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Old 09-25-2001, 05:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Last week before I cleaned out my carb my car went dead on me on the way home from work. I blamed the carb. I cleaned the carb, and the next day it happened again. I blamed the timing, which I knew to be too far retarded. I fixed the timing, and it didn't happen again. Until today. It has been nearly a week and I've driven the car almost every day. It went dead 7 or 8 times on the 15 mile trip home. No warning, I'm driving along and the next thing I know I'm coasting. I shift to neutral, and sometimes it lets me crank (restart) while rolling but most of the time (about 5/8) it makes me stop first. There were a couple more times I could feel the car starting to go, and I would feather the gas and keep it alive. When I could feel it coming it was very sudden, not a sputtering to stay alive running out of gas type feeling. I have not done anything to the car in the past week and it did not go dead on me the first time, then today it starts showing its *****. I feel lucky to just have made it home without having a wreck (imagine coasting to a stop on a 4 lane highway with no place to pull off and with cars behind you....not a safe feeling). I have been having a tapping noise from either the pass side valve cover or the fuel pump. Could the fuel pump be crapping out on me? I checked my fuel PSI a few weeks back and got 4.5 PSI steady at all RPMs. What gets me is it happens so suddenly. I either notice I'm slowing down and push the gas but nothing happens, or I look at my tach and see 0 RPMs. When it goes dead sometimes the warning lights come on immediately, and sometimes I have to slow to a stop first. When I put it in park it fires up first time no problem and the idle is fine.

What could be causing this? This car is a daily driver and obviously this kind of behavior is unacceptable. It can happen when I speed up, or when I'm slowing down, or when I'm just cruising along at a constant speed. I can rev the car all I want in park and do not go dead. Please help if you can
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Old 09-25-2001, 05:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Loose coil wire(s) does it for me.

J. Boggs
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Old 09-25-2001, 06:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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That sounds electrical to me. Perhaps the ignition switch or wiring is shorting between your key and the coil somewhere? Does the problem seem to correlate to bumps in the road or anything that could jostle wiring?

Jerry
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Old 09-25-2001, 06:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree with a loose coil wire (on the coil). Start the engine, let it idle and jiggle the wires. Do the same with the ignition wire.
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Old 09-25-2001, 08:16 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the advice I checked the wire that goes goes from the coil to the dizzy and it felt a little looser on the coil end than I would like. I used a flatheaded screwdriver to pry the prongs a little further apart to ensure a more snug fit. I also noticed the bracket that holds the coil to the intake was a little loose, allowing the coil to wobble back and forth. I also tightened it down. I drove about 5 miles to the store for gas and back and it didn't go dead the first time. I don't want to get my hopes up, considering it hadn't gone dead for the last week either until today, but atleast I *might* have fixed the problem If it happens again I'll repost. Thanks
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Old 09-25-2001, 08:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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My experience with loose wire from diz to coil was the car bucked a lot and the tach went from 2000 RPMS to zero and back.

However, how are the wire connections in the other parts of the ignition system?

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Dean T
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Old 09-25-2001, 08:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My (name omitted) truck pulled the same thing on me couple
of years ago, was the ignition switch itself.
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Old 09-25-2001, 08:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Most of the wiring appears to be in good shape, but to be honest there are parts of it I've never seen. I suppose it's possible that some of the under dash wiring could be shorting, I guess. I never had the problem with the tach acting strange, aside from an issue with a short in the 12V power supply (my fault, I used the cheap slide-in connector/splicer that came with the tach). I know that when I checked the coil the wire felt loose (it slid off without much of a fight) so I'm hoping that is the culprit. The wire is on well now, so if the problem continues I'll know to look elsewhere. I do still feel a little bucking at certain speeds or when accellerating slowly (the way most people accellerate). When I keep my foot in it the car seems happy. Thanks
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Old 09-25-2001, 09:21 PM   #9 (permalink)
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It sounds to me like you may have some crud in the bottom of the gas tank.
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Old 09-25-2001, 09:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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We had a 70 Mach 1 in the shop 2 weeks ago doing the same symptoms you describe and we finally traced to the solenoid switch. You could hit it while running and it would shut down.
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Old 09-25-2001, 10:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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This sounds very similar to the problem I am having with my 70 BOSS 302. I checked all the wiring, changed fuel filter, points, condenser,coil, I ran a hot wire to bypass switch, rebuilt fuel pump, etc, etc, etc,[IMG]/forums/images/icons/mad.gif[/IMG]. Good thing I own a NAPA store [IMG]/forums/images/icons/laugh.gif[/IMG]. So I figured I wasn't going to lose this battle, so I ripped the whole car apart. Guess I showed it who the real BOSS was! [IMG]/forums/images/icons/laugh.gif[/IMG] I think?!?!?!?
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Old 09-25-2001, 10:32 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Had an ignition switch do that to me once - Jiggling the key would make the engine cut out and sometimes die. If you continue to have the problem, you might try wiring a test light to the hot side of the coil thru the firewall and see if it goes out when the car dies. Might give you a place to start ...
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Old 09-25-2001, 10:33 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Hope you bought a ford after that
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Old 09-25-2001, 11:57 PM   #14 (permalink)
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This same problem happened to me for about a week with the convertible. It turned out to be the wire to the coil was loosing it's gripiness on the post and would pop loose enough to not make connection. I cut off the old connector, put on a spade, and never had a problem since (1 1/2 years).
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Old 09-26-2001, 12:00 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Beware! If the coil wire is not real tight on there, it is unlikely that bending it, squeezing it, or whatever will work for the long term. I tried that for 2 weeks before I finally got disgusted & cut the push on terminal off. Once these things get a little out of shape they're not so keen on staying put on the coil. I would either replace the harness wire or cut the connector off and put on a spade. Just my opinion
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