Dutton Kit Cars and their owners

I put up a thread about problems i was having with the car a few months ago which can be found under my post 

Any help on getting the engine running smoothly???

Hi - I need some help again with a problem I have with my Phaeton. All was going well after i fixed the carb problems but recently i have discovered a further fault. It was running ok for a short time but then I took it out for a short run on boxing day and it started to splutter and eventually cut out on me. It refused to start again and I ended up getting towed home. I have since then had no luck getting it to start since. There is a strong spark at each of the plugs 9 checked by holding each one out against the rocker cover and turning the engine over). There is also fuel getting through as the plugs are wet after turning the engine over. The timing is still set good and nothing appears to have slipped. So i am at a loss as to why the engine spins over, there is a spark and fuel - so why won't it fire up anymore? Any help greatkly appreciated.

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I had this exact problem a couple of years back, the AA man said it was the fuel pump, turned out to be the condenser..... it now has electronic ignition :-)  

Thanks. Which distributor would I need to put on to make it electronic ignition and take the points system off.

I used the accuspark stealth kit in my existing distributor (Bosch) which completely replaces the points and condenser, after I got the car running I decided to fit one of their coils too. I'm sure they do a kit for either type of distributor and its very easy to do.

OK - so an update - worked on it all day today - got a powerspark electronic distributor and fitted it today - no issues there. Got a new set of accuspark triple cored plugs in that are getting a strong spark. Did a compression test and all 4 cylinders are good. Turned over and moved the distributor to try and get it to fire. The engine after ages and lots of revving fired and seems to be running on one cylinder. Checked fuel is being squirted into the carb ok - all good there. The plugs however seem quite dry when checked after turning it over for a while. I would have thought they would have been soaked. This has confounded me so far as it has a friend with a lot of experience of these pinto engines. Any further ideas or suggestions appreciated....

When I put the new distributor in I set the rotor to point roughly at lead 1.we then tried to start it and when it did eventually fire it was only running really roughly on 1 or 2 cylinders. When it was running like this we moved the distributor round to try and get it running properly but it didn't improve. Don't understand why it isn't firing on all pots...

I would check that you have the ignition leads in the correct order going into the distributor for the Pinto firing order. If that is wrong then you might only get 1 or 2 cylinders firing and if you change the timing you might be getting one of the others instead. There are two ways to get it wrong because it depends on a) the firing order and b) the direction that the distributor rotates. The Pinto is 1-3-4-2 and the rotor arm rotates clockwise.

I have an Accuspark Bosch conversion in my Legerra. The 'firing' point is way off where you would expect it to be. It took quite a few attempts to get the right 'slot' on the dizzy. 
With so many altered variables in play I would go back to basics and start by setting TDC and cam timing by eye followed by distributor timing. Set the dizzy so you have maximum rotation available and get someone else to operate the key while you rotate the body of the dizzy. If it fires make a note of the rotor arm position at TDC in relation to the ignition pack. Remember the pinto will fire when setup 180 degrees out too so be prepared for multiple attempts.Once the firing point has been found leave the dizzy alone and return the engine to TDC by rotating clockwise with a 19mm spanner. pop the dizzy cap and tippex the mark on the lobe and on the pack to make them line up. Remove the dizzy again and set to optimum position using your tippex marks as reference, then go for a fine tune using a timing light on number one. Do this with the vacumn pipes blocked both ends so vac advance has no effect.

Thanks - I set the static timing by putting the engine to TDC and noting the firing position rotor of the original distributor was pointing at plug lead 1. The firing order of leads on the distributor cap is correct. When I put the new distributor in with the cap on I again positioned it with the rotor arm pointing to the position of the 1st lead. I realise this is just a rough setting but even when we turned the engine over and moved the distributor body through a fairly wide range when it did fire and run it was if it was only on 1 or 2 cylinders. It cant be the wrong way round as if i set it 180 round it would be firing at cylinder 4. We are going to try fresh fuel being fed directly into the system to see if the fuel is contaminated.

You can just take off the air filter and slosh some petrol down the carb. I do that when the car has been standing for a while in order to save using the battery to turn over the engine just to pump the fuel into the carb. I don't actually measure it but I would guess that I put 20-30ml (about 1 alcohol measure). Then the car starts first turn and by the time that the fuel is used up then the fuel pump has filled the carb.

We squirted a lot of fresh fuel directly into the carb as we were turning the engine over and when it did run the engine was only firing on 1 or 2. Will do the fresh fuel thing and have a look at the baseline settings for the timing - the setting is in there somewhere!!!

I just had a look at the position of the distributor and the relation with the rotor arm and found the red sensor on the distributor was 180 degrees off from lead 1.I am now setting the rotor arm to point at the sensor when the engine is at tdc and making sure the distributor cap is lined up with lead 1 at this position. I am sure I am getting somewhere now.

Start with TDC, check camshaft position - crank rotates twice for every turn of the cam. (this may be rubbish thinking about it but you do need to check the cam timing is correct) 

If the crank and cam are pointing at the markers THEN you can set the dizzy.


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