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Hello everyone. I have a 1973 TR6.  Over the past month, when driving, the engine has started cutting out from time to time.  I would pull over it would start right up and I would be on my way.  It has been more often lately.  Now, when I start the car in my garage, the second I move the gear shift into reverse the engine immediately stops.  It does not feel like a mechanical issue to me, the way they engine just abruptly stops, it feels electrical or other.

 

The car has been kept up very well, and over the past few years I've had a new fuel pump, new starter, new red ignition wire, new distrubuter cap, wires, plugs, etc.  Does anyone have any idea what this could be ?  Appreciate any advice!

 

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Welcome to the forum 'MPo"- do you have a name we can use?

The fault certainly does sound electrical from your description. Are there any electrical modifications to the car - is it on points or electronic ignition? 

One common source of ignition failure is the wire linking the distributor to the coil. Well worth checking the connections on both ends of that - the wire can fracture inside the insulation close to the connector body. 

Edited by RobH
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If I recall the carb version of the 73 has the ballast feed to the coil coming off the starter motor at a very hostile location compared to the later TR6 where the ballast wire comes off the relay on the inner wing. We do need to know more about your TR6 though and  a warm welcome from me.

Stan

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Hi all thanks for the welcome. My

name is Matt. The car has an electronic ignition and dual Weber carbs. No modifications other than the carbs. I will check the connections going to the coil to be sure they are good. I did open up the distributor cap today and noticed a very small wire that might be a ground , it was very frayed. I doubt this is what is causing the trouble though. See pic ! It is visible in the upper left corner. 

27C5BFC3-4983-4E30-96E3-410FBFAEF0C7.jpeg

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Hello Matt, welcome to this forum!

Yes the defective earth wire can cause this. It is a special wire as it needs to be flexible. But for a trial you could fix it by soldering. When dismantling note how it is installed, the internals of the dizzy rotate and move.

Also replace your rotor, the riveted type is know to be weak. Buy a red one that is stamped with DD. Look it up at “Distributor Doctor”; I think Moss sells it too. Avoid the black Lucas labeled rotors.

Cheers,

Waldi

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On a car with vacuum advance that earth wire is being moved all the time as the base-plate twists, which is why it has to be very flexible as Waldi says.  However,  I see your distributor does not have vacuum advance so the baseplate must be fixed and the wire will be static so flexibility is not as important. The ignition module probably needs to pick up a good earth via its mounting plate though.  The distributor does look a bit grotty and would benefit from a good cleaning as corrosion under the screws may result in bad connections.

If there isn't anything obviously wrong with the wires or connections then further diagnosis will be necessary. Do you have a multimeter Matt? 

Edited by RobH
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Hi Matt, that earth wire looks very dodgy. Also as Waldi says get a replacement rotor arm and a new wire from the Dizzy Doc. 

If that doesn't fix it then it may also be worth replacing that electronic ignition module as it also looks pretty old.

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I had undefinably problems with my electronic ignition the last years,  this year I drive with classic contact brakers and all problems are gone.

The resaons I explained here at that forum but no one believes me, I try with other words what happened to me, with my electronic ignition.

The rotor arm is in the best position to the 6 pick ups (4 on my 4A) which go to the spark plugs - for the original contact brakers.

If you change your original contact braker for a new one in the best case you don't need to adjust the distributor.

For an electronic ignition the space is very limited and it can be on a "unlucky" position on the monting plate,

so you have to turn the distributor in a "unlucky" position.

The pick ups now move to early ignition, the rotor moves eaven more to early when you eccelerate the engine - until rotor and pick ups loose contact.

This works anyway - but sometimes not. My electronic ignitions answer was from time a total fault for an undefined time.

Don't ask me why - it's an electronic device.

My advice to you is to go back to contact brakers and see what happens.

Ciao, Marco

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Important to do one thing at a time. Inside the distributor it does look corroded so replace the earth and clean it up inside, check all the other connetions from the coil and fit a red rotor. I would also invest in a new coil. But as I said only do one job at a time so you know what the fault cause is. 

 

Rob

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a 73 model TR6 would have had a retarding type vacuum unit that fits to the RH side of the distributor (where the thumb nut fixes on advance mech).  So I would expect it to move the base plate in much the same way as a vacuum advance does.  I too would consider the earth wire to be a possible suspect.

The feed from the LT circuit to the coil either via the 'pink' ballast wire in the loom may be another issue.  What coil are you using?  Has it been renewed recently?  Are all the wires at the coil nicely and cleanly connected?

Cheers

Peter W

Edited by BlueTR3A-5EKT
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23 minutes ago, Z320 said:

If the vacuum unit with the knurled nut is missing, how is the by the nut adjustable part of the unit fixed?

Is it fixed?

Staked to the distributor by a pin.  Just above the first 2 of 22D

What impresses me is that I knew where the distributor was in the garage - This isolation lark has helped a bit with finding and sorting.

image.png.b9366ebdb457bd373a39dc46a1cd3fc7.png

Edited by BlueTR3A-5EKT
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I interpreted  the question not as "how is the A/R mech fixed", but rather "how is the moving plate prevented from rotation if the spring that normally holds it is no longer there".  It must be held somehow, else the timing would be all over the place. 

Edited by RobH
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5 minutes ago, RobH said:

 

I interpreted  the question not as "how is the A/R mech fixed", but rather "how is the moving plate prevented from rotation if the spring that normally holds it is no longer there".  It must be held somehow, else the timing would be all over the place. 

In the original post the photo does not shew the connection of the vacuum unit to the baseplate as the electronic ignition baseplate seems to be covering it.

The red wire connected to the reed sw in the original post looks chewed - could it be shorting on something?

Cheers

Peter W

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16 hours ago, MPo said:

Hi all thanks for the welcome. My

name is Matt. The car has an electronic ignition and dual Weber carbs. No modifications other than the carbs. I will check the connections going to the coil to be sure they are good. I did open up the distributor cap today and noticed a very small wire that might be a ground , it was very frayed. I doubt this is what is causing the trouble though. See pic ! It is visible in the upper left corner. 

27C5BFC3-4983-4E30-96E3-410FBFAEF0C7.jpeg

Hi Matt,

Looking at your dizzy to me it has seen better days I think it needs to be sent to the DD for rebuilding? Looking at that frayed earthing wire it s/b terminated to that rusty Philips screw, via a tag on the  lhs outer edge of the body of the Dizzy it does not appear  to be, the case in your photo? But I may be wrong? Those electronic modules have to be  well earthed to the base plate yours does not appear to be?

Bruce.

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Hello thanks you for all the feedback!  I will try to fix that wire and also clean the corrosion in the distributor. Can anyone give me a tip about how to clean the parts in the distributor ?  I will order the suggested rotor as well. Thanks !

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I would take the dizzy out and flush it with something like petrol, but the less flammable. Think you call that white spirit?
Remove the baseplate for better access to the bottom area.And note orientation/timing before and after.

Cheers, Waldi

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Hi Matt & welcome,

It looks like you have a Pertronix Ignitor (?). If so they require different wiring for a ballasted coil as compared to a non ballasted one. Triumphs had both and , given the cars have had 50 odd years of modification , the only way to know for sure is to check.

I'm intrigued by the cutting out in reverse, with the car in reverse, ignition on, engine off, do you have 12V, 6V or nothing   at the coil?

 

 

 

 

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Matt, it would be helpful to know what TR6 you have as the PI and carb models have significant differences so if your TR6 was a PI car converted to carbs or is a US spec carb model is an important detail. Also knowing if you are in the UK or somewhere else will make it easier to help you with suppliers.

You can pretty much strip the distributor down to its components, clean everything and re-assemble. The only major issue is if there is a lot of slop in the shaft that may need a new bush or in extreme cases a new shaft and there are people that can sort that out for you too.

Stan

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