View Full Version : No power to starter motor "exciter" wire

01-05-2013, 01:30 PM
Tried to fire our engine this afternoon but the starter motor isn't kicking in (after an angine change). When the ignition key is turned the first click, the fuel pumps kicks in and the throttle resets, but when I move to the second click to turn the engine over nothing happens.

The batteries are in good / charged order. There is power getting to the main starter motor feed, but there is no power going to the exciter wire when the key is turned (the smaller wire on the starter motor). I have also checked the circuit breakers and the kill switch with a multi-meter and there's power to both.

I have posted elsewhere on the forum that I haven't been able to find a connector for the crank position sensor, could the problem be the ECU not sensing a CPS and therefore not letting the starter motor turn?

The boat is a 2005 XStar with 350 MCX Indmar (GM) engine.

I'm out of ideas, any suggestions?

01-05-2013, 01:50 PM
safety Lanyard attached? have to ask?

neutral lockout working correctly? move throttle forward back try to start...check wire connections on lockout switch.

Jump safety lanyard as a possible solution.

You can also jump the neutral safety safety lockout on tranny or you can check continuity - switch should show closed circuit in neutral....iirc.

Worthing skier
01-05-2013, 05:22 PM

I do not have knowledge of this exact model ,however I have never known an MPI system to not allow the engine to crank.
Maybe go back to basics , check for a crank feed from the back of the ign switch when in crank position , then go to the gearbox inhibitor switch and check for continuity and then to the starter relay which then should go the starter solenoid .
Lanyard should only stop engine running not stop it cranking .

If you cannot see any cam or crank angle sensors fitted the I would expect the MPI trigger to be picked up from the distributor .

hope this helps


01-05-2013, 05:47 PM
Cheers for responses. I'll have a look at the neutral selector tomorrow and check continuity through the circuit. I have checked the kill switch (the lanyard is attached and I've checked continuity between the posts on the switch).

01-05-2013, 06:42 PM
Crankshaft position sensor will not prevent the engine from cranking over, now the crank sensor will probably prevent the engine from starting once you get it cranked over...

01-05-2013, 08:13 PM
My guess is the solenoid.

01-06-2013, 11:55 AM
Thanks for your opinions, turned out the gearbox forward / reverse selector wasn't set correctly, the switch though it was in gear, hence no power to the exciter wire on the starter motor.

01-06-2013, 12:17 PM
Glad you got it figured out.

01-06-2013, 12:56 PM
yeah!!!! love a quick fix...

01-06-2013, 02:02 PM
The kinds of fixes that don't cost any money are always the best! Cheers :)