1986 Chevrolet El Camino • 10,000 miles

My key ignition cylinder turns freely, yet I don't get any engagmnet with the ignition switch. I get lights on my panel but no engagement. I took off the steering wheel, turn signal hub, removed the ignition key cylinder and then removed the cover bowl to see if anything was visibly broke. Everything was fine, so before I placed everything back together, I place the ignition key cylinder on the column, turned the key and it starts right up, every time. So I put the cover back on, insert the key cylinder, install the set screw and other oarts, turn the key, and NOTHING, just lights on my dash board. Take it off again, turn the key, starts right up. What mechanism is preventing the ignition switch from sending the circuit to the starter?
December 26, 2012.

Check the rack that goes down to the actual ignition switch


Dec 26, 2012.
Thanks for the response. As I mentioned above, the car starts right up with the key cylinder in place without the turn signal and bowl assembly in place. If the key cylinder starts the car, then I can assume that the rack is connected to the ignition switch.

But when I place the bowl cover back onto the column and put the key cylinder into place and turn the key, the cylinder turns to start, I get my dash lights but no engagement?

I am trying to figure out what is preventing the rack from engaging with the ignition switch after everything is assembled?

I noticed that there is a cutout inside the bowl cover which appears to line up with a small latch that drops down from the key cylinder. If that is not dropping down after assembly, do I need to buy a new key cylinder?

Dec 27, 2012.