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Old 03-04-2016, 02:40 PM   #1
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67 289 Dies

67 - 289; mild cam, edelbrock intake 289 performer; headers; newish Holley 570 4bbl carb; AT; new starter relay; Pertronix ignition; Accel plugs, power brakes.

It starts fine, warms up. Then after driving maybe 15-20 minutes, it dies at the light, but not often. But it starts again, with a little of struggle, but before the light changes, then no problems.

It idles around 800 and the timing is set to around 15 degrees BTDC, vacuum is about 20 in Hg and fuel pressure is around 6 psi.

There seems to be a little gas smell after it dies. Could it be electrical, dies, then still dumps some gas in the engine, before completely stopping. No adjustments have been made to the carb other than idle.
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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-05-2016, 03:39 AM   #2
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Power brakes? And how long has the cam been in there? Any changes that you made before this started happening?
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Old 03-05-2016, 05:13 AM   #3
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To take a shot in the dark here, in my limited experience, if everything runs great but intermittently dies, that tends to point to either a carb issue like a stuck float or an electrical issue of some kind.

I'm trying to thing of what else would cause it to die without showing some other sign of degraded performance first like rough idle or hesitation.
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Old 03-05-2016, 05:39 AM   #4
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Might be the distributor going out. I know on the EFI 5.0s the distributors can cause similar problems and then completely take out other ignition components.
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:07 AM   #5
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Does it still have points & condenser? Try changing the condenser if it still has that type distributor. Could be defective coil also. You say you smell fuel, check float level on carb too.
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:33 AM   #6
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Carb is only about 6 months old. It's not points and condenser. Not sure about cam age, it was in it when I got it about 4 yrs ago.
Replaced cap and rotor about 3 months ago, but not distributor or ignition.


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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:34 AM   #7
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Also coil is 2 weeks old.


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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-05-2016, 09:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggiesrok View Post
Also coil is 2 weeks old.


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A bad pickup in the distributor will fry a new coil real quick. I went through 3 of them in 2 weeks when the PIP went out in my dizzy. I'm not saying just throw parts at it but the symptoms point to the pickup being a possibility.
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:00 AM   #9
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I think it's getting flooded
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:07 AM   #10
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I think it's getting flooded
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Old 03-06-2016, 02:34 PM   #11
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Thing is is not every light. It's like it happens once, then it's fine.
Distributor is not original, but appears to be fairly old, like the ignition box.

I think any flooding is due to electrical issue, since the carb is brand new and hasn't had any issues. Holley seem adjusted correctly right out of the box. Also is not consistent like you would expect from a flooding issue. But not ruling it out.


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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-06-2016, 09:30 PM   #12
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Update:
Now it won't start at all. Just turns over. Opened dust cap and found a rivet. (Rotor was mangled when cap was pushed by air cleaner while adjusting timing). Apparently this rivet stuck around. Not sure how much damage it caused, everything looks ok, but I think the gap between the stator and the HEI is too large. It also looks like some of it was missing.
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Chevy runs deep, don't step in Chevy.
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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-06-2016, 10:31 PM   #13
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That sucks. At least you found your Gremlin. Have you checked to see if you can find parts for the distributor? Somebody out there must have some we hope.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:41 PM   #14
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I'm sure parts are out there...maybe even a rebuilt distributor if you need one.
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Old 03-06-2016, 11:44 PM   #15
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No adjustment on those? I thought there was, but you are right that the gap spore as to be pretty big. I converted mine stock points dis. To electrical and it was supposed to be set at like 30 thousands I think
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Old 03-07-2016, 12:55 AM   #16
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This gap is about 1/4 inch. I'm a mile from 30 thousands unfortunately.


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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-07-2016, 09:01 AM   #17
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Stock gap on points is .016-.018 Don't know what gap should be on your electronic dist. but looks awful wide from the picture. Does it start and run now?
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Old 03-07-2016, 05:23 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Stock gap on points is .016-.018 Don't know what gap should be on your electronic dist. but looks awful wide from the picture. Does it start and run now?
Not starting anymore

I think I'm going to go with Pertronix Flame Thrower Distributor. It's $150 less than the MSD. I can still use the ignition box I have or just skip it and use only the coil. I might just go with the coil and not the Duraspark ignition box.
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289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-07-2016, 08:58 PM   #19
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Don't use MSD products period. MSD=Might Suddenly Die/My Spark Disappeared.

I use OEM or Crane for all my ignition stuffs.
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Old 03-07-2016, 09:05 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Don't use MSD products period. MSD=Might Suddenly Die/My Spark Disappeared.

I use OEM or Crane for all my ignition stuffs.

Would be cool if he could find an old Centrifugal Advance distributor that Motorcraft used to make. I used to run those back in the day.
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Old 03-07-2016, 09:26 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scottydsntknow View Post
Don't use MSD products period. MSD=Might Suddenly Die/My Spark Disappeared.

I use OEM or Crane for all my ignition stuffs.

I read a lot of things about MSD being expensive and some reliability issues. That pushed me to Pertronix.


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chevy runs deep, Don't step in chevy!

289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-08-2016, 10:25 PM   #22
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Installed new Pertronix.
Now it won't start and backfires through the carb with flames. Transferred wires one at a time and the timing should be close enough to start. Moved it either way and it still won't start. I guess flames indicate that I'm getting spark. Plugs are only a few months old, maybe the wires are bad. It does say not to use solid core wires, which I didn't think I had, but I'll check that next and double check the firing order.
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chevy runs deep, Don't step in chevy!

289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-08-2016, 11:18 PM   #23
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Ok never mind.
Got in a hurry in the dark. Plug 1 wire was hiding under the heater hoses and I grabbed Plug 2 to transfer from old cap. Started from scratch and placed wires on cap.
It started right up and sounds like a beast. Smooth all the way to around 5k. I took out the old Duraspark ignition box and set it up with the coil only. I think the old box was beyond useful.
Thanks guys for all the help. It's great to be able to get feedback from people with the same cars.
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chevy runs deep, Don't step in chevy!

289 - Holley 4150 570cfm; Performer intake; mild cam; MSD HEI; 302 heads; Roller Tips; Hedman Tri-Y headers; H-pipe w/Flowmaster 40's; 9 in posi 3.50; 205/50-17F; 225/50-17R.
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Old 03-09-2016, 10:50 PM   #24
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Nice!
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Old 03-10-2016, 06:47 AM   #25
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Its always something like that. Been there...
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Old 03-10-2016, 10:14 AM   #26
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Glad you found the problem and it wasn't too bad!
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:09 AM   #27
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Always remember that on an engine (of any kind) there are only 3 problems possible :
- air/fuel ratio
- spark/timing
- leaks

About the Pertronix, I think that was my best buy on my 66! For the price, the change was great!
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