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Old 10-26-2005, 06:10 PM
Registered User
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 9
220/ 240D pull start knob troubleshooting

Hi, I have a diesel with the pull start type ignition switch (pre-1978?)(turn the key on, pull the knob most of the way out for the glowplugs, pull it out all the way to start) that has been working intermitently... I took it apart and cleaned (sanded down to shiny metal) everything off with no sucess...

The glow plug side of things works every time, but sometimes, the starter doesn't do anything when you pull it out all the way... I looked through my manuals, and searched the board here, without comming up w/ much info...

Basically, could someone please explain to me how this switch works, where I should focus my efforts in troubleshooting/ etc?

Here is one bit of info I came up with:

"The one to upstream side of the "pepper shaker" on the dash (glow position), one to downstream side of pepper shaker and one to starter solenoid (start position) - takes the pepper shaker out of the circuit when starter turns"

I couldn't really make sence of this- is the pepper shaker the glow plug viewing light/ element thingy, a description of where all 4 contacts go would be greatly appreciated

Also info on what the pull cable its self does or where it goes/ etc would be greatly appreciated/ I haven't really had a chance to try to look into this end of things yet.

Thank You Very Much for any help!

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Old 10-26-2005, 07:46 PM
t walgamuth's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Lafayette Indiana
Posts: 38,296
the pull cabel ends up down by

the injection pump above the steering col. this is a very simple device. look at it and think of how it works. there are some rubber isolation parts that can fail and cause problems so look for that. also there is some adjustment that might need adjusting. probably not too hard to figure out and fix. it is pretty intuitive.

tom w
[SIGPIC] Diesel loving autocrossing grandpa Architect. 08 Dodge 3/4 ton with Cummins & six speed; I have had about 35 benzes. I have a 39 Studebaker Coupe Express pickup in which I have had installed a 617 turbo and a five speed manual.[SIGPIC]

..I also have a 427 Cobra replica with an aluminum chassis.
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Old 10-30-2006, 01:02 PM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Flowood Mississippi
Posts: 438
Pull switch info...

I have been helping someone else with the same switch...The cable is for the diesel injection pump turn on /cutoff function.....
Pull switch positions

0....All the way in setting

1rst position or run current to anything,fuel cut on IP

2nd position out(small spring loaded)...Pre-Glow position..glow light on, current to glow plugs through glow light only...

3rd position out,all the way back....current to glow plugs with extra wire in parallel with glow light path, and current to starter solenoid...(heavier spring loading)
Post back if more detail needed...let us know how it goes...
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Old 10-30-2006, 01:08 PM
the tenor man's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 152
I may have one or two of these...

If you can't get yours to work, let me know. I think I have a couple of these and you can have them free if you will pay the shipping. I'll need to check.

The Tenor Man
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Old 10-30-2006, 01:18 PM
Registered User
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Flowood Mississippi
Posts: 438
pull switch

More info...
(1)Terminal 19 on switch to glow plug pepper shaker..(Glow plug Light/Resistance control combo device)
(2) other side of pepper shaker (glow plug light) to first glow plug in series...
(3) Terminal 17 of switch directly to same glow plug...
(4)Terminal 50A to Starter solenoid or A/C relay and neutral safety switch depending on what your car has....

The switch actually just shunts full 12 volts to the glow plugs around the glow lamp during the full out position because of the extra starter drain on the battery voltage...
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Old 10-31-2006, 11:55 PM
katja's Avatar
High Maintenance
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 307
One other thing to check is your starter itself. When I first got Katja, sometimes pulling the start switch all the way out did nothing. The problem was not in the switch but a bad starter solenoid. Replacing the entire starter cured it. Have you tested to see if there was any current flow to the starter when you pull the switch?

1976 240D "Katja"
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