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Offline blupinto

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Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« on: January 09, 2013, 08:19:37 PM »
I already have a '74 whose problems confounded me so that I buried her in my garage. Now my wagon Moxie is doing something similar. Alas, I have no more garage space, so I have to deal with her!

          She's been running great ever since I bought her in October. I changed her oil and filter last weekend and replaced her broken sway bar link. Today, on my way home, I stopped at one of the many red lights I encounter on this route. When the light turned green I proceeded in 1st gear. When I depressed the clutch, shifted into 2nd, and released the clutch the car didn't respond. The engine didn't revv like I was still in neutral. In fact it kinda made an unhappy rumbling noise and was fixing to stall. I was able to limp the car to the side in a rather dangerous area (no choice) and as soon as we came to a stop she died. I was unable to start the engine after that, and had to call AAA to get us out of our hairy situation and to home.

         I got a glimpse of the timing belt- it's not broken from what I could see. The spark plug wires are old, but none were loose or off. Does this sound like a timing issue, a transmission issue, or an engine issue? There was no leaks, smoke, or funny smells when this happened or after. The car is a Squire wagon with a 2.3 and 4-speed. I appreciate any help or advice I can get.
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Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #1 on: January 09, 2013, 08:41:25 PM »
Since the engine died & wont start that rules out the trans & clutch. That narrows it to fuel, spark or timing.
 
Spray a little starting fluid in the carb & crank it to see if it's fuel. If it doesn't fire pull a plug wire, insert a screwdriver at the plug end & crank it while holding the screwdriver 1/2" from any metal & check for spark. It has to be narrowed down to go further.
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Offline cutelitlputtputt

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2013, 08:49:23 PM »
Becky, I died like this on the freeway during rush hour back in March.  Wore my battery out trying to start it.  A cop had to push me off the freeway!!

There was something with the carburetor.  Also my catalytic converter was clogged up real bad because of my old engine.  It is like the car could not breathe or something!!!!
Anything to keep her runnin'!

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2013, 09:04:22 PM »
My money is on the timing belt. Sounds like it's due for replacement. How many miles are on the car Becky?

Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2013, 09:18:04 PM »
Just dying like that could be a plugged fuel filter, bad fuel pump, ignition box, distributor module, timing belt or bad cap/rotor if it's apart failure.
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Offline Pinturbo75

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2013, 09:27:53 PM »
or a stripped dizzy gear.....
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Offline ToniJ1960

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2013, 09:44:13 PM »
 I remember a few years ago I came up to a stop put the clutch in and my motor just stopped dead as if someone turned the key off and it wouyldnt start again. It was the timing belt broken. So I would think its not the tinming belt if you looked and its not broken especially.Min e was easy to see it was obviously broken.

 Maybe the first thing to do is pull off the gas hose at the carb stick it in a jar turn the engine over for a second or two maybe three and see if theres any gas in the jar. After that maybe try to get a look at the cap and points? I never had to bother with then on my two 74s and one 75 I had, but I didnt have them for real long. I would imagine if anything changed about the points you might be able to see it. The capacitor you wont but it shouldnt take much to replace it for a try.

Offline ToniJ1960

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2013, 09:48:18 PM »
Since the engine died & wont start that rules out the trans & clutch. That narrows it to fuel, spark or timing.
 
Spray a little starting fluid in the carb & crank it to see if it's fuel. If it doesn't fire pull a plug wire, insert a screwdriver at the plug end & crank it while holding the screwdriver 1/2" from any metal & check for spark. It has to be narrowed down to go further.

 Or maybe a vacuum hose came loose somewhere?

Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2013, 09:48:35 PM »
or a stripped dizzy gear.....

I wasn't ready to frighten her with stuff like that just yet lol. Or wiring issues......
 
Best to check the simple things first  ;)
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2013, 10:58:32 PM »
She's tuff....ain't skeered lol

Offline blupinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2013, 11:22:13 PM »
lol AM skeered!

I wouldn't be surprised if something got stuck between the gas tank and the filter. When I bought this car, the gas cap was gone and there had been rain. Who knows how long the car sat with old/crappy gas too. I've filled the tank at least three times and as I get towards the last quarter tank before fill-up the car will have moments of surging and sometimes even backfiring.  Still, why wouldn't the car go into 2nd gear before it stalled? Does it have to do with synchronizatio n of engine RPMs to tranny position? I'm hoping whatever it is one of your suggestions will be right on. I looked at the vacuum lines for a minute before I was compelled to get back in the car (she stalled in a bad area where there was no shoulder and only one lane. We were straddling the sidewalk) but I didn't see any lines missing connectors. Now that she's safe in the driveway I'll try to have an extended look-see. It probably won't be til Saturday (hopefully it won't be raining) but my fingers are crossed! Thank you all for the responses.  :)
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Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2013, 12:40:22 AM »
Yeah, the engine cut out between gears so it just didn't mesh since RPM's dropped.
 
The vacuum lines would cause stalling or rough idle but you said it wont fire. If it comes to life with starting fluid then it's a fuel problem. If that's the case then pull the fuel line at the carb & crank the engine to see of it pumps fuel through the line. If it does & there is a fuel filter screwed into the carb just change it, hook up the fuel line & see if it starts.
 
If no fuel comes out of the line & there is an inline filter try removing that & cranking it to check for fuel flow. If you get flow just replace that filter & then try starting it. If you get nothing then it could be a bad fuel pump, clogged fuel line or the sock in the tank could be plugged with crud.
 
If it doesn't fire on starting fluid then you need to check for spark. 
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75bobcatv6

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2013, 01:04:57 AM »
If its the fuel line you can also remove the line from the tank at the mechanical pump and compress it with air to Blow the plug back into the tank. More then likely sounds like your Timing belt.. Check it and make sure there are no missing teeth. Im hoping that its a Fuel Issue as thats much easier to deal with. Good luck

Offline Pinto5.0

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2013, 02:35:41 AM »
I just remembered, check the timing belt 1st because the fuel pump runs off that belt. I can't believe I forgot that......
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Offline HOSS429

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2013, 06:30:58 AM »
pull the emergency brake .. put the car in neutral gear .. open the hood .. put on a glove .. grab the fan blade and try to turn the engine with it .. watch and see if the timing belt/cam gear  moves with it .. belts strip teeth as often as they break ... if the engine wont turn with the fan blade then the alternator  belt is too loose ...

Offline r4pinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2013, 01:53:20 PM »
Good point. Had that happen on my 85 Omni. Engine wouldn't turn & the belt looked good. turned out the belt had no teeth at the cam gear

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Offline blupinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #16 on: January 10, 2013, 07:23:47 PM »
Well, so far I've tried the fan blade test. THe fan turns, sure enough... but nothing else does. The alternator belt seems fairly tight, but that wasn't moving, either.  :-\ Now it's too dark and cold (we're in for a cold snap as bad as in '07 here) so I'll tighten alt. belt and then see what happens.  Saturday, if fair weather holds out, I'll do the other stuff. Good news is I do have a fuel filter waiting in the wings for her. I just haven't had a chance to replace her old one. It's the one that screws into the carburetor itself.
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Offline johnbigman2011

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #17 on: January 10, 2013, 07:27:34 PM »
Becky, get you a sweat shirt and a light and get after it... I want to hear what is wrong with her.
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Offline blupinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #18 on: January 10, 2013, 07:31:15 PM »
lol John I've been digging out drains and chopping out fountain grass and other crap all day. I'm plumb tuckered out tonight, not to mention ice cold. My fingers are numb.  :)
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Offline johnbigman2011

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #19 on: January 10, 2013, 07:49:26 PM »
I didn't think that it ever got cold in Cali.. Maybe the mountains??
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Offline r4pinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #20 on: January 10, 2013, 07:55:16 PM »
lol John I've been digging out drains and chopping out fountain grass and other crap all day. I'm plumb tuckered out tonight, not to mention ice cold. My fingers are numb.  :)

What is your definition of cold?
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #21 on: January 10, 2013, 08:13:12 PM »
In the 20s and 30s. It's supposed to get that cold tonight. Right now I think, with wind-chill factor it's in the 40s and YES THAT'S COLD! No bellyaching about us Californians who don't REALLY know what cold is!  If my fingers are numb it's COLD... or my carpal tunnel acting up. In this case it's cold.  ;D


Yes we have snow in our mountains as low as 2000 ft (unusual).  We had a cold snap in 2007 that devastated a lot of crops out here... in the millions of dollars.  A lot of avocado and citrus farmers were devastated too.  It doesn't usually get this cold but in parts of San Diego it even snowed briefly! Now THAT'S RARE! lol Where was the snow when I was a kid!?
Don't want it now. The way people drive out here, if there was a little ice on the roads the freeway system would shut down due to all the knuckleheads who can barely drive on sunny dry days now driving on snow or ice. YIKES!!! :o

Ok for now I'm off my soap box. I already miss driving the wagon... she has so much torque even in 4th gear! I have to be patent... but I will keep y'all posted with updates as they happen! ;D
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Offline r4pinto

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #22 on: January 10, 2013, 08:22:57 PM »
OK you got me there.. 20s & 30s is cold. I won't even work on my car in that temp..  ;)
Matt Manter
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #23 on: January 11, 2013, 07:43:17 PM »
Ok so far this is what I've found:

I took that belt cover thingy (yes that's the technical term! lol) off so I can get a decent look at the belt and teeth. The belt looks and feels fairly new. No cracks, no dry rubber look... and all the teeth are present and accounted for. I tightened the alternator belt so I can move the belt (thank you HOSS429 for that suggestion). I don't know if I should breathe a sigh of relief or not yet... taking off that cover reminded me of taking all that stuff off my Runabout Wildfire (nightmares to come) to replace her timing belt (good times).  I went ahead and replaced the fuel filter and verified that fuel is coming to the carburetor and  made sure the spark plug wires were connected to whatever they're supposed to be connected to... she still won't start.  :-\


I have spark plug wires, spark plugs, and fuel line (as well as a new timing belt I may or may not need) on order from O'Reilly's.  I did notice, while the cover was off, that the pointers and such to synchronize the timing are different on this car as opposed to the other 2.3 car I have.  I couldn't do the air compressor thing because I don't have a compressor. I do know I'm getting fuel to the carb, though, so there's something else here...
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Offline johnbigman2011

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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #24 on: January 11, 2013, 07:51:20 PM »
Becky, did you check for spark like pinto 5.0 said. Check your distributor cap as well.

Sounds like your not getting any spark??

Glad to hear your fingers thawed out too :D
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #25 on: January 11, 2013, 08:00:59 PM »
No... I need another person to assist me in that.  Maybe tomorrow I can wrangle my mechanic neighbor to help.  ;)

My fingers did thaw... but the sun's down again, and they're getting stiff again.  :o
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #26 on: January 11, 2013, 08:11:12 PM »
I'm glad it's warmed up a bit in the buckeye state. Nice & warm at 60 today.
Matt Manter
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #27 on: January 13, 2013, 06:06:15 PM »
Replaced spark plugs and wires (plugs have proper gap) but she's still not starting.  :(
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #28 on: January 13, 2013, 06:22:27 PM »
Dunno if you said u did or not but have u pulled the distributor & checked it?
Matt Manter
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Re: Another '74 Bites The Dust?
« Reply #29 on: January 13, 2013, 06:29:35 PM »
I haven't yet. That's my next idea. I can't remember what I'm looking for timing-wise, though... and I'm not feeling well physically this whole weekend. I have a four-day weekend coming up next weekend so I'll hopefully be feeling better and can actually think.  Thank you for bringing it up.  :)
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