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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thanks to reading this forum and others I decided to get this kit and give it a try installing it on my 1983 318 with a 1987 P218 Onan. A guy on this Thread , tomd999 , said it is possible and to work from the front and take your time . Well let me tell you it did take my time , but I completed the task this afternoon with positive results ;-). I actually worked from the side of the machine ( snow blowers on ) I sort of cheated on the Positive threaded stud coming out of the starter. Through trial and error I found a nut that would screw on ( not as easy as it sounds) on this stud. I did not remove the existing nut as the directions stated but added the lag wire from the improvement kit and secured it with the nut I found to be the correct size. I got the nut started by using two fingers one from the bottom of the framework and one finger from the top. This was quite difficult but it was possible . Once I got the nut started I found a socket and ratchet and found a way from the front of the machine to tighten the nut down . I installed the rest of the kit per instructions and now the 318 cranks and starts with the turn of the key , everytime! Life is Good
 

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Glad to hear that your perseverance paid off and that the kit addressed your symptom. The "just clicks when key is turned" behavior is quite common on tractors of this age because the key switch gets worn and the connections in that harness can have added resistance due to corrosion, heat annealing of the spring contact force, etc. If your tractor still has the original key switch you might consider changing it out with a new one as they are not that difficult to swap out nor are they that costly.

As you know, the starter improvement kit you installed is relieving the key switch of the higher current needed to actuate the starter solenoid by interposing another relay, but you may find that a new key switch now will also make the headlights a bit brighter and could address other little quirks the tractor may have.

Chuck
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Glad to hear that your perseverance paid off and that the kit addressed your symptom. The "just clicks when key is turned" behavior is quite common on tractors of this age because the key switch gets worn and the connections in that harness can have added resistance due to corrosion, heat annealing of the spring contact force, etc. If your tractor still has the original key switch you might consider changing it out with a new one as they are not that difficult to swap out nor are they that costly.

As you know, the starter improvement kit you installed is relieving the key switch of the higher current needed to actuate the starter solenoid by interposing another relay, but you may find that a new key switch now will also make the headlights a bit brighter and could address other little quirks the tractor may have.

Chuck
Thank You Chuck , my patience and ability not to give up was tested on what may seem a small matter to some . But I posted this for newbies ,like myself , to go ahead and give things a try. I just looked on Amazon and they have a Stens ignition switch for around twelve bucks . It claims to be a OEM equal part and has mostly good reviews. Would you recommend a switch of this nature? My 318 project is not to have a show room tractor but a good reliable functioning tractor. I also noted they sell a gas cap that has a gauge , any one have any experience with this? Responses welcomed.Thank You
 

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The float gauges in the gas filler cap assemblies are all pretty inaccurate...some members here have 're-calibrated' them a bit and others simple use them as a guide. Your 318 has a reserve fuel valve setting to get you back to the shop if you run out of gas on the main tank pickup...my 322 has a dash light to indicate low fuel. The gas cap gauges also have a tendency to get cloudy lenses over time, so it is your call as to how useful it might be in your particular case.

There are several key switches that look alike but have different internal connections, so be sure you are getting the one configured for the 318 which has coil type ignition and not one for a magneto ignition like some earlier tractor models. Here is the TM1590 service manual information on the 318 key switch:
Text Font Line Circle


Chuck
 

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Starter improvement kit for JD 318

Hi, I was just reading the thread regarding the starter switch, can someone give me more info. on how to obtain one and some instruction on putting it in? Sounds like a good idea, and I think I could use one , thanks,
Pat
 

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Pat,

The switch is easily obtained from your Deere dealer or from our site sponsor as seen here:

John Deere Switch AM38227

The TM1590 wiring diagrams and illustrations will easily guide you through replacing your old one. Always start any electrical servicing/component replacement on your tractor with disconnecting the positive lead from your battery for safety reasons.

Chuck
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Soory took so Long for Reply

Hi, I was just reading the thread regarding the starter switch, can someone give me more info. on how to obtain one and some instruction on putting it in? Sounds like a good idea, and I think I could use one , thanks,
Pat
I don't know if you have gotten the info you were looking for , but I was gone for a bit and could not reply to your question about the starting relay kit. By all means , it would be my opinion to install this kit on your tractor. It was not an easy install for me , to some it may be a piece of cake , but it is challenging if you leave the starter on the tractor and not loosen the engine some way for more operating room . I am so well pleased with the improvement that this kit makes on starting my 318. I believe I bought mine off Amazon. If you have more questions feel free to contact me. I am no mechanic and not a big contributor on this site , and I know it it is frustrating to try and get some help on these type of issues so I am happy to help if I can . Good Luck and you will not be sorry for installing it .
 

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I have a 318 and I'm dealing with 2 clicking devices. First this device attached to the solenoid (what I think is a relay) rapidly clicks. Then I get a single click from the solenoid.
Automotive tire Motor vehicle Gas Electrical wiring Automotive wheel system
 

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Eric, the item circled in your photo is a circuit breaker. This will sense a high current draw, trip, and reset... the clicking you hear is the tripping, resetting, or both! Either the circuit breaker is bad or you've got a high current draw/short. I'd start by replacing the breaker. You'll need an AM33621 from your dealer for $25.

You could also try disconnecting the purple wire from your solenoid and see if circuit breaker still "clicks". Bob
 
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Bob thank you so much. I have this up at my remote cabin and I'm afraid that if I don't get it running soon it'll be snowed in for the season. I thank you very much for your response.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Good advice from Bob. i am not anywhere to the degree that these guys are on this site. But as the original poster of the thread, I have never looked back on installing the starter improvemen kit. It took almost any “ clicking” out of the starter for 6 years. If you do just be patient. Simple but another piece of advice is to clean all battery cable connections and look for any “wear” of insulation on wires thatmay be grounding out.
 

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I started by cleaning connections and reseating cables. My question about the starter improvement kit is if it also works for the solenoids that are not directly attached to the starters? My solenoid is mounted underneath the battery tray and then is wired up to the starter a couple of feet away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Someone more qualified than me will respond but are you absolutely sure what your referring to is the starter solenoid? Is that where the second clicking is coming from?
 

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Yeah it was running just a month or so before I had this problem. It was turning over and just about to start up I could tell. And then suddenly it stopped trying to turn over and started clicking. I will test the battery today and post an update after that. Thank you so very much I really appreciate it. I am in a pretty remote area and about 45 minutes from the nearest town where I'm located so resources are a struggle. On top of that this tractor is about 4 hours away from my home.
 
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