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Maybe a dumb question. I have a 46 torpedo 8 that is suppose to have a carter WDO carb on it. I found the model on the carb and it either says WCD or WGD. I am going to pull the carb off to find out for sure, but I am wondering if there is any real big concern about running one of those over a WCD carb? Again, this may be a stupid question, I just want to find out before I drop good money on a rebuild kit for a carb that won't work properly on my car. Thanks!

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The Carter WDO carburetor was used from 1940 through early 1947 and then changed to the WCD carb. The information below came from a brief article I wrote for the Early Times newsletter and should answer all of your questions.


Carburetor Conversion Package

Group No. 3.727

Part No. 510614

This package is used to install the Carter WCD carburetor, Part No. 509547, in place of the original Carter WDO unit. The WDO carburetors were installed on eight cylinder engines beginning with the 1940 Series 29 cars, and all 1941-1947 8 cylinder jobs through Engine Number 12,388.

The carburetor conversion package was listed in the1948 Wholesale Parts catalog. The conversion carburetor listed under Part No. 509547 carried Tag No. 630S.

Part number 509547 was superseded by Part No. 513122 on 4-1-50. Part number 513122 was superseded by Part No. 514097 on 1-1-51.

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I re-read your original post, does your car currently have performance problems that you believe a carb overhaul will cure?

The Carter WCD carb, tag No. 630S, is the factory replacement for an original WDO carb. If your carb is tagged as such, you have the correct carburetor for your car. Rebuilding one of these Carter carbs requires special tools to properly adjust the metering rod height, which is nearly as critical as setting the float level correctly. The service manual outlines the procedures; if you change the accelerator pump setting, you must check/adjust the metering rod height. If your carburetor needs to be overhauled and you don't have the special tools necessary, I would recommend having it done by an experienced repair shop; properly set-up you should get thousands of miles of trouble-free driving. These carbs do not have any plastic or synthetic rubber parts inside that are susceptable to damage from todays fuels.

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BOTH the Carter type WD-0 and WCD carburetors SHOULD be adjusted with factory gauges when rebuilt; however the gauges are available, so do not let this deter you from rebuilding your own carburetor.

The factory shop manual is also a wonderful tool.

As to replacement:

The WD-0 was Carter's first attempt at a two-barrel carb.

The 630s WCD replaced all of the WD-0 models used by Pontiac

The 719s WCD replaced the 630s (standard transmission)

The 720s WCD replaced the 653s (automatic transmission)

(Opinion) as stated above, the WD-0 was Carter's first attempt at a downdraft two barrel carburetor. While much better than the Holley of the day, it fell short of the more expensive Stromberg (in reliability, not in performance when working properly). The later WCD was/is an excellent carburetor, as good or better than the Stromberg, both in performance and reliability.

Carter used metering rod technology in their carburetors. The metering rods SHOULD be adjusted using factory metering rod gauges (still available for most Carter carburetors). This complexity is looked at as a negative by some enthusiasts; but really should be looked at as a positive. The metering rod technology gave Carter the ability to more finely tune the A/F mixture at different levels of vacuum; thus improving power, economy, and driveability of the vehicle.

And the metering rod gauge is the only NECESSARY special tool (there are others which can be useful, but can be replaced with more common tools by the enterprising enthusiast).


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I had a 48' Streamliner with the WCD and now own a 46' Streamliner with the WDO and I can say that the WCD worked and runs better. The fuel connection for the WCD would be on the back side of the carb toward the firewall instead of the front like the WDO. That could easily be fixed with plumbing the fuel line around to the back but don't expect to sneak that past the judges at an AACA show. For driving, the WCD works great. Thanks. -Rick

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