Author Topic: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark  (Read 6867 times)

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Offline 84eaglelmz

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I rebuilt and replaced the transmission, and while it was out I did a Ignition upgrade with a pentronix flamethrower. Now when I went to finally start the car, Nothing happened. I found out the ground screw under the coil wasnt being grounded with the wire, So i Hooked that up with a wire to my negative battery terminal. and it turned over, Now Im not getting any spark, There is a full 12 volts going to the coil, I tested it on my volt meter. But when I took a spark plug out, it didnt spark.

Any Ideas? Its been almost a year since I drove this.

Offline mach1mustang351

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It isn't too common but brand new parts can be bad out of the box. Its been a while since I had a 258 car but is it supposed to be 12v with a resistance in the coil? If the coil is rated for say 6 volts and you have 12 to it. It could have burned up
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Offline 84eaglelmz

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I hope its not bad, is there a way to test them? I was told this coil takes 12 volts and has 3 ohm resitance in the coil. I have to ground the spark plug to see if there is spark though correct? Maybe I did it wrong.

Offline 84eaglelmz

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i grounded the spark plug this time and still no spark. How do I know if the ICM or Coil is bad? They are both brand new parts.

Offline eaglebeek

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i grounded the spark plug this time and still no spark. How do I know if the ICM or Coil is bad? They are both brand new parts.
OK...start with this. Get a 12v test light. Connect the ground wire from the test light to the battery negative post or to a clean place on the chassis. Now touch the test light's probe to the negative side of the ignition coil. You may have to straighten a paper clip and poke the wire into the back of the coil connector so the wire makes contact with the terminal that clips to the coil. Now have someone crank over the engine while your test light is on the coil. Remember that everything must be connected as if you're going to start the engine.

If the light does not flash at all and you're sure you have voltage to the positive side of the coil I would suspect a faulty coil. Before you throw away the coil, be sure the wire coming off the negative side of the coil isn't shorted out.

If your test light comes on and stays on while cranking you have either a bad connection somewhere or the ignition module has failed. It's also possible the ignition module isn't getting a signal from the pickup inside the distributor. You can ohm out the distributor pickup. I don't remember the exact value it should have but iirc it should be ~50 ohms.

If the test light flashes on and off while cranking the ignition module and distributor pickup should be OK. You should also get a high-voltage spark each time the test light flashes on.

Let us know what you find and we'll go from there. :eagle:
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Offline 84eaglelmz

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Ok thank you, Ill be sure to do this morning. And ill post the results asap. Where does that green wire ground to? I know the wire that fits under the solenoid does not ground anything, So i had to connect the bottom ground to the negative battery post.  Also when I keep cranking over the engine the negative battery cable starts to smoke slightly.  but it did this ever since i got the car and upgraded the Coil.

Offline 84eaglelmz

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If there is any one who has time and can text anytime friday or saturday, I would appreciate someone doing that for me, I know my ignorance is annoying but I never grew up with this, This 84 car is 5 years older than I am.  IF not Ill stick with this forum.


Thank you

Offline carnuck

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Green wire by the coil goes to the negative side of the coil. Power goes to +. It won't start without that. HEI dist needs only 1 wire to run if you decide to swap.
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Offline BenM

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Here's the basic Duraspark wiring from Ford:


The ICM breaks the orange and purple wires to adjust timing. Importantly, that ground to the distributor should be good and the coil+ needs power both at start and run. (It's factory grounded through the distributor so that the ground wire in the ignition harness doesn't accidentally have to carry the full current of the car body.)

The big round Ford connectors can develop connection problems, so you'll want to pull them all apart and clean everything out then reapply some white lithium or dialectic grease to protect them from water.

Also, make sure your condenser is not shorted out.
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Offline 84eaglelmz

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i grounded the spark plug this time and still no spark. How do I know if the ICM or Coil is bad? They are both brand new parts.
OK...start with this. Get a 12v test light. Connect the ground wire from the test light to the battery negative post or to a clean place on the chassis. Now touch the test light's probe to the negative side of the ignition coil. You may have to straighten a paper clip and poke the wire into the back of the coil connector so the wire makes contact with the terminal that clips to the coil. Now have someone crank over the engine while your test light is on the coil. Remember that everything must be connected as if you're going to start the engine.

If the light does not flash at all and you're sure you have voltage to the positive side of the coil I would suspect a faulty coil. Before you throw away the coil, be sure the wire coming off the negative side of the coil isn't shorted out.

If your test light comes on and stays on while cranking you have either a bad connection somewhere or the ignition module has failed. It's also possible the ignition module isn't getting a signal from the pickup inside the distributor. You can ohm out the distributor pickup. I don't remember the exact value it should have but iirc it should be ~50 ohms.

If the test light flashes on and off while cranking the ignition module and distributor pickup should be OK. You should also get a high-voltage spark each time the test light flashes on.

Let us know what you find and we'll go from there. :eagle:




Ok heres what happened, The test light had 12 volts on the coil, as soon as I turned the key to run, I pushed the button to start the car (yes the button, The key ignition stopped working, so It now has a button to crank the engine, It did work for years before the upgrade) and the light stayed lit without flashing.

What shall I do next?  :eagle: :eagle:

Offline 84eaglelmz

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Re: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark
« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2013, 02:11:29 PM »


Thats how I have the solenoid connected. 



Thats the ignition wire? That didnt work I believe it was never connected



Thats the ground wire that dont work




and thats the coil.

Offline BenM

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Re: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2013, 03:27:03 PM »
Ok heres what happened, The test light had 12 volts on the coil, as soon as I turned the key to run, I pushed the button to start the car (yes the button, The key ignition stopped working, so It now has a button to crank the engine, It did work for years before the upgrade) and the light stayed lit without flashing.

What shall I do next?  :eagle: :eagle:

The ground is for the Neutral Safety Switch, ignore it so long as the engine cranks.

Depending on how you have that button wired in... could be a number of problems so check the wiring:

 The wiring diagram says you need the following on the solenoid: Dark Green and White to the S terminal; Red and Yellow at the I terminal. I don't see two wires at each terminal, but they may be buried in the harness a little, so follow them back a foot or so and try to see them.

The manual states 6V at the coil while in run, but resistance and voltage are not so straightforward so measure the voltage across a test light from the coil + to a good ground. The load of the light will make sure the reading is true. If you don't have 6v there may be a solenoid problem according to the manual.

Verify you're getting voltage at either the I terminal or the coil + while trying to crank.

On the two-prong connector at the ignition module:
Make sure that the red wire to the Ignition module gets power while at crank and run.
Make sure the white wire at the ignition module is getting power during crank.
Both the ignition module and the computer need to see the start signal, so if that wire does not have power, starting will be difficult

On the four-prong connecter at the ignition module, make sure the black wire is grounding well.

Make sure no other wires go to the coil but the dark green and yellow. Any other wires may be shorting it out, replace the condenser on the + side of the coil.

Your coil should read between 1 and 1.5 ohms.

Next, try a spare ignition module. They go after 20 or 30 years. Clean the connectors.
NSS#47184

1987 AMC Eagle Sedan -- 1976 Pacer Coupe -- 1968 Pontiac Tempest Custom S -- 1940 Mercury (& a 2002 Jetta Turbodiesel, 5 spd., the Wife's Daily Driver)

Offline 84eaglelmz

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Re: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2013, 05:38:39 PM »
The two wires on each solenoid are not there, because that was the wires that were from the Key switch that started the car, the key switch broke, so It was replaced with the wires to a button switch, I turn the key to on, Then push the button to start. It always started before fine.

Also I by passed the resistor wire, Because the New coil needs a full 12 volts on it Instead of the 6 that the old coil did


There is constant voltage at the coil when the key is in the run position (remember this is not "cranking" the engine, because the button does that). And when I crank the engine over, it stays a constant on. Not flashing, or anything, just a constant 12 volts, On a test light from coil - to battery -.


I tried another ICM and I got the same thing.

Offline BenM

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Re: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2013, 10:49:54 AM »
Did you check all the ICM connectors as described?

What is the resistance across the new coil?

Describe again this extra ground you added. What was its purpose?
NSS#47184

1987 AMC Eagle Sedan -- 1976 Pacer Coupe -- 1968 Pontiac Tempest Custom S -- 1940 Mercury (& a 2002 Jetta Turbodiesel, 5 spd., the Wife's Daily Driver)

Offline 84eaglelmz

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Re: at wits end, Please help. after ignition upgrade, not starting no spark
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2013, 11:14:28 AM »
How do I test resistance across the coil?

No I didnt check the ICM connectors,  The color of the wires are different. And that two prong connector is Cut, to bypass the resistor wire.

The extra ground that Im talking about is so the car cranks over, Because the neutral safety switch doesn't work.

 

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