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Q&A regarding Engine Start-Up

The following outlines how to start-up an R/C engine in Q&A format. If you have any difficulty with engine start-up, please refer below.

[Engine does not start, or stalls]

Empty fuel tank. Fuel does not reach to carburetor. Fill the tank with glow-engine fuel and push choke button.
Glow plug is broken. Glow plug heater battery is flat. Replace glow plug or glow plug battery with new one. Check if the nichrome wire of glow plug glows red.
Fuel filter, muffler or air cleaner is clogged. Clean them, or replace with new one.
Over-choked (too much fuel in the engine). Detach glow plug and remove fuel from engine. Check if the nichrome wire of glow plug glows red.
Mis-tuned carburetor. Return needle valve and idle adjustment screw to the initial position (standard setting).
Overheating. Allow the engine to cool down. Loosen needle valve 1/8 turn counter-clockwise. Cut holes in body for extra cooling.
Pressure pipe or fuel pipe has come loose. Reconnect the pipe. Also check if pipes are cracked.


: How to use recoil starter?

: Pull recoil starter cord in quick succession (*refer to movie 1). Engine may start after just two pulls of the starter cord (*refer to movie 2).

Movie 1 Download MPEG1 7 sec. (1.9MB)

Movie 2 Download MPEG1 8 sec. (2.2MB)



: Engine is hard to start.

: Pull recoil starter while increasing engine RPM by pulling throttle trigger half way (*refer to movie 3. *Note linkage rod movement.).

Movie 3 Download MPEG1 10 sec. (2.7MB)


: Recoil starter feels heavy.

: This is probably due to "over-choke" caused by pushing choke button too many times. To remove fuel from engine, detach glow plug, place chassis on its side and pull recoil starter several times. Heat glow plug using glow plug heater to remove fuel on the plug. Make sure to wear gloves to avoid getting burnt.

Movie 4 Download  MPEG1 7 sec. (2.1MB)


: How to avoid over-choking?

: Do not push choke button more than 2-3 times. Also, check the fuel pipe if the fuel reaches to the carburetor.

: Glow plug often breaks...

: Overheating will damage the plug. Make sure not to tighten needle valve too much and avoid continuous running on demanding terrain such as grass fields and sand.

: How do I tune the needle valve?

: To avoid overheating, initial position of needle valve is set at rich fuel mixture condition. If tuning carburetor, carefully tighten needle valve 1/8 turn clockwise at a time between each actual running. Do not tighten needle valve more than 1/8 turn at a time. Note not to loosen needle valve more than 2 and 1/2 turns from fully closed position. Begin carburetor tuning with needle valve only (adjust slow needle after you get used to glow-engine R/C cars). When starting engine, increasing throttle trim a few degrees will make engine start-up easier.

: What kind of battery is best for glow plug heaters?

: Always use alkaline battery for Tamiya's Glow Plug Heater (Item 41056). If using a rechargeable battery, make sure to fully charge the battery before using. Also, check deterioration of Ni-Cd battery. Although both can be used, Tamiya recommends using an alkaline battery over a Ni-Cd battery for engine start-up.

: Wheel nuts come loose after running...

: Remove all dirt from wheels and securely tighten nuts using wheel wrench (included with the kit) and screwdriver.

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