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commander starts hard

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  • commander starts hard

    I work on a '51 commander with a V8. No mater what I do, I can't seem to make it start properly, especially when it is hot. I believe it to be ignition as carborator has been rebuilt and adjusted numerous times. Car has been tuned up a couple of times by different people. Is this a common problem? Do I need a high output coil? Does anyone have any advice? Thanks!This one is killing me.

  • #2
    Check every ground you can find. Good grounds seem to be a critical point on 6 volt cars.

    Welcome to the forum. Someone here has the answer you're looking for, for sure. [8D]

    Matthew Burnette
    Hazlehurst, GA


    • #3
      Make sure that your battery cable to the starter is a higher amp wire than those sold for 12 volt systems. And the battery should be rated at about twice the amps as the engine's cubic inch displacement.

      '50 Champion, 1 family owner


      • #4
        It sounds as though it is turning over properly and not starting.
        Is this the case? If so, the next time it is hard to start, connect a temporary wire from the battery - to the ignition side of the coil and try it. Remember, this is pos. ground. so put it on small post.
        Just be ready to start it and connect wire. Remove when it starts, if it starts. This will tell you what to do.

        Tex E. Grier


        • #5
          I think the key here is when you say "especially when it is hot". I thing you are experiencing vaper lock. If you are using the stock fuel pump on the top of the engine, try putting in an electric fuel pump with a switch under the dash. When it is hard to start, flip the switch on, and after it starts, switch it off.


          • #6
            Also problems with "hot soak" starting could be related to too slow a cranking speed again possibly due to the wrong gauge battery cables as mentioned above or possibly a dragging starter. Carburator could be percolating the fuel in the carburator bowl in turn flooding the engine.
            Frank van Doorn
            Omaha, Ne.
            1962 GT Hawk 289 4 speed
            1941 Champion streetrod, R-2 Powered, GM 200-4R trans.
            1952 V-8 232 Commander State "Starliner" hardtop OD


            • #7
              Check cable gauge first. It's the easiest item to be incorrectly replaced.
              "All attempts to 'rise above the issue' are simply an excuse to avoid it profitably." --Dick Gregory

              Brad Johnson, SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
              Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
              sigpic'33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight, '53 Commander Starlight "Désirée"


              • #8
                Does it turn over at normal cranking speed and just not fire or does it turn over slowly?

                Dick Steinkamp
                Bellingham, WA


                • #9
                  One thing you might want to check is the fuel line to fuel pump. Mine used to do the same thing. Found trash in gas tank was plugging the fuel line coming out of tank. It would shut off. You could let it sit there several minutes, then it would crank back. Ran new fuel line and no more problems.


                  • #10
                    Try this before you drive your self crazy. Steal some heavy duty aluminum foil from your kitchen. Rip of a length as long as the fuel line from pump to carb. Then fold it like an accordian belows, then wrap that around the line. The foil with the folds will act like a heat sink and remove heat from the fuel line. It will prevent vapor lock. If that does not help, or get rid of the problem then go after the harder things to try.


                    • #11
                      Poor connections and undersized cables slow the cranking speed. Giant batteries can't help.
                      Measuring the voltge drop when cranking confirms connection quality and adequacy of cable size. Should be less than 0.5 volts for entire half circuit, + battery post to starter terminal or - post to starter housing.
                      Lower is better.



                      • #12
                        I've seen the tin foil trick too. I've also seen clothes pins attached to the fuel line to get rid of the heat.

                        I run a high output 6 volt Bosch coil on mine. Got it from M A Motorworks in Effingham, Illinois. You can order it from their website.

                        I also run a Group 1, 8-volt battery in mine. I keep it charged with a one-wire hookup Delco type alternator with an 8-volt internal regulator.