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HARD TO START

 
57wazs
I love my Chevy Chevette!
Posts: 1
Joined: 09/10
Posted: 09/04/10 11:44 AM

I OWN A 1957 CHEVY BEL AIR CARBURATED 350 WITH 700R TRANS. THE PROBLEM THAT I HAVE IS THAT I WENT FROM BREAKER POINTS TO A READY TO RUN HEI DISTRIBUTOR. NOW I TURN THE KEY TO START AN IT DOESN'T START RIGHT UP. UPON RELEASING THE KEY IT THEN STARTS OR IT MAY NOT START AT ALL OR IT MAY FLOOD OUT. WHAT COULD BE THE PROBLEM?  

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waynep7122
I mow my lawn and find Chevys
Posts: 1130
Joined: 08/09
Posted: 09/04/10 02:35 PM

this is not an abnormal problem to find...

let me explain... with point type ignitions need reduced voltage to run so the points don't burn... but require full battery voltage to create a hotter spark to start the car...

so .. the wire from the bulkhead connector to the coil is a fiberglass wrapped resistance wire... this reduces the voltage a proper amount...

there is a second wire on the positive side of the coil ... with normal plastic insulation.. this is the bypass wire.. it runs to the R terminal at the 3 o clock position on the starter solenoid..

so.. when the key is in the run position.. the power is coming from the ignition switch...

during cranking.. the power circuit is broken in the ignition switch and the power for the coil comes from the R terminal on the starter... since there is only conventional wire on that side of the circuit.. it gets full battery voltage..


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there are a few ways to fix this problem...      you can use the resistance and the bypass wire to control a relay... pin 85  with the pin 86 grounded..  pin 30 gets battery power.. and pin 87A feeds the HEI battery terminal..


you can also get under the dash board... i will have to verify this for a 57... and use the ignition 2 or acc 1 power to control the relay that powers the HEi.... this should get you run and cranking power to your relay...


i will have to look...  but if the 57 uses a conventional GM ignition switch... the later versions are already set up to power HEI and do not break the IGN 1 circuit when the switch is in the crank position...

one thing... HEIs take more power than a conventional point type ignition...  they use larger wires... so the coil can saturate faster...    you can go shopping at the junk yard and pick up some GM labeled plastic relays off newer models with sockets and short lengths of harness....


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so... take a test light...   take the coil cover off the hei cap... so you can access the wires to the coil...  stick a test light into the bat side... ground the clip....   work the key through positions...  bet that when you turn the key to the run position... the light comes on... and when you turn to the crank position. it goes. out...

this is where you are having your problem...

post what you find.. now that you understand how the circuit operates...

if you intend on installing a load dropping relay for the HEI...   think about doing the same for the starter solenoid circuit...   this will change the way the car starts... much better...  all the new cars do it.. get the 50+ amp load out of the cranking circuit...  

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skyeking
I mow my lawn and find Chevys
Posts: 2738
Joined: 08/09
Posted: 09/04/10 05:45 PM

Hi there,
 I have found out by hitting the starter for 3 or
 4 seconds at a time you can improve the hard start
 situation.. There is nothing new with this procedure
 in MANY cases I have encountered in my experiences.
  Try it. It costs 0000...Skyeking  
skyeking

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chevman24
I have an SS396 tatoo
Posts: 430
Joined: 08/08
Posted: 09/05/10 07:07 AM

I had the same issues when i put an HEI in my old 71 Chevy pickup.  I tried connecting it through the starter and it wouldnt start and would flood. I just hooked up the power lead to a 12 volt source, that has power with the ignition on and it worked perfectly.  

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