Join Our Ford Truck Forum Today

Document your Ford truck project here and inspire others! Login/Register to view the site with fewer ads.

Engine shut off.

I have an 83 F150 4x4 with a 351w with a Holley 4b on an Edelbrock intake. I installed new push rods, lifter and rocker arm. While I was at it installed a new distributer, plugs and wires. It started and ran great for about a month. I was driving to work at 55 mph and I noticed the battery light flash and then the engine shut off. Then engine turns over freely without any unusual noises. If I crank it for about a minute or so it sound like it is getting a small spark in a cylinder. I shot some ether down the carb without any improvement. I swapped out coils and ignition control boxes. I am wondering if the ignition switch could be the problem. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
if you think the ignition switch is bad, first check all your fuses and then see if you have power at the coil with the key on. if you do check for power with the key on at the plugs for the ignition module. if you have 12v at both the coil and the module. i would pull the ignition module off and have it tested at your local auto parts store.

im not sure why the alt light flashed.

how to test and wiring can be found here

DNFXDLI great job on having this info on the site.


Top Poster Of Month
Check the wiring harnesses. I had my harness to the alternator fail on my 1983 F250 with the 351W.
Last edited:


Tonto Papadapolous
How about any safety switches ,like for starting in park position?
Have you checked for those?

If the neutral safety switch was bad/out of adjustment, I don't think the engine would turn over?

Big Jim F150

73-79 Ford Trucks Rock
If the neutral safety switch is bad, the engine WILL NOT turn over, I've had that happen on my 78 F-150 Ranger Lariat a few times, and there is no adjustment on the NSS. Please check my posts in the Gen 6 forums for more information on that subject. My username is Big Jim F150, and the posts are Neutral Safety Switch, or make references to that. Hopefully you'll find this helpful to you.smiliegitrdone

Big Jim F150

73-79 Ford Trucks Rock
Check your pickup wheel in your distributor, I had the same symptoms in my 78 F-150 with the 400 with a Holley 4bbl on it, and I'm running a GM Style HEI distributor, but I didn't have an alternator light blink, the truck would turn over, and then act like it would fire, but I had my pickup wheel replaced and it had taken care of my problem. Try wiggling your wires that come out of the base of your distributor, and see if you can get your truck to fire.smiliegitrdone

Recent Forum Posts