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1979 Continental Hot Start Issues

Hello Bill,

I have a 79 Continental Collector Series W/ the 400. After the engine is at operating temp and I let her sit for a few minutes, when I go to restart her I get the (RA RA RA) slow turn over like it's either too hot or the timing is too far advanced or maybe a problem with the starter. I have replaced the starter,battery, checked the temp with a digital thermometer, checked the cables. Checked the timing and just recently the timing chain and gears. ( Motor has over 200,000 I'm sure and it was very loose) I thought for sure this was my problem but alas it's the same as before. I have over 30 tears as a professional mechanic but this has got me stumped. Other than that she runs just fine. Please help.

Thanx,

Jim

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Hello Jim,

Welcome to our blog. Some of those slow cranking hot start conditions can be a real pain. The vehicles of the seventies were just getting started with fancy ignition and engine controls and were evolving constantly. You stated that you have a new battery, starter and that the cables are o/k. I would first want to make absolutely sure that the battery is the correct size for that 400 cid engine and that is fully charged and PROPERLY load tested. The starter as well should be tested HOT for a high draw and the cables and any engine ground straps should be carefully re-inspected. I know that you believe that all of the above is o/k BUT new parts do fail and if by chance something simple with the above is missed or ignored you may be led down some expensive and time consuming path.

Another item to consider is the base timing. Dampers on some engines are known to slip on their rubber internals which then can cause a wrong timing reading. If your engine was over advanced, hard hot cranking and starting could be a result. The original FoMoCo DURASPARK ignition and engine management on that engine was designed carefully for that engine along with several sensors and vacuum items. All of these management parts contribute to the operation of the engine. If you do remove or bypass any items or replace any electronics with aftermarket parts, you should be careful with choice of brand name and know what you are doing.

You also state Jim that your engine has over 200,000 miles on it. I would be interested to know what the engine oil pressure is with the engine at HOT operating temperature. I hope that the above suggestions help and that you find something simple. If you are still having problems, post back to us with that Hot oil pressure if it is low and I will tell about the strange hot start problem and repair that I had to do on my 70 Sedan.

Sincerely,

Bill