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Old 09-10-2006, 12:13 PM
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Replacing Dash Wiring Harness Help ?

I'm replacing my wiring harness which includes the fusebox on my 1964 Impala SS.

Setup: Running points with after market coil (resistor).

Problem: Ignition switch not getting juice.


Conditions:
1. I am getting juice from the iginition directly from the fusebox.
2. I am not getting juice from the actual ignition switch "hotwire".
3. I'm not getting juice from the hotwire coming from the coil/resistor wire
running to the ignition fusebox.

Note: Previous owner had a kill switch, which I removed.


Questions:
1. Is it normal for the resistor to heat-up after connecting the battery.
2. When the battery is connected, should I see juice coming directly from the
the coil or resistor positives?

Current Wiring Setup:

From Distributor To: 3 wire harness

Brown to ground
Red to coil (positive)
Green to coil (negative)

From Resistor:

yellow hot wire directly to fusebox ignition
black wire directely to coil negative


Any suggestions be greatly apreciated.. Thanks in advance.....

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Old 09-10-2006, 02:38 PM
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Ignition switch should always have power

Ballast resistor should only warm up with the key in the run or start pos.

If I understand correctly---the black wire should go to the + on the coil

- on the coil will go to the dist.

And I only have one wire from the coil- to the dizzy on my 66 Elky

Bryan

ps might not be a bad idea to locate a wiring drawing for that car.
Doc may even have one, If I had one I would send it to you. I only have one for a 59-----that may be helpful but I know for certain it won't have Acc. and the connections are in a different spot.

Last edited by Bryan59EC; 09-10-2006 at 02:41 PM. Reason: Add a statemnt
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Old 09-10-2006, 05:11 PM
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Follow-up

I will acquire a wiring diagram, you're are correct on the "black" wire coming off of the resistor, it does goes to the + on the coil, I made a mistake when I posted the first time. To be continued! Thanks!
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Old 09-10-2006, 05:15 PM
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Doc here,

Your Ignition Switch should have a wire (probably purple) to it "Hot At All Times" This should have power 24 / 7 ...from the fuse link (Pre~70 Vehicles did not have them factory installed, however many were upgraded over the years, check yours)

The Ignition Buss will have power ONLY when the switch is in the "RUN" position..The Switch buss will become active as well as the power to the ballast resistor.

The Ballast resistor will HEAT as well as the coil, Anytime there is power AND Load to the coil..This means Not just "ON" but loaded..(points Closed) The points provide a direct ground to the coil winding, and the energy consumed during that cycle is transduced as heat..

If the Ballast is heating anytime the vehicle has the battery connected, then your Ignition is miswired..AND will result in dead battery's, Coil destruction, and Ballast resistor Burn out..To Verify, :

Get out your DVOM, Set it for DCV, V X 50 , or autorange, place your probe on the Non~Coil side of the ballast.

Next remove the cap, place a matchbook cover or other insulating material between the point gap..so the points aren't closed..(or set it for a high lobe).

Next turn the key on (or in your case , Connect the battery..) and monitor your readout. It will read 12 volts, Then turn the key off..It should read 000, If not, you have the coil + wired to a "Hot At All Times " Buss..you need to change that..

Next remove power, remove the insulator (close points) replace power, and monitor the meter, It should read 6 to 9 volts with power on, and coil loaded..This will verify that the coil and ballast hasn't burned up.

At this point, you need to find the "Hot in Run" wire from the Ignition..and move the ballast feed there.

Once you have that corrected, you need to do one more test..place your probe on the + side of the coil, turn the key on, (you'll read 6 to 9 volts OR 12 depending on how the points are setting at the time) THEN, have someone crank it for you..The voltage should remain around 11 to 12 volts during cranking..

If not, You then need to address the secondary Ignition circuit, This is the wire running from the "R" Terminal on the Solenoid, and carries current to the + side of the coil directly.

Be sure it is connected and working. (It may be the root cause of the coil hot all the time also..miswired at the starter to the "B" terminal...check that also!)



Sorry for the crummy drawing..Dying scanner! I'll try my new schematic software (If I can master it..) and edit it into the post later if you need it..

Doc

EDIT:

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Last edited by docvette; 09-10-2006 at 09:52 PM.
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Old 09-10-2006, 05:58 PM
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Follow-up 2

Thanks Doc! Wow! Being a novice at electrical, I see I have my work cut out! But I will run through all your procedures/tests, I'll have to purchase or borrow a dvom, and take it one step at a time! I'll repost with my results... Thanks for being very technical and detailed, its the only way to learn!
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Old 09-16-2006, 08:43 PM
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DVOM - Follow-Up ?

Doc, I did mange to locate the aftermarket coil wiring diagram for my setup.
The previous owner had a kill switch installed which I removed after replacing fuse wiring harness. According to the wiring diagram for the Mallory Promaster Coil, only one wire should have been running to the + side of the coil and not two as he had connected, the red (from the distributor - connector) was switch from the + coil to the resistor side along with the ignition wire.
After reconnecting the battery terminal, the resistor did not heat up (good sign), however I still did not get any juice to the switch.
I would like to proceed with your test with the DVOM, where do you recommend I purchase one of these devices and how much should I expect to pay on the average? Also does the resistor have a + and negative, or ?, in other words does it matter which side the wires end up on? I attempted to attach the wiring diagram to this note, but not sure if it is going to accept it.. Thanks!
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Old 09-16-2006, 09:17 PM
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Doc here,

To purchase a starter or novice type DVOM, go to the local rat shack, and pick up their $49.99 jobber..It a good starter and it won't hurt too much if you let the factory smoke out. If your a guy that settles for nothing less than a snap on tool where a craftsman could do the job , FLUKE has many selections to choose from starting at about $160.00

OK, on to your problem...

IF your running a straight point system with a performance coil (and nothing more) The EDIT diagram I drew will apply to your application.Follow it and all will be right with the world..

IF your not getting 12 volts to the switch..that's got nothing to do with the coil or ballast at all...as power comes from the battery..to the fuse link (if so equipped) to the switch directly, to the ballast, to the coil + ...

SO IF the ignition 12 volts is dead...you have a fuse link out (if you have one..pre 70's were not factory installed with them, but aftermarket upgrades do appear..)

OR the main feed line to the "HOT AT ALL TIMES" side of the switch that comes from the starter solenoid battery cable or horn relay, is not connected , broken or burned up.

That's where I'd be lookin'....

Does ANYTHING work when you turn the key to run? like wipers, radio , heater ? IF not , that pretty much confirms it..

To do a SHORT test, to see if the ballast , coil and distributer is correctly hooked up, remove the wire from the NON coil side of the ballast (the wire that gos back to the switch.) ad a jumper directly from the battery to the ballast resistor, crank it over, it should fire AND run, To stop the engine you will have to remove the jumper. IF it does, your switch, or connections to and from the ignition are in error OR bad.

A ballast resistor or any resistor for that matter has NO polarity..it cares not what side line or load goes on..All a resistor does is create a path of RESISTANCE to the flow to change to value of voltage or current (depending on how wired) Think of it as a valve the more you close the valve, the more resistance you add to the water flow the slower it goes..Electricity is no different.

Doc
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Old 09-16-2006, 10:00 PM
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Wiring Diagram

Doc, Thanks again for the DVOM info! Just curious, I see that my after-market coil diagram did attach as a file to this post, were you able to view it and comapre to your diagram? After comparing the aftermarket diagram to my current wire configuration, it matches to a "T". I presume your diagram is a more simplified version????
On your diagram, there appears to be a letter "t" next to one side of the coil, does that represent the positive side? Al
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Old 09-16-2006, 11:49 PM
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Doc here,

If your diagram matches the one you posted...you DO NOT have a points type ignition..it's ECM..(Engine control Module)

Quote:
Originally Posted by docvette
IF your running a straight point system with JUST a performance coil (**-->and nothing more<--**) The EDIT diagram I drew will apply to your application.Follow it and all will be right with the world..
DO YOU HAVE:



A SET OF THESE?

OR:

SOMETHING SIMILAR TO THIS?



IF you do not know for sure , pull the cap and rotor and take a photo of it and post it here...

The diagram I drew is a STOCK GM diagram for any GM vehicle with a points type ignition.

IF you INDEED have a STOCK points type GM Compatible TYPE Distributer, and ONLY the coil has been updated..Then it will apply...

NOTE:
Quote:
Originally Posted by docvette
To do a QUICK test, to see if the ballast , coil and distributer is correctly hooked up, remove the wire from the NON coil side of the ballast (the wire that goes back to the ignition switch.) add a jumper directly from the battery to the ballast resistor, crank it over, it should fire AND run, To stop the engine you will have to remove the jumper. **-->IF it does, your switch, or connections to and from the ignition are in error OR bad.<--**



IF you have something different, (like an ECM) then none of it will apply..you need to contact tech support for each manufacturer of each part and find out how each individual part connects to the next OR if it is EVEN compatible..then draw a schematic based on their information and apply it to your car..

IT sounds like someone has really hacked the electrical up..you may want to consider scrapping the system and replace with a Ron Francis or similar type system...As well as a single system Ignition..like MSD..

The "t" on the coil on my drawing is electrical notation for a Coil "TAP" and is the - side of the coil..the + side of the coil ALWAYS gets the ballast..

Doc
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Last edited by docvette; 09-17-2006 at 12:10 AM. Reason: Link repair
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Old 09-17-2006, 01:25 PM
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Electronic System Type

After further review, it appears both the coil and distributor have been both upgraded, both the coil and distributor are Mallory, the distributor is labeled: Unilite Electronic Ignition System. I believe that eliminates the points!
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Old 09-17-2006, 01:36 PM
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Distributor System

Coc, I guess i was assuming that the unilite electronic ignition system distributor does not incorporate point! I can pull the dist. cap and rotor and take pic if required. My camera batteries are charging as we speak!
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Old 09-17-2006, 03:10 PM
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Doc here,

Yup..Do that..

Electronic and points are apples and oranges..guessing will net you nothing..

Doc
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Old 09-17-2006, 09:25 PM
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And The Winner Is !

Doc, ok, here's what we have installed:

Mallory Unilte Electronic System Distributor with ECM. (please verify pics).
Mallory Masterpro Coil

It appears that the wiring diagram I posted early is the correct wiring configuration, that being said, what do you suggest from here?
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Old 09-17-2006, 10:36 PM
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Doc here,

Quote:
Originally Posted by docvette
To do a QUICK test, to see if the ballast , coil and distributer is correctly hooked up, remove the wire from the NON coil side of the ballast (the wire that goes back to the ignition switch.) add a jumper directly from the battery to the ballast resistor, crank it over, it should fire AND run, To stop the engine you will have to remove the jumper. **-->IF it does, your switch, or connections to and from the ignition are in error OR bad.<--**
Next if that tests true , measure the voltage WITH the key on at the ballast ignition wire that goes to the resistor from the switch..

It will read 12 volts if the system is working..turn the key OFF and it should drop to zero..If you haven't got your meter yet...hook a jumper straight to the horn...turn the Key on, and the horn will blow if you have power.

IF you don't have power there, follow that wire back to the ignition switch. be sure it is connected, not cut or burned up.

Find the wire that goes to the "HOT AT ALL TIMES" terminal on the ignition switch from the starter solenoid OR horn relay power terminal, and check it for 12 volts..if you have to use a light or the horn to test for power.

IF the ignition is hooked up as the drawing shows, and your not getting power at the ballast resistor..the ONLY place the power can be lost is between the system support buss wire (from the solenoid or horn relay) to the switch, AND from the switch to the ballast resistor..nowhere else.

Sounds like you have a bunch of HACKED wires..

Your system SHOULD look like this to operate..



with the unilite plug installed..print this out and use this to check for power ...sorry for the blurry copy..still learning how to use this drawing software..haven't figured out why it does that YET..

Note "A" in the drawing would say: 12 volts in run ..that is where you want to check for ignition power at the ballast.

NOte "B" would say, 12 volts in start..6 to 9 volts in run only..

Doc
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Last edited by docvette; 09-18-2006 at 05:00 AM. Reason: Cuz I can...So how ya like me now?
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Old 10-12-2006, 03:45 PM
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I'm Back!

Doc, You thought I gave up!? Sorry for the delay, just got back from vacation, and finally purchased a multimeter and learning how to use it! Back to the project, after speaking to the Mallory Tech Support, it was decided that either one of the the Mallory wiring installation configurations from either the Mallory coil or distrubutor would work, I've attached the wiring diagram that I currently working with.

So with that said here is what I got.

I did find that the two main wiring harnesses (lights and start-up) off of the fusebox into the engine firewall were crossed, and corrected that issue.

This is what I have now:

At the switch: battery wire is always hot
ignition wire is only hot when switch is in "On" position

At the fusebox: iginition only hot when switch is on.
battery only hot when switch is on.

Switch will still not turnover engine...

I ran a Mallory test on the distributor control module and it passed.
I also measured the the voltage with the key "on" at the ballast ig. wire that goes to the resistor from the switch, it read 12 volts and I noticed the resistor was heating up, but when I turn the key to the "off" position, the volts did not drop to zero, but rather the meter on deviating anywhere from 40 to 100+ volts on autorange.

Anymore suggestions????? Thanks..
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