IT'S ALIVE!

Wow... I must say, I never thought the sound of an engine starting would cause me so much happiness. Today, finally, after many months and several failed attempts, The Beast awoke.
The nearly catastrophic fire back on December 28th, 2005, destroyed most of the wiring harness. Thanks to Shades (at dot) for the replacement. I'd installed most of it months ago, but got stuck when I broke the bolt off in my tranny that holds the kickdown cable in place. Because I'm moving a week from today, it was imperative that I got the truck running this weekend. I have to have the tranny rebuilt, and hope to have it towed to the shop this coming Monday, the 22nd.
After replacing about everything in the distributor, it wouldn't spark worth a damn. Connecting a screwdriver to a plug wire and holding it against ground gave very little spark. I received a used distributor in the mail that including some useful parts. I only ended up using the ignition module though. I installed it, but left off the harness that went to the ESC (it came with that much coveted harness). I used the connector from the old harness and jumped pins 1 and 3 together, and plugged it, thus keeping the mod (ESC bypass) internal to the distributor.
This time around I installed the grounding strap that runs from the body of the coil to the middle pin on the connector that runs to the condensor. I now understand that not having it there, not only caused no spark, but probably took out the 3 prior ignition modules I'd tried. I checked and found that there was indeed a grounding strap running from the passenger-side head to the firewall, and the bolt holding it in place was loose. I tightened it.
So I crawled into the driver's seat, as I had so many times in the last 2 weeks, and tried to start it up. Much to my surprised, it took a deep breath and shot out a huge plume of smoke from the tailpipe. It didn't want to run, but I feathered the gas pedal until it was able to maintain an idle. I got out and adjusted the timing a bit to get it running a little better.
So I've cut it off, and I'm waiting on the engine, as well as the outside temperature to cool off some before I head out to clean up and secure the wiring under the hood.
Monday, (provided I get it running well enough) it'll be towed to the tranny shop. They'll drill out and re-tap the hole for the tranny kickdown cable, and while they have it open, change the speedo gear for the 3.73 gears I had installed when the rear end was rebuilt.
It's been a long road, but I can finally see the end in sight.
Thanks to everyone for all the help in getting it up and running again.
~jp
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Very cool , Atta boy. I cant wait to get my beast running now. thanks for the motivation.

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