Has anyone with one of our cars ever had an issue with stalling due to transmission issue? Twice now car would be running fine, then would stall. Starts effortlessly every time, but either stalls the instant you put it into gear, or simply fades out before you can shift into drive. Thought it was a fuel pump issue, but then when tow truck came, we had to push the car a few inches and voila! It started and shifted into gear just fine, and drove home fine. I'm thinking moving the car a few inches had something to do with it...any thoughts?
you have to increase your idle speed a few hundred RPM so your engine can and will keep running with the increase when put it in gear
Not sure which carb you have but ——-turning your idle adjustment screw in will increase you RPM but be sure you are adjusting the correct screw— that is on the side of the carbs linkage
you may have to have the engine off and open the carb full throttle —-to see the adjustment screw— as I had to do on my Carter and Edelbrock carbs if that is the one you have
you may have to make a screw adjustment — start the car —and repeat until you are idling correctly in gear
Do a quarter turn at a time
I do not see how moving the car had much to do with your issue —but I would love to know that answer for myself and why there might be any need to be moving the car at all due to a stalling issue ( strange tow truck driver I think )
Thanks Tony, that's good advice. I actually have had a pretty good smooth strong idle, sometimes it would die as soon as I shifted, last night it would stall out after half a second before I even had a chance to shift.
Thinking it through, I am back to suspecting a bad fuel pump. The one in there is really old...plus when I was able to get the car running, it didn't sound right, even when I had the gas pedal halfway down. After I wrote my post I went out to the garage and tried again, wouldn't stay on for more than half a second.
Today I'll try feeding it gas manually from a bottle and see if it stays running that way. Don't look forward to replacing this myself, which I'll have to do because I live in metro Detroit and there are no mechanics who will touch a classic car for anything - you can't even get them to put new tires on anymore.
Maybe time for a carb rebuild. Depending on the carb, most shops will not be able to even recognize what you have. The original Carter and Rochester do not have a idle adjustment screw. The carbs have an air adjuster screw and fuel idle screws. A total of 3 screws to adjust, and it is very easy to misadjust and have the engine run lean causing an overheat issue.
If you have a newer Edelbrock carb, there is an idle adjustment screw.
Send the carb out to specialty shops. There are several reputable shops, and maybe in your home town.
Thanks Russ! Actually I did a rebuild on the carb last year, and it has been running great ever since...new accelerator pump, gaskets, needles, seats, screen, everything cleaned (it was flooding due to dirt trapped in the seats). But now, even when you have your foot halfway down on the pedal, it stalls out almost immediately. No amount of gas you can give it to keep it going. So the more I think about it, the more I think fuel pressure is way too low.
I'll go buy some gas today in a can and try feeding the carb with a tube, see if that fixes it...if so, I guess I'll have my answer, ugh. Right now it's in the garage with front bumper inches away from the wall, so doing this myself will be an ordeal. Guess I have no choice though, since no mechanics will tough it. Ironic, considering I live in the "Motor City" which should be the #1 place in the world to get these cars serviced, LOL!!
Update: Started the car this morning, ran smooth and strong until I tripped the choke for warm idle...then it stalled. Restarting is easy, but runs shorter and shorter before stalling. Wait half an hour, it runs fine until you trip choke, then stalls. So maybe Russ is right and there's a carb issue? There is no leaking/flooding. Distributor, rotor, cap, plugs, wires, ignition coil, voltage regulator all less than 2 years old.
Tried adjusting air mixture and fuel mixture screws for faster idle, no change. Stills stalls on warm idle. Never had a problem with this car before, 8 years it never stalled once. This came up out of nowhere, happened overnight.
The fuel pump usually works or just stops working —No in between - so I do not think your fuel pump is the issue
So very sorry no one will touch your car where you live — hate that - that’s nuts in motor city to boot
if your carb does not have an idle adjustment screw as Russ ( who knows better than me ) says I would not be making any carb adjustments unless you have the correct tools ( instruments ) to be making the adjustments ( a Dwell meter - with expanded Rpm meter ) due to the three adjustments Russ explained
carb adjustment should only be done once after a complete tune up with engine on spec ( last adjustment made )
If you have a point dist —you need to be checking the point wear and timing —which could be the problem here ( tune up every 6,000 miles ) due to how this suddenly happened
worn points and timing out of adjustment —-will do this
if you have a Pertronics ignition replace the dist ( often overlooked due to no point replacement needed ) and check the timing again
I think ——you have to move —so you can keep you great Antique Cadillac running great as good as it should———LOL !
Where are you located ?
I think you should find a fellow 63-64 Cadillac owner in your area with good mechanical skills that might be of some help at times with no shops willing to help you where you live
we should have a list of independent fellow Cadillac owners ( and shop owners ) with mechanical skills that would be willing to help others in different locations on this site
I would almost always be checking the points and timing if using the stock dist — when ever any issue comes up with the engine not running correctly —-as more often than not that will correct the problem
A go to first —in many cases for me as this is at the heart of the engines performance and must be correct first before trouble shooting further
Thank Tony, yes I'm back to thinking it's the fuel pump. Nothing else makes sense. I rebuilt the carb 18 months ago (since no shop will touch it) and it has been running beautiful ever since. I also put in new distributor, plugs, wires, coil, etc., at that time. Three days ago I was driving the car across town with zero problems - now suddenly I can't get out of my own garage.
Tomorrow I'll try feeding the carb gas manually, that should settle it one way or the other...will keep everyone posted just for the hell of it.
Pls check your points and timing first —-then go from there with further trouble shooting they need to be right no matter what else is going on
Trust me mechanical fuel pumps just stop working and stop pumping fuel when they break - they do not pump a reduced amount of fuel - just stop working
When a pump diaphragm breaks it will contaminate the crankcase oil with gasoline
You oil will smell like gas if that happens and the oil needs changing ( good to know )
Thanks Tony, that's a good tip, I'll look into it. This afternoon, I tried spraying starting fuel into the carb and turning the engine over - that should have been good for a couple seconds of running, but zero. So fuel doesn't seem to be the issue.
I then put a brand new ignition coil on, no difference. Checked plugs, they're fine. Checked distributor rotor & cap, still new looking. But I've never changed out the points and condenser, so who knows how old those are. Will try that Sunday if I can find a shop with them in stock.
I can usually figure out what's going on but this mystery has me stumped!
As you do not know how much time you have on your points and condenser tends to be strengthening my thoughts that that is your issue
You should experience a nice boost in performance when new points go in and the timing is correct
Do not adjust old worn points but put in new
I use a Borg Warner point and condenser combo ( one unit ) that is very easy to pop in and adjust
Always recheck your timing after you tighten down the dist —for accuracy
Clean and grease your dist weights under the rotor while you are there ( white lithium grease )
White out on the timing marks is a good tip
Thanks Tony I've been reading up on this, don't think I will try it myself. Apparently there is play on how/where the unit is screwed down, has to be spot on within thousands of an inch. There is no way I would be able to get it matched up that precisely.
No repair shops, no clue how to fix this so looks like I'm done. 1963 Cadillac for sale, doesn't run but a great bargain for a mechanic!!!