Kosage Chavis

1955 Buick general questions

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Anyone know what type of socket to use to remove spark plugs on a 1955 322 engine?  All of the sockets I have are to big in diameter to clear the spark plug bore.  Thank you.

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Find yourself a thin wall socket, the bore is just a bit too small. Or sand down your old one. 

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7 minutes ago, Beemon said:

Find yourself a thin wall socket, the bore is just a bit too small. Or sand down your old one. 

Where can you find a thin walled socket?

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Google: 13/16 thin wall socket...

But it is easy enough to grind down:  apply to turning grinding wheel with the socket attached to an impact wrench.

If the cavities in the head are dirty, any socket will stick.

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Questions concerning the bench testing of a starter motor.  20180703_195233.thumb.jpg.cd8825d81bd21a6161eaab1823f8ba54.jpg

 

20180703_195205.thumb.jpg.f86012973683a93dec4b6db00a8b9d84.jpg

Question is, can I bench test even with one of the smaller connection points broken off?

 

If so, what points do I use to hook up to the battery? 

 

How do I repair the solenoid, or does it simply require replacement?

 

What should I be looking for when testing the starter for proper operation (other than the obvious things like gear kick out and rotation)?  

 

Thank you all for any advice.

 

 

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Rotate the bendix clutch (big drum behind the gear) and check for smoothness.

 

When you're checking the solenoid, there's only really two things to check for and that's if it spins and throws out. Not much more to it than that really. You'd be best to open it up and replace the brushes and polish the armature and commutator. 

 

With the bakelite destroyed, you do need a new solenoid.. or at least a new cap. 

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4 hours ago, Kosage Chavis said:

What about connection points?  There are 4 altogether.  Which ones do I hook up to the battery?

Battery to the big one, then start switch to one of the small ones.   The other small one goes to the ignition coil.  There should be a letter next to the unbroken connection....

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22 minutes ago, wndsofchng06 said:

Battery to the big one, then start switch to one of the small ones.   The other small one goes to the ignition coil.  There should be a letter next to the unbroken connection....

What about when the starter is out of the car and you are connecting straight to the battery?

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Same principle....clean a place on the starter to ground,  run a positive cable to the open, large comnector on the solenoid, then jump to the appropriate smaller connector to throw the solenoid.    I believe there's an "s" and and "i" or maybe "r" next to smaller terminals...

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Its simple, B+ to the big top stud

 

B- to the body of the stater

 

A small wire attached to the one remaining stud

 

Hang onto the starter (I put my foot on them) or have it firmly in a vice

 

Touch the small wire to the B+ and the solenoid should kick the pinion out and the armature should start spinning

 

The mentioned ignition terminal on the starter is an output for the ignition or ballast bypass and wont stop the starter from

working, but normally should be tested to make sure it works

 

As said, better to go through the starter anyway (it looks ratty) or buy a new one.

 

I found that the starter from an "International" (brand from International Harvester if your not familiar with it) is the same except the nose cone which

is easily swapped and a bolt hole in the field housing that supports the P clamp for the B+ cable. This was all on my 58 364, so it might be different

 

 

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The small terminals are marked S and R.

 

The S terminal is what you apply +12 volts to to engage the solenoid.

 

The R terminal is to bypass the ignition resistor during cranking. No need to hook any wire here during testing.

 

If the S terminal is the one missing, time for a solenoid.

 

P.S., B+ in your case is +12 volts. B- is ground (negative battery terminal).

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20 hours ago, Frank DuVal said:

 

 

23 hours ago, Ttotired said:

 

 

23 hours ago, wndsofchng06 said:

 

 

On 7/4/2018 at 1:35 PM, Beemon said:

 

Did exactly as you all suggested.  Thank you for your help by the way.  Performed the test.  Two things happened...the wire arced out and the motor gave a very small jolt, as if it wanted to spin but was stuck.  The S terminal was still intact and was tested, but the solenoid did not kick out.  Not sure if you can fix a solenoid, but I definitely need to open the motor.

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You can buy solenoid repair kits bit they're hard to come by and maybe just a bit less expensive than an actual solenoid. The armature not spinning is most likely the brushes. You can test the motor directly by grounding the case and applying 12V to the armature terminal (bypasses solenoid). If it still doesn't spin, then it should be inspected and cleaned. If you notice any broken copper wires, the armature needs to be replaced or repaired by someone who can rewind it. Hopefully it's just brushes! 

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The solenoid did not kick out (in)?

 

Yeah, it looked too rusty. Theres probably nothing really wrong. Take it off of there. The plunger and spring should come out. Clean it all up. Take the back (bakelite) cover off. take the nuts off of the little terminal remaining and the big bolt on the bottom that goes to the starter motor. Then you should be able to take the bakelite thing off. There is a spring loaded copper disc in there, and you should be able to take it out. It is mounted on a pin that has to be able to move. It is also spring loaded on the pin, and that has to move.

 

Check both windings on the solenoid for continuity with a multimeter. Measure from the little terminal to the solenoid case (this is the hold-in winding). Measure from the little terminal to the big terminal that connects to the starter (pull-in coil). If these are both ok, the solenoid is fine.

 

Look at the two copper bolts. They might be hosed. Maybe not. The copper disc comes back when the solenoid pulls in and shorts the two bolts together. Over time, the heads of the bolts burn off, and the copper disc can no longer reach them. On some versions of the GM solenoid, you can turn the bolts 180 degrees and get a second life out of them. Maybe someone already did that. As long as the disc hasn't burned the bolt heads way down on the side of the bolt head that is in use, you are good to go.

 

You probably do need to change that bakelite piece. The missing terminal sends 12v to the ignition while cranking. Does your Buick use that? It probably does, and it improves starting a lot when the battery is a little down.

 

Inside the starter, look at the brushes, bushings, and starter drive (gear).

 

If the bushings are shot, you will be able so see a shaft-shaped bunch of wear on the side of the bushing that was taking all the thrust. Check them for looseness too. If you don't see that wear pattern, they are probably fine. Sometimes new replacements will be looser than originals, if the originals don't have a bunch of wear.

 

Look at some new brushes online. Judge yours by length. If they are really super-short, get new ones. The brushes would have to "wear in" to match the curve of the commutator, and that much wear happens really fast. If your old brushes only have that much wear, consider them new.

 

Grab the starter drive by the round part and turn the gear part. You should be able to turn it one way, but not the other.

 

Shine up the commutator with emery cloth, wipe it off with alcohol or brake kleen or something to get rid of the grit. Put the armature in the tailpiece, and get the brushes in. Thats the fiddly part because there are usually four of them and they are spring loaded. Once you have the brushes in, drop the field coils over the top and then put the nosepiece on last.

 

Lastly, there is an adjustment (I think) for how far the solenoid pulls. The plunger should be threaded where it attaches to the linkage. The shop manual will show you how to set it. There should probably be a boot over the solenoid plunger. It looks like it takes the same one as a prewar Buick starter. If so, Bob's has them.

 

 

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Mr Lamar, would it be asking too much if you could dust off and post some pictures of your rear speaker knob (at different angles including backside).  One of our Buick friends, Mr Al, put me onto a website that specializes in antique radio knobs.  Here is a picture of both Mr Paul's and yours...Screenshot_20180706-162811.thumb.png.99cafc4d4c2de2466de3e30398ae51a3.png20171213_235025.jpg.28aeb7ac6da505dfd652f6edfeab0fd7.jpg

 

 

Now, here's a few knobs from that website...Screenshot_20180706-140250.thumb.png.096f10bb02465ae7f11409b3817be619.png

 

Some look identical.  Especially the black one pictured at the top left hand side.  This would be a huge help to me and hopefully gets me a step closer to finding this illusive knob.  Thank you so much!

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Kosage, I’ve dug through my parts closet twice looking for that switch and can’t find it. That’s the only picture I have of it  I think. 

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47 minutes ago, MrEarl said:

Kosage, I’ve dug through my parts closet twice looking for that switch and can’t find it. That’s the only picture I have of it  I think. 

That's okay Mr Lamar.  What do you think of the picture of the knobs compared to you and Mr Paul's?

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assuming the 2nd one down in left column has a set screw in it I would say it would be close enough for BCA judging.

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On 7/6/2018 at 7:35 PM, MrEarl said:

assuming the 2nd one down in left column has a set screw in it I would say it would be close enough for BCA judging.

All have set screws and are made from bakelite.  I think I am going to buy an assortment.  I will then post pictures and have you help me pick out the correct one...or the one closest to correct.  Is that cool?

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How pricey are they.

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1 hour ago, MrEarl said:

How pricey are they.

Very cheap Mr Lamar.  I am going to buy an assortment between 4 different black ones.  The differences are very subtle which is why I was hoping you and whoever else has knowledge of this part on Buicks could help me.  The guy was going to charge me 1 dollar per knob, but that was for just 1 particular knob.  It might vary a bit on the price for the others.  He has a 20 dollar minimum.  So I will be buying at least 15.  If you'd like, I can send you a few when I get them.  I will let you know.

Edited by Kosage Chavis (see edit history)

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30 minutes ago, Bloo said:

Is this what you re looking for? PM me an address if so...

Exactly what I was looking for, but as you already know a package came in today.  I really appreciate your offer and time.

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