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Join Date: Oct 2004
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Distributor Problems

Recently my car would have an ignition miss after washing, after inspecting the dist. cap it looked to have no cracks but it was showing its age - so I replaced the cap and rotor. Then my car began missing(bucking) under accleleration. I checked all the wires, took off the cap and the shaft the rotor sits on looked a little rusty so i cleaned it with an emry cloth. Problem fixed. Drove the car another 50 or miles over the next few days and the bucking under acceleration returned. Removed the cap/rotor, cleaned the shaft, rechecked the wires. Problem fixed. Drove the car this a.m. and the problem has returned. Sounds simple but i'm stumped. Any suggestions?? I ordered new plug wires from PP a few weeks ago and plan on installing them when they arrive....BTW is an '84 Carrera

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Last edited by 84CAB; 03-26-2005 at 12:37 PM..
Old 03-26-2005, 12:21 PM
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Systematic check must follow...

Simple things first....how tight are the ignition wires attached? Do a resistance check on each wire. Check the various sensors and grounds ( reference mark sensor, etc, etc).

Bentley or factory manual should give advice on "sequence" ......

Wil
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Old 03-26-2005, 12:39 PM
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Plug wires ara a good start.

The only problem is if you ordered new replscement Beru's you will not be solving your wet running ignition miss. Beru's are notorious for shorting when wet.

Joe
Old 03-26-2005, 12:58 PM
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Thanks, I'm not using Beru'si I went with Clewett Engineering Wires. After reading a few recent posts on these though I wonder if that was such a good idea.
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Old 03-26-2005, 02:12 PM
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I installed the Clewett ignition wires also (against the advice of my mechanic at RMG/Sunnyvale) and I have seen very similar problems afterwards. Each time the car gets washed, it won't startup again. When it does start, it's very sputtery.

Now I've noticed that when it rains, the car seems to sputter alot. After about 20-30 minutes it goes back to normal. This *never* happened before the Clewett wires were put in. So is it the wires or the distributor cap?
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Old 06-02-2005, 02:51 PM
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I had an 86 cab and so whenever I hear this kind of problem I chime in!!
If you have checked all that these other guys have suggested, try removing your distributor (mark which wires go where with tape).
DO NOT turn the shaft!
Check the bottom gearing for end play. There is an orange bushing there and there should be no gaps.
If in Doubt, post a pic here, it could save you alot of bother.
I did and it figured my problem after 2 months of ignition/fuel diagnostics and a reputable P- wrench who charged me $1000 for his time and told me I needed a valve job!

The symptoms are that it will run fine cold and even fine after sitting warm.
But take her out on a test run and she will buck and backfire under acceleration. Let her cool down and then she will start again fine!.
You may want to inspect the rotor and cap for wear as mine wore then destroyed a new rotor and cap.

It may not be this , but may be worth a try.
Good luck!
Ben
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Old 06-02-2005, 03:08 PM
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Ben~
I know this post is a little late... And you apparently sold the 86, but did you replace or rebuild your distributor? And did this solve the problem?
I ask, as I am having similar problems. I have either replaced, or tried swapping good parts from other cars to no avail.... The dist. is the only thing I haven't repalced...
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Old 10-10-2005, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by stlrj
Plug wires ara a good start.

The only problem is if you ordered new replscement Beru's you will not be solving your wet running ignition miss. Beru's are notorious for shorting when wet.

Joe
Uhhh.....sure you aren't confusing Beru's with Clewetts?????
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Old 10-10-2005, 10:55 PM
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Does your distr. shaft have play?...i.e., able to move it side to side.

You installed a new cap, right? What is the condition of your new cap now?
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Old 10-10-2005, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by kqw
Does your distr. shaft have play?...i.e., able to move it side to side.

You installed a new cap, right? What is the condition of your new cap now?
Slightly side to side~ Maybe 1/16" photo's below show new cap & rotor wear after maybe 3k miles....







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Old 10-11-2005, 01:35 AM
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Yea, Looks like your rotor is jumping around because of the play in the distributor shaft. It will eventurally get worse and destroy the rotor and or cap.

Time to rebuild it or replace it.

Cheers....
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Last edited by kqw; 10-11-2005 at 08:06 AM..
Old 10-11-2005, 08:04 AM
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Thanks Fox~

I took the cap off again, and there is just a slight amount (1/16th) play in the shaft... The only 2 things left that haven't been swapped or replaced, are the distributor, and the eninge wiring harness..
Our host, has an unbelievable deal on rebuilt dizzy's, so I ordered one today.... I will post my results as soon as I install it.
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Old 10-11-2005, 12:13 PM
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Excellent...

You may want to look at replacing that cap and rotor...however...Install the dizzy and see how it runs....You may be fine...But......
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Old 10-11-2005, 03:37 PM
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cap & rotor will be new as well....

may be fine but.... but what????
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Old 10-11-2005, 03:43 PM
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The "but" was a:

"while you're in there, I'd replace the cap and rotor"

Looks like you have it covered.....

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Old 10-11-2005, 03:56 PM
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