When theyre running good, theyre hard to beat. When theyre running bad, all you want to do is beat them with a hammer.
With the introduction of the shark-body-style Corvette, Chevrolet also introduced a new carburetor into the Corvette linethe Rochester Quadrajet. This carb was used on the small-blocks and the L36-option 427. The L71 and L68 427s still used three Holley two-barrel carburetors. There were some variations over the years, the most dramatic being in 1981 (earlier for California cars) when the carburetor was computerized to help meet emissions and fuel-mileage standards. Well focus on the 80-and-earlier style. Note that our carburetor now uses an electric choke assembly, as any 77-80 Rochester Quadrajet is able to do, while the pre-77 carbs body will not accept it. If your Quadrajet works OK but just needs to be brightened up, you can surround it with shop rags and spray it with carb cleaner, but our carburetors idle circuit couldnt be adjustedmeaning that the primary circuit was leaking, making a teardown inevitable. Follow along as the Corvette Clinic renews our Rochester.
Install the carburetor and start the engine while checking for any fuel leaks. Chris says that a properly built carb should not require more than 3 ½ turns on either of the idle circuit screws. If it requires more, there is still a problem. Once the idle screws are adjusted and the engine is running properly, let the engine cool overnight and then adjust the choke with a cold engine. With that done and everything operating properly, you can rest assured that your Corvette will be sipping fuel correctly for years to come.