• Hi Guest! Being a Paid Subscriber is NOT required to participate at BCF. However, if you enjoy BCF and find our forum a useful resource...
    Please consider supporting us by **Upgrading**
    (PS: Subscribers don't see this banner)

Spitfire Triumph Spitfire 1500 refuses to awake after 10 year hibernation


Freshman Member
Country flag
I am trying to help my son get a spitfire 1500 running after a 10 year hibernation but it refuses to play.
When we first got it we drained all fluids and fuel, replaced fuel lines/pump, rebuilt carbs (removed waxstats for alternate type), all new ignition components (plugs,points,condenser, coil,leads) and gapped the tappets. We also checked compression (155/155/155/125 psi, although number 4 did come upot 140 after oiling the bore so may be just stuck ring. We set static timing to 10 degrees before tdc at the point the plugs open for Cyl 1. For the inital carb. set-up the jets are 2 full turns below bridge level and the slow running screw is 1.5 turns after it begins to move the butterfly

It would fire but only run roughly for a short period at high revs on the choke and immediatley die upon opening the throttle. This was exactly the same as before we did all the work.

I assumed we had an inlet manifold leak since there seemed to be plenty of fuel at the carbs (albeit a large vapour lock in the in line fuel filter) so we replaced the manifold. No change.

Having now rechecked fuel flow (good to carbs but still vapour lock in filter), timing, plug lead order and swapped back to old coil it refuses point blank to play. After cranking on the starter for ~5 secs it will fire to disengage starter but not run on. Even a healthy dose of damp start would not elicit any response. Having re checked compression we seem to be down to 60 on cycl 4 but that may be due more to a low battery and slow cranking speed. The plugs seem wet/oily now upon checking but there seems to be a weak spark when held against the engine.

Any insights/ideas greatly appreciated because I am all out of ideas.

Many thanks



Senior Member
Country flag
What is showing you vapor lock in the fuel filter? Could be that the new condenser is bad. I would r&r at the entire ignition again, including check of primary wiring for possible leaks. Do the points open to the same gap on each lobe of the shaft?


Freshman Member
Country flag
Hi Bob
The clean plastic fuel filter I added just before the fuel pump is full of air although having taken the hose off the fuel line to the front carb it receives a strong flow of fuel with no air bubbles.
How do I check primary wiring for a leak?
Not sure if points open the same on each lube but I wouls imagine that may be a fine tuning point rather than a show stopper for the car to run?
Many thanks


Senior Member
Country flag
There is always air at the highest point in a cartridge fuel filter unless the inlet and outlet are perfectly vertical to each other. Examine the wires closely for continuity, and cracks or other signs of possible intermittent shorts. Replace them all prophylactically, including the one in the dist that powers the points. Small bends in dist shafts can cause non-concentric rotation of the lobes (wobble). The dist shaft is 2 pieces. The top one with the lobes spins a bit on the bottom one, held to it only by the advance springs. Loose fit between the shafts can also cause erratic point opening. The movement of the points plate while advancing moves the little cloth covered wire that goes from the end of the coil wire to the points. This could cause short or discontinuity. PS The little points wire in the dist may have conventional insulation. Don't remember.

Last edited:


Jedi Knight
Country flag
Question? how did it run 10 years ago. Look at a vacuum leak check all Vac lines and tighten all bolts at carb and Man.
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
T Spitfire 1979 Triumph Spitfire 1500 Triumph 3
T Spitfire 1979 Triumph Spitfire 1500 rear wheel alignment Triumph 4
A Spitfire TRIUMPH SPITFIRE MKIV 1500 Triumph 2
A Spitfire Triumph Spitfire 1500 Triumph 8
B Spitfire Sellng my 1979 Triumph Spitfire 1500 Triumph 1
Basil Spitfire Triumph Spitfire 1500 Triumph 2
D Wanted WTB: Late Triumph Spitfire Top Frame Triumph Classifieds 8
C Spitfire 1967 Triumph Spitfire Triumph 2
SteveTheBrewer Spitfire Triumph Spitfire Restoration Blog Triumph 22
F Spitfire Triumph Spitfire , what fuel to run Her on with no engine history? Triumph 11
S For Sale Triumph Spitfire Workshop Manual on CD/ROM - 1962 - 1978 Triumph Classifieds 0
D For Sale Custom 1972 Triumph Spitfire [Restoration Project] Triumph Classifieds 0
D For Sale For Sale: 1972 Triumph Spitfire [Restoration Project] Triumph Classifieds 0
N For Sale 1971 to 1980 Triumph Spitfire Bonnet Triumph Classifieds 0
N For Sale 1979 Triumph Spitfire Triumph Classifieds 2
C Wanted triumph spitfire mk2-3 drivers seat bucket Triumph Classifieds 0
M Hello again. I have a 1978 Triumph spitfire. Triumph 17
N For Sale Triumph Spitfire hardtop Triumph Classifieds 2
PAUL161 Spitfire 75 Triumph Spitfire on Craigslist Tulsa Triumph 1
N Wanted Triumph Spitfire mirroe plinth Triumph Classifieds 0
5 Spitfire Triumph Spitfire on Craigs list Triumph 0
K GT6 Triumph Spitfire Cylinder heads.... Triumph 2
spitfun Wanted:Triumph Spitfire race rear spring Racing 2
S Spitfire Triumph Spitfire 74 transmission bellhousing leak Triumph 6
S Spitfire Question on front Hub for a triumph Spitfire. Triumph 4
N Spitfire Triumph Spitfire Brake Response Triumph 13
L Spitfire 1965 Triumph Spitfire MK2 Triumph 4
R Spitfire Triumph Spitfire Frame and Rustproofing Triumph 11
JBann Spitfire Triumph Spitfire mk1 - Height restrictions? Triumph 24
C one very, very quick Triumph Spitfire Racing 9
N Spitfire triumph spitfire? rebodied? Triumph 6
roofman Spitfire Triumph Spitfire seat conversion Triumph 23
B Triumph Spitfire Revolutions Racing 0
Michael Oritt Post-War Other Triumph Herald/Spitfire steering rack Triumph 7
M Spitfire '69 vs '70 Triumph Spitfire rag top Triumph 1
1 Spitfire Triumph Spitfire SAH Lemans Bonnet Triumph 0
W Spitfire Triumph Spitfire market Triumph 9
O Stag Triumph V8 Triumph 5
tr6nitjulius General TR TRIUMPH Triumph 0
Guido36 BN1 with Triumph TR 4 engine Austin Healey 1
M Wanted TRIUMPH TR3A Hard Top Triumph Classifieds 14
luke44 For Sale Pair of Vintage Triumph radios Triumph Classifieds 3
AngliaGT Triumph,MG Spotted 0
tr6nitjulius General TR Sir John Black Drive Your TRIUMPH Day 2/10/22 Triumph 0
D Off Topic Remember to drive your Triumph Triumph 3
K For Sale Triumph TR3 Intake Manifold Triumph Classifieds 0
J TR2/3/3A Triumph age Triumph 7
S Stag 1973 Triumph Stag Triumph 2
3798j General TR An Amazing Triumph Collection Triumph 2
W TR2/3/3A Video Triumph Sighting Triumph 0

Similar threads