1949 packard no start issue

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prdjr1
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:15 pm

1949 packard no start issue

Post by prdjr1 » Wed Oct 24, 2018 3:33 pm

This is my bosses car so i only have a small amount of info on it- Lately the car has been hard to start so i have been messing with adjusting the manual choke,No improvement from the adjustments i made to the choke-once the car is running it runs good.Now the car wont start at all-recent parts were installed a few months ago are 6v coil,points at 17 gap,new condensor,spark plugs & wires and dist cap.I just installed a new 6v battery a month ago,there is spark present at the spark plug when cranking-it is getting gas when the throttle is pressed-i pulled the plugs today as they were wet from trying to start the car for so long,so i cleaned them and re-installed with still no start.I checked the firing order and rotor position and they are good-stumped on what to do next...

Howard56
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Joined: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:35 am

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Howard56 » Wed Oct 24, 2018 7:56 pm

Does the engine even try to fire a cylinder or two or just crank away without even the occasional try?

With multiple presses of the accelerator pedal when trying to start it is easy to flood the engine. You might rig up an aux starting switch while you are doing the troubleshooting by paralleling the two wires at the starter switch on the carb with a hand held pushbutton so the accelerator pedal does not need to be used. That should eliminate some of the fouled plug issues. Also flooding and hard to start issues can result if the air cleaner is dirty and clogged.

You mentioned a spark is there but how good a spark. If the starter is dragging or battery is low or cables too small the starter can draw so much current the voltage to the coil is reduced. If the voltage drops much when cranking -- say near to 5v -- the spark will be too weak to jump the gap when under compression. Was the distributor removed for any reason and if so, is there any possibility it could be 180 out.

No idea how often the car was run before the trouble started but one thing several have run into in no start issues is problems with old stale gas. One issue is it is not as volatile so not as easy to fire but a bigger issue has been after running the engine on the old gas and letting it sit overnight the valves stick. Several have come out the next day to start the car and it does not. The valves have varnished up during that short sit with the hot engine and become stuck so no or poor compression. One poster had an engine with valves stuck so hard some valves were bent in trying to remove them.

prdjr1
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:15 pm

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by prdjr1 » Thu Oct 25, 2018 2:26 am

now that you mention it-there is one of those universal battery cable ends on the pos cable - I will start with that today and hopefully thats the problem.

Adam
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Location: lincolnshire, uk

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Adam » Thu Oct 25, 2018 3:39 am

Howard has already covered this, but it is impossible to overstate the importance of cable/terminal cross sectional area with 6V systems. Also, make sure all connections are clean and bright. The slightest voltage drop can cause a slow cranking speed, or worse, no spark at the plugs because the starter draw is causing the coil voltage to drop.

Definitely worth trying a drop of fresh petrol too.
"Do not underestimate the English cousin.....they are not as stupid as they look!" - Signor Altabani in The Italian Job.

Dave Czirr
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Location: New Jersey

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Dave Czirr » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:02 am

The "wet" plugs you mentioned, presumably wet with gasoline, may have just resulted from multiple attempts to start the car. But you might do a very simple test to confirm that it did not result from a failed carburetor needle and seat, or a leaking float. Hold the choke and throttle valves open (and do not "stroke" the throttle linkage during the test!) and crank the engine over for at least 10 seconds, watching for fuel entering the venturi or fuel overflowing the carburetor float bowl. Either of these would indicate either a leaking needle/seat or a leaking (sunken) float.

You mentioned you were adjusting the manual choke; as the car came equipped with an automatic choke, what else has been altered from stock?

prdjr1
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:15 pm

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by prdjr1 » Thu Oct 25, 2018 12:56 pm

so i replaced the battery cable with a 2ga (thickest one i could find ) cable and then pulled the plugs and cleaned and checked the gap and then re-installed them.The car started after cranking for about 20 seconds - so now i have got it to where it starts but it runs a little rough at idle,I can live with that as i'm sure the carb needs to be rebuilt-I will let the new owner handle that.Thanks for the help !

Dave Czirr
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Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Dave Czirr » Thu Oct 25, 2018 1:29 pm

Glad you got it started. 2 gauge cables are marginal at best, you really want 0 gauge, even 00. These are readily available from sources like Brillmans and local welding supply shops can often make them. Let the owner know he should get proper cables if he wants a reliable car.

Howard56
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Joined: Mon Dec 24, 2012 11:35 am

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Howard56 » Thu Oct 25, 2018 1:31 pm

Glad you got the car going but you might suggest to the owner 6v systems like large battery cables. If what he has is the typical modern auto store offerings -- even though rated for 6v -- they are marginal. 0 gauge and clean connections is minimum but 00 gauge cables would serve him much better. That size might need to be ordered from one of the Packard vendors or auto wire reproduction places but will be worth the time and extra cost particularly if the engine or other parts of the electrical is not in top condition.

H.E. PennyPackard
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Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by H.E. PennyPackard » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:23 am

On the topic of cables, I am changing out mine as the next step to a no start issue also after readi threads like these. When I swung through Kanter I got a huge braided strap for the ground cable, I’ll probably use it for now since I’ve got it and I’m not going for accuracy just function, and it’s better and cleaner than what is on the car. But I was wondering if this is correct for a 49 2262 deluxe?

I wouldn’t doubt Kanter, but they were moving facilities the day I was there (my luck) so they didn’t have many things available and that paired with always hearing about cables not straps has me wondering about this.

Dave Czirr
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Location: New Jersey

Re: 1949 packard no start issue

Post by Dave Czirr » Sat Jan 12, 2019 6:31 am

Others will correct me if I'm wrong but I don't believe your car originally used a braided strap for a ground cable.
Many folks have been able to have cables made by local welding supply shops. Or you can buy from folks that specialize in this, Brillmans just as an example.

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