by Dan Nees
Sorry OLD guys, I didn’t think to copy you into this dissertation but; here it is.
As we have all noticed, grounds in our trucks are the bane of our electrical existence. The first place to start to
ensure a good ground is the battery. Make sure you have a sufficient size wire coming from your negative inside of the
battery to the engine block (Note: this is for negative ground vehicles, not ALL older trucks). If you have a good,
solid, wire there, make sure the termination point on the engine is clean. I don’t know about the rest of you, but;
I have my battery wire bolted to the power steering bracket. Pull that wire and wire brush the bracket around the hole
so it is clean and remove the paint around the hole if possible as well. Now, I know not all of us have access to No-Ox,
but; some form of di-electric grease will be good, apply liberally to the now clean hole and to the bolt you also wire
brushed, and to the connector on the wire and re-bolt.
The next, and more important wire, is the block to body wire. This is the one that comes off the bell housing to the firewall – older trucks may come off the front of the motor to the frame. This should be a braided piece of wire that bolts to that stud on the firewall. if it is not, and it is smaller than #2 wire I would definitely change it. Make sure that the bell housing is clean under the wire and bolt head and add No-Ox there and also make sure the firewall bolt is clean and apply No-ox there as well.
If the wire from the bell housing to the firewall is undersized you will have problems finding a 1/2" size lug for the
bell housing, so; all IH heads have holes on the end of them for mounting accessories and one of these could be used
to mount the ground wire to, they are 3/8" holes. The ones on the back of the drivers side head would work good jumping from the firewall.
With these wire clean, and firmly in place you can now start to trouble shoot your other electrical problems.
As a side note, and I have no affiliation etc…
East Coast Scout Parts http://www.eastcoastscouts.com sells very nice battery cables that are, 2/0 I believe, maybe 1/0 for a reasonable price and they fit nicely on a truck and they will spin that starter like you wouldn’t believe! That would be a good cheap fix/upgrade for a notorious Scout problem. These suggestions will work well with any of the old vehicles as well. Especially with 6V systems where you need everything in good working order to ensure reliable operation. I’m sure if you measure out the lengths you would need for battery cables Erick at East Coast could make you 1/0 cables for any application.