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  1. #1
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    Default Wires in outdrive

    The tilt/trim switch doesn't work on my boat. But I think it may have to do with the wires sticking out of it. I believe it's a 1979 Mercruiser V8 350 HP. (I bought a starter for it yesterday, based on the bad one i pulled out) I will verify the SN tomorrow. Are there alot of wires in the outdrive? It's 2 pairs of wire coming out of each side of the cavity. They're black all the same color. Its length looks like they fit around the part that moves left to right, in the cavity. If I connect them together would it work? Not that I will. The wires are in our hands in the picture. Any help is appreciated. Thanks

    Last edited by Don S; May 1st, 2010 at 09:04 AM. Reason: Changed picture to link. Too big

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    they are for the trim gauge sender and trim limit switch

    you need new ones you will need to pull the drive and bell housing i have done them without removing the drive and bell housing i wouldn;t recommend hooking them together and i wouldn't recommend repair it jsut replace with new

  3. #3

    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    I think those are your trim limit sender wires. I'm not sure if the curcuit is normally closed or open on that. But your tilt should work whithout that anyway, either by closing the circuit (wires together) or open (wires apart) Got a manual wit hthe schematics? If not download one from the stickys at the top of this outdrive page.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    There the limit switch wires and connect to the trim up relay at the trim pump.you can find these inside the boat.put a jumper between them and see if the trim goes all the way up.
    If you can read this thank a teacher.If you can read it in english THANK A VETERAN

  5. #5
    Honorary Moderator Emeritus Don S's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Those ARE the trim limit switch wires. If you want to bypass the limit switch, inside the boat locate the bullet connectors where the wiring limit switch attaches to the wiring harness. Disconnect the bullet connectors and jumper the 2 wiring harness side connectors together and your trim switch will work.
    If you do decide to replace it, you must replace both sides. Trim limit (port side) and gauge sender (starboard side). Here are the instructions that come with the kit.

    http://www.4shared.com/document/ZGUF...nstall_in.html
    Don S.


    Please, no PM's (Private Messages) regarding boat/engine problems.
    That is what the forums are for.
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Do you think it's just the wires that need to be replaced? How about the trim limit switch? Thanks

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Quote Originally Posted by woody619 View Post
    Do you think it's just the wires that need to be replaced? How about the trim limit switch? Thanks
    That's what I thought when I found my wires were broken. But it's not practical. Even if you could just change the wires, you'd need to get them through the transom which is practically impossible without removing a bunch of other stuff first.

    Even when you've removed the stuff (drive, bell housing) there's an almost inaccessible bolt plate up behind the top gimbal pivot where the wires go through. Maybe the poster above who did all this without removing anything can tell us how he managed that.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    heres how i replaced them without removing the drive. i've done it 3 different times

    i went inside the boat located and unhooked the wires. tied string to the old wires

    turn the drive all the way to either direction i think all the way to the port gives good acess. i then used my 1/4 drive 7/16 socket and a long 1/4 drive extension and got the 1/4 inch bolt out. once the bolt was out i slowly pulled out one set of wires at a time then when both were out i tied the new wires to the string which was pulled out with the old wires.

    this is a real pita but can be done its hard to get the groment aligned and in the hole but once inthe hole just go inside the boat and keep some tension on the wires so they stay the clamp and boat is a pain in the ***** but jsut workin it with some long needle nose pliers being careful not to pinch the wires. i also have long skinny fingers.

    i hope this helps

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Reply #8 method does work,there is no need in pulling the drive or pivot pins!
    If you can read this thank a teacher.If you can read it in english THANK A VETERAN

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    The older drives had two 1/4"screws in the retainer holding the wires in newer units use only one and a thicker retainer. almost impossible to remove with drive on and bell hsg in place.
    In a marine engine, when everything points to fuel...GO TO IGNITION.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Quote Originally Posted by captk View Post
    The older drives had two 1/4"screws in the retainer holding the wires in newer units use only one and a thicker retainer. almost impossible to remove with drive on and bell hsg in place.
    Exactly. Not necessarily so old, either. My '86 Alpha 1 has the two-screw plate. No way you could get a wrench on that top screw without removing anything.

    Even with the bell housing out, that top screw is still so difficult to reach that Mercury Techs just leave it out.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    yes the older ones are near impossible its best to remove the drive and bellhousing and bellows. i've only did it without removing the drive and bellows and bellhousing on the newer ones. i should have clarafied that my bad

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Thanks guys, sounds like an advanced job for a first time boat owner that's never had a boat in the water (own). Haha. I think me and my dad are pretty handy and will give it a try, unless you think we should have someone do it.

    Any advice on stuff to do or replace while we're in there? Otherwise I'll read the manuals and keep you posted. Thanks

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    If they can be bypassed, I'll just bypass them. Doesn't seem like it's worth all that trouble and alot of people bypass em anyway.

    Being a first time boater w/o a trim limit switch. How will I know @ which point I won't want to go past? Sounds?

    So the thing is I don't want it up too high while the engines engaged, right? Or anytime the engine's on?

    And for the extra wires coming out of it, can i just cut them as close to source as I can and that should be fine?

    Thanks guys!

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    You can tell by the sound of the engine if you have the trim set correctly. If you are trimmed out too much the boat will cavitate in which case you just trim it down a little. The trim limit switch and trim gauge are nice to have and can prevent drive damage but are really not necessary if you pay attention.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Wires in outdrive

    Quote Originally Posted by woody619 View Post
    If they can be bypassed, I'll just bypass them.

    And for the extra wires coming out of it, can i just cut them as close to source as I can and that should be fine?
    Probably best to find the other ends on the engine side and unplug them too.

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