[Healeys] Engine dies suddenly--solved???

Michael Oritt michael.oritt at gmail.com
Sun Mar 24 14:03:46 MDT 2019

I am back in Maryland from having driven down to Richmond after replacing
the damaged and suspect ballast resistor.  We drove about 275 miles total
at speeds up to around 70 mph as well as around town.  Car ran fine--no
miss, no cough, no sudden stopping.  Of course, it is impossible to prove a
negative--that is, that the damaged ballast resistor was in fact the issue
but it does add up.  In any case this trip's success restores much of my
confidence in the car.

Thanks to all for your input, patience and support.

Best--Michael Oritt

On Sun, Mar 24, 2019 at 3:35 PM WILLIAM B LAWRENCE <ynotink at msn.com> wrote:

> Thumbs up! We will be expecting a report...
> ------------------------------
> *From:* Michael Oritt <michael.oritt at gmail.com>
> *Sent:* Saturday, March 23, 2019 1:42 AM
> *Cc:* Austin Healey
> *Subject:* Re: [Healeys] Engine dies suddenly--solved???
> Bill--
> As they say "every ride is a test ride".  In any case I have Hagerty
> Plus....
> Best--Michael Oritt
> On Fri, Mar 22, 2019 at 8:58 PM WILLIAM B LAWRENCE <ynotink at msn.com>
> wrote:
> a 250 mile test drive. You are a brave man. Healey on!
> Bill Lawrence
> BN1 #554
> ------------------------------
> *From:* Healeys <healeys-bounces at autox.team.net> on behalf of Michael
> Oritt <michael.oritt at gmail.com>
> *Sent:* Friday, March 22, 2019 11:24 PM
> *To:* Austin Healey
> *Subject:* [Healeys] Engine dies suddenly--solved???
> Rather than replacing parts on a wholesale basis without learning what was
> the cause of the car's suddenly stopping my hope/goal was to find a
> component/connection in the ignition system that appeared to be defective.
> This morning I started at the key switch and it tested fine. I then moved
> to the ballast resistor whose task is to reduce voltage to the MSD Blaster
> 2 coil and the Unilite ignition module. I wanted to check the ballast's
> value with an ohm meter and because of where it was installed--just above
> the starter on the inner face of the passenger toe box--I could not get the
> probes to the contacts, so I removed it to check it on the bench. When I
> unscrewed the bolt that held it in place a piece of its innards fell onto
> the floor of the garage!
> The Mallory 700 resistor, which along with the Unilite, has been in the
> car for 10-12 trouble-free years. It is supposed to have a value of 1.5
> ohms. On examining its remains on the bench I could see that the coiled
> wire appeared loose at one end and when I checked its value I got readings
> that were all over the scale. Luckily I had a spare ballast on hand--this
> one actually made by MSD and matched to the blaster coil--so I installed it
> in place of the old unit. I'm "cautiously optimistic" that I found the
> issue but of course that will have to be borne out by experience.
> My wife likes to ride in the Healey and we like Richmond VA, which is
> about 125 miles from home. The route down US 301 will keep us off of
> interstates, so we're heading down there in the morning for an overnight
> trip. I'll be bringing along a multimeter along with a spare coil, rotor
> and Unilite ignition module, wire and connectors, etc. Hopefully all will
> go well. Fingers crossed....
> Best--Michael Oritt
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