When I put the key in the ignition and turn to “run”, dash lights come on and the radio plays. However, when I try to engage something that draws more current, like start the car (and sometimes just turning on the turn signals or headlights - but not always), everything goes dead. I discovered that the frame is now at 12 volts (checked against the battery negative post - see below). However, the system “resets” itself and, with the key in the run position that dash lights are on again. The “reset” time varies from a few seconds to about a minute (or longer). Sometimes, just putting the key in the run position triggers everything to shut down. However, the door open chime is never enough current draw to trigger this (if in fact it is current draw).
I initially thought that I had a bad ground because I found that when I jumped the battery negative post to the frame (strut bolt specifically) the car would start. I discovered the frame was at 12 volts as I was shocked when I tried to remove the jumper cable. Given the above, I have no idea why the car started. I initially thought that the starter coil was shorting out to the frame, but then I discovered that other current draws would initiate the electrical system shutdown.