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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
my GT is finally on the road, used to run really great but performance has greatly deminished over the last two weeks of driving. idles like s***, spits and sputters.........misses at constant speeds and we wont even say how bad it is when you stick your foot to it. so i guess i am just asking for a general run down on how to set/adjust the carb.........all new igniton stuff and i'm pretty sure the timing is on. i know you'll all say get the weber, but that can't be right now........lack of money and i just want to drive this car as is until the snow flies.........so if anybody can give me the general direction to go in adjusting this damn worthless carb i'd really appreciate it.........
 

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greensmurf20, sounds like the problem I had with my Jeep (still have). Check your intake vac-pressure. Four bolts on my intake loosened up (slowly) and burnt 2 exhaust valves. I was a slow process, I'd say 2-3 weeks and I looked every where else than that.
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
i'll do a compression check to see if thats it, but i dont think so............ ran way too good 60 miles ago
 

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Got a vac guage to hook up to a vacume port? Compression guage won't find a vac-leak. If I remember right, you haven't been driving more than a week or two, so you won't have any burnt valves yet.
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
not carrying enough vacuum...........can't find any leaks though..........replaced most of the rubber vacuum lines already, something i'm going to have to look into also
 

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Mine was hard to find cause it started so slow along a large area, so I didn't have a "whistle". Try a re-tourqe on the head and manifold. I'll be interested in the results as those are the usual spots (especially since you re-housed it). I don't remember if the solex was prone to internal vac-leaks. Maybe rallybob or one of the other "oldtimers" has info on that.
Off to Monday night football.
 

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leaks?

Solex carbs are kind of like a british car. When they work right, they work great, when they're off, they're terrible, and they change from one to the other with only the smallest changes.

That said, it's time to do the traditional super-sneaky vacuum leak test. Obtain a can of starting fluid, add to it the straw from a can of WD-40 or carb cleaner, and start the hunt. Gently, in small bursts, spray the hoses and the base of the carb, the manifold to head seam and the brake booster hose. The usual suspects include the brake booster hose and the base of the carb. There is a thick gasket at the base of the carb that tends to go over time.

One word of caution, though. Go very easy on the bolts and screws associated with the carb. One think Solex carbs are VERY good at doing is warping under too much pressure. Once the base of the carb warps you might as well use it for a shot-put, 'cause that's all it's good for. Tighten the bolts very slowly, like you would do lug nuts, and don't get too carried away.

I would also spend some quality time looking at the fuel system on your car. I got the impression that it hadn't been driven in a while, and the odds are darn good that the re is rust and such clogging-up the fuel system.
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
i thought the culprt was a pluged filter.........changed it and it didint really make a difference, altho the old filter did have a bunch of crud in it. i'll be grabbin a can of brake or carb clean or something by the sounds of it.
 

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Opeler
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GreenSmurf,

Solex adjustment procedure, here you go, straight from my 71 Opel factory service manual... but before you go through resetting the Solex from scratch, I've just been through the same problem as you. My car recently forced me to learn how to do this the right way, as well as what to consider before dumping all the blame on the old Solex. It turned out the sputtering and missing was due to 1. incorrect point gap, and 2. ignition timing way too retarded. First, pull the dist cap and check the gap again (it MUST be .018). If it's .018, and still popping and skipping, loosen the dist hold down bolt and turn it SLIGHTLY counterclockwise to advance timing, clockwise to retard timing. The sputtering is more likely to be ignition spark way off, especially if you said it goes really wacked when you put your foot in it. As the centrifugal advance kicks in just over 1200 rpm, if its too retarded (or too advanced), its gonna get worse with higher rpm. You said you thought the timing was ok- I would not "guess" at that, nor at the point gap! If you are not sure, make sure you check that first before touching the carb.
There's not much to adjust on the Solex, just air idle speed screw (the large screw in the middle of the carb), the fuel mixture screw, (at the base, below the air speed screw), and the throttle stop screw(located to the left of the air and fuel screws, on the accelerator pivot mechanism). You can monkey with them all, but if there's a heavy vacuum leak that you can't locate or fix, and you want to run the car as is, you'll need to basically just enrich the fuel mixture screw to compensate for the extra vacuum being drawn, and advance the timing, so the car at least runs. If you have no vac leaks, here's the service manual procedure (you must have a vacuum gauge to do it this way): warm up engine to operating temp. The manual says leave air cleaner ON, for the rest of this... but is not really necessary if you can't get at the mixture screws otherwise. Hook up a tach. Disconnect the vac line from dist to carb. Install the vac gauge to that same carb vacuum outlet tube. With motor running, close the air idle speed screw completely (turn clockwise to close). It now may be necessary to bump up fuel mixture screw to keep engine running. Next plug the charcoal canister vent tube at rear base of carb. You can now adjust the throttle stop screw while reading the vacuum gauge. Adjust it so that you read 1/16" to 1/2" mercury(1" to 7" of water) on the gauge. Do not touch the throttle stop screw from here on! Now you can adjust the fuel mixture screw to obtain best idle, at 400-600 rpm (this is not the final idle speed you will shoot for, just the speed at this stage). With the motor idling at 400-600 rpm, open the air speed screw (turn left)approx 2 turns, while simultaneously adjusting the fuel mixture screw. These are the 2 screws you will be adjusting to inch toward you final idle speed target: if you car is a 4 speed, you should adjust the 2 screws to obtain final idle speed of 850-900 rpm. As you are adjusting these 2 screws to obtain, say, the 900 rpm final idle speed, the LAST adjustment you should make is to the air idle speed screw, to BACK IT OFF to obtain the target 900 rpm (the last adjustment should not be to the fuel mixture screw). An automatic car should be 800-850 final idle speed. Reconnect the vac line to carb.
Thats it. Problem is most often Solex's have vac leaks at carb base, or elsewhere. The vac line to the pwr brake booster on mine was bad, as was the booster itself, caused a MASSIVE vacuum leak...making it impossible to set the carb using the above procedure. I plugged the line to avoid the leak, so am driving with manual brakes. I drove a GT like this from '79 to '82. Who needs pwr brakes on a 2200 lb car?
For what it's worth, I still have a very small vac leak somewhere, so the only way I can get the car to run smoothly is to run the fuel slightly rich, increase timing a tad, and turn the throttle stop screw to the right very slightly, so that it's idling about 1100 rpm. But it's before the advance kicks in, so it runs pretty well this way.

NineLivesGT
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
NineLivesGT: thanks alot man, exactly what i was trying to find, i do have a vacuum guage and if i have no vacuum leaks, i'll check timing and go do as you say..thanks
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
NineLivesGT: i too learned all about the coil ignition, and how to set it up the right way. i also had a messed up dwell/point gap. dwell was only 5 and should be 50. then once i set the dwell right, threw the timing waaaay out. so reset the timing after that and the car was almost right, used your previous post to reset the solex and runs like it did when i first got it, pulls strong all the way through the RPM range. doesnt miss at a constant engine speed anymore, don't miss at an idel and starts withing 2 revolutions without pumping the carb..........thanks for everybodys input!
 

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Good to hear ya is up and running. It has been a good learning point for the rest of us, something to add to the Crainial Databank.
:)
 

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Opeler
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Sounds like GreenSmurf up and running! Starts on 2 cranks, idles, no more sputtering? fantastic. Glad I could help. Some people in this forum have been of great help to me, just wanted to return the favor with the above post. I hope it helps a few others.

Just by total stupid luck I happened to have stumbled on an original 71 factory Opel service manual at a swap meet. I offered the guy 3 bucks for it, and he said OK. I was totally clueless on this until 2 weeks ago. The procedure is straight from the manual. Anyway, the process works very well to tune a Solex, is a lot cheaper than buying a Weber!

A lot of people seem to trash the Solex and are ripping out points for a Pertronics ignition. At some point, I might have to resign to doing the same, but only if I have no choice. It's pretty cool to have the motor clicking and firing right on, with the original carb and ignition that the Opel came with. I kind of like driving it that way. It's more like driving the car the way it would have run and driven way back when.

I don't need to go 0-100 in 2 seconds, or have a plastic cow-catcher spoiler and wild fender flares. And while I am on my soapbox, the worst thing that can happen to an Opel is to fall into the hands of one of these guys who destroys what it was, and makes it look like every other 4 door Japanese sedan with a fart can muffler and a mural of the Rocketeer with his butt on fire painted on the side. If someone wants to turn granny's 4dr Civic into the Batmobile 2010, that's fine. But leave our Opels alone!!!

Sorry, that's been brewing for a while.
 

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OPEL-LESS!!!
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
i know what you mean when you've been helped so much on the forums and you really want to give something back, and when you finally do........makes you feel like less of a pain in the ass for bothering everybody. and about leaving the Opels the way they are, i do like the minor mods like carbs and wheels but it really does piss me off when they try to clone a already beautifull classic into ricerockets. i already think there are way too many rice burners int he world........there will always be too many until the last one is destroyed. i hate every retarted rice rocket made, we need to keep all of the cars like opels, and mucles cars alive, as these are the only "cars" in the world. if you ask me they stopped making cars in 1973, year the emission standards killed the muscle car, and opel ceased the GT.
 

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This thread got me thinking about two things:

1) Whatever happened to the Batmobile Opel GT that used to be in San Diego? It was for sale on eBay a couple years ago for like $25K I think. It was all decked out kinda like the Batmobile from the TV series. I don't remember the details, but it was definitely interesting.

2) Regarding customizing vs. maintain stock Opels...well, I'm not going to even get into the "riceburner" thing. I don't care for Civics and here in SoCal I see these things all the time. It's not so much that I don't like them, it's just that there's way too many of them and they're all pretty much alike. Anyway, I plan on making my GT into an individual creation that will have much of the original Opel look and internals, but with plenty of modern upgrades. Technology has advanced quite a bit since 1973, and I like the idea of utilizing a bit of that while keeping the original spirit of the car intact. My GT happens to have almost 200K on it, and while it is pretty much stock, it does have some fairly significant mods (more like second-rate hack jobs) that were done before I got it, and it has rust and stuff like that. To me, it's not worth restoring it to original condition, so I choose to make it My Opel. I plan on keeping the 1.9L engine and drivetrain, and most of the appearance. Okay, maybe a 2.4L someday...but still an Opel engine. I do have plans for a Targa top or maybe even a convertible. Who knows? Now if this were in more pristine condition with fewer miles, I'd feel bad about making major mods. Actually, someday I'd like to get my hands on a completely stock GT and maintain that, but for my current GT, I want to create something unique, but still very Opel.

Just my $.02 ;)
 

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Total stock: Solex, points, even 2-can distributor

HEAR, HEAR! I've really come to appreciate a completely stock car lately since acquiring two very low mileage Opels. What's the old saying? . . . When you've got a good thing, don't mess with it . . . or, Don't fix things that aint broke!
 

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you should see this

You guys should see the Kadett in my garage right now. Completely stock, points, coil, Solex, alternator, even old style voltage regulator.

The car has 547,238 miles, and the last log entry showed 19.8mpg when it was parked.

The Solex has a steel ring wrapped around the top of the carb. Turns out after 475,000 miles or so the air filter was vibrating enough that it wore away at the top of the carb and made it too thin for the filter to bolt to it. Strange what you have to do to keep it stock for half a million miles or so.
 

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Re: you should see this

oldopelguy said:
You guys should see the Kadett in my garage right now. Completely stock, points, coil, Solex, alternator, even old style voltage regulator.

The car has 547,238 miles, and the last log entry showed 19.8mpg when it was parked.
Whoa! That's gotta be a record, huh? ;)

Inspired me to start a poll to see what kind of longevity others are getting from their Opels.

http://www.opelgt.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=2482
 

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Opeler
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Hello

I was wondering: Isn't there a good alternative for the Solex carbs on the 1100? Weber, etc.? The biggest problem will be: will those downdraft Webers still fit the 1100 manifold? Does anybody know?

Have a nice day

Joost
 

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PrOpeller
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Jossie,
The one-barrel Webers like the 32 ICB will fit the stock 1.1L manifold. However, I think you will need to rework the linkage system a bit, as some of the mounting points are not the same as the stock Solex 32 PDSI. A few months ago, I was also researching a replacement system for the 1100 dual carburetors. For some more 1-bbl. Weber options, try this link: http://www.piercemanifolds.com/overstock.htm
If you should find a system that works, please report back on jetting, model #'s, etc.
 
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