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Mike S.
Mike S., Chevy Mechanic
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 7368
Experience:  ASE Certified Master Technician
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I have a 1986 Chevy Corvette, it will start for about 5

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i have a 1986 Chevy Corvette, it will start for about 5 seconds and then it will die. It can not maintain idle. I have checked the timing by putting it on TDC and readjusting the distributor. no codes present. Although it did have a code 42 before installing a new distributor.

Hi, I am Mike, welcome. I'm reviewing your question.

Do you have to disconnect something in order to set the ignition timing and if so was it unhooked? Is that what gave you that code 42?

Is everything hooked back up now?

Was the rotor off the very first time you looked at it after setting the engine at tdc? If so, perhaps your timing chain jumped.

Does the engine spi a white mist back out the intake manifold when trying to start or for those few seconds it does run?

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I did disconnect the tan/black wire to set the timing. I also reconnected it now. The rotor was right, but I installed a new distributor. It does make a popping noise coming from the intake area (I think it is the flaps from the intake tube). It has the intake tune on so I don't see any white mist out the intake. I will remove it and try it in the morning.


Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I have removed the air tubing from the front of the radiator to the mass air flow sensor. When I try starting it, it will pop and I do notice a white puff of smoke at times coming from the mass air flow. It seems like it wants to back fire. After it warms up it will stop popping.

Ok it sounds like the fuel mixture is too lean. A too lean fuel mixture will cause backfiring back out through the intake. Check for air leaks after that mass air flow sensor.

Check the fuel pressure also, it should be 34-47 psi.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I have replaced the fuel pump, but i will check the fuel pressure again, to be sure it is at the correct specs.

Ok, cause if not, you might have a faulty regulator.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
wow a faulty regulator, from it making that popping sounds from the intake?

A faulty fuel pressure regulator could cause low fuel pressure and also a too lean fuel mixture, so yes a faulty regulator could be causing the popping.

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Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I am still looking into this vehicle, it does have a few vacuum leaks i am repairing at this time. Once this is completed I will follow up on this thread. Thank you.