The last straw

I've followed every "guru's" tips and tricks I could find anywhere in an effort to rid my 89 XJ (Cherokee, 4.0, auto) of the cutting out it
has been doing and today I even drained the savings account to get a refurbished ECM (the computer under the dash).
I ran all the extra ground connections, soldered all the crimped connector splices, tested or replaced all the sensors (including the TPS and reset it to 16% of input voltage), cleaned all the wiring connector plugs, cleaned the throttle body and injectors, replaced the fuel pump, filter, pressure regulator, vacuum lines IAC, camshaft and lifters and converted it to an open cooling system.
And it's still cutting out as bad as ever. I don't dare take it out of town.
One site's expert (http://www.lunghd.com ), after I emailed to try and get help, asked a few questions to clarify terminology, then never replied back.
So now I have over $1500 in the non-driveable piece of junk and I probably won't be able to sell it for that much.
But I'm listing it Monday anyway.
Maybe someone will trade me a burnt up Pinto even-steven ... I'd come out ahead.
Budd
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says...

Have you considered obtaining the services of a trained mechanic?
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Funny you should ask ... I are one (small engines to heavy equipment, including diesels), but I've not been able to keep up with these computerized injection systems due to working other jobs and because I didn't go to one of the diploma mills like WyoTech (my middle son went toWyo @ Laramie and was constantly calling home to learn how to do things his "instructor" couldn't do)... and I am 68 years old, you see.
Oh, and being on fixed income I can't afford the $100+ /hour diagnostic fees IF they have the right scanner (currently $1500+ US to buy if they can find one) for an OBD1 (no retained codes) system.
The symptoms, if it a carbureted engine, are like gasoline contaminated with water but the first thing I did was put in two cans of HEET (alcohol) at a fill up from a trusted station (where I've got my gas for years) so water isn't likely and a settling test (a small amount pumped into a glass container by the fuel pump and set aside for an hour) shows no water or foriegn material.
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Budd

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says...

Have you managed to find out what isn't working, specifically?
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On 7/18/2015 4:57 PM, J. Clarke wrote:

Well, obviously not if I'm wanting to sell it and if you had read my posts more carefully you wouldn't have asked because it would also have been obvious that I would have fixed/replaced the defective item.
It's a bit hard to be in two places at once, ya know.
For example: I can't be watching the tach for an RPM drop while also reading a voltmeter connected to the ignition module (my wife is not mechanically inclined along with being on O2 24/7 and I do not have any available help in my neighborhood).
Or reading a fuel pressure tester (as if I have one!) when checking RPM drops on the tach.
Get the idea????
Now. I would appreciate it if everyone would engage brain before asking more questions of this type.
You want more info? Read previous postings about the 89 XtremeJunker by me ... it's all there.
As for what is not working "specifically", how about "the whole dangblasted Renix system"?
Budd
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says...

So how _ever_ did you get by before you had a computer to tell you scan codes?

Yeah, the idea I get is that you seem awful short of tools for someone claiming to be a trained mechanic. Harbor Freight will sell you a multimeter with tach for 35 bucks and a fuel pressure tester for 20 bucks. I find it strange that an experienced mechanic would shotgun the problem to the tune of 1500 bucks without spending a hundred or so on the tools to do a proper diagnosis.

Where? Google can't find it either in the main search or in Groups.

So which is it, is it an OBD1 system or is it a Renix system? And when you say "the whole blasted system" do you mean that there is no signal on _any_ of the engine control wiring?
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What computer to scan codes??? t's a OBD1 system and DOES NOT retain codes.
If you truly knew the old Renix F.I. system you would know that as well as I do and as mentioned the correct test ing equipment is very rare and expensive today.

And I find it strange that you cannot seem to grasp the concept that I just might not, on my limited and fixed income, be able to afford to keep the $7000 dollars (1960's value ... about $75000 in today's dollars) worth of tools I had at one time (had to hock most in the divorce in '73) nor run down to the nearest Harbor Freight (well known for low quality tools, btw) 40 miles away in my XJ that isn't dependable enough to trust outside of the city limits and neither H.F. nor Wally World carries the Renix system test equipment for $19.95 (special today only!!!).

What newsreader are you using?? I use either Outlook Express on the XP PC (this one) or Mozilla Thunderbird on my Win7 PC and all I have to do is download more than, let's say, 300 articles to get the old threads.
But I belive the pertinent articles are no more than 3-4 months back.

Renix used the "no retained codes" OBD1 type programming.
And I mean the whole darn system sucks from the first computerized engine management systms to todays crap.
But, based on the responses you've given me, I'd say you are probably an advocated for modern engine control systems and consider anything prior to be not worth consideration even though it was far more "user friendly" and dependable.
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says...

If you want a device to tell you codes, whether "retained" or otherwise then you are relying on a computer to troubleshoot for you rather than doing it yourself.

Why are you so hung up on "correct test equipment"? Figure out what's preventing your engine from running, then figure out from that what the engine control system is doing that is making that happen.

A "low quality" tachometer should still be as accurate as the one in the instrument panel on which you seem to be relying for diagnostic purposes. And you don't have to "run" anywhere. They'll deliver it right to your door. Or you can get one off of Amazon.
And you're still stuck on those damned codes. FORGET THE DAMNED CODES. Figure out what's happening in the engine that prevent is from running. You act like some young kid who's helpless without a computer.
And you hocked your tools in '73? That was more than 40 years ago. What, you couldn't get another decent job in all that time?

What difference does the newsreader make? It's the server that carries the threads and mine doesn't have one called "89 ExtremeJunker or anything of a like or similar nature, nor does Google's.

Fine, it sucks. Unless by "sucks" you mean that it has vacuum where pressure needs to be, saying "it sucks" is not going to get your engine running.

I'm an advocate for 68 year old retired professional mechanics actually doing some mechanicking instead of complaining.
I shouldn't need to ask questions like this of someone who claims your experience, but when it stops running, does it have spark, yes or no? Does it have fuel, yes or no? Are the injectors injecting, yes or no?
You complain about a "fixed income" but you have plenty of money to blow on parts to try to shotgun the problem, more than you would spend on a few tools to actually diagnose it.
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On 7/19/2015 1:55 PM, J. Clarke wrote:

And if the system requires a scanning device that doesn't matter to you apparently. I should be able to determine what is going on in a programmed system with just looking at a dvom.
What did you say you do for a living?

And for the Renix MFI that REQUIRES the correct scanner.

Again, you have no concept of living on a fixed income and that shipping costs are often higher than purchase prices or the cost of the trip to drive somewhere.
You have to have a "low quality" tach to hook one up, don't you think???

And you are acting like a total ass.

Again, you're being an ass. After the EPA took over the auto industry, shops wouldn't hire mechanics without certification and I was too busy trying to care for a family to be gone to a tech school not that there were many in the 70's.

Try searching for my email address instead with the newsreader.
The "Extremejunker" was a joke and you took it literally ... 89 XJ, 89 Cherokee should be good keywords just look for posts from the email address at the top of this post, which is a real email address.

And you're no help either.

Really??? If you were a physician I'd tell you your bedside manner is atrocious.
BTW, I never claimed to a "professional" just trained and experienced.
OTOH, YOU asked about a "qualified" mechanic, not a professional.
What did you mean by "qualified"? A diploma mill "graduate"?
I ain't one.

And you really think I haven't checked that? Spark:yes, fuel:yes, injection:yes but that is while I'm cranking it, not while it's cutting out because I cannot check those while running easily.
Oh, and fuel pressure: on a carbureted engine we looked for a certain volume in so many seconds into a glass container but with the Renix, depressing the Shrader valve on the fuel rail 30 minutes after shutting the engine down causes a fine spray 2 feet long past the driver's side fender (to prevent fires from the hot exhaust hear right under it).
According to other Renix owners that would appear to be 30 psi or more.
Operating pressure is 31-39 psi.

You don't retain what you've read, do you? The scanner, as I repeat myself again, for Renix MFI systems, when I last checked 4 years ago, was not available readily and that the cost was around $1500 US and only reads codes while the engine is running.
The money I've spent is the total since January of this year, and not a one lump sum.
Budd
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says...

Look, go be miserable if you want to. You're the one who said you couldn't use a multimeter and a tach at the same time. When I tell you where to get a tach for a reasonable price you start whining about "Renix scanner".
If it had a carburetor what would you be whining about?
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YOU say that I'm miserable ... Gee ... I don't.
Rather, I'm ticked off at an organization, the EPA, that liberals have given law-making authority to that is not a part of the legislative body of the US government, Congress, and doesn't even have a true automotive engineer on staff yet has decided they know all there is to know about how an internal combustion process works.
But you've probably swallowed their propaganda hook, line and sinker and washed it down with a liberal amount of their kool-aid.
As for handling two items ... ok, smart guy, tell me how you would operate a DVOM while holding an el cheapo tach and controlling the throttle whilst keeping all the test leads away from rapidly (2000+ rpms) rotating assemblies and you are not allowed to ask for help.
And you conveniently forget that I am broke when it comes to your "suggested purchases".
Maybe you should buy them for me if you think it's that darn important.
You know nothing of carbureted fuel systems or you wouldn't have made that comment.
The same symptoms on a carbureted engine could be caused by: Faulty ignition system (did tune-up and replaced ignition coil and ICM) ; contaminated or lack of fuel (checked for foriegn materials like rust or water. replaced pump and filter, cleaned injectors manually); dirty carburetor passages or low float settings (cleaned throttle body, replaced IAC, and got sprayed by fuel from the schrader valve because I wasn't expecting any pressure after the engine had been turned off for 30 minutes and my arm is a bit over 24" long).
Carbed engines don't have ECM's so that doesn't enter into that diagnosis but since the unit I pulled out had a physically damaged electrolytic capacitor (swollen case) I decided to replace it to see if it was the problem.
As for the Renix scanning tool, there are things in this Universe you cannot check or do without the proper tool ... like playing pool with a quart jar of nitroglycerine.
Miserable??? If I were miserable I wouldn't remain sarcastic with you ... I'd just ignore you.
And with my Irish/Scottish/Cherokee ancestry, the time to worry is when I get quiet. . . . . . . .
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says...

Oh, booh hooh.

By setting both in a secure place where I could see them and routing the leads away from the front of the engine. Geez, I thought you were an _experienced_ mechanic. If this is _difficult_ for you I begin to understand why you couldn't get a mechanicking job.

Maybe if you hadn't spent all that money on parts you didn't need that didn't fix the problem and had either paid it to a real mechanic or gotten the right tools for the job up front then you wouldn't be broke.

You didn't answer the question. If it had a carburetor then how would you diagnose it?

In other words you shotgunned it instead of finding out what was broken first.

In other words you shotgunned it instead of figuring out what was broken first.

In other words you shotgunned it instead of finding out what was broken first,.

I would have replaced the capacitor, not the unit, but that would have required you to spend 25 bucks for a soldering iron instead of whatever you paid for a new ECU, but that's me. Still, other than that you had no indication that the ECU was the problem, so again you shotgunned it instead of finding out what was broken and fixing it.

So what specific thing do you want to check for?

Threats from an old man who admits he doesn't have the means to drive across town. I'm sooooooo scared.
However it's clear that your problem is not your Jeep, so gday.
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On 7/20/2015 3:53 AM, J. Clarke wrote:

Actually, the problem is asses like you that have no concept of reality outside your own little world.
And I don't threaten.
Budd
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On 7/20/2015 9:29 AM, Budd Cochran wrote:

I now see my real mistake was in thinking that J. Clarke had really had some experience with a Renix injection system and truly could offer advice for repairing it.
I won't do that again.
Budd
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Folks, The petty fighting isn't helping.
Budd, it comes down to this, stick to what you know or pay to have some fix your jeep for you. Swapping out to an all carbed, points ignition will mean switching/adoption costs and legacy technology will cost more time and money to maintain. Ol der parts will cost more, simply because of rarity.
Or spend the money and have someone with better tools and skills do your wo rk for you. Where you get to kick back and have someone else be responsible & find a solution. When I was IT, I had 2 labor rates. 1 with and without instructions. I can fix your IT problems, quickly. But, if you make me explain to you what I'm doing and why, that drives up YOUR TIME. I get that living on fixed incomes sucks and discretionary spending applies but..it's about values. Which is more valued, driving an older jeep, or... Something has to give. There's a reason why technical education is expensive, (plumbers, electrici ans, auto mechanics) because the technology behind it continues to evolve. If you can't keep up, do something else. If you're conservative, and believe that it's the govt fault, you can blame it all on greed. Why should I fix your problem for free, when I can charge you for it? It's also called free market enterprise, it's the basis for ev ery GOP puke, says is great for America..
In the end, You can complain all you want about the government, but they ar en't going to fix your jeep.
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On 7/24/2015 5:23 AM, batty505 wrote:

Read my OT post and you'll see I got an 85 Dodge truck which I can work on.
But not all parts have to be bought ... my step-d taught me to make gaskets for carbs, for example, with a small ball-peen hammer and a cereal box.

Two labor rates is not good public relations, in my opinion, but then I've only started four businesses (I can start them but I don't like to run them) since age 14.

Oh this is really helpful ... In case you hadn't noticed, I DID admit my skills were lacking and that, for reasons other than laziness, I hadn't kept them up.

Why, yes, I am a conservative and I believe in free enterprise over entitlements, big government and straying from the Constitution as written.
FYI, like I said, I started my first business at age 14 (1961) and I was mowing lawns in a grassless prairie town in Colorado making miore money than the president of the local bank.

Einstein said that the definition of insanity was doing the same thing over and expecting different results.
I don't blame the government for my Jeep troubles, I blame unqualified government employees/appointees that have been allowed to circumvent the Constitution to enact laws forcing their opinions and interpretations of specious facts upon the automotive industry.
I worked for a major OEM exhaust system supplier (Arvin Ind. Inc.) when the laws were passed forcing Ford to lose 50% of the fuel economy, GM and Chrysler lost 30-40% plus all lost performance. Dieseling, stalling and worsened emissions were the results.
Then we worked with engineers from GM, Ford, Chrysler to set up to run catalytic converters (AMC used cats from GM or Chrysler) While the Big Three's engineers spoke among themselves of how the substrates have to reach 900+ degrees (unobtainable around town) from exhaust flow to "light off" at all.
Then we got stuck with computers like the infamous Chrysler "lean burn" which was an absolute failure but led to what we have today: cars that could be knocked out of service by a lightning strike a few feet away (EMP) or a small nuclear device a few hundred miles away.
So, all in all, your post was no more helpful than some others.
Budd
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n

PS

r

,

Who in their right mind would buy a non-driveable piece of junk, as you call it, for $1500, especially since it is twenty-six years-old? My 2010 Jeep Patriot has shitty ball joints (fixed though), like all Chrysler products and I'm willing to get rid of it.
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Aw ... now that's real helpful. Gee, thanks ...
And, fyi, my XJ does run ... just not well and there are people in my area with more money than sense that will buy junk Jeeps, F4's, etc. to build rock crawlers to take to Moab UT to destroy them or themselves.
If I could swap a carbed 258 with Torq-Command (AMC version of the famously durable Mopar Torq-Flite) I'd keep the beastie and get better fuel economy and off-road performance to boot.
As for yours ... did you ever lubed the joints?
Back when they (the EPA) first thought the average shadetree wrench twister didn't know nuttin', they put plugs in the joints instead of zerks but we removed them and put the zerks in and the joints could go 100,000 miles.
Hey, ya wanna swap even? but only if yours, like mine, is paid for.
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ld

we

s.

The joints can't be lubed apparently. I don't work on cars myself but these joints are such garbage that people tend to replace them at about 30,000 miles which is clearly a lot sooner than most cars. I fixed two of them at the dealer (and they put in the same kind of part as the original) but replaced a third with a superior part from what seems to be Moog (now sold as the Nascar brand apparently, at least here in Canada). That part has a lifetime warranty whereas what Jeep puts in doesn't have a warranty any longer than a year. You can be sure that when these ball joints break again, I won't be going to Jeep to get them fixed. Also, the superior parts _CAN_ be lubed unlike Jeep's.
But yeah, the car's paid-for... but even if I wanted to swap for a much older Jeep, I doubt you're anywhere near Montreal.
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wrote:

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