1996 Seay RAy 175 Serious Electrical Issues

Discussion in 'Electrical Stuff' started by Tony Walton, Sep 17, 2019.

  1. Tony Walton

    Tony Walton New Member

    4
    Sep 17, 2019
    1996 Seay Ray BowRider 175
    4.3 Mercruiser with Alpha I drive
    Hey all, newby to the forum and newby to owning a boat. I've spent a lot of time in the sun on my boat over the past few weeks, unfortunately not on the water.

    I bought the boat as a project. Has an inboard 4.3 that didn't run when I got it. The long block and intake were tranplanted from a 1990 Chaparral and all other electrical components were transferred over from the 1996 4.3. Overall, a pretty clean job for what I know about boats.

    A carb rebuild, new plugs & wires, fuel pump, oil change and fresh gas and I was able to get it to fire and run pretty decent. I replaced the gauge oil sender and fuel sender to get the gauges working but the volt gauge didn't seem to be working.

    The alternator wasn't charging so I replaced that as part of an electrical system clean up. This is where the trouble started. Before starting it after the alternator replacement, I cleaned up some wire routing and replaced some component terminals with weather-seal terminals. I had a couple of stray black wires that I assumed were ground wires so connected them to the ground junction in the center rear of the engine compartment.

    After doing all of this, I went to reconnect the battery at which time the two wires I connected to the ground block immediately smoked and glowed from the block into the engine harness. I thought maybe they were powered circuits that had black wires for some reason but I traced them into the engine harness to the ground junction for all engine components. I'm really puzzled as to why they lit up like a fuse given they were indeed ground wires that I essentially re-grounded to the block.

    After cleaning that up, I discovered the guy I got it from didn't add the 90A fuse at the starter and had the 50A circuit breaker red wires connected without a breaker. I bought new ones and installed them per factory wiring.

    I now have no power to gauges or starter when I turn the ignition switch on/crank. The switches for the bilge pump and fan are lit and both work with key on. The outdrive will go up and down. I wiggled the shifter around while cranking and nothing. I flipped the emergency kill switch while cranking and nothing. Although I've read that neither of these would affect the gauges.

    I jumped the secondary solenoid and the engine cranks but no fuel pump or spark which is probably normal. I bought a new secondary solenoid and ignition switch but the problem still exists. I found a wiring diagram for the engine online and everything is connected correctly as far as I can tell.

    Back to the ground issue. I got the meter out and have continuity from the engine harness to the battery. I have no resistance through the connector or through the harness on the engine side to ground (with the master connector disconnected).

    I have no resistance on the body harness side through the ground terminal on the connector. However, I have over 4 ohms of resistance from the ground wire just past the body side engine harness connector to the battery.

    This is where I'm lost. I can't find a wiring diagram to show me the wire routing once it leaves the engine harness connector so don't know where to look or what may be the issue. The harness disappears deep into the engine compartment and I'd rather not tear it all apart to trace it's routing if I can help it. A wiring diagram would be very helpful here.

    I bought this boat super cheap and really want to get it on the water but I've exhausted my knowledge of boats and hours of online searching are yielding no results. The fuse and circuit breaker were necessary. The solenoid and ignition switch were cheap so worth a shot but I don't want to keep throwing parts at it hoping to fix it. I'm a little concerned that I reversed polarity and smoked some expensive components but that doesn't make sense given I grounded wires that were already grounded, which also doesn't make sense.

    So...1 - Does anyone have the diagram that includes everything beyond the engine harness? 2 - Any ideas on where to look next.
     
  2. Tony Walton

    Tony Walton New Member

    4
    Sep 17, 2019
    1996 Seay Ray BowRider 175
    4.3 Mercruiser with Alpha I drive
    Man...54 views and nothing?

    Can anyone tell me if the Mercruiser Shop Manual has all inclusive wiring diagrams? And if so, what version (I've seen #18 and #25) I need for my boat?

    Or what about the Clymer/Haynes manuals? They say complete electrical schematics but has anyone used one one that can confirm?
     
  3. JimG

    JimG Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Nov 4, 2008
    Southern WV
    2007 310 DA
    Kohler 5ECD
    Twin 350 Mags
    Raw Water Cooled
    V-Drives
    Obviously those black wires you grounded were not ground. It's hard to tell what they were and what you have now fried.

    I looked on the Sea Ray website and they have your manual, but the schematics are not included. You might try contacting Sea Ray directly and see if they can get your schematics.

    Best of luck and welcome to CSR!
     
  4. scoflaw

    scoflaw Well-Known Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    cape cod mass, cape coral fl
    1999 Powerquest legend 260 sx
    502 mpi Bravo 1
    Don't have your diagram but I can say.
    Red is battery hot and goes to the 50 amp breaker and leaves as Red/purple, which now is fused 12v.
    The r/p on your key switch leaves as y/r and goes to your slave sol.
    the slave has r/p wire which is hot and is triggered by the y/r coming from the key switch.
    This sends 12v. to the starter from the larger y/r wire coming from the slave. Slave also has a ground wire. The purple wire coming from the ign. switch send 12v to your coil.

    Concern yourself with this to get your engine running. The rest of those wires at the cannon plug don't matter right now. The wire colors have been the same for years
     
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2019
  5. NorCal Boater

    NorCal Boater Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Jan 24, 2008
    Covington, LA
    Cobalt CM23
    GM SB 383" Stroker" Alpha Gen I
    From experience I can tell you this is what we get when we buy "project boats" for a "great price." I've been there. You say you can't find the wiring diagram for the boat. Did you try looking for the wiring diagram as a Mercruiser schematic?

    Click on this link....
    https://www.bing.com/images/search?...6324B189D98E1374AAA06ED7894E7DA70&FORM=IQFRBA

    This will bring up multiple diagrams for a Mercruiser 4.3 V-6 engine. Mercruiser has used the same wiring and color scheme for years. Five years ago I bought a 1985 23' Cobalt that I had owned 20 years earlier. It was a project but I had intimate knowledge of the boat and was pretty sure I could make her healthy again. But in those 20 years much had been changed or altered. the wiring was a train wreck with loose, dead-end wires everywhere. I had the Cobalt wire diagram for the boat but not the engine and components. I printed one of the diagrams from the link above (except I was using a 5.7/260 diagram). After months of trying to trace crap down I went from the big round Merc plug and started over with new, color-correct wire and connectors. Sometimes that is the best way as YOU will know what you have going forward. Right now all you really have is a hope that the last guy that worked on it did it all correct. Unfortunately you need to assume he didn't. While in those diagrams you can also search for "4.3 Gauge diagram. That is where I got the one below. For your gauge issue you either don't have a ground connected to the gauges or a power source. The power source usually comes from the ignition switch.

    [​IMG]

    Be patient, don't rush and check everything 2-3 times. You'll get there.

    Lastly, remember this....There is never time to do it right but always time to do it over.
    Shawn
     
  6. Tony Walton

    Tony Walton New Member

    4
    Sep 17, 2019
    1996 Seay Ray BowRider 175
    4.3 Mercruiser with Alpha I drive
    Thanks for the information guys. Appreciate the insight and comments. The two stray black wires traced back to the junction in the center of the diagram so I'm certain they are grounds. The 4 ohms of resistance is happening on the exiting side of the cannon, terminal 1.

    upload_2019-9-19_14-24-31.png

    I traced every circuit on the engine side and believe they are wired correctly but I do need to know where the two stray grounds are supposed to connect to so a recheck and a recheck and a recheck are in order. The alternator ground point was a bit confusing to me but I ended up connecting it to the "E" terminal on the back of the alternator.

    Thanks for the direction on finding diagrams. I'll follow the wire flow and gauge diagram provided but I still need to find out where else the ground from terminal 1 out of the cannon spreads to. I feel like a component is shorted on that side of the cannon, in turn causing the resistance in the ground circuit. Just not sure which one.

    BTW, I do have the original engine, intake, carb and accessory brackets that I intend on getting back in it after going through it but that's won't solve the issue I'm having right now.

    I'll dig in and report back.
     
  7. scoflaw

    scoflaw Well-Known Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    cape cod mass, cape coral fl
    1999 Powerquest legend 260 sx
    502 mpi Bravo 1
    Some engines, like mine, just have a couple of black ground wires that go nowhere. I would be less concerned with ohm testing and just get it fired up.
     
  8. JimG

    JimG Well-Known Member SILVER Sponsor

    Nov 4, 2008
    Southern WV
    2007 310 DA
    Kohler 5ECD
    Twin 350 Mags
    Raw Water Cooled
    V-Drives
    If the 2 black wires were indeed ground, then I say you don't have a proper ground strap on your engine block. The small wires burned up when they tried to ground the block.
     
  9. scoflaw

    scoflaw Well-Known Member

    Aug 10, 2011
    cape cod mass, cape coral fl
    1999 Powerquest legend 260 sx
    502 mpi Bravo 1
    To much emphasis on these 2 small wires, the engine can be started without them. The neg. battery cables bolt directly to the block, so nothing can be grounded unless they are attached.
     
  10. Tony Walton

    Tony Walton New Member

    4
    Sep 17, 2019
    1996 Seay Ray BowRider 175
    4.3 Mercruiser with Alpha I drive

    I verified the ground cable had a clean tight connection between the battery and block so should be covered there. I’ll be digging in this weekend to verify the primary engine circuits to see if I can get it to fire up.
     

Share This Page

Show Sidebar