1998 6x4 no start - John Deere Gator Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 11-09-2019, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy 1998 6x4 no start

I feel like this is a common problem here. All was fine until we shut it off. 15 minutes later, no start, no clicking, nothing.
I took the battery out, it was clean and it has lots of spark. I called JD and they had no clue how to get the power bed up, they put me through to my local dealer and he guided me to the removal of the pin out of the "piston" and I managed to lift the bed up briefly. Heavy as all get out. It has no manual support and I cannot hold it for long. I really want the bed to be up of it's own accord. I am afraid to block or chock it. I put the battery back in. I put another pin in the piston to hold it in place because I could not get the original back in. Apparently when I lifted the bed, the piston collapsed a little and the holes will not line up.

I bypassed the ground and no start. I changed all of the fuses under the dash, no start. The fuse block seemed a little cruddy so I brushed it out. The first 15A fuse on the top left was very corroded. I thought I saw a drop of water come of of a fuse slot but fail to see how as the gator has not seen rain. I did get a service manual for it. All of the diagnostics want the cargo box raised and that is not gonna happen. I wiggled the spark plug, no luck. I did try to remove the ground but I cannot get any leverage to do so. It looks very solid and is bolted to the block.

Tomorrow I plan to jump the solenoid by crossing a screwdriver across the terminals if that is possible. If that fails, I don't know what else to do except call the JD dealer and $uffer the con$equence$.

Can I tow this gator backwards (in neutral of course) and at least get it closer to the house or back down to the barn? I would also appreciate any advice. Thanks in advance. Lynsey
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post #2 of 14 Old 11-09-2019, 11:48 PM
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Same as on the 615 topic here, you missed something.
Is there power to the dash?
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post #3 of 14 Old 11-10-2019, 05:55 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you. No. There is no power to the dash. No horn, no lights, nothing anywhere. Also, duly noted, I will not jump the solenoid.

Last edited by LynseysGator; 11-10-2019 at 05:59 AM. Reason: wanted to acknowledge I read the other thread about not jumping the solenoid.
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post #4 of 14 Old 11-10-2019, 07:50 AM
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Do you have a volt meter and/or test light and know how to use it? It's hard and/or inefficient to check electrical systems without some basic knowledge.

Start with the battery and trace the power towards the dash. When you no longer can verify battery voltage, you'll know where the problem is.

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post #5 of 14 Old 11-10-2019, 09:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynseysGator View Post
Thank you. No. There is no power to the dash. No horn, no lights, nothing anywhere. Also, duly noted, I will not jump the solenoid.
Well no i mean that there was a topic about a 615 here with a no dash power situation.
Remove switch, prod the checklight in the red wire cconnector.
If theres power the problem is up the road if theres no power the problem is down the road.
This wire goes back via a fuse towards the starter positive and from there to battery positive via another wire.

Check this track from the switch down
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post #6 of 14 Old 11-11-2019, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you, for your helpful information. I do have a test light but cannot raise the bed to get in there and completely follow through. There is no support rod to keep the bed up and it is not close to the house or barn, it is also around freezing this week. The owners manual says I cannot tow it. So, I am calling the dealer this time. It is highly frustrating as I only put 8 hours on it since purchase.
I have taken steps to be better prepared in the future. I have purchased a portable jump pack and will be ordering the support rod. I will learn to use basic ohmmeters and voltmeters for next years problems. Electricity is my weakness for sure.

I did learn something I wish to share. When you disconnect the lower pin for the lift screw and manually lift the bed, you cannot get the pin back in later. Apparently just moving the screw when you lift the bed, compresses the screw and you cannot extend it enough to get the original pin back in. Also, the battery obstructs the insertion or removal of the pin, so be sure you are good with your pin business afore you reinstall your battery. Finally, a favorite part of the hood plastic likes to crack directly over the fuse box, so that may do with a covering of sealant if your Gator sees rain. Thank you all again for your help and I am off to see if the dealer is open on this holiday Monday. Lynsey
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post #7 of 14 Old 11-11-2019, 07:33 AM
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It will be interesting to learn what the dealer finds.

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post #8 of 14 Old 11-12-2019, 06:33 AM Thread Starter
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Yes, it will, 200mph. Sadly, they cannot pick it up until Friday. I will post the results as they come in. I will also search for a good online tutorial on electrical diagnosis and use of the necessary tools. If anyone knows of a good instructional site, please advise! Keeping fingers crossed for a relatively inexpensive experience....gotta be cheaper than fixing a Dynahoe.
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post #9 of 14 Old 11-14-2019, 11:01 AM
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Good advice so far on tracing your electrical issue. Here's a bit more. Number one, it's almost impossible to do any diagnosis without access to the engine compartment, ie; box up. You stated that you were able to get it up but unable to keep it up (OK, no Viagra jokes please). Just jam a length of 2x4 or other stout shaft between the box and top of the tranny and you have access. Next, run a piece of wire from the positive terminal of the battery to the ignition switch. With a little trial and error, you'll find the "on" terminal, thereby bypassing the switch altogether. Once you've found the on terminal and put power to it you should hear your fuel pump start and be able to work your power lift and lights. If that works jumper to the "start" terminal and you should have a start. If that all works you have a bad ignition switch, not uncommon and a relatively easy and cheap fix. Hope this helps.

BTW, I know the Gator manual says no to towing, but I've towed several for short distances, less than a quarter mile without any adverse affect. I wouldn't advise any more than that. Good luck.
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post #10 of 14 Old 11-15-2019, 06:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you so much, Cheapsnake. This is wonderful information and I will keep it for the future. Sadly, they are picking it up today and I would not have time to implement your suggestions. Your info on the 2x4 is very helpful. One question, how do you hold the bed up while sticking the 2x4 in there? That thing is heavy.

Also, I tried to buy a support rod and was told that I could not use it if I already had an electric bed installed. True or false? I want to cover all bases for future failures as I cannot get that bed up, hold it and fiddle with something all at the same time!

I just thought of something, I can get to the positive terminal of the battery, I can get to the ignition switch too. I doubt I have a length of wire that long...can I use jumper cables and a piece of thin metal stuck in the teeth of the other end of the jumper cable?
I don't want to cause any more damage to run up my bill as it is! Thanks for your help!! Lynsey
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post #11 of 14 Old 11-15-2019, 07:20 AM
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If anyone takes the advice of running a wire directly from the battery as stated in Post #9. Please add some type of circuit protection to this wire before poking it around to find an issue.

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post #12 of 14 Old 11-15-2019, 07:39 AM Thread Starter
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Okie, dokie! I was just going to ask if I can take a jump pack directly to the ignition. But no. I am just gonna let the dealer pick it up and then get some more education on electrical issues afore I start poking and prodding. Thank you, 200MPH. It is 30 degrees out and I have no inclination to be in a hurry doing something because I am freezing. I think I will make up a jumper wire that has a 30A fuse in it for future. Will that provide the circuit protection of which you speak? Thank you.
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post #13 of 14 Old 11-15-2019, 05:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynseysGator View Post
Okie, dokie! I was just going to ask if I can take a jump pack directly to the ignition. But no. I am just gonna let the dealer pick it up and then get some more education on electrical issues afore I start poking and prodding. Thank you, 200MPH. It is 30 degrees out and I have no inclination to be in a hurry doing something because I am freezing. I think I will make up a jumper wire that has a 30A fuse in it for future. Will that provide the circuit protection of which you speak? Thank you.
Id say 30a is high since its only a relay, not the actual starting amps start with 15a
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post #14 of 14 Old 11-29-2019, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
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Hello all and Happy Holiday Season. I got the Gator back and wanted to report the findings by the dealer.
Bad positive battery cable and bad non-oem voltage regulator. They did a LOF and replaced the spark plug. The folks in the shop apparently loved my Mossy Oak seats.

I got high marks for replacing the bed screw pin with a hardened steel pin and letting them know exactly what I had done to the machine before they got their hands on it. They put the original pin back that I could not. I learned that a Kawi engine is cold blooded and where to place a strategically adapted 2x4 if I should have to keep the bed up again under no power. Thank you for your assistance on this one and I am going to dutifully learn about electrical systems this winter.

Last edited by LynseysGator; 12-01-2019 at 07:39 AM. Reason: wanted to add in the fact of the spark plug replacement too.
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