39 Six will not start.

Val
Val Member

Hey gang, Ok my car suddenly will not start. I am getting fire to all the plugs. I have installed new plugs also. But I almost think I'm not getting fuel to the carb. I took the breather cap off held the choke butterfly open slightly with a small screwdriver. As pushing the gas pedal did nothing. I turned teh key and pushed teh start button. I think went over and I'm not really smelling fuel. I'll pull the line of the carb and see if fuel is pumping up to it. Being I'm getting fire to the plugs can I rule out ignition problem? Also, when checking for fire at the plugs it glowed orange. I am told blue is ideal. How would achieve blue? Ignition timing?

Thanks for any advice.

Comments

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor

    Orange or yellow spark usually shows it is weak. Check for full voltage at the coil. But don't just go by trying to short out the plug; remove the centre h.t. wire from the distributor, turn the key on, hold the wire half an inch from ground and flick the pints open - it should fire a good fat blue/white spark.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Geoff how would I flick the points open.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Ok today I did a check using no tester nut just taking a plug out and putting the plug on the head and firing the engine. It sparked blue. So, I think I can rule out coil, condenser. and points. It must be a fuel problem. I will try and add gas to teh carb and see if it lights off. I may have a bad fuel pump.

  • Lance
    Lance Member

    Val, it may be the fuel. If you using E-10 in your car then it's possible that you have a carb thats loaded with alcohol residue. Ran into this trouble a while ago and now it's pure gas -no more gas with alcohol. Might be worth a shot to look at your carb.

  • I'd just remove the carb gas pipe and confirm flow...pour abit of gas down the carb air intake ...if the car fires briefly then it's the carb has a blockage ...just have it rebuilt ...usually around $100...generally you rebuild the carb every 10 years cheers ken

  • Glowplug
    Glowplug Expert Adviser

    Val: Two ideas

    1. The needle/seat in the carburetor is stuck. ( remove the cover of the carburetor to check)
    2. The fuel pump is not pumping fuel. (The fuel pump has failed or the fuel tank is empty.)

    Recently, these three problems occurred when I tried to start my 1953 Wasp.

    Good Luck

  • Val
    Val Member

    So today, I pulled all six plugs and checked them. All give a white spark when I hit the button. So I can eliminate the ignition, I removed fuel line at the carb. I put pressure gage on. I have 3 pounds pressure coming from pump. That should be enough.

    So with that It something with the carb. Stuck float maybe. I will check it,

  • terraplane8
    terraplane8 Senior Contributor

    Must be a carb or fuel supply issue then.

  • Jon B
    Jon B Administrator

    Had the car been starting normally, before this happened?

    When you push the starter, does it seem to turn over as fast as in times past? Or was it "labored"?

  • Val
    Val Member

    It had been running normal for teh most part I say as a week before it was idling normal and then just shut down. It started right back up. It was a cold 5-degree day. We had a cold week like that with windchills in the negative numbers. But it ran fine since then. I went and got gas drove it home and parked it in the garage as always. Since it was cold, I put my oil pan heater on it. Next morning I came out and no go. It turned over normally until the battery ran down. I spoke with Doug Wildrick. He thinks that it's probably that my points are closed. I think he said turn teh ignition on and turn teh motor while watching and if they are taking something plastic and open them. Not sure what to do with the distributor cap at that point though. Since it will have power, I guess just tuck it up out if teh way. Maybe Geoff Clark will chime in and give me direction on what to do in that procedure. I hope. I wonder can I spin the motor while the ignition is off? as it turns the points should still open and close right?

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor

    You have already ascertained that you have a spark at the plugs, hence the points are opening and closing. Without being there it is difficult to make a diagnosis. However, if was running when you put it away last, and now will not start, something has changed. Perhaps the choke is not closing? Have you tried a puff of ether (Quick-start aerosol) down the carb? Put your hand over the intake, with choke open and throttle wide open, and check for vacuum. It could be something like a valve stuck open. Unlikely to be a bad rotor. My method of checking for spark is to remove the centre wire from the distributor, and wind the motor over holding the wire about 1/4" from the block, and it should fire a good blue/white spark across. If it is a weak spark, check the voltage at the coil, should be full 6 volts. If no spark, it is points, or rotor. Go back to basics - Is the rotor turning? If not, timing gear is stripped. Is there fuel in the carby? If not check fuel pump. Hope this helps. To answer your specific question on distributor cap, there is no power at the cap itself apart from the spark that comes from the coil and jumps from the rotor to the terminals. You cannot get a shock from the distributor body itself, so just lay the distributor cap aside, and manually flick the points open with a small screwdriver, and the spark will be generated by the coil .

  • Val
    Val Member

    Thank you, Geoff, for all your advice. I believe the choke to be closing as the butterfly valve on the carb is closed. I have sprayed a quick start aerosol in the carb but no dice. I will pull the high-tension wire and check spark that way as it very well could be weak from the coil. Is the rotor turning? I'll check that this morning. I am by myself so I will have to enlist help to put my hand over the carb while some hold the throttle open to start car. As well to hit starter button while I check points. Thanks again Geoff.

  • Rocket
    Rocket Senior Contributor

    You may want to check your timming your timming chain or gears my have jumped a tooth just a thought.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Geoff, so today I removed the High-Tension wire from the center of the distributor cap held it about a 1/4 inch away from the exhaust manifold and had my wife turn the key on. I got nothing. No spark whatsoever. I then had her hit the start button and hold it. The points did open and close and had a small spark each time. The rotor turns. From this I believe I have a bad ignition coil. I have a spare. I bought one at the National meet last year. I did find that on the high-tension wire that goes into teh coil, the brass end was broken and was green. I put a new brass end on teh wire. So tomorrow I am going to take both coils and put them on a coil test machine and see what I get.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Ok well, the coil test machine didn't work. So, I ohm it out, it seemed fine. But I have no way of putting a load on it and checking it. Anyway, I made a wire and ran it from my coil to the battery. Still no start. Today I took a voltage reading from the ignition wire to the coil. 5 volts. I think 5 should be good enough to fire off. I looked at my ignition switch and the connections are clean and tight. So, I pulled the distributor this evening. I'll check the condenser. After that I don't know what else to check.

  • lostmind
    lostmind Expert Adviser

    Timing gear? , Check compression.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Condenser test very weak on ohm meter. I'll replace that and see what happens. I'll have to get a new gasket for the distributor also.

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor

    Wait - how did you test the condensor with an ohm meter?

  • Val
    Val Member

    Yes and it didnt really move on the scale

  • Geoff
    Geoff Senior Contributor

    It should not move at all on any ohms range. If it does, and registers constantly, it is faulty. However, having said that, if you have an old fashioned analog meter, if you use the 10k ohm range and connect between the lead and the case, the needle should swing up slightly and then slowly return to zero reading.. If it remains with a reading it is faulty. Also some digital meters have a condenser testing scale, and this will give a readout of the capacity of the condenser.

  • Val
    Val Member
    edited February 11

    I used an analog meter, not digital. However, I have a digital I will check and see if I have that testing scale. But as stated it barely moved but didn't fall back. I have the distributer out of the car as I had to remove it to get the condenser off. So once the I get one and install it I will install distributer and reset ignition timing.

  • Any chance that spark plugs got fouled from being flooded and rendered useless? I fought this same thing years ago on 283 Chevy, cleaned and dried the plugs and still nothing. Some one suggested new plugs, I reluctantly put a new set in and fired right off and perfect. Also if you do have all the plugs out, spin the motor over several revolutions to dry out the cylinders if they were flooded. Wouldn’t hurt to check compression since your that far. Never know

  • Val
    Val Member

    I have put new plugs in. Waiting for a new condenser to arrive. I am fairly positive that is the issue. Spoke with Dr Doug, he agrees

  • charles4d
    charles4d Expert Adviser

    Check the ground strap from the engine to the frame make sure it has no rust

  • Adding my 2 cents: Your ignition switch could possibly cause intermittent problems. On old switches the internal contacts may not always touch. Vibration as well as where exactly the switch is positioned could lead to loss of contact.

  • Val
    Val Member

    Thank you all for your advice. NOS Autolite condensers arrived today. If that doesn't do it and I hope they do then I will check switch. I have checked ground strap and it's a clean connection.