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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm working on a friends DX , the engine is sputtering when you step on the throttle (5 speed car) .
I replaced the fuel filter , spark plugs , and distributor cap and rotor .
I figured those would help but really did not .
If you step on the gas , it sputters and drops power until you ease off the throttle to near closed and then the car stops sputtering and slowly accelerates .
I thought of advancing the ignition timing since I have had a Nissan that did something similar but the dist. is turned to the farthest advanced setting already (yes I backed the timing down and sputter was the same) .
I disconnected the MAP sensor and the engine stalls . Bent the vacuum line to the sensor and then reved and the engine stalled so I assume the MAP is OK , unless it's reading wrong .
I don't know the test voltages for it ........
Disconnecting the TPS made no changes to accelerating and receiving a sputter , I also do not know the voltages for TPS tests .......

Very strange as it acts like a vacuum/timing issue to me but perhaps someone here had ad a car that acted like this one and can point me in the correct direction .

Thanks , Chris .
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
The wires look fairly new , the outside looks good and I did not notice anything down in the valve cover / head holes while installing the plugs .
I may recheck but Im pretty sure they are fine . Been running like this for 2 months now and I replaced the cap/rotor/fuel filter/plugs this weekend and it did not help .
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Matters not , the problem showed itself tonight .
Got a call the car died . Went and looked and there is no spark .
It was dark so I did minimal testing . I did ground the - side of the coil and tried to get the coil to fire . It would arc off my lead pretty well but the coil was tossing a very small arc if any at all . Im pretty sure the coil is done . The coil body also has a discolored spot and a Honda I worked on before did something similar but it blew a hole in the side of the coil .
I need to check both the coil and module tomorrow morning before I spend the guys $$ . Hopefully I can find the test sequence in the book , though Im 99% sure the coil has failed .
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
OK,
Here is the down-low for future questions/problems like this car had .

The Coil was weak but was still firing . I retested it this AM and it was within specs on it's Ohm testing . I then fired it myself by disconnecting the - (negative) coil wire and turning the ignition on and running a test lead to engine ground and against the coil - lead . The coil sparked but weakly .
I decided to remove the ignitor to check it out .
The inside of the distributor had alot of rust-looking-dust in it . I was not sure what it was or where it had come from as the distributor is aluminum and most internal parts were coated and not rusty .
Once the ignitor was out , the cause was found .
The chopper wheel for the distributor had been cutting into the surface of the ignitor . Im not sure how it could happen as the distributor bushings seemed fine . Im not sure if the mount for the ignitor or the ignitor itself warped from heat and age and began contacting the chopper wheel .
The "rust" was actually brown plastic from the ignitor .
The screws were all tight for the ignitor mount so Im not sure what happened but it did make contact with the chopper so ......
I bought a NEW , no core charge -rebuilt Distributor for $185.xx from Central Auto Parts in Cocoa , Florida .
Total tax and all out the door was $196.xx . It includes the entire distributor , with a brand new cap and rotor , all internal sensors , the coil , and ignitor .
Installed it and the car fired right up . I did a timing by ear until I can get a timing light to run it with . I had it advanced a little too much and the engine was pinging so I backed it off hair . Seems fine now but I have to get my timing light back and then I can set it correctly .
When I drove the car it accelerates flawlessly , no more sputtering / missing . The engine just takes off and screams up to the shift point without hesitation .

So , if your car is bogging/sputtering like this one was and when you remove the distributor cap and find a "rust" colored dust inside , there is a good chance you ignitor is rubbing the chopper wheel .

Perhaps there is a adjustment to the ignitor , I dunno as I never adjusted it . The NEW unit also comes with a lifetime warranty whereas most ignitors I saw had only a 1 year warranty .

Hope my discovery helps someone down the road . Thanks for the help , Chris .
 
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