86 ALCL help

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i really can't just turn over the car to a dealer and say fix it. pride and money. the last time i did that it effectively cost me $1300 for a new battery
they will take advantage of us
this time i noticed overnight a fluttering of performance as if one cylinder wasn't firing i chked the plugs and found oil leaks from the valve covers onto the plugs cleaned them and problem is still there
chkd for vacuum line leaks; none that i could see then on the 3rd day, the Service Engine flashing lite, sometimes
chkd code: 42 timing
added info: years ago my gas mileage numbers were screwed up, but didn't care, unless it meant ECM bad.
pls, tell me i don't have to hand my baby over to them and that i can just buy a $25 part (still laughing myself) and plug it in to solve all problems.
ssome
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let me ask an easier question
i have platinum plugs in it which are supposed to last a lifetime. could a broken or faulty plug give a code 42 spark timing err? i chkd a couple of them and they looked fine, but it has been 15 yrs for them. starts easy.
ssome

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nothing last a life-time (except maybe bad-luck?) anyway, check the condition of your wires.
g'luck
--
"Key"
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thanks, i did chk the wires and found the oil from valve cover leaks tightened them, and cleaned off the wires which look fine cleaned the plug connections (in and out) and outside of plugs for oil problem still there
will replace plugs with new platinum unless there is now an improved plug for the '86 not looking forward to this task, esp right side, esp back one. what in hell were they thinking? at least we don't have to remove the engine to get to the back ones
ssome

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might not be your problem ? however, a wire can be breaking down and still look acceptable.
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always do the easy and cheap stuff first
put in sp wire, dist cap, coil, rotor, plugs, electronics points module and the ESC all connetions to ALL SENSORS.
there is also an external timing 'set' connector, used when setting the timing
put in new parts one at a time and check results
don't ignore things like bad fuel, fuel pressure,
I chased a an intermittent sp wire for 2 years.
if compression and vacuum checks shows the engine ok, fuel and pressure ok, wiring good, the only thing left are senors and ecm
if it was the ecm your car will definately not run
g...luck
There is also

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I have to disagree with this from personal experience. I had an aftermarket chip go flakey on me after having it for 8 or 9 years. The car would run perfectly, then suddly surge, rumble, hesitate, and sometimes cut off. After going through several checks, I finally got down to the chip and put the stock one back in. Poof! problem solved.
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Right, i cleaned the wires of obvious oil secured all conns, looked for vacuum leaks and now i just bought a set of Bosch Plat +4 at $6 each ! code 42 is intermittent, spark timing
thanks,
ssome

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please explain further "the ESC all connections to ALL SENSORS"
ssome

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ssome wrote:

Do you have a Helm service manual? There's a set troubleshooting flowchart to follow for each Engine code. Otherwise you could just be chasing your tail.
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i have the Chevy manual there is a flowchart for err 42 elec spark timing (EST) and it seems to be dependent on whether the problem is intermittent or not and from this it will be either the ignition module or ECM
a few years ago i had a code 44 err, lean exhaust indication and snugged up all vacuum lines and the problem went away. don't know if this has any bearing on the case at hand.
off to change the plugs, see above, got plenty of beer and cuss words i only chkd a couple of them, so looking at all of them should tell me if one or two are not firing
thanks,
ssome

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ssome wrote:

The checklist/flowchart almost always lists vacuum leak is one of the first things to check before you go through the chart. The chart also branches on whether or not the code is intermittent.
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Eventful afternoon in Seattle stage 1 4 plugs 4 beers and naturally i took the easy side first, the left. front to back: 1 and 3 were amber; 2 where there was an oil leak from the valve cover, VC, above it was a little bit more brown, but reasonable. however, 4, back left, was heavily oiled, maybe fired.
about this time neighbors who didn't even know me stopped by to laugh at my attack on the right side physical impossibilities. Something about who do you think you are going to pick up in that car at your age, .... 65. Even asked if i remember why i chased nice women. i kept working and explained that i did buy it 20 yrs ago.
which brings me to this: i had an '84 that all kinds of problems cropping up, but i was forced into getting the plan to take care of ills (and that was a salvation on a new model). But, i did decide (made too much money then) that i needed the '86 which had the right brakes. better car, but bad move.
Back to the right side joke. turns out that most of the problem is the air conditioning. there is a oblique strut support for stability that forces the air unit 4 inches to the proximal which screws us good guys up. Design people should be forced for at least one year to work on their cars to see what havoc they have wrought.
but i digress, back again to the right side joke. i really want to complain to the SOB that made the plugs so tight. Oops, that might be me. Maybe, the heat and time made them that way.... sure.
More beer to keep me calm, but the cuss words, quietly at first, just spilled out. the upshot of it was that the right side back plug was caked with not just oil, but sludge - this plug was not firing. the front 3 were acceptable.
Now, why does this happen? this is a design problem. the back plugs have to be the hottest and have always been a problem since racing began. why are we seeing this in a production car? why aren't we told of this? why isn't there a fix?
i am also on my 3rd alternator replacement in 31K miles have we been screwed for trusting them?
did it run better? yes. but, not perfect. 90% better. wires?
thanks for all your help and i hope it continues with this added info to not only help me but thousands of others who read this N:L. keep up the good work.
ssome

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Snip

All parts have to be somewhere, some go on first and some go on last, the ones that have to be fixed are in the middle. Would you have bought the car if there had been 8 plugs in a row down the middle of the roof so you could stand up straight and change them?
--
Dad
05 C6 Silver/Red 6spd Z51
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Dad wrote:

Not to gripe about the plugs on the 'vette. My bride's land barge has to have a motor mount pulled to change the serpentine belt--plug change is recommended as 'associated maintenance.' -- PJ '89 Hookercar '02 e-blu coupe
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i miss those straight 8's

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Do you miss the vibration or the hood length?
AJM '93 Ruby Coupe, 6 sp (both tops)
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my Dad had until he got the '56 Pontiac (Yes, I know they came out in '55 but he didn't have one.). They sure did require a big roof though but it was no bigger than my Chevy coupe. Now if you really want a big hood how about the 70's Chryslers.
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Guess I just remember being a passenger in an old Buick that had a lot of steering wheel shake at stop signs or at idle. What days those were to be a kid. You often got to ride in the front seat, and there weren't even any seat belts. How'd I survive?
A friend in my college years had a Chrysler Newport. Probably 2 or 3 feet from the front bumper to the engine block. Talk about a land barge...
AJM
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Snip

Bull Durham cigarette while driving with his elbows. He always said that the 55 MPH speed limit was for driveways. He passed away two years after they made the speed limit 55 and I think it brought on his hearth attack along with the cigarettes. ;-0
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