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Thread: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

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    Talking 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Hello all, well I mostly post on the Shelby-Dodge side of things, but I have a '72 Charger that's just been sitting and it needs to start up. I know I'll feel more up to body work when I hear it's 318 straight pipes blare. Last time it started was probably a year ago. I know the battery is shot, it was a piece of crap when we got it. But I tried jump starting it twice and when I hit the start button (the r-tard who had the car before thought it would be cool) it sounds like something is just going *click* but it won't turn over. Sounds likes its coming from the starter? I know it is getting power because the wipers will come on. I tried getting the coil to spark to the valve cover while my friend tried to start it and no spark. Any problem areas I can look for? What can I do? Thanks for the help! And for everyone's viewing pleasure, I'll include a picture of the thing (I wouldn't call it a car yet )




    (I know my my Daytona hogs the pictures...)

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    UH. Does it have a crank/no start or does it just click??? Sorry much confused post..

    Nice rides though

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Thanks too bad they're all broken, I think my driveway is cursed . Sorry I didn't make it more clear. When I turn the key the engine just makes a single click/clunk sound from around or at the starter but does not turn over when it does this.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    It's been a year. First turn the engine over by hand to make sure 'it ain't froze'. After that it just sounds like a wiring issue. Check the ground. Check voltage while you're trying to crank, check r-tard's wiring. Look for twisted together wires with black tape over them.

    Ron

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    Hoosier Daddy?? Turbo Mopar Staff Clay's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    the click is the solenoid of the starter engaging, usually. There is a relay on the fire wall, you can jump around this relay to make sure its good. If you jump around it and still get the click, but no crank, make sure you have a good battery. If the battery is good, then you may have a sticking or bad starter. The starter solenoid engages the starter gear with the fly wheel. If the solenoid is sticking, then it wont push the gear out and then wont spin the motor. Tap the starter with a hammer to see if this unsticks it. The engine could be stuck, but in my experience it takes a LOT more than a year of sitting to do so.
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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    In short...

    Whack the starter with a BFH a couple of times while a friend turns the key.....

  7. #7
    Hoosier Daddy?? Turbo Mopar Staff Clay's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    ^^^^^^ yeah, what he said!
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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Quote Originally Posted by TurboRon25 View Post
    It's been a year. First turn the engine over by hand to make sure 'it ain't froze'. After that it just sounds like a wiring issue. Check the ground. Check voltage while you're trying to crank, check r-tard's wiring. Look for twisted together wires with black tape over them.

    Ron
    Twisted wires with black tape? Yeah... that makes up about 1/2 of the wiring in the car. At one point you see some stray wires hanging near the battery tie down post, and he taped the post rather than the wires to keep it from shorting I guess that would be a good place to look for problems.

    Also, could a bad battery cause it not to start at all, even while it is being jumped? Because I know the battery is gone.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    And I forgot about the hitting the starter trick, hopefully that will get it started.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    If the battery is dead it's dead. Pull the battery out of your DD and make sure..
    I had a 73 G van that took 3 batteries in series PLUS a charger to turn over. Yes the primary lead was melty...

    Better yet I can grab a truck and trailer and get that sweet coke bottle up here to find out for ya!

    My buddy's 73 SE(you should see the interior on this thing..!)....

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    That thing is sweet! Have any interior shots of it? Mine is a '72 SE, it was the same color as that one and had a vinyl top I tell ya though, tardboy did a job on it...

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    I could only imagine..
    "Don't call me Jim" got the car as an unfinished project. And has been through a ton of crap since..
    PO found a bolt of the SE fabric and had the entire interior redone. If you need that pattern you'll find it in any 70-74 Imperial oddly. It's still costing him less than the 63 Riv it replaced! Plus this one's got a 400...

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    My interior is pretty bad off at one point they tried to dye it all black, it's really a shame, but my only concern is covering up all the rust holes before the frame gets rusted, the body panels are bad but the frame is good. As soon as I hear it run I'll be more motivated though.

    Here is a list of the car's "modifications" for entertainment purposes only: removal of the electric choke for a manual choke, automatic floor shifter that hits the dashboard before park, vinyl topped removed (without painting the roof so its full rust now), a downgrade to what looks like a lawn mower carburetor (but with a chrome air cleaner!), custom start button under the dash, custom skeleton-gambling/ripping through the door vinyls (now removed), and my personal favorite, muddin' tires on the back "tha biggast walmart could fit on them wheels" the previous owner said.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Oof!

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Make sure you've got a good connection on those jumper cables and that they are decent set of heavy gauge cables. The crappy little wal-mart 10 gauge cables probably won't carry enough current to crank it over.
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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Just replace the battery already! If you know it's shot...!!!
    I've had cases where the battery was bad and jumping didn't start it, and also putting a 150 amp charger on it and it wouldn't start. Replaced the battery and it started fine.
    So first make sure you have a good battery. Second make sure the connections are all good even at the starter and the selenoid. If that doesn't start, try jumping the selenoid like someone else said. Basically follow the positive cable to the selenoid, take a large screwdriver (with a rubber or plastic handle) and touch the post where the cable is connected to the other large post on the selenoid. If the ignition is off it will just crank and not start. If THAT doesn't work, the start has issues and again as someone else mentioned use a hammer and beat on it.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Turbodave View Post
    The crappy little wal-mart 10 gauge cables probably won't carry enough current to crank it over.
    That could be part of the problem... I'll get a new battery eventually too, I just wanted to make sure there wasn't another problem with the car to why it wasn't running which would be more costly to fix. This is my second project so money is tight on it.

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    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    Quote Originally Posted by moparzrule View Post
    Just replace the battery already! If you know it's shot...!!!
    I've had cases where the battery was bad and jumping didn't start it, and also putting a 150 amp charger on it and it wouldn't start. Replaced the battery and it started fine.

    +1 on the battery. I had a car that the battery got so bad it couldn't even be jumped anymore. Stick a good battery in it then go from there.

  19. #19

    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    ya +2 on the battery. Then try turning the key and sticking a screw driver on the selenoid to see if you have a starter. Also check your neutral safety switch, it wont start from the key with the neutral safety switch out. It is an auto right? Trace your grounds. There should be a ground to the fire wall on the passenger side from the block aswell as the front one. Is it electronic ignition?

  20. #20

    Re: 1972 Charger won't start! A muscle car newbie needs help!

    just to cover your --- =) my dads 69 roadrunner had the same problem... and when you get it running you dont wanna begin by chasing problems.

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