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Discussion Starter #1
I am actually having problem with my ignition switch/key assembly. I had a flat over the weekend and took the car to Schwabs so they could get to it this morning.

They called and said when they pulled it in, they couldn't get the key to turn off. Just as they claim, the key will not turn back past the "on" position, although it will turn to start just fine. Also the piece on the outside of the key seems "loose" from the key, and the key will come out when its running.

I drove home and pulled the coil wire to kill and disconnected the battery to save it.

I am just wondering, is this normal wear and tear or something they did? The manager said if its our fault, we'll fix it, I am planning to take it to the shop in the next few days to at least see what he thinks.
 

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Sounds more like the ignition switch needs to be replaced. Typical on the lock cylinder for the 1990-95 models. They do that with age. So in all honesty, just coincidence that it happened.

The ignition lock cylinder is rarely the issue.
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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Welcome to the wonderful world of the Ford 10-cut locking system on Taurus/Sable vehicles. 1984-1996 models use it. The Taurus/Sable version of that ignition system uses a large 'eared' attachment on the face of the rotating part of the ignition cylinder, the better for turning leverage. Problem is, it's only staked to the plug (the rotating part) and with age and use the staking works loose from the plug, allowing the ears to rotate freely. Try turning them with the key out of the lock - if they turn, replace the cylinder. In extreme cases, a poorly-cut key in a worn lock like this can result in a key being cut in half like in a cigar cutter.

Replacement 10-cut ignition cylinders are about $35.00 or less. If you want to maintain the one-key-for-doors-and-ignition design, a locksmith will use a replacement made by ASP or All-Lock and he/she can cut the door cuts of your existing key onto the keys to the new ignition. From the sound of what you are experiencing, I recommend you do it last month!;)
 

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Ford didn't make an 84 Taurus, or 85... it started in 86, and the same ignition was used up until 95. They changed the tumbler in 96, at least the "wings" changed from metal to plastic. And the 86-89 use a different tumbler design.
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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Sorry for the mis-type. The Ford 10-cut system was used from 1984-1996, 1997 and a few years later for some trucks. I worked on hundreds of them, especially replacing worn out ignitions for the local Ford and L-M dealers - not to mention the Lee County Sheriff's Department, who put a lot of use on their vehicles. Crown Vics, Mustangs, Tauruses and the L-M cousins all used it. The plastic plug face you refer to is a hallmark of the newer Ford 8-cut design. The 86-89 door wafers differ from the later ones in that the later ones incorporated small ridges on the sides to make picking the locks more difficult; didn't do much, they were and are still easy to impression. The ignition wafers never changed, since the ignition was a sidebar locking design and one doesn't pick them. One either uses tryout keys or drills the sidebar after yanking the ears off with channellocks.
 

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Did you ever like how easy it was to unlock a Gen 1/2? :lol: Lift hand up, insert tool into handle slots and push the lock rod up. Not one of Ford's better designs...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So the "ears" do not rotate without the key, or with the key for that matter. At best they rotate 1/32nd of a turn around.

I'm not complaining about that too much, mainly that the stupid thing won't turn off, I'm tired of getting shocked by the coil lol :)

The key is already different, I guess they had the problem once before. In any case, I need to replace the key part? Or is it the switch?
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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I can't complain about doing Ford lockouts, they made up for the Saab and Citroen jobs!

Remove and replace the lock cylinder. Most common cause of that scenario is the staked-down spring cover inside the lock has become unstaked, at which point it jams in the sidebar recess in the lock shell preventing counterclockwise rotation to OFF/LOCK/ACC.

If it does rotate properly, and starts but won't shut down, I'd suspect the switch itself.

BTW, I just re-read the your first post avout what Schwabs offered to do. In all honesty, those spring covers do work loose with age, especially on the discount auto parts cheap replacements. The plug's only pot metal, pretty soft stuff. You could try to get a freebie out of them, but these locks and their quirks are pretty well-known to anyone who works on them.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Replaced it this morning 14.99 and less than a minute of my time and I am back on the road :)

I can't tell if it was their fault or not, in either case for how much it cost I am not going to sweat it
 

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Exalted Grand Poobah
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There ya go, glad to hear it.
 
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