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About jrbartlett

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    Senior Member


  • Biography
    Grew up in the hobby working on father's Packard, DeSoto & LaSalle, driving on car tours in the 1960s
  1. Babbitt Engine Rebuilder in Pennsylvania Area

    Now, for a more practical side of this eternal babbitt vs. insert debate. I know you can get new rods made to any dimensions. But what is the availability of inserts to fit the typically large-diameter rod and main bearing crankshaft pins of '20s and '30s engines? I heard a while back that these inserts are getting hard to find, since the applications they were originally made for are now often also obsolete. If that is the case, won't we have to continue using babbitt in some (or many) applications? Also, since modern bearings tend to be narrow, how practical and reliable is it to line up a couple of inserts on the typically wide main bearing surfaces of older engines? Also, in my five decades in the hobby, I've see dozens upon dozens of '20s and '30s-vintage cars with well over 50,000 miles on the odometer, all put on by the original longer-stroke engines with babbitt bearings. My '29 Super Eight Packard is now approaching 50,000 miles, still on the original rod and main bearings, according to the car's past owners. It's still smooth and quiet. So YES, INSERTS ARE BEST. I would go that route where possible. But NO, BABBIT DOESN'T WEAR OUT OR TEAR UP INSTANTLY, AND CAN LAST FOR TENS OF THOUSANDS OF MILES AT REASONABLE SPEED. Though admittedly, not at interstate highway speeds. For engines with odd dimensions that couldn't be accommodated by modern insert bearings, I wouldn't hesitate to re-babbitt them and not worry about it. Babbitt would also be fine for the way most of us drive our antiques these days -- with care and recognition of their advanced age and technology limits.
  2. Car rescue in houston

    Dynaflash, that's me you're wondering about. I now live on a hillside (rare in this area) north of Houston overlooking a creek that looked like the Mississippi River during the height of the rain. But it never came more than halfway up the hill. All my cars are fine. My former house in Houston -- which you visited -- was flooded. We're all concerned about the Doerflers' situation and will be over to help when the water goes down -- which is probably a week or two away.
  3. How to Clean out the Gas tank on a 32 Packard

    Just went through this with a '36 Cord gas tank. Left Evaporust in it for two months -- it did nothing. Also tried rotating the tank with rocks inside. Again, little to no improvement. The rust was too severe. Eventually sent the tank to Renu. Do a search on that name and you'll find information on their process.
  4. Anyone Wreck a New Car Shortly After Purchasing It ?

    My father was approaching a car dealership in the 1960s when he saw a car pull out of the dealer's driveway, directly into the path of an oncoming vehicle and get T-boned. My father stopped to help and noticed the car had the dealer sticker in the window. The driver said he had just bought it, and added that "I've heard about stuff like this, but never really believed it." He had literally gotten 50 feet before wrecking his brand new car.
  5. 2018 Glidden?

    Is the date and location of next year's Glidden known yet?
  6. Aluminum Connecting Rods

    Duesenberg Model J originally used aluminum connecting rods (and tubular steel rods on the supercharged versions), but many if not most of the aluminum rods have now been replaced due to failure or fear of failure. Was the reason the increased 4000+ RPM of these engines? Are aluminum rods being used in modern engines? Looking forward to your information and views.
  7. Trailer

    I'm running larger tires, but the pressures they call for are typically 80-85 PSI. As said, check the tire sidewall for the recommended pressure.
  8. How fast to drive?

    In the family we have a '38 Chrysler Royal 6-cylinder convertible coupe with overdrive. The engine speed is fairly low with overdrive kicked in, but there's not enough power to get beyond 65-70. In fact, we're floorboarded at that speed. It's a small engine in a heavy car.
  9. Neat looking 1928 Dodge Victory 6 on Long Island NY For Sale

    My father once had one of these in great original condition. He sold it to a fellow collector, who later sold it to a guy who swore that he was going to keep it original. He didn't. He hot-rodded it and completely ruined it.
  10. Who Rebuilds Nova Differentials?

    I'm interested in a higher (numerically lower) rear end ratio. Does anyone sell or rebuild the differential units to include new ring and pinion gears and bearings/seals? Please advise, and thanks.
  11. WTB

    If no replacements are available, you might go to a bicycle shop and take a look at the brake cables and derailleur cables. They look similar to the end shown -- don't know what your other end looks like..
  12. Another easy check is the vacuum advance in the distributor -- plus the mechanical advance weights -- plus overall timing.
  13. Vacuum tank problems

    Agree with Viv W. I've had the brass seat come loose on a '29 Packard -- it would go great for hours and then suddenly shut down. Had a hard time finding it. Now it would be the first thing I would check. I also had success with smoothing out the flapper valve at bottom with 1,000-grit sandpaper; the valve was slightly warped. Now it seals well.
  14. 2018 Grand National Meets

    When and where are the 2018 Grand National Meet(s) scheduled? Thanks.
  15. What Make is this '30s Classic Car Steering Gear

    Thanks for the insight. I'll explore this further. I have a '35 Auburn 8, which admittedly is a much lighter car, and it steers very easily. It's also a Ross, but I rebuilt it with new sector shaft bushing, and the sector shaft itself spray welded and turned down to original size. Added an O-ring so I could fill it with oil, rather than grease. My J does steer heavily, which was why I was asking. I've not gone into the box yet, but may do so.