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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1981 Bronco, with a 302. It was originally an inline 6, it looked like someone dropped a 'junkyard' engine in it. The wiring all looks decent, but I can't keep fuse #12 from blowing. The truck won't start without it. I tried several new starter solenoids, and got the truck to start once, but the starter wouldn't disengage. I put another solenoid in (I've gone through 4 of them) and I'm back to square one. I have a new alternator, new voltage regulator, battery, battery cables, ignition switch ,and had the starter checked, it tested good. I would really like to get my Bronco running again, I have an awesome 302/C6 combo to put in, but I just can't figure out what's causing my fuse problem. Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks!
P.S. I hope to solve it by the end of this weekend, otherwise I'm going to take the Bronco to the scrapyard. I hate to do it, but the truck is just soaking up insurance money right now.
 

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One Cold North Dakotan
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I didn't mean for him to put in a bigger fuse, I meant for him to make sure it's the proper one! I looked through my Haynes manual here but it didn't have a fuse layout diagram. I don't have my owners manual handy either. If it needs a 30 amp fuse for instance, there's no point in putting in a 15.

But yes, more than likely there is something messed up.
 

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No prepuce on my -
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Where are you? Someone who lives nearby will come get the Bronco from you.
Yes..! Tell me you are in Michigan...and I'll cruise over and take that hunk of junk off your hands.... :toothless
 

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I have a 1981 Bronco, with a 302. It was originally an inline 6, it looked like someone dropped a 'junkyard' engine in it. The wiring all looks decent, but I can't keep fuse #12 from blowing. The truck won't start without it.
I show #12 as being "Horn, Cigarette Lighter, Speed Control". This circuit has no effect on starting or running of the vehicle. Sounds like maybe the real problem is back-feeding off this circuit.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Yeah, I just got an original owner's manual off e-bay, shows that it is #3 and it does "speed control relay and control amplifier, axle control 4-wheel drive indicator lamp, accessory safety relay, convenience group. 15 amp fuse (light blue)" I have been using a 15 amp, so no problems there. I am getting continuity from a wire that goes from the turn signal assembly to the gauge cluster, it also goes to the driver's side front turn signal, but I can't find where the short is coming from. Has this been a problem for anyone else/where should I start looking? Thanks!
 

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According to Haynes, that's fuse #11. Are you following the Wh/Pu wire? Is there a continuous-duty relay (steel case, similar to the starter relay by the battery) screwed to the firewall under the L hood hinge? Do you have a rear window defrost grid or a factory clock? Did the truck come with cruise? Try to find the original computer for the feedback carb (under the driver's seat or above the gas pedal) & unplug it. Then try to find that wire in the engine bay (probably on the L side) and make sure it's not shorted or plugged into anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I didn't find the carb box, nothing below the L hinge, and no Pu/Wh wire to be seen. As far as the options go, at least as far as I know, it didn't have any of them.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Got it to start! A friend of mine who has a lot more experience with vehicles came over today, and we figured out that the linkage in the steering column wasn't pushing the ignition switch all the way in. Totally different from what we thought the actual problem was, still can't keep that fuse from blowing though. Oh well, at least it runs and drives now! Thanks for all the suggestions!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Long time no Bronco

I think I'm about done with my 81 (yes, again). It keeps having problems because whoever had it before me did a crappy job re-wiring it for a V8. I have one more thing to try tomorrow, and if that doesn't do it, I'll proly strip all the parts I want off it and tow what's left to the metal recycling yard. If anyone is interested in it (no, not for free) let me know and I might consider holding off on junking it if my 'last resort' doesn't work.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Still haven't been able to fix it... I tried a new voltage regulator, but all that did was get really hot and make smoke come from some of the wires by the fuse block. On top of that, the engine is just about to die. I can hear things banging around inside it. Going to swap it for another 302 and a C6 I have from my last Bronco this Friday.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Ok. Finally found a solution to my charging problem; apparently there is a GM voltage regulator that takes the 3 wires from the back of my alternator, turns them into one, and routes that directly to the battery. In theory, this should work. But we all know how theories go, eh?
 
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