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Triumph Repair/tr6 want start


QUESTION: i have a 1972 tr6 been stitting up  for some time in the garage.tryed to start i have gas no spark. replaced coil, points, condenser, i have power on plus side of coil . none coming out. help please

ANSWER: Hi Greg,

First Remove the distributor cap and rotate the engine until the points are closed. Then turn on the Ignition key to "ON" (not start). Take a 12v test light and chaeck for power on the power side of the coil and you should have power. Then check for power on the points side of the coil and you should have no power.

If you have power on the points side of the coil, either the points are dirty or not closing or the ground strap from the points plate to the distributor is disconnected. At this time it is easy to track down the problem with your test light. Start probing with the test light for power on the points arm and the points plate and the "Pig tail" wire from the coil wire to the points.

If the test were that you have no power to the points side of the coil then it proves the points are grounding as they should. So now with your test light on the points side of the coil and you have no power, manually open the points with a "NON Metalic" piece of anything like a stick or piece of plastic. If that makes the test light on the coil, light up then the points are working.

Next remove the high tension coil wire from the coil tower and remove a spark plug and plug wire and plug the spark plug wire into the center socket of the coil itself. Put the spark plug on the plug wire and lay the plug on any metal part of the engine. Now you have the ignition "ON" and power to the power side of the coil and none on the points side and you have a plug wire plugged into the coul tower and the plug on that wire and laying on a metal poart of the engine. Now, take your piece of plastic you used to open the points and open the points and watch the spark plug. It should spark each time you open the points.

If it does then remove the dist cap and with a strong light look for carbon tracks inside the cap. If you don't see any remove the plug from the plug wire and with insulated pliers or a piece of rubber hold the plug wire about 1/8 inch from the center of the dist rotor and open the points with your piece of plastic several times. If you can jump a spark to the center of the rotor it is for sure bad.

Let me know the results of these tests.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: ha howard tryed every thing u said still no power to the points. i have replaced points, condenser, coil

If you tested the power to the points while the points were open and you had power to the coil then you have lost the connecting between the points and the coil. Or you didn't put the plastic spacers in correctly in the points.

With the engine turned to where the points are open turn on the Ignition and test for power on both sides of the coil. You should have power on both sides of the coil. If you don't have power on both sides of the coil remove the wire from the side of the distribitor and check the coil again. If that makes you gain power to both sides of the coil most likely you have the spacers on the points in the wrong position. If you have a digital camera take a photo of the inside of the distributor so I can see which kind of points you have.


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Howard M. Fitzcharles III


Triumph TR-4 up & Spitfire, and Engine theory


Dealership line mechanic on MG, Triumph, Jaguar for 15 years, Instructor in commercial mechanics school 2 yr. Product information manager for piston and valve manufacture, Instructor & hotline answer man for import car parts importer 15 yrs.

Associate member SAE EAA member

Import Car magazine

ASE Master Auto with L-1 certification up to 2000

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