1979 Dodge Van darn thing won't start

Tiny
CARL KNITTEL
  • MEMBER
  • 1979 DODGE VAN
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 70,000 MILES
My van was converted to an Ice Cream truck then run by a guy with little mechanical maintenance for several years. It was in bad need of a tune up and then stopped starting yesterday. Cranks fine, won't catch. Changed plugs and wires and found no spark. Changed coil, good spark and good fuel flow. Still not catching. Changed rotor and distributor cap. Tried to catch once on the first try but not catching at all since then despite several attempts and triple checking all the connections. I'm outta ideas and looking for suggestions. I also changed the ignition resistor, partly because a neighbor suggested it and mostly because the previous owner had a spare in the glove box. I find anything he had a spare for tends to go bad regularly.
Do you
have the same problem?
Yes
No
Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010 AT 11:24 AM

3 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
The balast resister will allow the engine to start in the start position and then it will die when the key is placed in the run position.

Is the spark you are getting a good hot blue snapping spark? Will it run for a few seconds with starting fluid?
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, July 8th, 2010 AT 12:45 AM
Tiny
CARL KNITTEL
  • MEMBER
Actually, My main problem was a bunch of guys who claimed years of experience as professional mechanics. I didn't feel fuel was getting past the carburetor and said so but the "pros" insisted that wasn't it and kept looking for something else. When they finally gave me a couple hours alone with the truck because they couldn't figure out the problem, I got a rebuild kit and rebuilt the carb. The truck fired up immediately. It still seems to be running a little rich but, I need to visit my cousin, who inherited all the old car tools from my grandpa to set the adjustments right. Easiest way to fix an old car is to use tools from the same era.
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, July 8th, 2010 AT 7:15 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Way to go! You can have all the fuel pressure in the world, but if the needle and seat are stuck, nothing is getting into the carb. Thus, it won't run. When you adjust the air fuel mixture, wind both in the entire way and then back out 1 1/2 turns. That is the starting point. Then you can tell how it is running while adjusting. Also, make sure the choke it opening properly.

If you run into trouble, let me know. I hate to show my age, but when I went to school for mechanics, fuel injection was just starting to get popular.

Take care,
Joe
Was this
answer
helpful?
Yes
No
Thursday, July 8th, 2010 AT 4:57 PM

Please login or register to post a reply.

Recommended Guides