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Offline BrandyMB

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Bad Idle..
« on: March 27, 2015, 11:21:29 PM »
Im working on a 74 Pinto 2.3 for my wife which was stored for 14 years. Only needed a few things to make it roadworthy. Being its a 74 in the kingdom of CA, I removed all the smog stuff and vacuum lines and ran the distributor vacuum advance straight to ported vacuum off the bottom of the carb. Have installed a complete new tuneup kit, points, plugs, condenser, rotor, cap and plugs etc. Problem is, I cannot get it to idle. It is very rough and smooths out if I close down the choke plates or give it a bit of throttle. It acts like it has a vacuum leak at idle but there are no open points, everything is capped off. Ive had two other mechanics look at it and we are all puzzled. Any suggestions will be GREATLY appreciated!
Mark

Offline HOSS429

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2015, 07:59:48 AM »
if it has power brakes unplug the brake booster vacuum line and plug it up for a moment .. my 80 had a bad booster causing a vacuum leak and a miss at idle on the number 3 or 4 cylinder ..it` been a day or two since i had it ... 

Offline 76hotrodpinto

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2015, 09:11:35 AM »
Should run a compression test and leak down test. Do you know why it was parked for 14 years?
1976 half hatch 2.3 turbo w/t5.

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2015, 09:48:44 AM »
Thanks for the replies! No power brakes for one, and for two, it was parked cuz it belonged to a lady who parked it in her garage and let it sit while she drove her Ford Explorer. Just for grins, Ill do a compression test etc on it.
Mark

Offline dennisofaz

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2015, 02:24:13 PM »
Hi Mark,


I have a 74 with the 2.3 and you might need a little more advance in your distributor, or an adjustment to the mixture screw on the carburator, maybe a quarter to a half turn out.


Best regards,


Dennis

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2015, 02:49:22 PM »
Well, the manual calls for 6 degrees BTDC and I have it at around 10 or so. The idle mixture screw has no real effect whatsoever.. I wonder it there's something stuck in one of the jets or orifices..?

Offline dennisofaz

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2015, 02:54:09 PM »
On my car the mixture screw has a big effect.  You might be right about something in the carb.


Dennis


Offline 76hotrodpinto

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2015, 08:18:28 PM »
Carb issues would be pretty likely. I know if I sat around for 14 years, I'd have crust in my orifices too.
1976 half hatch 2.3 turbo w/t5.

Offline dga57

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2015, 10:17:38 PM »
Carb issues would be pretty likely. I know if I sat around for 14 years, I'd have crust in my orifices too.

Wouldn't we all?!?!?

Dwayne ;D
Pinto Car Club of America - Serving the Ford Pinto enthusiast since 1999.

Offline ToniJ1960

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2015, 03:33:58 AM »
 Usually when the mixture screw wont cut off the gas it means theres too much getting through in another circuit on the carb. For me its always been a leaky power valve diaphragm thats the first sign its leaking. To test it just take the top half off the carb turn it over press the power valve in, put your thumb over the little hole on the edge and if it stays depressed its ok if it pops back out when you let it go with your thumb over that hole the diaphragm is leaking.

 Most likely it is leaking. Might be other issues with the carb, like loading up (dumping gas over into the throat after idling a minute due to the float not set right). All I ever really do to mine is just on the top half.

Offline dick1172762

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2015, 09:17:49 AM »
Good call Tonij!  Another problem is the gas will dry up and leave crud when it not run over time. Crud will not wash out with new gas when started at a later time too. Stuff will turn to concrete over time.
Its better to be a has-been, than a never was.

Offline amc49

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2015, 12:03:11 PM »
'The idle mixture screw has no real effect whatsoever.'

The carb has an issue. You MUST get some effect from turning that screw and the indicator there. Provided we are talking the correct screw of course.

No way should one expect a carb sitting that long to work right, oddly some do but most will not. Once the fuel dries up in bowl it takes any rubber parts along with it, they get rock hard and then trying to start carb with new fuel later but not letting car sit at least 48 hrs. to then reinvigorate the rock hard rubber parts then sees them tear or other fault when you start car up. Meaning power valve and accel pump diaphragms are most likely junk now. The dried up fuel often clogs small idle feed ports as well and then you often physically must clear them back out, the varnish can be hard as rock and simply setting in fuel will not dissolve that back out. Aforementioned problems even worse if car used ethanol laced fuel before it was allowed to sit.

First thing I do on any car coming back up after a long sit like that is go through the carb. I won't lift a finger to start it till done.

Offline ToniJ1960

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2015, 05:54:47 PM »
 That power valve diaphragm will affect the idle because when they leak the vacuum at idle cant hold it closed and you get enrichment you dont need at idle. The car will run pretty well at high speeds though.

Offline amc49

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2015, 06:40:02 PM »
Absolutely and will be rich enough that mixture needle will not cut off enough fuel to lean it back out. The PV often is worth up to ten jet numbers in what it contribute to fuel, WAY too much for idle only.

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #14 on: March 30, 2015, 07:10:00 PM »
I appreciate all the replies from you fine folks out there. I will have the carb redone, I have a kit for it. Funny thing is though, when the motor is warmed up and the choke is wide open, it idles like crap but if I close it down some by hand the motor smooths out and speeds up. It acts like almost a vacuum leak at idle. And I looked at EVERYTHING! Nowhere to leak.
Mark

Offline amc49

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2015, 03:15:39 PM »
Then that says possible clog in idle fuel passage....... .............. ...And why the mixture screw has no effect. You could simply pop out the idle fuel jets that screw into top sides of carb at each barrel and clean them to save the carb job maybe, but some have at least one of the jets made non-removeable so as to stop emission settings tampering. Several places those clogs can occur usually at the smallest restrictions in the passage as capillary action tends to keep them covered with a fuel bubble that then cooks to a plug with turned off engine heat. Why carb jets tend to be one of the first places to clog. Easiest for trash to plug the smallest hole as well.

The mixture screw only has an effect over a very small range, if the carb error makes mixture way rich or lean the screw then appears to quit working, it cannot affect the range enough with its' limited action.

Offline 78_starsky

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2015, 11:16:35 AM »
Any update on this problem?

I know this sounds basic but it has happened to me more than once.  Before you tried to start the car by any chance did you buy a couple new line filters and one for the carb inlet?

What i have learned (done) on cars that sit for a length of time is to get new rubber fuel line to replace the old stuff. i will slice into the line before the pump and place a filter there, then i will slice in a new one after the pump, then replace the carb inlet filter.

reason being this will (should) eliminate any rust that is in the old metal gas and if water has condensed in the lines.

It is a pain to run the line and filters but it will work.

on my car when i got it running i have 1 that is plumbed just out of the tank, then 1 screwed into the electric pump, these 2 are about 1 foot from the tank.  next i have 1 that is after the metal line before the carb, then a last one at the carb inlet. The one that is after the line before the carb catches tons of rust from the line (i never replaced it when i got the car running.

food for thought.  cheers

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #17 on: April 04, 2015, 11:39:55 AM »
I appreciate the reply and advice, Starsky. I probably wont be able to get back on the car till next week. I had another small project get in the way, I picked up a 1966 pinball machine for my shop and am finishing up getting it all operational (I was an arcade mechanic for some earlier life years). Ill bet the carb is all fulla junk..

Happy Easter all!

Mark

Offline rdrew1956

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #18 on: April 04, 2015, 08:57:58 PM »
I had the same bad idle smoothed out when driving.  I went problem all the checks for vacuum leaks, tune up etc.  Ran like one cylinder was dead.  It turned out to be blown head gasket.

Good luck, Bob

Offline amc49

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2015, 10:31:20 AM »
'... i will slice in a new one after the pump, then replace the carb inlet filter.'

An excellent idea and I do it too. All those years can fill the tank with fine powder rust that goes right through the tank inlet sock and then stacks up in the carb bowl to make trouble. The super small carb inlet filter is garbage there and clogs in a minute, I use the biggest paper type filter I can get patched into the line between pump and carb. Preferably clear so I can see how much crap is in it. If car brought up after a long downtime you may end up changing that filter say twice in the first month of operating the car. After that the crud will drop off. Ethanol use if they use it where you are makes that rust issue MUCH worse.

Look at modern cars now and how big the filters are, they are ten times bigger than they used to be, there's a reason for that.......... ....

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #20 on: April 13, 2015, 12:41:25 PM »
Well i finally got back on it. I took the top off the carb and there was all of maybe 1/4 inch of fuel in the float bowl. I put a kit into the carb, added another filter (there was some very fine crap in the bottom of the bowl), cleaned out all the passages and jets. Saw no clogs. Put back together, the float was set at the right level according to the kit, and it still runs exactly the same. I cannot find a decel valve anywhere on the motor. And I looked everywhere. damn. What next?
Mark

Offline Pintosopher

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #21 on: April 13, 2015, 01:34:11 PM »
Well i finally got back on it. I took the top off the carb and there was all of maybe 1/4 inch of fuel in the float bowl. I put a kit into the carb, added another filter (there was some very fine crap in the bottom of the bowl), cleaned out all the passages and jets. Saw no clogs. Put back together, the float was set at the right level according to the kit, and it still runs exactly the same. I cannot find a decel valve anywhere on the motor. And I looked everywhere. damn. What next?
Mark
Let's ask a question about how the intake is working for you. Have you checked manifold vacuum at the area under the Butterflies of the carb? With a dial gauge the reading should be 11-17 Hg of vacuum with a steady needle at idle rpm. It should drop when you crack open the throttle as vacuum is highest with the butterflies nearly closed at idle. If you can't get at least 11 inches of vacuum at idle or the needle jumps back and forth, you have a serious vacuum leak or a intake valve seating problem in one or more cylinders. Adding choke to the air flow is only masking a bigger problem as it does appear a lean issue is at hand.
 I don't think Ford installed Decel valves on the 2.3L in 74, only the early 74 with 2.0L motors seemed to have them, if equipped they could leak and disturb mixture beneath the butterflies.

 Pintosopher, mixing a 14 to 1 without ethanol in my beverages ;D
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Offline 76hotrodpinto

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2015, 02:03:25 PM »
Have you checked the compression yet?
1976 half hatch 2.3 turbo w/t5.

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #23 on: April 13, 2015, 02:26:44 PM »
Pintosopher: It has 15" at idle, cold. If i open the choke more than maybe 1/2" at that point, it just dies.

Offline Pintosopher

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #24 on: April 13, 2015, 02:44:47 PM »
Pintosopher: It has 15" at idle, cold. If i open the choke more than maybe 1/2" at that point, it just dies.
Within Range, but only will idle with Choke closed? Steady 15 inches no flutter? Lowest Rpms while you can keep it running?
 Assuming that the engine has a good leakdown check done , good within spec Compression in all cylinders, Crank, Cam and Distributor properly lined up , We're then looking for either carb or ignition issues.  It always boils down to verifying mechanical , then spark, then fuel mixture. Any system or component that works within these parameters can mess it up. Rare situations like a cracked head do occur and would be difficult to find without specialized equipment or disassembly.
 I seem to recall finding a cracked EGR block on my wife's old 2.3L 74. and nothing would work up until I fixed that first. Huge vacuum leak under the carb then. Check that if you have a EGR.
Yes, it is possible to study and become a master of Pintosophy.. Not a religion , nothing less than a life quest for non conformity and rational thought. What Horse did you ride in on?

Check my Pinto Poems out...

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #25 on: April 13, 2015, 02:51:52 PM »
sounds good. ill pull it off and see.

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #26 on: April 13, 2015, 04:15:50 PM »
well i pulled the egr valve off and made a block plate and put it on. No change.

Offline ToniJ1960

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2015, 12:15:08 AM »
 I think you still may want to replace that power valve diaphragm but it may not be your whole problem. One place known for vacuum leaks on these cars is the mounting bolts at the base of the carb check to see if theyre tight they somehow work their way loose.

Offline BrandyMB

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #28 on: April 16, 2015, 07:06:30 PM »
Ok. I pulled the carb and gave it to a friend for a complete going thru. He did and didnt find anything serious except for some dirt. I put it back on and no change. still wont idle once the choke opens. I cant think of anything else. New ignitions components all the way around and set correctly, new timing belt, 14" vacuum at base of carb. dont know what else to do. Got no more hair to pull out. What could i be missing..?
mark

Offline amc49

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Re: Bad Idle..
« Reply #29 on: April 17, 2015, 12:29:45 AM »
And so the head banging into the brick wall begins........ ...

If the carb mixture screws still have no effect you haven't cleaned carb yet.  Or a vacuum leak not found. Or dead fuel pressure, you mention low level in fuel bowl, if car was just running prior to that teardown a big indicator there.

Compression test first, cars usually sit 14 years because something wrong with them (sound familiar?). To make sure you're not wasting time on anything you do. If not done you can spend the next solid month on work and still be in the same boat.