Last post on Mar 27, 2002 at 12:17 PM
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Coupe, Convertible, Sedan
Nov 16, 2001 (6:37 pm)
My buddies and I were usually pretty broke. When a heater core started leaking we would usually just bypass the thing.
Of course, this was in So. Calif.
#47 of 55 The heater fan control in my '68 Dart...
Nov 16, 2001 (6:47 pm)
...shorted out awhile back. I lived with it for awhile, but then finally caved in and bought another control unit (the thing with all the buttons, temp slider, and fan speed selector) from the junkyard for something like $10.00. It started blowing fuses though, and one day I put too big of a fuse in, and I guess it shorted the thing out again.
I can still get heat in the wintertime though. It kind of filters in, and the faster you drive, the more heat you get. The a/c effect in the summertime isn't really noticeable though, but when you put all four windows down (it's a hardtop), open the vent windows, plus the vents under the dash, and pop the sunroof, who needs a/c?
#48 of 55 Rebuilding Transmission
Dec 15, 2001 (1:52 pm)
My first car was an English Ford Cortina which got a hit 'n run in front of our house one night which totaled it. So I parted it out got together what little money I could along with a small loan from my dad and bought a '68 Triumph TR250 for $800. The bodu & interior were decent but it ran like crap and the manual transmission was history as the main bearings were shot and it made lots of noise.
So being young, fearless and broke I proceeded to attempt to fix it myself. Without the proper tools, ie using a hammer and screwdriver's rather than bearing pullers etc :-)I disassembled it and bought some used (yes used as I could not afford new) bearings from a local Triumph parts place. Believe it or not, the operation was successful and the transmission worked like a charm, synchros and all. That and a good tune up had the car running like a champ and it turned out to be a great car for me which I enjoyed in high school.
#49 of 55 That reminds me of my 65 Plymouth
Dec 16, 2001 (2:12 am)
Belvedere with the 383 and 4-speed. It needed a clutch, and being young and broke [I could barely make the monthly payments of $72 a month, in 1966]I decided to do it myself, with the help of a friend. That 4speed was the huge, heavy duty Chrysler 4speed they'd built to take the racing hemi, and I tried to lift it out lying on my back like I had the 3speed on my 55 Chev. Some difference! Way too heavy. I gave up and went and got a transmission jack. What a job! Turned out there was oil that had ruined the clutch, and I had to just slap in another clutch without finding out where the oil was coming from. Hell, it was better than it was, for minimum bucks. When it started slipping again, months later, I just sold it and got a VW bug, and put some money in my pocket. Always did wish I'd fixed that Plymouth right and kept it-at least a little longer.
#50 of 55 Cheap Fix
Mar 21, 2002 (10:53 pm)
I was the proud owner of a 1952 Ford V-8. This particular engine had the fuel pump mounted on top of the block back by the firewall. It was actuated by a push rod operated by a lobe on the cam shaft. One rainy dark evening about halfway between Seattle and WSC in Pullman, the old Ford quit. I sat by the road for the better part of an hour when a grizzled old farmer stopped and asked if I needed help. He raised the hood, cracked the fitting loose on the carbeurater and told me to crank the engine. He then asked if I had an old pair of shoes. I did and he said we had to sacrifice one of them to the automotive gods. I gave him the shoes and he promptly cut a piece out of one side of the right shoe (why I remember this, I'll never know) and took the fuel pump loose from the block. He then inserted the piece of leather atop the rod for the fuel pump, bolted it back together and had me crank the engine. Turned over a few times and fired up. Amazing what one could do to keep that old beast running. From that day on, I always kept a knife, appropriate wrenches and an old shoe in the ford. That fix was good for about 200 miles and then had to be redone. I got by this way for about a year and someone finally told me that a new pushrod was only about $5.00 but who had $5.00 when tuition was $300/yr.?
Mar 22, 2002 (9:14 am)
Now, try that with a modern car!
I love those old flatheads! They had such a wonderful sound too!
#52 of 55 TimZ58: And did your route to WSC include
Mar 22, 2002 (1:05 pm)
Washtucna, Dusty and the Colfax cutoff via the airport road? When there I was a GDI, graduating '55 when you were a Freshman. Try driving over the hill and leaving your car all day in the parking lot between Holland Library and the CUB today.
#53 of 55 Throttle cable?
Mar 25, 2002 (11:32 am)
Back when, I had a Touring-bodied iron block 2 liter Alfa. One day, shortly after getting on the freeway, the engine stopped revving. Dropped back to idle, wouldn't respond to throttle. So I coasted to the side of the berm, left it running, and had a look.
Yep, the throttle cable had let go. Somehow managed to find the ends and tie them together, not a good or a long-term solution.
Later called our local Alfa/Lotus dealer (as you'd expect from the cars he sold, a crook with an incompetent and very expensive shop) about getting a replacement. Large problem, my car didn't match the parts book. It really didn't, much of the hardware wasn't as listed. The way of the Alfa Romeo is dangerous. Cable could be fabricated, send money.
So went to the local good bike (as in bicycle, yes, human-powered), found a stainless brake cable about the right diameter and too long, and improvised. Was still working just fine when I sold the car a year later.
#54 of 55 WSC route
Mar 26, 2002 (10:36 pm)
On occasion the route did include Dusty, Washtucna and Colfax. Unfortunately, my college career was short-lived due to a concentration of Idaho drinking laws and majoring in party, beer and recreation. Went back to Moscow in the mid '70's and had a part ownership in a dive called Mort's Club but that is another story. Don't know where you are located but we go to the Moscow-Pullman area 2 or 3 times a year and go up 84 to Umatilla and then North on 95 to Tri Cities. Next trip, try taking the Kalotus cutoff from 95 through to Washtucna. It cuts off about 20 miles and is good two lane road with no pesky hiway patrol...........usually about 85 MPH through there. One more cheap car fix I saw in those good old days was on a Chevy 216 motor. These beasts were cursed with a "dip and pray" (max-15 PSI oil pressure) poured babbit bearing connecting rod system that resulted in many rods through the engine block when pushed too hard. There were shims installed under the rod cap to provide the necessary clearance between the crankshaft journal and the bearing surface. If you kind of babied it along (55-60 MPH, they would run a long time before they started knocking due to the bearing surface wearing out. The shims could be removed to tighten up the loose rod and away you went. When all the shims were gone, you could put the rod cap in a vise and get out your big flat bastard file and file both sides of the rod cap and get a little more out of the rod. This was a "temporary" fix that sometimes lasted for years. Along those lines, a friend had a Dodge power wagon and it started knocking. This problem was solved by dropping the pan, removing the rod cap and using a piece of 400 grit emory cloth on the journal to remove the scoring. He then installed a .010" undersize bearing and was on the road again. This held together long enough to get the truck sold dirt cheap to some poor unsuspecting fellow who drove it for the next five years without a problem.
#55 of 55 timz58: Interesting you mention the Chevy 216
Mar 27, 2002 (12:17 pm)
That was our engine in our '39 Master DeLuxe and you are right on as to cruising speed. 55 was where we sat as it had a 4:11 rear end. When funds were low and the sun was out, the hose to the WS wipers was disconnected to enable more air into the engine, running leaner, saving fuel, but also not good on the valves. JC Whitney sold a rocker arm cover that you would soak in a gallon of oil and then place on top just before installing the valve cover. After adjusting the valve lash 06 intake and 13 exhaust it was decided a noisy Chev was a healthy Chev. Ah yes, those were the days.