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Old 04-23-2011, 10:28 AM   #1
jerrys72nova
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Default 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Please can you help me solve my engine problem? I am at my wits end. I have a 350 Edelbrock crate engine that I installed in 2005, it has around 5000 miles on it. It has MSD 8360 distributor ready to run. Around Christmas I drove the Nova on a trip south. Going down I got stuck on I-95 for about 2 ˝ hours. I ran the gas tank pretty dry waiting to be able to get off the interstate. But she seem to run good. I went to a local car show in January and started having trouble with the thermostat housing leaking and it was starting to run bad. I first replaced the gasket and it still leaked. Then I replaced the chrome housing with a cast iron housing and a new gasket. It still leaked but I forgot to put thread sealant on the bolts. The leaking stopped but the engine was running worse. So I started with the ignition. I replaced the plugs and wires. All MSD and plugs are Champion. Engine did not run any better. I then replaced distributor cap, roter and coil. All MSD. No improvement. I then thought it was a fuel problem. I replaced the in line fuel filter. The carb was getting fuel but still running bad. I started thinking and thought when I went south maybe something got sucked up when I ran low of gas. I dropped the tank found out the sender screen was deteriorated. It had never been replaced. I thought that might be the issue. So I decided to replaced the the tank, the sender, fuel pump and cleaned out the lines. Started her up and still running bad and stalling. I then thought maybe trash had gotten into the carb (Edelbrock 650) so I rebuilt it. Nothing changed still running ruff and stalling. So I replaced it with Edelbrock 600 carb and it was running worse. I checked for vacuume leaks could not find any. I checked for leaks around the manifold none, that I could see. Ad vice I got said it could be the distributor. So I changed the ground and checked the springs in the distributor. Still no change. Instead of having it repaired if needed by MSD, I bought a new one and put it in. Did not change a thing still running just as bad. I was getting tired of part replacing so I took it to John at A+ Auto for more advice. He said he could tell me what the problem was in an hour. (NOT) I never leave my car for anyone to work on but at this point I'm desperate. He said he would call me in an hour or two with what was wrong. (NOT) He ran the basic test and could not find any thing wrong except he said he was 99% sure it could be an internal vacuum leak at the intake manifold. I decided to buy a new Edelbrock Manifold and replace it. I discovered I had used the wrong gaskets in 2005 according to Felpro when I installed the engine. I had used the normal stock #1204. I found out that would not hold up on an aluminum intake and heads. Felpro said to use #1205. I put the manifold on let it sit over night. I put in another new set of plugs. Drove it last night and could barely get it back home. The longer it runs the worse it gets. Every time I use the car it gets worse. It will not run and when it does it has flat spots or like it just stops. Usually always starts back up with lots of throttle. Thanks for any thing you can tell me. I have babied this car for 20 years. I am just sick at this point. Jerry
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Old 04-23-2011, 10:55 AM   #2
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Is your thermostat installed correctly? Is it the right temp thermostat? What kind of choke are you running? Is the manifold gasket blocking the crossover in your manifold for the choke (can't recall the name)? What do the plugs look like? Do a plug reading on all your plugs. Is there good fuel pressure at your carb when you rev the motor? Look in your carb for a good spray pattern at the nozzles. Are the secondary's kicking in too soon?
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:00 AM   #3
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Typically when I hear "runs fine when cold but not when warm" the 1st thing I check is the choke. Is it turning off, adjusted properly, etc.
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:14 AM   #4
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

I would back up and start at square one.
Get a vacuum reading, compression test, plugs clean/black?
Take a look at the valvetrain, are the rockers adjustable?, recheck the dist install - make sure it's on #1, firing order etc...timing, what does it read at idle?
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:27 AM   #5
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Quote:
Originally Posted by ForceFed70 View Post
Typically when I hear "runs fine when cold but not when warm" the 1st thing I check is the choke. Is it turning off, adjusted properly, etc.
^^^^^this^^^^^
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:42 AM   #6
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Is it a solid lifter engine? If so, the first thing I would check would be valve clearance settings. I had an old Harley that did this.
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Old 04-23-2011, 11:42 AM   #7
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Does that Edelbrock motor have a flat tappet(no-roller) cam in it??
It's entirely possible that during the extended idling you probably did while stuck on the interstate you may have lost enough lubrication to the camshaft to start wiping lobes off. Once the lobes start going they go in a hurry, getting worse every time you drive the car.

Do a compression check first, if you find anything funky there do a check on the cam lift before doing too much teardown.
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Old 04-23-2011, 12:12 PM   #8
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Are you losing any coolant, or getting any coolant in your oil?

Small block Chevy's tend to burn the head gasket between the middle cylinders due to the lack of coolant flow between the exhaust ports in the heads. It should show up in a compression or leakdown test though.

I have a video of my rail burning a head gasket as I left the line at night - you can see the sparks and flaming bits of gasket shoot up out of the zoomies, and it ran like crap all the way back to the trailer.
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Old 04-23-2011, 12:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

it be a hell lot easier to read with some paragraphs
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Old 04-23-2011, 12:52 PM   #10
jerrys72nova
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

SORRY! Sometimes you run out of SPACE and I wanted to get it all in. Thanks to all the other help who could read it without paragraphs. I will do a compression check. Thanks.
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Old 04-23-2011, 02:01 PM   #11
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Check for vacuum leaks with a propane tank and hose.If you have a vacuum leak the propane with make the engine run smoother when you get close to the leak. You might see if anyone has a scope and check the firing patterns for problems. A good engine scope should be able to see what is happening. The problem is finding someone that can still use it because they don't work on computer cars. If nothing shows up there pull valve covers and check for rocker arm movement you should be able to measure with a dial indicator the lift of the cam and see if all the intake and all the exhaust are about the same. I had an engine that was doing that and the valve seats had come loose in the heads, had to replace the head.
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:40 PM   #12
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Sounds silly but is the distributer bolt tight? is it possible its out of time?
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Old 04-23-2011, 05:56 PM   #13
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Quote:
Originally Posted by econoaddict View Post
I would back up and start at square one.
Get a vacuum reading, compression test, plugs clean/black?
Take a look at the valvetrain, are the rockers adjustable?, recheck the dist install - make sure it's on #1, firing order etc...timing, what does it read at idle?
What he said.

Check basic engine operation first.

Remember modern oils are not formulated for flat tappet cams. The cams wear out quickly. A good diesel engine oil should be used as well as a break-in additive specific for flat tappet cams.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:37 PM   #14
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

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Originally Posted by Torque1st View Post
...
Remember modern oils are not formulated for flat tappet cams. ...
Huh? Virtually all push-rod engines are (still) flat tappet...

For the OP: if you have access to an exhaust gas analyzer that could provide a vital clue to what's happening.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:41 PM   #15
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Head gasket blown or valvetrain failure of some sort like others have stated. Check for bubbles in your radiator - exhaust leaking into coolant passages indicating a blown head gasket.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:52 PM   #16
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Are you sure it's fuel related, check all grounds and the ignition switch
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:56 PM   #17
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

I had a Ford years ago with the simular problem. When the engine got to running temperature the engine would die, like you would just turn the key off. A couple of minutes later it would restart and die again when go to running temperature.

I replaced everything. Took three(3) carbs before the problem was gone. Internal vacuum leak in the carb.

Good luck.
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:03 PM   #18
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

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Originally Posted by nehog View Post
Huh? Virtually all push-rod engines are (still) flat tappet...
Not really. Most of them are roller cam.

This is a common problem. The modern oils are missing a lubricant for flat tappet cams due to EPA regs. Check with any of the flat tappet cam manufacturers. They all discovered this problem back 5-10 years ago. It is a bad problem during break-in. Cams failed often. Not so much of a problem for an old cam that is well broken in. The OP's problem could be the common cam wear problem due to the wrong oil being used.
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:06 PM   #19
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Quote:
Originally Posted by j-guenth View Post
I had a Ford years ago with the simular problem. When the engine got to running temperature the engine would die, like you would just turn the key off. A couple of minutes later it would restart and die again when go to running temperature.

I replaced everything. Took three(3) carbs before the problem was gone. Internal vacuum leak in the carb.

Good luck.
It is much simpler and far less expensive to figure out what is wrong than just throwing parts at engine.
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Old 04-23-2011, 09:53 PM   #20
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Default Re: 350 Edelbrock crate engine runs rough and stalls after warm

Probably not the case, but no one mentioned the fuel pump. I gather it's pumping OK.
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