Carburetor Rebuild Project – Teardown

I mentioned in a previous post that I planned on completely rebuilding the leaky, out-of-tune remanufactured carburetor on the Tempest.  I found a few spare hours this past weekend and tore into it.  Here’s the Rochester Quadrajet (originally intended for a late-70’s Buick, procured from eBay a few years ago) that I started with:


After a disconnecting a half dozen vacuum lines and the throttle linkage, a few turns of the wrench later I was faced with this:


Those brown stains are the result of a leaking carburetor and oil seeping up through the threads on the intake bolts, something I’m going to remedy later.  I placed the carb on the newly-cleaned workbench and took stock:


Doesn’t look that bad, actually.  Of course, it’s recently been remanufactured and I’ve had it partially apart two or three times since then too, so it shouldn’t look too beat.  I’ve found golf tees make great vacuum hose plugs.  One of the things I need to fix is the fuel line going into the carb:


Somebody replaced the metal line with a rubber hose connecting the fuel pump to a stub of hard line going into the carb inlet, and it kinks a little along the way.  I need to route a new steel line from the pump to the carb.  I started removing the screws that hold the air horn (the top 1/3 of the carb) to the throttle body (the middle third of the carb), including the two that hide down under the choke blades (which can be scary to loosen when the carburetor is still on the engine):


I removed the air horn, pulled out the float, needle and seat, power valve, accelerator pump, and various other springs, check balls, and clips, separated the throttle body from the base plate, and soon my work space looked a lot more cluttered:


There’s a lot of small, strange looking parts, as well a million little passages and holes in the carb body itself.  Thankfully, I’m equipped with the good book:


This (and this one, which I’ve ordered) is generally considered the go-to book for this sort of thing.

With everything torn apart (except the choke linkage, which is insanely complicated and not worth the hassle of disassembling), I broke out the big guns:


I’ve had that bucket of Chem-Dip (“The Good Stuff, Smart Choice!” it says so on the can) for a few years now, which has allowed it to age into an ominous color and even more ominous scent.  It just gets better the longer it sits and the more it gets used, so by now it just about burns the hair out of your nose.  I made sure to put on some gloves before cracking it open, because I’m sure there isn’t enough soap in my house to get the smell off.  I dropped the small metal parts into the little basket in the can and left them to soak for a few days.  The larger parts will get a good scrubbing and a liberal dousing of spray cleaner to get through all the little holes and passages.  Up next, I need to order the correct rebuild kit and get a little education on the right jets and rods to get this thing running right.  Assuming I don’t get addicted to the fumes from the cleaner, that is.


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