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. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Talk to these guys: http://www.rostra.com/universal-aftermarket-cruise-control-by-rostra.php They do not have a unit list explicitly for a '65 or '66 Riv, but I suspect hey can help you work something out. I have a unit like theirs on my '63. You put magnets on the driveshaft with a coil pickup (for road speed). The engine has so much power that, even on the lowest sensitivity, it really jumps up in speed when it falls the least bit behind.
  4. Jim Cannon

    New Old Stock Air

    I would like to see that car, take some photos of it, for documentation purposes. My Aunt, uncle, cousins used to live in Queens. Can you PM me the contact info? Or ask them to contact me?
  5. Jim Cannon

    Mystery pipe

    The excessive fuel consumption could be because this carburetor is calibrated to be too rich for this engine. The spark plugs will also be very black. I prefer to use the correct, original carburetor for the year and engine. It could also be because this engine has so much power that you LOVE stepping down hard and accelerating quickly. That always puts a smile on my face! But it uses a lot of fuel. Also make sure that the engine coolant temperature is getting up to full operating temperature. If the car has no thermostat or if it is stuck open, it will not properly warm up and a lot of fuel is used.
  6. Jim Cannon

    AC vents need advise

    I forgot to mention, the rubber sleeve is glued on to the evaporator housing. It slips over the plenum in the center. You can see a bit of a shiny strip near the rubber. Thats the glue. So when you install the evaporator, you slide the rubber up and over the center air distribution plenum and then place the support straps under the evaporator. Still a pain. You have A/C hoses already connected to the evaporator, so freedom of movement is restricted.
  7. Jim Cannon

    AC vents need advise

    Yes, there is a rubber sleeve. Excuse the mess on my bench.
  8. Jan- Read the owners manual and the service bulletins about this. Buick calls for about 24 psi in the tires, as I recall. This is mentioned in a service bulletin as a source of rough ride complaints by new Riviera owners. BTW, the maximum pressure rating on this type tire is usually about 32 psi, so you are kind of pushing it.
  9. George- In the 1963 Buick Master Chassis Parts Book, the following numbers are listed for the expansion valves. I expect '64 to be the same. Series 4400-4600-4800 Valve, Expansion 6550178 Series 4700 A.C. Valve, Expansion 5910464 So you can see from the above that the Riviera valve is different, per GM. As is often the case, aftermarket people lump all the full-size cars together. I have included here a photo of an OEM TXV. I do not have it, just the picture. I hope this helps.
  10. Old Air Products is up in Dallas/Ft. Worth, not Houston. But as I said before, the STV is not the Expansion Valve that George needs.
  11. The valve with the vacuum diaphragm (flying saucer on top) is the Suction Throttle Valve (STV) not the expansion valve. The expansion valve bolts to the inlet of the evaporator and limits the flow of freon liquid that goes into the core so that it does not freeze up into a solid block of ice. The most important design parameter for this expansion valve is how many degrees of superheat it puts into the freon as it exits the evaporator. I'm doing it from memory, and my reference books are not here with me right now. As I recall, the Riviera valve is a couple of degrees more of superheat. I, too, have had a problem with these aftermarket expansion valves not fitting. I think the fittings on the Riv are different size and gender from the other full-size Buicks of the era. The aftermarket suppliers are providing valve that work on the other models.
  12. Jim Cannon

    Correct finish

    I think the correct finish for the exhaust manifold bolts is "rust". :-D I think the French locks are stainless, no? If not, they will be finished in "rust", too.
  13. Here are 2 photos of the sticker on Mark Uhlig's very low miles original '63. It was built in 3rd week of May. You can see that it is more on the flat underside of the trunk lid. You can see how they changed the shape of the webbing under the lid in the later cars. This is why they moved the sticker off of the center hole. The revised web shape carried forward into '64 and '65.
  14. OK, on your earlier build (the week after my car) it covers the center hole of the webbing of the lid. Attached photo not my car, but typical.
  15. Rodney- It depends on the month/year of manufacture of your car's body. It depends on the shape of the underside of the webbing on your trunk (boot) lid. Post pix.