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Thread: June 1973 240z - E12-80 distributor - car died, won't start

  1. #1
    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    Default June 1973 240z - E12-80 distributor - car died, won't start

    Hi all

    I have a June 1973 240Z with an F54 L28 & Mikuni 44 PHH carbs.
    It's had an E12-80 electronic distributor & MSD Blaster2 coil for 4~5 years now & has always run like a champ.

    On Friday evening it randomly died on me at a stop light in town.
    Wouldn't start up again. I pushed it to the side.
    Made sure it had fuel + spark + E12-80 wiring was nice and tight.

    After an hour of fidgeting she fired up again but with some hesitation at low revs. I managed to struggle home and parked it out in front.


    I just spent all afternoon on it and it still won't start!

    _I had new-ish NGK BP6ES R plugs - but pulled those out and swapped in brand new ones gapped to 0.85mm
    _New NGK blue plug wires - I tested resistance and found that they are all about 6500~7000ohm when attached to cap (factory wear limit is 30000ohm)

    _Cap & Rotor are basically new, but I still swapped both out to rule that out
    _I tried two different E12-80 distributors (mine and one that's been sitting on workbench in garage).
    _Distributor neither fully retarded nor fully advanced - set right down the middle.
    _I tried two different coils (my Blaster 2 coil & stock new 280zx coil)
    _I made sure the wiring was as it has been for the past years.
    _I pulled the wires off of the + & - of coil and made sure there was no corrosion on the blades - steel wool until they were shiny

    FYI My E12-80 module wiring has never looked like this:
    http://zhome.com/ZCMnL/tech/ZXPertronix.htm

    _Tank has fuel & starter does crank & crank & crank but engine just won't start however.




    I've always attributed that to my car being a 73 and having the later tach which receives a signal from the - post, not the + post like the 70-72 cars do.

    Can someone with a 73 & an E12-80 spell out if they are using the above diagram or something else ?

    Again I've had it running like this for years w/o a hitch...



    What the heck?
    I feel like I've tried everything...

    Help?
    Thanks.

    -e

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    They symptoms say "bad module" is the first place to look ... they usually go out when they overheat - letting the car sit and cool allowed it to start one last time... using the original set up - ice down the module and see if the car will at least start....

    I don't like swapping in used parts that I don't know for sure are good.... did you have the second distributor running in another car recently (yes/no?)

    Did you say that you checked and you have power to the coil with the ignition key set to run? and did you check power at the coil when the ignition key is switched to 'Start"?... maybe your ignition switch is the problem...

    Just thinking... off the top of my head...

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

  3. #3
    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    Carl

    Thanks for the reply.

    how do I check if the E12-80 module is indeed bad?

    the spare distributor I had on the shelf I actually don;t remember if i ever tested it before or if it has ever been on the car before...
    I guess it's possible both distributors have bad modules - wouldn;t that be my luck?

    i did not take voltmeter to coil - but I can certainly try that and report back

    -e

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    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    I take back what I said

    No spark at sparkplug

    0.5 volt at + coil when key is in ON & START positions

    Just picked up another spare E12-80 at junkyard

    Going home to try it out

  5. #5
    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    ok

    So I've now tried 3 distributors, 2 coils, new cap+rotor+plugs, checked plug wires & I get no spark

    Has to be wiring right?

    Forget the tach what's the minimum I need to get the car started?

    GW & BW which used to go to ballast resistor get spliced together, E12-80 B lug goes to + post on coil, and?...

    Thanks

  6. #6
    No more body roll! SteveJ's Avatar
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    What is the voltage at the battery?

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    Am at work right now, not in front of car, but I can report that:

    Battery voltage is probably starting to get low since I've been trying to crank it for a day or so...
    Starter still SOUNDS healthy - not wheezy just yet...
    (good ol' optima)

    -e

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    Quote Originally Posted by EricB View Post
    I take back what I said

    No spark at sparkplug

    0.5 volt at + coil when key is in ON & START positions

    Just picked up another spare E12-80 at junkyard

    Going home to try it out
    You SoCal guys kill me! You can stop at lunch at a salvage yard and get Datsun parts! I have to call all surrounding salvage yards and ask if they know what a Datsun is, and if I'm lucky, they have one or two!

    Hope you get it nailed down and back on the road!
    Dave the Z guy in AR.

    To Z or not to Z, it's a rhetorical question!


  9. #9
    Old Z Guy LanceM's Avatar
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    Just as a note, you can get a fully rebuilt dizzy at NAPA for the cost of a new module and it comes complete. I went this route as with 72ZDave there are no Datsuns in the JY's here any more...
    Lance

    73 240Z, tripple webbers, 5 speed, 4 wheel disk, Einbach springs
    98 BMW 540i/6

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    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    lance

    Do you think I happen to have 3 bad dizzys in a row & that is my only problem?

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    long time owner a7dz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EricB View Post
    I take back what I said

    No spark at sparkplug

    0.5 volt at + coil when key is in ON & START positions

    Just picked up another spare E12-80 at junkyard

    Going home to try it out
    You have to figure out why you do not have power at the + terminal of the coil and E12-80 module. Get power there and she will run.
    Jim
    Bought my 70Z at 21 with 24,000 miles
    Still own it. Thirty plus years later.


  12. #12
    beandip beandip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EricB View Post
    Hi all

    I have a June 1973 240Z with an F54 L28 & Mikuni 44 PHH carbs.
    It's had an E12-80 electronic distributor & MSD Blaster2 coil for 4~5 years now & has always run like a champ.

    On Friday evening it randomly died on me at a stop light in town.
    Wouldn't start up again. I pushed it to the side.
    Made sure it had fuel + spark + E12-80 wiring was nice and tight.

    After an hour of fidgeting she fired up again but with some hesitation at low revs. I managed to struggle home and parked it out in front.


    I just spent all afternoon on it and it still won't start!

    _I had new-ish NGK BP6ES R plugs - but pulled those out and swapped in brand new ones gapped to 0.85mm
    _New NGK blue plug wires - I tested resistance and found that they are all about 6500~7000ohm when attached to cap (factory wear limit is 30000ohm)

    _Cap & Rotor are basically new, but I still swapped both out to rule that out
    _I tried two different E12-80 distributors (mine and one that's been sitting on workbench in garage).
    _Distributor neither fully retarded nor fully advanced - set right down the middle.
    _I tried two different coils (my Blaster 2 coil & stock new 280zx coil)
    _I made sure the wiring was as it has been for the past years.
    _I pulled the wires off of the + & - of coil and made sure there was no corrosion on the blades - steel wool until they were shiny

    FYI My E12-80 module wiring has never looked like this:
    http://zhome.com/ZCMnL/tech/ZXPertronix.htm

    _Tank has fuel & starter does crank & crank & crank but engine just won't start however.




    I've always attributed that to my car being a 73 and having the later tach which receives a signal from the - post, not the + post like the 70-72 cars do.

    Can someone with a 73 & an E12-80 spell out if they are using the above diagram or something else ?

    Again I've had it running like this for years w/o a hitch...



    What the heck?
    I feel like I've tried everything...

    Help?
    Thanks.

    -e
    Classic failure of a 12 80 Module. Loose the Blaster coil , and go with a OEM coil and all will be good. Just went through this with a friend and after frying 3 modules found the Blaster is the cause. Puts out the wrong values for this ignition. Thank you Kim Blough for the heads up. Gary
    I'd rather die while I am living than live while I am dieing. CZC 1887 IZCC 12602 Member of NorthWest Z Car Club

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    Quote Originally Posted by EricB View Post
    I take back what I said

    No spark at sparkplug

    0.5 volt at + coil when key is in ON & START positions

    Just picked up another spare E12-80 at junkyard

    Going home to try it out

    bad/mixed up connections, bad ignition switch or relay ??? ... you should have 12 volt with ignition switch ON and 12 volt with ignition switch START, as the Blaster uses 12V as I recall...

    BTW - many people are using the GM ignition module - far far less expensive than the NISSAN OEM part... and available at any Auto Parts Store..

    Do you have a picture of the set-up/wiring?

    Carl B.

  14. #14
    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    Gary
    Jim

    Should I run 12v direct from battery to coil & bypass my stock wiring for now?

    If I burnt out my E12-80 module after running the Blaster2 coil for several years it would be weird there's something all of a sudden wrong w/ the wiring right?

    Gary thanks for talking to Kim B. I think I used a Msd coil because Zcargarage liked it so many years ago...

  15. #15
    another classic car guy EricB's Avatar
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    Z is running.

    12v from battery straight to coil + did start the car

    I found that a connection for GW & BW was loose & causing the problem
    Also think that my distributor had some issues itself, shaft is loose & shows signs of having wobbled & caused uneven wear. Don't know yet if it's E12-80 is dead too

    Will check that next

    Thanks for everyone's help

    -e

  16. #16
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    Thanks for the feeback Eric... good to know you located the problem

    FWIW,
    Carl B.

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