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Discussion Starter #1
So I got the new ignition pickup coil installed and everything's been good for about 300 miles. Then tonight on the way home from work on the freeway I dropped to two cylinders. The third came back on a couple of times before ultimately staying off the rest of the way home. Tach did not drop to 0.

When I did get home I shut her down and there was a loud whooshing noise that sounded like a fan blowing coming from, as best I could tell, the front of the tank by the steering head. It lasted for about a minute and then just died out. While it was going I cracked the tank because I thought maybe it was the tank venting but the noise was not coming from there.

I also noticed the tempurture gauge was reading about half way up and it usually reads just over the bottom line. I had been in stop and go traffic for about 20 minutes so I think she was running hot.

After letting it sit for a couple of hours I fired it back up and it was fine. Took it for a blast and no problems.

Other symptoms:

Running rich - black smoke from exhaust pipes. Not a lot, but more than there should be. And the noticable smell of gas.

Missing (at idle) - not bad but a noticable break in the engine rythme at idle.

I'm thinking that an ignition coil heated up and gave out on me. Could also be a questionable plug.

Note: I am running on Prime so I don't think fuel flow is the issue.

Thoughts? Does this sounds like a coil going? What was that whooshing noise and why have I not heard it before?
 

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The blowing noise was probably from the fan blowing to cool the liquid in the radiator - it will operate independant from the ignition.

It is strange that it should run hot if it runs rich, but hauling along a dead cylinder may have caused the other two to work har enough to raise the temp.

The smell of fuel you notice could also stem from unburned gas if it still fires intermittedly; it doesn't have to be from rich running. However, if a carb is overflowing badly, it can drown a spark plug and cause that cylinder to go dead even if the ignition system is good. This will definitely cause a bad case of fuel smell.

You should check that the oil doesn't reek of fuel and also fit a new spark plug to each cap and ground them and then crak the engine and check that you have a nice blue spark on all 3. If the oil and/or air filter box intake smell of fuel, suspect an owerflowing carb. If one plug in the test is dead or erratic, suspect some sort of ignition problem, most likely a coil.

And now over to the experts :)
 

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I would think that if you ran on 2/3 cylinders for a semi-extended period of time your engine would tend to run hotter. That most likely caused your fan to kick on as faffi said.

If one cylinder is not firing, that doesn't mean that your carburator stopped deliverying fuel/air into the combustion chamber and this could cause the black smoke?

As much as a pain in the butt as it is, I would pull all three plugs (good luck with the center one) and test them for good, solid spark and go from there.

Keep us posted!
 

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I too would say it is a ignition problem. Fuel was being delivered. It just was not being burnt. I, like someone else said, don't understand it running hot if it is rich but, maybe you'll figure that out when you get it sorted out...??? lol

[ This message was edited by: Lone-Rider on 2006-12-12 10:19 ]
 

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Discussion Starter #6
While I'm thinking of it, I read another thread on here where someone said they were able to find aftermarket coils made by Nology. I found them on the Nology website but can not find a dealer. Does anyone have experience with these coils? Know if they fit in the stock location or where I can get some online if it comes to it?
 
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That may have been my post about the Nology coils. (And your description does sound like a coil problem. Could be something else, but a bad or badly connected coil will cause the symptoms you describe.)

If you want the Nology coils, you can order them direct from Nology. Be sure to order the Triumph-specific coils. Last time I checked, the Triumph coils weren't on the site. When I called, I think I spoke to the owner. He said they make coils specifically for the T3 bikes.

HTH & good luck,
-Kit
 

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I doubt that it is a coil [or coils] itself. The reason I say this is that you lost more than one cylinder. I would think it is something that all the cylinders share[primary ignition curcuit].

[ This message was edited by: Lone-Rider on 2006-12-13 09:36 ]
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I ordered my new coils directly from Nology yesterday. I sent an inquiry on their page asking where to get some and I got a prompt email response from Jeff Klein with a number to reach him at. About 5 minutes on the phone and 228.49 later I've got 3 new coils on their way to my door. Best of all they are scheduled to be delivered tommorow! Really top notch operation.

BTW - I'm going to swap the plugs out too and I've read what a PITA they are to get out. I picked up one of those lawnmower plug sockets that is really long and thin walled to try and get that middle one but I was looking through the Haynes manual and it looks like they may be easier to get to if you remove the valve cover plate. Has anyone tried this?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Question specificly for KitNYC but anyone who knows ignition systems can answer:

I got my Nology coils in the mail and finally had a chance to install them today. When I pulled the old coil I noticed that the post on the side that attaches to the plug wire was small and recessed inside the coil. The new Nology coil has a large (normal ignition sized) post to connect the plug wire to. So the plug wire doesn't fit, it's connector is too small.

Included with the coil was a 90 degree rubber boot and another little metal piece that one side snaps onto the Nology post and the other side is flat - almost like some sort of connector that can be crimped on to something but I've never seen anything like this before.

How do I connect the plug wire with the little connector to the Nology coil with the big post? Is there some sort of adapter for this? I tried enlarging the connector inside the plug wire but it really doesn't hold all that well.

I'm going to write Nology also to find out but they sent the Triumph specific coil according to the part number. Any ideas?
 
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I'm pretty sure the Triumph-specific coils have a "T" in the part number, but I've never actually come up with the cash to get a set. I know the main problem with the non-Triumph-specific coils was that the connector was wrong, so it sounds like that's what you got. Sorry I can't be of more help.

Cheers,
-Kit
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yeah the ones I got were the ones with the T in the title and actually say "for Triumph" on the packages. I wonder if the difference is the 90 degree fitting and the metal piece. We'll see what Nology has to say. Thanks!
 
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Please do let us know. I was under the impression that the Nology coils for Triumph were drop-in replacements. These sound splicier than that...

Cheers,
-Kit
 

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Regarding the spark plug change, I'd be suprised if your lawnmower plug socket worked. The change isn't that big of a deal with the factory toolkit, just have a needle nose or a slim magnet handy to extract the center plug. If you don't have the tool kit plug tool, get it along with the allen wrench to turn it.

There are a couple of threads on the Trophy forum regarding PVL, Gill and Nology coils.
 

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The Nology coils I got dropped in place with no mods. (95 Speed Triple) I bought a Craftsman deep socket 18mm that had thin enough walls to fit down in there. I took the rubber retainer out of one of my other plug sockets and cut it in half and shoved it in the Craftsman socket. Works great. The middle plug requires a wobble socket on my Triple.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
So this weekend I finally got everything sorted. Or so it seemed...

I crimped the 90 degree connectors onto the old plug wires and installed them along with the new Nology coils and new spade connectors and new spark plugs (gapped to .9mm).

Idle still a little jumpy - I think I need to synch the carbs - but otherwise everything ran great. Rode 1 hour to work; no problems. Rode 45 minutes home from work and 1 cylinder started cutting out again. ARRRRGH!! I have now replaced everything in the ignition system except the wires and the ignition module itself so I don't know what else it could be. Unless one of the new coils is faulty or one of the new connectors worked itself loose.

I can't think of anything in the fuel system that would heat up and fail that would affect just 1 cylinder.

What should I check next?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
You know, I actually considered that for a minute because it does run fine for an hour before anything goes wrong... the poor sap who bought it would never know... Hey, just like me when I bought it :)

Nah, I want to work it through to completion. It is invaluable experience for any bike I get in the future that needs wrenching.

At this point my next plan is to pull the carbs apart and give them a thorough cleaning. There may be crud in there that works itself loose after riding for some time that clogs a jet or something. Doesn't seem likely but I'm running out of places to look. If it's not spark, it's gotta be fuel!
 

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There is a fairly easy way to determine whether it's ignition related or not: Bring a strobe light and when it starts to miss, let it idle (if possible) while you hook up the strobe. If there ain't no sparking going on, the strobe won't flicker. If it fires intermittedly, then so will the strobe. This way, you can also make sure which cylinder(s) has problems. If the spark is fine for all 3 cylinders, you could expect fuel related problems to be the likely cause, although I suppose it could be temperature related if there is something not quite right in the cooling system. However, I don't hold that as likely.
 
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Good call, Faffi!

Jedrake, I like Faffi's idea. Seems like it might be easier than pulling the carbs...

Cheers,
-Kit
 
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