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  • Dear Community Members,

    Updated 9/29/20 - Upgrades have been pushed until 10/7/20

    Over the last two years, there have been updates to the environment that have introduced challenges in usability, performance, and security. Efforts to improve the technology, user interface and site performance have revealed weaknesses in the platform and outdated software our site uses. This has made it increasingly difficult and frustrating to support and upgrade to more modern reliable standards that users deserve. This is not the experience we want for the members of this community.

    Members want a fast site that performs well across all devices, to be able to find relevant and interesting content, and easily share through text, images, video, and messaging on a secure platform. Our goal is to provide this user experience to all members. We will be updating to a new platform to better meet the needs of this community and allow us to provide support more efficiently. Our focus is to create a sustainable platform that performs well and loads faster on all devices while offering seamless ways to search and connect. Technology is constantly innovating - by creating an environment that we control we can maintain the site with more frequent improvements and maintenance updates.

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    What’s next?
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    We appreciate each member’s contribution to this community and look forward to an improved experience for you all.

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Merc 115 thunderbolt

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  • Merc 115 thunderbolt

    So I got this motor off a bass boat. Put it on my center counsel with a brand new control body. New ignition with push choke. The new throttle body has a pair of wires for the “neutral safety start switch”. What do these go to? Also do I need to connect the orange and brown wires if I don’t have a tach? I can get the motor to turn over but it will not fire. Ran before swap? Any help would be great!

  • #2
    OK, I do not know what a control body is. Is it controls? If so, what kind of controls? Ign key in dashboard or on control?

    What year and HP motor do you have?


    • #3
      It’s a new mercury control. Key on dash. Trim switch on throttle. It’s roughly 78’ 115hp . Mercury could not tell me the age of motor. Serial number to old


      • #4
        So post your serial # or pictures of the decals.--------Some here can tell in seconds what the production year is.


        • #5


          • #6
            That shows as a 1973 model.


            • #7
              Then it’s a 73 with a thunder bolt ignition. Put on Merc center counsel control.(purchased on amazon) with new cables. Wired everything up and now no spark. Motor fired and ran fine before swap.


              • #8
                Thank you for your feedback. I’m grateful for any help I can get. Carpenter by trade so if anyone in Green Bay wi area can assist I’d be more than willing to work trade for any help.


                • #9
                  Thank you


                  • #10
                    ----Thunderbolt was their name for electronic ignition.----Any pictures of the distributor / powerhead ?


                    • #11
                      If that is a '73, you need power to the switchbox in order to have spark. Later models do not need power to produce spark, as the flywheel and stator produce it.

                      You also need to wire in the neutral switch.

                      The control should have the new wiring colors, and your motor the older wire colors, unless you have a new boat wiring harness.

                      How is the new harness connected to the motor?


                      • #12
                        I used the old wiring harness. Never took it off motor. I can get more pictures of motor this evening. How do I test switch box? I’m not great with electrical. My wiring harness has nothing that look like the (red/yellow) for neutral switch. I’ll get y’all pictures tonight. Thanks for the help


                        • #13
                          OK, The S terminal on the ign key is for starter. That connects to one of the neutral safety switch wires. The other neutral safety switch wire connects to your yellow motor harness wire.

                          The I terminal on the ign key needs to attach to your white engine harness wire. This provides power to the Thunderbolt ignition system.

                          The C terminal on the ign key connects to the grey choke solenoid wire on the the engine harness.

                          The M terminal connects to ground. The other M terminal will connect to the orange wire, although your motor does not use it.

                          The B terminal connects to the red wire for +12VDC.

                          The brown wire in your engine harness is for the Tach signal. You may need to change the wire on the engine harness to use a modern tachometer.

                          That get it?


                          • #14
                            I’ll check into this tonight and send more pictures of the motor and key switch. At a quick glance I noticed I have different letters on my key back. The boat had a Force motor on it before. Do I need a different key assembly?


                            • #15
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                              OK, so new Mercury control, but old Force ignition keyswitch?

                              Usually ignition keys for outboards are pretty universal. Let me know what letters you do have on the ign key and maybe we can match 'em up.