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Doctor Robert

So... my car caught fire

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Well, more just smoke, really.

So my car has had issues lately, getting harder and harder to start over the past few days. Eventually, it quit altogether. I've suspected the carburetor is to blame, it was just about the only component that wasn't replaced (not including amenities) when it was rebuilt and while my dad and I were stranded, trying to get it to turn over and inspecting the carb, it didn't seem to be doing anything (the choke wasn't opening, not enough gas was getting in).

 

Of course that problem quickly became only the secondary problem when poor little Tomo caught fire. Suddenly nothing happened when the key turned and then smoke came out from above the pedals with a very distinct fried insulation smell. Naturally after that, neither my dad or I were going to touch my car again and we towed Tomo to the mechanic to try and figure out how much damage was done (I'm guessing a lot).

I guess it was a combination of 36 year old wiring, 100 degree (or 37 degree) heat, and cranking the engine too much with an electrical system that wasn't grounding itself properly. I should be fortunate it didn't burn to the ground. It only smoked for about ten seconds.

So... has this ever happened to anyone else? Is this sort of thing common?

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Stupid question but, have you replaced your fuel pump or is it still the original factory one?  This could be the source of poor old Tomo not wanting to start or run.

The extra heat would make whatever fuel being squeezed through into the carby, vapourise.

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The mechanic got back to me and said the electronic ignition fried (I think that's one big difference between OZ 626's and US 626's is that US got electronic ignition). Apparently the fuel pump and carb are still in good stead and they stopped working as the ignition slowly went out in a blaze of smoke over the course of an afternoon.

I'm not sure if the fuel pump is from the factory (it might be)... this is what I get for buying a car with no service documents. DX It does seem to be working just fine (it has a distinctive putter that has sounded the same since I got it). In any case, replacing the fuel pump isn't too much of a job... is it?

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Fuel pump is easy. Just make sure you have a couple of push on fittings for the fuel hose. If it's genuine Mazda, the input and output fittings are formed and non- removable, hence the extra fittings.

You can do your fuel filter at the same time, as they both live on top of a mounting plate, situated under the car, roughly directly below the rear LH passenger seat.

I have never seen electronic ignition start a fire. I have converted 5 of my Mazda's, along the way to Mazda electronic, and never had a problem.

I am genuinely intrigued.

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Underneath the car:

WP_20160709_13_22_45_Pro.jpg

 

What the originals look like:

WP_20160709_13_25_09_Pro.jpg

WP_20160709_13_25_21_Pro.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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On 7/6/2016 at 7:58 PM, Rotated6_2 said:

Fuel pump is easy. Just make sure you have a couple of push on fittings for the fuel hose. If it's genuine Mazda, the input and output fittings are formed and non- removable, hence the extra fittings.

You can do your fuel filter at the same time, as they both live on top of a mounting plate, situated under the car, roughly directly below the rear LH passenger seat.

I have never seen electronic ignition start a fire. I have converted 5 of my Mazda's, along the way to Mazda electronic, and never had a problem.

I am genuinely intrigued.

Well, by fire I mean smoke came out of the dashboard for about ten seconds... fire sounded a little more impressive... *ahem* Anyway...

I guess it was just old, being the factory original. It was on its way out anyway; it was getting harder to start in the weeks before the end. Once it completely died in a gas station and I needed a jump (despite everything else electric working perfectly... especially that awful "eeeeeeeeee"). I guess the combination of heat, being on its last legs, and me cranking it over and over that made it fry itself.

Other than that... I have no idea. Could the electrics not being properly grounded cause something like this?

Thank you for the pictures :biggrin: those'll come in handy sooner or later...

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