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Re: fuel systems

Here's another life experience to go along with Dale's story:
A cousin moved out of town leaving me his Fiat Strada to sell for him.  A
friend of mine said he was interested and asked that I drive it over to his
house to see it.  Five miles into the 8 mile trip it died on me.  Trying to
restart it, I finally gave up.  Several hours later I went back and it
started so I quickly drove it home.   My friend gave me/the car the benefit
of the doubt and a few days later asked that I bring it over again.  Five
miles later it died and I coasted into the same parking lot from the first
episode.  It wouldn't start, I waited several hours and voila it started.
I quickly drove it home before it died again.  Next day, same thing.  At
this point it was bordering on comical between my friend and I.  I told my
cousin about this and he said just sell it for whatever I could get for it
(dump it) and he admitted it hadn't been running well lately.  Puzzled, I
decided to troubleshoot the systems.  Carburetor - Fine.  Fuel Lines -
Fine. Fuel Pump(electric) - Fine.  Wait a minute what is this?  Another
fuel pump( engine driven) only disconnected. How are these foreign cars put
together.  I called a foreign car mechanic and asked how many fuel pumps
the car had.  He said one, engine driven pump.  I called my cousin and
asked him what was up.  He told me that a number of months back the engine
driven fuel pump had died and he had installed an electric pump in place of
the original mounted to the engine block.  I purchased a new engine driven,
installed it and presto the car ran beautifully.  The problem, the electric
driven as installed provided a constant fuel flow from the time the key was
turned on and it had a fuel pressure several times greater than the engine
driven original. So, consistently at the 5 mile mark the carb became so
saturated it flooded out and killed the engine.  I told my cousin (the
Electrical Engineer) what a bonehead move he had made and how well it ran.
He thanked me for fixing it and said he wanted it back since it ran great

It's the change you don't anticipate a problem with that will bite you in
the tail feathers!!

Greg Otto

One of the reasons I selected the Velocity was for it's simplicity
especially in the fuel system design.

DAlexan424@aol.com on 05/29/98 08:05:24 AM

To:   bgins@ipass.net, reflector@awpi.com
cc:    (bcc: Greg Otto/CONTRACTOR/DALLAS/CYRIX)
Subject:  Re: fuel systems

In a message dated 98-05-29 06:17:54 EDT, you write:

<< Ever wonder how N81VA can fly for 1000+ hours without a fuel failure.
 Keep things simple, or you are asking for trouble (IMHO). >>

Well said Bob. It does seem like we sometimes get caught up with the
What is it about people that make them want to take a proven system and
it "better"? I'm in that subset of "improvers" as well!!! Ask me about a
Ducati that cost $18K to get ready for racing.

Reminds me of an elderly school teacher we had as a customer many years
She took great pride in the fact that she was self taught in many areas
including auto repair. She brought her Alfa-Romeo in for a diagnostic one
and the cause of her concern was low compression due to leaking valves. We
told her that the head needed to come off to have the valves ground. She
the car home and several days later reappeared in the shop with the head to
have the service work done.The vavles were ground and she was sent on her

About a week later we got a call from her stating that the engine wouldn't
start and that she had run out of ideas. The Alphalpha was towed to the
and we were horrified to find every valve bent. When asked if she had timed
the cams when she put the head back on, we got the "deer in the headlights"
look. Apparently, she had placed the head on the block with no
as to where the pistons should be, probably just as they were when she took
the head off. To compound the problem, the car rolled backwards in gear and
did the valves in.

For Christmas, we bought her a pair of woolie mittens so that she would
her hot little hands off the car.

Sometimes, I think that we could use a pair ourselves.

Dale Alexander