Lotus Elan

Choke or no choke??

PostPost by: thor » Fri Sep 16, 2005 9:37 am

A fantastic clear sunny morning here in Norway today, and the perfect day for the +2 to work.. But with 8 degrees it was a bastard to start. The reason for this being following the "ignition on, two prods on the accelerator then turn the key" start procedure, with no choke as advised here before....

Should I really never use the choke? To save the battery/starter....

:roll:
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PostPost by: Hamish Coutts » Fri Sep 16, 2005 12:16 pm

Thor,

As it gets colder, you should use no more than a couple of prods of the throttle. On a frosty morning I use around 8! :)

If it doesn't fire quickly don't churn it on the starter. That's what kills the battery. Try another couple of prods and try again - it should start. Don't overdo the prodding though or you might flood things, then it won't start at all and you won't get your fun on a sunny morning!

Can't advise on the specific number of prods to use I'm afraid. You'll have to do a bit of trial and error.

My +2 is on Dellortos.

Regards,

Hamish.
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PostPost by: nebogipfel » Fri Sep 16, 2005 4:22 pm

Thor, Although the general rule with Weber/Dellorto carbs is a couple of pumps and away you go, it is not always the case!

I have never owned a twink which has needed choke including my current S4 ..........but I have known cars which do need choke.

My friend has a +2 S130 on Webers and it WILL NOT start without choke however many times he pumps the throttle.

I have to say does it matter? If your car likes a bit of choke, why not use it?
After all Colin thoughtfully provided us with one :)
John

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PostPost by: types26/36 » Fri Sep 16, 2005 4:48 pm

There is no "rule" if a choke should or should not be used, there are to many veriable's, all cars and situations are different. Its up to you to find the best procedure for your car and even this will change with the seasons.
My Sprint needs choke to rev up (when cold) it will start with no choke but runs rough for a few minutes even though it has jets much bigger then standard.
The Europa (just sold it) which had same engine with standard jets ran from cold with no choke and was smooth. Its a case of "trial and error"
try just a little choke with a couple of pumps.......and then try..........and then try.........
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PostPost by: thor » Fri Sep 16, 2005 4:48 pm

ah yes.
No, the car is in such brilliant nick, that this morning was an exception, but with 7-8degrees C who could could blame the poor Elan.... covered but in a carport-ish garage, and not started since last saturday.... It's been perfectly happy the rest of the day.. So I'll persevere and not have to worry about sooting the plugs.......Soon being wrapped up for the season, alas.

:(
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PostPost by: Petter Hval » Fri Sep 16, 2005 8:22 pm

Thor call me on phone 61330015

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PostPost by: elansprint » Sat Sep 17, 2005 7:55 am

Thor you are probably have more of a problem due to the cold as the terminal voltage of of lead acid decreases the cooler they get & reduces cranking speed. My sprint starts with the prod method but usually starts on a couple of cylinders before all spark up. Maybe worth fitting a thicker cable to starter motor to reduce the volt drop as original cable is not that thick & there is along run from the boot. Also use a battery conditioner if possible or if no power available a solar powered one. They are always more difficult to start here in winter but glad to see there is somewhere colder than England

regards

ian
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PostPost by: thor » Sat Sep 17, 2005 8:39 am

must have been that it's not been started for a week. This morning, 7degreesC (VERY cold for september), two prods, left the foot halfway down, turned the key, and VROOM straight away. Obviously the lumenition is a godsend, and I'd NEVER go back to points again, actually I've never had a classic without. GT6 with Aldon Ignitor followed by a TR4A with Magnetronic, and now finally no more Triumphs, but this with Lumenition.

Why anyone would not change the points for this is a complete mystery to me...
:-)
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PostPost by: 1964 S1 » Sun Sep 18, 2005 2:36 am

My +2 with Strombergs acts in a similar way. When I use it day to day, click starter, vroom, if it sits for a week, crank crank crank. Choke or no choke. Sometimes I use a squirt of starter fluid and it instantly catches. Does the fuel run away from the engine and back to the tank? Maybe it's due to the +2 fuel evaporative system design. Does pumping the gas pedal really help? With webers, strombergs, dellortoes, even SU's ?
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PostPost by: elansprint » Sun Sep 18, 2005 9:28 am

pumping the throttle will not work on stromberg elans (or SU carbs for that matter) they have no accelerator pumps. Interestingly on an Elite with the latter 907 engine Peter Day advised they should always be started on choke & not pumped as being belt driven they could jump a tooth on the belt if they back fired & it always started first key. Not a problem on twincam of course
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PostPost by: bill308 » Sun Sep 18, 2005 10:40 pm

I always had pretty good luck using the cold starting device on my Weber equipped S2 Elan, especially when it was really cold >0 C. While it is possible to start the engine in these cold conditions without enrichment from the cold starting device, I found I had to continuously tickle the throttle until it warmed up some. With the cold starting device, I was able to run more reliably until it warmed up and I think with this method, less gas seeps into the sump to dilute the oil, but I have no quantitative evidence of this.

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PostPost by: 72plus2 » Tue Sep 20, 2005 12:21 am

1964 61 wrote...
1964 S1 wrote:My +2 with Strombergs acts in a similar way. When I use it day to day, click starter, vroom, if it sits for a week, crank crank crank.


My 72 federal +2 is the same. I have to crank a lot to get it started each weekend after not running it for 5 days.

A knowledgeable mechanic suggested that I replace the fuel pump as it may be siphoning fuel back from the carbs when left unused. I remember starting it once after leaving it all week with the front pointing down hill and it was much easier to start. This week I am gonig to try parking it the same way to prove the fuel is leaving the carbs. Promise to report.

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