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1973 super beetle no start

have air, fuel and spark, but no start.

the red wire on the alternator looks to be burnt up. i’m thinking the alt. is fried, and possibly it’s time for a new one, and a voltage regulator. car has been sitting for a few years, so an oil cahnge is in order too.

any thoughts?

Try spraying some starter fluid into the intake and see if that helps.

You don’t need the alternator to start the engine. Once you have the engine running you can use a DVM to ascertain if the alternator is working. So first you have to get the engine started. You will need to recharge the battery as you try to start the engine anyway, so put a battery charger on the battery to bring it up to its best capacity.

When you say you have fuel, can you smell gasoline at the exhaust stubs? When you look down the carburator throat, can you see gas squirting onto the throttle plate when the throttle is openned. As Cougar said, will the engine catch on starter fluid? Is there a possibility that the engine has been overchoked and is flooded? Hold the choke open; crank; and see if the engine will catch.

When you say you have spark, is there a spark at each spark plug? Have the spark plugs been removed; cleaned; and individually tested for spark? Are the spark plugs wet with fuel? Has the distributor been out of the engine? How close is the timing to the correct setting?

You don’t mention compression. With the spark plugs out, have you measured the compression of each cylinder?

These engines are pretty simple. If you have a burnable mixture that is compressed the requisite amount and the spark occurs near Top Dead Center, the engine should run. Your response to the questions above will help us narrow the diagnosis.

Odds are the carburetor is gummed up with old gasoline, which has long since turned to varnish.

Spray some starting fluid into the carb and try starting the engine. If it runs briefly on the starting fluid you can eliminate air, spark, and compression as the problem.

Is the fuel fresh or two years old? If the fuel is two years old, it’s not any good.