2000 Contour V6 - recurring miss

I posted the following three messages on rec.auto.tech over the last three weeks, and had a few suggestions, but nothing I have done has solved the problem. So I thought maybe someone over here at alt.autos.ford might be
able to help.
Thanks, Craig
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(This is my third posting - start with the last one below and read up if you want the history.)
Swapping ignition coils between the two cars didn't solve the problem. Nor did replacing the fuel filter. The air filter was replaced not too long ago and is very clean. I also added some Heet (water remover) and Techron fuel system cleaner to the gas tank. Our daughter drove the car on a 60-mile trip with no problems, but on the way home, coming up a rather steep climb, the car started missing again. So it still misses intermittently.
A friend suggested that it could be a bad fuel injector and told me to listen to them to see if one sounds different from the others. The problem is that I can't get to them without removing lots of stuff (upper air intake included). Of course, maybe I'm missing something - I'm not a _real_ mechanic, just a tinkerer.
So, any last suggestions before I take it to the local Ford dealer?
Craig
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A couple of weeks ago, I posted the below, and got a couple of suggestions. I put the original spark plug back in cylinder 1, checked under the hood in the dark, disconnected the battery cable so the computer would re-learn the car, etc. but the miss is still there. It is intermittent, though, and in my opinion is spark related rather than fuel related. The car winds out to 6000+ rpm and seems to run better at higher rpms.
Tonight I pulled the ignition coil modules from _both_ our 2000 Contours, and found black soot in the connection for cylinder #1 in both cars. In fact it was much worse in the SVT (the one not having the problem). Since these coils are identical, I am thinking of just swapping them and seeing what happens. I'll be sure to put a good coating of dielectric grease on all the connectors.
Any comments or suggestions? Where does the soot come from?
Craig
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(Mid-December 2004)
A little puzzled by this one. A miss problem that I thought I had fixed came back.
Last summer our 2000 Contour Sport V6 (2.5L, 5-speed, 60K miles) developed a miss with an intermittent Check Engine Light. I took it to the local AutoZone and had the codes read, and it was a misfire in cylinder 1.
Changing the spark plug did not solve the problem. The plug I removed was clean, too. Since we have _two_ 2000 Contours (the other is an SVT), I removed the #1 plug wire from the SVT, put it on the Sport, and no more miss. So I bought a set of wires for the Sport, and the car ran better than ever.
Then, this past week, my wife reported that the car "shuddered" some at idle, and rpms dropped below normal. A couple of days later, she said the CEL came on a few times and the car seemed to be missing again. So I drove it to work. Sure enough, the miss is back, worse than before. Driving it home from work, the CEL was flashing, which I understand to mean that excess gasoline is in the exhaust, which could damage the catalytic converter.
Took it back to AZ -- misfire in cyclinder 1. It hasn't been driven since.
So what do you think? My first thought is to swap the coil pack from the SVT to this car, and see if that is the problem. I doubt that the new wire or plug would be the cause - too much of a coincidence. It could also be a fuel injector problem.
Any suggestions from your experience would be appreciated. I'd rather not take it to the local dealership - their service garage reputation is not so good, and I'm willing to spend a little time.
Craig [to reply directly, change the VERB to a NUMERAL]
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