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daverosscohen
02-19-2014, 11:57 AM
Hey there,

Been driving my "new" tr6 for a few weeks here and there on weekends etc in between repair projects. For all of the car's shortcomings, it has always started up really easily. Maybe it idles a little high, but it's always driven pretty well. until...

I simply replaced the heater valve. Went to fire it up... Cranking nicely, just not firing up. I thought maybe I flooded it. So i left it for a bit... tried it again.. nothing. Gave up last night, came back this morning, and still nothing... Turning over nicely, just no start.

So... obviously its spark or fuel problem. My question is... is there a broad "troubleshooting" process you all go through when something like this happens.. How do you check for spark? Where do I check if fuel is making it where it needs to be? What are the obvious things to make sure are good when for no obvious reason, the car doesnt start?

Thanks
dave

Bruce100
02-19-2014, 12:27 PM
The heater valve isn't near anything I can think of that would stop it from starting like that. Does it even try?


Check for spark -
1. First check to see if you may have knocked a low voltage wire off the coil. Should be one on either side
2. verify your coil to distributor wire is connected

3. Pull a spark plug wire off at the plug side and with a glove or other insulation, hold the metal clip close to ground, try to start the car. You should see the spark.

poolboy
02-19-2014, 03:51 PM
A 74..

Try this and if the engine starts we can probably tell you how to fix it.
Take a long wire (about the diameter of the wires you see connected to the fuse box) that will reach from the positive battery terminal to the positive terminal of the coil.
With an inch or so of exposed wire on each end, connect one end to the coil and the other end to the battery.
To avoid sparking..connect the coil side first, then the battery.
Engage the starter and the choke but do not play around with the accelerator pedal.
If it starts, kill it and remove that jumper wire and let us know.

DNK
02-19-2014, 06:13 PM
Gee , wonder where ken is heading?

dklawson
02-19-2014, 06:28 PM
With an inch or so of exposed wire on each end, connect one end to the coil and the other end to the battery. Engage the starter and the choke but do not play around with the accelerator pedal. If it starts, kill it and remove that jumper wire and let us know.

Footnotes before making this test: The jumper wire will be connected to coil (+), not the side of the coil connected to the distributor. To kill the engine with the coil wired directly to the battery means that you will have to remove the jumper wire to stop the engine. It won't stop with the key. Also, the wire is likely to spark whichever end of the wire is connected last. My preference would be to make that last connection away from the battery, at the coil. I don't like sparks near batteries. If you connect/disconnect at the coil last, make sure you never let the disconnected jumper wire touch ground until you remove the other end from the battery.

Another quick screening test is to spray the air filters with a liberal shot of starter fluid, then try to start the engine. If the engine fires, runs very briefly, then dies, you have a fuel delivery problem.

daverosscohen
02-21-2014, 10:20 PM
UPDATE:

Thanks for everyone's help thus far. I opened the distributor cap and the rotor fell apart in my hand. Perfect! So I got a new rotor, points, and condenser.

Installed all these, set the points... and VOILA... car started and Idled beautifully for about 60 seconds, until it sputtered and died slowly (over about 30 seconds). Car cranks over fine, just doesnt start. But, not like the first time. It sound like it's "trying" this time, just not quite getting there.
I bought the in-line ignition tester (that lights up when spark occurs). It flashes as i try to start... but stops as soon as the key moves off the "start" position.

I havent tried the method suggested above.. but it seems like Poolboy is on to what is happening here. What is it you were getting at ;)

Thanks again everyone

-dave

daverosscohen
02-21-2014, 10:46 PM
** I also made sure there was fuel making it to the carbs... there was

Gliderman8
02-21-2014, 11:33 PM
As long as you're not cranking or the engine is not running you won't get spark. Go back and check points gap to make sure nothing is loose and have a look at the cap to make sure it is OK.

toysrrus
02-22-2014, 03:53 AM
Hey Elliot,

You say you live in Central PA. Where abouts in Central PA? I have a friend in "Wyomissing, PA" that has a sweet '70 or '71 Primrose TR6. His name is "Harlan (Scotty) Boyer". I bought my TR3 from him & he also has a `71 E-Type Coupe 2+2. Do you know him?

Russ

Gliderman8
02-22-2014, 07:55 AM
Hi Russ. I live in Lancaster; about 35 miles from Wyomissing. Don't know your friend.

dklawson
02-22-2014, 08:39 PM
I havent tried the method suggested above.. but it seems like Poolboy is on to what is happening here. What is it you were getting at ;)


On cars with ballast ignitions there are two wires on coil (+). One is either a pink(ish) resistor wire or a wire inline with a ballast resistor. The other wire is white/yellow and its other end is attached to the starter solenoid. The pinkish wire from the ignition switch provides reduced voltage to the coil during normal running. The white/yellow wire bypasses the ballast resistance when cranking to make the engine easier to start. If the engine fires when cranking but dies when you release the key, it can be an indication that the ballast resistor (or resistor wire as fitted) has failed... or there is a problem with the ignition switch.

If you have a voltmeter you can check this other ways. With the key in the run position you should find voltage between coil (+) and ground. If you don't find voltage on coil (+), there is either a problem with the ballast resistance or the ignition switch.

daverosscohen
02-23-2014, 01:44 PM
UPDATE:

It would appear that the original broken rotor broke the spring loaded graphite shaft on the top of the distributor cap. It also gouged the contacts as well. So that was the problem

I got a new distributor cap, rechecked the points once again and it fired up great.


Its now idling fine (little bit of misfiring i think). Let it warm up and took it aroudn the block. and it's definitely misfiring and sputtering at low rpm, as i accelerate in 1st and 2nd gear, but as soon as it gets above 2500 rpm or so it runs really smoothly. When sitting on driveway, it misfires when I rev it quickly


I'm thinking maybe one of 2 things or both that is causing the misfires etc.
1. The vacuum retard attached to the distributor feels loose, and I can't find how to tighten it, so that might cause a problem with it's spring tension... but i know it activates around 2500rpm
2. The coil. Not sure of it's age... thinking this might be the problem?


Curious your thoughts?


-dave

poolboy
02-23-2014, 02:39 PM
The Vaccum retard actually DEactivates above 1100 rpms. The disc housing the retard's diaphragm is able to wobble a bit, but it should not be able to move in and out of the distributor housing.

Bruce100
02-24-2014, 02:26 PM
So why did everything shatter in the first place? It may be that your distributor end float is too large, and the rotor "lifts" up into the distributor cap, destroying stuff. I think it was .005. Mine did this, see the arc gouged in across the top?

https://72triumphtr6.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/wp_000887.jpg