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TR6 1974 TR6: Ballast vs Non-ballast system. A look at the wiring.

TRopic6

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Holy Moly Brah, those points are pitted to 'da max. Actually I ran them till they were worse than that on my TR4 back in college. She'll run with 'em like that but it won't do the timing any favors. New points are in order and you can't go wrong with Jeff at Advanced Distributors. I use Amazon Prime to get stuff to Hawaii with free shipping; try looking up LU1617 on Amazon (made by Standard Motor Products - US made). But your FLAPS probably has them too (or a Chinese variant...).

You get full voltage at the ballast wire with no load, then the voltage will drop with current flow. If you have a meter you can measure between the cut end and the white wire over at the fusebox; I got about 5 ohms on my cheap meter. You may get less because your wire is a little short (remember, this a family forum, folks...)

That wire originally went to the coil + terminal, connected to the same female terminal as the white/yellow wire. There are a few things to consider before hooking it back up, and someone cur it for a reason. The original starter relay had two independent 12V outputs: 1 to the starter solenoid and one to the coil.

When running off the ignition circuit, there is 9 or so volts at the coil + terminal from the ballast wire, which is connected to the white/yellow wire. If the other end of the white/yellow wire is connected to something, there will be current flow in the white/yellow wire whenever the car is running. A shorted starter relay might do it, or if someone used a single throw relay to replace the Lucas starter relay, there can be current flow through the white/red wire to the solenoid. Probably more that you need to know, but can you post a picture of your relays?

Jeff
 
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2wrench

2wrench

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Holy Moly Brah, those points are pitted to 'da max. Actually I ran them till they were worse than that on my TR4 back in college. She'll run with 'em like that but it won't do the timing any favors. New points are in order and you can't go wrong with Jeff at Advanced Distributors. I use Amazon Prime to get stuff to Hawaii with free shipping; try looking up LU1617 on Amazon (made by Standard Motor Products - US made). But your FLAPS probably has them too (or a Chinese variant...).

You get full voltage at the ballast wire with no load, then the voltage will drop with current flow. If you have a meter you can measure between the cut end and the white wire over at the fusebox; I got about 5 ohms on my cheap meter. You may get less because your wire is a little short (remember, this a family forum, folks...)

That wire originally went to the coil + terminal, connected to the same female terminal as the white/yellow wire. There are a few things to consider before hooking it back up, and someone cur it for a reason. The original starter relay had two independent 12V outputs: 1 to the starter solenoid and one to the coil.

When running off the ignition circuit, there is 9 or so volts at the coil + terminal from the ballast wire, which is connected to the white/yellow wire. If the other end of the white/yellow wire is connected to something, there will be current flow in the white/yellow wire whenever the car is running. A shorted starter relay might do it, or if someone used a single throw relay to replace the Lucas starter relay, there can be current flow through the white/red wire to the solenoid. Probably more that you need to know, but can you post a picture of your relays?

Jeff

Jeff: See attached. Thanks.
 

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dklawson

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At 5 pages long I know I am starting to forget items posted on previous pages. As such I am going to send you a PM with a couple of observations rather than clutter this post.

I fully agree with Jeff that your points are shot. By "dress the points" I did indeed mean to file them flat. It is very likely that the condition of your points was caused either by running a very long time, or the using a ballast coil without a matching ballast resistor.

My experience with the early "2" series Lucas distributors are the 4-cylinder 23D & 24D models. I assume the 22D Randall mentioned above will be similar. When putting the points and insulator washers on the breaker plate it is best to pause for a moment and think about what the points and condenser are supposed to do.

The points provide a path to ground for current passing through the coil. The points must open and close (making and breaking that ground connection). The condenser is a "bucket" that both aids the charge/discharge of the coil and helps suppress the arc that happens as the points open. The mounting foot of the points and the mounting foot of the condenser both attach to the breaker plate and are ground connections. On the "2" series distributors there is also supposed to be a "high-flex" wire that goes between the breaker plate and the dizzy housing. That high-flex wire is important. Without it, current has to pass through the breaker plate (and its bearings) to ground. Make sure there is a ground wire between breaker plate and the dizzy housing.

These early points separate into the mounting foot (with one contact) and the moving arm/spring and the second contact. The foot goes down first. Then the first nylon washer goes over the threaded post. The moving arm of the points goes on next. The two wire terminals go on next (one for the condenser, the other for the wire exiting the side of the distributor). Then the second nylon washer goes THROUGH the electrical terminals and into the spring for the moving arm of the points. Finally any metal washers and the nut go on top and are tightened to complete the assembly.

Now consider the current flow. Current leaving the coil moves down the wire between coil (-) and into the dizzy, reaching that terminal on the moving arm of the points. That arm does not have a path to ground when the points are open because of the insulating washers on the threaded stud. Since the condenser also connects at that location, it becomes active in the circuit (charging up when the points are open). When the points close, current flows through the points and the magnetic field in the coil builds up. The condenser discharges. Open the points and the coil discharges and the condenser charges. The coil's magnetic field collapses and you get a high voltage spike for the spark. It only works properly when the spring for the moving arm of the points and the two wires (to the coil and condenser) are isolated from ground.
 
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2wrench

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Jeff: C4 connection in picture 1 is the white and yellow, which is connected through the harness to the coil. C1 connector behind C4 is the red and white wire going to the starter. W1 and W2 are white and orange which services the seat belt module and the ground wires (W2) respectively.

Photos 2 and 3 I have not researched. Seems they had less pertinence, on first look, if I remember right....save, on closer inspection, one wire connected doesn't look in real good condition near the "paddle connector."
 
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2wrench

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Thank you, Doug, for your well written explanation on the importance of not messing up the points install with the nylon washers. I appreciate the concept, but I will revisit in order to attempt to more fully digest what you have written. I am hoping to try a summation post later, a sort of: "Don't let this happen to you," kind of thing. I am convinced that this thread, while very helpful for me, would be difficult for someone else to appreciate later.

Please excuse my manner of posting at this time. I do not mean to be screaming, but I want to make another point that could play in for us all to consider, and I want it to stand out:

I HAVE CHANGED MY STARTER TO THE HIGH TORQUE (Newer Toyota conversion) STARTER.
 

TRopic6

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Dennis,
Your relays are connected properly. Photo 1 is the starter relay and looks OK. Photo 2/3 is the horn relay; all wires there should be purple-based and they are. You ought to mount them on the tab aft of the fusebox (see Post #18) before driving though.

Are the points Blue Streaks? (look on the bottom) The fixed side for them was open, but it was cleanly machined. I think Randell is right - high current flow can pit then up.

Jeff
 
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2wrench

2wrench

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I believe we are getting there, gentlemen. Thank you for your help.

A few more pictures and questions: See a picture of the top of the Dizzy with points and wires removed. In pictures 1 and 2, is the black cloth-like insulated wire a ground wire as has been described by Doug? If so, it looks as if that connection is weak. If it can and should be replaced, what type or what gauge wire should be used. Lift the tab with a screwdriver, insert wire end and tap her down? Also, in picture 3, is the white wire hanging at about 9:00 o'clock the high-flex wire also mentioned by Doug? If so, I understand it must be connected to the points plate to effect ground.

photo.jpgphoto (2).jpgphoto (3).jpg
 
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The points do not have any marking to indicate they are Blue Streaks. I am thinking we are getting to the point of simply installing the new points. I just want to be careful not to make a mistake and be back here again. Moving cautiously. Thanks.
 

TR3driver

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The wire with the black cloth is the ground wire. The actual connection won't be at that tab; instead the portion of wire that sticks out from the tab to the right in your photo should be welded to the terminal. Hard to say for certain, but it looks OK to me. For the best check (IMO), remove the screw where it attaches to the case and check for continuity between the loose end and the point plate (with a DMM or test light) while tugging gently (!) on the wire. The wire is a special easy-flex construction, but does sometimes break inside the insulation.

The white wire is also supposed to be easy-flex, but does not connect to ground. Instead, it links the point spring and condenser lead to the side terminal on the distributor.

As noted, those points are pretty well shot; I'd just replace them. Points only last about 5000 miles under the best of conditions, they are a consumable item (like motor oil). Like Jeff, I've limped along with worse, but you wind up with a car that never runs quite right and needs fiddled with every weekend. Check your local auto parts store, there is a good chance they can get them in a few days so you won't have to pay shipping.
 
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2wrench

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The saga continues.

I bought and installed a new set of points. Bought a new condenser as well but did not install it. Going for minimal changes and checking.
So, the car started the first time. It ran rough, pretty bad, like on five cylinders. I had set the points at .016.

Shut it off. reset the points to a liberal .014. The car started and ran better, but needed choke to keep running. Slowly, pushed in the
choke while she was running. Then kind of slowly indicated she wasn't happy, was going to die. Gave her additional gas, kept her going,
but eventually, she stopped running.

Tried to start her up again. No dice. Exactly as before. Turns over flat, as if there is no spark or no gas. Had difficulty getting a good photo
this time, but one side might show you something. Note: The car ran for about five minutes with these new points.

photo.jpg
 

poolboy

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I think it's a fuel delivery or carb problem.
If it starts and runs, even poorly, that pretty much tells you that you had spark.
 

dklawson

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Agreed. With all the new ignition parts and adjustments it sounds like it is time to move on to at least check the basic carb settings including the float level.
 
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2wrench

2wrench

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I know absolutely nothing about carbs. Is it time to pay the shop fees? Do these points look prematurely worn? They were only in the car for five minutes running. Could I be coached through a look at the carbs?
 

dklawson

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It is hard to say how worn your new points are. Use them and keep an eye on them. As Randall said earlier, they are typically good for only about 5k miles, maybe 10k if you dress them flat regularly and re-adjust. Remember what they are doing... switching at least 4 Amps on and off 150 times a second at 3k RPM for a 6 cylinder.
 
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2wrench

2wrench

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:excitement: Replaced a ground wire in the Dizzy.
Replaced the condenser.
Cleaned and lubricated Dizzy plate and weights under the Dizzy plate that affect vacuum advance.
Replaced "power" wires with white 14 gauge wire.

Pleased to announce: She runs! (13 second video).




Thanks to all of you for your help! I couldn't have done this without you.
 
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2wrench

2wrench

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This is about as good of a tutorial on the rebuilding and the basic tuning of ZS carbs as you'll find online:
https://www.buckeyetriumphs.org/technical/Carbs/CarbsI/CarbsI.htm
If you want someone to rebuild and adjust them for you, contact me with a PM.

Thanks for this great information. I am growing into my vehicle. It has been since 2007 or so since I began. I will be coming back to this when I am not falling asleep from taking cough and cold medicine. This is one I don't want to lose. Appreciate you looking in.
 

dklawson

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Congratulations !!!

I meant to post the following information earlier concerning the high-flex wires that you and Randall discussed (between breaker plate and housing and between the points and insulated connection going to the coil).

Several sources sell the little jumper that goes between the points and the coil wire connection (the one with the plastic connector molded on one end). I have not seen people selling the breaker plate ground wire. When necessary, I have taken used electric motor brushes and cut the copper feed wires off of them to make my own high-flex distributor wires. (You need access to a motor repair shop or maintenance department to find these items). The motor brush wires are made of the same type of extremely fine stranded high-flex copper wire as the ones in the distributor. You can use regular crimp terminals on the end. However, you may need to save and re-use the fiberglass-type insulation off your old wires for the repair if the brushes you find as donors do not have insulated wires.

The picture below of motor brushes shows the type of wires I am talking about.
(NOTE: The picture is not mine... it just shows the type of wire attached to a motor brush).

lonnie77-albums-power-window-motor-picture5306-final-brush.jpg
 
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