It had been a while since anything failed on the Jeep.
But I had started having problems with the engine returning to the normal idle
speed of about 750 rpm. When I put the clutch in, the engine would continue to run
at higher RPMs and required that I blip the throttle to get it to return to the correct
I did some quick checks and squirted some graphite
lubricant into the cable casing at the gas pedal. It seemed to cure the problem and
I was about to forget all about it when it came right back the next day.
I fiddled with the throttle body linkage but could not
detect a problem at that end. So I decided perhaps the cable was getting frayed or
rusty and required replacement. Rather than tempt fate I acquired a replacement
before taking it apart.
Disassembly was not hard. The only thing I ran into
trouble with was the cable retainer snapped onto the pedal bracket assembly slot. I
had to pry it off with channel locks and ruined it in the process. I wasn't too
worried about it though when I got the rest of it apart I found that the cable was not
frayed and seemed to move freely in the casing... That was good news for the cable
except that I ruined it by breaking the retainer. Doh! But when I put a bend
in the cable like it is curved when installed, there was noticeable drag on the cable,
even if not enough to cause the throttle to stick.
So I succeeded in replacing the cable before it was
necessary. And whatever the problem was, it was still there. With the cable
disconnected from the throttle body, I ran the throttle back and forth several times and
felt a roughness and drag. It seemed like the spindle was in need of some
lubrication. So I hit it with a good stream of light oil with graphite in it.
The notion is that the light oil will drain off but the graphite will stay put on the
spindle and provide longer lasting lubrication. But this usually means that the
shaft is worn and will start to leak air and affect performance. Or at least that's
what happened on my SU carburetors. Anyway, the throttle now operates smoothly and
does not bind. The combination of the slight drag on the cable and the drag on the
shaft was just enough to hang things up. Another example of why keeping your machine
clean helps prevent mechanical failure. (Obviously, I did not observe this rule
liquid graphite lubricant