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Re: 87 Ramcharger not charging
The distributor and coil have nothing to do with charging, the alternator, voltage regulator. amp gauge on the dash, battery and ignition switch ,,thats your charging system, and its always a problem on these older ramchargers most people who have had these trucks for a long time know this , i put 3 batterys 2 alt. 2 voltage regulators in my 87 and a starter , tell me the whole story and ill tell ya what you have to do
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There should be a small white ceramic block on the firewall - this component cuts the battery voltage from 12 to 9 volts for the coil and ignition system. It has 4 wires and is called a ballast resistor. You may need a book with the wiring diagram to be able to test it. You should have battery voltage going in and something like 9 volts coming out. You can also run a wire with a fuse from the battery to the positive side of the coil to check the system. Disconnect the factory wire from the coil first.
The most likely cause is you have a bad distributor. The coil is inside the distributor and when it gets hot, it quits creating spark. The testing to verify this is a little complicated and takes a little knowhow. To test the coil in the distributor first disconnect the Automatic Shut Down (ASD) relay (located on the drivers side on the firewall in a group of three relays, it is the middle one) and the Powertrain Control Module (PCM) (on the drivers side in the front of engine compartment to the right of the air filter housing) connectors.
Next, remove the distributor cap and connect a grounded jumper wire near the coil tower. This is to check for spark jumping from the coil.
Jumper pin 30 to pin 87 at the ASD relay.
Check for 12 volts to the Dark Green/Orange wire at the single wire connector at the distributor. This wire feeds the positive side of the coil.
5. Connect a 12v test light to B+. With the probe end of the test light, momentarily tap the Black/Gray wire at pin 11of the PCM. This action should cause the coil to fire. If there is no spark out of the coil tower during this step, the distributor has failed and needs to be replaced. If there is spark from the coil tower check all powers and grounds at the PCM. Hope this helps. Good luck!!
Pull the coil wire out of center of distributor cap and lay it close to where you unpluged it from distributor cap, and turn over engine if coil is good you will see the spark jump. If no spark coil bad.