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Occasional trouble starting my car. on 1993 Mercury Sable

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This car has a previous owner who did not take good care of it. I got an estimate from a shop in town for $2801 for total repairs. The one thing that I really need fixed is the ignition. I do not know exactly which part of the ignition is bad, it stalled out twice so far and would not turn over or make any sounds while trying to turn the vehicle on. There was no clicking or anything. The battery is working fine and other parts have recently been replaced. Is this a problem with my ignition lock cylinder or could it be a different part?
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How do you finally get it started? Does it just start after awhile, do you jump start it or what?
It starts after sitting for a few hours. And I guess I got one part wrong. It never stalled, I guess it was shut off completely and it sat for about 5 minutes before trying to turn it back on. That's when we had this problem.
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