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#507234 - October 26th 2011 1:10 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: Reed]
AquilaPimpa Offline
newbie

Registered: October 18th 2011 1:43 am
Posts: 33
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Originally Posted By: Reed
Sorry, I guess my post sounded harsher than I intended it to. I wanted to send a strong message because in the past I have broken many things by blindly charging ahead when I didn't know what I was doing. All I am saying is that you would be better served to stop working on the van until you have a factory service manual and can sit down and read about what it is you are working on.

You are obviously enthusiast and have some experience working on cars, but the things you pointed out are items that are fairly basic on Dodge vans. The Thermoquad is a somewhat complicated carburetor and definitely not something that should be messed with lightly. I am cautioning you because your van seems to be largely intact and in original condition, and I would hate to see you damage something by mistake and regret it later.

I strongly recommend NOT getting a rebuilt thermoquad unless you get it from http://www.thermoquads.com/ You can likely rebuild the Thermoquad yourself if you get a factory service manual, go slow, and follow the directions. Don't just spray downt he outside with carburetor cleaner. You need to remove the carburtor from the vehicle, disassembly it, clean it inside and out, blow out al the internal passages with compressed air, reassemble with all new gaskets, and adjust all the settings before reinstalling the carb on the motor.

You definitely need to get the idle speed down to the stock setting. The exhaust crossover is a passage in the intake manifold that has exhaust gasses routed through it from one head to the other. The purpose of the crossover is to heat up the intake quickly to aid in vaporizing fuel and improve fuel economy and driveability when the motor is cold. The choke on the carburetor is opened partly by a bi-metallic spring mounted in the intake manifold that is heated by the heat form the exhaust gasses. If the exhaust crossover in the intake manifold is clogged (which can happen) fuel economy suffers and emissions go up.

You also need to take the advice posted before and verify all the vacuum hoses are intact and hooked up to the right places. There should be a vacuum diaphragm under the hood and a factory service manual will have vacuum hose routing diagrams.

As far as the OSAC valve is concerned, most people bypass them to improve performance and economy. Since you are in California, you should probably hook it up at least for the emissions inspection, but I would recommend leaving it bypassed for daily driving.

The purpose of the spring you mention is to pull the transmission kickdown linkage forward tight against the throttle stud on the carburetor. If the spring on there doesn't seem to be working, I would first make sure the kickdown linkage is attached to the arm on the transmission, then adjust the kickdown linkage as per the factory service manual, then, if the kickdown linkage still doesn't return forward on its own, replace the spring with one of greater tension. The transmission actually has an internal spring on the valve body that is supposed to return the kickdown linkage forward. The big spring up by the carb is there to take up slop. If the linkage can be pushed back and it stays there, then it is likely either disconnected or there is a problem in the transmission.

As you dive into this project, I will warn you that most remanufactured parts such as carburetors and distributors you purchase from parts stores these days are junk. The assembly line warehouses in China that rebuild these items disassemble them, throw all the parts in a big bin, clean the parts in solvents that strip the factory applied protective coatings off the parts, then reassemble the items with no regard to matching the internal components with the calibration of the carb or distributor. The end result is a part that works poorly at best. whenever possible you should purchased good condition used original parts, new old stock parts, or take the time to find American companies that still take the time to make sure their parts fit and work right.

Another thing to avoid is the temptation to buy "high-performance" items such as the Mopar Performance distributor. Most high-performance items are designed to be used on lightweight rag racing cars. For example, the Mopar Performance distributor comes with very light advance springs that are completely unsuitable for any street driven vehicle, much less a big heavy van. You van will do just fine with regular replacement items.

Ask questions as you go. I promise I won't bite your head off again. i just wanted to make sure you knew how important it is to get a factory service manual for your van and to USE it. I just want you to not make the same mistake I have made. In fact, HERE'S a factory service manual for your van for $34 right now on eBay. It will be the best $34 you will ever spend on your van.

Good luck, and keep us posted.


Reed - I had to take a moment before responding to your post as you gave a lot of information. No worries man, no offense taken on my side. I too have learned lessons the hard way on my other projects. Hopefully, I can do this one justice.

I enjoy working on cars. You are right to point out that I am new to Dodges and that's why I am here and you guys are great - I really appreciate all the responses and help. I have been reading up on the ThermoQuad and you are absolutely right! That is one complicated carburetor. First I have to figure out which version I have as there were different versions made in the same era. I have to do this before I even think of taking it off the engine.

To be honest, I might wait till I get manual before I even mess with the idle. It is driving me nuts as the van is drinking gas fast. That rich mixture is killing me. You are spot on about the cross over, that is what Bob the mechanic said. He also said it was a bit of a pain to work on. I have taken Manifolds off other V8 engines before - so i can do this if I have to... but not right now. Not till I learn some more.

Thanks for the heads up on the OSAC valve. I will definitely need to check the hose routing diagram to reconnect it as it was not connected when I got the van.

Not to worry, I have no plans to add any high performance stuff to the van. With regards to replacement parts - i found a site that claims to have bought up a bunch of older parts from the Original Manufacturers and basically cleaned them up and rebuilt them where needed. They claim to have been in business for over 25 years in the Classic car industry. Before I even venture there.... I need to figure out which ThermoQuad I have. Supposedly, the 318 and 360 engines got the one with the smaller diameter intakes? Since the prior owner claims he changed the carb, I need to figure out which one is on this van.

I am going to have to check on that linkage. I can push it back and it stays. It definitely does not pop back immediately. I hope it is only disconnected.

I will keep everyone updated on my progress. Thanks again!

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#507238 - October 26th 2011 1:17 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: draggnastro]
AquilaPimpa Offline
newbie

Registered: October 18th 2011 1:43 am
Posts: 33
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Originally Posted By: draggnastro
You are far braver than i by even contemplating tearing into an older 4 barrel carb, i do agree with Reed about getting a FSM for it. Unfortunately i can not add much good advice here, since i ve always lived in a place that could care less about emissions. I havent had a catalytic converter on a car or van since high school. so ill just say good luck!


HAH! Trust me, I am not brave at all. I will not be doing this without the FSM I assure you. You are lucky you don't have the emissions thing out there. I don't mind it - saving the world is a good thing right? I just wished they would be more reasonable with it or at least use more common sense.

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#508690 - October 31st 2011 8:24 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: Ram4ever]
AquilaPimpa Offline
newbie

Registered: October 18th 2011 1:43 am
Posts: 33
Loc: San Francisco, CA
First of all, thanks a million for all that information Ram4Ever. Is all that stuff covered in the manual? Or any chance you can email me PDF's ?

I am still digesting it all. I was able to win that Service Manual on ebay, i am eagerly awaiting it's arrival.

Couple of quick things though... After running out of fuel once before, I decided to actually fill the tank and see just how truly had fuel consumption is. HOLY CRAP! Filling up with 36 gallons is A LOTTA MONEY !!!!! Anyway, turns out the fuel gauge works. Who would have thunk it?!?! The prior owner had told me it never rises above empty - well it did with the full tank that much I can tell ya!

Also... today, I decided to at least clean the carb up a bit with fast evaporating MAF Cleaner. I after spraying and cleaning, I noticed the accelerator moved better... it was actually getting a little stuck. I also tinkered a little with the idle adjusters and was actually able to get the Van to idle better of throttle. It occasional died out from too low idle though.

Anyway... I am waiting for the manual before I press on.

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#509784 - November 04th 2011 10:19 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: AquilaPimpa]
AquilaPimpa Offline
newbie

Registered: October 18th 2011 1:43 am
Posts: 33
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Well... I am still waiting for my service manual to get here. In the meantime, i did a little bit of reading on the information you have all given me. I was able to reduce the van's idle and lean out the mixture a bit. I used to work on older VW carbs, so I used that knowledge. It runs better actually. It also idles much better. I was able to figure out the mixture screws / idle speed adjusters, etc.

I did all that and then took the van on an 800 mile roundtrip. I am going to have to be careful not to get a speeding ticket with this thing! 80 MPH comes up too easily on this van. I am actually pretty surprised at the performance. Mileage is still about 11 - 12 MPG, not sure that is normal or not.

The van did the trip flawlessly. I had to catch myself accelerating uphill on the dreaded grapevine. Ambient temp was in the 90's on my way to So.Cal, but no overheating or anything.

I was pretty impressed with the van, I am looking forward to getting it back into shape.

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#511766 - November 14th 2011 8:30 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: AquilaPimpa]
AquilaPimpa Offline
newbie

Registered: October 18th 2011 1:43 am
Posts: 33
Loc: San Francisco, CA
Well.... I received my Good As New Service Manual today for the Van and it was nice to see they separated the difference engines into individual sections. The manual covers the 360 V8 I have in the van... WHOOOO!!!!

Good News - Now I have a better idea of what I need to do.
Bad News - Now I have a better idea of HOW MUCH I need to do... LOL!

It's going to be fun though. I like the van, and it has proven itself to me. Hope to rack up more miles over time. Now to go educate myself!

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#511767 - November 14th 2011 8:42 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: AquilaPimpa]
newkirkinc1 Offline
Old Timer

Registered: February 10th 2002 12:00 pm
Posts: 20532
Loc: Pittsburgh,Pa USA
Well i hope it helps you out. Its good to have a manuel!
_________________________
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Three river vans
1981 Chevy-the Love Shack
1999 Chevy Van
2012 Chevy Van
vanninvanner@comcast.net



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#511885 - November 15th 2011 12:57 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: AquilaPimpa]
Superbeast Offline

Madman!


Registered: October 25th 2001 12:00 pm
Posts: 28121
Loc: Dayton, New Jersey, U.S.A.
That's it, just keep it fun and it'll all work out fine!
_________________________
Ken Schwarz
Tricky Truckers, N.J.
Van Clan Plus One, Canada
Manse Vans, Finland
Rebel Vanners, N.J. "USA"
Toopa Sinner Tribe, N.C.

www.showvans.com

http://www.cardomain.com/ride/360991



"Coolness ALWAYS trumps comfort"

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#511892 - November 15th 2011 1:28 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: AquilaPimpa]
Wizard78 Offline
Supreme Master

Registered: August 20th 2008 10:14 pm
Posts: 17143
Loc: Virginia
Originally Posted By: AquilaPimpa
Well.... I received my Good As New Service Manual today for the Van and it was nice to see they separated the difference engines into individual sections. The manual covers the 360 V8 I have in the van... WHOOOO!!!!

Good News - Now I have a better idea of what I need to do.
Bad News - Now I have a better idea of HOW MUCH I need to do... LOL!

It's going to be fun though. I like the van, and it has proven itself to me. Hope to rack up more miles over time. Now to go educate myself!


Very Cool, Have Fun
_________________________
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Never Stop Vannin'


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#511911 - November 15th 2011 2:24 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: Wizard78]
Galaxy Offline
carpal tunnel

Registered: July 08th 2008 11:49 am
Posts: 9414
Loc: New Jersey
yeah Knowing is half the battle. grin
Good luck my man.
_________________________
Loonie Toon Truckers
New Jersey Chapter



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#511913 - November 15th 2011 2:29 pm Re: La Pimpa - 1978 Dodge B200 Street Van [Re: Galaxy]
HighwayStar Offline
Maniac

Registered: June 11th 2010 9:39 am
Posts: 11933
Loc: Burton, Ohio "Cleveland suburb...
Originally Posted By: GALAXY
yeah Knowing is half the battle. grin
Good luck my man.


..... yeah
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Member: Nova Vans
http://novavans.webs.com
Member: Shenandoah Valley Vans


............" REALITY IS JUST AN ELABORATE ILLUSION"..................


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