Author Topic: Just can't make my 301 run correctly  (Read 2379 times)

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Offline Texwanbe

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Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« on: July 24, 2012, 08:15:11 PM »
I know its a 301 and not a 400 so I'm not expecting that kind of performance but I just can't find a happy place with this thing. Before, the computer controlled the carb and distributor and it ran "ok" but always sounded like it was boggy and would never come close to breaking the tires loose. (I had plenty of 305 Chevy motors that would so that is where my thinking is coming from) This thing will never just let loose, rev high and "scream" if that makes sense. Now it has a qjet and vacuum distributor from a 78 301 non-computor car. We messed with the carb and put in rich rods and it seems like its just fine. At least in the drive way anyway. But obviously we just can't can't get the distributor correct because it just falls on its face when you push into the secondaries. Primaries are great, it pulls through, but otherwise its just a boggy pig. Too much advance? not enough? Too retarded? Too something and we just can't figure it out. Oh and with the vacuum advance plugged in, it was advancing Way high so we just didn't use it. Until I can get my 400 in I just want this mutha to run as best as it could. Anyone?
« Last Edit: July 24, 2012, 08:17:17 PM by Texwanbe »

Offline ksirb94

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #1 on: July 24, 2012, 09:33:14 PM »
/ (Dumpster)/
|_________|               <-------- put in there. LOL
1977 T/A being restored

Offline b_hill_86

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #2 on: July 25, 2012, 10:11:46 PM »
There are some guys on here that can probably help you troubleshoot. I, unfortunately, am not one of those as I'm still learning about my 400 and know squat about a 301. However, you might wanna try 301garage.com . Or get ahold of jjr on this site.
-Brian-

1977 Trans Am 400 4 speed hardtop

Offline jjr

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2012, 11:57:00 AM »

 First the 301 has plenty of power, but without the turbo, won't do quite as well
as the 400.

 The bog you speak of isn't due to it being a 301, but more likely carb related. I would
bet money that if you put that carb and dizzy on a 400 you'd still have a bog.

 Is there anyway you can get me some pics of the carb so I can get an impression
of general condition?

 Joe
1979 10th Aniv 400/4spd
1980 Black SE 301NA
1980 Indy Turbo Pace 301T
1981 Turbo 301T
1981 Black SE 301T
1981 Daytona Pace 301T
www.301garage.com

Offline Texwanbe

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2012, 12:31:20 PM »
Joe,

Sorry, haven't forgotten. I'll send pics of the carb with all the vacuum lines in and out of it. My issues could very well have something to do with them. Example; I have 2 from the intake sensor up front and when I pulled one, car stalled before I could even put my finger over it. That would tell me there could be one very vital to how it runs. Also, I could sit there and wale on the throttle in park all the way into the secondaries and it revs great, but put it in gear and it's bogg city.

Offline Texwanbe

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2012, 08:10:53 PM »
Joe, can't seem to zip the pic small enough. Up front two soft and one hard line go to the vapor canaster. Two lines go to that blue sensor thing next to the water neck. One of those with a check valve goes towards the base, the other towards the top. Another towards the base goes to the EGR

In the back there's that vac manifold out of the base. One line goes to the MAP sensor. One goes to the firewall, one goes to the tranny, one goes to the air cleaner.

Offline ponchonutty

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2012, 10:06:08 PM »
One thing I want to add is back in high school I bought a bone stock '80 TA with the non-turbo'd motor.  It ran great for the most part but man was it a dog.  No matter what I did to it, it would never break the tires loose.  You made a remark comparing this 301 to a 305, totally different animals.  Also, if the 305's were matted to an over drive tranny again that'll make things different.  My dad's '86 Monte Carlo SS with the 305 would easily break the tires loose in 1st gear even though it had no top end to speak of.  The tranny it was bolted to had a real steep first gear (again, this was all stock too).

So, this being said the regular 301 isn't anything in the performance area.  It's a good, solid motor but that's about it.  You can liven it up a bit with a better cam and some other minor things but that's about it.  Don't expect it to roast the tires.  Many people think that even though the overall HP between the 301 and say the 403 wasn't much, torque from the 403 made up the difference.
Rich enough to own a TA, too poor to keep'm all ;)
1980 TA (1st car)
1989 Formula
1976 400 4sp
1976 400 auto
1978 WS6/W72 4sp
1970 455 4sp Formula clone
1980 Indy Pace TA

Offline jjr

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2012, 08:21:46 PM »

 1980 was the first of the EPA's tough new regs.

 Car makers HAD to tune to emissions and not anything
else really.

 Even the 403 couldn't be made to pass the new regs.

 Joe
1979 10th Aniv 400/4spd
1980 Black SE 301NA
1980 Indy Turbo Pace 301T
1981 Turbo 301T
1981 Black SE 301T
1981 Daytona Pace 301T
www.301garage.com

Offline jjr

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2012, 08:23:39 PM »

> I'll send pics of the carb with all the vacuum lines in and out of it.
> My issues could very well have something to do with them.

  Yes, a great place to start.

  Joe
1979 10th Aniv 400/4spd
1980 Black SE 301NA
1980 Indy Turbo Pace 301T
1981 Turbo 301T
1981 Black SE 301T
1981 Daytona Pace 301T
www.301garage.com

Offline Texwanbe

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2012, 10:55:35 AM »
So, this being said the regular 301 isn't anything in the performance area.  It's a good, solid motor but that's about it.  You can liven it up a bit with a better cam and some other minor things but that's about it.  Don't expect it to roast the tires.  Many people think that even though the overall HP between the 301 and say the 403 wasn't much, torque from the 403 made up the difference.

Pouncho, that's just it, it's not stock anymore. I'm running a Comp 252H cam, headers, 2.5" duels, and non-computer Q-Jet from a '78 301 GP. One would think that would add some ponys to it. It's carboration and sooner or later we'll find the trick. Its wants to go, tires are on the brink of coming loose, until the secondaries are needed and that's where the bogg comes in. Like Gleason said.... I'm not given up..... I'M NOT GIVEN UP!!!

Offline jjr

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2012, 11:14:51 AM »
 I never seem to make the point quite right.

 The 1980 packaged car was detuned. Yes, the 301
was not originally designed for performance, but it was
the combination of specs and flat gearing that kept it from
delivering much excitement.

 The 403 wasn't a performance engine by design either,
this was a smooth running V-8 for station wagons and large
sedans. But since it was born in a earlier time, it didn't have
EPA regs to meet. Fuel mileage wasn't a concern either.

 Even the revered 400 (other than the W72 nudge) wasn't
really all performance. By 1979 it had essentially basic exhaust
manifolds and it drew both sides into one pipe and then through
a horrid 200 cfm Converter... then it split again trying to look
like something performance wise was happening.

 So the 400 too was born in an earlier carefree day and made to
pull big heavy cars around.

 Muscle cars were in effect modest midsized sedans with large car
motors installed, gaining performance via less weight.

 Pony cars were below midsized sedans, marketed to the youths of
the day and later gained these same big motors.

 The point is that the 301 was born and used below it's original
design point - because it was all they had. But it met the EPA's
tests.

 Today, it's not right to compare it directly to 400's or 403's because
it was intentionally detuned to pass muster.

 My point is when you retune the 301 to the same carefree levels
that the 400 and 403 lived in, it's a better package than is generally
thought. With turbo charging, the 301's top end design limits fade
away.

 Joe
« Last Edit: August 16, 2012, 03:27:02 PM by jjr »
1979 10th Aniv 400/4spd
1980 Black SE 301NA
1980 Indy Turbo Pace 301T
1981 Turbo 301T
1981 Black SE 301T
1981 Daytona Pace 301T
www.301garage.com

Offline Dinero

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2018, 02:33:50 AM »
so what is the process to Retune a N/A 301?
Desi Dinero

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Offline Aus78Formula

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2018, 02:52:45 AM »
Plus you're comparing 100 extra cubes, regardless of tuning or setup, pointless.

Offline Nexus

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Re: Just can't make my 301 run correctly
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2018, 03:14:51 PM »
Older thread but a good one...hopefully Joe can add some more input or anyone else as far as that goes.

I am in the same contemplation phase...I have two 301's  79 (original to project car {Esprit}), and an 80 (Trans Am). There is 115,000 km's (71457 miles) on the 79...no clue on the TA but I was thinking of putting a 403 into my build. I don't have a 403 but it would suit my overall theme better...I have the 301's and would be cheaper to go that route even with the tweaking to the 301...too many decisions.

so what is the process to Retune a N/A 301?

As mentioned earlier in the post, Joe has some great stuff for 301's over at 301 garage that might help you out a ton

Charlie
1979 Transpit...(T/A Clone) (19 years and counting)