'64 C900 Starting Troubles


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Post Mon May 14, 2018 4:37 pm

'64 C900 Starting Troubles

Hoping to get some help with troubleshooting my issues. I've been having issues with the vehicle not starting. Initially, it began as a vehicle not charging and wouldn't start once stopped, unless I got a jump start and let it sit for a minute.

1. I started by checking for parasitic drain. (Removed the battery cable and hooked up Multimeter to the batter negative post and cable) No amperage was found.

2. I checked all of the batter and alternator wires and connections. Then checked the alternator for voltage drops on the positive and negative side of the alternator, didn't find any, but I did find a .4 V voltage drop on the chassis ground for the negative terminal. I cleaned the connections up and replaced it with a new 30" 2-Gauge wire, no more voltage drop.

3. The starter nut on the positive terminal was dirty and loose. Removed it, took wire brush to it and all the connectors off of it and tightened it up firmly.

4. After doing all of this one evening I was driving and the lights suddenly got really bright, and then they dimmed and the needle on the ammeter dropped to a little below halfway on the Draining side (Also note, the ammeter was bouncing all over the place this whole ride. After that the alternator would only put out about 12.2V. Frustrated at this point I ordered a new alternator and voltage regulator. After installing I'm back at 14.3 V charging and put in a new battery as well.

5. The truck still won't start the majority of the time, it has a full batter and voltage only drops to 12.01 from 12.5 when I try to start it. No sound comes from the starter.

6. When I park the truck and shut it off, usually I can wait a few minutes sit there and it cranks. When I come back it won't even try to turn over, but the battery is reading good.

Now I'm stumped, my next guess is the ground on the starter? I was going to run cable direct from the negative terminal of the battery to the starter ground, but wasn't sure where to go after that.

On a side note, Temp sensor had been working fine and is stuck on "C" (with ignition on) and my oil pressure sensor which had been working fine is stuck on "H" when the ignition is turned on. These started about a month or two ago. Just in case they might be related.
1964 International C900 Pickup
1987 Subaru RX-Turbo
2017 Subaru WRX

Yard Art
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Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2012 9:12 pm

Location: Western North Carolina

Post Tue May 15, 2018 2:27 am

Re: '64 C900 Starting Troubles

Kudos for the fine troubleshooting and work accomplished so far.
Obviously you have more than one issue and you have corrected many.
A C900 should have the 4-152 engine & 3-speed manual transmission, or it may have been upgraded to the 4-196 engine.
If it has something different, let us know please.

Next, remove the starter and have the starter tested.
It may need rebuilt or just cleaned up and reinstalled.
Be sure the mating surfaces of the starter/block and the bolts/holes are clean for good electrical ground.
But for sure, service the solenoid or replace it with a new solenoid.
A HD solenoid is available for these GM style starters. Only the nose piece is different from the GM starters.
The solenoid contact disk can be flipped over for a fresh contact area.
Another common issue with these IH starters is the wiring at the solenoid gets overheated and gets crispy due to the heat from the nearby exhaust pipe (on the I-4 and V-8 engines),...and age in general.
Repair/replace that wiring and protect it from heat.

The battery (-) terminal should go directly to the cylinder head bolt. Be sure that is cleaned as well. I like to upgrade the battery cables to a "2" gauge cable or better. A "0" gauge cable size is even better in my opinion.
Also a "10" gauge ground wire goes from the Battery (-) terminal to the inner fender for body ground, check it for good contact. You can run an additional "2" gauge ground wire from the engine block to the frame if you wish.

Your gauge problem is typically dirty connections and the CVR that provided 5 VDC to the instruments.
The CVR (constant voltage regulator) is a small metal box on the back side of the instrument panel that steps down the 12 VDC to 5 VDC to power the gauges (except the ammeter which is direct reading). It may be faulty and can be replaced with a new electro-mechanical CVR or a new electronic CVR.

Another common issue is the firewall mounted bulkhead connector (BHC) where the wiring enters the cab.
Disconnect the battery and disconnect the BHC and clean the contacts.
If any wiring is burnt or overheated, repair or replace as necessary.
Reinstall the BHC and seal against moisture.

Good luck and let us know how you do.
My Junk --> 1975 IH Model 200HD, 1 ton 4x4 truck, 392, 4 speed, etc.
My cave location --> Western North Carolina
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Post Mon May 21, 2018 3:47 pm

Re: '64 C900 Starting Troubles

Much appreciated, I like to try to figure out as much of it as I can when possible.

Haha, that might as well be the motto of my truck: "Has more than one issue, already fixed a ton of issues."

I do indeed have the anemic 4-152 paired to the T-13 Trans.

I pulled the solenoid and the copper contact plate was very pitted and worn, so I went ahead and ordered a new one to replace it. I'll be installing it tonight and replacing the wire this weekend just to be safe, and adding some heat insulation to the wiring.

Currently my (-) terminal is a new AWG #2 wire that grounds to the alternator bracket on the drivers side of the vehicle, should I relocate it? I don't have the 10 gauge ground wire to the inner fender but will add one this weekend.

I will take a look at my connections and at the CVR. If I find the CVR is the issue, is there one that is a direct fit part to replace the original? The BHC's are one of the next things I plan to check out, as they never seemed to be in all that good of shape to me.

The only other issue I can think of at the moment is that the speedometer and odometer do not work at all (also they have no light that I can see).

Thanks again for the help! I will update after I have gone through all of this.
1964 International C900 Pickup
1987 Subaru RX-Turbo
2017 Subaru WRX
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Post Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:24 am

Re: '64 C900 Starting Troubles

In reference to the gauges. My fuel level and ammeter work fine, Speedo, oil pressure, and coolant temp not so much. I know you said the ammeter reads direct, but is the fuel level sensor tied into the CVR as well? I noticed looking at the back of the oil and temp gauges that they have a wire jumping across the two of them. Is there a shared circuit here separate from the other gauges?

If there was a failure of the coolant temp sensor would that affect both?
1964 International C900 Pickup
1987 Subaru RX-Turbo
2017 Subaru WRX

Yard Art
Yard Art

Posts: 86

Joined: Sun Dec 16, 2012 9:12 pm

Location: Western North Carolina

Post Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:44 am

Re: '64 C900 Starting Troubles

Three (3) gauges receive 5V power from the CVR: Oil Pressure, Coolant Temp and Fuel Quantity.

Ammeter reads direct from the alternator.
It is not connected to the CVR.

I would check/test/replace as necessary the wiring and senders of the oil pressure and water temp indication systems.

Water temp sender is in the thermostat housing, oil pressure sender is in the engine block, left side, aft.
The failure of one indication should not effect the others.

Also, carefully disconnect and clean the bulkhead connectors as mentioned earlier,...AFTER disconnecting the battery.

The Speedometer is driven directly from the transmission output shaft area by a cable.
It does not get any power from the CVR.
My Junk --> 1975 IH Model 200HD, 1 ton 4x4 truck, 392, 4 speed, etc.
My cave location --> Western North Carolina
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Post Tue Jun 19, 2018 8:28 am

Re: '64 C900 Starting Troubles

Thanks for the info! I wanted to clarify to make sure that I was understanding correctly and to rule out the CVR since the Fuel Gauge was functioning.

I have already replaced the wiring and connectors for both sending units as well as a new oil pressure sending unit.

Bulkhead connectors will be getting cleaned tonight and hopefully that does the trick.
1964 International C900 Pickup
1987 Subaru RX-Turbo
2017 Subaru WRX

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