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post #196 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-08-2017, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Distributor can be seen in this pic (I've since replaced the cap and rotor and wires)




Here's the coil I pulled out of it. The replacement one "looked" like the right one ...but I still have no spark.

The coil reads "Use with an external resistor" (you can see the white resistor on the firewall in the above pic behind the distributor)



And here's the ECU that's mounted on the right side of the engine bay

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post #197 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-08-2017, 11:48 PM
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Ignition Control Module NAPA TP51 | eBay

Back to the Allpar links Bill posted a couple pages back, on the notes on right hand side was a write up/repair/resolder on the TP 51 module...........

I don't think you wasted your money replacing that coil, did you grease the rotor? Wonder if the resistor might be part of the problem?
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Last edited by mnitetrain; 04-08-2017 at 11:55 PM.
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post #198 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 01:08 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mnitetrain View Post

Back to the Allpar links Bill posted a couple pages back, on the notes on right hand side was a write up/repair/resolder on the TP 51 module...........
I'm not seeing that writeup Hank. Which post by Bill???
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post #199 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 08:37 AM
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LA Engines, when the write about lean burn hit the link

Randy Miller wrote: Most people did away with Electronic Lean Burn, I think, because it was new technology and fear of “that electronic black box.”

Back then, mechanics were being introduced to electronic devices never seen before in the automotive industry. I, on the other hand, was into electronics, and it fascinated me to know what was in that black box. I studied the system, learned how it worked, and eventually had local mechanics call me whenever a car came in with this system. Most of the problems turned out to be normal ignition or fuel problems, but, because it had “that black box,” it must be the problem.

As years have gone by, I have found some problems with the computer itself. For example, I started my 1977 Chrysler Newport (with the original 400 Lean Burn engine) on morning and it was running fine and then for no reason it died. I started it again only to find it died a few second later. I traced the problem to the spark computer.

I took it apart, digging out the potting silicone to reveal the circuit boards. After some cleaning, I found a bad solder joint on one of the circuit boards. I got to thinking, what is the biggest problem with electronics in this application? Heat and vibration.

I retouched all solder joints, replaced the electrolytic capacitors, and repotted the boards back into the housing with potting silicone. The silicone was not cheap, but it put the unit back the way it was produced. After reinstalling it, the engine started and ran fine.

If Chrysler had mounted the unit on the body instead of the air cleaner as they did in production, I think a lot of these problems could have been resolved.

Chrysler broke the ground for the first computer controlled engine and I think they would not have had the problems they did back then if they would have taken a few extra steps. All car engines are now computer controlled thanks to their engineering team. Heat and vibration don't mix very well with electronics.

Yes, my old Chrysler still runs with the original ELB system!

2004 300M, LUX, RB1/Sirius Saving flux capacitor for this Inferno Red PEL LOL!!

http://www.motortopia.com/garage/cars/mnitetrain
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post #200 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 09:14 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mnitetrain View Post
LA Engines, when the write about lean burn hit the link

Randy Miller wrote: Most people did away with Electronic Lean Burn, I think, because it was new technology and fear of “that electronic black box.”

Back then, mechanics were being introduced to electronic devices never seen before in the automotive industry. I, on the other hand, was into electronics, and it fascinated me to know what was in that black box. I studied the system, learned how it worked, and eventually had local mechanics call me whenever a car came in with this system. Most of the problems turned out to be normal ignition or fuel problems, but, because it had “that black box,” it must be the problem.

As years have gone by, I have found some problems with the computer itself. For example, I started my 1977 Chrysler Newport (with the original 400 Lean Burn engine) on morning and it was running fine and then for no reason it died. I started it again only to find it died a few second later. I traced the problem to the spark computer.

I took it apart, digging out the potting silicone to reveal the circuit boards. After some cleaning, I found a bad solder joint on one of the circuit boards. I got to thinking, what is the biggest problem with electronics in this application? Heat and vibration.

I retouched all solder joints, replaced the electrolytic capacitors, and repotted the boards back into the housing with potting silicone. The silicone was not cheap, but it put the unit back the way it was produced. After reinstalling it, the engine started and ran fine.

If Chrysler had mounted the unit on the body instead of the air cleaner as they did in production, I think a lot of these problems could have been resolved.

Chrysler broke the ground for the first computer controlled engine and I think they would not have had the problems they did back then if they would have taken a few extra steps. All car engines are now computer controlled thanks to their engineering team. Heat and vibration don't mix very well with electronics.

Yes, my old Chrysler still runs with the original ELB system!
Thanks Hank, but he's talking about repairing the original lean burn circuit board there, not the TP51 ECU module. Remember, all of that lean burn stuff has been done away with and converted on my car.
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post #201 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 01:25 PM
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NAPA sells the Echlin TP 51 from the looks of this.

https://www.napaonline.com/en/p/ECHTP51

As Dan pointed out also it could be the pickup coil in the distributor also.
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post #202 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-09-2017, 04:14 PM
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It appears the Echlin module was a common upgrade for early Mopars to dump the Lean Burn Crapola. Seems people used it on other brands also as it was a good replacement for the original Mopar parts at the time.
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post #203 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Wow.. really Charlene?

So........ I'm off today and planned on working on the car, and trying to figure out why she wouldn't start, after she was running fine the day before yesterday (Saturday) I was letting her idle in the driveway for a few minutes after replacing the cap and rotor, and she stalled. Tried to restart with no luck... I checked for spark at the #1 spark plug and had nothing (checking the old school way).

So I decided to replace the coil... figuring this car is 37 years old, and I'm most likely having multiple issues... the fuel issue seemed to be resolved, as she's been running great with me driving the car all around town all week. Now it could be something else. The "no spark" condition I observed led me to the coil conclusion, so I installed said new coil and still nothing. "Seemed like" I was still not getting any spark. (for the record, a couple weeks ago when I was having issues, I checked for spark and had plenty of spark/arc between the cable and the block when using the old school method))

For good measure, I also replaced the resistor since it was only $5 and they had it in stock when I bought the new coil. Still nothing.. crank crank and crank, but no fire. It was at that point that I gave up for the day and went to bed... taking the Honda to work Sunday for my double shift.

-Monday a.m.-

This morning I get in and turn the key and she starts right up! Again... like nothing ever happened. WTF Charlene!

So is heat playing a role here in my intermittent problem? Maybe the control unit (the TP51 ECU) is getting hot and malfunctioning? It can't be the coil because it did the same thing with a brand new one. I don't see how the ECU could be getting all that "hot" way over there on the fender. Perhaps this weird changing in weather/temp lately is playing a role? (it's been real warm during the days up into the 80's (F) then dropping to the 40's (F) at night)

I'll follow Dan's advise and go buy a spark test light to eliminate the "no spark" from being a figment of my imagination for the next time she decides to not "put out" lol

So let me make a little list here of the things I've done/fixed/replaced on Charlene during the first two months of our relationship:

Purchased: 2/15/17 (the day after Valentine's Day - I'll always remember this day because it was the day the GF pointed out that instead of buying her something nice for V-day, I went and bought myself a Córdoba.......

(...and thus began the curse)


2/16/17 ~ 3/1/17

• New oil and filter - I plan on running conventional in her, but for the time being, I had a 5Qt jug of Mobil1 already in the garage, so I went with that for now. Bought a new Mobil1 filter.

• Replaced various bulbs

3/6/17

• Transmission rebuilt 2 yr/24k mile warranty

3/1/17 - 4/10/17

• Fuel Filter

• New Battery (the car had the wrong battery in it. Bought the correct one and upgraded to HD version)

• Spark plugs (Champion copper plus)

• Wires

• Distributor cap & rotor

• Fixed speedometer (cable was loose behind cluster)

• New AC/Delco idler arm (tie rod ends are next, then wheel bearings, ball joints etc - all the fun stuff I know how to do!)

• Started using Non-ethanol fuel.


I guess the strategy here is to continue throwing parts at her. Next on the list is the ECU itself from that NAPA link (thanks guys!) and then the pickup coil in the distro.
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post #204 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 11:16 AM Thread Starter
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How to figure out what's wrong when everything seems to be working hmmm

Well, Bill said to... so..

*unzips pants*
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post #205 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 12:42 PM
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How to figure out what's wrong when everything seems to be working hmmm

Well, Bill said to... so..

*unzips pants*
Be sure to take video. It's probably never been done on youtube - could go viral.
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post #206 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 01:25 PM
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Whizzzz....Bzzzzttttt....YOW!
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post #207 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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It was the ECU! I called the closest Napa, they had the TP51 in stock... went and picked it up, came back, installed it, and Charlene comes back to life! So sure, that I immediately took off for a drive in her...
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post #208 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 07:51 PM
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It was the ECU! I called the closest Napa, they had the TP51 in stock... went and picked it up, came back, installed it, and Charlene comes back to life! So sure, that I immediately took off for a drive in her...
Woot!! Now for the test drive...............
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post #209 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 08:30 PM
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Go Ed Go!
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post #210 of 276 (permalink) Old 04-10-2017, 09:30 PM
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Will Ed-Doba return with a running Charlene or................................................ ........?
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