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Ford 9N, 2N & 8N Discussion Forum
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Newbie struggling with Ford 8n

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TasCanada

02-08-2018 10:46:32




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Pls bear with me... I'm handy but new to tractors & I know nothing about engines.

I now have 10 acres to deal with so I guess I have to get with the program.
Bought a Ford 8n a few months ago. It was starting and running ok till it got cold and after pushing snow for
about 1/2 hour it died. It sat out in the cold for a few weeks till I finally got it started just enough to drive it
into the garage. Looked fuel related - I used anti-freeze in the tank, burned out the spark plugs and threw hot water on
the engine/oil pan area for it to start. But it would die quickly after starting.
Here's the specs and what I did so far...

Ford 8n with side mount distributor- can't tell what year - the numbers are not readable

12v battery but I don't know what else to look for to know if it was a full conversion

Fuel flow was a problem so I replaced carburetor - the new aftermarket one looks just like the old original (Marvin Schebler?)

Changed the whole sediment bowl assembly - valve was not working well and the filter inside tank was missing.

Put in new Autolite 437 plugs but flooded the engine too many times and in burning out plugs may have messed up the gaps

(will have to get tool to reset)

Cleaned out gas tank

Replaced battery - old one died

While fiddling with fuel line I noticed one distributor lead out - the copper end was missing and only a little

of the wire visible at the end of the lead. Took the cap off and all leads without (you guessed it) marking anything.

Tried sorting out the cable ends - ensured enough wire was out and wrapped it with fine electrical wire before sticking

it back in (have to source new leads). Eventually got the correct placement of the leads (I think) by trial and error.
Tractor now starts but only keeps running on full choke and idles very fast. While running it surges sometimes.
Carb set at 3 full turns in for idle speed, one full turn out for main mixture & 1 full turn out for idle mixture
Despite everything I'm loving this tractor. What should I be looking at doing now?

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TasCanada

02-14-2018 14:21:47




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Just an update - didn't get much time from work in the last few days.

The additive was made by Hall-Chem - "Diesel fuel and gasoline antifreeze" - bottle says it contains methyl alcohol.

I am not able to find Heet around where I live - the parts store guy recommended Sea Foam?
Based on what Bruce said I tried putting on the old carburetor after finding some proper bolts. I had already cleaned it well. The tractor still needs choke to run but the engine is a lot less noisy with the old carb and doesn't surge as much.

I did try spraying around the carb and manifold area with carb cleaner as suggested - the engine continued running at the same speed.

Should mention the tractor came with a gas tank cap that had no seal - so it does not fit on snugly. The hose from the carb outlet is also not in good condition at all.
Any other suggestions? Thanks

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mcharley94

02-09-2018 10:46:38




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see

I questioned this to myself as well. Some call gas treatment "fuel anti freeze" and I'm thinking (hope) that's what the OP was referring to when he recommended it? If it were me I would drain the fuel tank completely, dispose of what comes out, and start fresh with new fuel, flushing the carb afterwards if you did indeed put regular coolant in the gas, TasCanada. And I would be fixing the fuel line and all the seals/fittings before I ever attempted to start it again....otherwise there's a fire just waiting to happen

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TasCanada

02-09-2018 09:57:45




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Thanks for all the replies, guys. I am truly grateful. Will get the Heet as suggested by Dollar Bill and the spark plug gap tool. No, I did not know the spark plug gaps needed setting out of the box - thanks Caryc.
Bruce thanks for the good advice. I checked the screens -all 3 were good. The flow from the carb was also good and steady for several minutes.

I don't have a hand propane torch. Just to clarify, you said I can use carb cleaner or WD40- would I just be spraying one of these on the areas you mentioned and listen to the engine?

The carb that I replaced was falling off the manifold - one of the bolts would not tighten - it just kept turning. Also the bolt at the bottom of the carb was rounded so much that it would not open and it was missing a spring for the choke plate. As for the sediment bowl assembly it was missing the filter screen in the tank and the open/close valve seal was about all gone.

Should mention the tractor came with a gas tank cap that had no seal - so it does not fit on snugly. The hose from the carb outlet is also not in good condition at all.

Last thing - I did get the tractor to start and run/idle without having to hold the choke & without surging after I replaced the carb (albeit for a short while). But then fuel was not flowing from the sediment bowl and that led me to the screen in the gas tank which was missing. After replacing the sediment bowl I noticed the distributor lead and after fiddling with that is when the latest problems surfaced. I don't know if any of this helps but I guess the more information you have the better.

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JMOR

02-09-2018 03:26:59




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Do you folks really think he meant ethylene glycol coolant type anti-freeeze in the gas tank???



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Dollar Bill

02-09-2018 02:43:34




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Quoting Removed, click Modern View to see

First of all, welcome to the family! Glad to have you.

Now on to your dilemma....

Antifreeze is water based - Great for cooling systems not so much for fuel as it will not burn. Might be a good idea to add some Iso-Heet to your tank to help remove any residual antifreeze.



As others advised, needs choke to run indicates lean fuel mixture or vacuum leak.

Best of luck and keep us posted with your progress.

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Caryc

02-08-2018 15:54:42




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
"Put in new Autolite 437 plugs but flooded the engine too many times and in burning out plugs may have messed up the gaps

(will have to get tool to reset)"


You said you put in new plugs but you don't have a tool to reset.
I'm guessing that you mean you don't have a spark plug gap tool.

You should know that with brand new plugs right out of the box, the first thing you do is set the correct gap in them. It sound like you didn't even do that.
I prefer this type of wire gauge for plugs rather than a flat feeler gauge.

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Bruce (VA)

02-08-2018 12:53:46




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
To prevent this sort of difficulty in the future, learning how to troubleshoot the problem would be a good idea, IMHO.

What you have done is replace good working parts in an attempt to fix an undiagnosed problem. Iíve done that and Iím sure others around here have done it too.


You have spent probably $200 plus hours of time & frustration w/o having the slightest clue as to what is causing the latest problem. Worse yet, by replacing that carb, you have probably introduced more problems. The new carb you bought could easily be the cause of it only running on choke. Instead of buying a new carb, checking the fuel screens (tip # 45) would have been a better alternative.

Pulling out the choke gives you a richer mixture. So, you could have either a fuel or spark problem.

A carb out of adjustment will also cause this problem; set the main jet at 1-1/2 turns out & leave it alone.

A dirty carb can cause the problem as well; start by cleaning the fuel screens. (see tips 45 & 56)

Dirty/old gas, or water in the gas can cause this problem.

Restricted fuel flow can cause this problem; remove the bolt at the bottom of the carb & check for flow. The flow should fill a pint jar in under 2 minutes.

On my 1950 frontmount, needing choke to run is the first sign that the points need adjusting/replacing.

A vacuum leak can do the same thing. Get a hand propane torch and carefully spray it (unlit of course) around the intake manifold at the carb to manifold interface & the manifold to block gasket of the tractor while it is running. Or, you can use carb cleaner or WD40. If it speeds up, you found the leak. Sometimes (rarely) manifolds crack or get rust holes.

Lastly, when all else fails, you could have an air leak around the carb metering section. The likely suspects are leaky throttle shaft seals and/or a worn throttle shaft. Or, just a real dirty carb w/ clogged passages.

Bottom line: Probably 90% of "needs choke to run" problems are fuel related, but do not rule out ignition problems, contrary to what others may tell you. Iíve had that very same problem before w/ a rebuilt carb, fresh fuel & good flow & a tight manifold.......and it was a spark problem. But, that was unusual. Just check the likely fuel problems first.

And do not buy a new part for the tractor until you can answer this question: how do I know the part on the tractor is defective?

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TasCanada

02-08-2018 11:59:51




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Thanks... The anti freeze suggestion came from an old farmer who passed by and tried to help me start it out in the cold. I figured he knew what he was talking about... any ideas on what I can try to get the engine running properly?



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Tall T

02-08-2018 11:15:06




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Hot water on an icy block sounds a little dicey, like pouring ice cold water into a seriously overheated block.
Where about in the frozen north? I was born in northern Ontario where it was often 40-50F below zero in December.

Why anti freeze in the gas tank?

Methyl Hydrate will absorb water.

Welcome to the Forum,

terry



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TasCanada

02-08-2018 11:02:48




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Sorry I obviously need to learn the language while learning about the tractor :)

The answers are 1) gas tank, yes dried off the spark plugs with a flame, hot water because it was freezing out (i'm in Canada) - got that from one of the other posts - and it seemed to work :).
The gaps on the plugs don't look all the same anymore.



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Tall T

02-08-2018 10:56:55




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 Re: Newbie struggling with Ford 8n in reply to TasCanada, 02-08-2018 10:46:32  
Some very mysterious but amusing procedures here!

You wrote:

"I used anti-freeze in the tank, burned out the spark plugs and threw hot water on the engine/oil pan area for it to start. But it would die quickly after starting."

What tank??

"burned out the spark plugs" ??

"threw hot water on the engine" ?
Now there's a ritual I've never heard of. :)

"Put in new Autolite 437 plugs but flooded the engine too many times and in burning out plugs may have messed up the gaps

(will have to get tool to reset)"


Oh, I guess you mean "burned OFF" or "dried OFF" the plugs.

That won't change the gaps.

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