L-29 battery polarity

  • gonewiththewind
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22 Jul 2007 13:57 #7556 by gonewiththewind
gonewiththewind created the topic: L-29 battery polarity
I just recently bought an L-29. Had one many years ago and have worked on several for other people. But I ran into something last night that concerned me. The shop manual calls for the battery to be connected as positive ground. My L-29 has the battery connected negative ground, yet the car cranks, runs, charges, etc. The only gitch that I noticed is that the oil level gauge immediately runs all the way to the top the minute the key is turned on, and the gas gauge does not work at all. The gauge problem may just be a wiring problem. I can reverse the battery leads, polarize the generator to run as positive ground, reverse the ammeter wires to show correct deflection, but what about the starter? Will it then try to run backwards? The Duesenberg is a negative ground car, don't know about Auburn, it's been too many years. Does someone out there know if the L-29 is positive or negative ground, and what trouble I am going to run into trying to correct it?

Bill Bickers

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22 Jul 2007 14:34 #7558 by Josh Malks
Josh Malks replied the topic:
Starters on most cars are insensitive to polarity. Don't know why the L-29 would be different.

Josh B. Malks
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23 Jul 2007 02:51 #7562 by mikespeed35
mikespeed35 replied the topic: Polarity
L-29's are positive ground.
CORDially Mike

Mike Huffman

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23 Jul 2007 14:42 #7568 by sds1861
sds1861 replied the topic:
Hello Bill:

I just went through this exact situation with a friend's 1929 DeSoto that was hooked up backwards when he bought it (they are positive ground also). The starter rotated in the correct direction, but had a tendancy to disengage too quickly when the engine started to fire. The previous owner could get never it running. We hooked up the battery correctly and had it running in no time.

Don't forget to reverse the coil wires when you change it back to positive ground. + terminal to the distributor, - terminal from the battery.

Best regards,
Steve Stevens

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  • gonewiththewind
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24 Jul 2007 13:06 #7572 by gonewiththewind
gonewiththewind replied the topic:
Thanks everyone for your input! I guess reversing it will be this weekend's project, shouldn't take too long. But the coil is a different matter since it is part of the ignition switch, hopefully it won't turn out to be too much of a problem. I hope that they just left it connected the right way. I guess I'll know when I get under the dash!
CORDially, Bill

Bill Bickers

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24 Jul 2007 13:47 #7573 by Josh Malks
Josh Malks replied the topic:
The coil will work no matter which way it is connected. The important thing is its polarity relative to the sparkplug. It loses up to 15% of its voltage at the plug, if connected the wrong way. Use a Sparklite to check this. See ACD Newsletter 2005-8 or go to www.nurex.com .

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