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Tuesday 6 June 2023

Next Problem

 While I was away on the excellent RogueRunners Nae ORD'inary Tour, the Stylus did some strange things. loosing power on right hand bends, suddenly cutting out under hard acceleration, I could drive around it, but it was irritating.

When I got back to the garage I took off the injection, but all the connections onto it & the coil pack seemed secure, so I reassembled it & started the engine & noticed the fuel gauge was showing none at all where it had been showing 1/4 full. I took the panel out of the boot floor, then the access panel from the top of the tank to look at the gauge sender & whoa! All the POR15 tank sealant I'd sloshed round the tank after finding the small leak had peeled off in sheets & quite a lot of it was wedged in the exit hole.

This was a "disappointing thing". I didn't have the access to clean it all out & while I could get most of it out there would always be some I couldn't see or couldn't reach ready to peel off & block the exit again.

I flushed through the tank as well as I could, cleaned the filter & went for a drive. After 100 yards it was better, after 200 yards, stuttering, after 300 yards it didn't have enough power to move & I had to push it back onto the drive.

This wasn't looking good.

Again I had it all in bits & cleaned it again & reassembled, again I took it round the block, again it was pretty bad after not very far at all.

What to do?

I thought the No.1 problem was that I couldn't clean the inside of the sump that feeds the filter & pump, so the sealant lining it could at any time peel off & block the exit pipe. I opened the hole into the sump to a slot, packed it loosely with cotton fabric & held that in place by drilling both sides of the slot & lacing between the holes with locking wire - that will keep any peeled sealant away from the exit.

I also ordered a new fuel filter to be on the safe side.

I re-built it all & took it out - with the same result, fine to begin with, rapidly deteriorating.

I fitted a fuel pressure gauge & that showed very poor pressure, I took the pipe TO the filter off - petrol gushed, I took the pipe FROM the filter off - barely a dribble.

But the thing was, I could never clean the medium size bits out & they were just the right size to get through to the filter & clog it. Then I had a brainwave. If I could attach a gauze over the exit hole, there wouldn't be enough "suck" to hold it there & it would get washed off at the next corner when the fuel moved about. I couldn't rivet it through the tank skin, but I could rivet it between the tank & the exit sump as both are wet areas.

What I needed was a mesh - a stainless mesh - a strainer - a tea strainer!

A quick search of e-bay found this for a few £ & when it arrived I riveted it into the main tank floor.


OK - it works so far, but there's no real reason why it won't carry on working.

The car is actually much much smoother - it was idling at 600 rpm until I adjusted it up a bit so I could hear it.

So fingers crossed a disaster has been averted by a little ingenuity & a kitchen utensil. 

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