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Greetings all, first post! My wife insists on hanging on to her 1998 Sable - third transmssion and second engine, 250,000 miles. (Car of the month material?)

After managing to lose the master key, (which I think was a transponder as it had a rubber fob), while on vacation, I had a locksmith come out and make a new key. It was not a transponder type. All worked fine and I came home.

The car ran a few weeks until the key refused to work anymore. Neither would my spare, which I had at home. (It is not a transponder type either.) I mean they would not turn the cylinder. Failure to turn the cylinder is not transponder related, I know. It was probably caused by twelve years of an old worn out key being replaced by a brand new sharp one!

I have learned that striking the key with a hammer would probably have made it work but it is much too late for that now. Drilling out the pin was not successful as the metal all around said pin is much softer than the pin, however, a 3/8ths drill allowed me to get the entire cylinder out.

My current situation is that I have installed a new cylinder, all the lights come on and the engine cranks - it just will not start. Next I will try the procedure for validating a new master key. In am very grateful for this forum as I have learned a lot.

My question is: why the heck have flat keys with no transponder worked for years on this car? And I have my fears that I will not be able to get the procedure to work, as the replacement cylinder and its keys do not seem to be the transponder type, (They are Lincoln marked keys with a rubber trim rather than full rubber fob.)

I guess I have to get some new transponder keys, have a smith cut them to fit the cylinder and then do the master key renewal procedure. I am thinking I am PATSI according to what I read. (Early 1998)
 

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Maybe,possibly,perhaps it has nothing to do with the key. After all those years and miles the ignition switch might be shot.

I don't think 98s had a transponder in the key. Just a black plastic handle. That's the case in my parents' 99 Sable.
 
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