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Thread: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

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  1. #21
    Luke Skywalker
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Yup.
    Cheers,
    D.
    "If it's got t*ts or tyres, you've got problems"
    www.englishmotorsatfairbrook.org
    TVR Car Club North America Southwest Regional Organiser

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    February 1, 2020


    Today I set out to get this thing running. I have spark, I have popping sounds, it should run. must be something going on with the carb...


    So I thought.


    First thing I did, Reset the points gap properly this time. as per Jeff Schlemmer's rec to 17 thou.


    Went over to the car. put some fuel in the carb and same, just popping. Not the carb it has fuel and air it should run. it has to be timing or not sparking at the right time.


    Something dawned on me, and I decided to check the timing. Pulled up a youtube video from University motors and started watching John Twist talking about setting stating timing. After a few minutes in, where he turned the engine over and lined up the marks, I saw the static timing being set, I decided to check the car. I turned the engine over, lined the marks up to the middle of the markings, and checked the distributor. the rotor was pointing at the rear cylinder, #4!


    I figured ok, The engine is 180 out. so I went ahead and just swapped the wires around. I swapped 1 and 4, and 2 and 3.


    Put some gas in the carb and she sputtered. not popped, but sputtered and almost caught.


    Success! More life is to be had!


    I put some more fuel in the carb, and gave it some cranking, she sputtered, she stumbled, she roared! Fired up and ran amazingly well for a few seconds until the fuel was used up.


    She is Alive!!!!!!


    Added more fuel and she fired up pretty quickly. a little stumbling, but hey it hasn't run in 20 years so I figured I can live with that.


    Double checked coolant and oil was good as far as levels go. Figured maybe I can just run it off the tank.


    Pulled the hose off the tank shined a flashlight inside and it looked good. figured I'll throw a gallon of fuel in the tank, connect the fuel pump and see if it runs on its own.


    Turned key, fuel pump is clicking loudly but it runs, then it started to click slower. fuel pressure building. checked at front of car and fuel coming from the fuel filter, from the line just before the filter. it is nice and clean. trimmed the hose and reclamped it, fuel now coming out of the filter. I'll change it later. for now I just want to plumb it to the carb and see if it will run.


    The carb, a weber DGV, is on and I cant access the linkage well and I cannot connect the fuel line. its too short. Solution, Turn the carb around. this way I can connect the fuel line and see if I can connect the accelerator cable.


    Turned the carb around, connected fuel line, made up a simple bracket to hold the old SU bracket that was still attached to the cable, and secured it to the carb.


    Turned the key, crank crank crank, crank crank crank, still cranking. Tried a few more times. And she roared to life. Let her idle a bit and she stayed idling. Revved it up one she warmed up and she sounds so nice, really smooth and came up to temp nicely. Revs good a little hesitation from idle when accelerating, but it runs amazingly well.


    Dash gauges weren't working, turned key a few times they work, but not well, going off. needs the wiring connections cleaned up thats for sure. went to fuse panel and turned fuses back and forth a bunch. seems to have helped. so cleaning will be needed on all connections. that will be the next project.


    Tested all the car functions. It has brake lights, headlights, hazards, wipers turn on, heater turns on, and gauges for now. Turn signals don't work, parking lights don't work, and red lights and blue light on sash does not work. Flashers for high beam work but high beams wont turn on when switch is pushed in the forward position. Horn also does not work.


    I had to do it, I had to see if it would move in gear. Put in the clutch, put it in gear and it is good. clutch feels ok, and engages fine. forward in 1st and reverse no problem.


    Brakes, not very good it stops but requires a lot of pressure. I will replace the rubber lines and bleed it with new rear wheel cylinders and new pads and shoes and rotors and drums to get that in check.


    I need to wash and clean the engine bottom, I figure once it is running and driving, I will clean it then if need be, do some gaskets.


    I still have a lot of plumbing to fix in the engine - charcoal canister, vent lines, vacuum line to distributor, but all in due time.


    I am so happy that she is Alive! I knew this little B would live again, and it is on the way. She's breathing, and it is beautiful!

  3. #23
    Moderator Mickey Richaud's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Remember the old Toyota ad slogan, "Oh, what a feeling!"? Fits, doesn't it?

    Congratulations! Now bring it to the finish line and enjoy!


    Mickey
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    IT is such a great feeling. I was more surprised at how well it is running. needs some tweaking, but I am amazed still that all it really took was a low tension lead in the dizzy, swapped coil, rearranged plug wires and some fuel and it started up pretty quickly.

    I am hoping to get the firing order swapped back around if possible, but if it has to be in the order it is in, not a big deal. I would prefer the front cylinder to be #1 and not #4, but the dizzy rotor was pointing to # 4 with the timing marks on the crank lined up so it is what it is. it runs thats what counts.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mickey Richaud View Post
    Remember the old Toyota ad slogan, "Oh, what a feeling!"? Fits, doesn't it?

    Congratulations! Now bring it to the finish line and enjoy!


    Mickey

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    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Encouraging news!

    The distributor drive "dog" is offset. Someone has been into that engine (see my post #17 above) and installed the drive gear wrong way 'round...

    With timing mark at TDC and the rotor pointing at #4 in the cap, pull the dizzy out, remove the locking plate and the retaining tube under it, one countersunk screw. With a 2" or 3" ¼-inch fine-thread screw/bolt, pull the drive gear out and rotate it 180° and reinstall. Reassemble the rest with the rotor pointing at the 2-O'clock (#1 terminal) position and put the wires into the cap in the correct firing order. Static time it again and you've got it the way the "book" says it should be.

    IMHO, the dizzy is less important at this point, you know it will run. Concentrate more on the electrical issues now. Replace all "Scotch-Lok" connectors in the wiring (I'm betting there are some after learning of the dizz being 108°out) or whatever botched connections found. Taped single wires are an indication someone has been in there and bodged the harness. With the CRC, disconnect all Lucar connectors, clean and treat 'em with that... one-at-a-time. Check and clean all grounding points, black wires (originally) are grounds. Beware of wiring not originating from someplace in the harness: some folks have been known to run "extra" wires(!) to bypass problems rather than finding/fixing them. Moss and other sources have Lucar connectors available, a soldering pencil and patience are your pals.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    100% i'm with you on this.

    I do plan to re-clock the distributor drive gear later. it runs for now, and I am planning on making up some new plug wires later myself as well just to customize the length for the look I want. I have tons to do, will also be ordering some rubber lines, fuel lines, brake lines and flushing out the brake system and assessing the condition of the components. there.

    I am already reverting the wiring bypasses that have been done. so far I will need to figure out if alternator is working. may just be a wiring issue on my end, but that should be a simple fix. starter relay is working and I undid that bypass. alternator wiring was also bypassed and run to the white/green at ignition switch area so that too has been removed and put back on the main harness with the correct plug for the alternator but I will need to check the brown/yellow there to see if I hooked up one of the looped ends by accident (3 were there).

    I plan to remove all connectors one at a time, CRC, and use a small brush to scrub the insides and put back together. I will do continuity testing to dash switches etc. since flashers on hazards work but turn signals do not, Ive assumed there is a bad flasher relay for the turn signals so I bought one for it and the hazards just to be safe they were cheap enough.

    Also high beam works but not from the switch so I will test the switch as well for continuity and see if it needs to be replaced.

    I plan to live off the Wiring diagram for a bit. before I get into the mechanicals much more, just will depend on my mood when I am looking at it.

    Right now I want to come up with a list of what I need to do and go through my list to check things off to ensure i don't miss something.

  7. #27
    Luke Skywalker
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    You need to fit a new harness. Moss has them on sale now.
    Cheers,
    D.
    "If it's got t*ts or tyres, you've got problems"
    www.englishmotorsatfairbrook.org
    TVR Car Club North America Southwest Regional Organiser

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    While a replacement harness would be a good idea, I do not feel it needs it at this time. Based on my current assessment, The current one just needs TLC and cleaning.

    Only 3 things had bypassed or aftermarket wiring done.

    1. Starter wire from switch to starter solenoid was bypassing the relay I undid it and the starter relay and solenoid work fine from the switch
    2. Alternator had a wire running to the ignition switch area. that too has already been removed I just need to verify my connection on the alternator and make sure it is functioning
    3. fuel pump hot lead from fuse box to fuel pump. This I haven't traced the original wire yet but that should be easy enough.

    The rest of the wiring appears intact so I will work with what I have got. I'm not planning on restoring the car, plus I don't even care if everything works 100% just want a fun car to drive a bit here and there when I am up to it. So it doesn't have to be perfect. Because for me its a project I can tinker with over time to get all working as time and budget permits.

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Update as of February 18th, 2020

    Purolator fuel pump bad - replaced with an inexpensive bravex pump from amazon. Found original fuel pump wire and repaired connection at fuse box and removed last aftermarket wire. Replaced all rubber fuel lines and added a fuel filter in-between tank and pump and another in engine bay. added gas to tank - so far looks ok.

    Fuel level sender is bad - worn out - ordered a new one

    Replaced fusebox with a new one. much better connection and all gauges working as they should.

    High beams work on flash mode but not when trying to have them on all the time - this is not a big deal but I have to look into it. probably the switch.

    Found a set of autumn leaf seats in near perfect condition and a moto-lita steering wheel! super happy with that.

    Installed battery cut off switch

    Adjusted carb a bunch of times and have it doing ok. needs probably a different primary idle jet but so far its doing decent.

    Car starts with literally first key crank. Turn key, crank and vroom its running.

    Runs a bit rough but that could just be worn motor mounts so thats not a big deal but idle feels a bit lumpy so not sure what that is yet but I suspect its all in the tuning of carb and timing. I will continue to play with it.

    Replaced hazard flasher relay and turn signal relay - they work great now.

    Where I have left off, exhaust is cut off right now as I am putting in a glasspack in place of the center resonator/muffler. I want that sporty sound and for under $50 I will have it. i need to put the exhaust back together, but I underestimated what I would need for pipe sizing so... parts are on order to make sure I can get it back together.

    Very happy with how its coming along - all electronics in decent shape. I will need to address the heater, heater fan, wiper motor and heater valve at some point. for now I will just continue along with that I have, which is getting it running - check - driving - it moves, but not on the road yet, brakes - they stop but need to be gone through, have only moved the car about 30 feet since I got it.

    But it is doing well so far and I expect to have it on the road in no time.

    I'm enjoying just getting there and tinkering with it. I think I will end up pulling the whole exhaust to work on it, but will see how it goes.

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    You've been busy! It's been fun reading about your efforts and progress. Sounds like you're having a good time at it as well. Please continue to keep us up to date.


    Mickey
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Great to see progress! Keep us abreast of future successes. Look to lean out that Weber at idle to see if it will smooth out.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Update as of February 23, 2020.

    Exhaust back together and sounds good. not too loud, just the right amount of burble that I like.

    new bottom carb gasket in and adjusted so secondary opening and it seems to run pretty good.

    Oil and filter changed.

    Fuel sender now working - added a ground to new sender as it required it.

    Moto-lita is installed!! looks sweet.

    Removed the chrome bumper over riders and just have bolts now. Got a sweet solution for the license plate lamps that are not there that should be trick.

    new header seal for top to windshield is installed as it was missing. so top is now sealing properly against windshield.

    Lots of tidbits and things on order, horns, washer pump, horn brush for steering wheel, and a host of other little things. I just ordered a bunch of the things I figured I would be needing to save on shipping.

    Biggest thing, carpets and interior panels ordered! Brand new coming in late next week! So stoked.

    Big thing on to do list is to buy seat belts. Will order some wesco ones in brown with chrome buckles should look so nice with the interior.

    Soon I'll tackle the brakes I'm just procrastinating on it as I'm trying to tackle a bunch of stuff and I just don't feel like taking the wheels off yet. Will need to get some rubber soon too. Debating on size. 185/70/14 or 195/60/14 - had 195/60 on my 1980 and it was nice. but 185/70 is much closer to the original size in rolling diameter. just torn as I like the look of the slightly lower profile. never had issues with them on the rostyle wheels in the past even though they are on the wide side, but I think I'll end up with 185/70.

    Thats it for now. I'm trying to work on it as much as I can. She'll be back on the road sooner than later.

  13. #33
    Moderator Mickey Richaud's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Good to see that you're progressing, and more importantly, having a good time with it!

    Mickey
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Is it weird that I miss making any progress? I haven't gotten over to the car in a couple of days and I miss it already. I just want to go get some more things on my list checked off.

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Oh yeah - the B bug has bitten ya big time! Patience, Grasshopper...
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Great Pumpkin DrEntropy's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Quote Originally Posted by B72Blue View Post
    Is it weird that I miss making any progress? I haven't gotten over to the car in a couple of days and I miss it already. I just want to go get some more things on my list checked off.


    Yeah, pesky interference of reality. The MG project can be good therapy. Almost as good as a top-down drive on a sunny afternoon.
    '64 MGB, '67 Lotus Elan S-3 DHC,'69 Lotus Elan +2
    '78 Alfa Romeo Spider-undergoing surgery: O=\*/=O
    '84 300D Turbo-"Diesela"-Now my Daily: Oo|≣|oO
    '02 Toyota Camry- SWMBO's 'new-to-her' Daily. <sigh>
    Chaos & Mayhem PTY, LTD..C.I.O. & Floor Sweepervisor

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Update as of February 29, 2020.

    The carpets, interior panels and several other pieces I ordered came in.

    Its getting there. Can;t wait to start piecing the interior back together. Lots of work to do before that happens. got some sound mat and stuff to install to help with insulation of the cabin.

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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Multiple updates

    March 2, 2020

    I was at a client today who happened to be a couple of blocks away from where my B is. I had a break for a couple of hours in the work I was doing as I had to wait on the client to get back to go over their job. I figured why not get lunch, and go get at least something done on the B.

    So of course Since I had gotten some parts in, I immediately decided I wanted to at least put on the shifter boot, but then I thought, wait I need to take the console out anyway as I will be steam cleaning it, and then seeing how it looks before deciding the next step, of either painting it, or replacing it. I'm leaning towards painting it with some colorbond black. I could do autumn leaf colorbond as I bought some but not sure if I want to get rid of the contrast that was there from the factory. So I put that on hold.

    I decided to try to get the bulb into the brake check switch, it just wont screw in, its like its a tiny bit too big. I'll just buy a new switch I guess. If I can only figure out how to get it out of the dash I will see if I can put the bulb in on the bench or I will possibly try to solder an led into it. Either way not too important.

    I got to work next on installing the horn bush. Got it installed and the horn connected and the factory horns didn't seem to work. though I may have been doing it wrong in my testing, but I know they use a ground trigger, and they barely made a sound when trying to test them with a ground connection. SoI ended up just putting in some new ones and I like the authoritative sound the new ones make.

    I also went and got some additional fuel to add to the tank. Car starts great and revs well, but its got a lumpy idle. I will need to go through and check the valves and adjust as needed. Possible could have something else going on, but figure while I am doing the valves I will work on reclocking the dizzy so firing order is correct.

    So not as much work I was able to do today, but the more little things I cross off my list the better.

    Just happy its still coming along.



    March 3, 2020

    Had a light work day, so I had a chance to tackle two things that were bugging me on the B.

    Today, I did 2 things. Well 3 if you count tinkering with the carb some more.

    I have been reading up on valve clearances, watched some youtube videos, and determined it was time to check the valve clearances. After all this is an engine that had not run in 20 years. It does not have a smooth idle when running, So I'm thinking the car either the car has a worn cam, possibly another issue like worn rocker, or some issues related to the carb.I'm planning on changing the manifold gasket too since I picked one up, and will def need to check compression. WHo knows, issue may be all in the dizzy. so perhaps I will need to have it sent to jeff when he is able to get more stuff done in the future, or find a replacement. I am not convinced the dizzy I have is 100%. though seems ok and has a good spark from what I can tell.

    I have no history on the car or the engine. so who really knows the total condition. Maybe it just needs to be driven or maybe it needs a refresh. We shall see.

    So I got out my feeler gauges, got out my screwdriver and my 1/2" wrench. Turned the engine over with the plugs out, started at cylinder 1, checked and made a slight adjustment as the 15 thou feeler was very tight and not sliding in smoothly with a little bit of tension. Went through and checked all the valves and only a few were barely off. Good.

    Next I determined it was time to reclock the dizzy. turned the engine and Set the rotor to point at #4 as that was technically #1. Pulled out the Dizzy, pulled out the hold down, pulled out the sleeve, used the bolt from the SU air cleaner that was sitting in the trunk and pulled out the gear. flipped it 180, slid it back in noting it was pointing exactly in the opposite direction it was before. and put the pieces back in place. Put the dizzy back in, set the firing order back to how it should be. This was a very simple thing to do actually and having watched John Twists video on it I was so confident knowing the whole procedure.

    She fired up, but seems like she ran a bit better when the dizzy was clocked the other way. but that could be just me because well if it was backwards I needed to do some adjusting anyway. Got the engine nicely warmed up, and then Went ahead and adjusted the advance on the dizzy a bit. readjusted the carb and its def running decent. Still has a lumpy idle and tach does teeter back and forth at around 900 rpms, but the engine revs much better now with hardly a hint of the weber hesitation. so I think its getting there. still fires up better than any new car. Turn key, crank once and vroom its running. I think I will need to rebuild the weber at some point.

    So a productive hour and a half today.

    She's getting there.

    March 4, 2020

    After watching john Twist explain that the 40897 is the best Dizzy for the cars I found one for a killer price that should be in decent shape. Plan to try it out when it gets in in a week or so.

    Figure it could also work well to be the one that I would send to Jeff for a going through to have setup for the car. Who knows that is for the future.

    Also picked up a new coil so that's coming in because figure I may as well. worst case is no difference with a new coil but figure it can't hurt.

    Contemplating putting in electronics for the points but figure if the points work, why mess with it. I have the electronics kit but just on the fence about it.

    Will hopefully get over to the car to put in some more work. I should take more pictures too, but just doing little mechanical things here and there and trying to check all these little things off the list.

    I really want to continue to work on the car to get it running right. Will need tires for sure and need to go through the brakes. I think I will need to get the brakes handled Next time I am there as its lingering over my head.

    I will pick up some tires only after the brakes are handled. it will need all the tires, but figure I can get away with an old tire as the spare.

    I'm debating trying to get a different wheel for the spare to save space, then I thought of trying to find a collapsable spare for a 14" wheel and mount that on the original wheel. May be something to consider.

    So many little project to cover and not enough time to do them all but I will get there slowly but surely.

    Loving how everytime I see the car, there is progress no matter how small, a little progress here or there is always a good thing.

    March 6, 2020

    Didn't get to the car for the last couple of days, but thats ok. Seatbelts from Wesco will be arriving next week! Also, ordered some nice holders from the UK that will fit on the headrest rod, which will help the belt be nicely positioned. Much better looking than the black plastic ones, the ones I got appear to be chrome.

    Dizzy will be here late next week hopefully. he wont be shipping until monday or tuesday.

    New coil arrived.

    Got a TDC piston stop tool, figure it can help to make sure I get this thing dialed in properly. I think it needs tweaking or that weber carb is just over fueling the engine. who knows, but I want to do everything I can myself without paying someone to work on it. I think I'm getting closer to either rebuilding the SU's and putting them on the car and ditching the weber, but I must say it starts and revs so well with the weber on it, that I think I need to figure out the timing and probably be sure the valves are properly adjusted, not sure if I got it right, but I did follow the rule of 9's. I think I need to watch a few more vids on it.

    Thats it for now. If you got this far, thanks so much for reading a huge post with lots of the updates.

  19. #39
    Moderator Mickey Richaud's Avatar
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    Thanks for the update, Alon. You've really come a long way with this thing! It's so good to see someone dive in and tackle this kind of project. And it's great to experience your enjoyment vicariously through your posts. And I'm truly looking forward to reading about your first drive - no doubt you'll be grinning ear to ear!

    I will offer one bit: regarding the points-vs-electronic distributor, you'll get lots of opinions (and probably already heard many). Being of the old school, I've chosen to stay with points. I like that if something goes wrong on the road, it's easy to "massage" the points back to health, whereas with electronic, when it dies it's a goner and you need to carry replacement items. And as you're getting one rebuilt from Jeff at Advanced, it'll be all set properly for your car. And if you haven't had any dealings with Jeff in the past, you'll be most pleasantly surprised with the quality of his work.

    Carry on!
    Mickey
    "There are three kinds of men. One who learns by readin'. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on that electric fence for themselves." Will Rogers
    Mickey Richaud - '73 MGB, '69 MGB GT/V6 (both SOLD! ); Victor TF 1800; '03 Jaguar XK8
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    Re: 1972 MGB Project Blue First attempt and fixing no spark and other checks

    I'm still big time on the fend on weber vs SU I want the SU, but there will be tons of work to go through them and all and the car does run with the weber. doesn't idle smooth, but does run and rev well. Not sure why its lumpy at idle, but it seems to be kind of improved over before I'm very sure I need to get the timing right, valve adjustments need to be double checked and need to get the carb adjusted and it should be ok,

    But I do much prefer the overall look of the SU's, I get mixed reports from people, some say SU is way better and very reliable once set up, and then I get others telling me the SU's leak oil, need this and that and constant tweaking and the weber once dialed in is well just dialed in and ready to go.

    Conflicted.

    Su's look much better and kind of like the old school look they give. Just need to figure it out.

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