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Old 08-09-2020, 01:10 PM   #1
goodcar
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Default Car died, no start

I hate to admit it but I'm stumped. Car was running great, started to miss and lose power, acted like it was starving for fuel, then quit. All my attempts to fix have been to no avail.

Has good spark at coil wire end to ground, show firing on removed spark plug.
Compression shows 75+ on all cylinders. Cleaned carb, tried different carb. Vacuum gauge on wiper port on intake shows 7" when cranking. Verified timing, piston at top with timing plug indented.

Wouldn't this good compression indicate valves and head gasket ok. Thanks
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Old 08-09-2020, 01:41 PM   #2
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Default Re: Car died, no start

If it felt like it was starving for fuel, then I think I would investigate the fuel system more thoroughly.

Check fuel flow by removing the line that goes into carb and flowing gas straight into a mason jar. Should be a good, strong stream. (Get assistant inside the car open and close fuel valve for you.) Could have blocked a fuel screen or some trash in the line blocking it.

Check gas cap vent by removing cap and seeing if gas flows into the jar better.

Remove bottom plug (under main jet of carb) and hold jar under there while someone opens fuel valve. You should get a good steady stream there. If not, float valve is not working correctly.

Finally, don't laugh: Make sure you have plenty of gas in the gas tank. I've had more than one Model A owner call me stumped about why their car would not start and run, only to confirm with me that they were out of gas!
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Old 08-09-2020, 01:55 PM   #3
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Default Re: Car died, no start

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim/GA View Post
If it felt like it was starving for fuel, then I think I would investigate the fuel system more thoroughly.

Check fuel flow by removing the line that goes into carb and flowing gas straight into a mason jar. Should be a good, strong stream. (Get assistant inside the car open and close fuel valve for you.) Could have blocked a fuel screen or some trash in the line blocking it.

Check gas cap vent by removing cap and seeing if gas flows into the jar better.

Remove bottom plug (under main jet of carb) and hold jar under there while someone opens fuel valve. You should get a good steady stream there. If not, float valve is not working correctly.

Finally, don't laugh: Make sure you have plenty of gas in the gas tank. I've had more than one Model A owner call me stumped about why their car would not start and run, only to confirm with me that they were out of gas!
Good advice. I like the out of gas. Been there, done that!

Enjoy.
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Old 08-09-2020, 02:08 PM   #4
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Default Re: Car died, no start

7" of vacuum seems low to me, could be manifold/carb gasket or heaven forbid, jumped valve timing (cam gear). Just throwing it out there, something to think about.
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Old 08-09-2020, 02:11 PM   #5
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Default Re: Car died, no start

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Originally Posted by Jim/GA View Post
If it felt like it was starving for fuel, then I think I would investigate the fuel system more thoroughly.

Check fuel flow by removing the line that goes into carb and flowing gas straight into a mason jar. Should be a good, strong stream. (Get assistant inside the car open and close fuel valve for you.) Could have blocked a fuel screen or some trash in the line blocking it.

Check gas cap vent by removing cap and seeing if gas flows into the jar better.

Remove bottom plug (under main jet of carb) and hold jar under there while someone opens fuel valve. You should get a good steady stream there. If not, float valve is not working correctly.

Finally, don't laugh: Make sure you have plenty of gas in the gas tank. I've had more than one Model A owner call me stumped about why their car would not start and run, only to confirm with me that they were out of gas!
Checked all that--good.
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Old 08-09-2020, 02:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Car died, no start

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Take the gas cap off and try to start it.
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Old 08-09-2020, 04:28 PM   #7
Chuck Sea/Tac
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Default Re: Car died, no start

Are the plugs wet, or gas dripping out of carb throat after it cranks a bit, but won’t start. Another test for fuel, is a shot of ether in the carb throat. But don’t over do it.
You may have a stuck inlet valve or plugged carb filter.
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Old 08-09-2020, 05:49 PM   #8
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Default Re: Car died, no start

If you have a glass sediment bowl check it for water/trash
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Old 08-18-2020, 10:35 PM   #9
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Default Re: Car died, no start

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Originally Posted by goodcar View Post
I hate to admit it but I'm stumped. Car was running great, started to miss and lose power, acted like it was starving for fuel, then quit. All my attempts to fix have been to no avail.

Has good spark at coil wire end to ground, show firing on removed spark plug.
Compression shows 75+ on all cylinders. Cleaned carb, tried different carb. Vacuum gauge on wiper port on intake shows 7" when cranking. Verified timing, piston at top with timing plug indented.

Wouldn't this good compression indicate valves and head gasket ok. Thanks
Problem turned out out to be weak spark when cranking. Although firing on removed spark plug, apparently spark was not good enough. Noticed wiper tube from intake manifold getting warm from extended cranking--poor battery to frame connection. Still no fix until replacing coil. Previously installed new coil when problem first occurred. Went back to the original coil, bumped the starter, car started right up . This ordeal was very frustrating. Hope this info may help someone else with similar problem.
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Old 08-18-2020, 11:38 PM   #10
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Default Re: Car died, no start

I was just about to suggest you check that.
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Old 08-19-2020, 07:49 AM   #11
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Default Re: Car died, no start

Throwing parts at a problem doesn't help, especially when the parts are left in place ! Say for instance when you used a different coil it didn't fix the problem and left it in place. How do you know the replacement parts are good ? Once I replaced a starter 4 or 5 times and finely got a good one, parts store said we've had a bad rash of starters you'll get a good one sometime.
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Old 08-19-2020, 09:10 AM   #12
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I was just about to suggest you check that.
LOL, I came here to make a similar suggestion. Was out on a cruise with a buddy and when we when to disembark from the ferry, his truck (stock '47 ford) would turn over but wouldn't start so we push started it. The starter was drawing too much juice not leaving enough for the plugs to make a strong spark.
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Old 08-19-2020, 09:38 AM   #13
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Default Re: Car died, no start

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Throwing parts at a problem doesn't help, especially when the parts are left in place ! Say for instance when you used a different coil it didn't fix the problem and left it in place. How do you know the replacement parts are good ? Once I replaced a starter 4 or 5 times and finely got a good one, parts store said we've had a bad rash of starters you'll get a good one sometime.
Well this was a tricky one with 2 weak links pretty much occurring at the same time, would have been much easier if parts had failed completely instead of just degrading. The bad replacement coil was new out of the box and did produce a fairly decent blue spark but car wouldn't run until going back to the original.
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Old 08-19-2020, 08:01 PM   #14
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Default Re: Car died, no start

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LOL, I came here to make a similar suggestion. Was out on a cruise with a buddy and when we when to disembark from the ferry, his truck (stock '47 ford) would turn over but wouldn't start so we push started it. The starter was drawing too much juice not leaving enough for the plugs to make a strong spark.
It's not an uncommon thing.
FWIW, I recall many years ago, being impressed with the cleverness of the designers when a friend and I worked out what they had done to avoid the starter drag causing hard starting. They basically had two ignition systems, one worked on a low voltage - probably 50-60% of the battery voltage. It was this circuit that provided the spark when the starter was engaged and when the motor started, it switched back to the main circuit. Starting had always been easy but that suddenly changed which caused us to delve into the system. The problem was something else - I don't remember what now, only what a genius system it was. I don't even remember which car this was, we had so many between us and we always helped each other when there was any issue.
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Old 08-19-2020, 09:04 PM   #15
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It's not an uncommon thing.
FWIW, I recall many years ago, being impressed with the cleverness of the designers when a friend and I worked out what they had done to avoid the starter drag causing hard starting. They basically had two ignition systems, one worked on a low voltage - probably 50-60% of the battery voltage. It was this circuit that provided the spark when the starter was engaged and when the motor started, it switched back to the main circuit. Starting had always been easy but that suddenly changed which caused us to delve into the system. The problem was something else - I don't remember what now, only what a genius system it was. I don't even remember which car this was, we had so many between us and we always helped each other when there was any issue.
On the truck in question, the owners brother, who is an absolute WHIZ, shade tree mechanic, had put a switch in the truck that bypassed the starting system and provided full power to the coil on start up to avoid this exact situation. Unfortunately, Bert had given this truck to one of his grandsons and his son inlaw removed the bypass system. Then the grandson decided that the truck was too slow and gave it back.
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