Engine Help! 1980 Ford Mustang won't start, has spark

5ziggy5

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Feb 4, 2022
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I have acquired a 1980 Ford Mustang 2.3l with no turbo. I have changed the following: plugs, plug wires, distributer cap&rotor, ignition control module, coil, and ignition cylinder. All of that got me to where I do have spark, and I am giving it fuel myself (I haven't cleaned the gas tank yet so the line is unhooked). I have checked the timing, it is at 0, which I assume should allow it to at least fire, and the timing belt seems to be fine and turning everything. Yet, it still will not start. It won't even hit. (I haven't tested compression with a gauge, but I can feel a compression stroke hand turning the engine)
 
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HyYoSilver

Founding Member
.........I have checked the timing, it is at 0, which I assume should allow it to at least fire, and the timing belt seems to be fine and turning everything..........
Align the crank to TDC on the compression stroke, then remove the dist cap to see if the rotor is pointing to number 1 cylinder in the cap.
(I'm thinking the dist might have been installed 180* out of phase.)
 
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junkyardwarrior

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Jan 10, 2011
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Align the crank to TDC on the compression stroke, then remove the dist cap to see if the rotor is pointing to number 1 cylinder in the cap.
(I'm thinking the dist might have been installed 180* out of phase.)
or the timing belt slipped. The belt runs the cam and the aux shaft, and the aux shaft runs the distributor/oil pump.
 
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ChillPhatCat

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Apr 22, 2002
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How are you giving it fuel? Just curious if you have the right fuel pressure from your source. (Or are you doing it old school pouring gas into the carb?) With spark confirmed the first thing I’d do is give it about a 3 second blast of starter fluid. Right down the throat… open the cab blades and spray it right in.
 

Lee Clark

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Feb 20, 2022
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I have acquired a 1980 Ford Mustang 2.3l with no turbo. I have changed the following: plugs, plug wires, distributer cap&rotor, ignition control module, coil, and ignition cylinder. All of that got me to where I do have spark, and I am giving it fuel myself (I haven't cleaned the gas tank yet so the line is unhooked). I have checked the timing, it is at 0, which I assume should allow it to at least fire, and the timing belt seems to be fine and turning everything. Yet, it still will not start. It won't even hit. (I haven't tested compression with a gauge, but I can feel a compression stroke hand turning the engine)
Remove harmonic balancer and belts and remove timing belt cover see if camshaft and valve shaft marks are in right position when you check timing. Like the guys stated it might be 180 out.