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123 ignition problems

562 Views 19 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Gubi
Hi everyone! first of all! Sorry for the long post! I'm hoping someone in this group can help me! I'm really about to give up.. So I bought the 123 Bluetooth version. it came with a programmed curve that was supposed to be the correct one for my 1983 spider, i had the bosch 0237002018 whit vacuum. So I put the engine at tdc.

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Wood Tints and shades Font Automotive tire Pattern

if someone see something I have missed in these pictures please let me know!
So then I turn the 123 counterclockwise and the led goes on.. tighten everything down.. The cars starts, but runs quit bad, backfiring, slow on the crank.
I try to set the advance to the blue dot. 7degrees? doesn't work, car runs like a piece of crap.. after like 30 attempts doing the same procedure, following the instructions I realised that the rotor doesn't really point at nr 1 sparkplug wire, it's a little bit past the number one.. I have seen a lot of people having this issue, but haven't been able to sort it out, so maybe this is not the problem, although I really think it should be pointing at number one...

So I gave the the guy ho sold me the 123 a call, and he says, no I programmed it so you are supposed to light the led at the static advanced, not tdc.. Ok, so I put the engine at the blue dot get the led to lid up, (stil not pointing towards nr1) runs even vorse...

so I take a look at the curve that was programmed... looks a litte bit strange..

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So I do some homework, and after a lot of reading I have programmed this curve and vacuum

Slope Rectangle Font Parallel Pattern

Font Slope Parallel Rectangle Pattern

So I uploaded the curves, got the green led to light at TDC, the cars fires up, and runs somewhat ok,but it's really getting late, so I dicided to continue the day after, getting the engine warm and and then set the timing.
Since that evening ,the car hasn't started..
No spark. thou i knew it wasn't the problem I bought a new ignition coil, bosch blue.. redone all the wiring and earhtpoints that has to do with the ignition and 123 distributor.. still dead.. did a reset of the 123.. no difference, tried to upload a new curve, still dead..

I can connect to it, the light goes to green on the distributor and it flashes green when I crank the engine, so it's not completely dead..

one thing that happend a few time while the engine was actually running, I couldn't turn it of whit the key, it just kept going... but I have checked the + side from the ignition like 100 times, when the key is turned of, there is no power in the cable. and I only have ignition + to the coil 15 the red from 123 connected to coil +15 the black from 123 to -1 on coil, the white tacho cable to -1 on the coil. The blue cable from the 123 goes to ground.

Does anyone have a clue to what's wrong? Have I got a bad 123 distributor?

Any ideas would be helpful!!!!




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I recently installed a 123 Bluetooth.
I remember that it is necessary not only to turn the body counterclockwise but also to push the finger as.much counterclockwise as possible.
The finger has some play, could be the reason why it posts past cylinder 1
That the drives are different is no issue, as long as you set it properly to tdc or timing mark and check if the ignition wires go to the correct cylinders.
1-3-4-2 is the firing order.
So if you are at tdc 1 is where the pointer points to, then clockwise 3 , 4, 2
Maybe you mixed up a ignition cable?

At my car (2000 GTV) the original distributor pointed to the water pump, the 123 to the engine block.

Maybe a previous owner assembled the oil pump 180 degrees off, this shouldn't be an issue as long as the firing order is correct, means ignition wires are in the correct order plugged to the distributor cap.

It could also be that you are 180 out with the 123, could you really completely push it into the oil pump drive?
Found it: read the first post in this thread about the 123 drive being ~20 degrees off. That may be your problem? This is definitely not common, though.

Should be no issue if the 123 (appearance of the Led) is set to TDC? and the ignition wires are connected correctly?
If it's off by 90 or 180 degrees then it's no issue provided you put the plug wires in the right place. If it's off by like 45 degrees it would be a problem, because the rotor would be too far from any of the wires. The latter is what appears to have happened in that other thread.

For curiosity: if thats the case the green light should not come on, right?
As this has to be tied to the #1 cyl position of the dizzy cap, which is tied by the groove in the dizzy housing so it has a fixed position?
I heard that a lot of the 123s werre failing, mostly when new.
Don't know if this is still true with recent productions so I'd suggest:
Check if the ignition wires are correct with firing order 1342

If they are, I'd try to mount the old Distributor again to rule out a malfunctioning 123
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