Spark at only 2 cylinders

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Model T Ford Forum: Forum 2017: Spark at only 2 cylinders
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Barlow on Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 09:09 pm:

I have a car show tomorrow and my 21 touring runs like crap
I only have 2 cylinders running now. I had three this morning then it dropped to twowss
I cleaned the plugs1
I have power at the coils, I put new termina1ls in the coil box
I changed out the timer
I swapped out coils
absolutely no improvement
I have very little time on 4 coils from Ron Patterson so I don't know what the problem could be
I worked on it all day with no no improvement
I don't have a coil tester
what am I over looking


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Charlie B actually in Toms River N.J. on Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 09:34 pm:

Is there spark at the plugs on the cyls that aren't firing? Are they companion cylinders? What shape are the plugs in? More info needed.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Norman T. Kling on Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 09:39 pm:

Take out the coils and swap the coils which are on the cylinders which do not fire with coils on the other two cylinders. If the same two cylinders don't fire, but the two which fired before still fire, your problem is not in the coils.

Take a large screwdriver with an insulated handle and hold it up to the spark plug connection and the other to the head or the base of the spark plug. If this causes the engine to slow down, that plug was firing. Do this with each plug. If it makes no difference, that plug was not firing. Next doing the same thing hold the screwdriver about 1/16 inch from the wire connection on the spark plug. Do you see a spark jump? If you do, that coil is sending spark to the plug. If you do not see any spark, that coil is not sending spark to the plug. When you find out which cylinders are not firing, You can turn off the engine but turn the key to battery. you should be able to ground the small wire to each coil at the coil box. If you ground that wire to the chassis or body if you have a steel firewall, you should hear that coil buzz. If it does not buzz, you have a problem with the coil.

You can also swap the spark plugs around. If the misfiring cylinder goes with the spark plug, that plug is bad, but if the same cylinder misfires regardless of which plug you use, the problem is elsewhere.

The problem could also be in the timer. Remove the cap and clean out the timer and if it is a roller use some grease on the roller. If an anderson, use some of the special conducting grease on it, but if a brush timer, just clean and leave it dry. Check all wires between the timer and the coil box. They should have good connections and not be grounded anywhere including where they connect to the timer or by the timing rod.

You could also have a carbon trail in the wood in the coil box. If so, you need to rebuild the coil box.

Your problem could also be a blown head gasket and not an ignition problem at all. If you have low compression on two adjacent cylinders it could be due to a gasket leak. This problem usually happens on the thin part of the gasket between 1 and 2 or between 3 and 4.


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Garnet on Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 09:50 pm:

You didn't happen to install new copper contacts in the coilbox did you? If so - there's your problem. Ford made the originals of phosphor-bronze which retain their springy characteristics. If yours are indeed the crappy copper ones they work good briefly and then eventually flatten out and the coil(s) quits working.

Garnet


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Mark Barlow on Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 11:47 pm:

I swapped coils around and grounded the comutaters until I got them all to buzz
while running now I have spark to all cylinders but groundi g out the plugs 1 and 2 don't seem to have any affect but it I remove the plugs and ground the comutaters the plugs are firing
all the plugs are black after I cleaned them today and the tail pipe is black
it seems to idle ok now but it still runs the same while driving
maybe a couple of problems
carb and spark
I thunk I will check for an intake leak tomorrow


Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message  By Les Schubert on Sunday, June 18, 2017 - 01:08 am:

Mark
I had the chance to help fix what maybe is a similar problem today on another guys car.
#3&4 cylinders were not working, although 3 might have been.
Pulled the plugs and 4 was oil wet. Put in 2 new plugs. Still no power from 4. A vague noise associated with 4 valve chamber
Turned out # 4 intake adjustable lifter was spun right down with essentially no valve opening occurring. Reset the lifter, only to discover that the "jam nut" was split and was useless. Another fellow came up with a interim solution of wrapping and tying wire around the threads. The days activities were accomplished!!!
So something to check. Apparently those lifter lock nuts breaking is not that uncommon


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