Timeormoney New Reader
March 4, 2010 8:28 a.m.

So I cooked the 325is motor in my 87 e30, swapped in a spare and now I don't have a working tach, plus the motor is acting like it can't advance the spark. A few more mystery details: 1. I swapped the instrument cluster at the same time, so not sure if my tach is dead in the cluster 2. In a fit of stupidity and rage, I pulled the old head off the blown motor (with intake and exhaust manifold attaches) and chucked it to the recycler, with the BRAND NEW spark plug wires on it. So the current motor is running some very old wires, and the tach signal wire is a totally different color, so it COULD be a replacement or who knows. 3. New spark plug wires are $$$$, so I wanna make sure they are the issue before I buy a new set.

Soooo, how do I check this out? This would appear to be the rarest damn e30 problem ever since all my usual web sources have nothing listed, and even google failed me.

stuart in mn SuperDork
March 4, 2010 8:39 a.m.

Since you swapped in a different cluster I would imagine that either the tach in the new cluster is bad, or you missed a connector on the back side. Also, if the batteries in the service indicator board on the back of the cluster are bad the speedo/tach may or may not work correctly.

Timeormoney New Reader
March 4, 2010 8:41 a.m.

In reply to stuart in mn:

Checked Connectors, three times, all look good. I think it is probably the battery. If I don't have a working tach in the cluster, will that keep the ecu from controlling the spark?

March 4, 2010 8:46 a.m.

Since you have no advance I will also assume the ECU is not getting a good signal - since it runs we know its not the crank position so... check your lead from the spark plug wire back to the harness.

carzan Reader
March 4, 2010 9:55 a.m.

Are you using the same distributor? Also, you might as well go ahead and get some new wires. If they aren't causing this particular issue, they''ll cause another.

Timeormoney New Reader
March 4, 2010 12:15 p.m.

will check the connector for the signal next.

You'll need to log in to post.

Also on Grassroots Motorsports

Concours d’Lemons: Showcasing the Best of the Worst and the Worst of the Best

6 hours ago in Articles

This year’s Concours d’Lemons celebrated two cars rarely associated with the glitz and glamor of Monterey.

Your Projects: Wide-Body, V8-Powered Porsche 944

6 hours ago in News

Wing, flares, V8 swap and more!

Acura Unveils New Prototype Race Car in Monterey

14 hours ago in News

Acura yesterday unveiled the new Acura ARX-05 prototype race car.

We're Back In Monterey for Car Week

1 day ago in News

And so it begins, another trip to Monterey Car Week.

Mark Your Calendars: August 18 Is Wear Your Helmet to Work Day

1 day ago in News

Wear your racing gear to work and win prizes.

You Need This: A Real 1LE Camaro

1 day ago in News

Chevy only built 62 1LE Camaros that year.

Little Car Show: Celebrating All Things Quirky and Small

2 days ago in Articles

As the name suggests, the Little Car Show is all about little cars.

Concours d’Lemons to Ruin Monterey Car Week Yet Again

2 days ago in News

What started as the anti-concours has transformed into a major event on the Monterey Car Week schedule.

You Need This: A Quite Eye-Catching Green Over Red Ferrari

2 days ago in News

Not your usual Ferrari color combo.

Your Projects: JDM Autozam AZ-1 Kei Car

2 days ago in News

What are the realities of importing a JDM kei car to the U.S.?

Bid on a New Helmet and Save Some Puppies and Kittens!

2 days ago in News

Four helmets will be auctioned off.

Tonight on Grassroots Motorsports LIVE! Lee Grimes of Koni Shocks

3 days ago in News

This may shock you, but suspension is arguably the most important part of going fast.


Grassroots Motorsports Magazine

Subscribe Today

Also get your instant access to the digital edition of Grassroots Motorsports Magazine!

Learn More