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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi I have an 89 Sidekick - 4x4 standard, 2 dr.
I want to use it as an off road vehicle.
I had to jump the fuel pump and loosen up the screws on the fuel injector to get it to start. When it did it only throttled up about half way before sputtering and losing power.
The catalytic converter is missing.
I jumped the fuel pump with a line directly to the battery. Didn't touch the relay.
I've looked at all the possible problems with the computer, relays, limp home mode, catalytic converter etc (thank you very much Suzuki Forum). BUT here's my question - is it possible to strip out all the "complicated" electronics, and simplify the system?
Thank you very much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ooooooooo! This looks interesting. Is this all I would have to do to make the thing run without the ECM? Would there be any other mods required?
Thanks a bunch - much appreciated!
 

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It has been a few years since I did mine, but it isn't too complicated. As long as you get a good carb to start with. There are a lot of Harley carbs on ebay as guys go to bigger ones. I decided not to get a used one, and bought a new 44mm Screaming Eagle version.

The guy that modifies the stock intake to accept the carb is Myron at ZOR's off road. Roadlessgear sells them, but they are also available off ZOR's website. I just checked his website and see he has an even simpler version now.....

Sidewinder CV Carb kit

Below is a pic of my Mikuni setup from about 4 years ago. Looks like the newer version is quite a bit more compact.....




edit: The links I provided are for using a 1.3 intake, which bolts right up. Mine was a modified 1.6 8v intake.
You can give Myron a call at ZuksOffRoad and let him give you your options.
 

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With a carb, you won't need any electronics, just basic coil, distributor and plugs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This'll sound stupid, (I just bought the thing and it's not quite in my possession... )
but, will the existing coil and distributor suffice?
What will the rough cost be to do the upgrade?
Thanks again, I really appreciate your help.
Best,
alex
 

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My memory is not as sharp as it used to be, but I believe I used the stock distributor, if not possibly one from a Samurai 1.3, but I did have MSD coil and wires. Stock coil should be fine though.
I imagine you would be in the entire affair $400-500 give or take depending on the price of the Harley carb. They can be had for cheap on ebay.
 

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Like I said earlier, the intake is the big question 1.3 or 1.6 8v. I found a close up pic of my stock 1.6 8v intake that had been modified by Myron to accept the Harley Mikuni side draft carb. You can see the throttle cable and the adapter plate he put on the original intake opening, then opened a hole in the side for the carb to mount. Good luck with your new toy!


 

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Just to be the devils advocate here - the electronics in the 89 are not particularly complicated. If you have fuel pump issues, you will have them with EFI or carb. If your car is not timed properly, you will still have those issues. IMHO, dealing with the EFI is far less complicated than dealing with a finicky carburetor.
The cat is meaningless in an 89, and won't cause any problems if there isn't one. The fuel pump connections are behind the left rear tail light, and this is a known corrosion area - you may want to check for good connection and ground there.
While you advise that you have looked at all the possible problems that this can be, simply put, if the car is timed properly (do a compression test to confirm engine timing) and tuned properly (check ignition timing, and make sure plugs are gapped to .028"), confirm that the check engine light is on with the key on and off once the car starts. If so, then chances are your problem is mechanical (fuel pressure, timing, etc) which will also transfer to a carb engine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I always appreciate all points of view, especially the devil's.
I have to get back to the machine and look it over again, with your suggestions in mind.
But how do I get it out of limp home mode?
And reading something, somewhere it said the cat DID affect the electronics/ECM...
Thanks,
ak
 

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Thus far, nothing you have said has confirmed that you are in limp home mode - which, from what I understand, allows you to get the car home from wherever it breaks down, but is not meant to allow the car to continue to start again and again. You first need to advise if your check engine light is on with the key on, and off when the car starts. Also, confirm that you can get a code 12 (or whatever code) from the check engine light:
Check Engine Light
Note that on the older computers, we have all had to change out the capacitors in the ECU - there are 3 of them that are known to fail, and if you know how to solder, the repair is about $5.
You should also run a compression test on the engine and post your results. You should get about 170 psi on all cylinders on a slightly warm engine. Don't forget to remove all the plugs, have the battery well charged, stop fuel and spark, and floor the gas pedal when you are cranking for best compression.
You should also pull your plugs and check the tips - make sure they are gapped to .028", and check their condition for lean/rich, etc. The fuel pump runs off a ground that is behind the left rear tail light - you should check there to make sure there is a good ground and good connections - this is a known rust area. You may want to confirm your fuel pressure (factory spec is 34-41psi).
You also may want to try to start the car on test fuel, and see if the car will continue to run as long as you continue to supply the fuel. If so, this would indicate that your problem is on the fuel side of ignition - pump, pressure or signal from the ECU.
You may notice that, with the exception of the check engine light, all of the above is applicable to a carb engine, as well. Frankly, my engine is quite similar to yours. I have owned my car for 19 years, and have never owned anything as dependable. IMHO, the early 8v Trackicks, prior to 1996, are the best in this series - easy and fun to run, easy to fix, and incredibly dependable once you get them set up correctly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hey Bex,
Thank you very very much for this.
If I can't find a corrosion or connection issue with the fuel pump, would the problem next be in the ECM or relay or possibly both?

I'm not going to be near the vehicle for a few weeks. I'm going to try your suggestions and get back to you then.
Said it before and I'll say it again - the internet is great and so are all the people who openly share their knowledge. Much appreciated all!
 

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Taking your first post into account, there are a number of circuits to check before assuming that the ECU is the problem (although, again, if you have never changed the caps in the ECU, you should - they will fail at some point). It seems that you need to go over this car from the beginning - timing, tuning, connections, check engine light, changing filters, etc., etc., before you can really diagnose further.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Where can I order the "caps" and what am I ordering (part number etc)?
Is there a site somewhere with instructions?

Thanks,
 

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See post #22 here:
http://www.suzuki-forums.com/suzuki...ker/56867-92-sidekick-no-start-2wd-1-a-3.html
If you remove and disconnect the computer, located behind the left front speaker (and you should remove the negative battery lead before doing this, just in case), the computer is attached by two locking connectors, that have tabs that need to be depressed so you can remove them. Carefully, as it is difficult to find replacements. Remove the top of the ECU (4 screws) and inside you will see 3 black capacitors with an X on top, that may say Rubycon along the side. These should be replaced with the caps indicated in the above post. Also look for any damage or leakage on the circuit board. You can get the caps as above, and if you have no experience in working with a circuit board, your local computer repair shop can replace the caps for you.
 
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