Am I crazy? 90q ignition problem ALMOST fixed

nde264 at nde264 at
Fri Aug 23 12:22:35 EDT 2002

I have narrowed down the intermittent ignition loss problem that I have been
having to the hall sensor in the distributor.  I have gotten NO spark there for
the past 3 days when I have tried to start the car.  At first, letting the car
sit for a while would result in it starting again.

I bought a brand new distributor, and only being 99% sure that it was the hall
sensor, I decided not to "install" the distributor until I had tested it first.
 I turned the ignition key to run, then plugged in the new distributor hall
sensor to the connector that was on the distributor still connected to the car.
 I spun the shaft and sure enough, I heard the engine sparking.  I pulled the
ignition coil->distributor wire and set it on the block, and watched the sparks
as I turned the shaft.

Question #1:  Immediately after plugging in the new hall sensor, there was a
series of quick clicks lasting about 1 second total coming from the left side
of the engine compartment (facing the back of the car).  Series of operations,
turn key to run, unplug old hall sensor, plug in new, clicks.  Does this always
happen when the ignition is turned on/what could be clicking/is this normal/am
I crazy?

I pulled the old distributor out of the car, and plugged in the hall sensor,
and spun the rotor as with the previous experiment.  No spark.  Things are
narrowed down to the hall sensor now.

I have not yet installed the new distributor for fear that I may still blow it
up.  The distributor in the car now was installed 400 miles ago and was
acquired from Chris Semple used.

Question #2:  Is it possible to blow up the hall sensor due to a wiring fault?
When the ignition is switched on, the voltage across pins 1 and 3 of the plug
for the hall sensor shows 10 or so volts, the bentley calls for over 9, even
when the car has died and will not restart.

Question #3:  When turning on the ignition this morning, I heard a series of
buzzes coming from near the fuel computer in the passenger footwell.  Each buzz
lasts for about a second, and they recur about every 3 to 5 seconds.  Is this

Part of me is saying, just put the distributor in, start the car, and you'll be
fine.  But I've already lost one known good hall sensor, and I don't want to
have to replace this again in, well, ever.


Nathan Engelbert
89 90q

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