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13/06/2005 00:19:43   Bart   Hi,

Two months ago I bought a 1979 96 V4 with a 1700cc engine from an old Ford Transit. Driving back the Saab from the seller to my home I got, after 100km, troubles with the cooling system when waiting for a trafficlight. The temperature on the gauge was max. , a lot of steam under the bonnet and it was leaking coolling liquid. I removed the thermostat and drove home. The last two months I don't had any problems with the temperature.

Last week I filled the cooling system with water and a cleaning liquid with which I drove for about 50km. After thath I flushed the cooling system with clean water, fitted a new thermostat and filled the system with new coolant and some protection liquid. Removed air in system via nipple on heater. Everything looked alright at first sight but the next day I found a hose near the waterpump (or maybe the waterpump self) leaking with running engine, which has never occured before cleaning the cooling system and fitting the thermostat. Temperature is ok, warms up fast but doesn't get too hot. Does somebody have any idea what went wrong here? Can the leaking waterpump blow up the headgaskets?

Next problem is starting the engine and smoke from the exhaust. From the beginning the 96 starts perfect when engine is cold, but with warm engine it starts very difficult. With warm engine I have to kick the throttle full and then the engine starts running on 2 cylinders. Playing with the throttle for a while will get all 4 cylinders running and after that the engine runs well. Furthermore, when starting this way a lot of gray-blue smoke comes from the exhaust. Accelerating fast gives the same smoke. Is this normal?

I found the auto-choke house on the Solex TDID carb a little bit lose. Some people I spoke said this is normal?!

Could these issues be related?

Thanks in advance,

13/06/2005 08:10:49   Richard   It will be the water pump and a leaking pump will blow the head gaskets on a v4. To check if it is the gaskets you can get a local garage to test for combustion gases in the expansion bottle.
The issue on the carb is not related to the water problem, but if the settings have moved could cause starting difficulties. There is a set-up mark on the housing, you should be a little clockwise of this. Make sure the clamp is tight on the auto choke.  
13/06/2005 08:28:27   Steve   The warm start up problem could be valve stem oil seals worn. This means once the car has been driven and then stopped, oil from the rocker housing can drip down the valve stems and into the combusion chamber. This oil makes starting difficult and the burns once the cylinders fire.
Over night the oil all drains into the sump so a cold start is better.
I guess it could be valve guides worn also but this is more work to fix.  
13/06/2005 10:18:40   Alistair   Steve - surely if the valve stem seals are so bad as to cause this problem with hot starting, then oil will still drain into the bores but not get past the rings so cold starting would also be affected?  
15/06/2005 08:00:32   Richard   Oil will only cause a problem if it covers the plugs and these can be taken out to check if this is the case.
The HT circuit is also worth checking along with checking the carb is in good condition and set correctly. Also check that the carb manifold bolts are tight and if the gaskets are damp with fuel, air will be getting in.  
15/06/2005 08:15:50   Richard   Sound like you could have a carb flooding problem, where the carb is dripping fuel when the car is stood. You valves will be dripping some oil, but it would need to be a lot to cause a problem. You could replace the seals on the valves with the use of a special valve spring compressor and this may help a bit, but the wear will be in the guides in the head. You would need the heads off and a bronze scroll insert or seperate guides putting in the head, dont go for knurling. The other option is a valve with a big dia stem.  
15/06/2005 20:27:07   Alex   Speaking of carbs, get rid of that dreadful Solex and buy yourself a nice second hand Weber 32/36 DGV with a manual choke. The easiest type to install is a 32/36 DGV-5 but other types with automatic chokes can be adapted. I saw one on Ebay UK that looked quite nice for starters, it may still be running for auction. I have DGV on my Sonett and based on my experience with it I promoted the type a bit on the Dutch Saab bb and managed to convert a few people with badly working Solexes to a Weber. They were all glad they did it. If you want to have real advantage don't forget to replace the standard exhaust by a Simons/Jetex. Only when you can exhale properly you can inhale properly too.  
15/06/2005 20:46:50   Bart   I already installed a Simons exhaust and was thinking on buying a 32/36 DGV Weber carb but was a little bit nervous about playing with the different jets. I don't think you can install just any 32/36 weber without replacing the jets and I'm certainly not a carburator guru. Or am I wrong here?  
15/06/2005 21:47:47   Bart   Alex, thanks for you reply in that engine/gearbox rebuild topc. I'll look out for a nice Weber 32/36 with manual choke.

About the oil thing: I took out the plugs to check their condition. The plugs of cyl. 3 and 4 are covered with a hard black looking deposit. The plugs of cyl. 1 and 2 are also covered with a hard black looking deposit but have also some oil on it, mainly around the spacer at the bottom of the bolt. I think this comes from the outside as the left rockerhouse cover gasket slightly leaks, but I'm not sure.  
16/06/2005 08:00:07   Richard   Black carbon or soot is from a rich fuel mixture, they should be a light brown. If you have oil on the plugs it will be just that, wet oil. You have checked this before running the engine? If not you will have burnt it all off.
Have a look at the carb. warm the engine up, switch off and remove the filter and have a look down the carb barrels to see if there is any fuel dripping from the carb jets. Your carb might want its float level checking,. or a good clean and rebuild. This is similar to a problem I had with my first Saab with a 34ich on it, it use to drip fuel when stood.  
16/06/2005 08:47:25   Bart   The car has not been running for 4 days when I checked this.  
16/06/2005 12:28:19   Richard   Does the car run fine after the initial start-up problem?  
16/06/2005 13:14:28   Alex   Problem with the Solexes is that spare parts are made of unobtanium and the prices I have seen from professional carb reconditioners for a rebuild job make you want to put the carb in the safe at night. I looked down the barrels of a not so neat Solex after engine shut-down and the fuel flooded from places it shouldn't. The owner changed to a Weber too and is very happy. His car has a 1700 engine and a Simons exhaust and he could notice the difference. Bart, when you look for a Weber try to figure out what engine it came from. Quite often it is mentioned, so you'll know whether it will be over- or under jetted for your 1700 engine.  
16/06/2005 17:19:11   Richard   The Solex is a pain to set-up, I had one that worked fine, but I had drilled jets rather than buying new ones (if ever I could). I reset/rebuilt most of Tom's Solex, but the autochoke is a pain to get just right, I always convert to manual. The Solex does perform, but all the ones set up for the std Saab engine were set for low fuel use and low emissions they dont go any better than a 34ich. Bigger chokes and jets required! Must agree the Weber has the service back up!  
17/06/2005 14:47:54   Bart   Richard, the car starts fine when engine is cold and starts difficult when engine is warm.

If the engine runs, it runs acceptable although in the mid-range revs the power is a little bit low. Pushing it thru the mid revs, it becomes more powerful.  
17/06/2005 20:51:43   John Wood   I recollect my old master's words. he say "When all else is good check carbuettor".
Good cold starting and poor warm starting has usually pointed to an electrical problem, usually coil. Check these first. Then when you know the electrics are spot on put a Colortune on and that will tell you if the carb's playing up.  
17/06/2005 23:27:32   Senor Burt   Condensor I would have thought. Assuming it's not got electronic ignition.  
20/06/2005 21:13:16   Bart   I can get a Weber 32/36 DGAV in good condition for a reasonable price. It's coming from a MG with 1800cc engine so jetting should not be a problem?

In which way can the condensor or coil be the problem? What's the relation with the cold/warm thing?  
21/06/2005 14:21:39   Senor Burt   Without going into too much technical details about the workings of capacitors and transformers, basically if a condensor goes bad, it can work fine when cold and not work when it's warm, causing poor or no running.
Same with the coil if Mr Wood is correct.  
21/06/2005 20:35:42   John Wood   I concur on the condenser. I have had occasions where condensers have failed, for no apparent reason. Though these failures reduced when I used the Tall distributor and relocated the coil next to the heater housing. I cannot be certain whether some coil failures have been due to the position at the side of the alternator, and all the heat from the rally exhaust header. Have certainly experienced situations where bad warm starting, good cold starting has been identified with a coil, and that coil only being a couple of years old. I replaced it with one that was 60 years old and it is still going strong.  
22/06/2005 08:05:31   Richard   You can also get problems with the coil ht cable connection on to the coil. If is arcing it will warm up and build up resistance. Bosch coils are usually quite reliable.
I think you need to go through checking things like timming, ignition circuit, fuel circuit including carb.  
19/07/2005 20:59:13   Bart   Back on the road again! Last weeks I replaced the waterpump, waterpump cover, gaskets, thermostat, all water hoses and both radiator hoses, exchange radiator. I removed the headlight wipers with the whole mechanic and installed a Derale electric fan between grill and radiator.

Got the MOT and passed without any issues.

Cooling is very good and the electric fan isn't even necessary. The only water-problem I have right now is the heating: handle to cold or hot, it doesn't matter, it's always heating....

Poor starting is probably the carb according to garage which did the MOT and some other little things. The Solex TDID is very, very bad according to him. So on this I have two options: buy a good carb at his place which would be an identical Solex or buy the Weber from that MG. According to the stories over here I should go for the Weber...  
19/07/2005 21:30:44   Rens   I've heard you can solve this problem easy by installing a special plate between the carberator and your manifold.
Your engine won't restart cause the fuel is bubbeling inside the carberattor!!!
With this heat resistant plate you wont have this problem...

Im still looking if i can find the source...
I got the link to his page from this forum, it's also about the sonnet and the cruise control and a new carberattor conversion.  
20/07/2005 02:26:39   John   Hot air ventilation with the control lever up or down suggests you have a problem with the thermostatic valve at the base of the heater housing in the engine bay. Check that the cable movement is free and not binding. It might be that you are not shutting it off in the cold position. I have only ever had to replace one once. It was an awkward job. Found it easier to remove comlete housing. That also gives you an opportunity to check the matrix inside and to remove any leaves and dust that tend to accumulate in there.
A very early Competitions Dept tuning guide (1967/8) lists carb choices of Solex PDSI-2 or Weber 40DFI. Jetting settings are also included. I would favour the Weber. Shimming with 5mm bakelite between carb and manifold was advised on pre-Servo braked cars to reduced fuel vaporisation. Likewise shimming the fuel pump was useful. Servo equipped vehicles had to have the spacer adaptor for breathing and servo connection and this plate acted as a cooler.  
20/07/2005 12:36:36   Richard   The auto choke on the solex is hard to set-up correctly. There was a manual conversion made for the solex which make life a lot easier.
As John says check the cables are working on the heater.  
20/07/2005 21:57:13   Alex   A Weber 40DFI is a bit on the overdone side on a standard engine, but if you have tuning aspirations buy one if you see it (there is one on Ebay unless the auction ended already). They are not the cheapest carbs to get as they are pretty scarce. For now go for that MGB-32/36. For that heat insulation plate go to .When you go to the English part of the site you will even find a very interesting item about a Saab 96 that was converted to a Weber 32/36 DG(?)V. There is a photo of that heat insulation plate. If you are lucky they may also have that special Weber conversion kit (or something similar) that enables you without too much trouble to change from an automatich choke to a manually operated version.  

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