View Full Version : Cleaning a carburetor.

Loose rivets
29th Apr 2012, 05:10
One's duties are varied. Today, I've been trying to help get a pair of Chinese replica 4-wheeler things going for the grand-kids. They're not very old. The carbs were locked with sheer bolts and I got past that by cutting a slot right into the floatchamber castings and into the screw head.

As I suspected, the casting inside was probably coated with a lacquer - even Honda did that in the early days. But I was still surprised by the general gooeyness in there. Cleaning out of the smallest jet took the finest wire I could find, and some minutes of 'drilling.'

We all know not to leave fuel in a tank while laid up for a war, but a few months? Does it really alter, or is it all due to the manufacturer's helpful (not) coating? Worst still, could the coating also be in the tank?

Oh, BTW, after years of thinking general rusting of tools etc., came from the humidity, my son read that keeping chlorine for the pool in the garage, causes things to rust. I didn't know, and it's mind-boggling. It had profoundly affected the look of these almost new quad bikes, and even quite good tools, inside plastic boxes, inside closed plastic wall thingies, showed serious rust damage - getting right into the ratchet mechanisms in some cases. I'm not sure, but the look inside these carbs showed the brass jets coated with black. It's hard to believe it could be the vapor, but if it is, what the heck is it doing to our lungs? More importantly, to the children's lungs.

29th Apr 2012, 05:37
yep, so it giggles. Swimming pool chemicals and rust??? - Woodwork Forums (http://www.woodworkforums.com/f43/swimming-pool-chemicals-rust-86848/)
and even though our lungs do not rust... dunno. Never liked pools mainly because of chlorine (= can't swim for most of the year).

good spark
29th Apr 2012, 08:28
mr rivets
those chinese things you mention have a pair of bevel gears living where the rear sprocket would be ( if the engine was still in a honda 50 ) this gearbox has a plastic cover on top so to hide it away nicely, the prob is that in the instruction book you get with this junk doesnt tell you to put oil/grease inside! result is after six months of running dry and its toast, if yours hasnt done much work you may be lucky

i fix the cars and quad bikes for a buddy of mine and seen the same issue 4 times! good luck


Lon More
29th Apr 2012, 08:35
the prob is that in the instruction book you get with this junk doesnt tell you to put oil/grease inside! result is after six months of running dry and its toast

all part of the big plan. You then have to take it back to the dealer who will replace the parts, still not telling you to grease them; then a year later .....

Velly crever Chinee :ugh:

A A Gruntpuddock
29th Apr 2012, 09:05
I read some where that putting the bits into a jar of Coke will clean them up and remove all the gunk - never tried it though.

29th Apr 2012, 09:11
Try an ultrasound cleaner if you have access to one .Jets are soft so poking with steel wire etc can easily damage them
Unleaded fuel goes off and gums things up .

29th Apr 2012, 09:31
Are there not fuel additives that would have cleaned out the gunk without all the hassle?

29th Apr 2012, 09:48
You should never clean a jet with a wire as a rule.
The jet is sized not by the bore, but by a constriction within the bore to the rated size. This is a thin constriction and can be easily damaged by the wire.
Correct practice is to blow out the jet with air. You can usually achieve this by blowing through the jet. If this fails try using the spray tube of a can of WD40. If you HAVE to run the jet through, try an artists paint brush.

flying lid
29th Apr 2012, 10:47
Metal from China = Shyte


29th Apr 2012, 10:56
Metal from China = Shyte

Oi! :ooh:

Regards, ShyTe

29th Apr 2012, 11:34
flying lid

Metal from China = Shyte

Totally disagree.
The most reliable car I have ever had is Chinese, a Chery Tiggo. Three years no problems, turn on the ignition and go, stop and turn off. 72,000 Kms over a three year period and no problems.

Prior to this I have had BMWs, Jags, Audis, Trabant Rover, etc. From that list the Trabant Rover was the most reliable and the Audis were crap. Previous car was a 5.7 Ltr Dodge Charger and the front brakes needed renewing at 32000 Kms!

So impressed with the Chinese Chery Tiggo I have just bought another one, a 2 Ltr auto.


P.S. Cleaning a carburettor with wire is not recommended!

G&T ice n slice
29th Apr 2012, 11:41
Goodd Grief! - 11 posts and no one has posted the "s--- in the carburettor" joke

29th Apr 2012, 13:08
"How often do I have to do that?" :confused: :}

29th Apr 2012, 13:11
A blonde pushes her BMW into a gas station. She tells the mechanic it died.
After he works on it for a few minutes, it is idling smoothly. She says, "What's the story?"
He replies, "Just crap in the carburetor."
She asks, "How often do I have to do that?"

29th Apr 2012, 16:09
The quickest way to clean a carb is to use a highly volatile solvent. Let soak for a whle and then add another fresh batch and light it off with a match.

That should give you room to add fuel injection later

Loose rivets
29th Apr 2012, 17:28
Well, that cheered me up on this bleak Sunday.

I hasten to add my cuts were in the middle.

Scooter Forum and Messageboard by Scooter Invasion ~ View topic - Silly Tao Tao carburetor... (Photos) (http://www.scooterinvasion.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3070&sid=baa5dacd9904482819730873216c7bc0)

What with computer problems and carburetors, I'll likely soak the laptop in solvent and format the four wheel . . . objects. Mmm, thinks . . .

I used copper wire on the jet. Very much smaller than the main bore. I have a huge Sears Compressor here (so cheap I couldn't leave it in the store - and they gave me loadsa power tools thrown in. All about the price of the motor on my home-made UK one.)

Anyway, not even 120 psi blast would move stuff. I used brake cleaner as a solvent, but I have a problem with reacting to chemicals so have to be careful these days. My mate told me years ago about soaking Japanese carbs in cellulose paint thinner. ICI 222 wasn't it?

Interesting about the unleaded fuel being gooey. Most of my hobbying was done with proper fuel. Was it really less likely to turn to goop?

Back to . . . erm, what was I doing?

Juliet Sierra Papa
29th Apr 2012, 18:53
I've been trying to help get a pair of Chinese replica 4-wheeler things going for the grand-kids. They're not very old.

Loose, would that be the Quads or the Kids?


Loose rivets
29th Apr 2012, 19:43
Hah! As someone that's been learning to write, I can't believe I still fall into these traps. Quads less than a year old.

I mentioned the rear drive to my son. I'll make sure of the type and lube thanks.

They were waaaaaaay past soaking while closed up. Nowhere for the gunk to get out. Even the large drain screw was clogged!

First carb just left with son. Will report later.

unstable load
29th Apr 2012, 21:17
If you have a high E numbered fuel, you may experience difficulties with corrosion in the carb now the protective coating is removed.....
A bit of a Catch-22, the protective coating goes gooey, and as soon as it's removed, the bugger starts disintegrating..................

Lon More
30th Apr 2012, 05:04
Jim Davidson - the carb joke starts at 3minutes.

Loose rivets
30th Apr 2012, 07:14
Gosh, doesn't he look young?

I have on tape somewhere, one of his shows where he's introducing two things I taped, but are in the UK. One was the introduction to the world of the prettly little Samantha Mumba, the other was two girls singing. Very, very funny.

Loved both. Any recordings of them know to this illustrious group?

30th Apr 2012, 16:54
Once upon a time you could leave gas in a tank for a year or more and it was good to go but modern gas has varnishes in it and some of the useful 'make it go' components break down. I have had gas that is useless after four months in a plastic gas can. Some motors seem to work better on old gas than other too. Our first Suburban hated it (four months and we had to drain the whole tank,) but the chain saw is good after a year (though that might be the oil mixture that saves it.)

Any motor that only gets used intermittently these days I put stabiliser in the gas, worth it just to avoid the hassle of siphoning and cleaning.

Loose rivets
30th Apr 2012, 17:20
Sorry, became fixated on Samantha Mumba last night. Back to carbs.

First Quad running fine. Now for number 2.

Well, it does seem confirmed about the fuel. Interesting the things one learns on Pprune. I'd better refresh me lawnmower backup tank.

Interesting about the oil additive. Could it be a small amount in ordinary car fuel would contain the problem? Mind you, I only did that withe very old cars, and never with injectors. The only way my old English mower would run was to put oil in the fuel. About the same mix as 2 stroke. The reason was, after 40 years, the compression was a tad down and the oil seemed to compensate for this. No oil, no power - every time.

The second batch of jets are soaking, and will see if they clean without physical probing. Using soft copper wire probes probably saved the day, but if it broke in there . . . :eek:

30th Apr 2012, 23:46
Blow Jobs

Having got your attention ..............

Talking of Blow Jobs ( weren’t we ? ) in my more affluent days I owned BMW 2002 Touring, (an early hatchback ) with a carb. - not injected.

The idling jet of the carb. would frequently block, but fortunately it was easily accessible, externally, and by carrying a suitable spanner in the glove box I became quite adept at giving it a quick Blow Job, and continuing my journey.

One dark night, at the end of the local Lovers Lane and following a Blow Job of a different kind in an illicit Liasion Dangereuse, the need arose to perform the act on my carb. Parked on the grass verge, with the G.F. holding a torch, I removed the blocked jet, performed the necessary act, then replaced the cleared jet and drove home. As we turned on to the main road, the G.F. quietly said “what would you have done if you had dropped it into the grass ? “

Good question, even now I shudder to think of the consequences, some 30 yrs. later !

A Man What Knows About These Things suggested an inline filter in the fuel line to the carb. and this was the last of the required Blow Jobs - on the carb. that is - but not long after a hole appeared in the petrol tank, and it was obvious that rust had been the culprit all along, not the 1980’s era British Petrol.

I was flying into Frankfurt occasionally in those days, and located a BMW dealer who was able to supply a new fuel tank for what was now a discontinued model, which I then proudly carried home as crew hand baggage – one could do that in those days – and the arriving crew that I was taking over from asked what I had there ? Extra fuel, I replied.

Loose rivets
1st May 2012, 00:07
I've shown this before, but it's a shot of my telly, showing a shot of a DVD, showing a transfer from 8mm. Can't believe it, but it's the only photo I have of that monster. It was left behind by a USAF guy and I got it for almost nowt.

The in-line filter started to get water in it, and a reverse blow-job was needed on longish runs. It took me a while to realize some local folk hated me and my great lumpy car.

A pal and I were in my garden with the hood up - sorry, bonnet. The engine was ticking over, and we'd been checking oils and the like. Suddenly, the engine gave a roar, and we jumped back, relieved to see the linkage had gone back to idle. It did it again, and again. I remember saying, 'lets stand back and look at it.' Gosh, I'd got a ways to go before managing jet engines.

Finally, I walked to the open driver's door, and there was another mate, sitting there with a huuuuuuuuuge grin on his chops, having crept in without even making the springs creak. He doesn't let me forget that.


Milo Minderbinder
1st May 2012, 00:23
"it's the only photo I have of that monster"

If you'd said nowt I'd have assumed it was a Vauxhall Cresta...

More to the point, very knowledgeable friend of mine reckons the way to clean carbs is to run them through the dishwasher for a couple of cycles and then bake them in the oven for a few hours
I assume he separates the jets (to stop differential expansion) and any plastic bits (eg floats on old Hondas) first, but he swears it works
However he does swear a lot anyway...

When was the shot taken? Judging from the state of the Anglebox it couldn't have been after 1967 Actually I'm confused - I don't remember an Anglia with a SINGLE chrome trim strip and a badge on the "C" pillar. As far as I can remember the de luxes had one strip and no badge, the Supers two strips and a badge. The single colour rules out it being a "Super" with the 1200cc engine. They had contrasting paint on the pillars and roof

Loose rivets
1st May 2012, 02:12
It weighed in at a lot more than the Crester. It was humongous for the day.

Here's a good site with a selection of views of a nicely restored convertible.

I could have upgraded mine to a soft top for 150 quid, with a London dealer on the edge of the North Circular. Wish I had, but it would have doubled the price!

So many hours behind those dials. The S, was for Sports mode or 'SuperDrive.' Fine example of the early Hydromatic Gearbox.

On one of my first jobs, I slept in it at LGW, to save 10/= a night B&B.

Criiiiiiiiiiiiiinge. Posing at any cost. :\

Amazing 1957 Oldsmobile Super 88 for Sale (http://www.leftcoastclassics.com/1957-oldsmobile-super-88/)

So embarrassing now, cos many old-timers at home remember me in that era. The Rob in the file name is a guy who took the film. He and his dad owned the caravan site nearby, dancing, bars and the like. They made a fortune and imported RHD American cars. I had to emulate him.

We're still friends, and he did the copying of a lot of the movies he made in that time. I look at them while I'm here, and think of how much I wanted that brighter, lighter American lifestyle. There's a Caddy in the dancehall-sized garage, but I'd swap it for a Moggie in a New York minute - if I could be back home in a nice little cottage.

He's Telecini guy now, doing what he has always loved to do. This is a plug, but I was sworn to secrecy about this item on his blog. I guess it's okay to pass it on now. It stunned me when I watched it. I can't describe how I felt watching the normality of . . . well, you'll see what I mean, and perhaps now, be able to see the footage via the Imperial War Museum.

Go to Blog.

Why Telecine Guy? | Experienced film transfer professional | Colchester Essex (http://www.telecineguy.com/why_use_tg.html)