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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just completed the teamrush upgrade on my 72 Commando with a 304. When I tried to turn it over it clicked (sounded like the starter solenoid) and is now completely dead.

Here is what I installed; a reman distributor from a 79 360, an MSD TFI coil (P/N 8227) and an MSD 6A box. I used the MSD wiring harness 6A to TFI coil (P/N 8874) and the MSD adapter from the dist. to the coil (P/N 8869). The cap is the MSD cap-a-dapt kit (P/N 8414). The plug wires are MSD universals (P/N 3122). I used the coil wire from this kit.

I followed the diagram Teamrush posted on 1/14/02 (http://bbs.off-road.com/wwwthreads-uploads/9-650800-jeepMSDNon.gif). However I did not ground the distributor. Did this cause it? Where do I connect the ground wire on to the dist?

Connections were as follows. Dist to coil with the MSD adapter (8869). Coil to MSD box with harness (8874). I connected the heavy red from 6A to positive battery post and the heavy black cable to the neg. battery post. The small red wire from 6A to the ballast resistor for switched power. Then the black and orange wires to the coil via the harness #8874.

Trouble shooting (very limited skills here...so far)
I checked the battery. It had 12.2 volts. I also found that I had switched power at the ballast resistor. I checked the connections several times prior to starting it as well as after. All connections were correct (I think). All these parts simply plug in so it seems (Seemed) simple enough.

What would happen if I installed the dist. 180 degrees out? Do I need a different solenoid? How do I check to see if it was the solenoid? Which solenoid should I use?

I just (appx. 30 min later) checked for power and found that I had no power for any accessories (ie fan motor, lights). At that same time I checked the battery again. It still had appx. 12.2 volts. It has to be the solenoid, Right?

Sorry this is so long but I was trying to check on everything while I was writing this.

Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Soon to have an upgraded MSD/Duraspark Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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it sounds like your battery may have drained. You can screw up your distributor all you want and your motor should still turn over. You may have shorted an ignition wire out somewhere. Even though your battery still has 12 volts, it might not have any cranking amps available for you.

Your electrical systems such as fan, radio, etc, do not pass through the solenoid, but connect to the battery power on the same post on the solenoid.

Mark
83 CJ-7 and 76 CJ-7 with stuff
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sloop thanks for the reply.

I fiddled with it some more tonight. The battery is still 12v. I noticed that the alt. lite in cab would come on when I checked the voltage in the battery. It seemed like I could toggle the lite on and off by breaking the circut with the battery and then touching it again. (IE when I touched the probes of my multi tester to the battery the lite would go on and stay on even after taking the probes off. If I touched the probes to the battery again the lite would go out. I tried to start the Jeep while the lite was on once and the solenoid clicked. It looks like I've bought a new solenoid either way or will it click when the battery is low and has no cranking amps?

I still need to find the source of my problem. I checked the switched red wire and found that it was getting 12v.

As far as the cranking amps I assume I can check them with the multi tester and have somebody crank it over, right? I will take the battery and have it charged/checked in the morning.

Thanks for your help.
Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Soon to have an upgraded MSD/Duraspark Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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I just completed the teamrush upgrade on my 72 Commando with a 304. When I tried to turn it over it clicked (sounded like the starter solenoid) and is now completely dead.

*Here is what I installed; a reman distributor from a 79 360, *

Good job, exactly what you needed.
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*an MSD TFI coil (P/N 8227)*

Excellent choice! A crap load of bang for the buck!
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* and an MSD 6A box.*

Another stellar move! Just as good as it gets!
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*I used the MSD wiring harness 6A to TFI coil (P/N 8874)*

Unless you just cut the coil plug off the end of the harness, you just screwed up....
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*and the MSD adapter from the dist. to the coil (P/N 8869).*

Exactly correct, and a dandy way to do things!
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*The cap is the MSD cap-a-dapt kit (P/N 8414).*

This is the correct kit for the distributor you are using.
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*The plug wires are MSD universals (P/N 3122). I used the coil wire from this kit. *

I didn't look them up, but it sounds correct off the top of my head...
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*I followed the diagram Teamrush posted on 1/14/02 (http://bbs.off-road.com/wwwthreads-uploads/9-650800-jeepMSDNon.gif).*

You DID NOT follow the diagram I posted, because there is not one mention of harness 8874.
That harness (8874) is only used on emissions controlled FORD VEHICLES...

Show me where I posted to use #8874 on this diagram...


All you needed is the little two wire coil connector...

I hate to guess where you may have the other six wires hooked up...
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*However I did not ground the distributor. Did this cause it? Where do I connect the ground wire on to the dist?*

No distributor ground wire needed for this application.
Don't worry about that ground.
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*Connections were as follows. Dist to coil with the MSD adapter (8869).*

Correct. You are not using any of the stock ignition system.
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*Coil to MSD box with harness (8874).*

WRONG!
The only connector you need other than the one you listed above is the little two wire connector to the E-core coil.
The module small black wire to the negative side of the E-core coil.
The module orange to the positive side of the E-core coil.
No extra harness needed.
Stick to my diagram, you will be fine...

Who talked you into buying that (8874) harness anyway?
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*I connected the heavy red from 6A to positive battery post and the heavy black cable to the neg. battery post.*

Good man!
Most people think they can outsmart the MSD engineers and connect where ever they damned well feel like....
(especially the ground)
That makes for some interesting calls to the Tech line...
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*The small red wire from 6A to the ballast resistor for switched power. *

This is correct.
Connect it to the wire that used to connect to the positive side of the old coil.
Make sure ALL of the wires that were connected to the positive side of the coil are there...
Or run a wire from there over to the 'I' terminal on the starter solenoid.
(There will be an 'I' & 'S' terminals.)
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*Then the black and orange wires to the coil via the harness #8874.*

Where did you connect the other four wires in that harness to?
And if you are not using it (and you shouldn't be), want to sell it!?
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*Trouble shooting (very limited skills here...so far)*

*I checked the battery. It had 12.2 volts.*

*I also found that I had switched power at the ballast resistor.*

So the positive side of the circuit is getting through.... (the plot thickens...)
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* I checked the connections several times prior to starting it as well as after. All connections were correct (I think). All these parts simply plug in so it seems (Seemed) simple enough.*

If you 'Assume' anything, you make an 'Ass' out of 'U' and 'Me'. Assume nothing, double check everything ...
----------------

I'm going to re arrange the post a little from here down...
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*I just (appx. 30 min later) checked for power and found that I had no power for any accessories (ie fan motor, lights).
At that same time I checked the battery again. It still had appx. 12.2 volts. It has to be the solenoid, Right?*

WRONG!!
Your battery isn't discharging any farther, so you don't have a directly grounded circuit...

Just because you have positive power, doesn't mean you have a completed circuit...
Sounds like your ground cable to the body has gone to the happy hunting ground.
The 50 amp draw a MSD module can suck will test marginal wiring in short order.

Run a jumper cable wire from the negative terminal to a starter bolt, and a 10 Ga. wire from the battery negative terminal to the starter solenoid bracket, being sure to clean all the rust off...
See what you get for cranking power then...
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*Sorry this is so long but I was trying to check on everything while I was writing this.*

That is exactly what you soul be doing, so don't apologize...
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*Do I need a different solenoid?*

I wouldn't think so unless the low power problem let the solenoid 'bounce', and that will carbon up the contacts in a hurry. (you know, that clicking or buzzing sound when you hit the key...)
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*How do I check to see if it was the solenoid? *

Use your jumper cables and jump over from one large terminal to the other large terminal...
Be prepared for lots of sparks, and make sure the vehicle isn't in gear!
The engine will crank like mad if the solenoid was bad...
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*Which solenoid should I use? *

Stock replacement from any auto parts store.
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*What would happen if I installed the dist. 180 degrees out?*

Wouldn't affect the start circuit one little bit, the engine would crank like mad.
The engine would sputter, back fire through the carb, and wouldn't run.

If you want to check it, take out the #1 plug, crank the engine over until the compression stroke on #1 starts, then use a socket on the crank bolt...

Use a wooden dowel rod or chop stick in #1 plug hole, and feel for the top of the piston.
Turn the engine over by hand until the piston comes up to TDC (Top Dead Center)
See if the mark on your balancer is at the '0' (zero) mark on the timing tab.

If it is, the balancer is correct, and you can set your timing by it.
If the piston is at TDC (via the chop stick), and the balancer mark is anywhere but at '0', you need a new balancer.

Find the #1 plug wire on the distributor cap, and make a mark on the distributor housing under the tower with a black marker.
With the piston in the #1 cylinder at TDC (via the chop stick), the rotor should be pointing (within 1/4" either way) of the #1 plug wire tower on the distributor cap.
I prefer to see it a little past the tower in a clock wise rotation. (about half a blade width is best)

You can take a cheap Ford V-8 Distributor cap (for pete's sake don't cut a hole in that MSD cap!) and cut a hole in the top between the #1 terminal and the coil wire terminal, and use your timing light to see where the rotor actually winds up when you time the vehicle...
This is a real eye opener for someone that doesn't understand the concept of vacuum advance and centrifugal advance...
Watch the rotor and rev the engine!

Post back early in the morning tomorrow, And I'll watch for your post, let me know how it's going...
Aaron.

So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Teamrush,

Thanks for the help. Sorry I have not gotten back to you earlier. I spent the morning at the vets office with my dog, and came back alone.

I screwed up with the 8874. I did not connect the other wires on the 8874. I thaped over them. I thought the other wires were used if/when I installed the Duraspark box as a back up (I have decided to keep the Delco instead). Send me your address ([email protected])and I will send the 8874 to you. It is the least I can do.

I will try to work on it some today or tomorrow. I can't promise when I will get back to it. I will bring it back to the top if I haven't heard from you.

Thanks again
Scott



'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Soon to have an upgraded MSD/Duraspark Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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Man! Sorry to hear about your dog...
I'm a dog person too.
I wouldn't know what to do with out my little fat Jack Russell... He's more of a family member than most of my family members...

(But the thought of cats in the same bag with high explosives makes me smile! Am I a bad person...?)

YUP, you just needed the coil connector.
If you want to wire in a stock DuraSpark module for a backup, that's a pain in the butt,
I'll help you with it though...
I have a real good factory style wiring harness here with all of the correct connectors for about $65, but if you send me the half of the harness you aren't using, I'll work with you on the price too.

Don't get me wrong, I'll help you either way...

Let me know what you want to do.

So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Teamrush

I ran my jumper cable from the negative terminal to the starter bolt and then connected the starter solenoid bracket to the negative battery terminal with the 10 ga. wire. I tried to start it and the solenoid clicked. (I couldn't check cranking amps as no one else was around).

Then I checked the solenoid by connecting the large posts to eachother with my jumper cables. Tried to start it and nothing happened not even the click.

I tried this prior to getting the battery charged/checked. The battery is still reading appx. 12v.

Also re: 8874 is there a reason that I can't use the tfi coil side of the 8874 since I have that. I could easily separate the other side of the harness from the stuff I need to keep.

Re: duraspark backup. I think I am going to keep the delco and the other coil for backup. This wiring stuff is not my strong point

Thanks for all of your help.
Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Soon to have an upgraded MSD/Duraspark Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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Since you jumped the solenoid, and still got nothing, it's either the Battery, battery connection or the short battery to solenoid cable.

Try the jumper cables again.
Drop the battery cable terminals entirely, and connect straight to the battery posts.
Hook the negative cable to a starter bolt, and the positive cable to starter side of the solenoid.
If it cranks, it's the battery to solenoid cable, if it doesn't, it's the battery...

Most of the auto parts stores will test your battery for free, volt and load test.
Load testing is the ONLY correct way to test a battery.

So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
A WHOLE NEW CAN OF WORMS!!!

TeamRush...some good news and some bad news.

Good news first
I took my battery to Schucks for testing and they said the battery was no good. They told me that it would test good then bad. They replaced my battery. I put it in lined up the marks on my dist and it fired right up. Ran great solved several problems that I had attributed to the carb. Drove it for appx. 20 mins and was on for total of appx. 30 mins.

Bad News
Got it home and turned it off. Sat for appx. 3 minutes and tried to restart it and the engine dragged and would not start. I stopped cranking before I completely drained the battery.

I upgraded my charging system to a reman Delco Alt from a late 70's chevy V-8. The local starter repair shop wired it in for me. I do not know if it is right but looks correct based on past posts.

I plan on taking it to the starter shop tommorrow to check it out.

Do you have any suggestions on what might be draining the battery.

Also thanks for all of the help with this install. I can tell a big difference in the way my jeep runs already. I am very glad I did your upgrade.

Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Soon to have an upgraded MSD/Duraspark Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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UNHOOK YOUR BATTERY!
Don't let it drain like the other one did...

If you suspect the alternator, I suspect the alternator....

Do you own a multi-meter or know how to use one?

So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The battery tested fine but needed charged. I do own a multitester but have very limited knowledge of it.

Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Teamrush/MSD Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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Turn it to DCV and test the battery.

Hook up the battery and start the vehicle. Jumping it is just fine.

Test the battery with the engine running.
If the battery voltage has gone up, the alternator is putting out.
If the voltage is the same or lower, the alternator is not working.



So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Alt. seems to be working . 12.5v battery unhooked. 14.8v started.
That was my guess. Where should I go from here.

One of two things is happening. I have discovered a problem that I have always had but upgrade just made it worse by using more power. Or I did something wrong on the install. Where do you suggest I go from here.

Scott

What could I look at that may be

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Teamrush/MSD Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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Start like this...

Unhook the wires from your alternator, and watch the multi-meter.
If the voltage doesn't drop after you unhook the alternator, it's the alternator.
(that includes the heavy wire on the back of the alternator)

If the voltage continues to drop with the alternator unhooked, it's not the alternator.

Check the small red wire to the MSD box.
Is it getting voltage with the key off?
If so, that MSD unit will drain a battery in a hurry!

If the small red wire isn't getting voltage, or you have the MSD unit unhooked and the drain is still happening...
Try this...

Unhook the negative terminal from the battery.
Negative battery terminal completely clean.

Hook your volt meter up to the battery negative terminal, and the negative battery cable.
See if you get a reading of a volt or more.

If you get under a volt, it's probably just the memory in the stereo or clock.
If it's over a volt, or like a full 12 volts, it's something still 'ON'...

Try pulling fuses, one at a time until you find the fuse that stops the heavy load on the battery.
That will give you an idea of where to start looking...
(I once found a penny in a cigarette lighter socket that was killing the battery in one of our tow vehicles... Drove me crazy for two days trying to find it!)

Let me know what you turn up, I'll be gone for a few days, but I'll check this thread when I get back, and before I leave...

So many cats, so few recipes...
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have not been able to work on it much this week but I did leave the battery hooked up and it starts quickly each day. I think replacing the battery did it.

Thanks for all of your help
Scott

'72 Commando,
rebuilt 304 bored 30 over
4" Alcans,
Teamrush/MSD Ignition system (Teamrush upgrade from CJ board)
 

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Glad to hear it was only the battery!
Take the battery ground cable loose next time you weld!

So many cats, so few recipes...
 
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