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My son Jonah, a beginner at all of this, but a real gear head, just received his first glow motor (ASP 21) from Hobbyking and we are having trouble getting it to start. Glow plug works, compressions seems fine, but so far no combustion. We're wondering if the fuel is the problem. We're using regular diesel fuel (like for a tractor) and are wondering if that might be the problem. Any ideas?
That is the problem. Diesel fuel is not suitable at all for that engine. You need the correct methanol based 'glowplug' fuel. Do not try to run it again of DERV.
In addition, please give it a good clean to get rid of the diesel fuel to ensure it will run when the correct fuel is used.
Google 'glowplug engine fuel' and find a local supplier.
Yes, as WTWUK wrote, diesel fuel is not suitable for a model glowplug engine. It requires a mix of methanol, caster or synthetic oil and nitro-methane. Commercially made fuel is readily available from model shops, in the UK Model Technics is a big brand along with Optifuel etc. You need to buy something with either 5 or 10% nitro-methane content and depending on the type of oil this will be between 10 and 20%.
Once you have the correct fuel fill the fuel tank and prime the engine, to do this ensure the needle valves are set as per instructions. The slow running needle should be factory set and the main needle will need to be open 2 to 3 turns, do not attach any power to the glowplug at this point. Open the throttle on the carb fully, put your finger over the air intake and turn the propeller anti-clockwise (looking from the front). Do this until you see the fuel travel up to carb through the fuel pipe (use clear fuel pipe), once the fuel has reached the carb continue to turn the propeller around another 2 or 3 revolutions. By doing this you are drawing fuel into the crankcase and this is priming the engine. The keep the throttle fully open and flick the propeller over smartly several times to get the fuel mixture into the cylinder, the engine is now ready to start. Close the throttle down to the idle position, this is where the rotating throttle barrel is almost closed, you should just be able to see a small part of the hole through the barrel. Attach the 2V power source to the glowplug and either smartly flick the engines propeller, still anti-clockwise or use an electric started and the engine should start and run.