Jim Cannon

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About Jim Cannon

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    '63 Riv Tech Advisor

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    : Houston, TX (winter) Hiawassee, GA (summer)


  • Biography
    I learned to sail when I was 10 years old. I am an Eagle Scout. I have always had The Knack for repairing things mechanical and electrical. I learned Spanish on the streets of Miami from the children of Cuban refugees. I can tread water for hours with my hands and feet bound. I am a recognized expert on the 1963 Buick Riviera. My hands work independently of each other, allowing me to do two things at once with them (such as remove or tighten nuts or bolts).

    I once constructed a "bicycle built for two" with the riders sitting back-to-back, just to show it could be done. I spent a week traveling up the Amazon River by boat. I swim with piranha. In my spare time I build model bridges with wooden match sticks. I love to teach science to Second Graders, and tutor Physics and Calculus to High School students. I played golf twice and decided it was not very challenging, so I dropped it. I cook award-winning Churrasco.

    I collect music from the 20s and 30s on original 78 rpm records and play it on my three vintage Victrolas. I don't perspire. I can throw playing cards across the room with deadly accuracy. I was the 11th caller, and I could name that tune. Jimmy Carter and I built houses together all over the world. I successfully kept hummingbirds in my aviary; zoos consult me on their care.

    I restored my first horseless carriage when I was 14 years old, something that I enjoy to this day. I learned to drive a car with a clutch on a 1929 Ford; the car sits in my garage to this day. I'm completely ambidextrous, which allows me to paint a house in half the time. Despite rumors to the contrary, I have never infiltrated a secret Russian air base outside Moscow. I hunt quail on the pampas of Uruguay. My work was instrumental in understanding how much damage had occurred during the accident at Three Mile Island. To entertain myself, I recite Burns aloud. I am no longer welcome at the Palms in Vegas.

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  1. You won't find the muffler in the '63 shop manual because it was introduced after the shop manual went to the printers. Not all '63 Rivs had an A/C muffler! Early in the production of the car, they decided that the compressor was making too much noise under the hood while driving. So they added this muffler on cars with A/C made in the 3rd week of October, 1962, and later (around FB 4000 and later).
  2. Jim Cannon

    63 Riv AC flush and vacuum

    Use new green o-rings on every connection every time. They are cheap. Lubricate them lightly with a drop or two of mineral oil as you assemble, to not pinch or tear an o-ring. If you have not done so already, put some UV dye into the mineral oil. It will help you find any leaks more easily in the future, after you charge the system and run it (won't help now). Connect both hoses from your manifold gauge set to their corresponding high- and low-pressure taps on the A/C system, and the vacuum pump to the center hose.. Do not leave one hose off of the A/C ports.
  3. Jim Cannon

    67 brake booster?

    What Ed said. You can NOT use a '67 front disk - rear drum master cylinder on a car with all 4 wheels disc brakes. It will screw up the rear brakes big time.
  4. Jim Cannon

    63 Riv AC flush and vacuum

    Yes. When you are done pulling a vacuum on the system for a really long time (overnight, 24 hours, etc. -- a long time) you close both manifold valves on the gauge set, turn the vacuum pump off, disconnect the pump and you hook up a can of R12 to the center line (where the pump was connected). You loosen the center line attachment a little bit at the gauge set manifold to flush the air out with a little R-12, then you tighten it back up. Open one valve on the gauge set to let R-12 flow into the vacuumed out system until the pressure on the low pressure gauge is a few PSI above zero. Then close all of the valves and remove the hoses from the A/C system and put caps on the ports. In this condition, you can drive to the A/C shop for final charge with R-12.
  5. Jim Cannon

    63 Riv AC flush and vacuum

    You USE the R-12 to break the vacuum after running the vacuum pump overnight.
  6. Jim Cannon

    63 Riv AC flush and vacuum

    No, not dry hydrogen gas, dry nitrogen. The hydrogen comment was a typo. After vacuuming the system for many hours overnight, break the vacuum with some R-12 before disconnecting your A/C gauges and driving up to your new A/C guy. Pulling a second vacuum will only find a really large leak. Put UV dye in the A/C oil to help you find any leaks with a black light.
  7. Jim Cannon

    65 Riviera Lighting failure

    IIRC = If I Recall Correctly An old Internet Forum abbreviation. See also: AFAIK = As Far As I know YMMV = Your Mileage May Vary Others can chime in with their favorites.
  8. A reminder to all that these are available. If you have a first-gen Riv, these are helpful and interesting to read. You can order them from me at 63Rivvy (at) gmail (dot) com Shipping by USPS has gone up to $6.50 (sorry). I also take paypal at that same address for easy payment. Thanks.
  9. From my experience, the original outer sheath of the cable tends to break right next to one of the brackets at the end. It is often the upper one, because the cable flexes inside the steering column "head" (the top part that is pivoting when you tilt the wheel) until the plastic sheath breaks. The brackets are crimped on to the cable housing. So you can uncrimp and then recrimp. The exact spacing between the brackets is as important as the length of the wire between the two bent loops. So measure them before you uncrimp, and reproduce that dimension when you recrimp.
  10. Jim Cannon

    Light switch heats up

    PLUS, check all the connections at the headlight bulbs themselves that they are clean and tight, wires not shorted out to ground somewhere.. Your lights draw a lot of current, especially if you or PO upgraded to halogen bulbs. That's generating the heat in the switch. The headlight switch is fitted with a thermal circuit breaker that automatically resets when it cools off.
  11. Jim Cannon

    63 Suction Throttling Valve

    Bob- Open all the vents for testing and push both A/C knobs all the way in for maximum cooling.. 80 degree air means no cooling at all. Something is not working (compressor problem, expansion valve problem, STV problem). A good technician can diagnose the problem quickly, especially with the shop manual to refer to. That shop manual is very detailed in what to measure, where, when. You should not buy a recovery machine. You can injure yourself if you hook up pressure gauges incorrectly. I don't recommend it. I understand the frustration of having to work through the shop. Perhaps look around for another shop that is comfortable working on old cars. I'm not very impressed with the results from the guy you have been using. This system should be blowing very cold air by now. It's not rocket science.
  12. Jim Cannon

    63 Suction Throttling Valve

    You can disconnect the vacuum actuator on the firewall and pull the lever fully out and tie it off with a piece of wire. Then you know it is open. The other actuator makes no difference to how it cools or where the cold air comes out. It is easy to overfill the system and then it does not cool well. Post the latest high- and low-side pressures, with outside air temperature and the discharge temperature inside in the center vent. You must be using the numbers (pressures at temperatures, etc.) in the shop manual.
  13. I have a small electric fuel pump installed in the fuel line just under the passenger door hinges, powered by a spring loaded switch that I have to hold down to keep the fuel pump running. Before starting the car, I run the fuel pump to fill the carb. You can hear the tone of the fuel pump change when the carb is full and the float needle valves close. Tap the gas pedal a few times to set the choke and turn the key. It starts right up every time. The stock mechanical fuel pump pulls the fuel through the electric fuel pump with no problem. I have used this setup for years. HTH.
  14. You are correct, part of the issue is that you are used to te brighter instrument lights on a modern car. Still, there are a few things you can do to get the lights brighter. 1. Simply replacing the instrument bulbs will help. Pull a few out and look at them. you will see a silvery grey-coating on the inside of the bulb glass. This is tungsten metal that vaporizes off of the filament and deposits on the inside of the glass. this coating makes the bulbs darker. 2. If you are replacing the bulbs anyway, upsize each one by 1 candlepower. Don't go crazy. You will melt the plastic instrument housings. But fresh bulbs that are also 1 cp brighter makes a big difference. I used to have a list of new, brighter bulb numbers but I can't find it. I think it's on the ROA website in the Members Only Technical Reference section. 3. Make sure you have a good ground on the instrument panel. Add another one if you are not sure It can't hurt. The stock ground is through the harness, but you can add another. 4. Look at putting LED replacement lights in there. You can get some pretty bright bulbs in there without them being too hot. I am told they will also dim, if needed. 5. Clean the instrument panel lights rheostat that is built into the headlight switch. It gets corroded and the voltage drop there makes the bulbs dim. I hope this helps.