Author Topic: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution  (Read 1429 times)

Offline kamphaza

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Member since: 2016
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1977
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
'77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« on: April 19, 2016, 11:29 AM »
The other day I was taking out my '77 chieftain with the ole 440 in it. Usually pulling into the 55 mph zone right off of my street I can get up to speed fairly quickly. I begin to pull out and there wasn't as much power as there usually is and all of a sudden the power starts fluctuating very badly. Lots of engine power and then no engine power, lots of engine power, no engine power. This is all within about a mile of driving it. The engine was laboring the entire time. Had the same problem a few weeks ago and began to backfire on me. Eventually it died. We started it the next day and everything was fine...I'm thinking something to do with the fuel pump is not working correctly. Any ideas folks? Thanks Kamphaza

Offline legomybago

  • *
  • Posts: 1074
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1975
  • Make: FMC
  • Model: 2900R
  • Engine: 440
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2016, 03:48 PM »
Sounds like your running out of gas to me. When was the last time any engine work or PM was done?
Never get crap happy with a slap happy pappy

Offline M & J

  • *
  • Posts: 1436
  • Member since: 2012
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1987
  • Make: Tiffin
  • Model: Allegro
  • Chassis: P-30
  • Engine: 454
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2016, 04:52 PM »
Could be as simple as a fuel filter.
M & J

Offline Rickf1985

  • *
  • Posts: 4107
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2016, 05:15 PM »
Ignition coil is going bad

Offline kamphaza

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Member since: 2016
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1977
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2016, 03:07 PM »
All right folks. Ignition coil replaced, and there is no firing of the engine anymore. From what I am reading it seems as if it could be the ballast resistor. We can get the RV started when jumping from another vehicle, but otherwise the engine won't even turn over. Anyone out there had the same issue? anything helps


Zak

Offline legomybago

  • *
  • Posts: 1074
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1975
  • Make: FMC
  • Model: 2900R
  • Engine: 440
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2016, 03:32 PM »
Your describing a "bad" battery or cable issues?? Kinda lost me. Bad ballast resistor or not, your engine will still turn over, it would even start without the resistor. Go here http://dave78chieftain.com/Ignition_Syste.html and read up on ignition trouble shooting.
Never get crap happy with a slap happy pappy

Offline Rickf1985

  • *
  • Posts: 4107
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2016, 04:17 PM »
I think we need to get our engine related terminology straightened out here. Engine turning over means the starter is turning the engine, not necessarily starting but it is turning the engine. Same as engine cranking.

Engine turning over but not starting is just as it sounds, it will crank but not start.
You could have a bad ballast resistor but 98% of the time when they go bad they are done, no start and no run. On cranking the ballast resistor is bypassed so if engine is turning over but not starting then it is not the resistor. If it starts but shuts off as soon as you let off the starter then that is a bad ballast resistor.

If the engine will not crank at all without a jump and you are hooking the jumper cables up by attaching the ground cable to a metal part of the engine then you have a loose, dirty or bad ground cable. It it cranks with jumpers hooked terminal to terminal then check both terminals and the other ends of the cables as well.

You may have a bad ignition module but before suggesting you spend any more money I want to be sure of the symptoms.

Offline kamphaza

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Member since: 2016
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1977
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #7 on: April 22, 2016, 01:49 PM »
Thanks Rick. It seems as if the starter is turning the engine and then I get nothing from the engine. After turning the ignition a few times the starter turning goes away and there is no sound at all. I will check the battery connections, and let you know.


Zak

Offline Rickf1985

  • *
  • Posts: 4107
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #8 on: April 22, 2016, 04:24 PM »
Sounds to me like you have a bad battery and all of the available power is going to the starter and the voltage to the distributor is so low it will not run the electronic ignition module. It should crank the engine a lot more than just a few times.

Offline kamphaza

  • *
  • Posts: 4
  • Member since: 2016
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1977
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2017, 10:36 AM »
Older post, however I wanted to update for everyone. All problems fixed with a CHOKE being installed. She starts up every time and can get up to 70mph!!!  :)

Offline legomybago

  • *
  • Posts: 1074
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1975
  • Make: FMC
  • Model: 2900R
  • Engine: 440
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2017, 10:57 AM »
Mopars are cold blooded. Thanks for updating, a year later!! hahahaha
Never get crap happy with a slap happy pappy

Offline LJ-TJ

  • 13 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 2314
  • Member since: 2003
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1975
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: D21
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: '77 Chieftain odd power distribution
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2017, 01:23 PM »
Yep! Thanks for the up date.

 

* Dave's Place

All the critical info you need for:
Dodge brake systems
Converters
Charging systems
Belts & Hoses

And more!

FULL Membership!

Want to start enjoying all the benefits  Full Membership has to offer?

Become a Full

Want to enjoy your

Full Membership

without ever having

to renew?

Become a:

 

* Salvage Yards

Find
RV Salvage Yards



By STATE

Dodge VIN Decoder

Want to know what your Dodge VIN means?

Dodge VIN Decoder

* Model Brochures

View Brochures for all
Winnebago, Itasca,
LeSharo & Phasar
from:
1969-present


Layouts, features,
options & more

* Resources

Need parts and information?
View the Resource List
.