The Fish Carburetor Project

Phase I

Mike Brown with sample castings for the new production of the Fish Carburetor

 

As you can see from the photos, we have castings for the Fish Carburetor. You will also note that we have only four (4) sets of castings-bodies and float bowls. The reason we only have four sets at the moment is that we had to make sure that what we were going to get from the foundry was acceptable. They were. We have now ordered 110 sets of castings.

The 110 sets of castings should arrive in August, at which time we will begin the machining operations. We should have complete carburetors "ready to ship" within 6 to 12 weeks after the castings arrive.

If you are wondering why the float bowl doesn't look original, it's because the originally configured (and size) float bowl had a tendency, due to the small amount of fuel stored in them and the higher under hood temperatures of cars made in the 1960s and later, to cause "vapor lock" (more accurately, percolation).


Phase II

Fish Carburetor Update August 9, 2009

The Float Problem

We thought we were going to have to produce our own floats as we had been informed that the Carter YF floats we had used in times past had been discontinued. Customer Greg Taylor solved this one for us by locating a source of them. Kudos, Greg.

The Tooling

The tooling for the Fish Carburetor is now complete. However, the tooling has to be tested.

Tooling Testing

We have to run a test part for every operation. We are in the process of doing that now.

Inspection

We have to inspect each test part in order to determine if each machining operation is "spot on." The video below shows us machining a Fish Carburetor body is a part of this process.

Production

Everything we have done so far checks out. We should start our production run any day now. Estimated time to completion of first production run of Fish Carburetors is 90 days.


FISH CARBURETOR SURVEY RESULTS AND ORDER FORM

        It appears that we have over a hundred people willing to pay $850 for a brand new 2" bore Fish carburetor with adapter plate, linkage, and air cleaner adapter.

       Instructions for ordering will be given later in this announcement. There are some things you should know first.

        First, you can quite often find a used Fish carburetor on eBay or Craig’s list for $250 to $400. If all you want is one to put somewhere on display, that might be the best and cheapest way to get one.

        Second, John Robert Fish, Jr. told me in 1982 to put a 2" bore Fish carburetor into production, suitable for 366 cu. in. Chevy big blocks and similar engines. We did. We have never seen one of those carbs on eBay or Craig’s list since we quit producing that carburetor in 1996. If you had purchased one in the late 1980s or 1990s from us, and it took your motor home from 5 mpg to 8 mpg and increased your speed up a grade from 15 mph to 45 mph, would you sell it?

        Third, we have ordered the castings, 110 of them.

        We are allowing for scrap. We will run approximately 100 of them. It will be interesting to see how many of the men who answered our survey are actually serious. If all of them are, we should sell out in six weeks or less. If we’re dealing with the usual hood lifters and tire kickers, it will probably take eighteen months to sell them. It’s our gamble.

        Fourth, you might want to be cognizant of the reason we decided to do a limited run of Fish carburetors, other than the fact that there appear to be at least 100 men who would like to have one:

A LITTLE BACKGROUND

        1. There are millions of carbureted vehicles still on the road in the United States today. When we went out of production in 1996, gasoline was relatively cheap.

        2. No one else knows what we know about manufacturing this carburetor. The only other person who did, John Robert Fish, Jr., died in 2007.

        3. There is an increasing interest in alternate fuels. A simple throttle adjustment will convert the Fish from gasoline to ethanol in about 90 seconds.

        4. Twelve years ago the Internet was relatively small and reached a small percent of the population. Most people didn’t know we existed.

        5. The demand has been building for twelve years. Given "all of the above," doing a production run of 100 Fish carburetors appears to be a fairly safe bet.

WHY THE 2" DIAMETER BORE MODEL?

        When we went out of production in 1996 the 2" diameter bore model Fish carburetor was outselling everything else we made by about 20 to 1. Why? What our customers found out was that the 2" model Fish worked better the heavier the vehicle, the steeper the grade, the more stop and go driving the vehicle did. For vehicles under 300 cu. in. engine displacement, unless there was a factory defect to begin with (e.g., 1970 Ford trucks were notorious for porous intake manifolds) mileage improvement was negligible.

ORDERING INSTRUCTIONS

         1. Please allow 3 to 6 months for delivery.

        2. Specify your intake manifold configuration. E.g., 2-barrel, 4-barrel, single barrel, Ford, Chevy, or Chrysler. Five different adapter plates either fit "all of the above" or we will slot the base for you. This also tells us which linkage package we need to provide.

        3. Send a postal money order for $425 as a deposit (half the purchase price) made out to Mike Brown (not Mike Brown Solutions, not Fish Carburetor, or anything else). Send the postal money order with the form below to:

Mike Brown
PO Box 4884
Springfield, MO 65808

        We will notify you when your Fish carburetor is ready to ship so that you may then forward the balance of $425 (postal money order). . Your postal money order will be stored in a safety deposit box until your order is ready to ship and, if for some reason things go wrong, your postal money order will be returned to you.

        For those of you outside the continental United States the balance due will include freight charges. You will also have to pay whatever customs duties or tariffs your own government will impose at your end.

        We will provide a paid in full receipt once you have made full payment.

      4. If you can’t follow directions for payment your order will be returned to you immediately and you will be deleted from your position on the list. I.e., no personal checks, no credit cards, no money orders that expire in 90 days, etc.

      5. Delivery in 3 to 6 months means delivery in 3 to 6 months. If you start badgering us with phone calls, emails, and the like, even if you have followed the directions, your order will be returned to you immediately and you will be deleted from your position on the list, permanently.

        For example, when we started building the 1 hp steam engine we ran into unforeseen problems (first, unacceptable castings putting us back to starting over, and then a few others in the process) that delayed shipment. That ended up creating an irate customer who demanded his money back 3 days before we could ship him his steam engine. Everyone in that type of situation is unhappy and we want to avoid it.

        There is an exception. If you order more than one (1) Fish carburetor, there will be no refunds on orders for 2 or more, which indicates a few speculators are on the list.

        If you are mechanically challenged, please don’t order a Fish carburetor. We have enough problems troubleshooting vacuum leaks and the like (caused by porous intake manifolds, leaking and rotten gaskets, etc.) for men who actually have mechanical ability.

        If you want a Fish carburetor for better gas mileage, consider this: if you have a 1978 Ford truck with a 360 cu. in. engine and 2 bbl carburetor and you are already getting 16-18 mpg, you might want to pass. The cost of the carburetor may not be justified and you may not see a significant improvement.

        If you do not have The Fish Carburetor Book, we strongly recommend it. The Fish is not a "100 mpg carburetor" and it would be extremely helpful—to you and to us—if you had some idea of how it works and how to adjust it before it arrives.

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        Having read "all of the above" and if you are still determined to own a Fish carburetor, fill out the form below and enclose your $425 postal money order made out to Mike Brown.

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

        If you want to monitor our progress on the Internet, check in regularly on mikebrownsolutions.com. As we progress, we will put up photos on the web site with captions detailing our progress—when the castings arrive, when we start machining, assembly, etc. I.e., there will be no need for phone calls, emails, etc.

Order Form Link

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This page was updated on 12 August 2009