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61LaRk4dr
04-29-2006, 05:29 PM
I just recently purchased a 1961 Studebaker Lark 4-dr sedan as my first project car. This vehicle is equipped with the ohv 170 six cylinder. I have for many weeks now, been trying to get this vehicle to start. However all it does is crank. Another issue is when the engine cranks it will periodically shoot raw gasoline out of the carburetor, and sometimes it will even ignite, shooting a flame out of the carburetor. I have a reason to believe that it is the timing, but when I checked to see if the timing was off (making sure that the IGN on the vibration dampener was marked and making sure that the rotor in the distributor was pointing to the number one terminal) I found out that everything seems to be in order. What could I be dealing with?

Roscomacaw
04-29-2006, 06:04 PM
Shoots WHERE - from the carb??? Down the throat or...? Is this just some random action or is it when you actuate the throttle linkage (it's supposed to shoot a squirt when you move the throttle);)
Now, if it's squirting and you're not moving the throttle, then you've got a problem and it's probably to do with the carb's needle/seat assembly not regulating the input of fuel.
This COULD be a reason not to start if the engine is perpetually flooded.
The plug wires COULD be wrong even tho you've checked as you say you have. Since the timing mark comes up TWICE during the 4-stroke proceedure of a given cylinder, the wires (assuming someone else fitted them without assuring that #1 was on the FIRING stroke and not the exhaust stroke[xx(]) could be 180 out.
To check this, bring the timing mark up like you did before, but make sure it's the Ignition stroke and not the exhaust stroke. This would BTW, be cause for the engine to backfire like you've mentioned. Timing's all wrong and the ignition fires at the wrong point in the 4-cycle proceedure.;)

Miscreant at large.

1957 Transtar 1/2ton
1960 Larkvertible V8
1958 Provincial wagon
1953 Commander coupe
1957 President 2-dr
1955 President State
1951 Champion Biz cpe
1963 Daytona project FS

jrkelly
04-29-2006, 06:37 PM
I've had many Larks, esp. OHV-6's. My 1st thought would be to advise you to see if you can get a copy of the 59-64 Studebaker Shop Manual. Go to the DIAGNOSIS section and look for the section "ENGINE STARTS HARD OR WILL NOT START". This is probably one of the greatest pieces of automotive technical literature ever written. Start from the top and check the items mentioned skipping the battery-you said the car cranks.

Next thing you can do right now is to get a small tack hammer and gently tap the fuel bowl on the carburetor while someone cranks the car. You're going to be tapping around the area where the fuel line enters the carburetor so remove the air cleaner. My guess is that the needle valve may be stuck open or the float won't drop. You might get lucky and then the problem will be permanently remedied by a carburetor rebuild. Make sure you are seeing fuel squirting in the chamber when you activate the throttle or someone hits the gas pedal.

If you suspect the engine is flooded (smell of raw gas, backfire, etc.) then you have to unload the choke which is easy to do. Get in the car and mash that gas pedal all the way to the floorboard. This will open the choke unloader. Hold it there for an "Our Father" or so and release the gas pedal. Try starting it again.

2nd thing, check for spark. Gas can ignite by compression alone, I've seen this myself so remove the high-tension lead from the ignition coil at the distributor and touch it to the block while someone cranks the engine. You should see a strong spark and if you don't remember to hold that lead with a rag wrapped around it you'll see lots more than sparks as you pick yourself up from the garage floor-use a rag or hold the lead with a set of electrician's pliers. Lotta jolt potential here. Replace it and remove the other end of the lead and check if you see oil in the ign. coil tower.
If you do, bad coil. R/R on that.

Of course, the suggestions regarding timing are true too but my gut feeling is that this car has been sitting for awhile and I'm going to bet that you're looking on a carb rebuild minimum to get this thing dependable. Lucky you, Carter Carbs are about the easiest carbs to rebuild and they just last darn near forever.

tstclr
04-29-2006, 07:04 PM
When you do get it started. Change the oil-it is probably full of gas.

Todd


63 Lark 2dr Sedan

JDP
04-29-2006, 07:08 PM
Once a engine is badly flooded, it'll often fuel foul the plugs and it won't start. If you have a bad needle and seat, or a stuck float, fix that and install fresh plugs.

Studebaker On The Net http://stude.com
64 R2 4 speed Challenger
63 R2 4 speed GT Black
63 R2 4 speed GT White
63 Avanti
54 3R Pickup

studegary
04-29-2006, 07:56 PM
My guess is that at least one intake valve is sticking open and the car is now flooded and the spark plugs are probably fouled. How long has it been since you know that this engine was running properly? Was anything done to it other than lack of use? Is the compression good and even across all six cylinders?

Obviously you have some ignition, although perhaps either at the incorrect time in the cycle or an intake valve is not closing.

Gary L.
1954 Commander Starliner (restomod)
1959 DeLuxe pickup (restomod)

gordr
04-30-2006, 03:30 AM
quote:Originally posted by 61LaRk4dr

I just recently purchased a 1961 Studebaker Lark 4-dr sedan as my first project car. This vehicle is equipped with the ohv 170 six cylinder. I have for many weeks now, been trying to get this vehicle to start. However all it does is crank. Another issue is when the engine cranks it will periodically shoot raw gasoline out of the carburetor, and sometimes it will even ignite, shooting a flame out of the carburetor. I have a reason to believe that it is the timing, but when I checked to see if the timing was off (making sure that the IGN on the vibration dampener was marked and making sure that the rotor in the distributor was pointing to the number one terminal) I found out that everything seems to be in order. What could I be dealing with?


To echo Biggs here: it shoots gas from where? Are we talking gas vapor puffing out the throat of the carb, or a squirt of liquid gasoline? That car should be equipped with either a Carter AS or RBS carb, and both, IIRC, have a small brass tube at about a 45 angle in the carb throat that serves as a vent for the fuel bowl. If the float has sunk, or the needle and seat are bad, the fuel pump can force fuel out that vent tube in spurts. If that is what you are seeing, tear down the carb and service the float, needle, and seat. I don't necessarily mean replace all those parts, but examine them and determine which has failed and what is needed to make it good again. A foreign object that prevents the needle from seating will cause this problem, and simply removing it constitutes a fix. OTOH, if the float needle has developed a deep wear groove where it meets the seat, replacement is indicated. That's what I mean by "service" in this instance.

If you are seeing fuel vapor puffing back, with occasional backfires, then stuck intake valves or timing issues are indicated, as posted by Gary and Kelly.

A compression check would be an obvious first step in further diagnosis.

Gord Richmond, within Weasel range of the Alberta Badlands

studebakerkid
04-30-2006, 04:52 AM
To check for the intake valves not being closed a simple way to do it is to ground out the ignition system by grounding the coil wire and then remove the air cleaner and then stick you ear over the carb. Have someone else crank over the engine or use a remoter starter tool. If you feel a poof of air on your ear and hear a poof then you have an intake valve that is not closing.

If you are having carb problems Clamp off the rubber fuel line so that no more fuel is pumped to the carb. When you have the timeing right as Mr BNigs outlined and the plugs replaced like JP stated the just use a dropper to shoot a bit of fuel down the carb throat or you can mas the accellerator once. If you have everthinbg close you will know it when she fires off briefly.

One thing that I have done with badly flooded engines is to remove the spark plugs and ground out the ignition system and crank the engine over a bit to get the extra fuel blown out of the engine......dont do gthis with a vehicle with a catalytic converter......that is unless you want to make a loud noise when you eventually start the engine.

If the oil has a bunch of fuel in it you better change the oil too.

If you car is ugly then it better be fast.....

65 2dr sedan
64 2dr sedan (Pinkie)
61 V8 Tcab
61 Tcab 20R powered
55 Commander Wagon
54 Champion Wagon
46 Gibson Model A

chrysleritis
04-30-2006, 08:35 PM
So different car, but same basic problem for me this afternoon. I'm working on staring up my 1950 Champion. Hasn't been run in about a year. So it cranks just fine, I have good spark from the coil and plugs, the firing order is right, the timing seems close enough, and the fuel pump is going gangbusters. It occasionally coughs for a cylinder or two, and I have checked everything else, so dang it, I guess I have to pull the carb and start carefully checking for something clogged in that. Bad air flow, flooded, I reckon. So I take off the carb, and
I tip it over to empty the fuel bowl into a glass jar, hold open the choke valve, and plonk, out falls the original wing nut which used to hold the air cleaner on. That can't be good for any operation in the carb. I'll clean the carb out a bit and then re-install and try again tomorrow. But it for sure sounds like you have it thoroughly flooded and very rich. Look for bad air or vacuum flow through the carb.

imported_n/a
04-30-2006, 11:34 PM
Cars that have been in storage a long time usually have lots of particulate matter in the gas tank that can cause the needle in the carburetor not to close on the seat, and cause flooding as you describe it. Install a fuel filter and thoroughly clean the tank. I'd pull the plugs on a flooded engine to dry it out, and while at it--you can take a compression check. As others have suggested, recheck your firing order, and make sure you are on tdc(by the timing mark), both intake and exhaust valves closed on #1, and that the rotor is pointed at the #1 high tension lead coming from the distrbutor cap.

buddymander
05-01-2006, 10:13 AM
First; remove all the spark plugs. Second; ground the distributor end of the coil wire. Third; crank the engine for a few seconds. Fourth; use a compression tester or stick your finger in each plug hole. If you can hold against the pressure; it's low. If there's almost no pressure; probably valve problems. Mark the TDC line on the harmonic balancer and crank it with your finger in number one plug hole to make sure you've got it on number one; compression. Use a screwdriver to feel the top of the piston and move the crank by hand to get it the closest to TDC. Now remove the distributor cap and see if the rotor is pointing to number one. Then check the plug wire firing order. But even after all that, it sounds like you might have a vacuum leak, so check all your hoses and carb screws and manifold bolts. Check the vacuum advance for a cracked diaphram by sucking on the line and making sure it moves. Make sure you have a spark that can jump at least 1/4 inch.If not, your points are probably fried. On a car of this vintage, the points are always the prime suspect. Put in a set of bosch platinum tip spark plugs, too. Of course, most of these steps are under the assumption that your engine passed the compression test phase. My first car was a 1960 Lark with a 61 OHV six. My second car was a 55 with that same engine transplanted into it.

hank63
05-01-2006, 11:44 AM
Re the suggestion of putting your ear close to the carb. Be careful here, petrol splurting out and hitting your ear drum may affect your sense of balance "big-time". My uncle took a "hit" years ago and walked sideways at 45, head first, straight into a brick wall.
/H

chrysleritis
05-01-2006, 03:06 PM
Yup, that did it for me. Wing nut removal from venturi did the trick. Took off the carb, and there was a good puddle of gas inside the manifold. Took out the plugs, dried them off, cranked the engine a revolution with the ignition off to blow it out. Cleaned carb out a bit. Put it back together, and it started at the first revolution. Just great. Needs the idle adjusted a bit, and maybe tweak the timing. And it's got a small exhaust leak under the hood, probably at the flange at the manifold. That's a cheap fix.
Now I need to put the tires on it...

Check your fuel filter and carb for crud, and dry out the flooded condition before trying again.