I just replaced the engine on my E30-1987 (2.7L). just prior to the transplant, I drove the car into the gagage and unhooked the battery. I finely got the engine in, hooked everything up,charged battery and it will not start. The fuel pump is whuring and all the lights are on, but the started does not make a sound. The following is what I have tried/determined.
- the 2 cables are attached to the + post of the starter and the ignition plug is connected to the solenoid.
- I am getting about 11-12 volts to the started via the cable.
- I tried to bridge the starter by putting a 12V signal to the ignition wire (nothing happened).
- my wife turned the key and I did not get a 12V (or any voltage for that matter) signal from the ignition wire to ground.
- I checked for continuity across the engine ground strap.

As you know it is a PITA to get the starter out to bench test. Also, if I am not getting a signal from the ignition to activate the solenoid it may not be the starter or do I have 2 (or more) problems. I was very careful to hook up everything before hooking up the battery, so I don't think I shorted anything.

Any suggestions before removing the starter? Are there fuseable links? Is there a relay that could cause this? Are the diagnostic steps I performed logical?

Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated. I will post the solution.