By Bud Osbourne
The reason that engineers recommended the "drive away" warm-up, as opposed to allowing the engine to warm up at idle was that the faster the warm-up, the lower the build up of harmful condensation within the engine and exhaust systems. So, if you are only going to drive a short distance, you (your car's engine, actually) are better off just driving away after a very brief (30 seconds or so) warm-up, thereby allowing the engine to warm up quickly, and minimize the amount of harmful or corrosive condensation build-up, before shutting down. The majority of the engine wear occurs immediately upon start-up, no matter whether you drive right away or sit and warm it up.
Your engine will incur less frictional wear if you let it warm up at idle (at as low an rpm as it will run at) than if you just drive away. However, if you slowly warm it up at idle and then drive only a short distance before shutting down, the condensation formed in the crankcase (which di...
A Newbie Pulls a Carb — and a few other things
By Steve Dempsey, with a lot of help from Ron LaDow and Tom Farnam
I live in south central Missouri where 356 expertise basically doesn't exist. The nearest shop recommended by fellow 356ers is in St. Louis, about 160 miles away. Recently I discovered the top cover gasket on my driver side Zenith 32NDIX carburetor leaking. Since I couldn't just drive over to a shop and drop the car off, I sent an e-mail to 356Talk to find out if I could replace this gasket without removing the carburetor, something I really wasn't confident in my ability to complete successfully. Although I was assured by several on the list that this indeed could be done, the consensus was that the job was easier if I removed the carburetor. I decided to give it a shot, and as it turns out, this job is really something anyone with basic skills (and a little muscle) can handle. No magic!
"Wide" screwdriver or 14 mm socket and lon...
By Bruce Tews
I do not like leaks of any kind, whether they be engine oil, transaxle oil, or gas, and maybe, especially gas. So, my Zenith carbs leaked, and I was not going to tolerate the leaks. Mine no longer leak, and this is how I fixed them.
First, get yourself a mirror. Mirrors are extremely flat. A one foot by one foot mirror panel from Home Depot or Lowe's is perfect. Also get some JB Weld and liquid teflon in a tube. (More on these later). Tape the edges of the mirror to a flat place, maybe the countertop next to your kitchen sink because you need water for the emery cloth which you will use. Then, if you are up to it, take your Zenith sections apart and do what Ron and others suggest, which is, tape a piece of 300 to 400 grit emery cloth on the mirror and resurface the flat sections of the carbs.
Second, follow their other instructions regarding float levels, etc, including not removing the screw within a screw under the middle carb section.
By David Jones
Provided by Phil Planck: Dimensioned drawing of the short fuel line between the filter and pump on 356 pushrod engines prior to late 1955. It will correctly locate the fuel filter so that it can be disassembled on the car, and properly match up to the fuel line. The fittings and ferrules were available at VW dealers when he made his circa 1990. Print size image Printable PDF file. Ken Daugherty gets his steel tubing from NAPA, PN 813-1235 (5/16" x 60"). See his article on Fabricating Weber Fuel Lines
I decided that as most folks do not know how to bend tubing, that instead of doing it the hillbilly way by bending the tubing around various diameters of pipe I would buy some cheap benders and test them out.
The red handled benders were from Advance Auto and cost $10. The longer chrome plated ones are professional tube benders designed for bending stainless steel which is malleable only once: if you don't get it right the tubing is jun...
Text and photos by Nick Warinner, scans courtesy of Ron Domkowski
[Editor: For those seeking to distinguish between the Solex 40 PII and the split-shaft version, here are some very detailed photos with comments by Nick Warinner, and below that scans from the workshop manual, courtesy of Ron Domkowski.]
Split-shaft on the left, solid shaft on the right. Photos below by Nick Warinner
Scans below by Ron Domkowski
Go to article on Solex Split Shaft Carburetor Conversion
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By John Jenkins
The single shaft Solex 40 PII were first used by Porsche in the 1955 1500cc Carrera engines installed in the 356. The 40 PII-4, came with the first Super 90 engines in late 1959. It was chosen because of the increased performance parameters of the Super 90. The 28mm venturi size of the Zenith 32NDIX used on the 1600 Super engines was not large enough to support the extra breathing capacity of the Super 90 engine. The following equation from the Solex Selection and Tuning manual explains why.
d - required diameter of the carb in mm Vh - the capacity of each cylinder in cm^3 n - the peak revolutions in 1000 rpms per minute
for 1, 2, 3, or 4 cylinders:
d = 0.82 x square root of (Vh x n) d = 0.82 x sq rt (400 x 5.5) d = 0.82 x 46.9 d = 38.5 (for 1720 cc engine d becomes 39.9 mm)
There is a simple multiplier, 0.8, to obtain the choke or venturi size. The results is the Solex 40-PII4, viz., 32 mm.
Split Shaft and Single Shaft, Compared
Now lets look at the...
By Tom Farnam
[Editor: it's common for the 356 engine to be difficult to start if it has been sitting for weeks or even several days, as modern gasoline is more volatile (evaporates more easily) than 50's and 60's era gas, resulting in the gas in the carburetor float bowls drying up. One solution is to install an electric fuel pump, but a less expensive solution is described below. See these links for information on electric fuel pump installation in pre-1962 cars (T5 and earlier) and in 1962 and later cars (T6). Another alternative is the Precision Matters "Primer Reservoir".]
If you want a primer pump, there is a very simple way to add one to your 356, without making any modifications which aren't easily reversible. It's only a primer pump, and will not operate your car if your fuel pump quits working, but it take care of the challenge of starting that car after it's been sitting a while. If the car has been sitting long enough to need priming, simply crank a bit ...
By Bob Slayden
When a car sits for a long period of time there is a tendency for fuel to evaporate from the carburetors, which can cause difficulties in starting. An electric fuel pump is one way to eliminate this problem. [Editor: A less expensive approach is a priming bulb. Another alternative is the Precision Matters "Primer Reservoir".].
Here are detailed instructions for installing an electric fuel pump in a 1962 or later 356 (For pre-1962 cars see this article). In this installation, the fuel pump is not intended to be used full time, so no pressure regulator is needed. Installation can be done in a couple of hours and is well worth the effort.
Installation in a T6 Car Placement of pump and wiring, view from wheel well Placement of fuel lines Pump placement, view from below Fuel line routing looking forward from wheel well Button before mounting under dash
JC Whitney Item #73ZX0906P-6v or #73ZX2807Y-12v[Ed: no longer available from th...
Three different installations by Barry Lee Brisco, Leo Hudson and Jim Neil
Here are three approaches to installing an electric fuel pump in a pre-1962 car (1962 and later cars see this article). In each case, the pump is located behind the floorboards so it is completely hidden yet close to the ignition for easy wiring. The pump is used as an aid in starting the car when it's been sitting for days and the fuel has evaporated from the carburetor float bowls (modern gasoline evaporates more easily that it did in the 50's), in case of vapor lock on a hot day, or as an emergency back-up if the mechanical fuel pump fails. A simpler and less expensive alternative is a priming bulb in the engine compartment, but that doesn't provide any back-up capability and doesn't look "period", if that's important to you. Another alternative is the Precision Matters "Primer Reservoir".
Barry Lee Brisco: I elected to mount a Pierburg electric fuel pump in the center area behind the flo...