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Underbody braces, turbos and more!

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:26 pm 
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Location: Portland, Oregon
Hey, I want to start off saying I know very little about cars but I am eager to learn :). I have recently picked up a 1988 Chevy Sprint Metro (non turbo) and was able to drive it all the way home which was about an hour away.

The car has always been a bit tricky to start cold (had to feather the gas for a bit) which I'm not sure is normal or not, but I've been able to drive it and it seemed pretty solid as my daily driver for about a week.

A couple days ago however, there was a prominent squeaking that happened when the car finally started after a cold start, but usually once it's was warn, starting up again was very easy. The next day, I was able to start it but after it was running and everything I took my foot off the gas (to kind of feather it to start), and the engine sputtered and died after a few seconds. I don't know if those two issues are related, but maybe they are?

I was thinking it was probably an issue with the car not getting enough fuel because it ran well with my foot on and I was even able to pull it out of the drive way, but as soon as I took my foot off the gas, it died. I poked around the internet for a bit and thought that maybe the fuel pump went out or the fuel filter could be old and pretty clogged, so feathering the gas pedal could've helped push some more fuel in.

I bought a new fuel filter and installed but, and nothing changed :(

I bought a new air filter and have done multiple "cleans" of carb cleaner, allowing the the cleaner to get into the carb and idling and getting a couple revs here and there

My friend who knows a little more than me about cars says that the engine does shake more than usual so maybe it shook something loose?

I have gotten some help at the Geo Metro Forum and was told to try to get ahold of a vacuum tester, which I have yet to do. They also linked me this book http://s145.photobucket.com/user/pacapo/library/MK1%20Carb%20Manual?sort=6&src=wap&page=1 and I have browsed through it a bit and am thinking it could be an issue with the computer or EGR valve or something, I just don't know how to move forward in diagnosing the problem.

I also had the tank of gas about a third full and poured seafoam into it because I read that it can help clean out carburetors and I have taken it out to drive a couple of times, which was very difficult with one foot always on the gas, after I drove it when I pulled back in, I took my foot off and the engine stayed on a little longer at a super low idle (probably not good) before I killed it.

It is straight piped, and after I poured the seafoam in, it backfires quite a bit just when idling.

Here are some pictures from the other thread:

Image

Image

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I was wondering if anymore had any advice on what to do to get this car driving again, I would greatly appreciate it! :) Thanks!


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 15, 2017 8:33 am 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
Mods please move this to the MK1 section.

It sounds like your carburetor isn't adjusted properly.

Have your friend get a somewhat long Phillip's screwdriver and adjust the warm idle to 850rpm, or whatever is indicated on your underhood sticker.

You will need to do a compression test, obtain a timing light and (as you mentioned) a vacuum gauge to adjust it properly from there.

Until then, there's a screw to increase the idle which you can access from behind the air horn of the air cleaner (missing in your photo).
It isn't easy to find, so study this picture well.
You are looking at a throttle body, and it has two holes - a large one and a small one.
Immediately below the small one is a phillip's head screw facing the right side of the throttle body:
Image

Once the vehicle is warmed up, that is the screw you use to adjust the warm idle.
Screw it in to speed up the engine, and out to slow it down.
It won't adjust until the coolant has warmed up and shouldn't be adjusted too radically.

Straight pipes are not something recommended by the Moderators here and an insult to most of the well meaning automobile mechanics/technicians throughout the U.S. who do a great job of repairing vehicles day in and day out. If you are poor, I get it, but you should show society your willingness to repair a car in a manner which won't smell them out when they are behind you at a stop light. So save some money for a catalytic converter and install one when you can. You are young; as you age you will appreciate being able to run up and down the road without women politicians restricting you from repairing cars if you take my advice. Moderator T3ragtop and others are especially militant about not running a catalytic converter because it is against Federal law, unnecessarily puts pollutants into the air, doesn't detract from performance, is what they do in Ohio, shows how wise they are as mechanics, etc. etc. etc. Enough said on catalytic converters - when you get a little cash, have one put on your car and other motorists will thank you.

There is nothing wrong with your ECM (car computer). Under the dash is a switch to prove me right.
You flip it and when you turn the key on, but do not start it, there will be a series of flashes.
That will explain if there are any components under the hood attached to the engine which need to be changed.
If you keep this thread civil, we can go into more detail about it.

Another no no that you mention is the use of Seafoam.
Although used on the East Coast, no self respecting West Coast mechanic uses it.
Fortunately, you have straight pipes, and you haven't overwhelmed a catalytic converter with raw HC (Seafoam).
Once you do put a catalytic converter on the car, avoid using any similar product because it will harm the cat, or reduce its useful life.
If you want to lubricate the overhead in a lawn mower, that's your business...ha!

Your engine shakes?
One thing I noticed is that your #3 spark plug wire is not attached to its clip on the valve cover.
You've got the engine cleaned nicely, but you've got to pay more attention to detail with these powerplants.
Put the spark plug wire back, and then check the timing.
After that, check the vacuum at idle and post a video of what the needle does: steady, vibrates or?
After that, you will need to do a compression test.
After that, you will need to adjust the valves.
After that, you can adjust or install a rebuilt carburetor.
Then it will idle rock solid.

Write down this list.
It is written in a logical sequence which takes you from easy to difficult/cheap to expensive things to do on your engine.

The carburetor is probably the main problem on your vehicle and an easy test to see if it needs a rebuild can be done without any test equipment.
If you want to know what to look for, be sure to ask in your next post.

Your car will be most reliable if you put it back the way it came off the show room floor.
Crazy as it sounds, you spend money now to fix it right, and then you only drive it and change the fluids regularly.
In the long run it is cheaper than screwing around now, ruining the car, and buying another one to try and repair.

As you are new to the world of car repairs, your attitude should be commended. Stay willing to learn, open minded, and steadily work at getting this OBD-I vehicle back in stock trim.
If you can succeed, the vehicle will last you for 20 years and provide the most economical transportation you can find.
So far, you are ahead of 90% of previous owners, who have tried...failed...and given up because they lost their will to learn.

Almost forgot: everyone now drives large cars, so expect other motorists to try and 'brow beat' you on the road. Gone are the days of defensive driving and road courtesy.
Your revenge?
You will be King of the Pump.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:00 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:15 pm
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Location: Portland, Oregon
Sorry for the late reply, I almost finished typing out a post but my browser crashed :(.

I was looking for the idle screw in my car but I'm not 100% sure which screw is the right one, I think it's this one from the description you gave, but before I muck with anything, I want to be sure. I looked through online carb manual I was linked to and I think there's like three different idle screws, idle up, the mixture adjuster, and the fast idle. I don't know which is where though.
Image

I think if it's that one it would put it about there on the carb, right?

As for the tools, I haven't had any luck finding ones to borrow, so I'm thinking of just buying them. I've looked at several different ones, ranging from around $30 to $200, I'm not sure what price range is right for me for the timing light and vacuum gage so any advice on that is appreciated.

This timing light is cheap I think, I just want to get one that will get the job done well but for cheap :)
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Innova-Inductive-Timing-Light-epi3551/206888863?cm_mmc=Shopping%7cTHD%7cG%7c0%7cG-BASE-PLA-D25T-Garage-Automotive%7c&gclid=CN3xt42kydQCFQiUfgod9jYEcw&gclsrc=aw.ds

I think it's kind of the same story for the vacuum gages as well, but some recommendation on what would be best for me would be great!

Also, there's no RRM gauge (tachometer I think) so will the timing light be able to tell me what the RPM is so I can get it to 850?

I don't know much about spark plugs, but I think they're right there in the red in the picture. #3 is the one on the right, right? I'm not sure how to clip it back in though or what the effects of not having it in are.
Image

What should I look for to see if my carburetor needs to be rebuilt? Should I check this first or do I need to check all the above first before checking the carb?

As for the seafoam, why don't people use it around here? It seems like it can't hurt to try it, but hopefully I can get the car stable enough to burn through the rest and put normal gas back in. Same goes for the catalytic converter, I don't want to be putting money into something I don't know if I can fix yet haha, but if I do, I will definitely have one put in when I have the money.

Sorry if these questions are obvious, they aren't to me and it's hard to learn to from scratch without having someone around to show me physically what to do so I really appreciate all the help you're giving me! Thanks! :)


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:44 am 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
First, the spark plug wires.
Take a look at your picture, inside the middle red oval.
Now look at a normal set of spark plug wires:
Image
and see if you can spot the difference.

Are you still with me?


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 24, 2017 12:24 am 
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Location: Portland, Oregon
Yeah I gotcha! I'm home right now to take a pic, but I did get a chance to push the wire for it back into the clip so now it's looking like your picture :) - so obvious I don't know how I didn't see it before!


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 24, 2017 1:11 am 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
davisb wrote:
Yeah I gotcha! I'm home right now to take a pic, but I did get a chance to push the wire for it back into the clip so now it's looking like your picture :) - so obvious I don't know how I didn't see it before!

Yep. Your pictures are great, but just take it one step at a time and you can get it running like a champ.

Since you are trying to learn, you have to be able to admit a mistake, or at least that there are a few who know some tricks to teach you. You seem to be learning, so you're probably okay.


Now, are you willing to buy a diagnostic tool?



Image


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 25, 2017 1:27 am 
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Location: Portland, Oregon
Is that like a mult-use diagnostic tool? The ones I've looked at haven't looked like that. Also, about how much should I spend on one?

EDIT** I found the one in the picture, I'll buy it and try to learn how to use it!


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 27, 2017 3:16 pm 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
You sir, are either a wise student or a blooming idiot...and I'm leaning towards student.
These are the original DIY cars offered by Suzuki and are indeed repairable if you are willing to spend a little time getting it back into shape.
Down the line, if you sell the car and no longer need the tool, you can sell it, so choose carefully and take care of it.
The one pictured above can be used to set the floats in the carburetor, according to Phil N Ed.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 7:20 pm 
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Location: Prince George B.C. Canada
pacapo wrote:
The one pictured above can be used to set the floats in the carburetor, according to Phil N Ed.


What ever happened to Phil and Ed :huh: ?


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 11:04 pm 
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Location: Portland, Oregon
The diagnostic tool came in! I have opened it up, but don't know where to start. A manual came with it and I've read it and it was pretty interesting, but I need some help on how to start testing some of the things from the manual
Here are a few pictures of the manual, these are the things I think would be good to test
http://imgur.com/a/6O30l

I'll try to poke around online to see if I can find a video too :)


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:26 pm 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
Check the vacuum at these two places:
-the small vacuum line leading from the EGR valve
-the line attached to the secondary diaphragm.
Sorry, can't post pictures anymore.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 10:08 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:15 pm
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Location: Portland, Oregon
I think I successfully checked it! I don't think it is the causing the problem, but I'll walk through what happened:

I found the EGR in the back of the carb and found that I needed to get a 10mm metric socket to get it off. I popped the hoses off and unscrewed it and pulled it out.

The first thing I wanted to test was to see if it was stuck open because that's what causes symptoms similar to mine. I read that spraying something like carb cleaner, which I have, is okay to test if the valve is sealing fully or is stuck open, and I tried it and stuff did seep through. It was very dirty is maybe it was clogged or something but I think I cleaned it out a little after a few sprays of the carb cleaner.

Once it was clean, I could see that the valve was in fact shutting, as it behaved normally under the vacuum pump and held the vacuum. But when I tested the carb cleaner again, it would still leak out pretty slowly. I don't know if that small of a leak could be causing issues like this, so I don't want to drop the dough and replace it just yet.

It felt really cool to be able to get under the hood and do something productive and kind of knowing I was actually doing haha :)

What should I test next?


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 2:38 pm 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
secondary diaphragm


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:01 pm 
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Location: Portland, Oregon
I tested what I think it the secondary diaphragm! It was on the left side of the carb and was kinda tucked in there, it had a little lever arm just like the one in the video I watched did, so I think it's it, I tried to remove, but one of the screws was on too tight (tried not to strip anything) and then realized I could just slide off the hose from the top of it and see if it held the vacuum from the pump.

It seemed to work as it should and held the vacuum and the lever moved and everything. I have some pictures that I'll try to upload soon but what should I do or test in the meantime?


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:29 pm 
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Location: Palm Springs, Calif
choke pull off
8)


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