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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 01:42 AM Thread Starter
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Its Alive!! Back from the dead.

The car I bought for $300 that needed new headgaskets and many other odds and ends is back from the dead, shes alive, but has one problem I had to get a c-clamp to compress the button on my shifter to get it out of park, after that it was fine.

Problem in detail... I can start my car in park, but it wont shift without a fight with that button, once its running its fine I can shift through all gears place it in park, back to drive, back to park, no problems but the moment I turn the key off and restart it fights again.... I have full function of my brake lights, turn signals, hazards, alarm, etc... I have seached and all I found were problems relating to the 15a fuse under the dash which would also cause no brake lights, I'm assuming this has something to do with my neutral safety switch, if it does how do I replace it, where is it, how much does one cost, etc....

Heres a list of things replaced so far...and why...

both headlights (one was broken)
pass. side fender (completely distroyed)
hood (ruined on pass side)
clear turn signals (pass side was distroyed, clears look better)
header panel (pass side was distroyed)
both head gaskets (pass side and driver side leaked coolant)
valve cover gaskets (bought new valve covers)
intake manifold (bought pi intake/old one had plastic crossover in front)
intake manifold gaskets (why take chances plus I needed pi gaskets)
exhaust manifold gaskets (bought headers)
heads (stock is nice but romeo pi is better)
exhaust manifolds (replaced with headers)
all 4 o2's (got them for free why keep old ones)
radiator (likely why it over heated)
water pump (looked like it was "weeping")
belt (it was time)
tensioner (because I could)
air filter (why not)
oil...(milkshake anyone?)
coolant (it needed to be replaced)
fuel filter (almost due... why not)
two new tires (back ones looked worn)
hose in valley (leaked)
front seal on timing cover (because I could)
timing cover seals (because I could)
spark plugs (most were fouled)
plug wires (they has 80,000mi on them)
thermostat (another possible culprit to the overheating)
head bolts (put on pi heads)
battery (old one aparently couldn't hold a charge)
all 4 rotors for cross drilled and slotted ones (needed to be changed anyway)
all 4 sets of brake pads (needed to be changed anyway)

additional mods coming, most already ordered....

cat back dynomax system from summit racing
torque converter
3.73 gears
drive shaft
cobra r wheels
tires
front side window tints
coil packs
chip
j-mod
antenna
nitrous oxide
lowering springs
speakers
oil filter relocater
oil cooler
trans cooler
oil temp gauge
trans temp gauge
2 cylinder head temp gauges (one for each head)
2 air fuel ratio gauges (one for each bank)


Just wanted some feed back of what you all thought... and how to fix my problem

-1996 Pearl White Thunderbird 4.6 Sport 4v with many mods:
Current Best: 13.583 @ 103.74 10/2014.
227hp/241tq measured on calibrated mustang dyno, tested at full vehicle simulation with inertia enabled, no number skewing.
-2001 White Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.8 V10, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG KO2's, Bilstein 7100 Remote Reservoir Race Bypass Shocks, 6" Spring lift, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, FlowMaster Exhaust
Amber_Murder's Daily Driver.
-2005 White GMC Sierra 3500 6.6 Duramax, Dually, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG Commercial T/A's, Rancho RS9000XL Shocks, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, Banks Monster Exhaust
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 02:11 AM
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I had a simliar issue with my shifter about a year ago. I had an issue in the steering column actually that was interfereing with the cable that acuates the neutal safety switch. I couldnt say exactly what your issue might be. Id suggest checking that cable to ensure that it move freely. Also if you remove the center console surround, you can lift up the little lever that make the neutral safety work. Its not a fix, but a cheat that helps until you fix it right.

1995 Cougar XR7 4.6
1997 Thunderbird LX 4.6
1977 Country Squire 460
1985 Capri RS 5.0, 5spd
1997 Thunderbird 4.6
1984 Capri RS 5.0,5spd
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 03:04 AM
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wow sounds like you really want to keep that Tbird alive for a long time.....a couple things i would look into for safety would be the upper and lower balljoints/control arms...they are notorious for crapping out at high-mileage

also, get a 2002 GT MAF while you're at it with the SCT chip and all

an un-necessary expense might be the coil packs...they are usually good for a long time, but replacing them, or going coil-on-plug like me, wouldnt hurt either...and maybe new wheel bearings for all 4 wheels to keep it rolling drag-free

mmm what else...drain-plug to add to tranny pan for easier fluid changes........and while you're at it, replace the heater core and add some small grounding-straps from the radiator to the chassis to prevent further corrosion from electrolysis.....have the A/C system serviced and vacuum-evacuated and refilled with fresh r134 refrigerant....maybe a new fuel-pump (Master-brand unit at Autozone is rated at a much higher flow-rate than the stock one, 170 lph i believe)......have the injectors professionally cleaned....


ok i'll stop know.....man there are always things to look out in these old cars.....little by little, you can get that thing running better than new....keep it up
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 03:23 PM Thread Starter
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wheel bearings were replaced at 60,000mi according to paper work I have on the car
For whatever reason my tranny pan has a drain plug... I know its not normal but it came to me that way
I already added a ground to the radiator
a/c system was serviced at 70,000mi according to paper work and blows icy cold
heater core..... I really don't even want to think about tearing into but will probably be replaced
fuel pump also done at 60,000mi, some sort of fluke...
injectors.... I might have cleaned or get new from a friend
all of the suspension looks good.

Time to go ponder getting a 2002 gt maf....

-1996 Pearl White Thunderbird 4.6 Sport 4v with many mods:
Current Best: 13.583 @ 103.74 10/2014.
227hp/241tq measured on calibrated mustang dyno, tested at full vehicle simulation with inertia enabled, no number skewing.
-2001 White Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.8 V10, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG KO2's, Bilstein 7100 Remote Reservoir Race Bypass Shocks, 6" Spring lift, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, FlowMaster Exhaust
Amber_Murder's Daily Driver.
-2005 White GMC Sierra 3500 6.6 Duramax, Dually, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG Commercial T/A's, Rancho RS9000XL Shocks, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, Banks Monster Exhaust
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 04:31 PM
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Try checking to see if your brakelights work.
Sounds like what happens when the stoplight switch isnt working

96 Laser Red 4.6L - Custom
Custom Nascar-Inspired Bodykit - 55* Rear Spoiler - J-modded Trans - 80mm MAF - One-Off Diablosport Chipmaster Revolution Chip/Tune W/Toggle - ScanGaugeII Diagnostics & Data Readout - PBR Brakes - Drilled/Slotted Rotors - SC Wheels & Springs - Falken Tires - KYB GR-1 Shocks/Struts - FSTB - RSTB - RTLB - LECB - 60/40 Split Rear - SC Seats - SC Vac/Boost Gauge
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-12-2006, 04:32 PM
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if the stoplight switch isnt working right, it wont let the car out of park without one hell of a fight

96 Laser Red 4.6L - Custom
Custom Nascar-Inspired Bodykit - 55* Rear Spoiler - J-modded Trans - 80mm MAF - One-Off Diablosport Chipmaster Revolution Chip/Tune W/Toggle - ScanGaugeII Diagnostics & Data Readout - PBR Brakes - Drilled/Slotted Rotors - SC Wheels & Springs - Falken Tires - KYB GR-1 Shocks/Struts - FSTB - RSTB - RTLB - LECB - 60/40 Split Rear - SC Seats - SC Vac/Boost Gauge
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2006, 12:23 AM
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It is likely the shift interlock solenoid or cable. I fight mine from time to time, and it always wins. My other driver car (the 89 Cougar) is down, so I can't take this one out to fix it. It happens when mine is cold, or I haven't driven it in a day or two (which is not often).

Instead of using a c clamp to shift out of Park, use the procedure from the owners manual, turn the key to off (not lock where you put in the key, and not on where the radio etc will turn on), shift the car to neutral, and start it from there. Press on the brake prior to shifting to neutral (so it doesn't roll, not so that it will shift!) until you get it fixed.

--
97 Mark VIII LSC/Silver/Gray leather
97 Cougar 4.6 Sport/White Opalescent Tricoat Metallic /Gray leather down but not out?
89 Cougar LS 3.8/Oxford White/Gray velour/HG need replaced AGAIN
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2006, 12:58 AM
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I've had two issues both leading to similar results:

1: My shifter knob did not have the staple clip in the knob that holds it down. It was a pain in the *** to get the knob to actually push the shift switch down.

2: My brake light switch (located on the brake pedal) came lose. Found this out by pushing the brake and the brake lights weren't coming on. Cleaned the connections, all was good.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2006, 01:31 AM
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Congrats doc Frankistien, I can relate.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2006, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
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the ghost I'm pretty sure I mentioned that I have full function of my brake lights, oh by the way, just to clear this up, I sprayed the s*** out of that cable with wd40 and it works buttery smoooth now, aparently something was just caught, looks like the privious owner has spilled his fair share of drinks down there. so Basically, PROBLEM FIXED EVERYONE

-1996 Pearl White Thunderbird 4.6 Sport 4v with many mods:
Current Best: 13.583 @ 103.74 10/2014.
227hp/241tq measured on calibrated mustang dyno, tested at full vehicle simulation with inertia enabled, no number skewing.
-2001 White Ford F-250 Super Duty 6.8 V10, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG KO2's, Bilstein 7100 Remote Reservoir Race Bypass Shocks, 6" Spring lift, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, FlowMaster Exhaust
Amber_Murder's Daily Driver.
-2005 White GMC Sierra 3500 6.6 Duramax, Dually, 4-door, 4x4, Limo Tint, BFG Commercial T/A's, Rancho RS9000XL Shocks, Kenwood Double Din, K&N Intake, Banks Monster Exhaust
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-13-2006, 11:24 PM
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yay!

96 Laser Red 4.6L - Custom
Custom Nascar-Inspired Bodykit - 55* Rear Spoiler - J-modded Trans - 80mm MAF - One-Off Diablosport Chipmaster Revolution Chip/Tune W/Toggle - ScanGaugeII Diagnostics & Data Readout - PBR Brakes - Drilled/Slotted Rotors - SC Wheels & Springs - Falken Tires - KYB GR-1 Shocks/Struts - FSTB - RSTB - RTLB - LECB - 60/40 Split Rear - SC Seats - SC Vac/Boost Gauge
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-14-2006, 09:21 PM
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hey chris its about time you got that thing running lol im happy for you it is a great looking car better than mine lol pm me your num i lost it and been wanting to call you bobby
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