At First Glance

“This thing “can’t” be out of gas”

“It must be something else”

“I know I just filled it”

I must have a medical condition which inadvertently makes me run every vehicle I own out of gas, in such a way that upon the mind boggling stall, it’s absolutely preposterous and completely unbelievable that this device could possibly be out of fuel, and consequently I’m lead on a multi-hour sometimes day long chase trying to find the “problem”

This sort of thing has happened to me in one way or another with almost everything I own.  It’s happend on the backhoe, it’s happened on the Kubota 4×4 tractor, I’ve done it to my MG, my truck, lawn mowers, snowmobiles, you name it.  Weed-whackers.

Scenario 1:  Snowmobile season just started, which means we had a dusting of snow on the ground, I mean barely enough to tell it’s snow, it could be confused with a heavy frost.  This means it’s time to get your snowmobile out and “break the trails”.  Otherwise you might not be able to get out again later if it snows more.  It should be called “break your sled”.

Hey, Dave what you up to this afternoon, did you see the “snow”?

Yeah, I did, I’ll be heading out to “break my sled”, you?

Yup, me too!

So anyway, this time, it wouldn’t start.  Darnedest thing, it’s got spark.  But just to be safe, I bought new spark plugs.  (spark could be weak…you know).  Nope, no go.  Primer doesn’t seem to be picking up a whole lot, but it’s kinda hard to tell.  I better tear the airbox off and try starting fluid.  Yup, runs great on starting fluid.  Huh…  Maybe there is something wrong with the fuel pump…  “boy wish I had a can of gas” floated through my head a few times, but I was fresh out, and tearing into something that works perfectly good seemed like more efficient use of my time.

In the end, it was just out of gas.

Scenario 2:  Backhoe.  Wouldn’t start.  Checked the battery, charged it.  Pulled all the spark plugs out and cleaned them.  Pulled the carb off and cleaned it.  Filled it with gas.  Started right up.  Sigh…

Scenario 3:  1967 MGB, stalls, pull over the a pull off.  Call Dad, he tows me to grampas house.  I crawl under and remove the fuel pump.  Bring it inside and start tearing into this fuel pump looking for something wrong (possibly creating problems).  Put it all back together, re-install.  As I’m trying to crank it over I glance over at the fuel guage (which I must say, was rarely ever accurate (lucas electronics)), and the darned thing was on E.  Put a little gas in, and it starts right up.


These aren’t tales of my best moments, but I wanted to share so that perhaps you could avoid this same mistake.

The over all lesson that I’m now learning is try never to overlook the obviously and simple solution to a problem.  Most of the time it can be the fastest to try even if it doesn’t work, it could save you time in the long run.

The Simple Solution
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2 thoughts on “The Simple Solution

  • May 31, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    Really you just need a gas station next to your house. Or at your house! Oo new business idea. You could find all the people who have this problem and delivery them gas at the beginning of each season.

    • June 4, 2011 at 6:51 pm

      I like the way you think! :)


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