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How To Troubleshoot A Nitro Engine [Carburetor]

How To Troubleshoot A Nitro Engine [Carburetor]

Optimal Universal Needle Settings

One of the more common questions from inexperienced nitro guys you’ll find on RC message boards is this: what is the perfect needle setting for my particular engine? Unfortunately, no such optimal needle setting exists.  Needle settings will vary widely depending on many factors, including your local weather, altitude, humidity, fuel and ambient tempratures.  If one perfect optimal setting existed, the engine manufacturer would lock that setting in an eliminate carb needles entirely. Carb needles are adjustable for a reason!


Assuming the fuel, air and ignition are in proper working order, your engine’s carb may be damaged or simply out of tune.  Check the carb body for leaks, cracks and loose fittings.  Then get the needles tuned properly by checking your owners manual for the carb’s factory baseline settings.  If you can’t find these settings, call the manufacturer.  It doesn’t take much tinkering with the needles to completely screw up the fuel mixture.  Start returning from the baseline settings whenever you’re lost.

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Updated: May 31, 2012 — 1:50 PM
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1 Comment

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  1. Also the o-rings on the needles can wear out…If they turn easy they can move or leak.

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