JV Puleo

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JV Puleo last won the day on December 18 2019

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About JV Puleo

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 11/01/1951

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  • Location:
    Smithfield, Rhode Island
  • Interests:
    Brass era... teens & 20s


  • Biography
    A lifelong Brass Car enthusiast

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  1. This morning I set the mill up to put it what I think will be the last of the threaded inserts. I decided to do the upper one first. I have nothing planned for this hole which, I think, originally held a support for the iron intake manifold. I do think it will come in handy when I design and make the linkage for the timing and carburetor , something I've thought about but have no plan as yet as to how to do it. I will need a number of things in place first so that job is still a long way down the road. I bored it .504 for a 9/16-18 thread. Threaded it and put the insert in. I then decided not to do the lower hole. I have no use for this hole as it just goes into the crankcase. This is where the oil line for the center main bearing was attached - except that it didn't go to the bearing and just emptied into the case. It's threaded 1/8 NPT so I just used a tap to clean up the threads and I'll put a plug in it. Next, I started converting the bracket I made to support the 3-way oil connection. I cut a piece of 1/8" Masonite and clued it to the top end... I trimmed it to match the aluminum and filled the hole with bondo. Although it probably isn't necessary, I'm trying to make professional looking patterns. With this in mind I bought some #2 (1/8") wax fillet. I should have taken some pictures of this operation because it proved much easier to do than I'd anticipated. You trim the piece of wax fillet to about the right length and adhere to the pattern by burnishing it with a little "ball on a stick" tool which is lightly heated in an alcohol lamp. You can buy the real pattern maker's tool or (as I did) a set of Chinese cake decorating tools - the real tool costs about $40. The cake tools cost about $5 and I can't see what the difference is. While I was doing this my neighbor came over to pick up the solder molds I finished last week. It turns out that years ago his father bought out another foundry and got all the pattern making stuff in the deal. They don't make patterns so if I'd asked, I could have had it free. Well, next time I'll check out their stash of wax fillet before I buy some. As I said, the filleting went very well so I cut another piece of Masonite for the other end of the pattern, glued it on and gooped it up with bondo. I'll sand it all tomorrow and, if things go well, paint the pattern. The Masonite pieces are to give the bracket extra width. These are the two surfaces that will be machined so I need to add material to be able to reduce it to the exactly proper height. You can see the wax fillets in this picture... Out of curiosity, I counted the inserts. There are 49 brass inserts in the crankcase and 22 holes that didn't get one. Of those, 21 are in places where I can use a lock nut. The one odd hole is blind and in a place that would be extremely difficult to bore. (It's one of the three bolts that hold the oil pump.) Fortunately, the design is such that it cannot come loose. The one major drawback to my oil pump is that it has to be assembled on the car and cannot come off in one piece. I don't regard that as a major issue as even if it was possible to take it off intact you'd have to take the engine out or take the flywheel off to reach it.
  2. I took a break from struggling with my lawn mower – which is fighting me every inch of the way. It looks as if I need a battery and since the local Lowe's store is close to the shop I decided to try to actually get something accomplished this weekend. Since the crankcase was all set up in the mill I drilled a hole exactly .450 deep. I've found that when plunge milling, even if I use a center cutting end mill, I get a more accurate hole if the end mill is only cutting the outside edge of hole. I changed the end mill holder and bored the hole to .950. Then went in about 2/3 of the way with a plug tap. And finished it with a bottoming tap. I then tried the insert in the hole. I can't put this one in yet because it projects above the ltop of the case. If, for some reason I need to machine the other side and use the top as a guide surface this would cause a big problem. Ultimately it will be screwed in tight with some pipe dope on the threads and probably with a fiber washer under it. Then, as it was all set up to do it, I faced off the boss where the special bolt that retains the cam bearing sits. I'd done this with a file but, unless you are really good (and I'm not) that rarely give you a truly flat surface. This will be a lot better. When facing, I try to take off the absolute minimum amount of material.
  3. How true...I had it happen with a truck I bought. I was in a hurry and in no position to check it carefully but I asked the right questions and got lies for answers...in retrospect I should have seen it coming. My late mother used to say that she'd rather be honest and occasionally taken advantage of than be dishonest and presume everyone else was. jp
  4. When I left yesterday I thought it was Friday so I was surprised when I looked at my computer at home to realize it was only Thursday...so rather than mow the lawn I came in to work on the crankcase. First I did the third arm...easy enough as I'd already done two of them. I left the challenging one for the end... As you can see, this arm is badly corroded. The hole is corroded as well so while I can get close to the center I've no way of knowing if I have centered it perfectly. I centered it as well as I could and bored it. Then threaded it and ran the insert through without Locktite...the idea being to make absolutely certain it does not bind in the threads. I then took the case off the mill and bolted it to the engine stand. I tightened down the three arms that I'd bushed and screwed the last insert in with Locktite until the bottom of the insert was tight against the angle iron that represents the subframe. I used one of my expanding arbors to make certain I had something to hold. Then it went back in the mill, was centered again and I used a 1" end mill to get a flat surface. The end mill just fit... I don't know why this one is so badly out of focus but this is the insert form the bottom. The cavity will be filled with Devcon aluminum putty which I'll also use to fill the pits on the outer surface. when done it would look exactly as it once did. The Devcon is a grey color that will not match the aluminum casting but I am going to paint the case with aluminum paint - which is what was done originally – so it shouldn't show at all. When all that was done I set the mill up to bore for the insert that will carry oil to the center main. I want to center the new hole on the 3/16 hole that goes through the case. It turns out I have a 3/16 #9 B&S Tool holder (it came with the set) that I'd not only never used, I've no idea what I'd use it for but with a piece of 3/16 brass rod passing between the tool holder and the hole it was perfect for locating the center of the spindle over the center of the hole. The first three crankcase arms line up with the holes in the engine stand perfectly. The last hole was slightly off but I don't know if that was caused by the location of the bushing or if the hole in the stand was off to begin with. Since I drilled the holes in the engine stand from the crankcase before I made the inserts it could be either or a little of both. In any case, since I am going to make a new sub-frame it makes no difference as the holes in that will be drilled taking the measurements from the engine.
  5. McMaster Carr also sells pump packing material. I've used strands of asbestos impregnated rope lubricated with a little Never-Seeze (I have a ten lifetime supply of the stuff)...it worked for a time but renewing the shaft was the only thing that worked well. It is very likely that the surface of the water pump shaft is corroded from electrolysis, in which case repacking it with new material will not solve the problem in anything other than the short term. The only effective solution is a new shaft and, since you have to dismantle the water pump to do that, there is no good reason not to modify it for a more modern seal...you can renew the bushings as well so it runs straight.
  6. I started today by finishing the oil filler hole with a big end mill... This was just to face the insert absolutely flush with the crankcase. I doubt if I took .010 off the surface. Now I won't be reluctant to screw the oil filler in tight for fear of stripping the threads. Then I had to reaggance the table extensions to get the magneto shelf under the spindle. This took some time. It's awkward and I tried a couple of ways of bolting the crankcase down before I thought of one that worked. I lined up the holes and bored the threads out with an end mill. Then I threaded them for the inserts. Because this is so low in relation to the top of the crankcase the tap only went in half way before the wrench hit the case...so I finished the threading with a 1/4 drive 8-point socket on the end of the tap. It didn't fit perfectly but it worked. then I moved the case in and did the second hole. The magneto mounting base with the inserts in place. You can see where the Mitchell company started drilling a hole in the wrong place and then corrected it. Then everything came apart again and I set up the crankcase arsm. These are getting much thicker inserts with 1/2" holes in the center. I threaded the hole and screwed in the first insert. It didn't go in quite as far as I wanted and there was no way to unscrew it or to force it. It was only about 1/8" so I left if. When the Locktite had set I gfaced it off with a big counterbore, again only just touching the surface of the aluminum. So as not to have that happen again or worse, have the insert get stuck half way in while the Locktite hardens I made this little turning tool...it's just a bolt, some washers a nut and a bushing but it allows me to tighten the nut and have the socket head of the bolt to use to screw it in. After which I finished the 2nd arm. I now have to ake it all down again and position the front arms under the spindle.
  7. Over the weekend I finished the worst of my outside jobs...the job I thought would take 5 hours and, in fact, it took 5 days. Having finished that, today I had a case of the slows but still decided to get back to the crankcase. This required putting my extension plates on the table to get the case under the spindle. The first job is fixing the hole I drilled and tapped for the oil filler. Ages ago I made a threaded insert but when I was doing this earlier I thought "what the heck...I'll just tap the aluminum." Well, I made an error and the hole I drilled was very slightly too large so that the threads were very shallow. This has been bothering me for months so I decided to finally put the insert in that I'd originally planned. First I made a little centering fixture to line the hole up exactly with the spindle. That is a 1" end mill holder with a 1" to 1/2" bushing in it and a piece of 1/2" ground stock. When it slides easily between the end mill holder and the fixture in the case I know it's in line. Then it was bored out with an end mill I had ground to the correct diameter. Threaded. And the liner screwed in with some Loctite on the threads. I may face it off tomorrow with a big end mill just to get the top surface perfectly flat. There will be a thin fiber washer here to prevent leaks. I will be amazed if this car doesn't leak oil – all brass cars do but I'm trying to minimize it.
  8. There are a couple of videos of the S76 running at Godwood. I think you can fined them on The Old Motor website. jp
  9. Excellent! I think that was a really good idea and heck, even if it's a complicated setup you had a bunch of them to do and they came out perfect. I'll always put a good job ahead of a fast job. Soon enough you forget how long it took but you'll never forget it if they don't come out right. I have a shaper/planer that is in almost unused condition but even though it's been in the shop for better than a year I still haven't put the motor back on it. I will when I need it and then I'll be kicking myself for not having done it sooner.
  10. Nice job... how did you put the slots in?
  11. I have to devote the next 3 days to catching up on the outside jobs I've offered to do for friends. I don't do outside work as a rule but I know from personal experience how difficult it is to get someone to make unusual or one-of-a-kind parts so I haven't the heart to refuse a friend when they are stuck. But, because I have to set the mill up for another job I thought I'd better drill the last two holes in the bracket and try it. It isn't perfect (but I didn't really expect it to be). It's designed so that the final fitting can be done by machining the casting. That was pretty much inevitable. I think it is just a tiny bit high and the bolts that attach it to the crankcase don't thread in perfectly. I suspect that is due to the irregular holes in the sump since I took the measurement off the threaded holes in the crankcase and the sump is now in between that and the bracket. I will add material to both ends, machine the surface where the 3-way fitting goes and then adjust the height by milling the surface that is bolted to the sump. I always suspected the holes in the sump were slightly off and given the "freehand" methods they appear to have used in drilling and tapping, that is hardly surprising. When I'm done with the solder molds I was making I have to grind an Acme threading tool. I see from my ebay purchase list that the gauge I was waiting for has arrived but it's in the mail box and I don't have the key so I wont see that until Tuesday,. Still, I can now get started. I've also said I'll rebuilt the water pumps on the 1920 Cadillac my friend bought and I'm hoping that doesn't turn into a major undertaking. They aren't leaking badly so I suspect it's just a matter of new shafts - which are probably badly corroded from electrolysis. Aside from a couple of very ham-handed repairs that look to have been done recently (like the electric fuel pump that puts out WAY to much pressure) the car is in astonishingly original condition. Of course the leather seal on the inside of the gas cap is missing which may be why the original pressure system isn't working. I'm always astonished by hack work (even though I shouldn't be). It's the first time I've ever seen an original belly pan for one or the linkage for the tipping head lights. The leather boots are still on the steering, rotted and falling apart but there nevertheless.
  12. The price of chrome plating alone would keep me from ever trying to do a car from the era when it was popular. Despite the headaches of doing earlier cars and the unpopularity of the late teens to early 20s, the lack of chrome is a plus. I prefer earlier cars in any case but not having to deal with chrome is an added attraction.
  13. Perhaps taking a day off was a good idea — my friend did buy the car we went to look at (a 1920 Cadillac) and I have to say I really liked it. It was one of the most "untouched" cars I've seen in a long time. This morning I went back to the bracket/pattern I started on Wednesday. I started by milling some slots. Then a 15/16 hole... I have to turn a radius on the end of this piece so I made an appropriate arbor for the rotary table. And milled the end round centered on the arbor. And pressed the parts together. I'd thought I'd have to glue them but the aluminum flat bar is just enough larger than the milled slots that it pressed together. I then milled two pieces to fit in the slots. These will be reinforcements. And pressed everything together. I still have to drill holes in the bottom. Then I'll mount it on the crankcase to check my measurements. The last step will be to convert this into a pattern so I can have one cast in one piece.
  14. After yesterday's ordeal, today went pretty smoothly. I started by putting the blocks and the intake manifold back on the crankcase. I didn't feel like doing it but I decided the only way I could be sure that the pieces fit was to see it in place. It was good I did because it turns out that the dipstick is located perfectly to just miss both the blocks and the manifold meaning that its length is no longer an issue, allowing me to make it much easier to reach. And from the side... I cut the tubing. And soldered in it's end. It doesn't show very well here but to heat it uniformly I put it in the lathe and ran it at threading speed while holding a propane torch on the seam. I also soldered all the pieces together...and here it is from the bottom And the top. If I can find one that I like, I'll replace the knurled knob with a brass ring which might make it easier to pull up. The last step was to mill a flat on the dipstick. It still has to be regulated and marked but I'll need to have everything in place first so I can pour iol into the sump. With all that done I started on the other bracket. This one will be made as if I was going to use it. After I've verified all the measurements I will add some material and have it cast - then machine the casting. The casting will be stiffer than my assembled version and look much more "period." And I'm off tomorrow, going to Vermont to look at a car with a friend...Its a 3-hour ride each way so I won't be getting to the shop.