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Turbo-Triumph
06-27-2013, 07:48 PM
Ok so today i switched out the distributor on a 383. It used to have a lockedNow out dizzy, with a crank trigger magnetic pickup. Now, the new distributor (mopar performance vacuum advance) is in place, and "times in" correctly (1@tdc, firing at 1) this has been triple checked, lol.

The car has a msd6al box with the factory purple/green wires attached to the new orange and black wires of the new distributor (purple to orange, blk to grn, per msd schematic)

After the install i had no spark on #1, (checking with a know good timing light) so i clipped it on the coil wire... The coil wire seemed to be sparking "randomly", it took about 5 seconds of cranking, then it sparked "as ide expect it to, then stopped to briefly, then continued, but would cut out every so often. So, i double checked tdc@1 timing of dizzy, made sure the pickup was real close to the starwheel, checked the rotor was touching the tit on the coil plug on the cap, (even bent it up more, could feel it contact) made sure the rotor spun wuth the engine turning, double checked all the plug wires were clipped in, rechecked the distributor wires were making good contact.

Tried again with same results, only, i got 1 single lonley spark from the #1 plug wire.

Then i called my dad, lol. He said to check the timing again, chevk wires etc so did all that over (technically, im clinically insane at this point) and yet again same results.

I guess my question is... Its obviously timed correct, even if i was magically 180 deg off, it would still spark. Plus, i did get a few random sparks from randomly chosen wires. So... What should i look at next? The msd6al worked fine before, and the dist is brand new. I did loose the instructions though. What is the gap between wheel and pickup supposed to be? Anything obvious im overlooking?

My next step i guess thinking about it would be multimeter the negative side of the wire from distributor to ground, see if its actually the pickup or the msd box missing the signal somehow. Anything else i should check?

5hr distributor install... Longest instsll.... Ever...

Turbo-Triumph
06-27-2013, 07:57 PM
One thing i forgot to mention, i did briefly hook the wires up backwards from/to msd box. Could this damahe the msd box, or the pickup somehow?

Also sorry for typos and randomly placed words. Im on a cell phone and its impossible to put the darn type icon thing where i want it

bikedad
06-28-2013, 09:19 AM
You might want to have your MSD6AL checked.
I had mine rebuilt (by MSD) a few years ago due to inconsistent spark. I also replaced the coil.

Prince Valiant
06-28-2013, 10:06 AM
I would imagine you could be able to download new installation instructions from MSD's website so that you can go over step by step to make sure everything is as it should be right now, including also giving you the correct gap b/w the reluctor and mag sensor....giving everything the once over again may help you find/solve the problem.

Turbo-Triumph
06-28-2013, 08:17 PM
The msd box is old, but the car ran fine right before i fixed it lol.
i was just on their website, said its $50 to have it looked at roughly. Much cheaper than a new one though, for sure, if it comes down to it. Did they fix your problem with inconsistant spark? Symptoms sound similair?

Great idea with the pdf files, will do!

My phones on some bs so if i replied 3 times, lol sorry

bikedad
06-28-2013, 10:28 PM
Yes my problem was fixed with the refurb. They did some sort of upgrade. I'm not even sure what they replaced.
It was done about 4 years ago. The car has been running great since.

cyclone70
06-29-2013, 11:08 PM
My 6al was having intermittent issues of losing spark all together. Swapped the 6a back in hasn't missed once . Let me know if send yours to msd and how much it cost

DNT H8
06-30-2013, 07:55 AM
MSD tech support is great and will walk you through their trouble shooting step by step. BUT there is one one way to check the box yourself without sending it in, and that would only tell you if the box is sending spark at all. Can you drop another dizzy in to eliminate that? If you didn't cross any wires the issue would be easier to figure, but now you added a extra variable.

Korndogg
06-30-2013, 10:25 AM
http://www.msdignition.com/page.aspx?id=3206

I tried that first on mine, found out it was sparking just fine so then I went on and ohm'd out my coil and found out the secondary side is bad. I still need to throw in a new coil on mine to see if it is actually the problem but maybe that page will help you out some?

Prince Valiant
06-30-2013, 10:42 AM
On a related note, how is the rev limiter function on these boxes? Pretty reliable? Smooth in how it limits it?

Will be making the switch to MSD regardless...but I am curious as to how the rev limiter function will work, if it ever has to...

Korndogg
06-30-2013, 10:56 AM
I never had a pill in mine until this year so I'm not sure. In the future, I would like to get one of the dial controllers instead of just the pill so I can adjust it on the go if necessary.

Prince Valiant
06-30-2013, 11:02 AM
btw Mark, I've got a good MSD coil you can use if you'd like since I won't be using it...it's a known good coil.

The previous owner had a touch of mismatched parts...using the MP distributer w/ stock control box, stock ballast, and MSD coil...which the coil needs a different ballast, so I had to swap it out.

Since I had it dyno'd, I'll be interested in getting it dyno'd again with a performance ignition to see what kind of changes it makes...

Korndogg
06-30-2013, 11:29 AM
I actually found a brand new coil from when I bought the distributor. When I installed it, I just used the coil that came with the distributor and not the coil that I bought. Ended up being a good idea saving it in the long run lol. I just haven't had much time to be able to put it in and test it out yet.

Turbo-Triumph
07-01-2013, 07:22 PM
That link was helpfull, thank you.

Kind of leads me to believe i somehow screwed the msd box up somehow. I didn't try the jumper test until the very end when my battery was almost dead, but it didnt spark. I took the battery home going to charge it and try again tomorrow.

I also set the sensor as close as i could (paper thickness) away from the starwheel.

If i try the test again tomorrow and i get three same results with a Fully charred battery I'm going too see about borrowing a distributor if i can find one lol then i guess last thing will to bee buy a new box.i intend on going forced induction so I'll just buy one with boost retard and save myself a few bucks down the road.

This really sucks, ive had this car for almost 2 years and ive put maybe 10 miles on it, lol

Turbo-Triumph
07-02-2013, 02:00 PM
Figured out the problem

The dang ignition switch went bad and was only letting 8vdc to the msd box. Wow. Ran a wire straight fron battery just to check and now ive got good spark. didnt even question the 12v source initially, bc it was fine before. Just a bad coincidence The car still doesnt run lol its avting like its 180deg off but it isnt... Idk wtf im doing anymore lol.

Anyway just wanted to update. Think a few more tweaks and itll run fine. Not exactly sure whats going on but atleast it attemps to start again, just backfires thru carb and dies. Think i need more retard but idk should start... Its all setup tdc @ 1 on compression stroke... So zero advance... Getting frustraded but atleast im getting somewhere

bikedad
07-02-2013, 02:18 PM
Figured out the problem

The dang ignition switch went bad and was only letting 8vdc to the msd box. Wow. Ran a wire straight fron battery just to check and now ive got good spark. didnt even question the 12v source initially, bc it was fine before. Just a bad coincidence The car still doesnt run lol its avting like its 180deg off but it isnt... Idk wtf im doing anymore lol.

Anyway just wanted to update. Think a few more tweaks and itll run fine. Not exactly sure whats going on but atleast it attemps to start again, just backfires thru carb and dies. Think i need more retard but idk should start... Its all setup tdc @ 1 on compression stroke... So zero advance... Getting frustraded but atleast im getting somewhere

I'm assuming you're doing the basics?
Number 1 cylinder at top dead center on the compression stroke. (pull the valve cover and make sure both lifters are full up position)
If you're engine is degreed then the pointer should be at 0 on the harmonic balancer
Mark on the side of the Dizzy base where #1 wire is located with the cap on. Remove cap.
Install Dizzy into hole and make sure the rotor is pointing at that mark after it seats fully in to the engine. It will rotate about 1/4 turn for the gear and then you turn the rotor until the oil pump lines up with the drive under the gear on the Dizzy shaft. If it's not in the position where you want then with a long screw driver turn the oil pump drive to where the Dizzy lines up at wherever you want it to. (I like the #1 plug wire on the cap to point towards the #1 cylinder)
You should feel 2 distinct drops when it's in place.
Turn the base of the Dizzy to make the rotor and earlier mark on side of Dizzy line up. You will then be at 0
You should be able to start the car and have it idle smooth at this point. It will not accelerate well though. (Engine will need Advance)
Advance the Dizzy to your recommended setting. (my engine is 40 Advanced at 3000RPM for my cam setup)

Turbo-Triumph
07-02-2013, 05:25 PM
Yea, i figured out why it wouldnt start right after i posted. It would start then die right away. I moved the reluctor BACK away from the starwheel and it solved the issue. .008" was whay mopar reccomended but at higher speeds it didnt work.. I dont know, lol. Runs great mow. Didnt time it with a light yet, got a headache and took a nap. Lol

Thanks for the help!