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EH Engine Issue - advice needed :-(

After over 30 years of ownership I have given my EH a treat and reconditioned engine,gearbox, diff, brakes and suspension. All work was done by professionals as my ability is a little limited.
After all that I am left with an issue with the engine.
This is what we did.....
-rebore to 186
-new pistons, bearings etc.
-'stage 1 ' cam whatever that means
-bigger valves with hard seats for unleaded
-original cast headers
-electronic ignition
-Holley 350 on alum manifold

After a little rework the engine was running sweet and strong.

My son lives in Brisbane (I'm South West Victoria) so I sent the car to Brisbane for him to enjoy for a while. Our plan is to have it 6 months each.
First problem was that the trip dislodged 30 years of gunk in the fuel tank. All the crud was trapped by the filter so we changed that.

Then the engine started to misbehave.

It would run and drive fine for about 20 minutes and then die. Wait for about 5 minutes and it would restart. But it would only run for about 5 minutes and die again.
On advice from local mechanic we changed the Ignition Module and the coil.
Still the same.

Haven't been back to mechanic yet but doea anybody have some words of wisdom for me before we do.

Thanks

Grumpy

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When I took my car out of a 12yr retirement and the engine was rebuilt, a similar problem. My fuel tank, old fuel and associated gunk caused the fuel filter to block regularly, symtoms are easy to diagnose, missing, surging, running rough. etc. because the engine is starving for fuel. To cut a long story short, try changing the fuel filter again. Your problem will probably be solved instantly. Be prepared to do this regularly for a period of time though until the gunk eventually clears. (Could take months or longer if not driven a lot).
My car would be lucky to go 50km when i first got it on the road without mucking up.
I went to repco and bout about 5 or 6 filters. As soon as I felt it missing, I'd swap out the filter. Problem solved. In these old girls, Changing a fuel filter is not even a 5 minute job.
Hopefully this will be your problem and the solution is simple and cheap

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did the mechanic wire the electronic dizzy right?
the old holdens have a resistor wire for the old points set up
you need 12 volts to operate the electronic dizzy
i personally don't like 350 holleys i prefer the stromberg 2 barrel carb
could be any number of things causing your problem

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It's probably just dirty fuel as said above.
I assume you have a Commodore distributor for electronic ignition.
When you changed the module, did you the white insulating gel around the module. This is important as it heat insulation for the module and it can play up without it. My father's new VC Commodore was chewing modules monthly until the company mechanics realised it had never had the gel.
You need a full 12 volts for a HEI conversion to work properly. Wiring diagram here: http://holdenpaedia....
You also need the proper spark plugs for HEI in an early red six: Bosch:
WR8DCX+ (1.1mm gap)
or WR8DCy+ (1.5mm)
NGK: BPR5ES-11 (1.1mm)
BPR5ES-15 (1.5mm)
I find our EH is happier with the 1.5mm plugs.
If you have a relay in the wiring for the HEI, have you checked the relay? I've known faulty relays to cut out and then be good for a little while before they cut out again.
As for the Holley. An IDA Weber from an XD - XE Ford is infinitely better on a red six. There are adapters around to put then on a Holley type manifold.
Have you tried adding some fuel stabiliser? It might help until the gunk is gone.
Stage 1 cam is mild, probably something like a 186S.
David

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Old is good.

and it would restart - so that suggests to me it's turning over but won't run? If that's the case you will be able to check if you have spark while it's cranking...so you can eliminate electrical...if you have spark then it's likely fuel...as others have mentioned an old fuel system can wreak havoc...I always run my HR with no less than a 1/4 tank and have fitted an in line filter between the pump and carby to avoid the kind of problems you mention...otherwise you mention to wait awhile..so could it be a heat/vapor/percolation problem? Also you may need to clean the carby out if it's been contaminated..eg flooding from float chamber over filling...

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Andrew

You say it's set up for unleaded.
You aren't putting E10 in it are you? That will destroy any rubber in the fuel system in an old car. Nathan had trouble with his Bluebird just after he bought it. The mechanic rang him up and got up him for putting E10 in it, the fuel lines were rotten from it. Nathan wouldn't use E10 start a BBQ, but there were E10 dockets in it when we bought it.
Also, a lot of "premium" from mostly the independants is actually E10. Check the bowser carefully. If it says Premium 94 or just premium it probably contains 10% ethanol.
David

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Old is good.

Under the "Fuel quality standards act " it is illegal for a supplier to supply a retailer and a retailer to sell fuel that contains ethanol if the supplier invoice or pump does not indicate so. But since when did Aussies show respect for the law :)

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Ok thats interesting, I was always under the impression it could have up to 10% ethanol without the need to tell you.

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Requirement for fuel pump labeling.

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Image icon Screenshot_20200110-123127_Chrome.jpg546.35 KB
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I've seen Premium 95 in big letters on the sign and bowser at an independant, with Contains "10% Ethanol" in 1cm small print under the Premium 95 on the bowser. Can't think which brand it was, but all their garages up here were the same.
David

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Old is good.

Hey Grumpy.. Which filter are you changing? if its the inline one only, check the one on the tank pickup itself, ive had that, where the tank filter was dodgy and clogged up after a while, wait 5 mins for the gunk to settle in the tank, and it would go again until it clogged again. If you have an inline filter you can get away with removing the in tank one, if your not sure, its located on the end of the pickup tube which comes out with the fuel sender unit.

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Unless it's worn out or damaged I wouldn't remove the tank filter (sock) as the bare tube will block up much easier and much worse than the sock. Ask me how I know lol

In saying that there is also a good chance that the original sock has perished and it's the tube itself that's getting blocked.

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Cheers
David

aka hq308belmont

My Archived Shed

Yea fair call, dont remove tank filter if its undamaged, i was talking from my own personal experience when i said to, in which my own filter had turned into a melted gelatinous mess that was blocking the tube, and in any case if you remove the tank filter you also need to remove from the tank whatever was blocking that filter

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And after you have done everything mentioned and its still not resolved..remove the sender unit from the tank. Check that the sock is still complete and NOT stuck hard up against the tube. On my EH it took us days, maybe weeks to work this out. Changed many things only to work out the solder join had deteriorated and the sock would suck up under draw and stop the car from running...and yes would start again after 5 mins...that was a long time ago

good luck

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Sixty Eight

good work isn't cheap...cheap work isn't good

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still seem readily available...where is the solder join you are ref to in the pick up?
https://www.ebay.com...

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Andrew

Well I thought it was a solder join..the strainer was loose and slips up the pipe blocking the end
Have you still not fixed the problem? Just remove the sender and check it..you will see it straight away
cheers

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Sixty Eight

good work isn't cheap...cheap work isn't good

_________
______/|__| \
\--O-------O---Vroom

Thank you to all who replied to our problem. Looks like it was the filter sock in the fuel tank. Got a new one and EH now runs like it should and for a much longer run. Still getting dirty fuel but now carry some spare new ones just in case. I think we will just run the car and change the inline filter if and when required. Also bought a new pick up gauze filter just in case.
Thinking that the fuel will just get cleaner. Will drop and drain the tank if we need to eventually.
thanks again

Grumpy and Mick

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