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About Rusty_OToole

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  1. Rusty_OToole


    I can't speak for every car but Chrysler products of the forties and early fifties came with hardened valves and valve seat inserts. They were made for unleaded gas, at a time when all gas was unleaded or low lead by our standards. The heavily leaded hi octane gas came along in 1954 and 1955. The first car I know of, that had no valve seat inserts and no valve guides was the new 55 Chev V8. I have not made an exhaustive study on this point and don't mind being corrected if anyone has more details. The point is, you only have to worry about 1955 - 1970 models, and not all of them, only the ones with high compression above 9.5:1 or so, usually certain luxury cars or performance cars with optional V8 engine. Most standard cars are fine, although it does not hurt to toss in a little upper cylinder lubricant.
  2. Rusty_OToole

    Vacuum Question for Dort

    Some of those old engines take a long time to warm up completely. There is a lot of iron there. Unlike today's light weight aluminum engines that warm up in minutes. One old timer who drove a Willys Knight 4 cylinder on tours in the sixties and seventies, told me it did not stop burning oil until he drove 60 miles. After that it burned no oil for the rest of the day.
  3. Rusty_OToole

    20" on a 1972 - what will fit?

    You have come to the wrong place. This site is "orthodox" you want "reform". Your best chance is to ask the wheel dealer, they should have the information. If not, they may have to test fit a few wheels to your car.
  4. Rusty_OToole


    Cars up to the early fifties had low compression engines that were made to run on low lead, or no lead gas. They will run fine on modern gas. Where you may run into trouble is on the high compression, high performance models of the fifties and sixties. The heavily leaded high test gas came to market around 1955. 1955 to 1970 models are the ones that suffer from unleaded gas. 1970 and newer models are made to run on unleaded. As far as compression goes, your gas octane rating should look like your compression. In other words if your local gas station sells 87 octane regular gas, and you burn it in a car with 8.7:1 compression or lower it will be fine. Hi test in most places is 92 octane so you are good to about 9.5:1 compression. Only if you have a high performance, muscle car engine with 10:1 compression or higher do you have a problem but such cars are not too common. This is not a hard and fast rule, only a guide. There are other factors that affect the need for high octane fuel but if you keep this in mind you won't go far wrong. The big problem is valve seat recession and valve wear. You can combat this by adding a dash of Redex, Marvel Mystery Oil, Bardahl or your favorite upper cylinder lubricant. This is not absolutely necessary but will make your engine last longer. The introduction of ethanol laced fuels in the mid 80s did result in a rash of fuel pump and carburetor failures due to the alcohol eating up the rubber and plastic parts. But this problem was solved by rebuilding the fuel pump and carb, and installing new neoprene fuel line. Practically all old cars have had this done by now. A little general advice. There was a tremendous advance in car design between the mid forties and mid fifties. You went from the typical car having a flathead six cylinder engine of 80HP and three speed manual trans, with heater and cigar lighter being the deluxe accessories, to relatively modern cars with V8 engines of up to 390HP, auto trans, power steering, power brakes, better brakes, suspension etc etc. This means cars from the late forties and early fifties are happiest on surface streets and 2 lane rural roads, and are not happy on the interstate. While a car from the late fifties might be quite happy driving from coast to coast at 70MPH especially if you add a few improvements like radial tires and modern shock absorbers. On the other hand the older cars are simpler, easier and cheaper to keep in repair. It all depends what kind of car you want. I would also suggest buying the best condition, most original car you can afford. An old car that has been allowed to deteriorate can be an absolute money pit. Even the best require more upkeep than a modern car. Fortunately the old cars are easier and cheaper to work on than the modern ones.
  5. Rusty_OToole

    How do you deal with an unresponsive seller?

    It wasn't a lie. I was looking at 2 or 3 different cars. My first choice, the owner turned down my offer because he had only started advertising it a few days before and there were plenty of other people interested. I told him to call me if the other buyers didn't pan out and left my phone number. Then I went and bought my second choice car, an MGB that needed a lot of work, but that I got at a very attractive price. That is why I had enough money to buy the other car, although not as much as I originally offered. You don't have to lie. You also don't have to repeat the same offer after they turned it down. You can start over with a brand new offer. That is the point. If someone turns down my offer hoping for a better one, and no better offer turns up, that is a sign my offer was too high to begin with. You don't often get a call back in these circumstances but if you do it usually means the seller is ready to talk turkey.
  6. Rusty_OToole

    Do You Remember When Edsels Were New? What Did You Think?

    To understand the Edsel you have to know something about the car market in the postwar period. In the late forties and early fifties there was a lot of demand for medium priced cars and deluxe editions of regular cars. In 1953 or 54 Buick outsold Plymouth, in other words an eight cylinder car at the top of the medium price bracket outsold one of the low priced three. This was unprecedented. Before the war, the best selling cars were the cheapest black sedans. Suddenly the bigger more expensive cars were outselling the economy models. A lot of people don't know that Ford Motor Company slipped to third place in sales behind General Motors and Chrysler in the forties. Ford always outsold Plymouth by 2 to 1 while Chrysler was very strong in the medium priced field with Dodge, DeSoto and the Chrysler sixes perennial best sellers. Both GM and Chrysler had 5 different makes to sell while Ford had only 3. Mercury was Ford's only medium priced offering. If a Ford owner didn't happen to like the Mercury it was a big step up to a Lincoln while GM offered a choice of Pontiac, Oldsmobile, and Buick while Chrysler had the Dodge, DeSoto and Chrysler. Mercury was Ford's sole medium priced make, and it switched from a super deluxe Ford to a junior Lincoln in 1949, then back to a super deluxe Ford in 1952. This reflects the confusion in planning and marketing at Ford in those days. Ford's top management decided in the mid fifties that they needed to revise their lineup entirely, especially the medium priced bracket which as I said, were best sellers at the time. Their new strategy was to keep Ford as the low priced line, add a new medium priced car, move Mercury up from a Pontiac competitor to the Buick class, and make a bigger Lincoln to compete with Cadillac. The new car was to cover the medium priced field from Pontiac/Dodge to Oldsmobile/ Chrysler. They planned 4 models, two based on the Ford platform and 2 on the Mercury. This involved making an entirely new Mercury that owed nothing to Ford, and this new Mercury debuted in 1957. After much work and market research they boiled down the list of possible names to four - Ranger, Pacer, Corsair, and Citation. Henry Ford II didn't want any of them, he wanted the car named after his father Edsel. The marketing people were in agony. They tested the name Edsel with the public and it meant nothing. It reminded them of things like "dead cell" and "red cell". Hardly anyone outside the auto industry had even heard of Edsel Ford. But, Henry called the shots and Edsel it was. Ranger, Pacer, Corsair and Citation became model names. The Ranger and Pacer being the Ford based models and the others based on the larger Mercury platform. So that was the master plan for the late fifties and beyond. How could they know that the country would hit a recession just as the new line was introduced and big cars became stinko. This is why they dumped everything except the Ford as fast as they could. After 1960 there was no more Edsel and no more separate body for Mercury. Mercury went back to being Ford based and the Lincoln was downsized drastically. Instead they came out with a series of smaller cars, the Falcon, Fairlane, Mercury Comet and Meteor, later the Mustang and Cougar. So there is the story of a marketing plan that backfired and how they got out of it.
  7. Rusty_OToole

    How do you deal with an unresponsive seller?

    For the more advanced traders. I have had sellers turn down my offer and later contact me changing their mind. When that happens I always reply that I bought another car in the meantime but would still like to buy theirs, but can only afford X ( a lower offer). I usually end up getting the car for less than I offered in the first place.
  8. Rusty_OToole

    Do You Remember When Edsels Were New? What Did You Think?

    As far as the Edsel being a giant Ford blunder. You should keep in mind that between 1955 and 1965 Ford brought out 5 completely new cars, the Thunderbird, Edsel, Falcon, Fairlane and Mustang. Every one was a smash hit except the Edsel. If a Hollywood director made 5 movies in 10 years and 4 out of 5 were hits he would be remembered as the greatest genius in show business. Yet for some reason they still talk about the Edsel and forget the others.
  9. Rusty_OToole

    Do You Remember When Edsels Were New? What Did You Think?

    The spoiled egotistical guy was Henry Ford II. He named the car after his father Edsel Ford who died in 1943.
  10. Rusty_OToole

    Do You Remember When Edsels Were New? What Did You Think?

    The Edsel was a fancy medium priced car that had the misfortune to come out at the time that the public taste was turning away from such cars, and toward small economy cars, imports and compact cars. It failed to sell because it was the wrong kind of car for the times. Notice that the year they dropped the Edsel they introduced the Falcon and it was a smash hit. I think the Edsel was well received on its introduction but when it failed to sell became the butt of jokes, and everyone was looking for something to pin the blame on, usually something superficial like its looks. Somehow the critics failed to notice that sales of such well established medium priced cars as Oldsmobile Packard Nash and DeSoto crashed about the same time, with fatal results to all but Oldsmobile. I was seven years old when the Edsel debuted and don't remember anything about it. I do remember seeing a row of 5 or 6 brand new Rancheros on a Ford dealer's lot and being mighty impressed.
  11. Rusty_OToole

    Motometer Red Line

    My thought is to tie it to a string and whirl it around for a few minutes. You would have to rig it so the meter is bottom outwards, and make sure it can't come loose or hit anything, use a strong cord or light chain and wrap it up in some kind of padded bag just in case.
  12. Rusty_OToole

    49 Chrysler Straight 8 Overheating

    I have a special tool for installing core plugs, a wrist pin out of a WW2 radial aircraft engine. It is about 1" diameter 5" long steel and has aluminum plugs in each end. If I don't have it handy I will put the flat face of a ball peen hammer against the plug and whack it with another ball peen hammer.
  13. Rusty_OToole

    Tire pressure

    Further research reveals that no Chrysler came with 650X20 tires at least none that I can find.Closest is the 1928 Imperial six that came with 6.75X20. They weighed from 3870 to 4300 pounds. OP does not state year, model, body style or any other relevant information so I will guess some things. Let's take a typical touring car that weighs 4000 pounds with 4 passengers and baggage totaling 800 pounds, giving a GVW of 4800 pounds. Assuming weight distribution of 40/60 front/rear that works out to 28 pounds in the front tires and 43 in the back. With 2 passengers, 40 pounds. For a soft ride you could drop it to 25 front/ 35 rear or for high speed travel, increase to 30 to 32 front and 44 rear, more if the car is heavily loaded. That is the best estimate I can do on the limited information given. This is purely theoretical. Feedback from experienced drivers of late twenties luxury cars would be appreciated.
  14. Rusty_OToole

    49 Chrysler Straight 8 Overheating

    You can get new core plugs for a few bucks at any auto parts store. They are a standard fitting, used on many engines. Choice of cup or disc type, in various diameters. Just get the same kind and size as the old ones.
  15. Rusty_OToole

    Tire pressure

    650X20 is more like a 1930 ish tire size.