No power to coil & 2 condensers? - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 4th, 11, 09:03 PM Thread Starter
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No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Hey Guys, I've tried searching through the threads but every one I found seems to have power to the coil. My problem...I don't.

I just picked up a barn find 67 coupe with a 250 inline 6. I've got power going to the starter and it cranks over just great, but I've got no spark. I checked for power on the ignition side of the coil, and it's not there. To further complicate matters, there is what appears to be a 2nd condenser on the outside of the coil, which is also wired to the ignition side of the coil (although the wire has been broken off).

So that leaves me with a couple of questions:

1) Any thoughts why I'm not getting power to the coil?
2) What the heck is this 2nd condenser mounted on the outside of the coil? (I did take the distributor cap off and verify there's another condenser inside with the points)



As always, I greatly appreciate any help you can offer.

Thanks,
JB

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 4th, 11, 09:11 PM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

The condenser outside of the distributor is for radio static. It isn't needed to make the engine run. The quick and dirty way of making the engine run (temporarily) is to run a jumper wire from the + side of the battery to the small terminal on the coil that doesn't have a wire that runs to the distributor. This is just to see if the engine will run. DO NOT leave the jumper wire connected long or run the engine long using the jumper wire or you will burn up the points. This is for diagnostic purposes only.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 4th, 11, 10:33 PM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

You kinda have to trace the +coil wire back along its route checking at each connection with a test light and the key in the "on" position. That should be a resistor wire with a white cloth insulator - although 40+ years later it's probably not white anymore. Check it where it goes in to the bulkead connector under the MC, at the ignition switch, etc. You'll figure it out.

If original, you should also have a yellow wire at coil+. This comes from the "R" terminal on the starter solenoid and is hot only while cranking. If it's there, you should get the thing to fire while cranking, only to have it die when you release the key.


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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 02:49 AM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

A bad ignition switch can also cause this problem. Check the wiring then if doesn't show any power, try a new ignition switch. I think the ignition is about $10.00 at a local Autozone.

Kev
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 03:08 AM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Since it is a '67, not having ign power during the START position from the ign switch, and this is normal, I would check the solenoid connection of the yellow wire on the R terminal.

I see the yellow wire on the coil + terminal, but only one wire to the solenoid, the purple to S terminal. Yellow wire broken? I ask this because the picture looks original, nothing has ever been moved in its life.

Check to make sure you have ign power with ign sw in IGN position. Red wire to ign sw for battery power, out ign sw on pink wire to firewall, through firewall to cloth wire, white with purple stripe wire.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 07:49 AM Thread Starter
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dyno jonn View Post
The condenser outside of the distributor is for radio static. It isn't needed to make the engine run. The quick and dirty way of making the engine run (temporarily) is to run a jumper wire from the + side of the battery to the small terminal on the coil that doesn't have a wire that runs to the distributor. This is just to see if the engine will run. DO NOT leave the jumper wire connected long or run the engine long using the jumper wire or you will burn up the points. This is for diagnostic purposes only.
Thanks for this info! I'll try this just to see what happens. Regarding that condenser for radio static, can I use a "regular" condenser (like for the points) to replace it, or is it some type of "special" condenser? I realize it's not required, but I'm going to try to make this car as original as possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SixtyAte View Post
A bad ignition switch can also cause this problem. Check the wiring then if doesn't show any power, try a new ignition switch. I think the ignition is about $10.00 at a local Autozone.

Kev
I woke up at 3:00 a.m. realizing I left out a very important piece of info from my original post. When I say the engine turns over but doesn't start, I'm actually turning it over with a remote starter connected to the solenoid...the engine will NOT turn over using the ignition key. Might this further support the idea that the ignition switch is bad?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Everett#2390 View Post
Since it is a '67, not having ign power during the START position from the ign switch, and this is normal, I would check the solenoid connection of the yellow wire on the R terminal.

I see the yellow wire on the coil + terminal, but only one wire to the solenoid, the purple to S terminal. Yellow wire broken? I ask this because the picture looks original, nothing has ever been moved in its life.

Check to make sure you have ign power with ign sw in IGN position. Red wire to ign sw for battery power, out ign sw on pink wire to firewall, through firewall to cloth wire, white with purple stripe wire.
Everett, please see my reply immediately above. And yes, the yellow wire that is connected to the + side of the coil is broken off that 2nd condenser. But there are two wires (including that yellow one) on the + side of the coil. With my latest information, do you also think it's likely that the ignition switch is bad?

Also, I'm sorry but I must admit my ignorance, what exactly are you referring to when you say "the R terminal"?

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 08:38 AM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Quote:
Originally Posted by edhjohnb View Post
I woke up at 3:00 a.m. realizing I left out a very important piece of info from my original post. When I say the engine turns over but doesn't start, I'm actually turning it over with a remote starter connected to the solenoid...the engine will NOT turn over using the ignition key. Might this further support the idea that the ignition switch is bad?
Maybe, I did not see trans oil lines going to the radiator nor did you mention automatic or standard trans. If auto, start signal goes through the neutral safety switch, either at the firewall on top of the steering column or, if console equipped, mounted on the side of the shifter. Purple from ign sw to N/S to firewall to solenoid. Or if standard trans, purple wire from ign switch to firewall to purple on solenoid S terminal.

Quote:
Everett, please see my reply immediately above. With my latest information, do you also think it's likely that the ignition switch is bad?

Also, I'm sorry but I must admit my ignorance, what exactly are you referring to when you say "the R terminal"?
Solenoid R terminal is ign power during cranking, i.e., starter engaged via the solenoid being energized and transferring power from battery cable to yellow wire only in start position. Use some BraKleen to clean end of the solenid and you should see R & S on the end. Might need a magnifying glass, I do.

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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 09:21 AM Thread Starter
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Geez, I've been doing this long enough you would think I'd learn to put more info in these posts! The car is, in fact, a manual transmission so there's no neutral safety switch.

I'm going to try to run a jumper from the positive side of the battery to the + side of the coil and see if I get spark. If I don't, and because the car sat for so long, is it possible that I need to replace the points to get spark?

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 08:01 PM Thread Starter
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Well, good news...I got the old girl started!

But it wasn't easy...I used the jumper from the positive side of the battery to the pos side of the coil, then checked for continuity on the neg side and it was there. But still no spark. Based on what had been posted in this and other threads, I figured it must be the points, so I replaced them and while I was at it I replaced the condenser, rotor, cap, plugs, and wires as well. That gave me spark but the car still wouldn't start.

I then drained the gas tank of all the who-knows-how-old gasoline, put in fresh gas along with a cleaner, changed the fuel lines and the fuel filters, and voila...she fired right up!!!

I was so excited I forgot to make sure there was enough coolant in the radiator so it started smoking before I had to shut it down. Once I filled the radiator, she ran great with no noticeable smoke.

So I bought the new ignition switch and I'll install it this weekend, so hopefully that will give me spark to the coil. It's great to see this old barn find actually fire up after so many years in deep sleep.

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 5th, 11, 08:30 PM
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Cool!

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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old Aug 6th, 11, 07:45 AM Thread Starter
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Re: No power to coil & 2 condensers?

Forgot to say "thank you!" to all those who posted suggestions for me!

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