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Antique Engine Archives All archived posts from 1999 to 2004 when SmokStak was on EnginAds. This is a read-only board.

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Delco Light & Hercules question


this thread has 9 replies and has been viewed 1340 times

 
 
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  #1  
Old 05-31-2000, 08:45:13 PM
Tommy Stojanov
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Default Delco Light & Hercules question

Hi, I'm 13 years old and I own a couple of Delco light plants. I hear that they "burn up" without any batteries on them. How come this happens? I also own a Hercules model F. How come it sometimes hits twice even at a high speed setting when the fuel mixture is "not correct" (I can get it to hit once, don't need help learning how to figure out the mixture)? Thanks.
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  #2  
Old 05-31-2000, 11:05:59 PM
Joe Rappa
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Hi Tommy, I'm no expert, but I have a few educated guesses for you. I own 3 Delcos too. Two of them can be run without being connected to a load. They are able to shut the field current off to the generator and prevent it from charging. The other one need to be connected to a load to prevent it from hurting itself. Delco generators are not able to adjust their charging output. They put out a continuous wattage. As the load increases outout voltage decreases. On the other side of things as the load decreases output voltage rises. Simply stated, the electricity created wants to leave the generator. Voltage increases until it finds a way out. If it leaves any other way than what it is supposed to, the generator gets hurt.

As far as your Hercules firing extra times, it might be possible for the cylinder temp to rise enough for the fuel charge to pre-ignite. I never heard of this happening in a low compression engine though. I automobile engines several things can cause the fuel mixture to self ignite. They are high cylinder temps(from overheating or lean mixtures), too much ignition advance, carbon deposits in the combustion chamber or incomplete or slow combustion. Hope this helps. Joe Rappa
  #3  
Old 05-31-2000, 11:41:30 PM
Carl Mehr
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Tommy...as to the Hercules engine I would take a close look at the govenor. I have found if the govenor fly weights, the governor itself is worn or the springs are weak/too strong the governor will not lock up at the approiate time and the engine will doubble fire. Be sure to look at the spring under the detent arm, is it too strong for the detent to engage? Good luck!
  #4  
Old 06-01-2000, 08:30:17 AM
john w. kline
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Hi Tommy; I have the same problem with a stover engine. When the mixture has been too rich it soots up the spark plug and it will hit twice each time. If I clean the plug the problem is solved. John.
  #5  
Old 06-01-2000, 11:34:04 PM
Rick Taylor
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Tommy, at high engine speeds the detent has less time to engage the notch on the exhaust valve pushrod. I have weakend the spring that pushes the detent out so the governor weights could override it easier on some of my engines or you could put a weaker spring as already mentioned. That'll make her run slower. Also, I try to keep a sharp edge on both detents and a slight angle(approx.10 degrees) to lessen the chance of the detents slipping out. A rounded edge tends to allow them to slip out when its getting close to catch. Hope this makes sense. Later, Rick.


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  #6  
Old 06-02-2000, 09:08:18 PM
Joe Rappa
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Hi Rick, Yours is the second post suggesting governor problems. This ceratinly makes sense, but how do you explain the relationship to fuel mixture? or do you think it is just a coincidence? Just trying to get an education. Joe Rappa
  #7  
Old 06-03-2000, 12:01:20 AM
Rick Taylor
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Joe, I think there are several variables including fuel mixture and governor settings that affect the performance of his engine. Could be that when his engine was running fast that the mixture could have been too rich if he had the same needle valve setting as he had when he was running slow. You must close the needle valve in a certain amount at higher speeds because of the higher air velocity and resulting higher vacuum that will suck more fuel. Even this will change as the engine warms to operating temp. and the mixer absorbs the heat and causes the fuel to atomize better necessitating turning the needle valve in more. Here is another variable: when the fuel level gets low I have to OPEN the needle valve because the engine is trying to suck the fuel higher. And yet another variable. When I'm checking out an engine to buy I always wiggle the intake valve to see if I'm gonna have to put a new guide in the head. I have discovered that a very close slip fit between the intake valve and the guide will prevent a lot of mixture headaches. You don't want to suck air that is supposed to be going through the mixer to go through past the valve guide. Every engine I have bought had a loose fit there and the very first thing I did was to tighten up the clearances there. It's a never ending "battle" to keep 'em running the most efficient; heck just running. When you have 5 different brands and sizes all popping at the same time you have to stay on your toes!! It's still fun though. Hope I answered your question, Joe. Talk to you later, Rick.


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  #8  
Old 06-03-2000, 03:14:55 PM
Joe Rappa
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Hi Rick, Thanks for the explanation. That is an eye opener. I didn't know fuel mixture was such a high maintenence item on a hit and miss engine. Being low compression i thought they'd have a greater tolerance for variations in mixture. I guess not. The more I think about Tommy's engine the more I think it has to be a governor problem. Let's say he did have a carbon problem that would ignite the fuel charge without firing the spark plug. Doesn't the governor hold open the valves when it is over the regulated speed? How would the fuel charge get drawn into the combustion chamber? Even if it did get in there, it would only backfire throught the open valves. I might be wrong here. What do you think? Joe Rappa
  #9  
Old 06-03-2000, 11:08:07 PM
Glenn Karch
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Tommy, You have gotten several good answers on your Herucles question. Those things are rather non-precision so not all of them will act a like no matter what. There are so many factors. What it boils down to is that the first kick must be strong enough to cause enough speed up to to cause the governor to react and cause the detent to engage. Wear and change in spring tensions modify all of these causes and effects. Learn to enjoy double firing rather than fight it too hard.
  #10  
Old 06-04-2000, 08:54:42 AM
Rick Taylor
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Default Re: Delco Light & Hercules question

Joe, all of the variables I mentioned in my previous post wouldn't necessarily apply to a hit-n-miss engine that was going the rated rpm stated on the tag but to an engine that runs so slow that you can count the spokes on TDC just before firing. That is how I tune my engines to run at shows. Folks seem to get a better understanding of the mechanisms when they ask how it works and I can let them do a visual while the engine is running. Sometimes I have to shut the engine down and run it thru by hand to explain it but thats O.K..I enjoy watching their faces as they study the mechanism. You can tell when they understand whats happening when the inquisitively straining brows and parted lips are gradually replaced with a great big smile soon after the HIT and subsequent MISS. Thats half the fun. I would bet the farm that Tommy's engine problem was not red hot carbon that is igniting the fuel in his hit-n-miss. Remember these engines run very slow and they only fire once(or twice!) and suck cool air back into the cyl.10-20 times. I think the red-hot carbon/sparkplug tip pre-ignition problem occurs in high speed engines found in cars and trucks. Your question about the fuel getting in the cyl. when the exhaust valve closes the piston creates a vacuum on the intake stroke and opens the intake valve. By the way,here is a tech tip I discovered to help make your engine run slower: I use a couple of very small wire ties wrapped around 2 coils of my intake valve spring to make it open easier at slow rpm. O.K., I think I have mentioned most every trick I have used to make 'em run SLOOOOW. Does anyone else have any tips in this regard? Oh well, the first cup of coffee is wearing off so I better go get another. Talk to you later, Rick.


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