74 ford clubwagon..wont start


Old 05-13-04, 01:13 AM
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Question 74 ford clubwagon..wont start

I have a 74 Ford clubwagon( automatic v8 302) that I got from a friend it ran ok when I got it then one day it just died. I have replaced the plugs, rotar, distributor, coil and wires. (they just need to be replace anyway i think wasnt sure how old they were.)It has fuel and air the problem is it still won't start. When I try to turn it over it only sparks when I first turn the key over to start it and when I let the key go back to run but while it is actually trying to start... no spark. I have tried checking if the ignition switch is bad by bypassing it but that won't start it either, I have also tried to put a wire straight to the coil from the battery to see if that gives it enough power to fire but no luck. I can only think it might be the starter relay or maybe the ecm Any help welcomed.
Also any idea where I can get a book on this model. I have a feeling I need to replace all the electrical wires they are the original ones and they are all taped togeather in bunches, very hard to figure out what wire is going to where.

Last edited by John; 05-13-04 at 01:19 AM. Reason: needed to add more information to explain problem
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Old 05-13-04, 03:26 AM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,538
sounds like you probably have an ignition module or pick up coil in the distributer that is bad.
If you have a test light you should check for power to the coil and should also check for power at the ignition module on the 2 wire connector red and white wires one will have power with the key on the other while the engine is cranking also make sure your ignition rotor is turning while cranking the engine over , cause if its not it will not have spark and there is a possibility of a timing chain or stripped distributer gear.
if the above checks ok you could remove your ignition module usually located on inner fender well has 2 connectors and have it tested at your local parts store to see if its any good.
pickup assembly in the distributer is also very easy to replace on this model as you do not have to even remove the distributer you will need a small 2 jaw puller and basic hand tools.
Old 05-13-04, 03:50 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Boynton Beach Florida
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You might also check for a weak coil. See if you have continuous pulse at the negative side first. If your losing the pulse, the module/pick up are the likely suspects.
Old 05-14-04, 10:48 PM
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round plug--oval hole???

The ignition module wasnt good so I bought a new ignition module for it but the plugs wont fit is there a special one for my year? (the guy at the Napa said that this was the right one but the two wire plug is the wrong shape its oval and the connector on the car is round)
The Coil is brand new so I dont think it is a weak coil but I will check it out anyway.
Old 05-14-04, 10:54 PM
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,538
where the wires come out of the module will be a colored plastic may be blue or brown there was a few different colors they used, if the new one is not the same color as the old one then you have the wrong module.
Old 05-17-04, 02:09 AM
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Talking I fixed it...thanks everyone.

Ok I finally got it started.. I had to replace the stator assembly in the distributor. I opened it up and the wires had just rotted off the magnetic pick up so I replaced that and it started right up. thanks for the help guys I never would have thought to check that part of the distributor. I thought it was something in the coil or plugs. I took the module back to Napa and a new guy told me that I couldnt return it because I had opened it ( some stupid policy) so I am out money on that part but at least the van is running. turns out the original module worked to start with.

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