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Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

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  • Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

    Hi. I have a 77 wellcraft nova 210, it was running fine, then the starter went out. I put a brand new marine starter on it, now it wont fire. it turns over, just wont crank. its getting fuel, and spark???? I took it to a marine mechanic and he said the starter was weak because it was turning over slow, so he put another brand new starter, still not firing.. so then he said that something in the engine or outdrive was tight, and not allowing engine to turn fast enough to start. Now, I told the guy after having my boat for two months that he could kiss my *** and to give me my boat. ended up paying him$40. So... whats the problem here? boat running fine, put new starter, now guy tells me the engine is bad?? I did notice that the distributer cap is loose, u can shake it around. and the connecter on the inside of distributer cap at the top center appears to be broken off. with all that being said, where do I start?? Thanks.


  • #2
    Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

    Do your question marks after spark mean that you aren't sure if there's spark? If the distributor isn't connecting correctly, then you're not going to be able to run because the spark won't be there, or won't be consistent, or in sequence as it needs to be to make everything run.

    I'm a noob here, but I'm anxiously checking my post every two seconds, so figured I'd try to throw out an idea for help. I don't consider myself anything close to an expert at all, so I would confirm or refute my thought here before trying it.

    Good luck!

    Joe

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    • #3
      Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

      Thanks Joe, yes it is definitely getting spark, but I think the loose distributor cap definitely has something to do with it not starting. do u have to use a marine distributor cap??

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      • #4
        Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

        Not a clue, but I would have to guess that you do.

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        • #5
          Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

          You need to get the distributor cap installed correctly. Yes it will be a marine cap. Best thing would be to replace the cap and rotor with new parts.

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          • #6
            Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

            Is the engine still turning over slow? If so, that could be because of poor battery connections, weak battery, defective cables, tight engine from rust in cylinders, etc. etc.

            What engine are we talking about 77 Wellcraft Nova tells us nothing about the engine and drive.
            Don S.

            sigpic

            Please, no PM's (Private Messages) regarding boat/engine problems.
            That is what the forums are for.
            Only forum/moderator issues will be answered in PM's.

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            • #7
              Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

              Originally posted by Don S View Post
              Is the engine still turning over slow? If so, that could be because of poor battery connections, weak battery, defective cables, tight engine from rust in cylinders, etc. etc.

              What engine are we talking about 77 Wellcraft Nova tells us nothing about the engine and drive.
              its a mercruiser, ford 351

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              • #8
                Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                has a brand new battery, fully charged, also when i put the new battery on, i had the neg side hooked to the spall terminal and when trying to start the boat, it got hot and broke off.

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                • #9
                  Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                  Originally posted by jus10reese View Post
                  has a brand new battery, fully charged, also when i put the new battery on, i had the neg side hooked to the spall terminal and when trying to start the boat, it got hot and broke off.
                  Ayuh,... Hooked to What,..??
                  Any Grease is Better,..... Than No Grease at All.......

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                  • #10
                    Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                    Did you fat finger that and mean "small" terminal? Either way it got too hot. You're drawing too much juice (amps). Check the starter, the motor, the wiring and any solenoids involved.
                    When the terminal cooked did you have the new cap on? Were the wires to the correct plugs?
                    You said the old starter quit. When the motor last ran was it acting badly?
                    With the slow cranking your timing could be off or the timing gear could have jumped. Or you might have some water in the cylinders.
                    To check for water remove the spark plugs and crank the starter, it should spin fast and easy, but if water comes out the plug holes start checking for why. (And get some oil in those holes if there's water in there.)
                    If it just spins and there's no water, check the distributor. Maybe the mechanic you went to moved it. Or maybe it's jumped off it's correct gear tooth. If it has, you probably ought to research the implications in that motor. Lots of guys on here know them, someone will be able to guide you.
                    I hope it's something cheap and easy like a solenoid, but who can say?
                    1989 Baja Sunsport 196, Mercruiser 5.7, Alpha 1
                    Moultonborough Neck, Lake Winnipesaukee, NH

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                    • #11
                      Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                      Your distributor needs to be addressed. If the cap is loose, the rotor will not spin true and probably caused the piece to break off which will give you NO spark. It also could be messing with your timing and cause the slow cranking issue.

                      By the way, where did you find that marine mechanic
                      Todd 22' STARCRAFT SS V5 200hp

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                      • #12
                        Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                        Thanks, lots of good info to start trouble shooting. the distributer cap is loose and the ditributer is also turning freely which I assume its not supposed to. I really think if I get this stuff right and get the timing right it will be good. As for the mechanic, he is highly regarded around this area, which is a big boating area, largest best lake in Alabama in this town. Anyway, I was absolutelyamazed that he was that unknowlegable. I have at least 20 friends with boats that use him, needless to say, I didnt give him a very good report to them.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                          First you need to pull your plugs and check for water in the cylinders and free spin of the starter. If that's OK, then you need to set your distributor in place properly and you need to install a new rotor and a new cap. Set you timing and see if it will start. If you aren't sure how to do this, get yourself a manual for your engine and follow the diagrams and directions in it. It isn't really complicated. Since you hope the engine will actually start, connect the muffs and a hose before you finally crank it over. Hopefully this will get you going. Hy. PS, From what you've said, I don't know how anyone could call that mechanic "highly regarded."

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                          • #14
                            Re: Help! 1977 Wellcraft Nova no fire!

                            If the distributor will spin when installed you need to pull the distributor and inspect the gear on it. If the gear is good you need to make sure it is seated properly and see if it will still spin.

                            If you broke the teeth off of the cam you have a big problem.
                            '77 Sea Ray 260 Sundancer
                            Twin Merc-165 I6

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