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Ignition Problems


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#1 floss

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Posted 23 December 2009 - 10:45 PM

~~~~~Please delete this text before posting the topic~~~~~~
Please give your topic a title that quickly describes your problem. Just putting 'Help my Mini doesn't work' is useless to anyone trying to help.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Aussie clubman Van
1972 with a late model a plus 1275:
I have fuel and engine turns over but doesn't ignite and start. Spark is weak


Any non-standard parts that might be involved with the problem?
Was running a pulsar Dizzy but have changed it to a lucas with ecu to try to fix.

Hey everyone,
Fristly, apologies for posting questions on here. I haven't answered many on here ( usually on ausmini but its down now and im running out of idea's) so feel like the greedy kid who eats other peoples lunches.

I have been building my van for almost 2 years now and it is so close to drivable that i can taste it.

Some background
Starter motor was skipping so I pulled it out and went through it and found the problem. Put it back in and made the naff mistake of not seeing that the solenoid to startermotor wire ( a big bare copper one) was just grazing the dizzy. Turned the car over and the starter motor worked a dream... The downside was big arching sparks and smoke :)
After running around like a mad man i fixed this up and tried again. It ran ok. Turned it off and on again and it still fired. Finished up for the weekend.

Next weekend i tried it again and no go. Engine turns over, it has fuel, it had a tiny little spark on 1. Spoke to a mate who actually has a clue about electricals and we tested a few things. Used a testing light to test. We are getting the power to the coil, from coil to dizzy (don't know how much and will test this weekend). IT was getting sparks but tiny tiny ones. I could hold the leadsd in my hand and no pain. PReviously this made me do a funny dance when I held them.

I assumed that I had blown up the dizzy so I got a new ( second hand) one to test. I turned engine over to that I thought was TDC and the rotor points to about 530. Thought i might be 180 out ( im not good at maffs :xmas: ) but then it was 1130. PUlled the dizzy out and put new one in. still nothing... ITs all connected properly but still no good.

I popped the timing cover off and span the engine over to see what is going on. I am a bit of a mechanical dud and havent done this before. On the fw I could see a bunch of marks.
A big white one ( PO did this)
a bunch of dots with what looks like 0, 5, 10 written on them and a small X stamped into the diaghram ( the outer piece with bolts in it)

Which one do i use?


Things I will do on the weekend.
-Test a new battery in case my firestarter starter motor incident messed it up.
-Try a new coil
Any other suggestions?

Sorry for this epic post but I thought it would be better to give to much info and not enough.

Thanks in advance to everyone and merry xmas.

Cheers
David

#2 bmcecosse

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Posted 23 December 2009 - 10:57 PM

Not understanding 'lucas dizzy with ecu' ? Best to revert to good old points dizzy and get it going. You must have a big fat spark AT THE PLUG to have any hope of it starting.

#3 floss

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 12:09 AM

Not understanding 'lucas dizzy with ecu' ? Best to revert to good old points dizzy and get it going. You must have a big fat spark AT THE PLUG to have any hope of it starting.


Hey Mate,
Sorry i didn't have the details of the new one at hand.
I have tried two different Dizzy's one that works ( pulsar dizzy) A+ 59D4 with Pertronix Ignitor. The pulsar one worked previously in this car and gave a great spark. The 59d4 worked in the other fella's mini before selling.

#4 jaydee

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 11:12 AM

Thought i might be 180 out ( im not good at maffs >_< ) but then it was 1130.


What do you mean by 1130?

If it started before, it have to start even now..
Crank engine at cylinder nr1 on TDC and take off dizzy cap.
is the rotor arm pointing on cylinder 1 (high on your right as you're lookin at the dizzy, should be pointing something like 1:30 clock)?
Have correctly connected HT leads in right firing order 1342 ?

#5 dklawson

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 01:44 PM

Floss, on the Ausmini forum you may want to contact my friend Kevin Green. He's a wealth of knowledge and may be more local to you. Kevin is a wealth of knowledge AND is very familiar with the Nissan distributor.

First I have some questions and comments. You said you've been running the Pulsar dizzy. Then you said you were trying to run an A+ dizzy... You shouldn't be able to use both as they are physically different. The Nissan dizzy is more or less compatible with the A-series engine, the A+ dizzy... not so much.

You said that previously when you held the spark plug leads you would do a dance. That may be a clue to what's going on. The insulation on the plug wires should be protective enough that you can/could handle the wires without getting shocked. If you WERE getting shocked before, that's an indication that the plug wires themselves are failing. There's a good chance that they are shorting out to the point that they won't carry current to the plugs anymore.

Based on that, I'd suggest getting a new cap, rotor, and set of plug wires. The Nissan ignition module is pretty robust. I'd suggest putting it back in, supplying power directly to the coil and dizzy, and trying to crank again with fresh plug wires, cap, and rotor. You might just be surprised. Also, (as Roy said above) if your friend has an A-series dizzy (DM2, 25D, or 45D) with points, try that distributor to rule out the electronic ignition components.

You've also apparently pulled the dizzy to experiment. Be sure to determine your ignition timing again as best you can. The Nissan dizzy cannot be static timed as such. You'll need to turn the engine over until you reach the desired timing marks WITH #1 cylinder near 5-8 BTDC then turn the Nissan dizzy first CCW then CW until the "blades" on the dizzy pickup are more or less aligned with the tips of the reluctor. Once the engine starts you'll need to use a timing light to set it right.

#6 floss

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Posted 24 December 2009 - 09:29 PM

jaydee
Thanks for your reply
By 1130 im referring to a clockface. Almost straight up.
Firing order is 1342 ccw and lead 1 is on rotor when at TDC

dklawson
Kevin is a great Fella and it amazes me how much info is in that head of his >_<

The car has had a pulsar dizzy in it since i purchased it. I thought the problem could be the dizzy so i grabbed another one to try.
The motor is an a+ and both dizzy's fit and should work as they look the same. I think the pulsar one has been converted to work in the A+ motor

The leads are new. They are maybe 6 months old and my mini has been off the road for nearly 2 years now so they can't be worn out.
I have a list of things i will try when I get home. If still no luck, when the mini shops open up again I will go and get new leads, new cap and a new rotor.

I have been hinting about an agjustable timing light for xmas so hopefully that will happen and I can do the timing :P

Does weak spark suggest the coil could be misbehaving?

Thanks again for your help everyone.

David


#7 dklawson

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Posted 25 December 2009 - 04:44 PM

Hi David,

It sounds like most of the components are new. While the plug wires are relatively new, they shouldn't have shocked you either. As a minimum, wipe the wires down with WD-40 and repeat your test. Also, if they are resistance type wires, check their resistance end to end. They should measure less than about 8000 Ohms.

I had overlooked your comment that the 59D dizzy has Pertronix installed. If both the Nissan and Pertronix dizzys have a weak spark, it's unlikely to be a problem in the dizzy itself.

I have a PDF document on points ignitions and it includes a troubleshooting section. You can put the 59D dizzy in and follow the steps in the PDF as if points were installed. (The Nissan module works differently and I can't tell you how to troubleshoot it). Anyway, with the Pertronix installed the PDF may help you determine where you are loosing voltage or spark energy.

http://home.mindspri...tsIgnitions.pdf

Merry Christmas !




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