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Technical Dissolving dried up gasoline

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 62rebel, Dec 30, 2020.

  1. 62rebel
    Joined: Sep 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,817


    Got a carb with a good 3/8" of varnish in the float bowl; good and hard. Best way to remove it without destroying the carb?
  2. Tman
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 35,149


    warhorseracing likes this.
  3. caper
    Joined: Jun 12, 2009
    Posts: 36

    from Cape Cod

  4. Bob Lowry
    Joined: Jan 19, 2020
    Posts: 751

    Bob Lowry

    I use lacquer thinner at first, acetone if needed next for any leftover residue.

  5. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 7,506


    3/8th? I’d do some scraping first and let it sit in Berrymans
  6. KoolKat-57
    Joined: Feb 22, 2010
    Posts: 3,037

    from Dublin, OH

    Berrymans the answer.
    stillrunners likes this.
  7. Beanscoot
    Joined: May 14, 2008
    Posts: 2,185


    Is the carb made of zinc or aluminum?
    Warm solution of TSP works well, but keep a close eye on it to make sure it doesn't etch or dissolve the metal.

    It's a medium strength alkali. Strong enough to dissolve most gunk but can also attack reactive metals if the solution is too hot.
  8. harleyd20
    Joined: Dec 20, 2020
    Posts: 44


    I will share a trick taught to me by my grandfather. He and his father (my great grandfather) were farmers in Texas. I loved it when we traveled there when I was a kid, I got to play in the barn and work with them on their equipment, they taught me a lot. This is how they use to clean the parts of the fuel systems when they needed to and keep in mind they couldn’t just run down to Auto Zone. Get a large metal can (1 pound coffee can) that’s clean and fill it with water, stay with me, suspend the carb or parts in it from a coat hanger. Break out the torch with your rosebud tip and heat the water to a full boil. Boil for 5 or 10 minutes, remove from the water, blow with your air hose and hang to cool. Remember to use your eye protection. Repeat if necessary until clean this may take several times before the varnish is removed. Let your parts cool completely between attempts and make sure you do this where there is plenty of fresh air, doing this to a clean carb will release more fumes than you think. You just built yourself a mini hot tank. The heat should help to soften the varnish and the movement of the water will help to break it up. I have boiled many old Harley carbs with much success. The heat built up in the parts themselves will evaporate any residual moisture the air hose may have missed. There should not be enough heat buildup to distort anything. A simple yet inexpensive fix that should work for you. Good Luck to you.
    egads, stillrunners, AHotRod and 9 others like this.
  9. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 17,445


    I buy cheap lacquer thinner by the five gallon can. It dissolves lots of stuff, and won't hurt any sort of metal. If will evaporate, so if you can put the part and some thinner in a smaller closed can it might last longer.
  10. Truck64
    Joined: Oct 18, 2015
    Posts: 5,224

    from Ioway

    Varnish remover or paint stripper. Remember methylene chloride? Take old paint off a dresser in five minutes. Wear gloves! Pretty sure it's banned by now.
  11. 62rebel
    Joined: Sep 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,817


    Great suggestions! Definitely want to save this carb because it's still wearing the id tag.
  12. BamaMav
    Joined: Jun 19, 2011
    Posts: 5,190

    from Berry, AL

    I've got a gallon of GUNK carb and parts cleaner. It's a few years old, don't remember exactly when I bought it, but it still works great. I cleaned the Marvel Schriber carb on my Pa in laws 8N tractor this year, came out looking like new inside and out.
  13. 1952henry
    Joined: Jan 8, 2006
    Posts: 914


    Not putting down other methods, but a closed container with enough acetone to cover the carb works for me. I leave it for 24+ hours. Once dry, into the bead blaster. I then blow out all passages, and follow that up with blasts from canned carb cleaner into all passages. For the next to final step, a bath in diluted phosphoric acid. Well, a series of dips, and scrubbing with a brass toothbrush. Clean and shiny. The last step is a dip in chromate to preserve finish. Check my album for results.
    KoolKat-57 likes this.
  14. 62rebel
    Joined: Sep 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,817


    Used gasoline and lacquer thinner; got a good start on freeing it up. Seems like someone painted the throat area for some reason.

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