Changing engine key switch ignition to push-button

As I said earlier, I would stick with simple heavy duty operators.  Cole Herse etc.  The small control stuff doesn't hold up, I ended up pulling all of it off of our Beta panel.  Slug and others will insist every boat from Europe only uses the small stuff but I wouldn't do it.  The up side on the simple ones are any automotive store anywhere stocks them. Definitely stay away from illuminated operators most cheep ones have pretty short duty cycle.

 

seaker

Member
333
44
Maine
I hate key switches.  I know of 2 keys that broke off in the switch.  And 2 others that stuck on starting as burned up the starter.  I like the on switch and then push to start.  

 

Blue Crab

benthivore
15,355
2,368
Outer Banks
As I said earlier, I would stick with simple heavy duty operators.  Cole Herse etc.  The small control stuff doesn't hold up, I ended up pulling all of it off of our Beta panel.  Slug and others will insist every boat from Europe only uses the small stuff but I wouldn't do it.  The up side on the simple ones are any automotive store anywhere stocks them. Definitely stay away from illuminated operators most cheep ones have pretty short duty cycle.
This was always Mainesail's view too and illustrated with great pics.

 

Startracker

Member
390
103
Van Isl.
Thanks for the replies.

Thinking this through a bit more, I think I’m changing my mind on this one.  Realized that the benefits of keeping the key switch solution simpler outweigh the benefits of going keyless.

Think I’m gonna just keep the key switch and install some guards around it - little blocks of starboard as a “roof and walls” left/top/right around it.  That’ll solve the potential problem of bumping into the key and breaking it (but not solve the only minor problem of access for opening the ice chest door below, which is just slightly prevented from fully opening by the key sticking out).  
 

I’ll just change the panel lights toggle switch to a push button, but go with a simple solution for key switch.  That’s how this whole idea started, with the toggle switch for panel lights.  And the idea, only half-formed —and meanwhile interrupted by a hundred rigging and other projects over the winter— migrated like a lost juvenile salmon, over to the key switch project...up the wrong stream  :)
I am going to switch to switches as well.  Not the 2 momentary push buttons, but either the following:

1 DPST rocker switch or a cole hersey pull on.   One pole energizes the push button for start, the other allows the engine to stay running, plus a push button start switch, and another push button for glow plugs if they are present.  If I had an electric fuel pump, I'd also wire that to another switch, makes bleeding so much easier.  Cole hersey waterproof push button switches are the same SS switch inside but a rubber cap that lasts about 3 years outside over the top.  A pack is 5$ and will last ages in your toolbox.

 
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167149

Super Anarchist
a pretty simple and effective solution is to do what a lot of gensets use...... a make on rise oil pressure switch as the  "Key" and a  simple starter button wired before this so you can have an inside start switch as well as one by the helm, these oil pressure switches kick in at about 10 ish psi  and are pretty foolproof

 

Quickstep192

Anarchist
736
133
Chesapeake
a pretty simple and effective solution is to do what a lot of gensets use...... a make on rise oil pressure switch as the  "Key" and a  simple starter button wired before this so you can have an inside start switch as well as one by the helm, these oil pressure switches kick in at about 10 ish psi  and are pretty foolproof
This sounds very interesting. Could you provide more detail? Maybe a wiring diagram?

 

Startracker

Member
390
103
Van Isl.
This sounds very interesting. Could you provide more detail? Maybe a wiring diagram?
You wire up a oil pressure sensor to the engine, run one of the two wires to a hot, the other to a NC relay, other leg of the NC relay to ground, then a constant hot on the input side and the output side where the run wire was on the old ignition switch.  Engine starter is on a push button and you can put them wherever.  So basically when you crank the motor long enough it will close the oil sender and close the circuit energizing the relay and therefore the run circuit. 

 

Quickstep192

Anarchist
736
133
Chesapeake
I like this idea, having just broken the key off in the ignition (again). Where do these come from?  Thanks!
I’d like to find a source for these that are suitable for boat use. All of the ones I found had some amount of steel or aluminum components. I guess they’re cheap enough that they could be replaced every few years, but that wouldn’t be my preference. 

 

Startracker

Member
390
103
Van Isl.
I’d like to find a source for these that are suitable for boat use. All of the ones I found had some amount of steel or aluminum components. I guess they’re cheap enough that they could be replaced every few years, but that wouldn’t be my preference. 
https://mgispeedware.com/product/aircraft-switch-covers/

Buy just the cover that installs on the retaining ring, and use a Cole Hersey waterproof one like :https://www.waytekwire.com/item/43902/Cole-Hersee-55025-Sealed-Waterproof-Toggle-Switch/

 

Startracker

Member
390
103
Van Isl.
For the absurdity of it, part of me wants to use something like this: https://wwsimstore.com/p/315.html

It's a copy of the control panel/throttle from an FA-18 but addressable functions from the buttons for use in a simulator. 

Wayy too much effort but it would be funny.  Right up there with using the joystick as for steering/openCPN controller, I think the 9 way toggle hats would work well for controlling the pointer.  I know it's dumb but part of me is still tempted. 

upload_a4a8b9d692c648cf0f55d5cf9f825db5.jpg

 
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El Borracho

Sam’s friend
6,426
2,441
Pacific Rim
Replaced my corroded key switch with this Blue Sea panel. Swapped the included toggle switches for pair of ON-OFF-ON toggles. Installed it in a nearby pocket so the engine panel could be sealed behind plexiglas.

One switch is RUN-OFF-STOP(M). The other is START(M)-OFF-PREHEAT(M). The (M) indicates a momentary position. Blue Sea sells all the switch types and rubber condoms.

 
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