can be costly and time consuming.
Any ideas on what the issue might be?  Know of anyone in the Northern New Jersey area who could fix this issue? Thanks!
 

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Start with all the basics. How's the battery, is it fully charged? Get ahold of a volt meter, check the voltage of the battery while it's sitting, while cranking and with the motor running. Check the voltage at the back of the alternator, the big power wire, compare to the battery voltage. They should be very close at all times. Check the amp meter and it's wiring very carefully, check all the bulkhead/firewall wiring and all grounds (making sure the motor/body/battery are all connected).

One bad connection or ground (or even a short) can cause all kinds of weird problems. If the switch and voltage reg are getting fried, I'd guess there's a short or problem in the wire supply voltage to the reg or alternator field wires. It's fairly easy to pull all the tape off the alternator wires, up to the reg, check all those.
 

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If your looking to keep it stock then disregard the rest of this reply. I got disgusted with Chrysler's interpretation of charging a car. I put a single wire Chevy alternator in it and have never had a problem with chargin my car since. Did this about 10 years ago. Don't much care for Chevy's but their alternators are very good. Not to mention it cleans up the wiring in the engine compartment considerably. It also bolted right into the original spot with very little fabricating. The only issue with a single wire alternator is you need to add a switch of some sort to cut off the alternator's charge wire because its voltage sensor is on the same wire as the charge terminal so it will kill the battery if its not disconnected.
 

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Make certain all the grounds are clean and free of dirt, paint, goop etc., the urn signals not flashing and just staying on sounds like it may be the turn signal switch in the column, or the flasher(usually under the dash or under the drivers side kick panel. Take your time and go through the electrical system and clean each connection up, and make sure they are grounded properly. An electrical schematic also comes in handy, try looking for the service maintanance manual for that year or get ahold of Jim Lusk on the board for a copy of the electrical schematics on CD.
Hope this helps, I know it did the job for me when I was having problems with my Dart. ;)
Shawn
 

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This DEFINITELY sounds like a grounding problem
Jim []{}
 
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