Matt Harwood

1935 Lincoln K V12 Club Sedan

Recommended Posts

All this talk of fuel pumps! I'm still waiting for water pump parts, so I installed the electric fuel pump today. The V12 starts well, but I did notice after that hot drive that it was hard to start the next day (the fuel had boiled out of the carburetor bowl). It took quite a while to pump some fresh fuel up there. In addition, when it was running so hot, it was starting to stumble and the fuel lines were almost too hot to touch, so the gas was likely boiling inside. Although not a cure, an electric fuel pump can only help in these situations. I don't want to argue the merits of electric fuel pumps and how the cars worked fine without them, because they obviously can help with today's gas and in cars that sit a lot. I have them in all my cars and they do help starting and hot running.

 

I use the Airtex E8902, which is a 6 volt pump with a rated output of 4 PSI (it's actually 2.5-4.5 PSI if you read the fine print). That's pretty good for most carbureted applications. It's a draw-through pump, so your mechanical pump will be able to pull gas through it when it's not running, so no bypass line is required. It's also extremely quiet (more on this in a moment) and easy to install. Oh, and it costs less than $35. I don't really see a downside to using it and while I've never had a failure, at that price I carry a spare in my cars' trunks.

 

ATX-E8902_xl.jpg?rep=False
Airtex fuel pump comes fairly complete, including a filter

 

The Lincoln install was straightforward, especially since it's a negative ground system (if you have a positive ground system, you might need to swap the wires--Airtex has details in their instructions). It's always best to install the electric fuel pump as far back by the tank as possible so that it can push the fuel--electric pumps are not very good at pulling. The Lincoln has a perfect spot inside the frame by the tank, complete with a nice mounting hole for the bracket. The fuel line is 5/16 and the smaller line running underneath is the capillary tube for the fuel gauge, which isn't working but I figure that line should stay just the same. I removed one of the brackets that hold these two lines to the frame and cut the fuel line with a tubing cutter. That allowed me to remove the line from the tank and re-route it a bit and to clean out the burr that the tubing cutter leaves inside the line (you can do this with a round file--just be sure to blow it out before you reinstall it so you don't suck chips into the carburetor).

 

7-4-18no2.thumb.jpg.36d304c0edfa29e95bcb4ce8f3d22dd0.jpg.7-4-18no1.thumb.jpg.b20047743a1faee05d86614fd551a70b.jpg 
Original fuel line routing and tank connection. The smaller tube is the capillary tube for the fuel gauge

 

I like to put a slight flare on the line when using rubber hoses to help them seal up and keep the hose clamps in place, not so big that it stresses the rubber and I always use a file or some sandpaper to round the edges so it won't cut. Some guys like to run hard lines directly into the pump, but I've had both copper and brass lines get work hardened and crack just from the vibrations of the pump, so I like using the rubber lines as insulation. And while the fuel pump comes with a mounting bracket, I added a little strip of rubber inside to further insulate the pump and cut down on noise. It fits, although getting the mounting holes to line up is a bit of a pain. 

 

7-4-18no3.thumb.jpg.df3dd42706cd18a2d62e39be69d34e40.jpg 7-4-18no5.thumb.jpg.3548c45089aa7640fe01bc3ff9ebe544.jpg 7-4-18no4.thumb.jpg.e6f29320279176679bc26daa692dcf48.jpg
Fuel pump mounted. I like to put a flare on the lines to help keep the rubber lines in place. Note that I slightly re-routed the line from the fuel tank
to the pump (behind the fuel tank bracket instead of ahead of it) to keep the rubber line as straight as possible.

 

I did the same for the output line, although it was a little more challenging to put the flare on the line while I was under the car. You'll also need to install the hose barb fittings on the pump itself, so be sure to use some sealer on the threads. The Airtex pump has a separate ground wire and since I just upgraded all the grounds on the car, I knew the frame would be as clean a ground as any. I installed a round terminal on the end of the ground wire and sealed it with shrink tubing. I drilled a 1/4-inch hole and tapped it for 1/4-28 threads, which were the original threads for the fuel line bracket screw (whose hole I commandeered for the fuel pump bracket). I reinstalled the bracket to secure the fuel gauge line properly and secured the ground wire underneath after using a wire wheel to clean the frame to bare metal. A dab of dielectric grease and I tightened it in place using the original screw and a new lock washer. 

 

7-4-18no6.thumb.jpg.ea778eadd5c4fcf7493cf5951422ff7a.jpg

I re-used the original bracket for the fuel gauge line and
it doubles as the ground for the fuel pump

 

The second part of the job is getting power to the pump and deciding whether you want to put it on a switch or use some other method. I chose a simple toggle switch for this installation so I can turn it on when I need it but leave it off most of the time. I really insist on being careful and doing a good job on projects like this--I've had too many cars where some hack mechanic has buggered everything up and I curse their names every time I have to sort through their crappy handiwork. Don't be that guy; do the best you possibly can every time. We have all kinds of wire around the shop, and I initially figured I'd use some black plastic 14-gauge wire we have on a big spool, but that wouldn't look right and black for power and black for ground might confuse some future caretaker. Instead I grabbed some yellow cloth-covered wire I had left over from my '41 Buick fog light installation. I also had some black cloth 14-gauge wire, which will come in handy as you'll see.

 

7-4-18no11.thumb.jpg.ce8484c3cc1c4add5a65239e61a23776.jpg
14-gauge cloth-covered wire will look right in the Lincoln

 

I found a 15-amp toggle switch in our electrical box, and that's more than sufficient for the fuel pump--it only draws about 6 amps at full load. I didn't want to drill holes in the dash, even underneath, so I made a bracket and screwed it to a piece of structural wood on the side of the cowl under the dash. Still easy to reach but well out of sight and no cutting of metal involved. Actually, this was the hardest part of the job--that wood is so old that it's like iron. I knocked the threads off a screw before deciding to drill pilot holes for them. 

 

7-4-18no7.thumb.jpg.9fe7f9740e175ee942c3969c459b82b6.jpg
15-amp switch and the small bracket I made to hold it

 

I spent a considerable amount of time thinking about where to pull power for the pump. The easiest and most common place is the ignition switch--it's easy to reach, it has 6V, and anything connected to it is turned off with the ignition. I don't like to do it simply because it tends to overload the switch as more accessories are added. However, this Lincoln has nothing else attached there, just the main power wire, so I felt safe using the +6V lug on the switch to power the fuel pump. I made a lead wire, choosing black cloth wire instead of the yellow, just to keep it out of sight since the back of the ignition switch is somewhat visible from the front seat. I use shrink tubing on all my connections rather than those bright plastic collars, which just look cheap and don't do much to keep moisture out. For the toggle switch, I also added a second larger section of shrink wrap on each wire with what I call a "legging" to protect the terminal itself. That way nothing under the dash brushing up against it will short it out. 

 

7-4-18no12.thumb.jpg.24dc42711bf04058dbc285623b3e04b9.jpg7-4-18no8.thumb.jpg.1f411e8dc15fc8a0404c90d62282bc3b.jpg
 Lead wire for ignition switch. Note the 90-degree bend, which makes it fit neatly. Toggle switch

mounted and powered. Note the second toggle switch under the dash, which controls the instrument

lights. I have no idea what the "R" is for, since it's on the left side of the car.

 

The final step was simply feeding the yellow wire through the firewall and back to the fuel pump. It's worthwhile to find a safe spot to pass it through so it won't be too visible and won't be vulnerable to damage. I decided to feed it through with a bundle of other wires, then fed it alongside the main power wire from the starter solenoid. There are nice metal and rubber wire clamps on the firewall so I tucked it in neatly so it wouldn't stand out (it's pretty bright while the rest of the wiring is older). I vowed to make this installation look as factory as possible, but plastic zip-ties are so damned handy that it just makes sense to use them where they won't be seen. I don't need the wires moving around and touching something hot. I routed the power wire alongside the fuel line on the passenger side of the car, securing it with more zip-ties as I went. At least they're black so they're not real noticeable. There's a junction for the mechanical brake pivot on the frame and while the fuel line and fuel gauge line fit above, I didn't want to risk the wire--it was pretty tight. Instead I ran it down and around the junction and I'll secure it with a proper clamp when I get one--all I have are plastic and that wouldn't look right. I'll figure it out tomorrow.

 

7-4-18no10.thumb.jpg.88a50bcc29257903a30b2bca5e0e6538.jpg
Wire routed around brake system pivot. I'll add a clamp of some
sort to secure it properly.

 

Last step is connecting power to the pump, which I did with a simple butt connector and some more heat-shrink tubing. I tucked the wire under the open end of the clamp that isn't holding the fuel line anymore and it should be secure there. 

 

7-4-18no9.thumb.jpg.39e05094488c168621166d726749f775.jpg
Connect power to the fuel pump. I secured the wire
under the clamp where the fuel line used to go.

 

Finally, test the system. I turned on the main battery switch, hit the ignition switch, and flipped the fuel pump toggle. I could hear a faint buzz as the pump came online, but as soon as the lines were pressurized, it became almost silent although I could still feel it working through the metal lines. I put the car back in the air and examined all the joints for leaks, including the carburetor and mechanical fuel pump, just to make sure they weren't being overwhelmed by the electric pump. I let it run for about two minutes and not a drop was spilled. Success! 

 

Altogether, I think this job took about five hours, which included sitting and thinking about routing lines, wires, and mounting the toggle, plus lunch. It always takes longer than expected--I was hoping to work on the '29 Cadillac's leaf springs today as well, but after this job, I was just out of energy.

 

We should have water pump supplies tomorrow or Friday so I can get started on the cooling system this weekend. 

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One of my favorite things here at the shop is when the UPS man shows up. It's like Christmas every day. Sometimes it's boring stuff like office supplies, but it's usually car parts. No matter what car, it's always fun to get new stuff that you can use to fix something up. Today my friend Jim from UPS dropped off a set of ignition wire conduits for the Lincoln. Nice!

 

These were one of my biggest concerns with the car--those chrome tubes that the plug wires live inside. My car didn't come with them and I hate how the wires look just laying on the head like that. I figured they'd be unobtainium and even looked at making my own out of stainless tubing--it certainly can't be hard. These pieces really make a difference and my car still has the brackets that hold the conduit, so it should be easy enough to install. I started looking at tubing benders and seamless stainless tubing and whether I could borrow someone's set to get some dimensions and make a pattern. A bit of a pain, but a manageable project that I could tackle on a Saturday.

 

347a09e726db05c7d83958225192cd65-700.jpg 5aa97162512c0_1935LincolnKSedan-38.thumb.jpg.9fdca6e3ea8bb9c21a994ca1f7949c96.thumb.jpg.01405581cb83631272e034b0460e1216.jpg
How it should look vs. how it actually does look

 

But then I got very lucky and a set showed up on eBay for a VERY reasonable price and I grabbed them. That's what arrived today. 

 

PlugConduit1.thumb.jpg.de4ed8360fc2f95e69f0fd028cd461f6.jpg
Original conduit in great condition--with a bit of patina

 

They seem to be made of aluminum, not steel or stainless as I believed. They look like they were originally plated but on these some of the plating has worn off. That's actually better. I had Michael give them a quick polish just to see how they'd look and I'm pretty happy with them as-is, although I think we could put them on the buffing wheel and make them shine like chrome without too much effort. However, that might not be appropriate--the engine bay certainly isn't perfect, and while we're going to do a few things to tidy it up, fresh, shiny conduit would be out of place. Instead, they now look about right for the rest of the engine bay. No kinks, no bends, no broken parts, which is a nice plus, and the soft shine and patina looks authentic. I already bought new plug wires (yellow with red and black tracers because I like a little flash) so I'll add this job to my list of projects to finish before next Saturday's Grand Classic. At the very least, I'm eager to get these installed and clean up that engine bay a little more. Very exciting!

 

PS: Do you have any idea how expensive chrome acorn nuts are?!? $5 each?!? Are they crazy?

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So you didn't have a spool of 22 gauge speaker wire laying around? ;)

 

Joking aside... very nice job making that electrically correct and look period correct.

 

 

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, my water pump stuff didn't show up in time but I figured I'd still clean the cooling system and get that process started. I read a lot about various ways to flush the cooling system and came up with a few ideas of my own. First I was going to remove all the hoses and flush the engine and radiator separately so they don't blow the junk back downstream.

 

I started with the radiator. I attached a pair of plastic hoses to the radiator input spouts and left the radiator cap in place. Since I'd be back-flushing the radiator from the bottom, I didn't want whatever was in there spraying all over the engine bay. Instead it would be directed onto the ground. The lower hose is giant (2.5 inches) so I bought a rubber plug at Home Depot that would fit in there. I drilled two holes in it, one for a nozzle from the garden hose and one for my air gun. I also put a Y-fitting on the hose so I could split it between the top and bottom, the thought being that I didn't want to blast any debris up into the radiator so with water flowing down, any debris would just come loose and flow out the bottom when I pulled the plug.

 

7-7-18no1.thumb.jpg.754daa0c377c65b76eb2971367e7a640.jpg 7-7-18no2.thumb.jpg.1af93b00a5ca86242361be4027376f64.jpg
There was a small amount of rusty crud in the outlet tube on the driver's side, but pretty minor.

 

I turned on the hose and started doing some quick, light shots on the air gun with about 50 PSI running through it (I didn't want to blow a hole in the radiator with high pressure). The radiator filled and water started flowing out of the upper outlets and down the tubes and... it's crystal clear. Huh. So I pull the plug and let it drain. It drains in a matter of seconds and... crystal clear. I made a rubber hose attachment for my air gun and punched a bunch of holes in it, fed it into the lower tank, and plug the hose back in place with the hose flowing in from the top and tried blasting some air across the bottom of the tank. More clear water. What the...?

 

7-7-18no3.thumb.jpg.54eacde2c3ad6c5f81c003f4db900e69.jpg

Plastic tubing keeps back-flushing from making a mess.

 

OK, I guess the radiator is clean. How about the block? There's surely a reason why it was running so hot. There was a little rust around the outlet tubes when I pulled the hoses, so maybe there's some junk in there. I put the hose and my air gun down the right side outlet tube and clear water started running out the bottom of the water pump inlet. So as a last resort, I removed the manifold between the upper block, the crankcase, and the water pump to get access to all the internal passages. Actually, it's a very impressive bronze casting, so while I had it off, I put it on the wire wheel and gave it a coat of satin black paint and cleaned up the mounting points. I'll reinstall it with some RTV sealant.

 

7-7-18no4.thumb.jpg.d91712266007451c7d027b79249ed3e0.jpg 7-7-18no5.thumb.jpg.9e356640b6b5f05d625ff717f12c14bd.jpg
I removed the manifold between the block, crankcase, and water pump. I put a plastic bag
over the starter to keep it from getting soaked.

 

7-7-18no6.thumb.jpg.39a9022069e1bf1228b5e8090136edfe.jpg 7-7-18no7.thumb.jpg.b6672accf9be0bb49906af203ec1b703.jpg

At least I could repaint the water pump manifold. But looking at the water passages
it's obviously clean inside. 

 

But again, no junk coming out. This cooling system is CLEAN. So at this point, my theory is that it was simply low on coolant due to the water pump leak. I'm still going to run the Evapo-Rust through the system once I have the water pump sealed up with new packing, but I don't expect it to do much. It's clean in there. It takes eight gallons of coolant, so I'm going to use 3 gallons of anti-freeze and 5 gallons of distilled water, which is a little less than a 50/50 mix, but it should improve thermal transfer without losing the benefits of anti-freeze. So we'll see what happens with the water pump and go from there.

 

Another thought--could the water pump impeller not be turning? I guess I'll have to wait until I fill it back up and can start the car to see if it's flowing. I guess it's good news that it's clean in there, not a mess. We'll see what happens with fresh coolant.

 

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

But is it clean? My radiator came out a bit dirty, but was blocked in the bottom of the tubes in a triangle shape up into the middle of the radiator. Air sparging and back and forward flushing as you have done didn't move it. Try an IR thermometer when it is hot to see if there are any cool areas - those places will be blocked.

 

The block was a bit gunky but the worst of it required a good scratch around at the back of the block inside the core plugs. No amount of Evapo-Rust or air sparging or pressure washing would move it. Mechanical digging was required; it was like soft hardened cement.

 

Hopefully your Lincoln is not like mine was.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

But is it clean? My radiator came out a bit dirty, but was blocked in the bottom of the tubes in a triangle shape up into the middle of the radiator. Air sparging and back and forward flushing as you have done didn't move it. Try an IR thermometer when it is hot to see if there are any cool areas - those places will be blocked.

 

The block was a bit gunky but the worst of it required a good scratch around at the back of the block inside the core plugs. No amount of Evapo-Rust or air sparging or pressure washing would move it. Mechanical digging was required; it was like soft hardened cement.

 

Hopefully your Lincoln is not like mine was.

 

I believe it to be clean. Look again at the outlets in the block and crankcase. I was able to feed a small rubber hose across the bottom of the radiator tank and blow air up across the entire core. There was nothing blocking it at all. I stuck my fingers up in there (the lower radiator opening is 2.5 inches) and could feel nothing and there was not a speck of rust on my fingers. Every drop of liquid that came out of this cooling system was clear and free of rust or discoloration. The engine is rumored to have been recently rebuilt, so I'm hoping that is true and that the vital parts were hot tanked and the radiator was out of the car and cleaned. 

 

Right now, my theory on why it got so hot was simply that it was low on coolant. We topped it off, but if you look through the recent threads, you'll find another Lincoln K owner who reported that after removing his water pump and reinstalling it, his car was blowing steam within a half mile. This thing takes EIGHT GALLONS of coolant and he discovered that although the radiator appeared to be full, he was maybe two or three gallons low. Once he "burped" the system, it filled up and the problem vanished. I suspect we had the same issue and it was insufficiently full. The leaky water pump filled a 5-gallon drain pan overnight, so I bet it was quite low. 

 

Once I fix the leak in the water pump (tomorrow) I'll fill it by the gallon and make sure it takes all eight gallons, then re-evaluate. At the moment, I've decided not to run the Evapo-Rust, just water until we can determine whether the water pump is healthy.

 

We'll see.

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Xclnt. My thermostat had no hole or bypass for initial flow so it got an air bubble under it when refilling. It would not open. I drilled a wee hole in it to pass a modicum of water, so at least the air escaped, the system filled with water and enough flowed to heat the thermostat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I did go to the shop to do some work on the car today, although there wasn't much remaining without some supplies like the water pump packing. Still, I found a few tasks. First was to reinstall the brass manifold on the water pump so the sealant has time to set up (it needs 24 hours). That was easy enough.

 

070818no7.thumb.jpg.e9827fd2b9f18733b56f02f022fe41b7.jpg
Manifold reinstalled

 

I also went to the auto parts store and bought some new upper radiator hoses--remarkably enough, there's fuel line that's cloth-wrapped and with a 1.25-inch inside diameter that fits perfectly. I removed the printing on the hose by hitting it with some lacquer thinner and a Scotch-Brite pad--I hate seeing old cars with modern hoses with writing all over them. Unfortunately, I don't have correct hose clamps, so I had to re-use the crappy modern ones. I'll get some correct ones now that I know what size I need. And I took Grimy's advice and installed some panty hose in the upper outlets to catch any junk before it goes in the radiator. That'll be interesting.

 

070818no5.thumb.jpg.9507e9e459e773dbf2c3673dc0bb5bad.jpg 070818no4.thumb.jpg.795b50e544bc7b74afd27920bc819b4e.jpg
New cloth-wrapped radiator hoses look right. Now I need correct hose clamps. Note
pantyhose "filter" in the upper hose.

 

Since getting the car, I thought the front end was kind of plain and the headlights themselves are a little on the small side. I don't want to get into the fog lights/trunk/whitewalls discussion, but I am firmly in the camp that likes whitewalls and accessory lights on big Classics.It's how they looked when I was a kid and could only dream of having such a car (my father only bought crummy cars), so that's how my cars look. I like the lights, OK? I bought these because they look suitably vintage and have those cool V-shaped lenses, which are glass, not plastic. They are not expensive (well, $300) nor are they exactly period-correct, but they look right, they're big, they're unusual, and they have no markings of any kind to give them away. I think they look great on the front of the big Lincoln, although the effect is kind of blunted by the fact that I removed the headlight buckets and sent them to the paint shop. I didn't wire them yet, but I'll do that when I have some spare time (lol, right!).

 

1935-Lincoln-K-Sedan-6-762x456.jpg.e9ef077225682b69e9221569e9287638.jpg

 

080718no1.thumb.jpg.67bae025404c4ceebfcd9cd8dc577550.jpg070818no2.thumb.jpg.ddfe8ea92d7db4f8be095818a66179e4.jpg 070818no3.thumb.jpg.bb0e4db0c7325e1ecf7ccf3fcee83c6f.jpg
I think fog lights dress up the front end and I like the design of these lights I found. They look appropriate. And holy hell that hood is HEAVY!

 

I am, however, willing to discuss ditching the front plate.

 

The last thing I tried was to install the spark plug wire conduits, but I couldn't find a way to feed all the plug wires through it with the 90-degree ends on them. My first thought was to send them through from the plug end, but I could not figure out how to get the wires out of the distributor cap. I pulled with moderate force, but more force surely would have broken something. I can't risk that, so I stopped. I did order new plug wire and ends, so eventually I'll replace these with cloth-covered stuff, but does anyone know how these wires are secured in the distributor cap?

 

070818no8.thumb.jpg.7cf1cac2603764d8069074ededee2e66.jpg

How do I remove the wires from the distributor cap?

 

Oh, and while I had my die grinder out, I chucked in a Scotch-Bright disc and just buzzed it over a part of the aluminum head. Wow, it really cleans up nicely! A few wipes by hand and the swirls were erased. So before I install the conduits permanently, I'll shine up that aluminum. Again, we'll wait for some spare time before tackling that particular project...

 

070818no6.thumb.jpg.1d4dd3664236e8211f9af8f69cf8f05a.jpg

 

My water pump packing is slated to arrive tomorrow (Monday) so I'll have that sealed up by tomorrow night. I'll report back then.

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There's another thread elsewhere with my updates on the cooling system--specifically, the water pump packing. After some frustration with the string-type packing, I found some lead/graphite rings pre-made for Model A Fords that fit the Lincoln's water pump perfectly. With a little help from Melanie, the "Pink Mechanic," I was able to get the packing rings in there and cure the leak. I also added a grease cup to replace the grease fitting on the water pump so as to not blow out the seals and to make it look a bit more authentic. Here's the thread on repacking the water pump:

 

Firing up the car this afternoon, we ran it at a high idle for about 20 minutes. It heated up to the point where it did when I first took it out for gas: about 4/5 of the way up the gauge. But it stopped there and didn't go any farther. The engine started to stutter a little bit, but flipping on the electric fuel pump seemed to cure that (I bought some fuel line insulation but I don't like how it looks and want to avoid it if possible). It puked a bit of coolant, which was to be expected, and the water pump leaked a little but tightening the packing nut cured that, so all seems healthy there. A little more looking around and it appears that the radiator shutters are non-functional and stuck in the half-open position, which surely explains the heat issue. Now that everything else is in shape, I am sure I can remedy that pretty easily. Fortunately, my owner's manual has a nice diagram of the system, which is handy since I can't get in there to see it because of the grille shell. It appears that there's a spring designed to pull them open should the bellows fail. However, my spring is either broken or the bellows have locked up such that the spring can't move the shutters. They were a quite stiff, so I sprayed them down with some lubricant, and we'll see what they look like in the morning. At the moment, I'm simply planning to slip some rubber blocks between the shutters to hold them in the open position. Full air flow through the radiator should keep it nice and cool and I think the cooling problem will be eliminated.

 

Shutters2.thumb.jpg.4dc917f17f93f712ceb24570ab7f15b5.jpg

 

Tomorrow (Wednesday) I should have the headlight buckets back from the paint shop and can reassemble the front of the car. I also figured out how to get the plug wires out of the distributor cap (they were just stuck), so I'm going to install the conduits to tidy up the engine bay. I have new wire and fittings for the plug wires, but I'm going to run out of time before leaving Friday, so we'll leave that for another day. But so far, I'm pleased with the progress I'm making on the car. I'll need to leave Michael plenty of time to detail it on Thursday so we can leave Friday afternoon for the Grand Classic about 60 miles away in Salem, OH. I'm very eager to really drive this car and if I can get it ambulatory tomorrow, I'll drive it home and put some miles on it to sort it a bit.

 

I'll have updates along the way, but I'm very excited to have the car in shape, ready for the tour/show.

 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lots of progress today. Check the water pump packing thread above for details on my frustrations with the cooling system, but it seems to be cooling as well as it can right now. I believe the problem is a modern core in the radiator that has tubes too small for the size of the water pump. The pump is pushing too much water in the top but it can't flow through to the bottom as quickly as it should, so it's bleeding out the cap. Adding restrictors in the hoses before the radiator seems to have alleviated 95% of the issue and I might be able to finish it off with some tweaking. I also cut some 3/4-inch plywood blocks to use as spacers in the radiator shutters. I painted them black so they're invisible through the grille, and with 8 or 10 of them secured in there between the shutters, top and bottom, they seem to be all the way open. There's still not a lot of flow through the radiator, but having these open can only help.

 

I plan to drive it a lot tomorrow and really get a feel for what it can handle and put some stress into the cooling system to see what happens. For now, the temperature gauge hovers around 1/2 to 5/8 instead of 3/4 to 7/8, and the leaks have all but stopped. I think it will run much cooler with air blowing through it at speed--the modern core poses too much resistance for that little 4-blade fan so airflow is negligible. We'll see what happens on the road.

 

Restrictor1.thumb.jpg.ac56ac73d49c5192f32a8ef30799c4d2.jpg
Restrictors held in place with a third hose clamp

 

Tonight, however, I finally fixed one of those things that was bugging me from the beginning: those plug wires just laying on the heads. I found correct tubes on eBay and they cleaned up well enough to look right on the engine, so tonight I installed them. As you might imagine, shoving six rubber plug wires through a metal tube about an inch in diameter is no easy task. I first thought that I could simply feed them through from the plug end, but I quickly learned that even two wires in there would fight each other and not slide easily. I had to find a way to pull them through rather than push.

 

5aa97162512c0_1935LincolnKSedan-38.thumb.jpg.9fdca6e3ea8bb9c21a994ca1f7949c96.thumb.jpg.22b947393a37a84c222ac18708e97688.jpg 5aa971643962d_1935LincolnKSedan-41.thumb.jpg.938c50ca14b63d6cc2dd00240d0929e5.thumb.jpg.5bfbe44b42fbc75ac50d61b744c529ba.jpg

I didn't much like the wires laying on the head

 

Looking around the shop, I found a spool of MIG welding wire and figured that would work just fine. I cut six lengths and fed them through the six plug holes in the tube, pulling all of them out at the end where the distributor is. This way, I figured, I would have all six wires already in place and wouldn't have to force them through when there were four or five wires crowding everything together. I taped them to the tube at the plug end so that they wouldn't pull free when I fed the plug wires through.

 

Wires1.thumb.jpg.fd41d5d585c06502c8aa5c46e6cc1e77.jpg
Six MIG wires for six plug wires. Pulling/pushing the plug wires
through worked pretty well

 

And for the most part, it worked just fine. I removed one plug wire at a time (I don't want to have to figure out 12 cylinders' worth of firing order) and taped the distributor end of the plug wire to the MIG wire with some duct tape. Then I gently pushed and pulled the wires through, then removed the tape and wire and reinstalled the plug wire in the distributor. I found that they naturally routed themselves pretty cleanly without much wire showing outside of the conduit, leaving me plenty on the distributor end to route the wires neatly. The sixth wire on each side was a real pain because the conduit was full, but with some re-routing of the MIG wire, eventually I got them to slide through as well. 

 

Wires2.thumb.jpg.66723368c50028de49c3906ce13f9b31.jpg Wires3.thumb.jpg.58616d9ee91e020458da429867eb01dd.jpg
What an improvement! Very tidy and no more worries about the plug wires melting on the heads and shorting out.

 

I do have some new plug wires to cut and install, but I'm running out of time and decided to let that wait for another day. Now that the conduit is in place, the type of plug wire is a lot less important because most of it is hidden.

 

My headlights will be done tomorrow, so I'll reinstall those, then do some shakedown miles and see what happens...

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The conduits do make it look smart. But they can also mask spark shorts from the wire to the conduit if the insulation on the leads is not so flash. If the short is inside the conduit, it would only be seen by chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

The conduits do make it look smart. But they can also mask spark shorts from the wire to the conduit if the insulation on the leads is not so flash. If the short is inside the conduit, it would only be seen by chance.

 

Very true and I thought of that. While installing them, one of the spark plug ends ended up a little too close to the conduit and there was a nice, fat blue spark about 1/4 inch long jumping from the plug end to the conduit. But more importantly, it created a notable misfire that I could easily hear. I think if they're shorting out inside the conduit, it will be easy to detect. No worries there. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Matt Harwood said:

 

 

Tonight, however, I finally fixed one of those things that was bugging me from the beginning: those plug wires just laying on the heads. I found correct tubes on eBay and they cleaned up well enough to look right on the engine, so tonight I installed them. As you might imagine, shoving six rubber plug wires through a metal tube about an inch in diameter is no easy task. I first thought that I could simply feed them through from the plug end, but I quickly learned that even two wires in there would fight each other and not slide easily. I had to find a way to pull them through rather tha

And for the most part, it worked just fine. I removed one plug wire at a time (I don't want to have to figure out 12 cylinders' worth of firing order) and taped the distributor end of the plug wire to the MIG wire with some duct tape. Then I gently pushed and pulled the wires through, then removed the tape and wire and reinstalled the plug wire in the distributor. I found that they naturally routed themselves pretty cleanly without much wire showing outside of the conduit, leaving me plenty on the distributor end to route the wires neatly. The sixth wire on each side was a real pain because the conduit was full, but with some re-routing of the MIG wire, eventually I got them to slide through as well. 

I do have some new plug wires to cut and install, but I'm running out of time and decided to let that wait for another day. Now that the conduit is in place, the type of plug wire is a lot less important because most of it is hidden.

Good job with the wire tubes. It's a lot more fun on a Cadillac V-12, all 12 wires inside a single tube stuffed down in the valley between the heads.

DSCF9135.JPG

DSCF9151.JPG

DSCF9153.JPG

DSCF9152.JPG

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to toss another hat into the ring, I have been thinking about mounting a fuel pump inside the gas tank like the new cars do. Overall I think a electric pump on a pre war car today is a must. I have driven thousands of miles on a Cadillac vacuum tank, and on LONG hills I have had them drop off and not pull due to vacuum dropping off.........problem is no one car is identical to another, and carburetor's ability to hold back pressure is all over the map depending on make and year, so there no one bet fix or set up. My next car will hav the vacuum pump in place used as a pass through, with a silent electric pump back by the tank with a return. It will NEVER vapor lock. I have had the vacuum pumps fail on tour, and they are a pain in the ass to deal with. I also have had electric pumps fail on tour, and they are much easier to fix on the road or in the lot. I currently use only one kind of pump on all our cars.(This may change soon.) So I always have a spare in the trailer, and at the shop. For forty years I have never had a points failure.....till it happened three times in the last 18 months.........go figure. If I look back over forty years 90 percent of my failure to proceed issues have been fuel related, the rest were charging, points, and flat tires. Almost none of them worth mentioning except fuel supply. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What kind of pump could you put in the tank that would be silent and still let you pull through? Would you run it all the time?

 

I imagine you already know this, but the reason they put pumps in the tank is that the vane and or roller pumps used (usually with fuel injection) don't lift well at all, and when you ask them to, they cavitate. By putting the pump in the tank with it's tail sitting in the sock, they eliminate the problem.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thrashed on the car all day today to get it ready to hit the road tomorrow (Friday). 60 miles to the show and 60 miles back, plus a parade in the middle. That should be a good test and I'm hoping we don't get stranded. If push comes to shove and I chicken out at the last minute, we can always take the '41 Limited--it's bulletproof and won't even hiccup no matter how hot it gets.

 

Anyway, lots of little stuff to get done. The big thing was getting the headlights back from the paint shop late in the day. It was too late to install them since I had a dinner and movie date with my kids, but that will give Michael (my shop manager) a chance to put some clear bra plastic material on the inside faces of the buckets to protect them from the hood. They were pretty beat up and the paint shop said there was A LOT of bondo in them. They hammered them out and smoothed them beautifully--they're much too nice for the rest of the car, but hopefully Michael can polish it all up to match. They're gorgeous. Cost? $300. Not bad.

 

Headlights1.thumb.jpg.d86586dafaf394b439a13d6b40e0925b.jpg

Headlight buckets look AWESOME

 

I continued to fret over the cooling system. It started and idled without problems, but I still haven't done much driving. I added a second rubber gasket to the radiator cap, but at high RPM, some coolant continues to drip out. Far less than before, but it's still a concern. I am seriously considering adding some 1/2-inch pipe nipples to the restrictors I've already installed in the upper hoses. Right now the opening is about 3/4 inch, but by adding pipe nipples, it will go down to 1/2 (obviously). It will also eliminate the threads being exposed to the coolant going past, which might cut down on cavitation, which may or may not be a factor. Two 1/2-inch lines can still move A LOT of water so I may give it a try and see if it stays cool without spilling any coolant out the radiator cap.

 

Here's a photo of the radiator core, which, to my eye, looks modern. It's not dirty or clogged as it might appear, that's just dust on the horizontal surfaces--you can clearly see that the fins are straight and clear all the way through. However, I will note that I took this photo from inside the engine bay while the car was outside--there is ZERO daylight visible through the core. It's DENSE which might be affecting how much air the fan can pull. At speed, it will likely not be an issue as long as coolant is moving through it.

 

RadiatorCore.thumb.jpg.d54c4db016b8a9053ed092d972eff5ae.jpg
That looks like a modern radiator core to me...

 

Other tasks... I noticed that the ground wires from the coils to the distributor were poorly done with fork connectors and plastic boots and light-duty wire, so I made new ones with proper connectors, soldered joints, and 12-gauge cloth wire. Why do people do this wrong every single time? The right stuff is there on the shelf right next to the wrong stuff at the parts store.

 

Wires.thumb.jpg.27bc188523c5c46832744d0e9abfa566.jpg
It's not any harder to do a good job with the right materials
(my new wire is on the bottom)

 

The sediment bowl on the fuel pump was full of gunk, which alarmed me, so I pulled it and cleaned it out. I used the electric fuel pump to refill it and it was just a trickle into the glass bowl with the electric pump, so I feared the worst and assumed that there was a lot of trash in the fuel tank and that the filter ahead of the electric pump was already clogged. Ugh. Run to auto parts store, get large, industrial-strength fuel filter that I can see through and install that ahead of the electric pump (sorry, no photos, I was thrashing to get it done fast). Discover that the filter on the electric pump is fine and not at all clogged. Is a modest trickle what it should deliver? Does 100% of the fuel go through the sediment bowl? Where is the restriction? I don't know, but it wasn't the filter in back. Maybe it's not restricted at all and that's just how the sediment bowl works. Maybe 2.5 PSI only produces a trickle. I don't know but again, a drive will tell me if it's getting enough fuel or not. At least I can watch the sediment bowl and the filter in back to see if there's debris in there. I probably should have used the air gun to back-flush the fuel lines. Maybe tomorrow I'll disconnect it ahead of the pump and try that before we leave.

 

I also had a conversation with a guy who really knows his stuff and he suggested that powering the fuel pump off the ignition is good for neither the ignition nor the fuel pump--that might explain the trickle. There's apparently not a lot of extra power on that circuit after all. His recommendation was to move the power for the fuel pump directly to the battery, but even with the master cut-off switch off, it would be possible to accidentally leave the pump on (you can barely hear it). Instead, I ran a wire directly to the cut-off switch so that when it's off, the fuel pump is off. When it's on, it's pulling +6V directly from the heavy battery cables. That seemed safer, although I did like the fuel pump shutting off with the ignition. I may install a relay to make that happen, just for safety's sake, but I don't have time for that right now.

 

What else? Painted the water pump with some high-temperature satin black paint, topped off the fluids, packed tools for the drive, and picked up some waterproof bullet connectors for the headlights. We had to cut the wires to remove them, so to avoid having to do that again I'll install those weather-proof connectors. They'll be hidden inside the headlight buckets, but if it ever has to come apart again, you can just disconnect them rather than cutting wires. 

 

Tomorrow we'll install the headlights, give the car a good clean-up, and hit the road. I may try to back-flush the fuel line while it's still on the lift and maybe install those pipe fittings to increase the restriction in the cooling system. We'll see how it goes--so much still to do...

 

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a thought, but is the paint too thick on the radiator?  I've read all the discussions about painting radiators, no need to rehash that topic, but too thick a paint job acts as insulation and the core won't cool like it should.

 

Even that layer of dust can act as insulation, when every degree of water temperature counts.

 

That core does look more modern, any Lincoln experts that can verify?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm exhausted but I think the car is healthy. After doing some thinking last night, I decided to put an additional restrictor in the upper hoses to choke it down to 1/2-inch on each side. That'll still move a lot of water, but should keep it in the block and radiator long enough to cool it well. So I added these threaded nipples to the reducer that's already in there. I cut slots in the top so that I can quickly remove them if needed--just pull the top of the radiator hose, go in with a screwdriver, and unscrew them. Simple. I might make the 60-mile drive to the show with the restrictors in and then remove them for the drive home and compare notes. Conditions will be similar enough that it should be a fairly accurate gauge of which is more effective.

 

Restrictor2.thumb.jpg.7b502e129c336e6da9c8e4db81343778.jpg Restrictor3.thumb.jpg.8044f01bea4dfc4ad76761c6ba8f60e8.jpg

 

Cooling system dialed-in, Dr. Francini and I reinstalled the headlights. Michael put some protective tape on the inside surfaces nearest the hood so that they son't get bashed up again. Given that each side of the hood probably weighs 60 pounds (it's just ridiculously heavy) and that there's less than 2 inches of space between the radiator shell and the headlight bucket, it's no surprise that they get beat up. The tape should protect it and I'm just going to have to be extra careful when closing the hood that it goes in straight. It really takes A LOT of muscle to keep it under control. I'm shocked that Lincoln engineers thought a hood this heavy was acceptable, especially when there's no prop rod, no little indents on the cowl to hold it, and no way to lay it over on the other side. It just kind of perches up there on the cowl on a thin 1/8--inch thick strip of rubber and you have to hope you don't bump the car or a breeze doesn't blow it, otherwise that hood is coming down and removing whatever part of you happens to be under the hood at the time. I'm not kidding, it's crazy heavy. Anyway, for the headlights, some of the paint was a little thick so we "adjusted" it a bit to get the trim rings to fit and removed some paint from the mounting socket to get a good ground.Both lights are bright now and I don't really have any worries about nighttime driving. Taillights and brake lights are nice and bright, although I have not yet installed LEDs out back.

 

Headlight1.thumb.jpg.965854abc22ebfc79c5f1ec732db8140.jpg Headlight2.thumb.jpg.8119ccbb4dff7fdada606f7bc8e6572d.jpg
Headlight installation was largely uneventful except scraping some paint to get a good ground

 

1935-Lincoln-K-Sedan-6-762x456.jpg.253586d710930c62da2a6932d3d619ea.jpg Headlight3.thumb.jpg.02d5fafb4a46570f7b3950c04eb2f4c5.jpg
Very pleased with the results. Even you fog light haters have to admit that they are an improvement on this car...

 

Once it was a complete car again, I took it for a long drive. It's 91 degrees here today, so that's about as hot as the car will likely see. I did a variety of conditions, from sitting at red lights to open roads at 50-55 MPH to traffic at 25 MPH. It stayed at about the halfway mark on the gauge for the first half of the trip, but after a particularly long red light, it started to creep up to about 3/4. But it stayed there and didn't get worse. The car didn't act hot so I'm skeptical of the gauge's accuracy and the sensor is mounted at the very top of the radiator where the two inlet hoses are attached, so it's the hottest possible point in the entire system. I suspect the actual temperature of the radiator and engine is somewhat less. I didn't ignore it, but I didn't worry a whole lot, either. The car ran beautifully, pulled smoothly through all the gears, and only stuttered twice after long sits at red lights, but flicking on the electric fuel pump cured it and twenty seconds later, I was able to turn the electric pump off and it was back to normal. I have some insulation for the fuel lines, but I'm hesitant to use it just because I hate how it looks. Ultimately, I probably drove about 10 or 12 miles in a variety of conditions and the car didn't seem to mind. Tonight's drive to the show hotel is mostly 2-lane country road with minimal traffic and few stop lights, so that will be easy on the car, and we're leaving after rush hour so it might be a bit cooler. But either way, I'm confident enough in the car's abilities to make the drive without looking over my shoulder. That doesn't mean nothing will happen, but I think it's as good as I can make it.

 

Last step is detailing, which Michael is doing as I write this and it'll be ready to go in an hour or two.

 

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Matt, I think you ended up with a great car that will be wonderful once you sort out all the kinks.  It's great to hear that the restriction worked for you, too, I've had people tell me that it's a crazy solution.  But, it works, for whatever physics and heat transfer reason there might be......good job...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Broadcasting live from the side of the road!

 

20 minutes out and it starts stuttering then dies. Let it cool off for a while and got another mile or two. Now totally dead. I do not believe it is a temperature problem but trash in the gas tank clogging the line. Electric pump can't get any fuel so it's vapor locking. Can't solve this by the side of the road so we're waiting for a flatbed back to the shop. We'll get the Limited, which always runs, and blast out there late.

 

Disappointing, but I saw this coming. Gotta pull the tank. Dang.

 

Dang.

 

20180713_203342.jpg

  • Sad 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Matt Harwood said:

Broadcasting live from the side of the road!

 

20 minutes out and it starts stuttering then dies. Let it cool off for a while and got another mile or two. Now totally dead. I do not believe it is a temperature problem but trash in the gas tank clogging the line. Electric pump can't get any fuel so it's vapor locking. Can't solve this by the side of the road so we're waiting for a flatbed back to the shop. We'll get the Limited, which always runs, and blast out there late.

 

Disappointing, but I saw this coming. Gotta pull the tank. Dang.

 

Dang.

 

20180713_203342.jpg

 

 A BUICK to the rescue.! :P.  Sorry for the trouble, Matt.

 

  Ben

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And the Big Guy proves once again that Buicks are better cars. We got back to the shop around 10:00 and dropped the Lincoln. Walked over to the Limited, noticed that the battery was still connected from last October (the last time I drove it). Meh, give it a try anyway. Starts first try, idles perfectly, ready to roll. I didn't even bother checking oil because it doesn't leak. Pull it out, load luggage, blast 62 miles to hotel at 60 MPH in smooth silence. Tracks like a freight train. Melanie naps in the back seat. Dark road a non-issue for powerful headlights. Temperature hovering at about 155. Engine wants to run faster. Park car, unload, get ready for bed. Car will start tomorrow morning and will sit in the parade for hours without getting fussy. I'm going to leave the bugs on it at the Grand Classic.


Big Buick is best Buick. My Canadian wife now refers to the Limited as "Gretzky" (AKA "The Great One"). Man, I LOVE this Buick!

 

HolidayInn2.thumb.jpg.f339030e011c24ef5eda97b85d4bd8d5.jpg HolidayInn1.thumb.jpg.952d67f03a2c9272e8edae4cc03c7e3f.jpg

Edited by Matt Harwood (see edit history)
  • Like 3
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great stuff, enjoyed reading this a lot! Having not enjoyed the results of vapor lock a few times, I have had improvements from painting the bottom of the fuel tank silver, to help reject heat from the road, at least that part exposed to the road. I have seen electric fuel pumps made safer (in case of accident) by powering them with a relay that is dependent on something like an oil pressure switch. Re queries on water pump flow, I have used clear vinyl tubing from the hardware store as temporary hoses, so you can see the flow change with revs, and how turbulent it is. 

Keep the story coming please!

jp 26 Rover 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now