View Full Version : MSD SCI similar problem to the 2000 civic
08-20-2003, 01:23 PM
I have a 95 Honda Civic DX (SOHC, 1.5 ltr)
Ever since I installed the MSD SCI ignition, I've had my share of problems. First, I have the Venom 400 performance module on the car to begin with which was an OK upgrade; when I installed the MSD, the car would then hiccup and get off to a bad start and I would have to rev it over 3000 to get off to an ok start just to get from stop light to stop light. What I installed was the MSD SCI ignition, MSD 8mm wires, MSD blaster coil and distributor cap. I still had the stock NGK spark plugs, so I decided to check the spark plugs to see if they were the problem. I purchased some Bosche (I believe non-platinum) and it seems they fixed the problem due to the hiccuping stopping But now the problem was that the Venom activation light would flicker like it wasn't fully functional at all times.
So let's get to today's problem, I tossed the Venom due to wasted performance and I got a NOS nitrous kit with a 50 shot and decided that maybe with the MSD, the elevated spark should work well with the nitrous. But now here comes a new wave of problems. First, when I sprayed one of the 4 times, the car would basically give up at 4700 rpm's as if a govenor kicked in. But I don't have a govenor on my car and I wasn't even over 80 mph when this happened. I talked to the NOS people at Holley and they stated that I'm running the wrong spark plugs and I need to fix that problem and some other nitrous answers that I asked them.
My second problem is now that the car is hiccuping again like it was when I first installed the MSD ignition. I starts off real bad and this time it hiccups during drive in other gears as well, instead of just hiccuping in first gear like before. I know I mixed and match a lot of manufactures but if you can guys can tell me what kind of spark plugs I should be running when spraying nitrous. Please let me know. Thanks.
08-20-2003, 09:55 PM
I am sure by now that you are getting very frustrated with all the problems so lets see what we can do to get you going. First off, it is not a problem to mix and match different parts from different companies as long as they are compatible with each other. When you refer to the engine "hiccuping", what do you mean by that? Is the engine shutting off and then coming back on? Is the engine backfiring through the throttle body? Is the engine experiencing a miss fire? When you had the NGK plugs in the engine where they conventional plugs or where they a higher end plug? What gap and heat range where they? When you switched over to the Bosch plugs did you stay with the stock heat range or go a step colder because of the nitrous you where adding? For a stock D15B7 engine the correct NGK spark plug would be a ZFR5F-11 which is a mid heat (5) range plug. For nitrous applications I would suggest going to a colder plug like a (7). What gap did you run the plugs at when you added the nitrous? When you run nitrous, the cylinder pressure in the combustion chamber increases and therefore you have to reduce the plug gap. I would suggest that you take a look at the NGK link listed below for additional information on which spark plug to run. As for the "hiccuping", you need to look at a few things to determine what is causing the problem. First, remove the distributor cap and look very closely at the area between the caps terminals to see if you see any carbon tracking (burned area). If you see any sign of a burn, replace the cap. Also look at the rotor to make sure the tip of the rotor to make sure it also is not burnt. Look at the contact point where the cap transfers the high voltage to the rotor and check to see if the button and spring are still in good shape. Start the engine at night in the dark and see if any arcing is occurring around the cap, spark plug wires, coil, coil wire or spark plugs. If you see any, that is a good place to inspect closer. Remove the spark plug wires and check them with an ohmmeter to see that they are making continuity from end to end. Look at the porcelain on the sides of the spark plugs (where the boot slides over the plug) and see if there are small black dots running down the side of the plug. If you see this on the plugs, it is a sign that the terminal inside the boot was not clipped onto the spark plug fully. Replace the plug if you see any sign of the dots or a burned mark.
08-21-2003, 08:11 AM
Thanks for getting back to me.
As for the "hiccuping", it basically stutters and chatters until I reach a certain RPM. It used to just do it when getting off the line in first, but now I believe I may of roasted a few spark plugs due to it's chattering in low RPM's in other gears. The car is parked and I have yet to check them but I will today after I get off work. I will also look inside the distributor cap also.
The NGK plugs were stock I believe, never been changed as long as I had it and then I put in the Bosche when I upgraded. As for the gapping of the Bosche spark plugs, I believe I put them at .035 - .040. I've had these spark plugs in for a while so it's been a while.
And the NGK link, is it in this post or on the MSD site? A friend of mine recommended the NGK Copper Plugs: V Power Spark, but I know when running nitrous you have to run a colder spark like you stated. I just want my system to run smoothly and efficiently. Can you help me?
08-21-2003, 08:28 AM
Sorry about not including the link, I have listed them below so you can check them out.
08-22-2003, 05:37 PM
Hey! I contacted NGK and they gave me the proper spark plug I should be running but I told them I'm running an upgraded ignition from you guys and they said they wouldn't go over 6 (one step colder) for my car; you guys recommended 7. They stated that if I ran with the 7, I wouldn't be able to drive on the street normally. My question is, since I have the MSD, will I be able to run fine with the 7 given my modifications? And any gap recommendations for my car would be helpful too. I plan on buying the spark plugs this weekend so if I write back saying I am selling a shell of an car cause the engine blew, don't be surprised!
08-22-2003, 07:26 PM
I recommended the colder (7) plug because you mentioned that you where running nitrous and I wanted to make sure that you where on the safe side of the plug temperature. NGK is correct in recommending no more than a (6) on the street, but be careful when you run the nitrous. Be sure to check the plug condition after running the nitrous to make sure you are not to lean or are seeing any signs of detonation on the plugs.
08-24-2003, 07:51 PM
Thanks man! I got the colder NGK spark plugs (6), gapped them at .039 and sprayed and everything went fine. I pulled the old spark plugs and the third cylinder spark plug was totally melted down to the thread. I ran a 14.34 at 92 mph at the track this Saturday with the new modifications. Considering what the stock output HP (102 hp) to what I have now, I figure that's pretty impressive. Oh yeah, that was with the good ole 50 shot along with the other modifications that I didn't mention before. I'm going to wait a while before I throw that 75 shot in there, this is just in the meanwhile before I blow it so I can get that GSR motor. I think when I actually do the 75 shot I will retard my timing so nothing stupid will happen. Well, thanks again and keep up the good work.
08-24-2003, 10:02 PM
Good run! I'm glad it ran great. Make sure ou keep an eye on those plugs and I would highly suggest retarding the timing when you hit the 75 shot. Keep us posted on your results.
10-19-2003, 09:00 AM
Ok, I'm back. Only this time I am running forced induction with a intercooled turbo setup on my car. (Sold the nitrous) I went back to the stock plugs when I took the nitrous off and now my question is, should I run the colder plugs that I was running when I had nitrous? Or should I run a different formula for a turbocharged car?
10-19-2003, 08:53 PM
Keep the colder plugs in! The forced induction basically does the same thing as the nitrous, it increases cylinder pressure which can result in preignition or detonation if you are running to hot of a spark plug.
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