76 Westy stalling very intermittent

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Hubster43
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76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Hubster43 » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:04 am

I have been having an ongoing issue with our bus that we have owned for the last 30 years. For the past year or so we have had some very, very intermittent stalling issues. I may happen on the average about every 200 or 300 miles. Every time I think I have it fixed, it proves me wrong a week or two later. Two weeks ago I installed a new wire from the coil to the rotor. I thought maybe it had a short or a bad connection. This morning on the way into work, I made the mistake of mentioning that I thought I had finally tracked down the problem. Bad move on my part, as the bus stalled in rush hour traffic in the left lane. It has never failed to start up again after a few minutes and this morning was the same. 3 minutes on the side of the road and it started up and drove fine the final 15 miles. Every once in a while we will get a lurch during accelerating and that usually means it is going to stall in the near future. I have wondered if it is possible that there is some debris in the tank. I have gone thru a couple of fill ups between episodes.

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Amskeptic
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Amskeptic » Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:31 pm

Hubster43 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:04 am
I have been having an ongoing issue with our bus that we have owned for the last 30 years. For the past year or so we have had some very, very intermittent stalling issues. I may happen on the average about every 200 or 300 miles. Every time I think I have it fixed, it proves me wrong a week or two later. Two weeks ago I installed a new wire from the coil to the rotor. I thought maybe it had a short or a bad connection. This morning on the way into work, I made the mistake of mentioning that I thought I had finally tracked down the problem. Bad move on my part, as the bus stalled in rush hour traffic in the left lane. It has never failed to start up again after a few minutes and this morning was the same. 3 minutes on the side of the road and it started up and drove fine the final 15 miles. Every once in a while we will get a lurch during accelerating and that usually means it is going to stall in the near future. I have wondered if it is possible that there is some debris in the tank. I have gone thru a couple of fill ups between episodes.
Does it stall at-speed dumb-dead done, or does it cough and catch a little on its way down?
Colin
BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,660 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,845 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 121,400 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
Alexus - 91 Lexus LS400 . . . 92,435 miles

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Hubster43
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Hubster43 » Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:28 pm

There does not seem to be any coughing or stuttering. There have been times going downhill where it will stall and I wouldn’t even know it if I didn’t look down and see the engine light come on. If I give it gas or anything at that point nothing happens until we coast to a stop and I get it to restart after a couple of tries. Once or twice when it stalls I have been able to turn off the key and restart the engine as we coast along with the clutch engaged. Tried that late at night one time and had a bit of a scare forgetting that the headlights turn off with the key.

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SlowLane
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by SlowLane » Sat Oct 13, 2018 12:21 pm

Hubster43 wrote:
Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:28 pm
Once or twice when it stalls I have been able to turn off the key and restart the engine as we coast along with the clutch engaged. Tried that late at night one time and had a bit of a scare forgetting that the headlights turn off with the key.
Make sure that the steering column isn't locking when you turn off the key, else you could be in for more than just a bit of a scare.
'81 Canadian Westfalia (2.0L, manual), now Californiated

"They say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance."
- Terry Pratchett

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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by 1funbug » Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:41 am

I had a bad coil that acted like this. Bentley details how to test your coil's resistance to determine if it's failed.

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Amskeptic
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Oct 21, 2018 7:25 am

1funbug wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 5:41 am
I had a bad coil that acted like this. Bentley details how to test your coil's resistance to determine if it's failed.

Good call. Heat-related failure that cools down and comes back "on line."
Colin
BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,660 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,845 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 121,400 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
Alexus - 91 Lexus LS400 . . . 92,435 miles

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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by greg in ga » Sun Dec 15, 2019 12:54 pm

Mind if I horn in on this discussion? I have a very similar issue. When my symptom (clean cut out, no coughing or sputtering) happens, I've checked and I'm not getting enough any voltage (4 volts +- 4 volts)at the coil. I've replaced the ignition switch (which doesn't mean much but...) what else is between the ignition switch and the coil? I'm close to running a new wire from the ign to the coil.
_________________
1969 Beetle
1974 Westy 1800cc FI conversion

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asiab3
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by asiab3 » Mon Dec 16, 2019 6:17 pm

greg in ga wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 12:54 pm
Mind if I horn in on this discussion? I have a very similar issue. When my symptom (clean cut out, no coughing or sputtering) happens, I've checked and I'm not getting enough any voltage (4 volts +- 4 volts)at the coil. I've replaced the ignition switch (which doesn't mean much but...) what else is between the ignition switch and the coil? I'm close to running a new wire from the ign to the coil.
Have you run a (fused) wire directly from the battery to coil + to make sure the current path is the problem?

Which car are you speaking of?

'74 bus:

Image


'69 bug:

Image

On either car, disconnect the battery and give your fuse box and connections a nice cleaning and connection test. Colin has a nice writeup on it somewhere around here…
Robbie
1969 bus, "Buddy."
145k miles with me.
322k miles on Earth.

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Amskeptic
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Amskeptic » Mon Dec 16, 2019 9:30 pm

greg in ga wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 12:54 pm
Mind if I horn in on this discussion? I have a very similar issue. When my symptom (clean cut out, no coughing or sputtering) happens, I've checked and I'm not getting enough any voltage (4 volts +- 4 volts)at the coil. I've replaced the ignition switch (which doesn't mean much but...) what else is between the ignition switch and the coil? I'm close to running a new wire from the ign to the coil.
Hi Greg, like Robbie suggested, do a quicky test run of wire from the battery + to the coil +.

That 4 volts you read may not be the positive wiring, it could also be a cruddy ground path back to the battery. You'd check transaxle ground strap, battery ground strap ...?
Check the reverse light wire/double relay black wire that leads from the coil +, they like to bleed voltage at the clip that holds the inline fuse to the side of the engine compartment over there on the left. You might also check the big honking white plastic molex connector at the steering column bracket that takes in ignition switch wires and distributes them to the vehicle harness.
Colin
BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,660 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,845 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 121,400 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
Alexus - 91 Lexus LS400 . . . 92,435 miles

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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by greg in ga » Tue Dec 17, 2019 5:51 pm

It's on the bus. The wire from the bat to the coil is how I've been running it for the past few months, being too lazy to fix it. The connector might be where I start. All the ground straps etc were replaced recently. There isn't much on this thing that hasn't been repaired/fixed.What's weird is that the coil voltage is the only thing that's affected. The starter circuit works great.

You might also check the big honking white plastic molex connector at the steering column bracket that takes in ignition switch wires and distributes them to the vehicle harness.
_________________
1969 Beetle
1974 Westy 1800cc FI conversion

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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by greg in ga » Sat Dec 21, 2019 4:08 pm

Success, (we hope) the culprit was a loose wire behind the fuse box. Clyde is a bloodhound when it comes to electrical gremlins. lol
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1969 Beetle
1974 Westy 1800cc FI conversion

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Amskeptic
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Re: 76 Westy stalling very intermittent

Post by Amskeptic » Sat Dec 21, 2019 8:54 pm

greg in ga wrote:
Sat Dec 21, 2019 4:08 pm
Success, (we hope) the culprit was a loose wire behind the fuse box. Clyde is a bloodhound when it comes to electrical gremlins. lol

Good! I enjoy electrical work when it is sunny and above 70*.
Colin
BobD - 78 Bus . . . 112,660 miles
Chloe - 70 bus . . . 206,845 miles
Naranja - 77 Westy . . . 121,400 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . . 55,570 miles
Alexus - 91 Lexus LS400 . . . 92,435 miles

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