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.
  1. Rodney- Just as a test, try 24 psi in all 4 tyres and test drive for comfort. There was actually a Technical Service Bulletin issued by Buick on this very topic, advising dealers to check the pressure when a car owner complains about harsh ride quality.
  2. One thing to check, to get an original ride, is the tire pressure. The stock pressure was (I'm doing this from memory) about 24 psi. This adds a lot of softness to the ride. It might lower gas mileage, though. The track bar bushings (the bar that goes side to side, between rear axle and frame) really help reduce sway in the rear of the car when driving. I noticed a big improvement in handling when I replaced the bushings, especially at higher speed. I put in the new polygraphite bushings from P-S-T: https://p-s-t.com/i-23160475-polygraphite-rear-track-bar-bushing-set.html#!year%3D1965||make%3DBUICK||model%3DRIVIERA Their part number POLY37111 Pretty low cost, really. Easy to install. The hardest part is getting the old bushings out!
  3. 63 Turn Signals

    Plan to get a used one out out of a donor car. I might have one in my parts stash, but can't get to it for a few weeks.
  4. 63 Turn Signals

    I have removed the collar/sleeve with a basic gear puller setup to expand out inside the sleeve, to catch on the inside lip of the collar. Look in the shop manual to see where that special tool engages.
  5. Ken- I agree that you should fix and reseal your existing pump. Mine was leaking at the shaft seal. That seal is readily available and easy to replace. You can even do it right on the car. Instructions in the shop manual. Pop the old seal out, use a bit of ATF to lubricate the seal and shaft and slide it right on. Use a deep socket to gently tap it into place. Contact me if you have any questions or problems.
  6. If they are all freed up and working properly, the Riviera has automatic brake adjusters on each wheel. They are activated by applying the brakes rather firmly in reverse. You can not over adjust them, so you can back down your driveway or a street and apply the brakes repeatedly to adjust them all out. They will all be adjusted up correctly by doing that.
  7. Pinging when floored

    Guys, please look in your factory shop manual for YOUR YEAR car/engine. The '63 is setup differently from the '64-'66. Buick provides a graph of advance vs RPM (can be converted to road speed). I have a set-back timing light that allows you to map the degrees of mechanical advance at several different RPMs to reproduce the curve in the shop manual. The advance amount per increase in RPM is controlled by the springs on the centrifugal advance. The bushing controls the maximum advance. '63 should use ported vacuum. I have carbon build up in my heads, so I get higher than stock compression. With that, I have to reduce the initial advance several degrees, or else I ping in summer.
  8. The external vacuum can on a '63 is your reserve vacuum. On the later power brake boosters, they figured out how to keep a stored reserved volume of vacuum in the booster housing itself, to give you a couple of power assisted braking actions after the engine stalls or dies for any reason. After you use that reserve of vacuum up, let me tell you, it's like trying to stop a tank by dragging your feet! No fun!
  9. 1958 Olds 88 4-door

    Selling a really nice, original 1958 Olds 88 4-door. Original paint is thin in a few places, but has really nice patina. This car has not bee restored and could be a really nice original driver. 4-speed Hydramatic transmission. Car is locate in Orlando, Florida. Call my brother for more information (it's his car, but he doesn't really do computers): Kevin Cannon 407-383-2368 He says he also has a second engine and a high performance intake manifold that goes with the car.
  10. To remove and replace the big spring, push nails in between multiple coils until the spring comes off. Attached are 2 photos of Mark Uhlig's original, low miles '63; look at the springs.
  11. Vacuum gauge reading on 401

    This is a problem on the '63 Riv with an original AFB carburetor. The vacuum port for the distributor is "ported". So it is not open to full manifold vacuum at idle. (Other later Rivs are not; this is one of the little differences between '63 and other years that drives the novice crazy.) So vacuum at the distributor port will not be correct (it will be very low). There is no little port on an original '63 AFB with unported vacuum to connect to. The little vacuum port on the front of the intake manifold for the A/C system has a check valve in it. You can't use that. I hate messing with the power brake vacuum line, but you could temporarily connect there, if you wanted to. So the easiest place to pick up full manifold vacuum is on the PCV line off the back of the carby. Use an adapter to "Tee in" a vacuum hose size that your vacuum gauge will connect to. Keep the PCV valve connected (so that idle mixture and RPM are not impacted by your gauge). At idle, you might see 18-20" Hg, but you don't need to see more than 17" Hg. Depending on your cam, you may only see 16". More important is to look for a steady needle at idle and up, at higher RPM, to indicate all valves are moving freely and sealing well. Reading and interpreting vacuum gauge readings is a bit of a learned art. You can do a lot of diagnostics with one, once you learn how.
  12. Carburettor kit for 1963 Riviera

    Rodney- I can help you with the adjustments via a FaceTime-type video chat over the Internet. Let me know when you are ready to do it. Ed is correct, lots of good guidance in the Shop Manual.
  13. Carburettor kit for 1963 Riviera

    Look at RockAuto.com for the carb rebuild kit. Standard Motor Products. They ship to Australia. I do not think they have the choke coil. Do you plan to convert to electric choke? A good used choke coil may be your best bet. Usually it is the little vacuum operated piston inside the choke housing that gets all plugged up with carbon and sticks. The coil is pretty simple and only needs to be replaced when it breaks. Be sure to use the stainless steel plate between carb base and gasket. Not included in kit. I don't remember who sells them.
  14. Ed and all- In that thread I later posted in #8 that my comment only applied to 1963 models, not later models. I do not know how to date later carbs.
  15. A/C tag???

    As I recall, I had one of these glued to to top(?) of my evaporator box, under the glove box. It's been a long time.