cleaning painting holley carburetor

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Aug 12, 2002
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have a 20 year old holley 4160 carb off the boat. the florida humidity has taken it's toll and the linkages on it are rusty and the body itself has that white powdery stuff on it. I just got done tanking everything and have it clean, but the body and especially the throat still have a lot of white oxidation that isn't easy to scrape off. for the most part i can't reach in there to scrape or sand. looking for ideas how to get that off, and also how to recoat it. for the outside of the body, the airhorn and choke plate and stuff i was thinking of hitting it with self etch primer. not sure what to do about the throats, i don't want to paint in there and end up covering fuel slots and stuff.
 
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If it runs good, then dont worry about the cosmetics of it. If you need the cosmetics of a new carburetor, then buy a new carburetor. 20 years is a good run for a boat carburetor.
 
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Mar 21, 2004
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Originally Posted By: 1 FMF
have a 20 year old holley 4160 carb off the boat. the florida humidity has taken it's toll and the linkages on it are rusty and the body itself has that white powdery stuff on it. I just got done tanking everything and have it clean, but the body and especially the throat still have a lot of white oxidation that isn't easy to scrape off. for the most part i can't reach in there to scrape or sand. looking for ideas how to get that off, and also how to recoat it. for the outside of the body, the airhorn and choke plate and stuff i was thinking of hitting it with self etch primer. not sure what to do about the throats, i don't want to paint in there and end up covering fuel slots and stuff.
Send it to Tredwell Carb in Tredwell NY. They have the knowledge to rebuild your carb which involves more than just cleaning and tossing on a rebuild kit. I have had one for my boat and one for my snowcat done there. Carb rebuilders are becoming a rare item these days,
 

OVERKILL

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Do you need the choke plate? If not you could just swap out the main body for a Proform or some other aftermarket one.
 

1 FMF

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I should've mentioned i do not plan on or want to spend much more than $20 dollars on this. the big problem is the humidity and salt air has eaten away the dichromate finish that came on the carb initially. there was so much flake on the top of body and airhorn that it was clogging the air bleeds next to the boosters. otherwise internally it was clean and nothing was broken or needed replacing, and it's not worth the cost of shipping it anywhere since it doesn't need a rebuild. the only way i would ship it somewhere is if the place could restore the finish of the body and the bowls and within the throat of the carb. anyone know how the dichromate coating was applied initially? is there a substitute for it? i looked at eastwood and it seems what they have isn't much more than paint, it had enough neg. reviews which tells me i need to prep this thing by probably having it media blasted.
 
Joined
Mar 21, 2004
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Upstate NY
Originally Posted By: 1 FMF
I should've mentioned i do not plan on or want to spend much more than $20 dollars on this. the big problem is the humidity and salt air has eaten away the dichromate finish that came on the carb initially. there was so much flake on the top of body and airhorn that it was clogging the air bleeds next to the boosters. otherwise internally it was clean and nothing was broken or needed replacing, and it's not worth the cost of shipping it anywhere since it doesn't need a rebuild. the only way i would ship it somewhere is if the place could restore the finish of the body and the bowls and within the throat of the carb. anyone know how the dichromate coating was applied initially? is there a substitute for it? i looked at eastwood and it seems what they have isn't much more than paint, it had enough neg. reviews which tells me i need to prep this thing by probably having it media blasted.
Call Tredwell, the guy will answer your questions.
 
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Sep 11, 2004
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The white powder/nuggets can sometimes cause problems. If you want the carb clean, a soda blaster is the best solution. The blast media also rinses out with water so there is no residue left. That is the right way to do it. Haven't really found any chemicals that work on really old/oxidized carbs. Phosphoric acid is used to etch the zinc carb bodies, and it does clean them up. Acid is mainly used to clean them up after blasting, and before refinishing. Might try ospho and see if that makes a dent. After it is clean, the coating is up to you. Rechromating them is kind of nasty from a chemical standpoint. Steel linkages, Evaporust and a wire wheel, paint with a good quality paint.
 

1 FMF

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had it glass media blasted. unforunately i didn't take any before pics. here's after.
 
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