carburetor tuning: 61/62 Ranchero

Discussion in 'Ranchero Tech Help' started by toddrichert, Jun 26, 2021.

  1. toddrichert

    toddrichert In Second Gear

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    Well I've got the 1961 Ranchero running with the 144 installed from the 1962 Ranchero. It's enough to go short distances but running rough, with intermittent misfiring. Fortunately the temp gauge is working to warn me before the overheating gets dangerous or scary. I can get to town and back but wouldn't dare try an extended drive without planned cooling-down stops.

    I've never adjusted carburetors before and the youtube videos I've looked up have only left me more confused. Does anyone know of a youtube (or elsewhere) video showing how I diagnose/adjust/fix the early 60's 1-barrel Holley carburetor?

    My original Ranchero (back in the 80's) could put the choke back to wide open after only a few minutes of warm up, but this engine immediately dies if I do that, and requires me to keep a partial choke just to keep running, which also makes it run at higher RPMs (not a comfortable idle.) I'm assuming that means it is running too lean, if I have to keep it somewhat choked just to keep it from dying. Is that a correct assumption?

    I should mention as background, I did put all new tune up parts on: plugs, wires, cap, rotor, points, condenser. But it runs exactly the same as it did before I replaced all those things, zero change...

    Grateful for your any input and instruction, as always!
     
  2. pmrphil

    pmrphil In Maximum Overdrive GOLD MEMBER

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    Yup, choke should be off after warming up, needs more fuel than it's getting. A cleaning of the main jet (maybe a SLIGHT enlarging .002-.003 bigger) may help.
     
  3. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Just to make sure, did you use a dwell meter to dial in the points, followed by checking/setting timing and verifying timing advance, in that order? Anything not set right can make the ignition retarded, which can cause the engine to run hotter as well as make the exhaust glow red.
     
  4. toddrichert

    toddrichert In Second Gear

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    Thanks for asking because no, I don't know how to do any of that! But I was under the impression that I should learn how to fix my fuel ratio first before trying to verify timing issues. Is that the best order to tackle this? Or should I be concerned with timing ahead of carburetor issues?
     
  5. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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  6. Hillbilly

    Hillbilly In Maximum Overdrive

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    As BeerBelly brought up, first invest in a good shop manual. All those simple steps required to make a pre-computer car run correctly have a basic parameter of numbers that you will find in a good manual. Then invest in a simple dwell/tachometer meter along with a simple inductive timing light. Guessing at the correct settings is fine for finding if you have an engine to work with, dialing it in to get the best performance takes those basic tools to get the most bang for your bucks. Using those tools will help you educate yourself and visualize photos in a book translated over to what those mystery parts are doing. Tools are your friends, use them. You don't need fancy, just good basic tools that won't break the bank.
     
    handy_andy_cv64 and Kiwirancher like this.
  7. toddrichert

    toddrichert In Second Gear

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    To follow up on this thread, I finally did find someone locally to fix my carburetor. He made some initial adjustments which improved it but said it had vacuum leaks and he couldn't do anything more without a full rebuild. Also his shop couldn't find any supplier for the correct rebuild kit so I had to hunt that down on my own. My holley has 2346-2 stamped on the side and that helped NAPA track down part 2-5611 (carburetor rebuild kit) in case anyone has the same need. So he rebuilt that carburetor for me and also used a dwell meter to adjust my points correctly. Just got her back from the shop earlier this week and now she's purring like a kitten!
     
    kroezer54 and Jeff B like this.

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