Carburetor Rebuild Tip Quicky

When you rebuild a carburetor that hasn’t been used in a long while, the jets are guaranteed to be clogged up. There are tools that you can buy to pick all of the crusty nougat out of the microscopic holes, but I have a different method that works terrific. First, I like to disassemble the entire carb and dunk all of the parts into a bucket of carburetor cleaner. They sell these cleaning buckets at nearly every local auto parts store, and most have trays inside so that you don’t have to fish your hands inside to grab the parts out. Once the carburetor soaks for about a day, I begin attacking all of those clogged up jets and orifices. Now, as I mentioned before, we all could buy the proper tools intended for doing this, but my quicky carburetor rebuild tip is to use steel guitar string. It is filthy-dirty-stinkin’ cheap, somebody you know probably has some that they will give you, and it comes in fairly awesome lengths and sizes. I know absolutely zero about guitars, but I do know that the smallest “normal” guitar string easily cleans out carburetor jets. It is firm enough that it won’t bend if you push it, and flexible enough to go around gentle curves in the carb. The only thing you have to watch out for is getting speared by it. It’s basically the size of a needle, so pushing on the end of it will go right through your skin like it isn’t even there. Like every tool in your tool box, you need to fear it. If you do, it will last forever, and reward you with an awesome running carbureted engine.

Got carburetor rebuild tips, hints, or tricks? Share them with us!

+Jeremy Nutt

3 comments to Carburetor Rebuild Tip Quicky

  • Fairlane500

    What a great idea – thanks for posting! And yes, it will stab you just like a needle if you’re not careful. (Happened to me more times than I’d like to admit through years playing guitar)

    Next time I rebuild a carb, I’m gonna borrow that string off one of my old beater guitars and get to work. BTW, the tiny string is the high “E” string.

  • Johnny

    You can also use piano wire which is a lot stiffer and comes in various sizes as well. I hate to ruin a perfectly good set of guitar strings! Piano strings on the other are perfectly ok, who likes the piano???

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