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Old 05-07-2013, 08:23 PM   #1
Invader Sandstone
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Default This problem is draining me. Please help.

I'm at the end of my rope. Please help me. I may have a nice car but I don't have unlimited funds and this issue is crashing me emotionally and financially.

I'm giving you all the info so you can make some suggestions. The end is where it really gets odd.

I bought my car a few months ago. It starts fine cold (manual choke) but not at all when the engine gets hot. If it sits for 2 minutes no problem but the "sweet spot" is 10-15 minutes. That time would not let it start unless I held the pedal to the floor. (Not anymore but read on).

I've since gotten the timing perfect and tuned the carb to perfection. The problem seemed a little less but not perfect. I moved the fuel line away from the carb more. No help.

Recently I got a insulator gasket for the carb (edelbrock 1405. 600cfm) but that only seemed to help slightly, but that could have been in my head.

My distributor that came with the car didnt have a tach drive key so my tach didnt work. My mechanic picked one up for me (new) at Carlsisle a few weeks back and installed it. Tach works and life goes on. Friday I changed my jet on my carb because my Wideband gauge said I was running a little rich at cruising speed. I also charged my AC system up for the first time and now it blows cold.

NOW.

Sunday I went into autozone to get some small things and when I came out the car wouldn't start at all. It would crank and crank and crank. After 15-30 of waiting still no success. My friend had me spray ether into the carb and it did start but I really feel it was more the wait, or luck that started it.

Monday, I went to the store and as I say using with the AC on the car just died. Not stumble and die, just died. It started back up immediately and I drove home.

HERE'S WHERE IT GETS ODD.

Today I wanted to test the car out so I drove it for 25 minutes and then took it home and parked it. I set my alarm for 15 minutes then went outside to check to see if it would start. No luck. It would crank and crank and crank but not start. I let it sit for about an hour and still nothing. The engine wasn't even very hot at this point. I tried the ether trick and still no luck. I wrapped a wire around the #1 pole in the distributor and put the other end near a ground but I didn't see a spark. I took the batter terminal off the distributor and looked under the cap for anything unusual and saw nothing. Then I put the cap back on and took out the #1 plug and set it on the car with the wire still attached so I could see if there was a spark. The second I cranked the engine it fired in less than a second as if there was never a problem to begin with. WTF?!?!?! I out the plug back in and it runs like a champ.

What's going on?! I feel plagued. Cursed and the gods are mocking me. But all joking aside I don't feel this car is reliable to take anywheres hole this problem lurks around. The car never stalled before the new distributor and the hot starting problem is getting worse but it was always there. Why did removing the plug make the car start instantly, or is this coincidence.
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:43 PM   #2
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All that and you didnt say what year the car is, could make a difference. Am I to assume a `74?

It sounds like a flooding issue. But, If it actually is not getting spark, I would look to the coil, or condenser.

You can check the flooding condition by doing your warm up test and then starting the car by holding the pedal to the floor and crank until it starts. If that clears the flood, you have a flooding issue, but, if it does not have a spark, nothing is going to start it.
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:50 PM   #3
Invader Sandstone
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It is a 74

The pedal to the floor used to work but it doesn't anymore.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:14 PM   #4
calwldlife
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first part of your story had me thinking float in carb.
last part says ignition.

so, maybe weak spark made the full throttle cranking
necessary.

then finally, no spark.

so, coil.
edit
wiring to the coil

Last edited by calwldlife; 05-07-2013 at 09:17 PM.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:15 PM   #5
Invader Sandstone
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I want to believe but this distributor is less than three weeks old and he problem was present with the old distributor although not as bad.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Invader Sandstone View Post
I want to believe but this distributor is less than three weeks old and he problem was present with the old distributor although not as bad.
you can believe what you want to.
testing the ignition is the step you should pursue.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:23 PM   #7
Invader Sandstone
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As someone who is new to working on cars can you give me some pointers to checking my ignition?
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:37 PM   #8
calwldlife
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You say new dist.
after market?
coil in cap?
run full 12volts?

so, both dist had a problem?
so, the only thing in common, wire to feed the coil.
did you use the same coil?


there are many how to's about checking coils and pick ups.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:42 PM   #9
Invader Sandstone
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Aftermarket distributor although I don't see the name on the cap. No idea what or where the coil is or would be located. That's new to me. But I'm willing to learn. As for the 12V, will the wire on the battery terminal always have 12 when the key is turned on?
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:47 PM   #10
calwldlife
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which one?
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:56 PM   #11
Invader Sandstone
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Looks pretty much like the bottom one just with a tach drive key
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:08 PM   #12
calwldlife
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bulge at the top is coil cover.
coil is in cap.
needs full 12v

geez, I want o help but you are not answering the questions.
I guess someone told you the dist was bad and you had it changed.

they need to follow up.

could be the 12v wire or ignition key cylinder.
can you run a wire from the pos terminal on the alt to the dist?

make it a clip on so when it acts up you can connect it and see if the car runs.

edit, DO NOT MAKE IT A PERMINATE CONNECTION.
this is only to test the wire that feeds the coil.
when hooked up, you have to unhook it to stop engine.

Last edited by calwldlife; 05-07-2013 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:09 PM   #13
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I had almost the same problem with my 75. Turns out that the capasitor mounted on top of the wiper motor right behind the dist has a wire that was intermitently shorting out against the motor housing. The repair was to put shrink tube over the wire. I could have just changed the capasitor but it worked ok and havent had the problem since
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:09 PM   #14
augiedoggy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Invader Sandstone View Post
Looks pretty much like the bottom one just with a tach drive key
Yup its a $50 eBay special.... I have the same one and they sometimes have quality issues.... I would be a bit Leary of it until you confirm you have spark when its failing.... it sounds to me like the ignition. Module chip with the 4 spade connectors could be flaking out.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:12 PM   #15
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You don't specify if the car has had an HEI distributor conversion.
If you pull the distributor cap does it have points and a condenser and a separate coil?
It sounds to me you have two things going on at once.
Check that you have a full 12V to your Coil/Distributor. a bad wire with high resistance can drop the voltage and cause a weak spark. This could be the source of the dying and contribute to the hot start problem.

Check and set your float level per the instructions for the Edelbrock 600. Also check the float needle and seat for contamination or damage. This could be the source of the hot start issue.

Other than that call a cleric to chase the demons out!!!!
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:13 PM   #16
augiedoggy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Invader Sandstone View Post
Looks pretty much like the bottom one just with a tach drive key
Yup its a $50 eBay special.... I have the same one and they sometimes have quality issues.... I would be a bit Leary of it until you confirm you have spark when its failing.... it sounds to me like the ignition Module chip with the 4 spade connectors could be flaking out. And this distributor should have a new thicker gauge wire run from the ignition from everything I read the old wire for the points does not have enough amps.you could be over heating the module as a result..and this distributor doesn't use the resistor mounted on the firewall either...

Last edited by augiedoggy; 05-07-2013 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:25 PM   #17
Invader Sandstone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calwldlife View Post
bulge at the top is coil cover.
coil is in cap.
needs full 12v

geez, I want o help but you are not answering the questions.
I guess someone told you the dist was bad and you had it changed.

they need to follow up.

could be the 12v wire or ignition key cylinder.
can you run a wire from the pos terminal on the alt to the dist?

make it a clip on so when it acts up you can connect it and see if the car runs.

edit, DO NOT MAKE IT A PERMINATE CONNECTION.
this is only to test the wire that feeds the coil.
when hooked up, you have to unhook it to stop engine.
Sorry if I'm not answering the questions the way you want. I really appreciate the help and I'm trying to provide as much information as possible.

The old distributor wasn't bad, it just didn't have a tach drive key.

As for the temp wire to distributor, that's a brilliant idea and ill try to recreate the problem tomorrow and test it this way.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:27 PM   #18
Invader Sandstone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by augiedoggy View Post
Yup its a $50 eBay special.... I have the same one and they sometimes have quality issues.... I would be a bit Leary of it until you confirm you have spark when its failing.... it sounds to me like the ignition Module chip with the 4 spade connectors could be flaking out. And this distributor should have a new thicker gauge wire run from the ignition from everything I read the old wire for the points does not have enough amps.you could be over heating the module as a result..and this distributor doesn't use the resistor mounted on the firewall either...
Excellent information. Not sure about resistors or whatnot. Lol. Ill do a lot of reading tomorrow.
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:29 PM   #19
calwldlife
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Invader Sandstone View Post
Sorry if I'm not answering the questions the way you want. I really appreciate the help and I'm trying to provide as much information as possible.

The old distributor wasn't bad, it just didn't have a tach drive key.

As for the temp wire to distributor, that's a brilliant idea and ill try to recreate the problem tomorrow and test it this way.
so it was a in cap coil style?
the issue, external coils take 9volts.
if the car was original 9volts wire and noone ran a full 12volt wire,
you get those problems.

you can test the pos wire to the coil for volts.

you are not the orig owner so, you need to test,
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:29 PM   #20
Invader Sandstone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by texasbaehr View Post
You don't specify if the car has had an HEI distributor conversion.
If you pull the distributor cap does it have points and a condenser and a separate coil?
It sounds to me you have two things going on at once.
Check that you have a full 12V to your Coil/Distributor. a bad wire with high resistance can drop the voltage and cause a weak spark. This could be the source of the dying and contribute to the hot start problem.

Check and set your float level per the instructions for the Edelbrock 600. Also check the float needle and seat for contamination or damage. This could be the source of the hot start issue.

Other than that call a cleric to chase the demons out!!!!

Hopefully I won't need to call in the Exorcist.

I did check the float level. It is a HEI distributor. Ill confirm if it has full 12v tomorrow when I attempt to recreate the problem. Ill definitely post the results here.
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