There's no fuse of any kind in the larger starter cable. If you had grounded the end for a considerable length of time that cable would have produced a huge cloud of smoke and the neighborhood would have known it!
You need to be looking at the smaller starter wire. When it gets 12 volts, that's when the solenoid engages and kicks in the electrical contacts for the starter motor. In a few car models they do away with the starter relay to save money and run the solenoid right off the ignition switch. That solenoid can draw up to 20 amps so that's a bunch for such little contacts.
Have a helper turn the ignition switch to "crank" while you measure at the starter to see if you're getting full battery voltage on the smaller wire. If you're not, look at the wiring diagram to see what comes first from the battery, the ignition switch or the neutral safety switch. Go to that terminal and check for 12 volts. Also check both wires on both switches for signs of overheating and melted connector bodies.
Friday, September 28th, 2012 AT 5:29 PM