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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought this '69 Malibu Coupe 350 recently and it ran fine for a while (if a little rich). Eventually the plugs fouled up so I changed all 8 (HEI so 0.045" gap) and now it won't fire up. It has spark and fuel but just turns over without firing. Any suggestions would be welcome.
 

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All you did was change the plugs and now it wont start ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
To be accurate, it wouldn't start before I changed the plugs and I suspected they were fouled. I pulled a couple out and they were quite wet and black so I replaced them all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks. How do I check the timinig when the engine isn't running?
 

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If you did not move the distributor or pull the distributor cap off then timing did not change it should start.

Should start is it.
But you stated the plugs were wet.

If you did not mess with distributor or cap then Pull all the current plugs.
Wire brush them by hand.. just a little brushing will do.
Do not care if they look perfect and new.

I have had fuel soak new plugs and leave an invisible kind of varnish on them and the vehicle would not start.
Pulled plugs , brushed them and stuck them back in and it fired up.

This was a Ford from the 1977 era.

You can check timing by removing the valve cover on the driver side.. Watch the intake valve on #1 cylinder as you rotate the engine , As soon as the valve closes you need to avert your eyesight to the timing marks on the balancer.

Watch as the marks come to the timing tab.. get to about 20-0 degrees BTDC and the rotor bug under the distributor cap should be lined up with a terminal on the cap that has #1 plug wire attached to it.
 

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All you did was change the plugs and now it wont start ?
Mike,
If it ran fine for a while as you say, I doubt that the timing has changed unless you moved the distributor. Did you remove the wires or anything else or just changed the plugs ?

Does it even sound like it wants to start at all ? Try holding it all the way to the floor and cranking it to make sure it isn't flooded especially since you said it was running rich before.
 

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1968 Malibu sport coupe, 489 ci. 590 hp 600 tq, RV T-400 Freakshow 3200 stall, 3.73 12 bolt posi
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Your sure you didn't cross any plug wires?
 

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Thanks. How do I check the timinig when the engine isn't running?
Get the engine to TDC on #1.
Align the timing marks by hand on the balancer and indicator to your base timing setting. (10*-12*)
With the engine in that position pull the distributor cap.
Verify rotor is pointing to #1.
Pull rotor.
Under the advance mechanism is a magnetic pickup.
The pickup has a ring w/8points on it, the distributor shaft has one also.
Align the points together and tighten the housing.
Reassemble the distributor and you should be close for static timing.


Hope that helps.
It has always worked for me on initial fire ups of new engines.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks, I didn't mess with the distributor at all so not sure that the timing would have changed since it was running OK. The engine has a Holley double pumper fitted which may be supplying too much gas if the jetting is oversized.

I'll try being more agressive on the gas peddle when cranking once the battery has recharged today.
 

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1. Mark sure your getting spark first before do I anything else.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Good point, I did put a spark tester in between a plug and lead to check and it did light up so I do believe I'm getting sparks.
 

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Was the car running properly before it quit? If yes then I would look into the carb. I've had a rear flow that sunk on my 3310 holley a couple months ago. Pull the sight plugs and have someone crank the motor and see if you get fuel pouring out of the hole. Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
OK, tried more pumps on the gas pedal before and during cranking, the engine sounded like it was trying to fire but I just ended up with fire in the carb.
 

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1968 Malibu sport coupe, 489 ci. 590 hp 600 tq, RV T-400 Freakshow 3200 stall, 3.73 12 bolt posi
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Try pulling a plug or 2, 1 at a time and see if they fouled, if they did do the wire brush thing that someone had mentioned earlier, like Dean said probably flooded
 

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OK, tried more pumps on the gas pedal before and during cranking,.
Mike,
Hold it all the way to the floor. No pumping, just wide open throttle. If it is flooded this will help clear it out. You might have to crank it for 20 seconds or more, just be ready to let off the gas when it does start.
 

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If your distributor is put in right and your getting fire out of the carburetor I would turn your distributor clockwise a bit and see if that helps. If it seems like it's helping but still not starting move it a bit more and hopefully it will light up. Setup your timing light and check your timing at idle speed and with the vacuum hose removed at the canister and plugged.
 

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Mike,
Hold it all the way to the floor. No pumping, just wide open throttle. If it is flooded this will help clear it out. You might have to crank it for 20 seconds or more, just be ready to let off the gas when it does start.
yes... pumping the pedal WILL cause flooding... You just want 1 or 2 pumps initially, then HOLD the pedal to the floor and crank. If it doesn't fire up, then do NOT pump the pedal anymore... Once it starts, IMMEDIATELY release the peddle to avoid over revving the engine...


Since you have fire out the carb, therefore you have spark... Could just be flooding if you are pumping too much, and/or it could be initial timing...

IMO, I would try some starting fluid/Ether. This usually works for me if there is trouble with the initial starting...
 
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