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Discussion Starter #1
Well I had my first (hopefully last) DOA while driving about 40mph. Car started and ran fine as usual for about 1/2 an hour.
On the way home, starting hearing a noise in the engine compartment like a low fan belt squeal? or similar. Noise was too quick to remember exactly, over in about 10 seconds.
After about 30 seconds later the car started to sputter and gasp like the air/fuel mixture was off or not existent. Did not get any acceleration at all. Well needless to say car died completely, lucky I was able to coast into a parking lot.

Someone following me said they saw some sparks coming out my tailpipe..:confused:

Had to have it towed home as I could not see anything evident right off initially to try and fix it there. No fluid loss, hoses all are snug, fuel pump fuse is fine, gas in tank is relatively new. Gauges were all within the normal range and the car still cranks.
I replaced the plugs/wires, fuel filter, fuel sender over a month ago but it had run fine up till now.

The only things I can think of are: Fuel pump or the AFM?

Can anyone think of any other possible causes?
Thanks, Steve
 

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Obviously you tried to restart the engine on the side of the road.
Squeel..
Since it would not restart.. Check the Distributor.. Remove the cap and see what you have. Fuel pump could be it .. Put 12 volts to it and see if it pumps, or get someone to crank the engine while you reach under and feel if it's running during the start mode.

Other things would be altenator.. water pump..a/c compressor.. but should have blown the belt... Cam bearings and main chain sproket bearing..main bearings..pilot bearing.. Probably Not..

Good oil level in the engine should prevent internal failures during steady cruse.

2 cents..
Stan
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies Stan and Tifosi. Dizzy looks good on the outside, haven't pulled it yet to look on the inside.

Did try to start it up a few hours later, but car justs cranks. Did notice however when key is turned to first position on the ignition I only get a 1 second "pffft" (hope that makes sense :)) sound from the inline fuel pump and that's it.

Can't remember but is the pump suppose to kick in at this first position or further into the ignition process as one turns the key? I definitely don't here that normal whining of the pump.
 

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Spray some starting fluid into your intake, that will eliminate the pump or injectors from being faulty if it still doesn't start...
 

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Did notice however when key is turned to first position on the ignition I only get a 1 second "pffft" (hope that makes sense :)) sound from the inline fuel pump and that's it.

Can't remember but is the pump suppose to kick in at this first position or further into the ignition process as one turns the key? I definitely don't here that normal whining of the pump.
That makes perfect sense actually.

When the key is turned from off to the #1/run position, there's a quick pulse through the coil which in turn fires a single pulse signal to the tachy relay back by the ECU to run the pumps.

With the engine not running, there's no futher signals to the relay and the pumps stop after something like a half second or so. (just a real quick burp is all you'll hear if everything is in order)

They won't start again until you turn the key to the #2/start position and the coil begins firing the plugs while the engine is cranking so that there's a more continuous cycle of signals being sent to the relay. (which is why the pumps and engine continue to run after you've started it and released the key back to #1/run position)
 

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When it cranks, does it sound diffrent like spinning faster or slower? Also might check if the crank sensor did not rub or something knock it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well had the wife crank the car up and as I hold the fuel pump can feel it turning through the entire ignition process. Doesn't mean its pumping sufficiently just that it is turning through the cycle.
Does the inline pump NEED the in-tank pump functioning in the "push/pull" relation in order to pump enough fuel up to the intake rail? Just thought it could also be a failed in-tank pump.

It did pull the distributor cap, nothing out of the ordinary there, copper leads looked OK. Rotor "looked" ok but I don't have anything to compare it to.


I did change the cap as I had another. Plug wires put in correct order and no rotation of the rotor. Same result, car just cranks.

Dave I thought about ruling out some of causes as you suggest, exactly where do I spray the starter fluid in the intake plenum?

TIA, Steve
 

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It's not a super clear picture, but it really looks like the tip of that rotor is utterly wasted.


Looking at the attached, there should be a brass bit simular to what's shown. (and it should have continuity to the part where the centerpost of the dizzy cap rides)

Red area is one type of rotor, green (including red) is another and dependant upon which specific year ignition you have. (likely what the red area shows if I remember right)
 

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exactly where do I spray the starter fluid in the intake plenum?

TIA, Steve
Yup, 'bout a 5 second burst of fluid into the throttle valve (be sure to have it set at wide open throttle, if not you'll just end up with a flightless butterfly), then stand clear while cranking. If it starts, you have a fuel problem, if not, you have ignition problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
It's not a super clear picture, but it really looks like the tip of that rotor is utterly wasted.


Looking at the attached, there should be a brass bit simular to what's shown. (and it should have continuity to the part where the centerpost of the dizzy cap rides)

Red area is one type of rotor, green (including red) is another and dependant upon which specific year ignition you have. (likely what the red area shows if I remember right)
Yep, Tifosi you're correct. Here's what I found down below the cap while looking around. The metal "T".... but it's not green and red! :D

I didn't pop the cap after I found this but:

1.) The rotor shouldn't turn freely now correct? If it does, is my distributor drive shaft trashed?

2.) If the rotor is stationary I can just pop on a new one...hopefully? I remember seeing on this bb that some rotors are glued on and a PITA to pry off.
 

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1) if the rotor turns freely, it could just mean that the rotor is broken. (there's a molded in step on the inside that can shear)

If the shaft turns freely with the rotor off, then you've got dizzy drive issues. (pin that holds the drive to the shaft likely sheared)


2) The rotor should pop straight up off with not a whole lot of resistance (read as "no levers or prybars involved')

Some came glued on from the factory, yes, (specific years/models I can't recall), but the odds of yours being (a) original, and (b) glued on by a service department or mechanic during a service where it got replaced are pretty slim.

That aside, if it does give you a great deal of difficulty, well, it's trashed anyway so it's not going to hurt to get after it with tools and just break it into pieces.

When you put the new one on make sure that it lines up with the groove in the shaft and that it's a match for the cap. (ideally you'd get a new cap and rotor as a set, otherwise there could be 'issues')
 

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If there's noticable play in the dizzy, it's probably time for a new one. Too much play = rotor rubbing on the inside of the cap = exactly what you just experienced. As soon as you mentioned the "low squeal" this started sounding really familiar to me, as the exact thing happened to me on my first Alfa.

-Jason
 

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I never have figured the glued on rotors which came on the Motronic series..same dizzie as the Ljets, Unless the rotor floats up at high revs and can crate a free spin, wabble or something. The little carbon center button is spring loaded to make good contact with the center of the rotor, but not strong enough to keep it pushed down. I noticed in the picture that the brass center of your rotor is worn and looks like it has had some serious contact with the carbon button. The T contact that came off your rotor button could have let go from excessive heat. Look at the original cap and see how the center contact button looks. It could be just too many years without attention and it finally let go. The distributors on the Bosch don't get much attention over the years. I have seen some pretty rusty inside. Some of the older dizzies had a little sponge under the rotor cap that you would put a drop or two of oil in, but the glue down rotors would certainly stop that.
Anybody ever lube their distributors on occasion? Spray on White grease?
Not on the rotor contact, but down inside.
 

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I put a drop or three of Marvel Mystery Oil in there under the rotor at least once a year. Even made a felt pad to stick in there to hold it as the dizzy doesn't/didn't have the sponge. (L-jet and Motronic EFI both have Motronic ignition ;) )

Never bothered with the actual shaft & bushings. (figured the oil drops up top and splash from the bottom would deal with that)
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the feedback Jason, Stan, Tifosi. I might just pull the entire dizzy and get it serviced as I'd hate to put in a new rotor/cap only to find out a few miles later that it was the shaft also. :eek:
 
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