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Discussion Starter #1
just bought a 88 samurai and it is not getting any spark. i replaced the coil, dist and igniter. it has power to the coil in run and when its cranking but no spark. if any one has any ideas of things to check i would greatley appreciate any help or advice.
 

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This may seem like a silly question, but we have to start somewhere.
You say you replaced the distributor, igniter and coil correct? When you replaced the distributor, did you have the engine set to TDC (top dead center)? This will ensure the that distributor is not 180 degrees off. Next, when you replaced everything, did you test the integrity of the wires? I just found that my wires were making poor contact due to dry rot. Also have you replaced the cap and rotor?
And lastly do you have an FSM (factory service manual). If not let me know, and I will send you one.

Let me know and we'll go from there,

Sabine
 

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yes i did make sure engine was at tdc on compression stroke, tested the wires with multi meter and all of them tested good. just picked up a cap and rotor but havnt installed them yet the old cap/rotor look good but i figure its a $4 part may as well replace it and rule it out too. i do have a fsm also. one question i had was about the coil. it says it has to be used with an external resistor but there is no ballast resistor anywhere. i am assuming that the ignitor works as a resistor?
 

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on the 88 samurai the ignitor and resistor are in the distributor. Did you check the ground on the dist? If it's got a bad ground or the ground isn't hooked up you won't get any spark.

Do you have spark at the distributor? I.E. If you unplug the plug wire from the dist, and put your finger in the hole, do you get a jolt whe it's cranking?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
i know the ground wire is connected on the dist housing where the distributor goes into. is there another ground going direcley to the distributor i should check or is that it? i havnt put my finger on it to see if there is spark there. are you talking on the cap where the coil wire goes?
 

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As far as I can tell, it has nothing to do with your spark probelm... A broken shifter sheet would prevent you from shifting, probably locking your tranny into neutral until you replaced it. But spark, I don't see it. Maybe Craig can find the actual site on Wiki.Answers, for you and it would explain everything.

I'm not sure about this, but have you checked the ECM for leaky capacitors? It could be that you are getting power to the coil, but then the ECM can't tell the car what to do with it. Just a thought. Check out RockAuto Auto Parts if you find that you need a new one.

We keep trying
Sabine
 

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early samurai ignition is mechanically controlled. as far as I know there is just the one ground wire from the dizzy. If that's got a good connection then probably not the problem. Sticking finger in the dizzz's cap is one way to check to see if it's sparking, I suppose a less dramatic way is to hold the plug wire just off the contact and listen for the snapping noise of the spark arc.
 

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i have wondered about the ecm. is there any way easy to check that? im starting to wonder if i didnt get a bad coil or igniter from the parts store. not likley but possible.
 

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so when you remove a plug wire from the dizyy when it's cranking, you don't hear the spark snapping when you hold the plug wire just inside the hole far enough to make the spark arc? How about if you unplug the coil plug from the dizzy and hold it in the same manner?
 

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The easiest thing you can start with is a basic visual inspection of the ecm ciruit board itself. The ECM is located up and behind the glove-box on the passenger side. If you shine a light up in there you will see an approx. 4-inch square by about 1-inch thick black metal box (pg. 5-11 of the FSM). Remove the two retaining bolts holding it to the frame, and unplug the long white power connector. Once you have the box down, open it and inspect the board. Look for any obvious fried components and or any capcitors (those silver topped little towers) which look to be leaking like a blown battery. They should be nice an flat on the top, so if you see any which are beginning to have a domed top, you can pretty much figure that its a problem or will become one real soon.


If everything looks good here, check the wire connector for continuity (make sure all the red wires are hot and the yellow ones are hot with the key, though you should check the FSM to be sure, there is a wiring diagram in the back). Also make sure it is grounded properly.

Sabine
 
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