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Hi,
after browsing through all the forums and seeing many starting problems resolved, I was wondering if anyone can help here:
Situation:
Mostly starting, sometimes not. When not starting, the glow light is one and there is a single click sound. I could easily clutch -start the engine.
THEN: hooray, i found that, when I connected the 'trigger wire' with the plus on the battery (I think people also call this 'shorting' the starter), the starter motor worked.
My QUESTION: what does this now mean?
1. is the starter motor definitely fine? yes?
2. there is no current coming to the trigger wire when it should.... how to fix that?
To make things more complicated (me for, but this could help you with assessing:) after this, I checked and the van started beautifully with the ingnition key.... How could shorting now have taken away the problem?
All very puzzling to me...
 

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.... How could shorting now have taken away the problem?
........
Jealousy, when anyone's ability to do the job properly is challenged they seem to improve beyond belief :D

Perhaps the ignition switch is/was a bit resistive as was the solenoid wire and your shorting it delivered enough power to clean at least one dirty connection.
 

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dirty contact on solanoid trigger wire,
shorting the starter is the two big terminals, the main battery feed and the wire that goes to the starter , both are conected to the solanoid, the triger wire is what you sid it is, a trigger , 12v on that terminal activates the solanoid, so all you did was bypass the ignition switch, the swich can go faulty so could be that, but if it now behaves it was probably just a dirty contact ,
 
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