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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1969 El Camino 350 with Edelbrock 4b carb, i was recently driving home from work when suddenly the car shut down. After pulling over, I attempted to restart the car but it wont fire. I had recently installed a new distributer and fuel filter, so Im guessing (HOPING) its not that. Im thinking its either the battery taking its final dump (I havent replaced it in quite awhile and there is corrosion on the contectors, car has been sitting for a couple of years due to being in the military) or alternator is dead. When i do attempt to start engine, I can smell rich gas. Any suggestions on what i should do?
 

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Ya i would definitely check the alternator. Since it died while you were driving, gives me the indication that it's the alternator not charging the battery. If you have access to a VAT tester you can do it or just go down to your local auto shop and tell them you want Charging System Test and also check the battery!

Kyle
 

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Did the car just shut off while you were driving or did it kindof sputter and then shut off? The reason I ask is because it could be the module inside the distributor if its an HEI distributor.
 

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The alternator has nothing at all to do with the engine starting. :noway:
Either the starter cranks it over fast enough to fire off or it doesn't.
In fact, you can start the engine without an alternator on it.

Now of course, everyone knows if the alternator stops charging, the battery voltage gets low, in which case the engine doesn't crank over as fast.

Most people can tell if the battery voltage is low, just by listening.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Update: finally had time to begin work on my car today. i checked to see if the engine would still turnover, now it tries to turn but stops and after the 2-3 time engine wont turn at all. dead battery? what do you all think, will be spending all day today and tmrw working on her.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
just put in a new battery, was needed anyways, and installed a new ignition control module. still same symptoms. engine turns but doesnt fire. furl filter is new, and the fuel pump is good.????? any thoughts
 

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Getting spark? Take off a plug wire and ground it against the block w/a screwdriver. Getting gas? Jog the throttle and look in the bores with a flash light. Plugs fouled? Dry them off or better yet get some new ones. Loose wire somewhere in the ignition circuit? You said you just replaced the dist..
 

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Getting spark? Take off a plug wire and ground it against the block w/a screwdriver. Getting gas? Jog the throttle and look in the bores with a flash light. Plugs fouled? Dry them off or better yet get some new ones. Loose wire somewhere in the ignition circuit? You said you just replaced the dist..
Tip here.......... DON'T look down the bores when cranking.
 

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check for spark. if no spark, check for gas. proceed from there
 

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Discussion Starter #10
oko, update 2. no spark at the spark plugs, replaced spark plugs and still nothing. she's getting fuel. so im guessing something in the distributer, which sucks because just put a new one in about 5 months ago or so. ill keep on narrowing it down, any thoughts?
 

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What is your voltage going in to the distributor? Are you getting a full 12 volts?
 

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Vance, pull the distributor cap and crank it over and see if the rotor is turning. Sounds like it could be a broken gear on the distributor.
 

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What about the coil? You can do the same thing with the coil wire. Just remove the coil wire boot from the center of the distributor cap, and hold close to a good ground, and while someone cranks the engine over, look for a spark. It should be a steady spark, and not one that's intermittent. If there's no spark, it's either the coil wire, or the coil itself that needs to be replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The distributer is turning, also just noticed the radio doesnt come on when i turn the key to the on position? ill be checking to see if the coil is good and if there is voltage getting to the distributer. any thoughts?
 

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The distributer is turning, also just noticed the radio doesnt come on when i turn the key to the on position? ill be checking to see if the coil is good and if there is voltage getting to the distributer. any thoughts?
The distributor gets the spark from the coil, so that's why I've focused on the coil. If the engine is turning over fine when you turn the key, then the battery is fine and is supplying current to the electrical system. let us know what you find with the coil, and if the spark looks to be intermitent rather than staedy from the coil wire, then pull the boot off at the coil itself, and look with a flashlight at the coil socket (if it's female) or at the male coil connector itself to see if it looks rusted/corroded at all. If it does, you can take a piece of fine sandpaper to it to clean it up, and try starting the car again.
 

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You might try putting a jumper in place between the Bat terminal on the HEI and the positive battery terminal. If it starts then, you will be looking for a bad ignition switch or some wiring problem. ( A am assuming you have HEI, as you mentioned replacing the module.)
 

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sounds like the same problem I had once. Ended up being the wiring harness bulkhead on the firewall. ( assuming you have one on the 69), pull the wiring harness on the firewall and make sure the spade connectors aren't rusty or corroded. That was my issue and the coil wasn't getting any juice.
 
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