Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

All Models and Years
Post Reply
Plazticpaddy
Posts: 29
Joined: Sat Jun 29, 2013 10:45 am

Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by Plazticpaddy »

Hey all -

Before I begin troubleshooting (I’m a pretty lousy mechanic but I’ve loved this car for 7 years), here is my dilemma.

My ‘64 Monza PG ran beautifully in Virginia with no issues over many years - basically changed the oil and filter when needed. I moved to Utah in February and shipped my car - it arrived FILTHY and now run like garbage and leaks (never did that before).

My issue is that it will start OK when cold and idle a little high, but when I shift into gear it bogs down. I can take it around the block but it sounds like a carb or timing issue. Interesting enough - if it bogs down and dies while warm, I can’t get it started again.

I just ordered a carb sync tool and I was going to try that first but a friend mentioned to me about hat the altitude is the problem and I need to re-jet my carbs. I’m at almost 5k in elevation.

Any thoughts before I try and troubleshoot this? Oh, and yeah I’m a lousy mechanic so kindergarten level language is appreciated!

Thanks!

Sean

User avatar
bbodie52
Corvair of the Month
Corvair of the Month
Posts: 9499
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:33 pm
Location: Lake Chatuge Hayesville, NC
Contact:

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by bbodie52 »

Image
'64 Corvair Monza Vert. Jul 04, 2013

:helpsos:

I attempted to go through your previous posts to try to gather some history on your Corvair. There was an apparent oil leak many years ago that may have been related to a transmission leak. Was this corrected? Then there appeared to be some electrical problems that drag on for some time and then were apparently resolved. The car was apparently transported to Utah and ended up very dirty. It has been about six years since your previous posts. Has the car been running during that period, or was it in storage?

At the bottom of this post I have included some videos and basic troubleshooting information. The two videos will give you some idea of what it takes to perform a basic evaluation of a Corvair when performing a tuneup. A compression test of all cylinders will give you some idea of the mechanical condition of the engine. An evaluation of the ignition system will include inspection and confirmation of the functional condition of the ignition points and condenser, spark plug wires, and spark plugs to ensure that they are all functional and correctly set. An evaluation of the fuel system will confirm a functional fuel pump and the presence of gasoline in the carburetor float bowls. Along the way a thorough inspection should be made to check for vacuum leaks at any of the vacuum connection points. A fuel pump test will confirm that the pump is delivering acceptable fuel volume and pressure to the carburetors.

If that oil leak was never corrected, I would recommend checking the vacuum modulator on the side of the transmission to determine if there is oil coming from the modulator or the vacuum hose. If transmission fluid appears to be inside the rover vacuum hose, vacuum modulator is probably bad and needs to be replaced.

You should also confirm that there's fresh fuel in the gas tank and that you are not trying to start an engine with stale gasoline. You may also have a problem with one or both carburetors having clogged fuel passages. It is possible that your engine is idling on only one carburetor, and that the other carburetor is effectively dead and providing only air with no gasoline mixed with the air. Your description would seem to indicate that the engine idles when the choke mechanism is engaged, causing a fast idle. But when the engine has warmed up, the chokes are disengaged, and what is left may be only an engine that is idling with one operational carburetor. This condition can sometimes be identified by removing the air cleaner and covering the inlet of one carburetor, and then the other. Blocking the air intake of a carburetor on one side should cause a significant change and probably stalling of the engine. The same should occur when blocking the carburetor on the other side. If the response to this test is uneven, you may have an indication of a faulty carburetor. If the car has been sitting for a long time, it may be necessary to remove both carburetors and disassemble them, so that the metal components and carburetor body can be soaked in a chemical carburetor cleaner to flush out any deposits or dirt that may have accumulated in the internal passages.

As the video indicates, it is important when starting with an unknown engine condition to properly confirm cylinder compression, a properly operating ignition system, and a fully functional fuel system. At the end of the troubleshooting and correction of any faults that are discovered, you will most likely have a perfectly drivable Corvair. Other aspects of the car should also be confirmed, including the brake system (flush and refill the master cylinder and brake lines with fresh brake fluid), inspect the tires for excessive age and replace aging or dry rotted tires, inspect all of the lights, horn, windshield wipers, etc. for proper operation and condition. You should treat this car as an unknown if it has been sitting in storage for a long time.

You may require assistance to effectively troubleshoot, repair, and tune your Corvair. There is one Corvair owners club that is located about 30 miles north of Salt Lake City. You may wish to consider contacting them and possibly joining the club to establish contact with local and knowledgeable Corvair owners in your area. You can also continue to establish a dialogue here on the Corvair Forum as you work through the troubleshooting and fault isolation process to get your Corvair running properly. If you can find some local Corvair owners who are willing to assist you the process may move forward more quickly. Along the way you will likely learn a great deal about your Corvair and how to effectively tune, troubleshoot, and maintain your aging classic Corvair. If members of the Corvair Forum are to be able to help you in this process, we need to know what kind of tools you have available, whether or not you have a place to work on your Corvair, and if any local assistance can be expected. You will be our eyes and ears and hands as we try to assist you. I would suggest watching the two videos towards the bottom of this post to get a feel for the tuneup sequence that should be employed when inspecting and tuning your car.

Image :link: http://www.corvair.org/chapters/chapter840/
Image
Welcome to the Bonneville Corvair Club website!

This site has information regarding upcoming club activities and tech sessions. Please consider attending an activity. You won't find a better bunch of Corvair nuts in Utah.

Corvairs are fun cars to own and a blast to drive. They are not a mystery to repair or restore as parts are readily available from numerous mail-order and web sources. If you need help getting your ol' Corvair runnin' please contact one of the Club officers for help. You'll find that Corvair owners are always willing to lend a hand and share their Corvair "know-how" with others.

We dedicate this website to the enjoyment of our favorite car, the Chevrolet Corvair! We hope our enthusiasm is contagious and you too are bitten by the Corvair bug.
===================================================================================
Plazticpaddy » Sat Jul 20, 2013 3:12 pm

...doing an oil change today (it's actually not 100 degrees!), and while the car was jacked up, I decided to poke around. I noticed this line running to the engine and it was exceptionally oily. My car leaks a little oil but nowhere near this line. If the pic sucks, let me know. This is a 64 Monza Vert.

Thanks!

Image
Image
Plazticpaddy » Sun Nov 24, 2013 5:06 pm

Well, I've been lucky as a new Corvair owner (May 2013), haven't had a single issue with car until yesterday.

I'll preface this by saying I'm not very mechanically inclined so this is all new (and challenging) for me...

Anyhow - late last week the car was idling a little high and rough - nothing too bad, but a little concerning. Yesterday, tried to start it up and it wouldn't turn over - it would make the effort but wouldn't start. Came close after several tries, but once it kicked in, it immediately died.

Today I poked around and checked connections and tried to use some starter fluid to get it going, but still same issue. Took the opportunity to opo in new battery but that only gave me stronger "non-start"

Where do I begin to troubleshoot??? :sad5:

Thanks!!

Sean
bbodie52 » Sun Dec 01, 2013 4:16 pm

:dontknow: Sooooo...

How is your Corvair running now??? :dontknow:
Plazticpaddy » Sun Dec 01, 2013 4:21 pm

:angry: It's not!! Same problem...
Plazticpaddy » Fri Mar 07, 2014 6:47 am

...started up the '64 today and let it warm up for a few mins (20 outside this morning). As I prepared to back out of driveway I put lights on, then car died. No power whatsoever -- no interior light, etc. Gen light was dim when I hit the lights, but now I'm confused? Battery is new... Some fuse that can cause total electrical loss??? :sad5:
Plazticpaddy » Tue Mar 11, 2014 7:32 pm

Problem solved - :guitar:

Culprit WAS the 10 gauge wire... Seems when I spliced and joined them, I did a crappy job and there wasn't enough juice coming through. Thanks everybody - and special thanks to the Corvair Ranch for looking at it and taking 10 mins to solve a problem it took me all weekend to fix. :not worthy:
Plazticpaddy » Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:21 pm

Hey all -

Before I begin troubleshooting (I’m a pretty lousy mechanic but I’ve loved this car for 7 years), here is my dilemma.

My ‘64 Monza PG ran beautifully in Virginia with no issues over many years - basically changed the oil and filter when needed. I moved to Utah in February and shipped my car - it arrived FILTHY and now run like garbage and leaks (never did that before).

My issue is that it will start OK when cold and idle a little high, but when I shift into gear it bogs down. I can take it around the block but it sounds like a carb or timing issue. Interesting enough - if it bogs down and dies while warm, I can’t get it started again.

I just ordered a carb sync tool and I was going to try that first but a friend mentioned to me about hat the altitude is the problem and I need to re-jet my carbs. I’m at almost 5k in elevation.

Any thoughts before I try and troubleshoot this? Oh, and yeah I’m a lousy mechanic so kindergarten level language is appreciated!

Thanks!

Sean
bbodie52 wrote:There is no simple, or compressed method to tune and troubleshoot a Corvair engine. A certain amount of knowledge or understanding is essential for the person doing the tuneup to interpret the results and then to be able to make logical adjustments accordingly. I would encourage you to do your homework, ask questions for clarification when needed. and follow the guidance below and in the shop manual to ultimately get the desired results with your Corvair.
bbodie52 wrote:Here is a fair amount of tune-up info, but if you can work your way through it the explanations may help with your understanding of how the various subsystems interact with each other, and why the proper sequence should be followed so you don't end up adjusting one area improperly to compensate for another area that isn't functioning properly.

:think: The dwell tachometer and timing light are the most common items thought of when working with an older engine in a classic car. As previously mentioned, however, there are ways to work around the lack of these tools. Adjusting the ignition points gap with a flat feeler gauge is a substitute for having a dwell tachometer. Setting the dwell with an electronic instrument is more accurate, however. The tachometer portion is needed to measure idle speeds and possibly to perform other tests where engine speed measurement is needed. It is possible to static-time your ignition system with a strip of paper placed between the ignition points. The engine timing mark can be manually positioned to the desired setting on the crankshaft pulley, and the distributor can be slowly rotated until the points just start to open and release the strip of paper. The distributor is then tightened and the mechanic has established an initial static timing setting. Of course, having a timing light makes things much easier, improves accuracy, and permits visual confirmation that the centrifugal advance is functioning. A vacuum gauge can be used for carburetor synchronization and other carburetor tests, and most vacuum gauges also double as a pressure gauge for measuring fuel pump output pressure. A UniSyn gauge, as shown below, measures airflow through each carburetor throat, and is an accurate way for synchronizing multiple carburetors at idle speeds and at partial throttle. A multimeter is a useful tool for troubleshooting and diagnosing electrical and charging system problems.

Many ignition systems in Corvairs have been upgraded by fitting an electronic ignition system to the distributor. These electronic ignition systems eliminate ignition points and condenser, which makes engine tuning somewhat easier and eliminates the need to periodically replace worn ignition points. The breakerless ignition system utilizes an optical or magnetic trigger to control the ignition coil. The system eliminates the need for a dwell meter or flat feeler gauge for ignition points adjustments. (A wire-type feeler gauge is needed for adjusting spark plug gaps). The tachometer portion of a dwell-tachometer, however, is still useful.

:think: Learning to work with the two Rochester primary carburetors on the Corvair really isn't all that difficult. But you should take the time to review the shop manuals and other attached manuals to get a better feel for what you are trying to accomplish. It is important to perform tuning steps in the right sequence, as outlined in the shop manuals and in the video below. Many of the tuning steps can impact the results found in other steps. There is a logical progression in tuning a Corvair engine, and skipping around or tuning components in a random order can only serve to confuse the outcome. The Delco Rochester service manual that I have attached is a good supplement to the Corvair shop manual. About half of the manual is dedicated to explaining the various subsystems and components of the Rochester HV carburetor. To some extent these carburetors perform as you would expect a computer-controlled fuel injection system and ignition system to operate — but they were designed at a time when computer-controlled systems that were designed to respond to sensor input throughout the car would only have been a dream. The various carburetor and ignition subsystems respond to engine temperature, engine speed, airflow and vacuum changes, etc. much like a modern engine — but without all of the sophisticated electronics and sensors. Engineers were attempting to accomplish the things we do now, but with much less sophistication — but still making changes as engine speed, throttle position, engine vacuum, and fluid and air flow characteristics varied. If you take the time to read through the Delco Rochester manual, you might come to understand how the choke system functions, what an accelerator pump does and why it exists, and how the distributor is designed to adjust timing at low engine speeds and at higher engine speeds using both a vacuum advance and a centrifugal advance to provide the correct timing at various engine speeds and load settings. A good understanding of how these systems work and what they are supposed to do can be a great help when tuning and troubleshooting your engine.

The links, videos, and attachments below should help you to understand how to work with a dual carburetor engine. Try not to be intimidated by two physically separated carburetors. They really function very much like a single two-barrel carburetor, but are physically separated from each other out of necessity due to the layout of the flat air cooled engine with cylinders opposed to each other. The Corvair engine layout is in many ways similar to many motorcycle engine configurations. It usually takes an experienced automobile mechanic a little adjustment time to get used to the way things are done on a motorcycle. The aluminum, air cooled flat six Corvair engine often is seen as a challenge to an automobile mechanic, who is not used to the "strange configuration" found in a Corvair.

:link: viewtopic.php?f=55&t=13170&p=90875#p90875


The entire shop manual and many other Corvair technical references can be downloaded at no cost using the following link...

Common and Useful Corvair Websites
:link: viewtopic.php?f=225&t=6007

Watching the video presentations below helps to provide insight and understanding about proper sequencing of the tuneup steps and procedures. Skipping around can insert obstacles and problems with getting the engine properly tuned.

The portion of the first video segment toward the end (Part 1, 5:10) and at the beginning of the second segment discusses throttle linkage adjustments and carburetor synchronization.
Tuning the Corvair Engine — Part 1



Tuning The Corvair Engine — Part 2

Brad Bodie
Lake Chatuge, North Carolina
Image 1966 Corvair Corsa Convertible

User avatar
SeamusNZ
Posts: 88
Joined: Fri Sep 16, 2016 3:11 pm

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by SeamusNZ »

When I was attempting to diagnose the poor running of my engine, I was surprised how important the carb linkage settings are with respect to how your engine performs. It is possible that your linkage was inadvertently altered during no the transit to your new home.

I would start there, as it will effect your starting, idling, post idle and general performance.

Cheers SeamusNZ


Sent from my iPhone using Corvair Forum mobile app

User avatar
terribleted
Posts: 3555
Joined: Sun Apr 18, 2010 2:36 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA
Contact:

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by terribleted »

Was the car transported flat or on a transport trailer ramp with the rear end down? If transported on a ramp (and even if not) check the oil for fuel smell and overfull. I had one that got here to Atlanta from Texas that had similar issues. The crank case was full of fuel that gravity fed from the fuel tank back thru the carbs and into the crankcase. There was plenty of leaking as the dilute fuel/oil mix could get thru seals that oil alone would not. not to mention cylinders being partially full as well as the exhaust being partially full of fuel. Plugs were somewhat fouled as well causing poor running. Might no be your issue but figured I would share in case. Once the oil and plugs were changed and the car operated with a fire extinguisher close at hand to evaporate the fuel from the exhaust it went back to normal operation, altho the exhaust was still a bit smelly and was that way for a while as the oil/fuel remnants burned off.
Corvair guy since 1982. I have personally restored at least 20 Vairs, many of them restored ground up.
Currently working full time repairing Corvairs and restoring old cars.
https://www.facebook.com/tedsautorestoration/

Located in Snellville, Georgia

joelsplace
Posts: 944
Joined: Wed Oct 13, 2010 12:51 pm
Location: Northlake, TX

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by joelsplace »

Bogging and no hot restart means bad accelerator pumps, stopped up carburetors, air leak or all of the above.
114 Corvairs, 5 Ultravans and counting
Northlake, TX

JDGriggs
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jul 29, 2020 11:55 pm

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by JDGriggs »

I had a *very* similar problem just recently! Transported a '66 Monza from Seattle, WA area to SLC (welcome to SLC by the way!). In Seattle the car ran great at a nice idle, when I got to Utah and took it off the dolly, it started with a high idle, I got it on the interstate, and it died after ~15mi. Towed it off the interstate, tinkered with it, started back up with a high idle, and drove fine until coming to a stop. When stopped the car died every time. I'm wondering if it had something to do with altitude also, but I think it also may have died due to vapor lock (?)

Another similarity was that there was a small oil leak under the car after towing it... strange.

Anyhow, yesterday I checked it out thoroughly and couldn't find anything obvious like a vacuum issue, so I adjusted the idle down. It idled for about 30min and shifted into and out of gear fine. Haven't taken it out for a full test drive yet though... it's stinking hot right now... and without AC, that's no bueno.
Attachments
Ready to tow
Ready to tow
'66 Monza
'66 Monza
JD
'66 Corvair 500
'66 Corvair Monza

"[...] we have to go on record and say that the Corvair is in our opinion [...] the most beautiful car to appear in this country since before World War II." - Car and Driver (October 1964 issue)

erco
Posts: 165
Joined: Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:45 pm

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by erco »

Great video on Corvair Engine tuning. Best misquote at 0:37 is "You and I know there are just as many different ways to tune up a Corvair engine as there are holes in a head gasket."

Corvair's ring-shaped head gaskets have exactly one hole.

User avatar
bbodie52
Corvair of the Month
Corvair of the Month
Posts: 9499
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2012 12:33 pm
Location: Lake Chatuge Hayesville, NC
Contact:

Re: Shipped car to Utah from Virginia and now runs terrible

Post by bbodie52 »

:goodpost:

Maybe that is what they meant. There is only ONE correct way to tune the Corvair engine!

And performing each of the steps in the correct sequence forms a great path to success! Skipping steps, ignoring or misinterpreting substandard results, making improper adjustments to compensate or cover-up a problem, or performing the steps out of sequence can create new problems that ultimately leads to a poorly running engine. :puke:

For example, failing to properly synchronize the two primary carburetor idle speed adjustments, so that the idle speed is set way up on one side to increase the idle to an acceptable RPM using only three cylinders... to compensate for a dead, malfunctioning idle system in a faulty carburetor. The outcome masks what is actually going on and appears to be OK, but the car will tend to stall at idle speeds because three non-functioning cylinders are being dragged to the proper idle speed by the opposing three cylinders that are fed by a functioning carburetor. Improperly adjusting carburetors and/or timing to cover up a vacuum leak can lead to a detonating, lean-running engine that develops burned valves, damaged pistons, etc.

That is why the shop manual tuning procedure, or the tuning process depicted in this early training video are valuable in learning to properly tune a Corvair engine.
:thewave: :whoa: :wrench: :guitar: ::-):
Brad Bodie
Lake Chatuge, North Carolina
Image 1966 Corvair Corsa Convertible

Post Reply

Return to “Ask your Mechanical Questions here”