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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
1988 B2200 Cranks but won't start. Looks like I'll need to start troubleshooting tomorrow, using aerosol starting fluid or gasoline to determine whether issue is fuel-related or spark-related.

This has happened like twice in last 3 months but each time when I went to troubleshoot, it started right up, hampering my ability to diagnose !!!! D'oh !!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Started up fine several times Thursday.
A couple months ago, I leaned out the idle mixture on the Weber to help increase gas mileage like 2 mpg. I also adjusted the choke heater to make a little richer at cold start and the fast idle screw a tad.

So yesterday I moved the choke heater back to where it was, cleaned the spark plugs, checked inside of distributor, re-attached loose valve cover vent hose (to air cleaner).
Started up fine several times Friday.

So I still need to catch it non-starting to troubleshoot more....
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
OK, today I had a dental appointment, the B2200 wouldn't start (so I drove my 1998 Frontier). Upon my return, it still wouldn't start, so at least I had opportunity to investigate. I turned on ignition and got 12 volts positive at coil positive terminal, good. Then I set up my spark test light and my remote starter, turned ignition to "run" and cranked the engine: no spark. I even set up my timing light on a spark plug wire and then on the coil wire: no spark. I looked up how to test the coil on the online manual, primary (1.4 ohms) and secondary resistances (8.43 kohms) were within specifications. So I pulled the pickup coil/ignitor from the distributor (I had replaced the internal oil seal a full two years ago), separated the pickup coil from the ignitor and tested the resistance of the pickup coil, again in specification (1000 ohms). I'm not able to test the ignitor part myself, but did notice that its bottom metal surface was coated with clean engine oil. So I wiped that clean, and also wiped clean the corresponding surface inside the distributor.


On a lark I decided to re-assemble everything inside the distributor and then I tried to start it, and it started right up, and started quicker than it has for many months!!! So I wonder if the oil film on the bottom of the ignitor was the cause....anyway, this is the factory distributor at 236K miles, I decided I should order one from Rock Auto and use my existing one as a spare...

Maybe if I had a better nose I could've picked up gas smell from the exhaust while cranking, but that is not a talent I have.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Today I installed the brand new Wai Global distributor DST882 from Rock Auto, box was torn on the inside, distributor looked OK. No instructions, no labels on the two distributor wires as to which of blue or black was positive. Anyway, set to TDC #1 (did NOT do anything to the timing belt other than take off the top cover), seated/clocked the distributor rotor to just before 9 o'clock, had to use a shorter distributor mount bolt as the new distributor plate is 8mm thinner. Anyway, no spark noticed with timing light or spark test tool, and truck would not start. Also spark wire boots don't fit as well as on the factory cap. I even tried stabbing the distributor "off" one gear tooth each way, still no start. I'll be calling Wai Global tomorrow.....and E-mailing their Tech Help...wonder if I'll even get a return call or E-mail....
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
4 hours have passed, and no phone or E-mail response from Wai Global/WPS help. So I re-installed the old distributor and the truck starts right up. So I'm sending the distributor back to RockAuto for full refund and will let Wai Global/WPS deal with it that way. The Wai Global DST882 mount base was 8mm narrower, so if one didn't use a shorter 8mm x 1.25mm bolt, would've cracked that front piece that bolts to the cylinder head (no shorter bolt was included). The two DST882 distributor wires were not labeled as to positive and negative on the coil, and there were no instructions at all. The DST882 distributor cap recesses for the spark wires were 20mm as compared to 25mm on the stock distributor cap, so the spark plug wire boots could not be installed snugly.

I may consider a new distributor from a different supplier through Amazon, as returns are easier. https://www.amazon.com/Distributor-...9Y2xpY2tSZWRpcmVjdCZkb05vdExvZ0NsaWNrPXRydWU=
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Update: Three weeks later I traveled 100 miles to do some fix up at the house and also to bring my B2200 back to Phoenix until spring. Well once again the B2200 would crank but not start. I then confirmed no spark using my spark tester light.

Then I was stooooopid - I tapped on both the coil and the distributor with a hammer and the truck started right up. Stupid because I should have done that one at a time, maybe could've isolated this. So I think it's time to replace both; coil is about $30, and new ignitor and new pickup will cost almost as much as a brand-new distributor.

So I'm planning to attempt a 100 mile trip like this. On the other hand I've had such non-spark issue for a few months now but never had an issue once it started.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Replace the cheaper COIL first, then see if it happens again. If it does, then it is probably your distributor.
Well, the B2200 drove fine the entire 106 miles; made 2 stops once I reached Phoenix. First stop was to pick up an Edelbrock #22739 ignition coil at O'Reilly, which I already installed, direct fit. Now to take Mrs. Cusser out for dinner, and jump her. She says the 2014 Yukon tows 2 horses like a dream (that gets her horny).

"Canister Coil; 1.45 Ohm; Oil Filled; Edelbrock Ignition Coil #22739 is a universal 12-volt canister-style coil designed as a high-quality direct bolt-on replacement for OEM ignition coils. This advanced coil has a primary resistance of 1.4 ohms with an output of 42,000 volts. Internally, each Edelbrock Coil features heavy-duty primary and secondary windings for higher energy and greater spark that can help to provide quicker starts with improved idle quality. With a durable oil-filled housing, Edelbrock Coils are resistant to heat, shock and vibration with an effective operating range of 0 to 6,500 RPM. Resistant to Heat; Shock; Vibration. Durable Oil Filled Housing. Operating Range of 0-6500 RPM. "
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Replace the cheaper COIL first, then see if it happens again. If it does, then it is probably your distributor.

Well, the B2200 drove fine the entire 106 miles; made 2 stops once I reached Phoenix. First stop was to pick up an Edelbrock #22739 ignition coil at O'Reilly, which I already installed, direct fit. Drove the B2200 and took Mrs. Cusser out to dinner.
Update: Went out mid-day today, B2200 again would crank but wouldn't start. This time I tapped twice on the distributor, then tried to start, and then engine started right up. So looks like an intermittent distributor; brand-new distributor arriving Nov. 25 -28.

In the meantime, I'll tap the distributor if needed on first start of the day. Since I'm smarter now I won't tell Mrs. Cusser that there's an issue on the B2200 or she'll be reluctant to ride in it. But like I said before - and knock on wood - it hasn't had any stalling or same-day non-start once started on an individual day....
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Could be. I ordered an ignition module, should be at O'Reilly tomorrow. Truck got me to the bar, then to Walmart on the way home today, no issues. Will be interesting if it starts on its own tomorrow morning....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Update: this morning the B2200 started right up. No I did not pick up the new ignition control module from local O'Reilly store.

I remembered that I'd purchased a used distributor at the parts yard for $10 a decade ago; I'd tried that then (for a possible spare or future use), but it didn't work, but I saved it (and had used that as practice to change out my internal oil seal on my working distributor).

Today I found it, took it a little apart, tested its pickup coil as bad, but I marked its ignition control module, then installed that into my B2200 distributor, and it started right up. So I'll be trying that ignition control module for the next few days (carrying my other ignition control module and some tools to change it in the crossbed tool box of my truck). So maybe by substitution I may be able to determine the intermittent failure to start issue.

Now: when the brand-new distributor arrives from Amazon in a few days, will I:
(1) install that new distributor
(2) keep the new distributor as a spare
(3) return it to Amazon
Only time will tell.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You'll keep it as a spare......if I know you well enough.....:)
Probably right - if the "parts yard" ignition control module continues to work 100%, likely the brand-new distributor will become a spare. If I can spend $33.3K on a pristine 2014 Yukon XL Denali for Mrs. Cusser, I can splurge for myself with a back-up distributor !!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
update: now Friday, and so far no issues starting at all the entire week, so good !!!

We'll be taking the B2200 tonight, and if all goes according to plan this weekend I'll pull off the Weber and adapters and finally address the vacuum leak by sanding and re-sealing the adapters with new gaskets (new Permatex Aviation, new blue Loctite and proper torque on the fasteners.

When I installed the Weber kit in 2005, we didn't know that the Weber adapters needed to be sanded flat before installation, so the time is now !!! It will be interesting to see "how flat" the adapter plates really are.

I have new gaskets too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
OK, was time to ensure that the Weber adapters were flat with no cracks and re-seal the adapters. In 2011 when I had rough running after removing the carburetor in an engine refresh; so I made my own gaskets from rubberized sheet gasket because I didn't have any new gaskets or any available locally, and would've taken several days to order. So I used my homemade gaskets and purchased an adapter gasket set for future use. So I found the gasket kit, Redline Weber #99005.675
Food Cuisine Baked goods Gas Dish


Surprisingly my adapter plates appeared to be pretty straight, but I did sand them using 180 wet/dry on a sheet of glass. There were no cracks from overtightening as I'd torqued them before as per Weber/Redline installation instructions. The carburetor mounting studs "might have" protruded and pushed the adapter up a hair, so I sanded that part smooth with the adapter surface.
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I used Permatex Aviation on the new gaskets, a thin film. Lower adapter to the intake manifold gets torqued to 12 ft lbs.
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Upper adapter gets torqued to 6 ft lbs (72 inch lbs).

I used 1/2" i.d. oil hose (left over from my VW) as a new hose from valve cover over to the underside of my air cleaner.
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Now: when the brand-new distributor arrives from Amazon in a few days, will I:
(#1) install that new distributor
(#2) keep the new distributor as a spare
(#3) return it to Amazon
Only time will tell.....
Answer is #1. I installed the new Wai Global DST882 distributor today - important to use a shorter 18mm bolt (8mm x 1.25mm thread) as the stock distributor retaining bolt is at least 8mm longer for the thicker mount base of the stock distributor and would crack the front engine housing if tightened without noticing that.

I'll be keeping the original distributor with the parts-yard ignition control module as my spare.

I also changed the oil and filter today, at 228,717 miles.
 
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