Question about 1985 Mazda RX-7

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1985 12A Mazda Rx-7 Starting Problems

Its a 1985 Mazda Rx-7, With a Carberated 12A engine.
The engine seal was replaced just before the car was placed in storage, in 2002.

Alright, to start off this car has been sitting since 02, and ran when it was put into storage. It was up off the ground for about 3 years (on blocks, and in a garage) and then was moved (on a trailer) to my Uncle's house, where it sat in his back yard for the remainder of the time. it has had engine coolant in it the entire time, as well as engine oil (which may have been replaced once during this time)
Also during this time someone has tried to hotwire the car, the bottom plate of the steering column has gone missing... As well as my air filter housing... Which is now replaced.

It has not been driven since 2002.

So far I have replaced a bad fuel pump, I had to run a new power wire to the fuel pump (For some reason the existing wire was no longer recieving voltage.
I have also replaced all of the filters.
I have replaced all of the fluids (except for the Brake and Clutch fluid)
I have replaced the battery.
And will have replaced the spark plugs by tomorrow.

Last week we had a warm day, I had a fully charged battery, as well as having a truck to help jump start the car. The trucks battery put me at about 13-14 volts
The battery I was using at this time was not the battery that I just bought, but did hold 12 volts and was just fully charged the night before.

After about 3 minutes of cranking the car started, but then it died when I let off the gas. Another 2 minutes of cranking and it started back up, I kept it at about 4-5,000 rpms for about 30 seconds, and then let it down to idle, pushed the choke in half way, and it stayed running at an idle. 2 minutes after this i pressed the choke back in all the way and the car continued to idle.

After this I went inside to warm up for about 15 minutes, Came back outside and the car was still running at idle. I got back in and reved it back up to about 5000 rpms and tried to let it return to an idle on its own.
The car died and has not started for me since.
There was very little gas in the tank, and I've been told that fuel pumps don't like being ran out of gas, but I cannot be certain that there was not enough gas in the tank to make the fuel pump 'run dry'

Another thing that I think I should mention is that the car did not simply "start right up" It was more of a buil up, it turns over well and then builds until it starts to run.. and then I released the ignition. And I do know not to continuesly hold the ignition in the start position, it was allowed to rest in between starting atempts from the first time to now.

Anyway, tonight the weather was warmer again, about 45 degrees F and I still have not been able to get it to start again, the gas tank is now about half full as well.

While I was cranking the engine it seemed as if the elctricity just cut out and then instantly returned.
It would be turning over and then everything would just stop for a split second and then start again.
The cranking itself stopped and the dash lights blinked, and then before I have time to react It all comes back on and the cranking started back up. I tried it 3 more times after this and it happened every time.

Sorry to keep rambling on, but I'm not much of a car person...
I have been removing the battery to charge it in the garage, as It's been damn cold the past few days (windchill -22, and has been below freezing for about the past week.)
Today when I put the battery back in I was tightening the positive terminal, my wrench slipped and I got a rather large spark out of it... Pretty sure it was just a discharge, but like I said I'm not a car person, so let me know If any of this sounds particularly bad lol.

It has fired a few times since 02, by pouring gas into the carb. And as I said before started less than 3 weeks ago and ran until I reved it to see if it would return to idle without me manually reving it down slowly.

I'm just not understanding why I can't get it to fire off again, and with the "electrical failure?" today, with the power cutting while I was cranking.

Any help or input would be apprieciated.

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  • Anonymous Dec 28, 2008

    car has been unused for 3 yrs have un flodded it it ran at a fast idle for 5 minutes and then died and now will not fire at all

    any help is really appreciated.


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The RX is a cold blooded beast, and needs to be choked even if it's 90 degrees out. My 85 Rx7 has had similar problems. on one occasion due to power dropping off I had to clean up and replace the positive cable to the starter and fusable link box. Right now it is having an odd problem if I pull out the choke before engaging the starter that the power dies, so I am waiting till the starter is running before pulling out the choke.
Sometimes if the car does not start right away the rotarys tend to foul the plugs. I keep a spare set available and swap them out. Another problem with a rotary that sits a long period is that apex seals will stick in place. Sometimes you can pour atf or brake fluid through the carb into the engine with plugs removed. Spin the engine to spread the fluid well and let it sit for a hour or so. Then spin the engine till most of the fluid is clear. Put plugs back in and start, sometimes ether will help fire it up quicker.

Posted on May 28, 2009

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Check the condition of the amplifier, hold the HT lead approximately 6mm from a suitable earth and crank the engine, see if agood spark occurse, if poor or no spark occurese, change amplifier. first be sure carburator and fuel lne are clean, heat the spark plugs , pour little fuel in carb. start again .

Posted on Jan 17, 2009

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