<VV> The Eternal Mechanical vs Electrical Fuel Pump Question

Robert Marlow Vairtec at optonline.net
Mon May 25 22:41:23 EDT 2009

Hello, friends, and welcome to this season's fresh installment of

Which Is Better:  Stock Mechanical Fuel Pump or Aftermarket Electric Fuel Pump?

For this go-round, we have some particulars to add.  The subject 
vehicle is a 1963 Rampside, being put into regular service after 
years of being a hangar queen.  So day-to-day dependability is a 
prime concern.  The original stock pump did its failure thing, 
filling the crankcase with fuel and diluting the engine oil.  Despite 
that experience, the vehicle's owner (me) has no particular objection 
to stock pumps nor any inherent resistance to the use of an electric 
pump.  The true issue is, I can't make up my mind!

We do not have time nor bandwidth for re-hashing the well-documented 
high failure rate of stock pumps back several years ago.  Our concern 
is with pumps that are available TODAY.  Since the chatter about pump 
failures has died down, I am making the assumption that if you order 
a stock pump today from one of our fine Corvair-specific vendors, you 
will receive a pump with reliability greatly improved over what we 
were seeing a few years ago.

Is this true?

Of the other Corvairs I own, two of them are operating today on their 
factory-original pumps, while the third, a car prepared for track 
events, has an electric pump.  I have heard it from good authority 
that if you take an original pump off an engine and put it in a box 
on a shelf in the garage for a few years, it is far more likely to 
fail when returned to service than if it had been left in 
service.  So while my Corvairs with their original pumps continue to 
run just fine, I am reluctant to put an older take-off pump in the 
Rampside.  Which means I need to buy a new pump.


Who has purchased a new stock fuel pump RECENTLY, and put it into 
use, and been pleased (or displeased)?  Similarly, who has recently 
made the change to an electric pump, and is pleased or displeased?

A side question for the electric users:  What, if any, means have you 
used to cut off electric power in the event that the engine stops or 
the vehicle crashes?  (In my track car, I have an oil pressure 
switch, a Ford inertia switch, and a toggle override switch for cold starts.)


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