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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Beautiful day forecast for Michigan today, so got up early and took off for one of my favorite Saturday AM Cars & Coffees. Lingenfelters in Wixom. Beautiful hour drive through lake country and lots of cool cars and conversation. When I backed out of the garage, the engine hesitated for just a second. No big deal but literally has never done that before. Hmmm. Seemed to be running OK, so took off. Couple miles from home, noticed things didn’t seem exactly right. Throttle was a little mushy and when I stopped at a stop sign it didn’t immediately idle back like it usually does. In hindsight, should have turned back for home right then. But of course I didn’t. Seemed to be going OK again, so kept going. Couple miles further at a stoplight it died. It has never done that before either. Welcome to a morning of firsts. Started up but clearly wasn’t running well. Turned into a church driveway. It died again and now I was done. It would start, but then very quickly stop again. Grrr. Called home and warned my wife she was probably going to have to rescue me. Based on the hour, she wasn’t too excited to hear from me.

My first thought was fuel pump. With all the debate during the build about pumps, fuel line sizes, some guys having pumps dying prematurely, that was my first thought. The pressure gauge on the regulator showed 55 psi when the key was on, so seemed OK though. Once my wife arrived and I could get help trying to start it and watching the gauge, I could see it stayed at 55 when it died. So even though that was my first thought, didn’t seem like the culprit. MIL was not illuminated.

After thinking through the various other things that could be wrong, decided really no choice but to have it towed back home where I could troubleshoot it. Was only 5-6 miles away at that point. I have roadside assistance on the insurance, so called the number, answered all their questions, and was promised a flat bed within 90 minutes. First time in my life with any vehicle that I've had to call for a tow. 30 minutes later a standard tow truck shows up. The guy says “I can do it” but I said no you can't. Waited about another hour for the flat bed. Guy was super careful and got it up on the truck and back home without incident.



Once back in the garage, the driver wanted to talk cars a bit and also look at the Coupe under construction. I opened the hood on the Roadster to show him the Coyote (even though I wasn’t too happy with it at the moment) and guess what I saw:


Good grief. The air cleaner and MAF tube assembly was disconnected from the intake. Can’t believe I didn’t see that before. Temporarily pushed it back into place and of course it started right up and ran fine. That would have been an easy roadside repair. But a little late now. Spent another hour or so making a more permanent fix. At least I hope so. Used some 120 grit paper and roughed up both ends of the MAF tube so where it fits into the silicone sleeves there’s something more for it to bite on. The polished aluminum is pretty but also slippery. I made sure all the clamps were good and tight. The shield on the air cleaner adds a little weight, and no doubt may have contributed to the problem. But it's aluminum and not very heavy. The setup should be able to handle it. Also put little red dots at the base of all the connections with my trusty red paint marker. I’ll keep an eye on those witness marks to make sure the tubes stay where they’re supposed to be. If they start slipping again, I’ll think of something more to hold them. I put the scanner on the ODB2 port and confirmed there were no codes. Took a 10 mile or so test drive, and it ran perfectly, like it always has before.

Lessons learned? Add this area to the watch list. Check the clamps occasionally. Pretty sure they haven’t been touched since the car was done. When there’s a breakdown, don’t get so fixated on one thing like I was with the fuel pump that the obvious is missed. Add a winch to my SE trailer. I could have gotten back home myself pretty easily if I had a way to pull it into the trailer. Going to get right on that, and hope I don’t ever have to use it.

My laptop died last night. I guess I should have known today wasn’t going to go well either. Although I'm thankful it was an easy fix. Hopefully failures don’t come in threes.
 

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The nice thing about that kind of failure is you know exactly what it was. Yes hose clamps will need to be re-snugged every once in a while due I think to the rubber relaxing over time.
I also like to put some armor-all under the clamp to allow it to slide over the rubber as it is tightened so there is less chance of a "bunched up" area under the clamp.

Your engine compartment is so clean it is amazing!
 

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On the plus side you have to be happy that it wasn't one of those "head scratchers" that would have kept you up at night until you figured it out (and I know it would have ;)).

Jeff
 

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The best fix is to have a small bead rolled around the end of that tube. Another idea I have seen is to run a series of rivets around the tube about where a bead would be. The slight above the surface protrusion of the rivet heads acts like a bead so the tube won't pull out of the hose as easily. I am glad it was a relatively painless flatbed home and an easy diagnosis.
 

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Good To Hear It Was Simple...

I've used both suggestions from Mark Reynolds and CraigS at various times and agree with them on the fix (except I usually use a #6-32 x 3/16" long Button Head screw threaded into the aluminum, same upset, but less protrusion on the inside, and under the rubber under the clamp they can't come out).

Nice looking car, enjoy it as often as possible.

Regards, Rick.
 

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I would wait for the flat bed.
Totally agree!!:smile2: I've had other sports cars (Nissan 350z) where I've had to call a tow truck - blown radiator hose - and a flat bed is the only way to go.
 

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Been there, done that (twice!)

First was while still in gel coat. Didn't get the cooling system burped properly and we over heated. Second was an assembly error (mine) which became apparent when the left rear shock came apart.

It all comes under the heading of "crap happens."

Ray
 

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Here's mine. On the road 10 years and this is first time I didn't make it home. Broken throttle cable at the pedal 5 miles from my garage in Palm Desert, CA. Easy to diagnose but working in the driver's footbox is no fun.
 

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Had a few "problems" but the only head scratcher that put my Cobra on a flatbed was (this is embarrassing) found to be that the fuel inertia cut off switch was tripped by going too fast over speed bumps! Hard learnt lessons are not forgotten.
 

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Buck
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Well my first ride if shame happened just saturday. I was on the highway when the car just stopped running. Had to get a flatbed back to the house. Turned out ot be broken ground wire on the in-tank fuel pump. With EFI that engine stops in a second, no popping chugging no nothing just silence. Easy fix on the wire but had to drop the tank to do it. Ever notice how hard it is to get a tow truck on the weekend?

Buck
 

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Lessons learned? Add this area to the watch list. Check the clamps occasionally. Pretty sure they haven’t been touched since the car was done. When there’s a breakdown, don’t get so fixated on one thing like I was with the fuel pump that the obvious is missed. Add a winch to my SE trailer. I could have gotten back home myself pretty easily if I had a way to pull it into the trailer. Going to get right on that, and hope I don’t ever have to use it.
Great idea about adding a winch to your SE!:yes: I'm considering getting a SE, and a winch could be very helpful if ever needed!
 

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STUFF HAPPENS

No blue loctite on the starter bolts will let them come loose.>:)
 

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Had a few "problems" but the only head scratcher that put my Cobra on a flatbed was (this is embarrassing) found to be that the fuel inertia cut off switch was tripped by going too fast over speed bumps! Hard learnt lessons are not forgotten.
You're not alone. This happened to me too (inertia switch). Fortunately it was in gokart stage and in my neighborhood. I figured it out a couple of days later.
 

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Paul,
Reading your story brought back memories. Just one week before London this year I was driving the car to work down into the city (Chicago). I was only a few miles from home and the same thing. It died at a stop sign. Would always start back up every time. Any gas I'd give it killed it. I to thought fuel pump. I was able to get it home at idle. Took forever to go 3 miles at idle speed Initial start was downhill and rolled through every other stop sign.).
I went as far as pulling the fuel pump. Of course they 'look' fine. No way of seeing if it were dead. Then I opened the hood again and saw it. The same as you, The air intake tubes had serparated. How I missed it before, I don't know.

Being all black under the hood, I guess I just lissed it. I put the original fuel pump back in (stores were closed as I was working on it later that night after work). I've put several thousand miles on it since then.

Craig

Pic below.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Thanks for all the replies and shared experiences. I'm still shaking my head that I missed the obvious problem while on the side of the road. But looks like I'm not the only one that's done it. Would have been an easy fix to at least get back home. Will watch and feel pretty confident if it stops running again may look at the intake this time before calling for a tow truck.

Thanks also for the suggestions to prevent. An added brace is probably the best choice. But it's the peak of the driving season plus I'm pretty deep into the Coupe build. I do have a little concern about having a brace that's too rigid since the engine moves a little bit. But for now I've decided to take a quick and real low tech approach. I added a 2 x 2 inch square of pretty stiff closed cell 1/2 inch thick neoprene on the F-panel. It's self-adhesive, but didn't seem to want to stick all that well, so used some 3M Weatherstrip Adhesive. The end of the air cleaner sits firmly in the neoprene. Dampens the movement quite a bit, and should also help prevent from sliding apart. Have put a couple hundred miles on the car since this was installed and seems OK. But then it took several thousand for it to come apart with nothing. :eek:

 
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