Electric fuel pump recommendations?

Discussion in 'General Automotive Questions' started by Sophie948, Apr 21, 2017 at 12:15 AM.

  1. Sophie948

    Sophie948 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    338
    Considering replacing the mechanical fuel pump on my '65 Ranchero by mounting an electric one back by the fuel tank.

    Very important that it be reliable/durable. Don't need anything fancy - it's a daily driver with a stock 289 engine. Be a good thing if fuel pressure is below 6.5 pounds so I don't have to also buy a pressure regulator.

    Recommendations?
     
  2. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Portland OR
    I thought about doing that too Sophie because I was having any issue with noisy mechanical pumps. Turned out to be a problem with the timing chain set. After I fixed that, I put on a Carter mechanical and it's fine.

    I think for a stock daily driver you would be happier with a mechanical. There's a fair amount of wiring involved with an electric, especially if you want some additional safety features that will turn it off if the engine quits or you lose oil pressure.

    Summit Racing is where I shopped; they have a large selection of low-pressure pumps, wiring kits & new fuel line. Here's the parts I considered:

    Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 6.52.56 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 6.53.20 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 6.53.39 AM.png Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 6.54.17 AM.png
     
  3. Sophie948

    Sophie948 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    338
    Thanks, Beerbelly.

    Yes, I really like Summit. In checking out their site I found that Carter sells an oil pressure safety switch (PN 169-1002) for use with electric fuel pumps. I don't think a oil pressure warning light sending unit would work - in fact, I think it would do quite the opposite of what's intended, sending current to the pump when the oil pressure is down. But I hadn't considered the need to have something to shut down the pump if the engine kills.

    And I see that Summit sells a Carter check valve (PN 169-1002) so the fuel line doesn't drain empty when the engine's off for a while. My only experience with electric fuel pumps is on early 60's British sports cars. You'd turn on the ignition, wait until you heard the fuel pump stop clicking, and then start the car. Never quite knew what that was about. Now I know. Check valve would eliminate the need for doing that.

    I'd been considering a Carter rotary vane universal electric fuel pump, but don't know what the difference is between that and the other Carter fuel pumps. Do you know? I know what rotary vane means but that's about it.

    And I see that Summit sells a relay kit for use with electric fuel pumps. Do you know if that's necessary?

    I'm considering your advice to just stay with a mechanical fuel pump. I had a problem with vapor lock in the fuel line, which I think was mostly or entirely due to an exhaust leak (now fixed) spewing hot exhaust gas on the fuel line. But in researching that I found that vapor lock in 65 Rancheros isn't uncommon because the mechanical pump sucks on the fuel (as opposed to a rear-mounted electric fuel pump pushing it), lowering the pressure in the fuel line and thus lowering the boiling point. In fact, I found a defunct and disconnected electric fuel pump mounted back by the tank.

    PS One thing I like about Carters is that at last report they were being made in the USA. Other brands seem to be mostly made in China. As much as I can I boycott Chinese products and I'm sure you've noticed that I've brought China to its economic knees.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017 at 8:48 PM
  4. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Portland OR
    I think "defunct and disconnected" tells you what you need to know Sophie; failure at some level. Mechanical pumps were the standard pretty much until fuel injection came to be, so it's a proven technology. I also have heard about the vapor lock issues, and I don't believe it's caused by the nature of the pump, but rather routing of fuel lines, and residual heat being transferred to the carburetor, boiling fuel in the carb bowls. I installed an Edelbrock carb spacer/insulator under my Edelbrock 1403, and have never had a problem with vapor lock or hot starts. Here's the part I'm using:

    Screen Shot 2017-04-21 at 7.12.46 PM.png
     
  5. Sophie948

    Sophie948 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    338
    Yes, I knew about vapor lock at the engine, and about using a non-metallic spacer to fix it. I've got a metallic spacer, maybe adapter I dunno, but that hasn't been a problem for me. I was very surprised when I found that I had vapor lock somewhere between the fuel pump and the tank - I hadn't known that was possible. In any event, you've talked me into staying with the mechanical pump unless I get that problem again - I think I probably fixed it by fixing the exhaust leak.

    But as your posts are wont to do, I'm left with two more questions. I'm running a stock 289 in a '65 as you are:

    Anyway, my carb is an Edelbrock 1406 (600CFM) that needs replacement because of vacuum leak where the throttle rod enters the body. I was going to put on another 1406; I was pleased with the 1406 until it developed the vacuum leak. But I see that you're running a 1403 (500CFM). Can I presume that you'd recommend the 1403 when I replace the 1406?

    And I don't know diddly about spacers except that some have a big square hole (like my metal one) and others have 4 holes like the one you show. So should I have a 4-hole spacer/adapter/whatever instead of the one I currently have?

    It's got a stock intake manifold but I don't know whether the vehicle originally had a 2-barrel carb or a 4-barrel, suspect the former, and don't know whether that would mean different stock manifolds.

    Anyway, the DPO knew even less about working on cars than I do, but that never stopped him so it's quite possible that I've got the wrong setup.

    Actually, I've got a third question:
    I see that you've got the '65 that I want, Deluxe with a 4-speed. Do you want to trade straight across for a standard '65 with a bench seat, auto tranny 3-on-the-tree, stock 289, custom rust in the cowling to keep your feet cool when it rains by leaking, and tasteful application of primer on various portions of the body? It does have a brand new dual exhaust system, but it's pretty stock and not like the one it replaced which had a fuel line pre-heating feature.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2017 at 11:22 PM
  6. 5.0 Chero

    5.0 Chero MODERATOR Staff Member

    Messages:
    12,678
    Location:
    Prunetucky California
    Actually that one will do just that. It was used on Chevy Vegas that had a electrical fuel pump with a Carb. if you notice it has 3 terminals 1 is for idiot light the other 2 are for the fuel pump circuit no oil pressure fuel pump no workie
     
  7. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Portland OR
    I take my direction about carb size on a STOCK engine from the manufacturer Sophie, since they have smart people paid to make stuff to work. The standard Ford Autolite 4100 carb used on the '65 289 with a 4 bbl. was rated at 480 cfm, so an aftermarket 500 seem just about right. As I mentioned on another thread, my car came to me with a Holley 600, and it never seemed to run right. Hard starting, random idle, stumble on acceleration, surging. It could be that the previous owner thought he was a "tuner"; who knows? I replaced it with an Edelbrock 1403 500, and couldn't be happier. Like others have said, plug & play. Instant starting, rock solid idle, no surging, and snappier acceleration. For a modified engine though, carb size can be whatever matches the modifications.

    I'm not sure about the 1 hole vs. 4 hole spacer, but I do believe a phenolic or wood spacer is a better choice than a metal one. Metal conducts heat better than phenolic, which is the opposite of what you want.

    And thanks for the trade offer, but the real deal breaker is the foot cooling option; we get enough dampness here in Oregon as it is!

    Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 6.09.52 AM.png
     
  8. Sophie948

    Sophie948 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    338
    "...since they have smart people paid to make stuff to work."

    Yeah, right, beerbelly. Those same folks designed the front cowl drainage, the miniature drain holes in the smuggler's box, and the swell gas tanks in '65 Rancheros. Not to mention their rather sporting approach to rustproofing.

    That said...

    You've talked me into a 1403. Weird that it's more expensive than the 1406.

    [I'm jealous of your living in Portland. I tried to move to Oregon in the early 70's to Escape From LA, but the Oregon economy was crashing along with the timber industry so there were no jobs. And I kinda took the hint when I saw the sign at the border: "Welcome to Oregon. Now go home."]
     
  9. beerbelly

    beerbelly In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    295
    Location:
    Portland OR
    Point taken Sophie. But my brother-in-law's '65 El Camino has most of the same issues; I suppose the engineers were all reading the same magazines or drinking the same Kool Aid back then...
    But hey, that's what's called "character" I suppose, which these old cars have in spades (long with rattles, squeaks, smells, etc.). My wife has a brand new Honda Fit, a great little appliance that looks just like every other jellybean on the road. But if I want a fun drive, the Ranchero is the only choice.

    It occurs to me that the metal spacer you have may be a factory part with a vacuum port on it for PCV hookup. You may be able to substitute the phenolic one for it, since the Edelbrock has a port for that. I think you'll enjoy that 500.
     
  10. ribald1

    ribald1 In Maximum Overdrive PLATINUM MEMBER

    Messages:
    16,091
    Location:
    California
    The manufacturers use of small 4bbl carbs is/was to increase fuel economy over similarly sized 2bbl carbs.
    You probably did get a Holley that was improperly tinkered with.
     
  11. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

    Messages:
    4,598
    Location:
    Everett, WA
    There is the argument (my old boss the carb rebuilder/racer/Army piston engine mechanic put to me) that a 'spreadbore' carb can bring better cruise numbers due to its smaller primaries, but make gobs of power and eat down the fuel when the secondaries kick in. It's a tradeoff vs. the standard 2-bbl for sure, but as long as you hold the throttle as steady as possible, that spreadbore can surprise you with better economy.
     

Share This Page