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Odd problem but it got me home!

steveg

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Driving home from California Healey Week from Palm Springs area to Altadena, my car was running badly with backfiring and feeling like it took a lot of throttle to get anywhere. On removal of the piston, the needle dropped out into the carb:
attachment.php

Evidently the rear carb needle was sitting in place in the jet while the piston was going up and down. Made it home by keeping to the right lane with as little throttle as possible.

Amazingly the car made it home.
 

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RAC68

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Hi Steve,

Back in the winter of 1972, I drove from a town outside of Philadelphia to NE Pennsylvania, over to NYC, and back to the Philadelphia area. I had difficulty starting the Healey as we had a snow storm the night before but eventually got it going. As I remember, the car would have difficulty getting started from a stop and I needed to ride the clutch to get moving. However, once on the PA Turnpike, I had no difficulty cruising at 65 MPH or higher. Since I had not stopped for fuel along the way, once leaving NYC I filled the tank and was surprised to state I was getting around 60 MPG.

Returning to PA, I pulled the car into my neighborhood British car dealer to identify the reason for the difficulty I was having getting the car moving from a dead stop. Although during some occasions the car would start off normally, it turned out that the needle had loosened from the piston and vibration would shake and cause it to drop, blocking off fuel to that carburetor and the 3 cylinders it served. However, on occasion, the piston would drop catch the pin sufficiently to withdraw it and allow normal operation before vibrating loose and blocking fuel again.

Although the fix was easy once the issue was identified, there were times during the fuel embargo that 60 MPG looked good and I considered finding a way to drop the needle on command.

All the best,
Ray (64BJ8P1)
 

HealeyRick

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Although the fix was easy once the issue was identified, there were times during the fuel embargo that 60 MPG looked good and I considered finding a way to drop the needle on command.

All the best,
Ray (64BJ8P1)

Remember Cadillac tried that with the variable V8-6-4 motor in 1981?
 

Keoke

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[h=2]Odd problem but it got me home![/h]
I suggest "U " do not use that mechanic any more----:highly_amused:
 
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I had this happen to me, but the needle didn't drop all the way out. Sometimes, it would stick in the piston and car would run fine; when it dropped, well, I had 3 cylinders.

The ends of the set screws that hold the needles in can get deformed with time/use/overtightening; I replaced mine.
 
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steveg

steveg

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I had this happen to me, but the needle didn't drop all the way out. Sometimes, it would stick in the piston and car would run fine; when it dropped, well, I had 3 cylinders.

The ends of the set screws that hold the needles in can get deformed with time/use/overtightening; I replaced mine.

It only dropped out when I pulled the piston out.
 

Keoke

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The unusually high temperatures and humidity in California this year are prolly responsible for this problem.:highly_amused:
 
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