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Old 08-22-2007, 12:27 PM   #15
Rivet Master
1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Silverton , Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,101
Step relocation and increasing sputters...

[QUOTE=ArStrm345LE] nice post. I actually would be interested to hear your techique.

Initially, it was really basic...first, I explored new combinations of old epithets. Then, I pulled forward over the stump I had backed over(though not reccomended, this is an effective way to remove old stumps...Kinda like removing a bad tooth when you were a kid). Then, I got out and went to the hot tub. about a week later, I drilled out all the rivet bolts, hammered the braces flat(sorta), took a long bar to the braces coming out of the motor housing, installed bolts, prayed to the Great Aluminum One, and flipped the switch. Nothing happened...till I remembered to turn the chassis battery switch back on. The step is about 3/4 inch out of kilter(gives it that 'homey' look), and checking the bolts is now part of my ever-expanding maintenance routine. I opted for regular bolts, as there are more stumps and other things out there, and I'm almost on a first-name basis with Murphy.
The unit has started to sputter more, so i will be replacing the rear fuel filter, again...someday, I suppose I will have to flush the tank, but for now, replacing the fuel filter is so much easier. I replaced the fuel pump with the spare that came with the unit, then found out it wasn't the pump...anyone with this problem should learn from me that testing the existing fuel pump is an obvious diagnostic tool that doesn't require removal...

Michael & Tracy
1989 345 Motorhome
We live for the moment, 'cause when you get there, it's gone...
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Old 08-22-2007, 03:39 PM   #16
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1969 31' Sovereign
Broken Arrow , Oklahoma
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I may be all wet here but "I think" if you have a Rochester carb. you could have a small fuel filter at the carb where the fuel line attaches. it depends on the carb. and since it has been replaced ???

I would also suspect a vapor lock that would show up in hot weather and a hot engine. I have solved that with a second fuel pump it is difficult to troubleshoot a vapor lock. I had moved the fuel lines around but the problem would come back so on a gut feel a second fule pump fixed it.

I don't remember on the timing but I "think" if you use the bottom mark you need to use the #5 plug.

Another thing is loss of firing to the plugs can give the same symptoms and be caused by the coil, loose wires, electrical module in the dist ect.


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Old 08-22-2007, 05:14 PM   #17
M Hohnstein
1987 34.5' Airstream 345
germantown , Wisconsin
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 12
No way is timing the issue. There is a small filter in the fuel inlet nut that may well be plugged. A 1" tappet wrench and a 5/8" flare fitting wrench are the most logical tools to use to access the filter. This little rascal is frequently overlooked, but is a standard part in the Quadrajet carburator.
If this filter is proved not to be an issue, go after the HEI distributor, don't fool around, get a reman unit from NAPA for the national warrentee.
After 30 years of life on the road with P-30s, Chevy pickups etc. I never leave home with out a spare HEI and plug wire set.
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Old 08-22-2007, 05:28 PM   #18
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Are you guys sure you aren't driving my MOHO by mistake? I haven't been to the storage lot lately. LOL. Let's see here...vapor lock probs on my 1979...still vapor lock problems on the 1989 models...Got to like that engineering! )
I've heard of the double fuel pump fixin' it. A friend w/SOB told me he had heard of people putting clothes pins on the fuel line to dissipate the heat. Makes sense, only if you could use metal clothes pins. I finally got tired of the sputtering, and dying "on the way to somewhere" and insulated my fuel lines w/ foil bubble wrap, added heat sheild, added air duct from front of cowl, replaced fuel filter on carb, replaced fuel filter at rear electric fuel pump, replace Distributor cap...Not sure which one fixed it, but hasn;t done it for 5,000 miles.
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Old 08-28-2007, 12:39 AM   #19
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1972 Argosy 24
1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Heart of Dixie , Alabama
Join Date: Sep 2006
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Originally Posted by M Hohnstein
No way is timing the issue. There is a small filter in the fuel inlet nut that may well be plugged. A 1" tappet wrench and a 5/8" flare fitting wrench are the most logical tools to use to access the filter. This little rascal is frequently overlooked, but is a standard part in the Quadrajet carburator.
Always change this filter same time as rear one.
So cheap <$2
Yes, you need to add a 1" open end wrench to tool box.

Woke mine up big time.
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Old 08-28-2007, 03:40 AM   #20
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1967 26' Overlander
Huntsville , Alabama
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Originally Posted by M Hohnstein
... There is a small filter in the fuel inlet nut that may well be plugged. ...
If performance improves after replacing that particular filter, then part of the problem is weak fuel supply pressure.

That particular filter setup is designed to bypass when clogged. In other words, when the filter gets full of junk, your carb is supplied unfiltered gas.

If it is not bypassing, the last fuel pump in the system should be checked for delivery pressure.

1967 Airstream Overlander International
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Old 09-02-2007, 02:37 PM   #21
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1986 34.5' Airstream 345
Louisville , Kentucky
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Good point. The mechanical pump could be the issue in this case. Also I just recently had an ignition module go all wonkey on me. Worked, didn't work, worked.

Replaces with NAPA Heavy Duty Lifetime Warrantee verison for $30. Well worth it. Also solved my intermittant no start issues I've had for almost six months.
Steven Webster
1986 Airstream 345 Classic Motorhome
AIR 1760
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Old 09-02-2007, 03:31 PM   #22
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San Angelo , Texas
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Originally Posted by ArStrm345LE
2007.08.22 UPDATE: I just got off the phone with the Mechanic and he said they had just re-timed the engine to 4 degrees before TDC. I respectfully mentioned to him that it was my understanding that the proper timing for this motor/moho was 8deg before TDC. He said they knew what they were doing as they have the proper documentation and they are an RV/auto repair shop. Are they correct? Can anyone possibly give me an intelligent response if the timing is indeed 8 before using the timing marks on the bottom of the engine using the 8th cylinder?

P.S. I couldn't seem to find the edit button for my above post to append this one. I apologise in advance for the double posting.
They are indeed correct. The proper timing for a 454 RV motor is 4*BTDC. If you were running a high performance 454 with 10.5:1 compression, you would set your timing at around 10*BTDC. If you find that your motorhome is sluggish, you might want to ask the mechanic to take a look at the timing chain. If the chain isn't as tight as it should be, consider a double roller timing chain. As for the motor running at bit warm (my L-82 350 Vette ran at 210 stock, and that was normal), have the mechanic take a look at the fan clutch. Fan clutches that work make a world of difference. I would also make sure that I had a 4 core radiator. Hope that helps.

1971 Sovereign International - SOLD

2004 F-350 King Ranch

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Old 09-27-2007, 07:50 PM   #23
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1985 34.5' Airstream 345
Frisco , Texas
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 9
Loss of fuel/Power on grade

I have an '85 345 classic that I'm intemately familiar with having rebuilt the engine myself along with a multitude of other mechanicals. I too suffered from the fuel flow problem and had always replaced the mechanical pump when the frustration grew. After 15 years, I finally figured out my demons. The electric pump in the rear near the fuel tank is a very weak push pump which means it cannot pull fuel from the tank. On my rig the fuel pumpl was mounted about 1/2 down from the top of the fuel tank. That meant that for the first 1/2 tank of gas, gravety works as designed and feed the pump. However once the tank is lower than the fuel pump the small electric pump simply losses its effectiveness and when a grade is encountered the fuel flow is almost shut down. To fix the problem I mounted a high quality race pump as low as possible on the frame near the bottom of the tank and surely below the fuel pick up. I've run three tanks through it since the modification and feel confident I could climb everest without a chug.

Hope it helps.

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