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weird problem...

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by 54pathfinder, Jun 6, 2012.

  1. 54pathfinder
    Joined: May 13, 2012
    Posts: 139

    from canada

    engine: 239 six pontiac flathead in a 1954 cheiftain


    1) running rich, soot on plugs, soot on driveway.

    2) looses power at wide open throttle

    3) will often not stop running when key is turned off

    4) will not produce enough power to go up a hill when timing is set
    according to marks

    5) seems to miss subtly at idle

    6) high voltage shocks when distributor is turned while engine running

    its getting worse and worse. also i cant find a carb kit for the WCD Carter carb which is flooding itself. one problem or several??
  2. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    My first thought is that something is wrong in the distributor and vacuum advance mechanism. I would take it out and visually go over every aspect of it, maybe replace all the components, especially the cap and condenser. If you can find a shop with a distributor machine that might help. Bushings can wear in them and give goofy performance.

  3. you is gonna need some wires and plugs , but need to fix the flood out problem too
    if you get the carb fixed and do the ignition then you could get it scoped out
    and it is going to take a 70 MPH decarbonization after fixing some of the problems

    i am in the middle of this on a car sitting for 3 years and have to buy a spare carb tomorrow, got the ign fixed today

  4. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 30,038


    1. Is the choke plate opening up all the way?

    2.. Check Ebay number 251078199674 for the carb kit. Not the least bit inexpensive but they do have it.

    Other than that all I can suggest is doing the normal things a person would do to see what shape the engine is in.

    Run a compression test

    Run a leak down test

    make sure that the timing gears or chain don't have a bunch of slack.

    Have the distributor checked out as suggested previously.
  5. Basic tune up and a carb kit, start with an engine condition check (compression test) and go from there.
  6. "T'RANTULA"
    Joined: Aug 6, 2011
    Posts: 662

    from Ohio


    Dont know if this helps or not...
  7. junk yard kid
    Joined: Nov 11, 2007
    Posts: 2,719

    junk yard kid

    wait, your hand gets shocked when you touch the distributor?
  8. 55Hydramatic
    Joined: Apr 24, 2011
    Posts: 459


    ^HA thats awsome
  9. Don's Hot Rods
    Joined: Oct 7, 2005
    Posts: 8,319

    Don's Hot Rods
    from florida

    That was what made me lean toward something not being right in there. Cracked cap, bad wires, but voltage is going astray it sounds like to me.

  10. dragster dude
    Joined: May 21, 2010
    Posts: 194

    dragster dude

    new dissy cap time also check that the timing marks are accurate
  11. bonez
    Joined: Jul 16, 2007
    Posts: 3,492

    from Slow lane

    Looks like at least 2 diffrent problems...
    The fact that it keeps runnin when you turn it off its most probably due to a vacuum leak, or way off timing, but if you say the timing is right.
    I had the dizzy shock me b4. Even only touchin the cables used to. It turned out one of the leads got melted for being to close to the heders and the wire was exposed.
    Good luck.
  12. When did needing a basic tune-up become a "Wierd problem"
    Yep there are several issues and those are addressed in a tune up.

    Above and beyond the tune-ups basics,
    Flooding carb is your biggest problem and that needs to be corrected first .

    You probably need to search a bit harder and deeper to find that carb kit.
  13. farmboyhotrodder
    Joined: Dec 19, 2011
    Posts: 66

    from PA

    No one mentioned that it may also be a cracked distributor cap. Hairline cracks cannot be seen.
    Do like the others said above. Check your vacuum advance. Check your timing. I adjust the timing on my Chevy truck by ear and drivability. Sometimes a timing light will tell you where it's supposed to be, but the engine may be worn some, so you have to advance it.
    Also, the ethanol fuel wreaks havoc with the accelerator pump plungers, not to mention the pot metal carburetor housing.
  14. 54pathfinder
    Joined: May 13, 2012
    Posts: 139

    from canada

    thanks guys i'll let you know what i find
  15. When you turn the key off, the ignition should stop firing, period. If the engine keeps running, you likely have a lot of carbon buildup (from the rich condition?) which is causing hot spots.

    Totally agree that if you are getting shocked when touching the cap, changing the cap, rotor, and wires are in order. Check for carbon tracks on the dist housing as mentioned. Once that process starts it will keep happening..

  16. Well you answered one question on your own the carb is flooding itself.

    second question may have also been answered by the first. Throttle blades open too far to compensate for flooding will cause run on.

    Cracked cap or bad wires or a combination of thre two. Also may need a new set of points properly adjusted. This may also cure 2 and 4.

    get it properly tunned and either adjust the float or replace the needle and seat and adjust the float then get back to us that it has been cured.
  17. bigalturk1
    Joined: Sep 23, 2010
    Posts: 367


    I agree, check compression first
  18. could snatch that boat anchor out of there and put in a nice389/421.....
  19. bonez
    Joined: Jul 16, 2007
    Posts: 3,492

    from Slow lane

    I had an intake leak once that caused the motor to keep fireing after the ignition was turned off, so it aint necessarely the cap.
    A severe leak from the intake should cause a whistle too btw, other than making the engine run like shite
  20. It probablly has a few basic issues going on. Agree that a compression test is a good idea before any real $$$ is expended. A real bad cap can give you a shock if the crack travels down the coil tower. That one may be visible from the outside. The carb and choke should be gone through and course the standard tune up and settings for that and the carb.

    Nothin' pretty getting a 58 year old relic sorted out, one step at a time and be prepared to get filthy and frustrated.

  21. overspray
    Joined: Jan 14, 2003
    Posts: 1,232


    My flathead ran like that, except I didn't get a shock from the dist. I had rebuilt the carb and found the float had a dent in it. I salvaged a real nice shiney perfect float from another carb. It flooded, ran shitty,sooted up the plugs, and gas poured down the carb. It seems I picked a float with a tiny hole in it and as it filled up with gas it sank in the bowl and the problem got progressively worse. I finally took the carb apart and found the bad float and replaced it with the original dented one. A stuck or dirty needle valve will act the same.

    Something to check, anyway.
  22. sdluck
    Joined: Sep 19, 2006
    Posts: 2,795


    Spray water from a spray bottle onto the cap and wires,to find the spark loss
  23. other fun ways include watching it run in the dark and grabbing wires until you jump or crap yourself! :D
  24. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,706

    Atwater Mike


    Internal (from breaker plate to dist. case)

    External (Dist. case loose at mounting, you grab it while running and you're the ground!)

    Try it again...
  25. I dated this broad that wasn't real bright once, of course she was dating me, and when my hawg seemed like it wasn't getting fire I would pull the plugs and she would stick a finger in the magneto wire. I told her that if the put her pinky finger on the head it wouldn't hurt.

    I always knew if it was getting fire because I would hear owe then get slugged in the shoulder. :D
  26. 40FordGuy
    Joined: Mar 24, 2008
    Posts: 2,907


    Run - on after ign shut off can be from a too fast idle speed. You didn't say how long it runs on....but if your alternator is incorrectly wired,'ll keep running , with some configurations......

  27. jcmarz
    Joined: Jan 10, 2010
    Posts: 4,633

    from Chino, Ca

    Sounds like old age.
  28. Moose223
    Joined: Sep 17, 2007
    Posts: 147


    Hey P&B you are a sick individual.....Good job
  29. That would have to be some pretty screwed up wiring!

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