Dirty or fouled plugs - full of soot?

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  • southcoasting
    Senior Member
    • Nov 2011
    • 164

    Dirty or fouled plugs - full of soot?

    All,
    So the past couple years since I have been using my rebuilt A4, I have noticed my spark plugs are way too dirty. I thought maybe I was running too rich? I had my rpm set to about 500 which may be the problem? Could I have a bad carb that causes issues with fuel?

    I will be rebuilding my carb this Winter and come Spring commission, I will be sure to set my rpm’s back to 800 minimum and set my fuel mixture to be more precise…any concerns here with how nasty they look though?
    Attached Files
    1971 Tartan 34C Sloop "NOVA LUNA", Rebuilt (2019) Fresh Water Cooled A4 (Bought boat in 2014)
    1968 Tartan 27 Yawl "Destinada", rebuilt Old Lyme freshwater A4 (Sold boat in 2014)
  • Dave Neptune
    Afourian MVP, Professor Emeritus
    • Jan 2007
    • 5099

    #2
    The fowling can be from many things. First check to see that the choke is not stuck and actually opening. Another item to check is the flame arrestor to be sure it is not clogged. Also if the exhaust is really old excessive back pressure can cause fowled plugs along with a "slowly increasing" drop in performance.

    Poor ignition and timing can also contribute. Do you have a strong blue spark?

    Usually problems with the carb are caused by a lack of fuel not to much unless the float is not closing properly or an air jet is plugged up causing an over rich condition.

    The idle speed should have little to do with the fowling. Also the "idle air" adjusting screw only controls the idle and influences the mix to about 1200 RPM's. How many turns out is the screw at? They usually like around the 1 1/2 turns +/- 1/4 turn if all else is OK.

    Dave Neptune

    Comment

    • southcoasting
      Senior Member
      • Nov 2011
      • 164

      #3
      Originally posted by Dave Neptune View Post
      The fowling can be from many things. First check to see that the choke is not stuck and actually opening. Another item to check is the flame arrestor to be sure it is not clogged. Also if the exhaust is really old excessive back pressure can cause fowled plugs along with a "slowly increasing" drop in performance.

      Poor ignition and timing can also contribute. Do you have a strong blue spark?

      Usually problems with the carb are caused by a lack of fuel not to much unless the float is not closing properly or an air jet is plugged up causing an over rich condition.

      The idle speed should have little to do with the fowling. Also the "idle air" adjusting screw only controls the idle and influences the mix to about 1200 RPM's. How many turns out is the screw at? They usually like around the 1 1/2 turns +/- 1/4 turn if all else is OK.

      Dave Neptune
      Thanks for the information Dave. You have always provided valuable feedback and glad to see you still are.

      I will be overhauling my carb this Winter and also checking my timing this coming Spring. I had just installed a new exhaust system so it sure it’s that…my exhaust manifold is a little suspect though…it has a good amount of hot spots…one thing I noticed it gummed up fuel around the top of the carb near the idle jet…
      1971 Tartan 34C Sloop "NOVA LUNA", Rebuilt (2019) Fresh Water Cooled A4 (Bought boat in 2014)
      1968 Tartan 27 Yawl "Destinada", rebuilt Old Lyme freshwater A4 (Sold boat in 2014)

      Comment

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