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  Stern light shaft won't fit into receptacle

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Author Topic:   Stern light shaft won't fit into receptacle
lefty93 posted 09-18-2012 01:54 PM ET (US)   Profile for lefty93   Send Email to lefty93  
I have a 2002 Dauntless 160. All of a sudden the Perko stern light will no longer go all the way into the round receptacle on the stern. Even when the little screw head on the shaft of the stern light is lined up with the slot in the receptacle, it still won't go all the way in to the contacts. It seems to be hitting something but visual inspection shows no obstruction. The connection pins look to be lined up correctly as well. WD 40 doesn't solve the problem. Anyone else ever have this problem? Any thoughts/suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
Mr T posted 09-18-2012 10:58 PM ET (US)     Profile for Mr T  Send Email to Mr T     
Take a look at the light pole where the plastic cap with the terminals is located- any signs where it might not be round anymore? Also look for scratching, on the pole itself


I ask cause I had the same problem with a light and it turned out that the pole itself got knocked out of round while being stored in a locker. I got it back to close enough with a pair of channel locks.

lefty93 posted 09-19-2012 11:10 AM ET (US)     Profile for lefty93  Send Email to lefty93     
Thanks. I will check that out, although I have not noticed anything unusual about the light pole.
swist posted 09-19-2012 12:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for swist  Send Email to swist     
You not only have to check that the pins aren't bent, but that the mating female socket receptacles are also in good shape - they are usually a split design wherein the two halves separate slightly as the pin is inserted.

It is very easy for a slightly misaligned pin, or some other problem, to cause the two halves of the female receptacle to either get too close together, or pushed slightly off to the side, or slightly cocked to each other.

If this is the case, when the pin hits them on insertion, not only might it not go in, but it mwill make the situation even worse by pushing the halves of the receptacle even more out of alignment.

swist posted 09-19-2012 12:55 PM ET (US)     Profile for swist  Send Email to swist     
I forgot to mention that sometimes the electrical contact of the female receptacle is a coil spring that the male pin fits very tightly into. Any misalignment or out-of-round distortion of the spring can cause the same problem.
lefty93 posted 09-21-2012 09:30 AM ET (US)     Profile for lefty93  Send Email to lefty93     
Thanks for that info. I will check those things out.

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