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Shift interrupter switch or shift cable problem?

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  • Shift interrupter switch or shift cable problem?

    Mercruiser 3.0, 4 cylinder with an Alpha one - after finally solving my starting issue, we got out on the lake for Fathers day. Boat started at the ramp fine, and ran well while we circled for our driver to park and come back to the dock. Picked him up and motored away from the dock in gear at idle. When opened the throttle, the boat died. I restarted it, engaged forward, opened throttle, and again it died. Started again, engaged reverse, back to neutral, no issue. Husband suspected shift interrupter switch, so opened up engine, disengaged switch, and we moved from neutral to gear, then opened throttle and all was good, EXCEPT couldn't go back to neutral. With shift interruptor switch connected, I can move from forward to neutral to reverse, and back, but can't open the throttle past idle. With switch disconnected, I can hit reverse, then neutral, then forward, but not back to neutral.

    Is it likely we need a new switch? But, we also had the shift cable bellows replaced this spring, and wonder if it could have anything to do with that?? Wondering if we should call him back to fix his work, or if the interruptor switch is the more likely culprit? (Not too sure we want him to do more work on the boat, as he somehow dropped lower unit in the process of changing the bellow and busted our prop - still hasn't returned it, although keeps promising he will).

  • #2
    Re: Shift interrupter switch or shift cable problem?

    Actually, it sounds like your shift interupt is working correctly, except that you are triggering it when applying throttle. It sounds like your shift cables are out of adjustment. We had this exact same issue.
    Watch this video to learn how to set it up.

    1986 Century 3500 Sport LX - Vortec 5.7L Alpha One

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    • #3
      Re: Shift interrupter switch or shift cable problem?

      As Hunter stated....The mechanic did not adjust the cable right.....Or the cable is stretched and on the way out.
      1986 21' Celebrity BR - 350 Mercrusier I/O 260 H.P....Engine Serial #B427596
      1981 18' Checkmate Eluder - Original 898 I/O engine....Replacement engine 1979-350....Serial#-Unknown
      Current..... Completed Restoration....Now on the water!
      1999 GTX Sea-Doo

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      • #4
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        Re: Shift interrupter switch or shift cable problem?

        Originally posted by Momsboat View Post
        Mercruiser 3.0, 4 cylinder with an Alpha one - after finally solving my starting issue, we got out on the lake for Fathers day. Boat started at the ramp fine, and ran well while we circled for our driver to park and come back to the dock. Picked him up and motored away from the dock in gear at idle. When opened the throttle, the boat died. I restarted it, engaged forward, opened throttle, and again it died. Started again, engaged reverse, back to neutral, no issue. Husband suspected shift interrupter switch, so opened up engine, disengaged switch, and we moved from neutral to gear, then opened throttle and all was good, EXCEPT couldn't go back to neutral. With shift interruptor switch connected, I can move from forward to neutral to reverse, and back, but can't open the throttle past idle. With switch disconnected, I can hit reverse, then neutral, then forward, but not back to neutral.

        Is it likely we need a new switch? But, we also had the shift cable bellows replaced this spring, and wonder if it could have anything to do with that?? Wondering if we should call him back to fix his work, or if the interruptor switch is the more likely culprit? (Not too sure we want him to do more work on the boat, as he somehow dropped lower unit in the process of changing the bellow and busted our prop - still hasn't returned it, although keeps promising he will).
        Ayuh,... You need a New shift Cable, the switch is workin' just fine,....

        Ya shoulda had it All done at once, All the bellows, 'n the shift cable, insteada Just that bellows,...

        I'd suggest a different Mechanic,...

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