Engine 85 no-start after carb rebuild


New Member
Jun 5, 2021
Austin, TX
Hi, new here, I'll have a lot of dumb questions...
I bought an 85 a while ago, that's been heavily messed with in a non-professional manner, and also it's been sitting for 5+ years. There's *a lot* of things non-stock on the car, but the most relevant for this is probably that it has an electric fuel pump, mounted under the car (original was mechanic). The car wouldn't even crank after I bought it, but replacing battery and starter/solenoid fixed that one. After it put in ~2g of fresh fuel, it started up first time. The engine was idling (kinda rough, but didn't die), but died as soon as I touched the gas pedal. So I thought I'd pull the carb (Holley 4160 w/ electric choke) and rebuild it. That didn't go great, bought the wrong kit (jets didn't fit, but most gaskets did), so I just cleaned everything and put it in w/ new gaskets.
But now it won't even idle :( When I try to start it, there's a lot of fuel getting into the bowl w/ the choke plate on it, and eventually that'll catch fire.
(I should probably mention that I know a bit about EFI cars, but just about nothing about carbs, barely even how they work).
I didn't mess w/ any of the adjustment screws in the process, and I *think* I put everything back together right and reconnected all the hoses the way they were.
What can I do to diagnose this? Vacuum leaks and wiring issues are *very* likely w/ this car, but the fact that it was idling before I messed with it makes me think I probably f-ed something up :(
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Bit more info I forgot: The fuel tank was dry when I got it, and the little mesh filter in the carb hat a bit of debris in it that I cleaned out. I *think* there's no fuel filter either, at least not where the pump is. I was gonna add an inline filter, can I put that in the engine bay rather than near the pump? Also, what should my fuel pressure be w/ this setup?
Plastic filters get hot and weak. I do not want one under pressure under the hood or by the exhaust. They also do not do well with impacts from debris or belts.
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