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Engine Stutter

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I have been experiencing some strange stuttering at lower RPM when accelerating or climbing. Runs well at 1500 RPM and above. Re did carb adjustments and timing. Points may be questionable but "cleaned up". I am awaiting new ones. I am due to go on Dave Nock's famous passes tour next month and don't want to be the one who slows us down. (Passes tour is up and down 5 California passes climbing to 10,000 feet thru Yosemite and others with the fall colors). Can an old condenser be the fault? I thought they either worked or they didn't. It will get replaced soon too. I cannot think of anything I have not checked. (BJ8) Suggestions please.
 
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NutmegCT

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Re: engine studder

First thing I'd do - replace both the coil and the condenser. It's easy and quick. Or maybe just borrow a pair - and see if the problem evaporates.

Tom M.
 

gonzo

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Re: engine studder

Clutch slippage perhaps? Try this slipping clutch test: With engine running push in clutch, select 2 or 3 gear, set handbrake, then engage clutch as if you were driving normally from stop. If engine stalls out, then clutch is functional. If it does not, then clutch will need attention. 5 Passes is such a wonderful run in a Healey. My personal favorite: Carson Pass and lookout.
 

vette

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Re: engine studder

Carbs too lean maybe.
 

Madflyer

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Re: engine studder

LT is 6000 feet your car will only get richer the less air as you go up. How old are spark plug wires? I will some time replace coil to cap wire and always carry one. How does it run in Reno? What is low RPM for you below 900 RPM If so 1000 RPM may be all it takes. If you do not drive a lot Add a can of SEA FOAM to your gas will improve in 10 miles. RBCC Madflyer ( Reno British Car Club )
 
OP
tahoe healey
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Re: engine studder

I've always run 600 to700 RPM at idle at 6500 ft. It speeds up at sea level to about 1000 but I usually don't adjust unless I am going to be in the flat lands for a couple of days. Spark plug wires are probably 12 years old. I drive all year round weather, snow and rain permitting. Carbs look good with color tunes (two of them in plugs 2 and 5). Inspection of the removed plugs looks equal with good coloring. Pulling the choke out a little doesn't seem to help. I keep the old coil in the boot and will try that and a fresh old coil soon. I am trying to do only one thing at a time so I can isolate the cause. I have not thought about the clutch as I've had no signs but will put it on the list of experiments. No offense but there is little for fun driving a Healey in Reno. (Long traffic lights and too many cars).
All your input is greatly appreciated.
 
OP
tahoe healey
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Timing is right on 15 degrees and the dashpots were filled when I re did the carbs as I raised the jets to the bridge.
I will take the air filter off and re do the balance and replace the needles with the originals tomorrow.
 
OP
tahoe healey
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New points, condenser and back to the original needles and it seems the stutter has disappeared. As a bonus the "farting" going down hill also seems to be diminished considerably. I got no Guinness beer but a half open bottle of Chardonnay will have to do.
 

NutmegCT

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New points, condenser and back to the original needles and it seems the stutter has disappeared. As a bonus the "farting" going down hill also seems to be diminished considerably. I got no Guinness beer but a half open bottle of Chardonnay will have to do.

:applause:

Congrats!
 

Madflyer

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Not offended I live in Fernley three lights there. Before retiring, work would take me to Lake Tahoe all months of the year. Visitor's! get my point. Madflyer PS could meet for coffee some day six feet and all that.
 

Madflyer

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We do take rides to LT and have club members at the Keys and at the lake side of Kingsbury grade. Since C 19 we have only gone ounce and did not visit. I also play golf at Kings beach some times with other members that live on the Cal. side. There are four members around the lake AH, TR, MG-C, and Jags. This is the time of year we do our Doctor appointments and next week is some. If you look up club web page you can see what going on in the British cars around Reno Lake Tahoe. www.Renoallbritish.org Madflyer
 

vette

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New points, condenser and back to the original needles and it seems the stutter has disappeared. As a bonus the "farting" going down hill also seems to be diminished considerably. .
Yea lean carbs will do that. Glad to see you got your needles and jets sorted out. I never have seen an SU carb that could work well with its jets screwed all the way up even with the bridge.
 
OP
tahoe healey
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The "special" ethanol needles that was to make the mixture richer were probably what made me move the jets up. I'm not too old to learn from my mistakes.
 

nevets

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Good that you sorted it out. Curious to know whether the problem was with the ignition components or the fuel mixture? I'm guessing ignition.
 
OP
tahoe healey
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My best guess is it was ignition. The needles only made the mixture richer and were installed many years ago at the recommendation of a well know British shop. The only change I experienced was a drop in MPG.
 

NutmegCT

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My best guess is it was ignition. The needles only made the mixture richer and were installed many years ago at the recommendation of a well know British shop. The only change I experienced was a drop in MPG.

I'm betting it was the coil and/or condenser. "The coil - it's always the coil."

Congrats on the victory!
Tom M.
 
OP
tahoe healey
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I did not change the coil but I carry the old one in the boot. It worked but Norman Nock suggested I replace it just cause it was 30+ years old. And that was many years ago.
 
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