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Changed plugs & wires, distributor cap & rotor, now I have a problem by BlueBrat
Started on: 05-09-2015 05:25 PM
Replies: 7 (295 views)
Last post by: Formula88 on 05-11-2015 10:51 AM
BlueBrat
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Report this Post05-09-2015 05:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BlueBratClick Here to visit BlueBrat's HomePageClick Here to Email BlueBratSend a Private Message to BlueBratEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Hi, I have an '86 2m4 SE. Haven't had to post anything so far because I usually find the info I need, but here's an odd one that maybe someone can offer some insight.

So today I changed out the plugs, plug wires, distributor & rotor. And it started up and ran just fine, in fact I turned it off, let it sit and started it again about 3 more times. I was having an issue with the car not starting again after running for a while, which is why I did this bit of work, and it needed it. So far so good, right?

Then I put it into reverse and it stalled.

So I waited a few moments, then started it up again and we're running. Waited some more moments, put it in reverse, and it stalled. Except this time, the battery seems to be dead, as there is no electriciy flowing in the car to do anything. Maybe I blew a fuse? I will check later, my back needs to rest for a while after dealing with that distributor location.

Would the stalling indicate I need to re-time it?

[This message has been edited by BlueBrat (edited 05-09-2015).]

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tshark
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Report this Post05-09-2015 06:24 PM Click Here to See the Profile for tsharkSend a Private Message to tsharkEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
...

[This message has been edited by tshark (edited 09-08-2018).]

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phonedawgz
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Report this Post05-09-2015 06:53 PM Click Here to See the Profile for phonedawgzClick Here to visit phonedawgz's HomePageClick Here to Email phonedawgzSend a Private Message to phonedawgzEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
When you did this work did you disconnect the battery?

Either way - Take off the two battery cables, wire brush the two surfaces and put them back together.

The lead surfaces have a thin film of oxidation on them. You can't see it well but there is only a little bit of the metal touching and the oxidation is holding the other part of the surface apart. You hit the key to start and the only one part that is making contact has a high current running through it. It vaporizes with a kinda snap noise and the car goes dead.

What usually happens then is the owner takes off the battery cables, and then puts them on. That makes a new part contact but still a small part. Turn the key to start and the car goes dead again.

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When the car doesn't start after it has ran for a while. Does it crank and crank just fine but it just never fires. And then when it has cooled enough it starts up no problem?

[This message has been edited by phonedawgz (edited 05-09-2015).]

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Spoon
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Report this Post05-09-2015 11:41 PM Click Here to See the Profile for SpoonSend a Private Message to SpoonEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
You said you ( changed out the plugs, plug wires, distributor & rotor). Did you mean distributor cap?

If you pulled the distributor by all means recheck the timing. You should also replace the distributor cap and from the same manuf as the rotor.
Examine all the replacement parts closely. I've seen poorly made rotors that actually wobbled on the shaft and caps that had aluminum or non copper contacts. Get good quality parts or you could be worse off after the tuneup.

Spoon


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BlueBrat
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Report this Post05-10-2015 08:40 AM Click Here to See the Profile for BlueBratClick Here to visit BlueBrat's HomePageClick Here to Email BlueBratSend a Private Message to BlueBratEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by phonedawgz:

When you did this work did you disconnect the battery?

Yep, always.

 
quote
Originally posted by phonedawgz:
Either way - Take off the two battery cables, wire brush the two surfaces and put them back together.

I'll give that a shot. Those need to be replaced anyway, the screws have been stripped pretty bad and the positive cable has exposed wire from the shielding coming off.

 
quote
Originally posted by phonedawgz:

When the car doesn't start after it has ran for a while. Does it crank and crank just fine but it just never fires. And then when it has cooled enough it starts up no problem?


When it doesn't start after running, it will crank but not fire, so your guess is correct. I'm hoping this maintenance does the trick, although after looking at the distributor when pulling off the cap, it probably at least needs a new coil, maybe replace the whole thing.
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BlueBrat
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Report this Post05-10-2015 08:43 AM Click Here to See the Profile for BlueBratClick Here to visit BlueBrat's HomePageClick Here to Email BlueBratSend a Private Message to BlueBratEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post

BlueBrat

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Member since Mar 2015
 
quote
Originally posted by Spoon:

You said you ( changed out the plugs, plug wires, distributor & rotor). Did you mean distributor cap?

If you pulled the distributor by all means recheck the timing. You should also replace the distributor cap and from the same manuf as the rotor.
Examine all the replacement parts closely. I've seen poorly made rotors that actually wobbled on the shaft and caps that had aluminum or non copper contacts. Get good quality parts or you could be worse off after the tuneup.


Yes, a tune-up kit from rockauto with some of Oger's recommendations from his cave. So cap & rotor did get replaced by same manufacturer as well as the cables. I need to figure out the no-juice issue before I can do the timing.

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BlueBrat
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Report this Post05-10-2015 11:21 AM Click Here to See the Profile for BlueBratClick Here to visit BlueBrat's HomePageClick Here to Email BlueBratSend a Private Message to BlueBratEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by phonedawgz:
Either way - Take off the two battery cables, wire brush the two surfaces and put them back together.


Success! This was apparently the issue. As I mentioned in a previous respone to you, those battery cables sorely need replacing. I cleaned the ends off with a wire brush, reconnected the battery and Fiero started right up (not before I put the windows back up, it's about to rain here in Delaware today)!

Great advice.

I ran it for a little while and did manage to put it in reverse and drive without it stalling, however since setting the timing is in order, I'm going to order a new rotor & coil after seeing what the existing one looks like. They're not too expensive and may as well take care of the whole thing.

One thing is certain, the new plugs, cables & rotor definitely have improved its idle and response to the throttle.

Thanks again for the help, I'm sure I'll have more. Once I get the running issues taken care of I hope to start on the suspension soon, it's in really rough condition. And new dog-bone mounts, they're trashed.
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Formula88
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Report this Post05-11-2015 10:51 AM Click Here to See the Profile for Formula88Send a Private Message to Formula88Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
Also check your ground cables. Do a search for grounds and you'll find some good info. If the battery cables were bad, there's a good chance the grounds may need attention too and they can cause all kinds of weird issues.
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