Ford truck 302/carb: Hesitation when turning right

It hesitates a little, sort of stumbles, when I step on the gas, attempting to accelerate from 25 to 50 mph, but only when turning sharply to the right. Any ideas?

I can minimize the stumble by diddling the accel pedal a few times. Autolite carb.

Stuck or failing float maybe…
E10 Cali gas corroding the bowl area, carb in general…
Maybe time to open it up and see what it looks like internal…

Loose vacuum hose shifting when turning right…??..


If that carb utilizes a float bowl, it is very possible that the float is the problem. Check to see if there is a pinhole that is allowing fuel to enter the float, and thus cause problems when turning.

It looks like Dave beat me to it, by a few seconds!


Thanks for the idea. I had to remove the carb to clean the idle circuits a few months ago; I could see nothing wrong with the float or float mechanism then. This symptom pre-dates that cleaning. Not a serious problem, but a little annoying. The puzzle is why it only happens when turning right. I’m thinking that diy’ers who are involved w/track racing may have some experience w/this sort of problem. Most car tracks the cars only turn left though … lol …

It’s been years now, but I remember encountering this problem several times, only occurring when turning. It was usually some issue with the float.

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I had the exact same problem with my father’s '66 Ford Galaxie 500 (289 engine), and it was indeed a float problem.
I suspect that George’s truck is at least that old.

Mr George sir, just face it, it is simply time for a Edelbrock Intake and Carb of the 4 barrel variety upgrade, it is only 50 years past due… :grin:


I’ve come up with a theory based on the several float ideas above. The carb’s fuel bowl is rectangular, with the longer axis in the transverse direction, left to right oriented. The float ass’y is like-oriented, and hinges on the right (passenger side). So when turning to the right the gas in the fuel bowl sloshes to the left , raising the float and closing the fuel inlet valve. If this is the cause, it’s a design flaw, better if the float hinged at the front or back of the fuel bowl.

There’s a couple of reason why this theory might be incorrect. First, when the truck was new it didn’t seem to have this problem. Second, the fuel level rising on the left side of the fuel bowl should increase fuel flow through the left side jet, seems like that would compensate for possibly less fuel from the right side jet.

Check your float level… I used the L scale wrong (while talking to someone) and set my floats way to low (not paying attention) and on the test drive under hard acceleration it kept running out of fuel… lol… Oops

How old is the float?

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I rebuilt the carb & installed the parts that come w/the kit including a new float needle & seat maybe 4 years ago. The float itself is original to the carb. Just a few months ago I tested the float mechanism with the carb removed from the engine, to make sure it floats ok, not sticking, nothing leaks out the bottom of the carb overnight when the fuel bowl is filled, float sets the fuel level correct, etc.

I haven’t done an engine-idling fuel bowl fuel-level test since I last rebuilt the carb; good idea, I’ll put that on my list to check next. Not an emergency since I have a simple work-a-round, mostly just an unexplained annoyance. I was wondering if Fords of that era have a well-known susceptibility to engine bogging when turning sharply right.

I’m confused - does the carb currently have the original float, or the 4 year old float? If it’s a polymer float they can become saturated with gas. They’ll look fine, but not function correctly.

Yes, the carb has its original metal, hollow float. The carb (& its float) isn’t original to the truck. I replaced the original carb with a rebuilt unit I purchased from a Ford dealership when the truck was 10-15 years old. In retrospect, probably a mistake, I should have just rebuilt the original.

I misread your post, got it. And nothing is sloshing around if you shake the float, correct?

No sloshing.

I’d try and rig up a fuel pressure gauge (hooked in very near the carb) to see if that’s the problem.

Do you have enough gas in the gas tank?? Depending on were the pick up tube is, the gas could be flowing away from the pickup tube when turning right, or part if the tube could have rusted off and now it is not reaching the bottom of the tank anymore…

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That’s a good idea, easy to test. I usually run the truck with less than 1/2 tank, but next time I’ll fill it to the brim and see if that has any effect.

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I tried your idea over the weekend, filling the gas tank to the brim did the job, no hesitation when turning right now. .