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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I will start examining the ign

I will start examining the ignition system. The ignition portion of the manual(am using that from a 400i) shows minimal information.

I will first use a timing lite and make sure there is spark in each wire. I have the plugs out, so the engine will turn easier. Must I ground each wire, as I perform the test?.....or can I just have the wire loose?
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
On lesser vehicles I used to s

On lesser vehicles I used to simply hold the plug wire near a ground source and watch/listen for sparks. It seems if you grounded the wire you'd be shorting it out and get no spark. But if the timing light is in series wouldn't it show the pulse? Hmmmm......of course working by yourself makes things a big difficult to crank the key and be in the engine bay at the same time. If nothing else you could put just the plug in each cylinder that your testing, one at a time, and leave the others out to ease the load on the starter. That way you could hook up the timing light in normal fashion.

Sheesh....I'm really not much help here am I?
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I usually pull all the plugs a

I usually pull all the plugs and insert them into the boots at the end of the wires and lay the plugs onto a grounded metal object like the valve covers. With a helper turning the ignition ignition to the start position, one can observe the spark at each plug. I believe they also make a special plug with an aligator clip for a secure ground, but I don't think this is really necessary.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Bill: I like your idea. Sinc

Bill: I like your idea. Since the fuel pumps will be off, I can see no problem with your suggestion. I now need to find my remote starter.........how would I hook it up. I recall it has two leads.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Henry,

I use a remote start


Henry,

I use a remote starter button, frequently...for testing on many cars. The one I use, made by Mac Tools, has an LED on it, so I know when it's hooked up correctly.

Set-up:
-Disconnect fuel pumps
-Ensure car is in neutral
-Unplug the "signal" wire from solenoid (This is the wire that comes from the ignition "START" position of the key, and engages the solenoid when the key is turned). Connect one lead of your remote starter to the solenoid, where the "trigger" wire was connected.

-Connect the other wire from your remote starter to the large diameter wire post, on the starter, that is always "hot". You can verify this with a voltmeter, with the key in the "off" position. One wire is always "hot" at the starter. Don't disconnect it...just attach your remote starter there.

You shoud be ready to engage the starter now...


Regards,
David
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I used Bill's method......

I used Bill's method........worked great......thanks Bill. A friend came by and helped me.....still can't find the remote starter!

Well, I am getting spark in all 12 cylinders.

Fuel system, and pressures, are fine.......now I know I am getting spark. That takes care of the big 3: Air, Fuel, Spark.

My next plan is to install new iridium plugs, and try to start the car. My hope is that, while working with the fuel injection, the problem was some loose wire terminal(s). During my tests, they have all been connected and disconnected numerous times. I will do this tomorrow.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I put everything of the FI sys

I put everything of the FI system back.....installed new plugs. The car then started.......had to tighten some of the FD banjo unions slightly.

It soon idled at 1000 RPM, and ran smooth, as long as I didn't give it gas. When I did it backfired, and sputtered, but still ran.

I let it warm up.....idle was still OK. However, when I gave it gas, it backfired ever so slightly, and sputtered much less (than when cold). It revs freely to the upper ranges. It seems that the light backfire and sputter, only occurs at the start of the revving.......there is no backfire and sputter when the revs are up.

Does this sound like timing?

When the car died, a few weeks back, it wasn't all of a sudden, but after a few miles, it did backfire, and sputter, when I gave it gas........then finally died. This happened over a 10-15 minute period.

BTW: All last year the car ran fine. When I had it towed a few weeks ago, it was the first time I took the car out for the year. It started right up, and ran fine. I let it warm up, still fine...........drove it about 3 miles and started noticing something wrong.......made it 10 miles before the tow.......should have gone back home! It would seem the problem was caused by the sitting of the car, over winter!!
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
>Does this sound like timi

>Does this sound like timing? <

could be, definately check the Timing & Advance, but it sounds more like the Mixture is too lean..which could be adjustment or pressure related.
 
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
JRV: I have read that the ign

JRV: I have read that the ignition system should be working properly, BEFORE one adjusts the fuel mixture in any way.

Hence, I will proceed with: checking the resistance in the wires; checking timing and advance, etc.

In a previous thread, you thought that my "cold" WUR pressures where too low. These pressures where confirmed on BOTH sides, AND with a new WUR.....the temperature was in the mid 30 deg F range.

As I am beginning to understand this system, the lower the cold pressure of the WUR, the MORE fuel one gets available to the injectors. Hence my feeling of a timing problem......but why would it change on it's own, just sitting over the winter? I am now suspecting wires, distributor cap, rotor.
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Henry,

yes Low pressure wou


Henry,

yes Low pressure would lead to rich running condition...

could be retarded timing....

but one symptom of lean condition on CIS is backfiring thru the intakes when the throttle is rapidly depressed.

In many of these cases there is more than one thing or combination of things that can cause simular syptoms. Timing is certianly a basic that needs to checked & verified periodically.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
"It would seem the problem

"It would seem the problem was caused by sitting of the car over winter"
Bad gas, flush system with new gas
Just my 2 cents and worth what you paid for it.
Bob
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
>>Bad gas, flush syste

>>Bad gas, flush system with new gas <,

possible....any gas over 2-3 months old is certianly of questional quality.
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Henry:
I'm sure the Pros


Henry:
I'm sure the Pros have better methods, but for myself, would try to enrichen the mixture to see if the problem goes away.
Does the BBi have a Bosch Kjetronic system (w/Lambda sensor like the 328)?
If so then:
To verify an overall lean system condition (verses a single cylinder) you might want to hook your CSI up to 12V source thru a momentary contact switch. BTW on mine the polarity of the CSI input does not matter--CSI will fire either way) Pulsing the CSI will richen the mixture. If the problem goes away--there was a lean condition.
Also, you could disconnect the O2 sensor this would tell the computer that the system was running lean and bleed more control pressure off thru the frequency valve (enrichening the mixture). If this was too rich, you could put a half-dead AA battery in the circuit (towards the ECU only--O2 sensor does not like any voltage) to indicate a slightly richer condition (1.5 Volts would be max rich simulation).
The Probst book covers this well in Chap 5.2 Lambda control (Pg 22).

Good Luck (many times more important then skill!!)
Mark
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Bob: "bad gas".......

Bob: "bad gas".........very interesting. While I have heard this many times before, it never happened to me in all these years. Maybe it's about time.

Mark: The BBi has the most basic K-Jetronic system. No lamnda sensor, or O2 sensor.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
actually bad gas acts alot lik

actually bad gas acts alot like a lean condition because the octane has degraded below what the engine is requiring...yes it still explodes..but very poorly and erraticly.
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
JRV: If it lowers the octane.

JRV: If it lowers the octane.......bought 93 octane, then I may be able to use in my Camry.....haha.

It's been too cold to work on the car. Tomorrow I have off.......supposed to be in the 70s.....finally!!!!!!!

I will check the timing, advance and condition of the wires. If all check out, then "bad gas" will have NEW meaning to me.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
JRV - I preface my comments by

JRV - I preface my comments by offering that your knowledge of things Ferrari is exceeded only by your willingness to share it. That said, I have a slight disagreement with your comment concerning bad gas. First, the only bad gas is gas containing water. Age will not effect your gas. Anecdotally, I have started vehicles up years after their last gas refill. No problem. Scientifically, other than evaporation, there is little that will degrade. Finally, octane is more a measure of "flash point", the temperature at which it will ignite, and achieved by creative impurities added to the petrol. I do not believe that octane will "degrade" (read decrease) with time. And even if it does, the consequence would be pre-ignition.

Look to things that man made or had his/her hands on. Nature did a good job with the petrol. The Celestial Design Committee worked a long time on this.

Jim S.
 
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hi Jim,

all I can say is ba


Hi Jim,

all I can say is bad gas will ignite, but very very poorly. I respect your scientific expertise on these matters. I'm just speaking from experience, gas that sits looses it's volitility or ability to perform as intended...still kills ants though
.. It definately changes smell also...coming out the tailpipe, bad gas has a distinctive shellac like odor. I agree that in days gone by gas lasted..but with todays reformulated fuels...gas seriously goes bad in a couple months, no kidding. I honestly didn't think of bad gas until Bob mentioned it, but it is actually a possibility.

Regards, JRV
 
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Past experience with fuel chec

Past experience with fuel checks in race cars has shown that fuel does change with age, and can do so very quickly. The lighter volatile,s evaporate out. Anyone ever had to clean the jets in a carburator that were full of gum? We have had legal race gas fail the electrolic test after sitting over night in the fuel cell. It gained just enought water vapor through the cell vent to fail the test. New reformulated gas does degrade and can also attack older fuel lines and other gaskets. My main thought in the "bad gas" comment was water in the gas. One of our trucks got a tank of gas/water and it ran like the Ferrari. And last year, we just about rebuilt everthing on my friends boat,Ignition,Carb's,wiring,Vacuum leakes and removed the intake manifold to see if it had sucked the gasket inside the port. Then, after running it out of gas testing it, we added new gas and no more problem. we were real proud of that deal
Just trying to help,, Bob
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Bob - my experience is that ol

Bob - my experience is that old gas in street cars is a non-issue (with the exception of water). I cannot offer intelligent comment on racing fuel or cars.

JRV - You are likely correct, that the chemical nature of the gas changes with time. However, an otherwise well-tuned engine should start with old gas. Perhaps it is a combination of things that brings the bad out in bad gas.

I am still interested in the Coach's touch temperature measure of his fuel pump electric supply line.

Jim S.
 
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