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Starting issues

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brandbtn
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Starting issues

Post by brandbtn » Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:33 pm

I have a 1949 17' deluxe runabout with a 131hp KBL 3 carb engine. It's a 6V system with a brand new electronic ignition and coil. Once the engine starts, I have no difficulty starting it the next day or even day after...at most maybe 3 or 4 days. But if I don't run the engine for 5 or more days, it can take 20 attempts using occasional starting fluid to get the engine to turn over. Does anyone know why this is?

Theurkauf
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Re: Starting issues

Post by Theurkauf » Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:58 pm

I suspect fuel has syphoned out of those 3 cards while sitting, and all that cranking is needed to fill them up. I have no experience with a tri-carb, but my humble model B (also 6 volt) will take serious cranking after sitting a week or 2, UNLESS I manually prime first. Then if fires up after 1 or sometime 2 tries.

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Captain Nemo
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Re: Starting issues

Post by Captain Nemo » Fri Jul 20, 2018 5:50 am

Manually priming should be needed after sitting for some time, especially those tri-carbs. I'm assuming you have a manual fuel pump which has a bail (lever) on it that you can move up and down to prime the carbs. Sometimes if the pump is resting on top of the lobe you will have to bump the engine over to get full movement of the bail. You will hear and feel when the carbs are fully primed after a number of flips on the bail. Some may recommend going to an electric fuel pump which would prime them with a turn of the key, but I prefer the manual pump.
Boats are to be made of wood, otherwise, God would have grown fiberglass trees.

jim g
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Re: Starting issues

Post by jim g » Fri Jul 20, 2018 6:31 am

With the 6 volt electronic ignition you also need to keep the battery fully charged by keeping a battery tender on it. I would also recommend using the Optima 6v battery. It gives you the cranking amps of a group 4 but will fit in the group 2 box.

Do you have the small or big distributor?

brandbtn
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Re: Starting issues

Post by brandbtn » Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:14 pm

Thanks for your replies...I don't know if my distributor is considered big or small but it is an Autolite IGW4149A.

cenger
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Re: Starting issues

Post by cenger » Fri Jul 20, 2018 8:32 pm

I’m with Jim G. I had a similar problem with a Chrysler Ace, I went to a larger 6volt battery and problem was resolved.
1935 Gar Wood 16-35
1929 Gar Wood 28-30

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mfine
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Re: Starting issues

Post by mfine » Sat Jul 21, 2018 5:39 am

This is the wonder of modern fuel which is more volatile and evaporates out of the carb bowls. Both ethanol fuel and the non-ethanol varieties.

If you were 12v, I would recommend an electric fuel pump, but on a 6v engine, you are going to want to manually prime. Keep in mind you have 3 carb bowls to fill.

A weak battery and the battery draining after a few days would be a separate issue and since you have enough juice for 20 starting attempts and it eventually fires and then will work for a few days, the symptoms point directly at dry carbs.

jim g
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Re: Starting issues

Post by jim g » Sun Jul 22, 2018 3:04 pm

The problem with the 6 volt pertronix is they need almost the full 6 volts to trigger them. A lot of times and most people don't notice is they will be spinning the engine over and it will fire off right when you release the starter button. This is because the ignitor suddenly got the voltage it need when the magnet was lined up with the ignitor.

You have the small distributor. The 6 volt kits for these almost never work right. I personally have never got one to work right in the 5 or 6 I have tried in customers boats. The 6 volt one for the big distributor works okay.

But as others have posted if your issues stem from not priming the carbs after sitting. Then that is probably the problem. If you are priming the carbs then your battery is probably weak enough that the ignitor is not triggering. Even though it sounds like the engine is spinning over at its normal speed.

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tkhersom
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Re: Starting issues

Post by tkhersom » Wed Aug 01, 2018 7:55 pm

After having a great deal of trouble with modern condensers I have converted a 6V MCL and two 12V WBR's to Pertronix ignition with GREAT success and am very pleased with the starting and running performance. That being said I think I have the larger distributors. If my memory serves me I think they are all IAY4109's (or something like that)

I always prime the MCL before trying to start it after it has been setting a while. Never thought about it with the WBR's but they seem to start up well regardless. I also have plenty of battery reserve with them.
Troy in ANE - President CCABC

1957 CC 21' Continental "Yorktown" (Mom's boat)
https://www.chris-craft.org/boats/22625/
1958 CC 38' Connie "American Beauty"
https://www.chris-craft.org/boats/22607/
1985 Formula 242LS "Gottago"
1991 Formula 36PC "Band Aids"

Life Is Too Short To Own An Ugly Boat

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tkhersom
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Re: Starting issues

Post by tkhersom » Sat Aug 04, 2018 5:19 pm

I was reminded today of another potential problem that can occur. (it happened with one of my WBR's today) :(

Sometimes, especially if you have had your carbs rebuilt and have rubber tipped float needle valves, when your carbs dry out your float needle valve can get stuck in the seat and not allow gas into the bowl. I use a rubber hammer to tap the carb and hopefully loosen the needle valve. Having dual carbs on the WBR I was able to get it started and did not realize that the other carb was still stuck until I tried to increase RPM's. I had to have Sandi drive while I went down and tapped on the carbs until all of a sudden the RPM's jumped and all was good again. :D
Troy in ANE - President CCABC

1957 CC 21' Continental "Yorktown" (Mom's boat)
https://www.chris-craft.org/boats/22625/
1958 CC 38' Connie "American Beauty"
https://www.chris-craft.org/boats/22607/
1985 Formula 242LS "Gottago"
1991 Formula 36PC "Band Aids"

Life Is Too Short To Own An Ugly Boat

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Bilge Rat
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Re: Starting issues

Post by Bilge Rat » Mon Aug 06, 2018 3:29 pm

That's a great tip on the sticking float needles. I am restoring a twin carb MCL and although I have previous twin carb experience with British sports cars, I think I will add a rubber mallet to my on-board tool kit.
1966 Lyman Cruisette 25 foot "Serenity Now!"
1953 Chris Craft Sportsman 22 foot "Summerwind"

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