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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, I replaced the water pump in my '88 and now have no ignition spark. I held spark plug boot to ground--no spark.

The starter turns the motor over fine, I have power to all accessories and fuel pump (can hear it run and smell fuel when turning over). I swear I didn't touch any ignition parts, and the car ran just fine before replacing the pump two days ago. I did have to remove the alternator for clearance to the pump inlet. The alternator is 2 months old, and was charging just fine before. Timing belt is fine.

Before I just start replacing ignition parts, I'd like to know what others think. Could I have fried something in the circuit to or from the alternator? If so, what would cut power to just the ignition circuit?
 

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You can check your alternator pretty easily.

I don't know the first gen EGT at all, but is it possible you did something to your crankshaft position sensor when you did the water pump? That's the only thing near my waterpump (91 LX) that I can think of that might do this to you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Crankshaft position sensor, hmm. It did occur to me that I didn't plug something in.

I looked all over to make sure that there weren't any plugs hanging around, but certainly could have missed one. Where is the crankshaft position sensor anyway?

I will take the alternator down and have it checked tonight as well.

Thanks.
 

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Just to clarify - I know the 2nd gen GTs don't have a crankshaft position sensor to speak of (distributor ignition instead). I am just not sure if the 1st gen was similar or not.

If you do have a crankshaft position sensor, it will be located very near your water pump, very clsoe to and directed at the crank sprocket - it detects the missing tooth by reluctance.

If the cam and crank were simply off by a tooth or so, you'd still get spark - just your car would run like crap - in effect your timing is simply off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
As it turned out the cam alignment was off. I could have sworn it looked fine when I buttoned things up. Maybe I left it too slack on the right side. I repositioned it and it started right up--confirming I am an idiot. I guess it was out enough for the camsensor to cut spark?

FYI, the '88 doesn't have a crank sensor. Only later models had distributorless ignitions.

Thanks for everyones help.
 

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I'm glad your Escort is working.

In the end, I think you must have had spark all along. Because (in the end) you have a distributor, you will have no crankshaft position sensor and no camshaft position sensor either (I'm not aware that Escorts of any generation have a camshaft position sensor).

If all that was wrong was that your timing belt was simply installed incorrectly such that the cam and crank weren't timed properly, you would still have had spark. With the belt installed incorrectly, your car will either run poorly or not at all (depending how badly timed you are), but it will not cut out your spark. Sometimes it's hard to see the spark especially if it's bright out.

But just to be agreeable...ok, you were an idiot. Just kidding!
 
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