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  #1  
Old Jan 4th, 12, 9:50 PM
1972 El Camino 1972 El Camino is offline
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Default Car randomly dies

I'm sure some you guys have been reading my progress with working on my car and I want to thank you for all the help.
As well, I hope I'm not wearing out my welcome with all the questions/threads.

today my car just started dieing on me and won't start for another 10mins or so. When it does it's very rough. I smell gas so I'm not concerned with it not getting enough fuel. It actually backfired on a couple start ups with this new problem, started rough and backfired. Then it runs and idles fine for a couple minutes then runs rough and dies. I tried once it would start again to hold my foot to 1200rpms or so and just let it run and then after a couple minutes it just dies?

Is this a condenser issue? Coil issue? Fouled plugs?
I did notice right before it started on my way back from a ride the coil was hot.

Any help on this is appreciated as the car doesn't run now.

Mark
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  #2  
Old Jan 4th, 12, 9:58 PM
Dean Dean is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Sounds more like a carburetor or vacuum leak issue to me.
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  #3  
Old Jan 4th, 12, 10:27 PM
Philip Philip is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Is the choke opening?
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  #4  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 11:15 AM
Robinls5 Robinls5 is online now
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Sounds like the Carb. is loading up with fuel? After the Carb. is working and the problem continues, I would check the Coil.
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  #5  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 12:40 PM
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Thumbs up Re: Car randomly dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1972 El Camino View Post
It actually backfired on a couple start ups with this new problem, started rough and backfired, the car doesn't run now...


If you're using an HEI distributor, did you run/use a solid 12v connecting 12-14 gauge wire from the ignition source [fuse block, that says ign.] instead of the stock resistance wire to the distributor.

http://www.chevelles.com/techref/ftecref5.html

I've seen engines backfire on start-ups & not start at all, when using the stock resistance wire, instead of the proper 12-14 gauge wire for HEI's ...

1.) Do you have +12 volts at the HEI distributor ???
2.) Are the connectors for the wires, firmly plugged into the terminals on the distributor cap ????
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  #6  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 12:48 PM
1972 El Camino 1972 El Camino is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

i checked all the wires connections on my stock points dist cap.
points look fine. (what happens when a condenser goes bad?)
i checked voltage of the coil and it has has voltage. (pulled the short wire to the dist and hooked a meter to it, puts out voltage when cranking.)
the car wants to start fires up for a second or two then wont run, dies.
choke opened or closed makes no difference.

i pulled the #2 plug and its wet with gas.

puzzled that it was running fine all of a sudden has this issue.
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  #7  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 12:56 PM
cooperhw cooperhw is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Probably not this but once when I was 18 (Long Long time ago) I bought a 67 SS for $500 because the guy threw up his hands in frustation when he had a similar thing happening to his Chevelle. I rushed (ran) home, got the cash, and my dad in his truck to pull the car home. Got to looking around and noticed a second wire on the coil so I took it off. It went to the factory installed tach that was shorting out at a certain rpm and would continue to short out until it slobbered all over itself and finally died. Anyhow, took the wire to the coil off and about an hour later that 396/4 speed was screaming.
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  #8  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:33 PM
1972 El Camino 1972 El Camino is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by cooperhw View Post
Probably not this but once when I was 18 (Long Long time ago) I bought a 67 SS for $500 because the guy threw up his hands in frustation when he had a similar thing happening to his Chevelle. I rushed (ran) home, got the cash, and my dad in his truck to pull the car home. Got to looking around and noticed a second wire on the coil so I took it off. It went to the factory installed tach that was shorting out at a certain rpm and would continue to short out until it slobbered all over itself and finally died. Anyhow, took the wire to the coil off and about an hour later that 396/4 speed was screaming.
like this? on the battery side of the coil? i only have the one wire going to the dist on the other side.

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  #9  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:38 PM
ss3964spd ss3964spd is online now
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Mark,

Turn the key to the "Run" position (not "Start") and then check the voltage at the coil with a multimeter from the + side of the coil to a good ground point - like one of the rear carb to manifold bolts.

You should have 9-ish volts.

Get everything set up for the test before you turn the key to Run, then take the measurement. Leaving the key in Run for too long can cook the points.

Dan
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  #10  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:41 PM
1972 El Camino 1972 El Camino is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Dan, i get 12 volts from the +/battery side of the coil.

i pulled the short wire from the coil off the cap, connected a multimeter to it and cranked the motor i got 12 volts as well.

condenser?
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  #11  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:49 PM
Philip Philip is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

First I would remove all that tape and see what is under there. usually what is found are some bad connections. Most times there will be wires just twisted together. There should be a resistor wire from the fuse block and a yellow wire from the starter solenoid R terminal to the battery side of the coil. There should be 12v while cranking and about 9v when the engine is running on the battery terminal at the coil. The - terminal is the ground through the point contacts. If you are in doubt about the capacitors being good, disconnect them, if the problem goes away then replace them.

I have had 2 of those red coils go bad and 2 yellow ones. After making sure the wiring is good, check for spark, It needs to be blue not yellow or orange. Once you are getting good spark and you are sure the carburetor is not flooding replace the spark plugs. If they get saturated with fuel the porcelain insulator can become conductive allowing the spark to arc up inside the plug and not fire properly.
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  #12  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:55 PM
ss3964spd ss3964spd is online now
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

You get 12V when the key is in the Run position? You shouldn't.

With a points ignition system you should have around 9V at the + (Batt) side of the coil when the key is in the Run position. A constant 12V through the points will kill them pretty quickly - that's why the voltage is reduced to 9 when the engine is running - the points can handle 9 for extended periods.

When the key is turned to the START (cranking) position the points do get 12V to help with starting, then the key goes to Run and the points get only 9. If you have 12 in Run - that's a problem and could explain why it won't start now - the points may be fried.

Dan
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  #13  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 1:58 PM
Philip Philip is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

see the braid covering on the wire circled in the photo, that indicates the resistor wire. It is a heat shield to protect the other wires in the loom. With the points closed it should have less than battery voltage at the + terminal of the coil, usually around 9v. The other wire should have battery voltage while cranking the starter.

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  #14  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 2:17 PM
1972 El Camino 1972 El Camino is offline
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

Quote:
Originally Posted by ss3964spd View Post
You get 12V when the key is in the Run position? You shouldn't.

With a points ignition system you should have around 9V at the + (Batt) side of the coil when the key is in the Run position. A constant 12V through the points will kill them pretty quickly - that's why the voltage is reduced to 9 when the engine is running - the points can handle 9 for extended periods.

When the key is turned to the START (cranking) position the points do get 12V to help with starting, then the key goes to Run and the points get only 9. If you have 12 in Run - that's a problem and could explain why it won't start now - the points may be fried.

Dan
the points look fine to me.not burned or anything, look new. what does the condenser do?
if i'm getting 12 does that mean its possible my coil is bad?
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  #15  
Old Jan 5th, 12, 2:33 PM
ss3964spd ss3964spd is online now
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Default Re: Car randomly dies

The condenser absorbs voltage spikes associated with the points opening and closing.
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