Starting issue(thinking distributor) PICS*

Electrical & Ignition

  1. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    1964 Chrysler 300k with 413 PO installed a newer distributor with electric ignition. Run fine for a bit then all of a sudden I cant get it to start. Got a new battery, sounds like the starter is working properly(also tried the tapping on it trick, did not work), I can see fuel entering the carb when I move the throttle arm, went to check the distributor and one of the wires was really loose connected to the cap and I pulled it and it looked burnt to heck. Here pics. I'm assuming this isn't normal and needs to be replaced?? In the pics I have two wires pulled and side by side for comparison.

    20191209_114034.jpg

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  2. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Make sure the upper shaft is not bent, or the reluctor is missing a vane or probably the wire was just loose.
     
  3. Snotty

    Snotty Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    That's not right, but it wouldn't cause the motor to not run. It would cause it to miss.

    How is your ballast resistor?
     
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  4. Yeahrightgreer

    Yeahrightgreer Senior Member

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    Need more clarity.

    Is the motor failing to start while warm?

    Or is it shutting off while it’s running? And won’t restart?
     
  5. 1970FuryConv

    1970FuryConv Senior Member

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    Distributor
    1. Replace cap rotor and wires. Pull spark plugs and clean them on wire wheel or with sand paper. If worn out, replace them too.
    2. Put a timing light on each spark plug wire to see if it is firing. Should have steady rapid spark at each wire.
     
  6. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    Also, when you did the electronic ignition conversion, did you replace the voltage regulator with an electronic unit? A mechanical regulator will fry the electronic ignition module in short order.

    Dave
     
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  7. stubs300

    stubs300 Senior Member

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    What he said in that comment up there (1).jpg
    Read, study, learn! Good Luck
    Early Charging System modified for use with a 70 style VR
    There are a number of reasons one might want to upgrade a per-1970 system to a transistorized voltage regulator. The list of reason include
    Chrysler recommends you switch to a transistorized VR if you upgrade to an electronic ignition from a points style ignition.
    If you have to buy a new voltage regulator, the difference in cost is only about $5-10 more for the transistorized unit. Not to mention, the quality of replacement early style VR's is spotty.
    The transistorized VR will have a longer life.
    Below is a diagram describing how to install a 70 and later Voltage Regulator on a sixties mopar.
    charging system overview
     
  8. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Stock electronic ignition or aftermarket?
     
  9. Snotty

    Snotty Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    That would show that there were voltage through the wire. Not so sure it would prove that the plug were firing. I have had voltage through a wire without a plug firing a few times.
     
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  10. 1970FuryConv

    1970FuryConv Senior Member

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    Agree: the 8 insulators could be cracked with charge going to ground. However, if he followed my suggestion in step 1 of my 1st post to clean, inspect, and replace spark plugs if needed, I doubt this would be the case for all 8 plugs. If he saw strong spark at all 8 wires on cranking, I don't think his ignition is his problem.
    My guess is that there will be no spark and he will have to undo a mistake by the previous owner in installing the electronic ignition.
    We'll have to wait on the OP.
     
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  11. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    Thanks for all the replies guys, super helpful and sorry for the late response. This weekend I plan on doing what 1970FuryConv suggested. And to answer the other questions it is an aftermarket electric ignition. To Stubs i believe its the older style voltage regulator(attached is a picture of the current voltage reg i have installed).

    voltage reg.jpg
     
  12. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    And a little more on the backstory, the car was running/starting fine outside of a bad battery that I had to keep jumping off and a starter that stuck once before(hammer tapping it worked that time, plan on replacing with newer mini starter). Now with a new fresh battery when I try to start it all I hear is the starter spinning but it never catching and in turn the motor doesnt start.

    However, I did jiggle the distributor cap once and then it fired right up, but after about 3 minutes of idling just cut completely off(didnt choke down and die) just cut straight off with no stumbling or warning. Then no start again, just spinning starter.

    Again, I REALLY appreciate all the help.
     
  13. halifaxhops

    halifaxhops Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    almost sounds like a loose connection or a pick up coil going out.
    crystal-ball-fortune-teller.jpg
     
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  14. Big_John

    Big_John Illegitimi non carborundum FCBO Gold Member

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    OK, just so we are all on the same page... Does the starter just spin? Or does the engine turn over? I'm assuming that the engine is turning over, but it's not firing.

    It's really time to do some very basic diagnostics before you start aiming the parts cannon at it.

    First, you need to look to see if there's spark. Real simple, pull a convenient plug wire at the spark plug, stick an old phillips screwdriver in the end of the plug wire and hold it about 1/4" away from any decent ground on the engine. Try starting it and see if you have a strong blue spark. That will tell you if the ignition is working.

    If you have a good strong spark, put everything back together (don't change any parts just yet) and squirt some starting fluid down the carb and try to start it. Does it fire? Burp, fart etc.? If it fires up for even a second, that says the problem is in fuel delivery (pump, filter, carb etc.)

    Once you do those two very, very basic diagnostic tests, then we can start actually finding your problem and not just throwing parts at it, hoping to find the problem.

    EDIT: Added to spark procedure /result
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2019
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  15. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    Ok Big_john I'll try those test asap. Again, really appreciate the help.
     
  16. stubs300

    stubs300 Senior Member

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    That's the problem right there! I don't care what others say about the guts in those being newer/upgraded style regulators, they suck with electric ignig. You need the flat kind like in the diagram I posted if you don't want to have problems. People will say otherwise but they're wrong on that style of regulator, then they wonder why they have issues. Do what Big John said and report back. Good Luck
     
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  17. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    Btw can anyone tell what distributor I have, based off the pic of the tan cap? There is no logo on it and doesn't seem factory to me
     
  18. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    Btw here the car, just a little eye candy.

    20191116_143445.jpg
     
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  19. Davea Lux

    Davea Lux Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    That looks like a mechanical regulator to me, the electronic ones made in that style do not have the resistance bars underneath. This unit is not compatible with electronic ignition. The mechanical points opening and closing create static and the static shorts out the electronic components in the updated ignition system. Your distributor looks like a Mopar aftermarket replacement unit. If you remove the distributor there will usually be a distributor number stamped on the case of the unit.

    Dave
     
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  20. Drew-Pritchett

    Drew-Pritchett Member

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    Ok, so I pulled the front passenger side sparkplug and held it to a ground, had wife try and crank the car, I saw NO spark what so ever. Tried this multiple times on 3 different grounded areas(pics will be how I did it).

    So i dont seem to be getting spark, so i used a multimeter and with the ignition on my battery shows 12.5 volts and the positive side of my coil reads 3.6 volts. Does that sound normal? Also the two points on my ballast resistor showed 3.8 volts on one terminal and 10.8 volts on the other(all while ignition on).

    Thoughts? Again thank you all so much.

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