Dutton Kit Cars and their owners

Morning All

Pinto, Ford Clutch and (probably) a rocket box.

Cable-operated clutch has failed to release in previous years after a rest of several weeks, has always released by the time-honoured method of making sure there is some clear space in front, depressing clutch pedal, engage 1st gear and start the engine. Clutch has always released with a bit of bang, but away we go.

Not this time though. Have warmed engine up with wooden strut holding clutch pedal down, still no luck. 

If I leave the clutch pedal wedged down for a couple of days, will it stretch the clutch cable?

If that doesn't work, I'll try spraying some brake cleaner between the plates.

More suggestions please! 

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It'll put strain on pressure plate as well. If you drive it a while most stuck plates burn off the gum and don't stick any more. It's one of those mysteries, some stick some don't.

Leaving the clutch depressed should not damage the cable or stretch it. Movement wears them but staying in one position is no problem.

I[I have never tried this, but..] How about putting the car on axle stands then starting it in 1st gear. The wheels will go around. Depress the clutch and hold it there. Rev the engine to 4000 rpm then stamp on the brake, keeping the clutch depressed all the time. Hopefully, the inertia of the engine will free the clutch.

I had this with a GTM (mini engine/box) years ago. Tried the jack up and brake method....but it didn't work. Worth a try though.

Better than dismantle, which is what I had to do in the end

Thanks for the replies. I'm a bit wary about running the thing at 4k rpm on stands and then braking hard!

A previous owner made a couple of holes in the bellhousing so I'll try and get some brake cleaner between the clutch plates. My fault for not using the Dutton enough ;( 

Just do the 4000rpm thing and get a mate to video it on his phone - that way, if it is a disaster, you can sell the clip to You've Been Framed for £250 to pay for repairs!

Still stuck! Tried spraying brake cleaner via the release arm slot and through the holes chain drilled into the bottom of the bellhousing by a previous owner, no luck. Tried 3k rpm on axle stands but the rear brakes couldn't hold the power of the Pinto. Also tried setting a high clutch pedal, but still no luck.

I'm going to chain drill a few holes higher up on the bellhousing so that the cleaner works it's way down through the plates.

With the limited access, I can't see the clutch plates, will brake cleaner spray as per the arrow find its way between the plates?

Axle stands, plugs out, fit remote starter button or get someone else to spin it over while you lay under and spray through the clutch fork hole ... just keep your face out of the way of the cleaner as it exits.

Is there anywhere near you could safely try to tow start it?

If it's this much of a problem and has been before, then the easiest answer might be a new clutch

Thanks again for the suggestions, clutch now free, I drilled a couple of holes higher up on the bellhousing and sprayed in lots of brake cleaner. 

I found a plan on the internet involving using a large trolley jack to lift the back end of a rear wheel drive car, driver seated, engine running and in gear with wheels spinning, assistant drops the trolley jack.

But obviously not that nuts if it worked. Happy days.... Now then, it's been stuck before and will stick again so well worth investing in a replacement this year I think.

Alternatively, make sure that you drive it regularly (says he who hasn't driven his for 6 months).


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