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Yes or No answer please-what ground?
#1289386 Fri Nov 30 2018 05:41 PM
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 60
B
Chief Bottle Washer
Hi Gang,

Is my truck a Positive or Negative ground?

All original...1952 3100, 6-volt, 216 cu in.

I can turn a wrench, but have no mental concept for anything electrical. I have done due-diligence trying to find an answer here, and on other sites, but am getting a lot of conflicting
information. I really wish the answer could be posted on SB's "Tech Tips" link...

Cheers,

Jim

Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289392 Fri Nov 30 2018 06:19 PM
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 8,270
Grease Monkey, Moderator General Truck Talk & Greasy Spoon
Chevy is Negative ground.


Martin
'62 Chevy C-10 Stepside Shortbed (Restomod in progress)
'47 Chevy 3100 5 Window (long term project)
‘65 Chevy Biscayne 4dr 230 I-6 one owner (I’m #2)
‘39 Dodge Businessmans Coupe


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Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Justhorsenround #1289397 Fri Nov 30 2018 07:05 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 6,697
B
General Purpose
Originally Posted by Justhorsenround
Chevy is Negative ground.

Which means the cable attached to the negative post on your battery goes to the motor or the frame or the body. The positive cable goes to the appropriate starter lug.
I guess it's so understood that it's not a tip. Sure like to know what conflicting info you are talking about.

GMC, not to be confused with the company called GM who made them, had positive ground trucks for a while.

Chevrolet trucks with Chevrolet motors, also a part of the company GM, used negative ground.

Just to test a web search, which I recommend, I googled "Chevrolet positive ground" and the first entry gives the answer.

It is possible for someone to convert to positive ground or hook up a battery wrong and the new owner can get confused.


I'm away on an ego trip. Will be back on Feb 30.
I'm not an Auto Mechanic, but I play one on TV.
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Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289398 Fri Nov 30 2018 07:10 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 9,145
G
.
It's not easy to find in the service or owners manual.
But here it is, bottom right of page.
"Connect battery ground strap to battery negative post."
http://chevy.oldcarmanualproject.com/shop/1948_51truck/51ctsm1223.htm


1951 GMC 250 in the Project Journals
1948 Chevrolet 6400 - Detroit Diesel 4-53T - Roadranger 10 speed overdrive - 4 wheel disc brakes
1952 Chevrolet 3800 pickup
---All pictures---
"First, get a clear notion of what you desire to accomplish, and then in all probability you will succeed in doing it..." -Henry Maudslay-
Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289404 Fri Nov 30 2018 07:53 PM
Joined: Aug 2018
Posts: 362
2
Shop Shark
i'm curious now what would happen if you swapped it to positive ground by mistake...
you would be able to start the engine,
all the lights would be find
but... the generator and amp meter wouldn't like it much at all, that might lead to a damaged regulator and amp meter

the gas gauge should probably read okay
-s

Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289424 Fri Nov 30 2018 10:07 PM
Joined: Feb 2004
Posts: 19,891
H
Boltergeist
Lights and starter won't care. The ignition and charging systems will have a few problems, possibly including stuck cutout relay points in the regulator if a DC generator is installed. If the vehicle is equipped with an alternator there will be an immediate dead short that will fry the alternator and possibly set the wiring harness on fire.
Jerry


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Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289427 Fri Nov 30 2018 10:48 PM
Joined: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,687
R
Shop Shark
I did a 12 volt conversion on a 55 T-Bird a few years ago. Prior to the conversion the owner had the cables switched as he didn't have any knowledge of the differences in vehicles that used 6 volt systems. All he had ever seen were late model cars with 12 volts. I recall it did run but I believe he had it towed home a lot. It performed great with the 12 volt conversion and using a 10SI alternator.
Fred

Re: Yes or No answer please-what ground?
Bwana-Jim #1289429 Fri Nov 30 2018 11:06 PM
Joined: Oct 2018
Posts: 60
B
Chief Bottle Washer
Thanks everyone, you've bailed me out one more time!

Jim


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