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Old 08-02-2014, 08:35 PM
PeterM PeterM is offline
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Default No fuel to fuel pump

Thanks for the great forum. I have a 60 T-bird 352 that's been stored in recent years. I've always had to prime the car several times after its set for 3-4 days to draw fuel to the carb. I'm working on it this summer and found that I'm not getting any fuel to the pump. Tank in original. Here's where I'm at:

- I removed the fuel feed line from the bottom of the pump and put air pressure to the line. I hear a slight "thunk" sound from the tank area and air seems to be going through.

- dumb question #1: if the line is clear, should gas flow from the line when I place it below the car with the gas cap off.

- dumb question #2: I only put around 3 gallons in the tank and probably will add more (didn't want to put more in, in case I had to drain tank). Maybe I didn't have enough in the tank to feed the pump?

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide. - Peter
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Old 08-02-2014, 11:09 PM
Tbird1044 Tbird1044 is offline
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#1. Gas would not necessarily flow from the line at the fuel pump, especially if you only have 3 gal. of gas in the tank. The Birds have a tendancy to sit low in the rear, so it is very possible the level in the tank is below your fuel line at the pump. I believe there is a filter sock, inside your tank, on the fuel line. If the car has been sitting, it is very possible this filter is plugged with rust etc. You may be able to blow air through it, but the fuel pump may not be strong enough to pull fuel through it. I hope you are removing the gas cap if you blow air back through the line. It doesn't take much pressure to distort a tank.
The fuel pump is designed to pull a small amount of vacuum to pull fuel from the tank and then controls the discharge pressure of the pump by using spring pressure.
I believe that the connection for the fuel pump, even though it is at the bottom of the tank, has an internal pipe going to the top of the tank, to prevent a major fuel leak if the flex line goes bad. This is probably why they also put a second drain connection on the tank, and the reason why would you would not have gas flowing in the line at the pump.
BTW, it is not at all uncommon for the old Autolite carbs to loose fuel after sitting for a few days. I fought mine for several weeks, until I finally got it to hold fuel in the float bowls. I can now go for weeks and it fires right up. ;-)
If you have a vacuum guage, you may want to hook it up to the fuel pump and see if the pump is withing specs. It should pull a small vacuum when you crank the car.

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Old 08-03-2014, 01:15 AM
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simplyconnected simplyconnected is offline
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I agree with everything Nyles posted. In addition I want to add my experience:
We're dealing in very old cars, here. We northerners suffer 'rust belt' problems that they don't have out west or down south.

Your pickup inside the tank has a fine mesh on the bottom of what looks like an inverted cup. Today's gas is not anything like it was back in the day. Today's gasohol sucks up water. 1980 gas (and earlier) would not mix with water, and it caused a lot of tank rust, line rust, etc. In winter, we used to buy 'drygas' which was exactly what's in modern gas.

Rust has nowhere to go in your tank. Fine particles clog the pickup until it backwashes some away. I pulled five handfuls of rust out of my '55 Ford gas tank.

The fuel line goes up and back down which is ok if the siphon isn't broken by:
A pinhole in the steel fuel tube (including inside the fuel tank),
A pinhole in a rubber hose,
A leaking connection,
The check valve inside the fuel pump is broken.

Two hundred buys a tank from (with our discount), steel fuel line costs under ten bucks and a foot of rubber hose costs another dollar. So, for ~$211.00 you can have a new fuel system. That's what I would do. - Dave
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Old 08-03-2014, 02:59 AM
Tbird1044 Tbird1044 is offline
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You bring up an interesting point about club discounts. I read somewhere that some of the vendors will discount prices, but I'm not sure who or how to take advantage of the discounts. Is there a club list that would provide this info?
Also I looked up gas tanks on Rockauto and they show (last one available). Looks like if anyone wants it, get it now.
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Old 08-03-2014, 09:38 AM
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Dakota Boy Dakota Boy is offline
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definitely buy a new tank

there is a little filter-sock thing inside that is probably giving you fits.
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