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Tii Long Crank Times After Sitting


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Evening all,


I've searched a couple of times over the last little while and have not come up with anything :(


I've got a 73 tii that has been sitting for about 8 year.  It's been fired up, driven around town a bit last year (everything seemed ok) then has spent all winter and up to now in the garage getting rid of surface rust (just about done, drivers door is all that remains)


Anyway, it seems if it sits for a little time (overnight), it takes about 12 cranks to start.  It's very predictable, always will start, just requires that many cranks.  If I run it, shut it down, then try again, it fires in about 1/2 to 1 crank.  Similar results after about 5 minutes.  I haven't done alot of testing in between the two. (couldn't tell you what it does after sitting for an 1/2 hour, hour, 2, etc)   The cold start valve does work (fuel right away).  The strange thing, when I was testing the cold start, I cranked about twice, realize I forgot something, stopped cranking, did what I needed to (maybe a minute), resumed, and then it started on 2 or 3 cranks.



Thoughts?  I looked through the parts diagrams looking for a check valve, to no avail.  If there is fuel leaking after running, I've missed it.


If anyone has any ideas, let me know, I can run out and check it.





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Sorry, I should have mentioned, I've tried letting the pump work before I try to start and not.   No difference.


I currently drive a VW TDI, so a pause between run and start are kind of normal for me, I even catch my self doing it in my girlfriends petrol Malibu.


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cold start valve testing:  pulled it (found out I don't have all my metric allan wrenches, thanked IKEA for the size of allan head screw they choose for some random piece in the house), took a glass baby food jar, drilled a hole just slightly larger than the valve, stuffed it in, tried to start, remembered I should clamp it (that is what I stopped cranking for), clamped it, placed baby food jar with cold start valve clamped to it on top of the intake so it could be viewed from the cockpit, cranked it over again and observed a nice  even spray.

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As of yet, I haven't investigated ignition.  The short start times after it has been running have steered me away from ignition.


I have replaced the plugs shortly after getting it, gapping them to what ever spec I found at that time (don't remember the exact number).  Timing has been done (2500 rpm after warm up, ball, can't find the ball, clean while running with a small brush and brake clean, found the ball). 


Dwell hasn't been tested as of yet.  Short drives last fall (ignition hasn't been touched since) showed decent power.


What should I look at in the ignition that could help?

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I too have the same issue with my tii... Cold it takes alot of cranking- warm/hot it fires up instantly. 


I checked my cold start injector as well for opening, spray, duration, and closing. Everything seemed normal there.


At one point I cleaned all of my starter connections which marginally helped by giving me a slightly faster crank.


Do you have a stock electric fuel pump? Mine is a newer Bosch (Yes, it too was tested for proper pressure and volume) . I am not sure my new electric fuel pump has the check valve that the OE pump had. My theory is that after the car sits,  the fuel in all of the lines slowly drains lower towards the tank. I need to test that by clamping the line after shutdown.... 


I also have an OE distributor which on the 74tii has vacuum retard for easier starts. I wonder if when the car is cold (not sealed as well with heat expansion and oil) I am not pulling good enough vacuum to retard the timing and thus create an easier start. Once again I need to test this with a vacuum gauge instead of guessing... But like your car, mine always starts in the end so my motivation is low...


In my opinion the easiest fix might be a new more powerful starter... I did notice the biggest improvement when I cleaned the starter connections. When the car has just been driven the battery has a fresh charge which might also explain some of the warm/hot improvement we both experience. 

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Going out to do that now. I will report back.






Reporting back:


East, West, North, and South, no change.

Try tire pressure next.  


Honestly, my tii start is like my golf game.  I have no F#%*ing idea why it starts right up on Wednesday, and drags out on Friday.  Really, as long as it starts, eventually, I'm happy.

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As long as you're following the procedure of letting the pump prime for 10 secs or so prior to engaging the starter, you're good. Sometimes they do take that long, these tiis. However, I will say that when I went to the M3 starter from the original, starting the tii became infinitely more satisfying. It spins faster, and seems to have shortened the starting time considerably. I have to say that this was possibly the best upgrade money I ever spent on this car.



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Mine is facing South.....  :)


Right now mine is still in the garage (awaiting the driver door), so I don't get drives to charge the battery.  BUT, I did throw the charger on it, got it nice an full of excited electrons.  Turns over faster, but I can still 'count' the cranks.  Before when the battery was a little weak (new battery, just low from not fully re-charging it*) it would take the same number of cranks, they would just be a little slower and almost running out of juice at the very end.  Very predictable on the number of cranks, fast or slow.


The strange thing, when I did the testing of the cold start valve (removed from the car), it started pretty quick (that was the two cranks, stop, clamp, try it again.)


I just ran out, un-plugged the cold start valve and it started with less cranks (7 or so).  More important to me, it didn't have the rough running right after the start that usually requires a blip of the throttle to smooth out idle.


BillWilliams, would you be willing to swap your cold start valves and see if the start times follow the valves?


Could be getting somewhere on this with your help.  Ouch, those are spendy ($240 or so after a couple of quick looks), but that part looks like it was used up into the early 90's, so might be able to find a used one.


Thanks all




*I think I might have an alternator from a GM product in it.  Stories from the previous owner of hitting something on the highway in the middle of no where (between Saskatoon and Calgary) which destroyed the alternator and finding something to get him going out there.

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