Back on the Road Today: The Good and the Bad

Back on the Road Today: The Good and the Bad

Joined: August 27th, 2007, 4:07 am

May 3rd, 2008, 7:00 am #1

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
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htf
Joined: May 5th, 2001, 4:29 pm

May 3rd, 2008, 7:13 am #2

It either of the two.
Either your fuel isn't coming in, restricted or slow on supply, and you can feel it when you demand more power, or something blocks the air from flowing in.
I'd start with the fuel. Are the lines in good shape? Fuel pump? Are the filters clean?
There is a remote chance that a fuel line, below the pump, has a tiny leak, or just a hair of a crack, and when you demand more fuel it sucks air (which is not too powerful).



HaXD
Herzel, in Israel

WhiteX
The late Green '85 X1/9
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Joined: October 16th, 2007, 2:36 pm

May 3rd, 2008, 11:54 am #3

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
When I had that problem ('75 X), the vacuum line to the distributor was leaking.
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Frank Ignasiak
Frank Ignasiak

May 3rd, 2008, 2:14 pm #4

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
NT
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Eric Hamilton (Durham NC)
Eric Hamilton (Durham NC)

May 3rd, 2008, 2:17 pm #5

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
That was what caused my similar-sounding problem
with a car that stood for a while. Gassing up and
taking it out for a spin sloshes the fuel in the
fuel tank enough to stir up stuff that never bothered
you when the car was standing.
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Bob Brown
Bob Brown

May 3rd, 2008, 2:35 pm #6

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
While your plugs are out, make sure you have basic compression on each cylinder and eliminate the possibility of a stuck ring or blown head gasket.
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Joined: October 15th, 2007, 3:50 am

May 3rd, 2008, 2:54 pm #7

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
Was there any really old gasoline in the tank before this X got put back into service? It is possible that old gasoline turned into crud, then mixed with new gasoline and is now plugging up the carb and fuel system.

Check for cracked hoses that could be causing everything from coolant to vacuum leaks.

Check for loose hardware every where on intake side.
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Joined: August 29th, 2005, 4:22 am

May 3rd, 2008, 3:25 pm #8

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
When resurrecting a vehicle, depend on replacing the fuel filter several times in a short time span, especially a carbed model.

As an example, my first Fiat was a '72 850 Spider. This car sat for several years prior to my ownership. I changed the filters a few times, as they would fill with rusty sediment (dust). I eventually bought a case of the small plastic transparent filters and ran through nearly all of them before things cleared up.\

Every tank of fuel will loosen up crud that has dried and settled for a while. The other possibility is there is a clump of some unidentified floating object in the tank and it has adhered to the pickup, reducing flow. Sometimes these UFOs can adhere with high flow, then float away at idle.

Gregory Smith

'87 Bertone X1/9 Corsa
'88 VW Vanagon
Olympia, Washington, USA
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Joined: December 21st, 2004, 3:04 am

May 3rd, 2008, 5:12 pm #9

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
As others said... the old crap in the tank AND the friggin' fuel lines themselves.

The more ya play under the hood, the more you disturb the old fuel lines and they break apart inside, AFTER the fuel filter.

I run DUAL filters in parallel now, NOT in series, HORIZONTALLY, so the bottom one SHOULD clog first and allow me a second chance with the upper filter clear.  I use CHEAP see-thru plastic filters and check them regularly.  Now problems since.

BUT... most of my problems started when I used FI Cleaner in the tank... and I BELIEVE it helped to accelerate the clogging issue and the breakdown of the crappy old fuel lines.

It would be <STRONG>BEST</STRONG> to replace all the lines, install new filters,&nbsp;pull the carb and dip it in cleaner, buy a kit and BLOW it all out.&nbsp; A complete carb overhaul and its actually very simple.&nbsp; You can get away with pulling the four rods/tubes between the venturis, (KEEP THEM IN ORDER) and cleaning and blowing them out... and also blowing out the orifices and ports from which they came...&nbsp; But I'll also guarantee this too... It won't cure it and it'll stumble again at the MOST INOPPORTUNE time...

You don't wanna LEARN the way I did...

ALSO... the GRIN on your face will reappear each time you drive that car... hopefully its enough for you to dig into this and make the effort.

LASTLY... buy this car back from your kid... or burn it to the ground... it would be more humane...

HA!


My best,



Tony
Black Tooth and me... since 1983!
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Last edited by Black-Tooth on May 3rd, 2008, 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: August 27th, 2007, 4:07 am

May 3rd, 2008, 5:57 pm #10

I've been making slow progress getting my 76 X back in working order and finally got it to the point that I could put it on the road today. I bought the car in the late 80's, drove it for a couple years, then sold it to my dad, who let it pretty much rot in his driveway. My son bought it from him last year and we've been slowly bringing it back (OK, really mostly me since he didn't seem to pick up much of my mechanical interest).

I got it licensed a couple months ago and I've been starting it regularly and running it as I've been working on other projects. It has always run pretty well, especially considering how long it sat. So today, I finally got insurance on it and finished up putting in the new carpet and decided it was time to take it for a spin.

It's not that I'd forgotten that the X was fun to drive, I just didn't remember how much. I ran a few errands, mostly looking around for a new e-brake boot to use and had a blast. That was the good.

Now for the bad. Later in the afternoon when my kids got home from school, I took my daughter out for a spin. I got about 1/2 mile from home and the engine suddenly lost power. It didn't quit, but when it was under load it would run rough and bog down, then would come back when I put in the clutch and let off the gas. I limped home and popped the hood, but didn't see anything obvious that would have cause it. I put fresh fuel in earlier in the day so I don't think that's the issue.

Now I'm bummed, since it always ran well when I couldn't drive it, and now that I can, it's not running.

Help! Any ideas?

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
Thanks for all the helpful advice. I agree that this is likely a fuel or clogged carb issue. I had already replaced nearly all of the fuel lines a couple months ago, as well as one of the two fuel filters I have. I got a new filter, but will probably just go ahead and replace both. The vacuum line to the distributor looks good, but I'll check that further to make sure. If all else fails, a former co-worker used to be a mechanic at a local shop that specialized in european sports cars and he knows Italian cars. He was going to come help with a general tune-up anyway.

As far as my son goes, Tony, I had pretty much assumed once we got this back into shape and painted, I'd probably just go buy him a Honda or something to buy it back. At this point, he doesn't yet even drive a stick but that will soon change, as soon as I can get it on the road again.

Jeff
Tacoma, WA
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