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Poor starting TR3a Discuss.


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#1 stuart

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 02:54 PM

Right here we go chaps a topic for discussion received from one of our members on the Tech email system

Poor starting on an early`ish 3a

 
"I hope you are able to give me some technical advice on a problem with my car - a
1958 TR3A comm.no. TS29455.  After having set up the car with 2 colourtunes and a carb balancer and the car then running perfectly, after putting the car in the garage, the following day it will not start.  Eventually after numerous times removing the spark plugs, cleaning then and checking and even heating them with a blowtorch, the car starts.  I then double-check everything, colourtunes, etc., and the car seems to be running perfectly, I then put the car back in the garage and then next day the whole scenario happens again!
 
The car has reconditioned carbs, new petrol pump, new distributor, spark plugs, leads, etc..
 
I have taken it to 2 garages specialising in classic cars, one of which was recommended by a club member, all to no avail.  I really hope you can help with this".
 
 
Stuart.

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#2 Alec Pringle

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 03:00 PM

New distributor of what variety ?

 

Condenser springs to mind as a possible culprit ?

 

Fuel supply - as in disappearing somewhere overnight, and perhaps even air locking ?

 

Cheers

 

Alec


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#3 Don H.

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 03:00 PM

Old fuel?

 

Damp around distributor?

 

Vacuum leaks?


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Don Hiscock
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA

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#4 Jersey Royal

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 03:42 PM

Overfueling on choke, soaking the plugs, new plugs especially Ngk dont like being wet when new. Check the float level and put the new plugs in the oven for ten minutes or so.
Thats my opinion.

Guy
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#5 ntc

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 03:43 PM

Overfueling on choke, soaking the plugs, new plugs especially Ngk dont like being wet when new. Check the float level and put the new plugs in the oven for ten minutes or so.
Thats my opinion.

Guy

+1 it is flooding.


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Regards
Neil

#6 graeme

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 04:17 PM

Has the cylinder compressions been checked? Low compression will cause poor starting.

 

Possibly old fuel?

 

Graeme


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#7 Chilliman

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 04:38 PM

I'm definitely in agreement with excess fuel on initial start up -  most logical answer


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Regards

 

John


#8 Bobbie

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 06:20 PM

All of the above, + has coil been changed to eliminate any fault in that department?
Has a basic check for spark at the plugs been checked when cold?

Regards Bob.
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Regards Bob,

#9 Peter Cobbold

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 06:44 PM

The engine has to be cold to show up the fault. So....plugs fouling with rich cold start mixture? Try new plugs ( have never have much joy myself trying to clean old ones.)


Edited by Peter Cobbold, 10 April 2015 - 02:05 AM.

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#10 LGFromage

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 07:14 PM

Try a new set of plugs purchased from a reputable dealer. Plugs can vary in quality.

 

Tim


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#11 BlueTR3A-5EKT

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 07:18 PM

Coil polarity to match vehicle battery connection.

Over advanced ignition static timing.

 

 

Peter W


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#12 Richardtr3a

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Posted 09 April 2015 - 09:08 PM

I fitted a racing condenser from a mini race supplier and my starting was transformed. Well worth £32.00. It is mounted on the engine and there is a new earth lead from the coil mounting to the chassis.

 

My problem was hot starting.

 

Good luck.

Richard & H


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#13 RogerH

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 08:09 AM

The car runs OK when warm - so that should rule out most of the above.

 

Why do the plugs get  wet/foul up - are  they stopping it from starting or suffering because it hasn't started.

 

There was a post on  the TR6 forum the other day pointing out  exactly this problem. The battery was too small (not enough  adequate cranking amps) to start but was more than adequate when  running

Replace battery with more  CCA and bingo.

 

The cold starting process was  robbing the  battery of volts - possibly  not helped by other things - more  CCA keeps the battery volts where they  belong.

 

Roger


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#14 BrianC

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 08:45 AM

I think Roger has the answer.  I had similar problems during the winter and suspected previous occasional culprits of fuel starvation or flooding due to sticky needle valves (curable by tapping float chambers with a spanner or screwdriver head) .  However, using a jump pack, the car started perfectly and the battery alone was enough to restart it once warmed up a little. The real problem was simply that the elderly battery, although still good, was just not enough to turn a cold engine and fire it up.  A new battery resolved the problem, even in freezing conditions.   


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Brian Chidwick
Current TRs:
1960 TR3A [704FTT] - Conifer

1958 TR3A [1323DT] - Powder Blue (currently reduced to CKD form - not much left now)
Previous TRs:
1965 TR4A IRS/Surrey [MEL393F] - Black (wife's former pride and joy)

1965 TR4A [FGC307C] - Conifer
Standard/Triumph owner since 1968
TR owner and TR Register member since 1972 (Lea Valley Group)
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#15 Lebro

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 11:53 AM

I agree to a point, but this is a 3A, not a PI job, so there is no fuel pump to worry about.

Many years ago I had a Dove '4 which used to crank over incredibly slowly in the winter - but it always started.

A good battery will certainly help, but there may be something else going on as well.

 

Bob.


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#16 Don H.

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 12:28 PM

I'd have never guessed a battery that was good enough to turn over the engine wouldn't have enough juice to power the primary on the coil.
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Don Hiscock
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA

1962 TR3B TSF202L                                                                                    1968 TR250 CD7907L
1981                                         2013->                                                          My first car, 1978-1981 (broken for parts)
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#17 trevor

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 01:11 PM

I have had this problem with my 4 and after fitting fuel filter realised that it was always empty when left for a while , three or four strokes of the fuel pump lever and away she goes .
Had the same problem on my Saab 96 v4 and fitting a non return valve was recommended on there forum and that is the route I' m planning to go with the 4.
Cheers, and good luck,
Trevor
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#18 BrianC

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 02:45 PM

I'd have never guessed a battery that was good enough to turn over the engine wouldn't have enough juice to power the primary on the coil.

I'm usually reluctant to blame this sort of problem on what appears to be a good battery, but it's by no means the first time I've cured starting problems by fitting a new battery after trying everything else.  Have done the same over the years and on two modern, family cars in the last 6 months.  I have a small stock now of batteries suitable for test purposes or powering 12v tools in garage, workshop, etc., as I can't bear to dump them whilst they still have life in them, but no way will they go back in their respective cars.


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Brian Chidwick
Current TRs:
1960 TR3A [704FTT] - Conifer

1958 TR3A [1323DT] - Powder Blue (currently reduced to CKD form - not much left now)
Previous TRs:
1965 TR4A IRS/Surrey [MEL393F] - Black (wife's former pride and joy)

1965 TR4A [FGC307C] - Conifer
Standard/Triumph owner since 1968
TR owner and TR Register member since 1972 (Lea Valley Group)
Member of
Sporting Bears Motor Club - Driving for Charity

"Life is too short to remain unnoticed" - Salvador Dali
"I'll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours" - Bob Dylan
"Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans" - John Lennon

[http://www.facebook.com/brian.chidwick]

#19 Don H.

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Posted 10 April 2015 - 03:08 PM

Brian, I'm sure you, like many of us of our generation, have popped the clutch on cars with batteries too weak to crank the engine in order to get them running. I've done it hundreds of times over the years. It takes almost nothing in the way of a battery for an old car to run.

Modern cars are a different kettle of fish indeed, with highly integrated, voltage-sensitive circuits throughout the vehicle. They're a lot fussier.
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Don Hiscock
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA

1962 TR3B TSF202L                                                                                    1968 TR250 CD7907L
1981                                         2013->                                                          My first car, 1978-1981 (broken for parts)
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#20 acaie

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Posted 11 April 2015 - 02:36 PM

So find a friend with a well charged battery and a set of jump leads, and that will tell you whether more oomph in your battery will cure the problem.

 

Good luck

Al


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