March 31, 2010 at 11:32 am #232934
Just thought I’d share my latest engine troubles with the group. A couple of weeks ago I noticed an oil leak and discovered that it was coming from a broken down valve cover gasket. I was quick to replace it with a rather nice fitting rubber gasket. After I completed the install I started the car and discovered that it would only run while the key was cranking. I could rev the engine and keep it running, as soon as you stop cranking, OFF, it just shuts down!
So I checked the fuel first, It was getting gas no problem. I made sure the plug wires were good, check. I said the hell with it, must be electrical and most of the parts are cheap and like 30 years old so I started replacing stuff. I put on a new ballast resistor, Ignition coil, Ignition module, even a starter for good measure. I go to crank it up (it cranks really nice now) and same thing.
According to the pinto guys it is a bad Ignition switch causing this. Here is a link to the thread if you are interested: http://www.fordpinto.com/index.php?topic=14833.0
I have a 2.3 donor from a 78 Pinto, but it turns out the ignition switch was from a 76 pinto. Of course the 78 switch is readily available everywhere, and the 76 switch is no longer manufactured. I finally found it a RockAuto(I got 1 of the last 7) and should receive it today. I’ll let you guys know how it goes. Just though I’d share this in case anyone else runs into a similar issue.March 31, 2010 at 5:52 pm #240891Dan RosaParticipant
I would check wires first,, is the switch on the Column ? that is only the key ,,,the switch is down on the column by your foot wires can come loose and if it worked before you did work on it the first time ,,that is ware i would check first up top around the valve covers where ever you were working ..GEE i wish Mine would do that so I could justify changing to a dash mounted key like it should be !!!but i would keep the column mounted left and right i could not get used to that dash thing!!
DanMarch 31, 2010 at 9:53 pm #240892Larry MurphyParticipant
Geoff, If my memory is correct, when the switch is in the start position the ballast [resistor] is bypassed and you get a full 12 volts to the coil to start the engine. when the switch is returned to the on [run] position the current goes thru the resistor.The problem could be a bad switch , bad resistor, bad connection or possibly something hooked up wrong.Perhaps a connector end worked loose when you were moving things arround.It would surprise me if the switch went bad at the same time you were working on the valve cover.April 1, 2010 at 9:39 am #240893Steve CritesParticipant
Betcha it’s a connection that got knocked loose or put back in the wrong place. I would check and double check from the starter circuit back up to the switch and run circuit. Don’t assume that because you didn’t remove a wire yourself that it didn’t come loose while you were under the hood.
Don’t you just love electrical problemsApril 1, 2010 at 11:49 am #240894
Thanks for the advice guys.
I am starting to appreciate anyone with enough patience to work on an electrical system. I did receive the new switch yesterday, but they sent me a broken one. I was tipped off when I couldn’t tell the difference between it and a maraca. It had something rattling around on the inside, so they are sending a new one. I have located a couple loose wires and fixed them, I will keep searching. It is like a big knotty mess of wires under my dash! I guess it’s time to start organizing and labeling them. Hopefully I learn something………April 1, 2010 at 3:33 pm #240895
Have you tried a hot-wire set up?…a #14 gauge wire with an alligator clip on each end.
Power from the + terminal on the battery direct to the + side terminal of the coil…then crank it up and see if it stays running in the “on” postion?
Do all the accessories work when the key is in the “on” position…even if the car won’t stay running?April 1, 2010 at 4:11 pm #240896
the lights and all work, the engine just won’t stay running. I’ll try the hotwire! Sounds like fun.April 1, 2010 at 7:31 pm #240897Dan RosaParticipant
HOT WIRE ,,,WOW just like when at 16 i got my car taken away for ???!!! I got cought,, my father knew every one in town I Never did that again,, and I got home before he did DanApril 2, 2010 at 10:40 am #240898
I got caught driving my father’s new 1965 Ford Custom 500 coupe on the last night after I had driven it for a week!
My parents went to my grandparents house in the Adirondacks for a week. There was a set of keys in a magnetic box on the inside fenderwell. No need to hot wire. I had even disconnected the speedometer.
The cops kept the car overnight and drove me home. The other 4 kids in the car with me all had their parents come to the police station to get them.April 3, 2010 at 8:44 am #240899John McDermonParticipant
My memory is foggy on this (and many other things! lol), but I seem to recall that there is a wiring connection on the top side of the engine (in the area between the carb and the valve cover.) It may relate to energizing some of the EPA equipment. But it must be connected to relay power to the coil.
Good luck. If I get time I’ll research it some more. Post what you find for future owners… 🙂April 5, 2010 at 1:23 am #240900boviParticipant
I would get a volt meter and a wiring diagram and starting at the coil check voltages with the key off and then on.
ex: with the key on and the black wire from the meter on a ground you will see either a + or – 12 Volts. If there is no voltage then check the two contacts on the key sw. With the ignition on they should both have the same voltage on them. with it off only 1 of them will have a voltageApril 7, 2010 at 10:19 am #240901
Well I got my new ignition switch. That didn’t work! I still have to get the volt meter and try the tests that Bovi and Mark suggested. I also am having trouble seating the Ignition switch the way I had it originally. I can’t seem to get it to where you need to hit the release button on the bottom of the steering wheel to free the key. (this is how it always was) I keep repositioning it but haven’t found that sweet spot yet. Right now the hey can be removed in the lock position without hitting the button on the bottom of the wheel column. Oh well! more tests and searching~April 13, 2010 at 11:18 am #240902
I tried the HotWire setup. It made no difference. I also just picked up a volt meter, so when I can I will do some checking….I may have to call in a professional though because I am stumped!April 13, 2010 at 12:31 pm #240903
Sounds like the ignition module is fried. Is it Duraspark?April 13, 2010 at 2:45 pm #240904
I replaced the Ignition module last week, I’m fairly sure that’s not the problem…April 15, 2010 at 12:45 pm #240905
So I broke down and found a Ford Certified electrical specialist. He is going to fix my running issue ( he says one of the wires must have been disconnected like many of you thought) He is also going to properly “clock” the ignition switch on the column so that the key comes out in the correct position. While he is at it I am having him fine tune the timing ,and carb mixture screws for good measure. All for $125.00 he is even going to come to my house to do the work.
I have a car show every Fri 1 mile from my house and every Saturday 2 miles from my house. I am missing out on too much fun, so I called a professional. Hopefully I will be cruising by Saturday!April 15, 2010 at 3:59 pm #240906edward ericsonParticipant
I salute you, sir! Two weeks is plenty of time to muck with something one doesn’t comprehend before calling in someone who does. A guy who’ll do a housecall like that for $125 sounds like a real find. Hope you’re cruising soon.April 16, 2010 at 10:39 am #240907
What did Wille Nelson say?….”On the Road Again”
Great news…have fund at the cruises.April 16, 2010 at 11:29 am #240908
Hahaha! Funny Mark. Willie is a wise man, but wasn’t it Kenny Rogers that said :
“You gotta…Know when to hold em, know when to
fold em, know when to walk away, and know when to call a real mechanic.”April 17, 2010 at 6:25 am #240909Rich BellefeuilleParticipant
Sounds like a bargain! I’m hoping to hear positive reports soon. We had a short warm spell the first week of April and I had mine out of mothballs for the first major rides. A few sputters and skips, but now she’s running fine. Great fun!!
RichApril 19, 2010 at 11:38 am #240910
The issue was a broken or disconnected wire with not staying running. He couldn’t find the problem wire so he just ran a new one from the ignition to the ignition module. he also removed the ballast resistor from the equation. I think he might want to put that back though because I noticed the Coil gets really hot now. He started to dial in the timing and fuel mixture but the carb was only running on one barrel due to a clog somewhere. I spent about an hour yesterday and cleaned the crap out of the carb so now that’s running well again. I just have to get him back to finish the work. (he also managed to bust the dipstick so now it’s dripping oil while it’s running.) He said he will replace it with a new chrome one so no harm. Once the timing and mixture are set back right I think I’ll be good to go for a while. Phew! He did offer to rewire the entire car if I got a new harness, if the price is right I may just end up doing that over the winter next year. It would prove beneficial to have everything nice, neat, and labeled. I’ll post again when everything is finally tip top.April 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm #240911
Great news…glad you’re running, but remember if you re-wire the car, that steering column may still have a bad wire.
I’d consider a dash mounted ignition switch and disabling the steering column lock if you rewire the car.April 19, 2010 at 2:18 pm #240912
Good advice Mark! I will definitely look into that. Thanks~
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