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Old 10-11-2009, 05:31 AM
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Weird HEI distributor problem . no spark

I had bought one of those procomp distributors for my ford 400 a while back, it worked great and I loved the quality. Just recently bought one for a new 302 I got and it's much worse quality,.. and i'm getting no spark with it.

I exchanged parts between the working one and the broken one.. cap, rotor, coil, module and magnetic pickup.. there's a chance I broke the pickup when putting it in, as the wire came off when removing it a second time from the new dizzy, when i put the old one back in.

with the old one in, i tried jumping the car to get extra voltage to the dizzy (it would drop to 9v when cranking, I think it's an old starter), doing so got me 10-11v while cranking. I even tried running the +bat wire off of a running car to get extra voltage, still no spark.

I accidently found a weird issue though.. I don't have a tach hooked up and the tach wire was hanging, I accidently grounded it to my valve cover and the engine fired up (had a miss on a couple of cylinders) but it ran.

it would only start when the spark had to jump from the tach wire, if I hooked it up direct to a ground with no resistance, there would be no fire. It was a lively spark, like something you would see out of a spark plug. Does this mean a short somewhere? if so, where?

should also mention that the pickup coil wires were different colors, i think I read somewhere that they had to match the coil (and they havent since the original install)

anyone have any idea why this is happening? it makes no sense to me..

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Old 10-11-2009, 06:03 AM
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1.Don't ground the tach wire(bad)2 Hook a test light to the tach terminal then ground the other end ,turn on ignition should have light.3 have helper crank engine with test light hooked up should flash.Lets us know results of this test.
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Old 10-11-2009, 06:53 AM
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alright, ill try it

any idea on why the engine fires if I arc the tach wire to the engine block but not unless I do it? remember, it was an accident .. and i could theoretically arc the wire to start it every time i want to drive

thanks
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:09 AM
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The tach terminal is the negative side of the coil when grounded current flows thru the primary side when you remove it from ground primary current is interupted collapsing the feild in the primary side causing a spark just like when points opened a spark is created.I suspect your module has a bad ground.
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Old 10-12-2009, 12:35 PM
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I'm starting to wonder if the ground at the base of the distributor / to the gears is no good. I think I greased the gear with something electrically insulated. I'm going to try messing around with it and come back with results later.
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Old 11-05-2009, 12:48 PM
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whew.. thanks for trying to help everyone. My computer broke, right in the middle of school (going back to college), so this became the least of my worries. When I fixed my computer the guy I bought the dizzy from told me he'd just send me a new one, he did.. it was the better quality procomp one like I had in my f150 and it worked perfect.

Never did figure out what it was. I changed everything in the distributor and it never did work.
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