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Dolfinz

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Get some Tarn-X, dielectric grease, rotary tool (Dremel) with a small wire cup brush.

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Here is a fusible link I replaced many years ago.

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I put it in some Tarn-X for less than a minute, rinsed, and beat the water out.

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Here is how the fusible link box looked when I took off the links.

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Here's how it looked after some work with the wire brush.

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I coated the terminals with dielectric grease and replaced the links.

Try that, and re-test.

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Ok, I cleaned the fusible link terminals, replaced the fusible links, replaced the white wire connection at the starter, replaced the positive battery cable and replaced the connections at the ballast resistor.  The voltages changed as follows.  Voltages under no load.  Battery 13.07, wht wire at flink 13.06, wht/red wire at flink 13.06.  Ignition switch on.  Battery 12.95,  wht wire flink 12.94, wht/red wire at flink 12.94, blk/blu at ballast 12.6.  Ignition switch at start.  Battery 11.25, wht wire at flink 10.9, wht/red wire at flink 10.4, blk/blu at ballast 9.1, coil+ terminal 7.5.  Coil wire at distributor seems to have decent spark as well as spark at the #1 plug wire but it's still not firing.  Keep in mind the engine was running without issue until we began troubleshooting the issue with the alternator not charging the battery when it was running.  All that's really changed is the new voltage regulator and ignition switch other than cleaning/repairing connections.  Looking for direction as to what to try next.

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Well, at least the voltages are looking like you should be able to run.

Are you sure you have fuel at the carburetors? Have you tried starting fluid? Can you make a video of the spark? (I did that once to figure out that I had a wonky distributor.)

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I'm certain about the fuel as I can smell it when I'm testing.  The engine isn't firing at all so I doubt starting fluid would help.  A video of the spark where?  Coil wire to distributor or #1 cylinder plug wire?  You don't think the drop in battery voltage when starting is significant?  If it maintained 12+ it would raise the voltages everywhere.  7.5vdc at the coil is acceptable?

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Place the end of the spark plug wire near one of the studs at the shock tower. Watch the video I made about a year ago. It turned out there was a lot of wobble in the shaft, causing poor sparking.

You expect a larger voltage drop during starting because the draw of the starter drops the voltage. For reference, on a good sized CAT generator with a 24VDC starting system, you can see the voltage dropping down to about 8 volts on starting. Of course that's an extreme example because the CAT 3516 is a 69 Liter diesel engine, so the starter is fighting against a lot of compression. However, the principle is the same.

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It's an EFI car right?

If you smell fuel you have a cracked fuel hose somewhere or the cold start valve is fouled up. You shouldn't smell fuel on the EFI, 1975 and up.

I would take a plug cap off a plug, stick an appropriate sized Phillips head screwdriver up inside and hold it close to some metal while cranking the key/starter over and look for spark jumping from the screwdriver to the closest metal bolt head you can find. Turn off the lights and you may see it without getting a shock.

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p.s. if I recall right it's a 74 260Z with carbs.  So many electrical problems it's hard to keep track...

Pull a spark plug and check for wetness.  With carbs, when you smell fuel it usually means that flooding/fouling has occurred.  Might be because you didn't have spark, maybe.  But even if you solve the spark problem, if it exists, flooding will still stop it from starting.

Edited by Zed Head
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Yes it's a 74 260z and the smog shi* was removed years ago.  Yes it has carbs and the mechanical fuel pump is going to provide fuel that I can smell as the air cleaner is off to facilitate the use of starting fluid should the engine fire.  I go back to the fact that the motor was starting and running fine 2 months ago outside the charging of the battery.  Now it won't fire.  I did have the choke partially on as well to ensure fuel getting to the carbs.  I have since shut it off.  I will let the motor sit and let the battery charge until morning as it's seen a lot of cranking due to all of the testing.  I will respond again after it has had time to rest.  As for the spark on the number 1 cylinder it is timely and consistent but I'm unsure if it is strong enough due to the voltage at the coil during starting.

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9 hours ago, Dolfinz said:

Yes it's a 74 260z and the smog shi* was removed years ago.  Yes it has carbs and the mechanical fuel pump is going to provide fuel that I can smell as the air cleaner is off to facilitate the use of starting fluid should the engine fire.  I go back to the fact that the motor was starting and running fine 2 months ago outside the charging of the battery.  Now it won't fire.  I did have the choke partially on as well to ensure fuel getting to the carbs.  I have since shut it off.  I will let the motor sit and let the battery charge until morning as it's seen a lot of cranking due to all of the testing.  I will respond again after it has had time to rest.  As for the spark on the number 1 cylinder it is timely and consistent but I'm unsure if it is strong enough due to the voltage at the coil during starting.

Before I shot the video I linked, my car was running fine. For whatever reason, when I flooded the car that's when the distributor decided to act up. I replaced the distributor, and the car has been just fine since. That's not what usually happens, but apparently, it can happen.

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Also, thinking back to my 73, it had a Crane ignition on it for around 13 years. One day I parked it in the garage, and the next morning it wouldn't start. Eventually I figured out the ignition was bad. I swapped to a ZX ignition before recently settling on a Pertronix. 

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1 hour ago, SteveJ said:

Also, thinking back to my 73, it had a Crane ignition on it for around 13 years. One day I parked it in the garage, and the next morning it wouldn't start. Eventually I figured out the ignition was bad. I swapped to a ZX ignition before recently settling on a Pertronix. 

Why did you go to pertronix from the matchbox?

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10 minutes ago, Patcon said:

Why did you go to pertronix from the matchbox?

The matchbox went over to the 260Z when the old one died. I still had a 240Z distributor in decent shape (going from the Crane to the ZX dizzy), so use what you have...

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I think it was zed that suggested the starting fluid so I gave it a try and sure enough the engine fired. So I figured it was out of gas; since my gauges don't work,  I figured it might need fuel.  So I went and got 5 gallons.  I can't figure how we drained the tank after the engine was rebuilt and 5 gallons overflowed the tank.  Any ways, with plenty of fuel I pulled the choke full on and she started and ran for a couple of blocks. I was about to try to get her up to 40mph but it sounded like someone dropped a box of wrenches in the motor and she stalled and wouldn't run any more.  So much for my engine rebuild. 

After 44 years I can't afford another rebuild.  I'm 63 and I wanted to leave this car to my Grandson for it to be his first car as it was mine after I got out of the Navy.  I'll do compression tests tomorrow but if it threw a rod I'm done.  My wife has been begging me to get rid of this car for 40 years and my working on it has nearly ended in divorce multiple times.  But, it's always been a love of mine.  Oh well. fate will be what will be.  I appreciate all the advice ya'll have given me.  It always has given me hope.  Unfortunately it appears this will be dust in the wind.

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Really sorry to hear about your engine, but there are a bunch of Z guys here in Phoenix and maybe we can help. [mention]Randalla [/mention] [mention]cgsheen [/mention] [mention]duffman [/mention]


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk Pro

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Unfortunately, right before I moved from Michigan to Phoenix this spring, I gave away a perfectly good L26 along with a few other engines.  It sounds like you (with help from other AZ people) need to first figure out if there is a mechanical failure with the engine.  Hopefully not, but these engines are really cheap to rebuild.  My Porsche on the other hand is at least 10 times more expensive to rebuild and much more likely to blow up.

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I appreciate the support and anyone that might be here in Phoenix willing to assist me would be greatly appreciated.  The main reason for my frustration is I just put out $3k to get this engine rebuilt.  Unfortunately it didn't include a warranty.  I'm going to pull the valve cover and see if there's anything obvious there.  After that I could try checking compression on each of the cylinders but I'm afraid of doing any further damage by cranking the motor.  I'm open to any other suggestions and will advise on what I find when I pull the valve cover.  I really hate to give up my 44 year project but it will depend on what's it's going to take to get it fixed.

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@cgsheen1 might be able to help you out.  He has a business, Sakura Garage (pasted the link below), that should be close to you.  I assume that there will be charges, of course, but I'm sure you'll get an honest assessment.

Sometimes a rocker arm can pop off and make a lot of noise but with no real damage. @Barefootdan just had that problem, and his engine survived.  Surprisingly common with these engines, from what I've seen on the forums.  Good luck.

https://www.sakuragarage.com/

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I'll be the first to admit not to jump to conclusions if the motor isnt running 🙂 As @Zed Head mentioned, I had a rocker arm come off and I immediately thought my newly rebuilt engine suffered a head gasket failure. Lets see whats under the valve cover first and work our way through it. I am also in Phoenix too! I just finished rebuilding my L28 so it is fresh in my mind 😄 

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I'd just rebuilt one too and a lash pad fell of. Lots of noise but no damage. From what I remember the valve train is "sticky" after rebuilding and things need to commingle for the first few miles.

Don't throw in the towel! Speaking as a grandson nothing would mean more to me than my Grandad giving me his pride and joy. I got a bunch of fly fishing gear and a couple of guns but that's nothing compared to a Z car.

Hopefully it's something simple. Cliff

 

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