TL;DR - In reverse, with foot on the brake, the vacuum fluctuates. What does this mean, and does this help the diagnosis?
To Red Knox: No, I thought I had fixed the idle problem, but it was a temporary emergency, get home in one trip only and strictly sort of band-aid, involving tape. But I drove it repeatedly like that. Basically keeping the idle on the highest step of the fast idle cam. The same as if I had my foot on the gas pedal at all times, in park, neutral, reverse, drive, etc. It was bad bad bad and the worst thing I could have done and I regret it terribly. Because doing that is what did my motor mounts in. It got the job done, which was kept the car running without dying at idle or getting into gear, but it was a violent shift into gear. My most shameful mechanical experience, next to easy bake ovening my Gi-Joe. Get out of there Gi-Joe! Suzie’s baking up Communist Manifestos!
I could kiss you George from San Jose. That makes so much sense it hurts. I swear the car runs fine on cold start up first thing in the morning, but as soon as it warms up, and I hit the gas, it dies. I pathetically tried to look for a vacuum leak, spraying brake cleaner around vacuum hoses. One tri-section trio/tee of hoses seemed to affect the engine’s idle so I’ll be replacing those old hoses. But I mean, that’s just a shot in the dark. There’s more, something else, something bigger I’m sure.
Oh! Key discovery today that I think will help greatly. On cold start up, before the engine had fully warmed up, I put it into reverse. The entire engine shifted and I did not like that. Doing that so many times was what broke the motor mounts I literally spilled blood, sweat, and tears replacing. Took days and almost 20 hours. A combination of the most rusted out 40 year old bolts in the world, not having the right tools, the most insane angles, and my having the strength of a small girl, did me in. But with the help of a ridiculous cheater bar, a torch, a go-through ratchet, and some wrenches, when I finally got that last bolt off, I was exuberant.
But anyway, while I was in reverse, with my foot on the brake, with the vacuum gauge connected, the needle fluctuated. I don’t know the correct term, but I believe it was hunting or surging. Please tell me what this means. It did the same fluctuating at another time, I forget the exact conditions. Ah! It’ll come back to me eventually, but maybe that was enough information there already. And again, a violent shift into reverse. Shook the whole engine. Didn’t like that and I’m pretty sure it shouldn’t do that.
It makes so much sense what you’re saying. And thank you for that edit, because I was getting the impression that I had a faulty part- that it was that door you were talking about. But it’s almost always something basic isn’t it - pirate, un-metered air. Hard to find a vacuum leak by spraying carb cleaner or using smoke, because the radiator fan blows straight across everything. Any other tips? Nonetheless, I will try. Oh! I’ll try putting a hose onto my propane tank, and poking that around. And I could smoke the lines with the engine and fan off of course, lol. I thank you again.