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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: idaho springs, co
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Angry I don't like it

My 914, normally perfectly running 2.0 developed an issue today. I lost about 40% of my power on the way home tonight. I heard a little backfiring when I let off the gas. I made it home and when I got to the garage, I lifted the engine lid and pulled the #3 plug wire off the cap. There was no change in the idle, which was barely keeping the car running. Same with #4. They are getting spark, good strong blueish spark, but the cylinders aren't firing. Here is the motor:
2.0, 40idfs, Scat cam, 9.3to1 CR, new compufire point replacement (ran great before today), the motor is very strong, pulls hard through all gears.

It seems like I lost compression somehow. I can see the idle jets squirting gas at idle.

I am at a loss. Any help would be appreciated.

As always, thanks in advance.
Old 09-30-2002, 06:27 PM
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Mike Ginter
 
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Very first thing you should do is pull the idle jets and blow 'em out. They could still be partially plugged and not delivering full fuel flow. Used to have to do it on my carbed 1911 motor all the time. I'd pull the plugs and check them also. See if they're fouled and not firing at all. Check the carb and manifold nuts also. A vacuum leak can also cause those symptoms. BTDT.
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Old 09-30-2002, 06:43 PM
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Oh yeah...ahem cough ahem...check the idle jets

(inside joke...I just learned that myself, the hard way, a couple weeks ago)
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Chris C.
1973 914 "R" (914-6) | track toy
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Old 09-30-2002, 06:45 PM
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S'ok Chris
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Old 09-30-2002, 06:51 PM
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keep your eyes open for those little donut seals/gaskets. sometimes they're still in the hole,sometimes on the needle valve, sometimes lying on the engine tin. my dentist gave me an old little exam mirrior. handy.

kevin
Old 10-01-2002, 05:30 AM
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I am wrong or do the idle jets only supply fuel at idle and the mains supply the fuel at WOT.

I noticed the issue b/c I my car wouldn't go up a hill in 5th that it usually just breezes up.

I am going to pull the plugs tonight to see what I can see.
Old 10-01-2002, 05:44 AM
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Mike Ginter
 
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Idle jets supply fuel all the way up to 3k until the transition to mains takes place.

You're in Idaho Springs? We drove right by your house a couple of weeks ago. 5 914's converged on the Buffalo Bar.
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Old 10-01-2002, 06:38 AM
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Yep, that doubled the 914 population for the town. I have 3 of them and a lady down the street has one she bought new. If you guys come through again, I am always open for good car talk, and to toss back a beer or 3. let me know.

I have a feeling that the plugs are too full o crap to make spark. They are only 10k miles old, but stranger things have happened.

I am going to replace them tonight. I am guessing that I can test that theory by spraying some ether into the 3/4 side carb and if there is no massive change in rpm, that means no fire in the hole.

Ah, if it could only be that simple.......
Old 10-01-2002, 07:58 AM
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you might want to spray Gumout unless ether is a favorite of yours. the air-cooled (Hatz) diesels I trained on used to break rings quite often when someone got a bit enthusiastic with the ether.
Old 10-01-2002, 08:13 AM
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I'm working on another run for October 19th. We'll probably start north or womewhere in your vacinity and end up in Conifer at Mountain914's place for BBQ/beers or somethin. Watch this space...
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Old 10-01-2002, 08:25 AM
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According to Bruce Anderson, most Weber equipped p-cars spend virtually all of their time in normal driving on the idle circuit. Basically up to 1/3 throttle or so, those little easily-clogged jets are allyagot.

Does the car run any different/better under heavy throttle?
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1973 914 "R" (914-6) | track toy
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Old 10-01-2002, 08:43 AM
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unfortunately, no, it runs just as poorly at wide open. Hopefully, when I pull the plugs tonight, they will look awful and gunky. I never thought that I would hope for that.

Ginter - Who is mountain914? DaleT?
Old 10-01-2002, 02:07 PM
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well phooey...

The plugs are black, but they don't look awful.

What does a cam failure smell like?
Old 10-01-2002, 05:19 PM
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I don't know what it smells like (maybe teen spirit) but the oil has all these little metal particles in it.
Geoff
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Old 10-01-2002, 06:37 PM
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Stuck float

I think you have a stuck open fuel inlet valve operated by the float
Old 10-01-2002, 06:38 PM
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I suppose it is possible , But how would you have one side of the motor fail. the cam operates both sides???? (same lobe)
Look down the carb throat (with a mirror) to see if gas is splashing onto the butterfly. To rich is to rich idle or WOT. Engines tend to lose power (fall on face) over 11.5 to 1 air fuel.
Old 10-01-2002, 06:43 PM
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When you said you saw idle jets squirting at idle, did you mean acclerator pump nozzles? You can't really see idle jets doing anything. Did you remove clean and blow out the idle jets? Check the manifold and carb base plate nuts? Could be too much or too little fuel from the accelerator pumps also. But it ran fine before, so you need to look for something that could possibly have changed since.

If you have spark to those two cylinders (and there is no loud knocking noise internally), and they are both served by the same carb (and they are #3 & #4 correct), then you need to start studying a carb diagram. You could also swap carbs left/right and see if pulling the wires off #1 and #2 caused the same symptoms you have now.

As for mountain914:
<Colorado Fall Tour 2002>
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Last edited by gint; 10-01-2002 at 08:23 PM..
Old 10-01-2002, 08:20 PM
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Carb diagram is the key if you are certain that both cyls are affected equally and have eliminated the possibility of a vacuum leak. I've read that covering the bores with your hand at idle (so the engine sucks the crud out of the passages) is a decent trackside repair attempt prior to pulling jets and blowing things out or removing a carb and resetting the float level and checking the needle per Joe's suggestion. Webers are a breeze to work on if you haven't tried before. (once on the bench that is)
Do IDFs have that little fuel filter next to the fuel inlet fitting on the carb?
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Old 10-01-2002, 08:34 PM
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I had virtually the same symptoms in my 73 2.0 and with help from all these good people I found that it was the FI points. And correcting it was free, and it was easy (to which the fact that I could do it is testament).

If you think it could be this, here is the recipe:

Take a deep breath. Take out the distributor. The FI points are on a "side hatch" door toward the bottom of the unit. Carefully jiggle out the piece. The points will be pretty obvious. Take a really fine grit sandpaper or emery cloth and place between the contacts and each point and swipe it out a few times. Good idea to hit it with some electrical connection cleaner as well. Pop her back in, put in the distributor, re-adjust your timing, maybe hit the idle while you are at it......and BINGO, your back out there smirking at the Miata owners. And best of all the only cost to you is the bar of lava soap to clean your hands.
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Old 10-02-2002, 07:26 AM
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That would be a nice easy fix, but there are a couple of problems with it.

First, injector points tend to affect the cylinders diagonal to each other. This car is exhibiting symptoms on both cylinders on the same side. (Could be a problem with the inector grounds--except for the second point, see below.)

Second, injector trigger points are only used in cars running D-jet EFI. The car being discussed is running carbs.

--DD
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Old 10-02-2002, 07:31 AM
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