420SEL 1990 - electrical short? - just goes dead

Analysis of 1990 420 SEL: Car goes dead
January 2004:
Driving to San Francisco from Sunnyvale - 45 minutes into the drive:     Radio stopped playing
    Heater motor stopped     Airbag light came on     Brake light came on Car started to serge (like stepping on the gas and letting off), got off freeway and pulled into a parking lot, once the rpms were lower than 1,000, the car stopped running.     Turning the ignition switch to the start position had no response (dead)     Head lights were bright
Repair:     New battery and new alternator.
March 2004
Driving from San Francisco to Sunnyvale - driving through San Francisco with air conditioner on and radio on, then started to drive south on 280, about 1 hour of driving,     Radio stopped playing     Heater motor stopped     Airbag light came on     Brake light came on Car started to serge (like stepping on the gas and letting off), kept on driving at 70 mph until reach Sunnyvale Saratoga Rd.
Kept car at 1,000 rpm at all stop lights with foot on gas and foot on brake. When turning into driveway, the car went below 1,000 rpm and stopped running.     Turning the ignition switch to the start position had no response (dead)     Head lights were bright
Repair:     Replaced antenna assembly and replaced alternator which burned out.
May 2004
Driving from Sunnyvale to Palo Alto to San Jose, about 1 hour of driving with air conditioner and radio on
Came to intersection and car went below 1,000 rpm and the stopped running.
Turning the ignition switch to the start position had no response (dead)     Head lights were bright
    Waiting about 10 minutes - the car started. I kept the car above 1,000 rpm to get home.
Next day - running like nothing happened.
Have any suggestions.
Thanks David
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    Turning the ignition switch to the start position had no

car went below 1,000 rpm and the stopped

SUGGESTION- More testing, fewer repairs. Good luck with your gremlins!
Bill Ditmire Ditmire Motorworks,Inc. 425 White Horse Pike Absecon,NJ 08201 http://www.ditmire.com 609-641-3392
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Stay away from Sunnyvale !! P.S, make sure the the little battery indicator light in the cluster comes on everytime just before starting with the key in #2 position. If there is a bad connection or bulb then 100 new alternators wouldn't charge the battery. Martin. Autobahn Auto
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I'd start checking all the wiring that's easily viewable. Also check each fuse and reseat both the fuses and relays. Keep your nose alert to any burnt smell while looking. Especially look closely at the starter motor and solenoid.

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the problem could be the ignition switch.
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It might not hurt to locate, remove clean and replace the ground connections. At least it's free ;-)
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It does seem to be the ignition switch but then why did he burn out the alternator... or did the mechanic just guess and replace a perfectly good alternator?

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if the lights were still bright it sounds like the battery was still charged, doesn't sound like the alternator, if they try to replace it again insist on having it bench tested and you be there to see the results, or take it yourself to have it tested. mark
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I agree completely... bright headlights are the clue. Furthermore, all the other symptoms can be duplicated by simply turning the ignition key one click counter clockwise from where it would normally be when the engine is running. Either the switch is failing or maybe the wires from the switch are shorting.

charged,
on
yourself
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