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Unfortunately my Pantera recently failed to start. It normally took a few tries to get running from a cold start but on the first try it started to turn over and then stopped. Thereafter all that happens is a single click. After testing the battery and getting a replacement I'm still getting the same result.
After confirming the wire to the starter and the solenoid seem intact I noticed that a "Motorcraft Solid State Electronic Ignition" which is mounted below the coil and alternator regulator appeared to be leaking. After taking it off the electrical board appears to be coated in the grey sticky material that was coming down from it.

I'm a novice on Pantera electrical setup and this part doesn't show up in any diagrams I have found. Anybody know how big of a problem this is and whether it is related to my starter issue (or should I just proceed with replacing the solenoid).


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That box might cause your car to not start, but it shouldn’t cause the starter to not crank the engine....  unless it’s more complex than a typical electronic ignition....

I would focus on the wires, solenoid, starter & heavy duty grounds first.  Get it cranking, then worry about that module....


 PS.  That box is an electronic ignition module, similar to a Duraspark or a MSD Ignition module.  I’m not familiar with that module, but it probably means your car has a more modern electronic distributor.  It is not the stock ignition configuration for sure. 

This would typically mean your ignition wiring is modified in some way.

Last edited by rocky

First: as not cranking sounds like "heavy ground" per Rocky's statement.check the ground straps, def one at the gear box end. I have at least 3 installed..

Second: well depends on your starter but stock has this solonoid close to the Ignition modul, is a kind of very heavy relais. The relais connectors inside might be corroded, hence a considerable voltage drop, no power at the starter (worn out MODERN starters do the CLICK noise when bad). More difficult to diagnose, you would need a volt meter AT THE STARTER connectors, try to start an measure voltage under Starter key in START, i.e. under LOAD!



My solenoid is mounted next to the alternator regulator. I tried to get a voltage measurement at the starter and was only seeing a volt register on the meter.  My next step is going to be to try and replace the solenoid as I happened to find a spare in my collection of Pantera parts. Unfortunately I don't have a remote starter but might need to pick one up if I have too much trouble getting the solenoid disconnected

The remote starter device that Jan posted bypasses the ignition switch, not the solenoid. The solenoid is a high powered relay that routes the power to the starter motor when the ignition switch is placed in the start position.


Nevertheless it would be a very helpful tool for troubleshooting your problem.


Another comment....  if you are trying to take a measurement of the voltage at the main starter power terminal while it is cranking, you might not have any luck....

It will look pretty much like a direct short to ground....


Last edited by rocky

Yes I misspoke, Rocky is right the remote starter does not bypass the solenoid but it can help diagnose somewhat. I had a starting issue with my Murci a couple years ago and I mainly used the remote starter to start it and get it to the dealer. But learned some things along the way as noted in these links below. In relation to the starter, it can get crap in it and although it clicks as though it is moving it is not fully moving and not making the full contact that puts the full 12 volts high amp feed to the starter motor. From what I learned the solenoid is really just a relay where a low current feed pulls in a contactor to supply a high current feed. The benefit of the remote starter is that it sends the full load to the starter and therefore it has "a better chance" of turning over the starter even if the starter has somewhat poor contacts inside. On my Murci the clincher to conclude there was a better probability that it was a starter issue was when I saw that the remote starter was starting it but it was not starting it every time. I understand that if it started 100% of the time with the remote starter but not with the key, then it was more likely it was some electrical issue pre starter motor rather than the starter itself. Not foolproof but it was still a low cost useful tool. I used to explain to my employees that problems are a good thing because you learn, but they would just look at me funny.

Last edited by does200

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