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About rnettleship

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    Ray's Rocket 88
  • Birthday 08/01/1964

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  1. Thanks for the feedback. I probably won't tackle the job until the winter and just keep topping off the fluids for now.
  2. I had my trans rebuilt about a year an half ago and it has worked fine but all of a sudden developed a very bad leak which seems to be coming from the trans side of the torus. I've been told that the early Hydramatics had a tendency to develop a crack in the torus where it connects to the input shaft and that was likely the source of the sudden leakage. Does anyone out there have any experience with this kind of problem? The leak is definitely not coming from the flywheel side and the problem is much worse when I drive at highway speeds. It seems to be spraying inside the bell housing when I drive and drips down. This is way more than a drop or two.
  3. I followed all your advice and things are much better now. At idle I am pulling 20" vacuum and when I rev the motor to about 2k rpm I am still pulling nearly the same after it recovers. By using your method to set the timing I ended up going from 2.5 degrees (the recommended) to closer to 8 degrees by my estimation. Hard to tell since there are no markings for degrees. I am not getting any pinging under load and the engine rev's easily. Best part is my vacuum wipers work better now :-) Thanks for all the advice. This has been quite a learning experience and it's always nice when your efforts are rewarded. My next quest is to find an under dash tachometer and vacuum gauge that look appropriate for the age of the car.
  4. the draft tube port does have a baffle. valve covers are original and would be tough to alter and still look good. I'll put the draft tube back on got now
  5. I just converted my road draft tube over to a PCV system on my 1950 Olds 88. 303ci. Now it looks like a traded my oil spots on my floor with light oil spray out the breather. The PCV valve I used was for a Chevy 350 with 1/2" fuel line to the carb base plate. My assumption is it all works fine until I stand on the throttle and loose all the vacuum. My vacuum at idle is 20 inc.hg. Has anyone done this conversion and have advice? My next thought was to get a breather with a port to connect into the air cleaner to create a completely sealed system. My breather is on the pipe from the timing chain cover, not valve covers. I did rings about 3k miles ago. No smoke or oil consumption. Compression is 110# across all 8 which is only 10# off spec. I assume some blow by is normal so I'm mostly just trying to keep the motor clean. I have noticed what looks like front and rear main leaks after I switched from 20-50 to 10-30 oil as well. with 10-30 I was running around 35# of pressure on the road and 50# with 20-50. If the leaks are driven by pressure build up than I'm not sure what my next move will be. Strangely, when I first finished the motor and for the first few thousand miles it did not leak at all. It all started rather suddenly.
  6. I have noticed over the last few months that the rocker/lifter noise has been getting louder and now it sounds like I have at least one lifter that won't pump up. I understand that the top ends of these motors were not the best and some ticking is to be expected even though they have hydraulic lifters. I pulled the valve cover and intake manifold over the weekend and saw 3 completely dry rockers and the related push rods were ground to a point. On the positive side, the cam looks good and it is getting plenty of oil. I noticed that all of the rocker arms have wear on the valve side as well. (recess ground into the rocker where it presses down on the valve) I can replace the pushrods and lifters easy enough but rocker arms seem to be scarce. I really need to keep the costs under control as well so I'm looking for some advice. Does anyone make adjustable pushrods to fit these motors so I have some ability to make up for the wear on the rockers? Are there any shims that can be used on the rockers to accomplish the same? I know the right thing to do would be to replace everything but I just can't shell out $700+. Fusicks only has replacement rockers for 52'-58' which I think will fit my 50' but I would need to replace all 16. Replacement push rods, lifters and gaskets will be around $300. I'm ok with a little ticking and I believe ensuring that all of the rocker oil passages are clear and damaged pushrods are replaced should put me in a good place but I really don't want to do this job again either. Any "tricks of trade" out there I should be considering?
  7. Thank you for that info. Since my car is a bit older than me I have little experience with anything pre electronic ignition. I have the original shop manual for the car and there is no mention of "Dwell". The tune up specs say to set the points gap at .015" and set timing with a strobe on the crankshaft mark. The only adjustment I see on the points is gap. I don't see any ability to move the points themselves. I'm sure the distributor has it's wear but no idea if it is within tolerances. The best I could do was to make sure the breaker plate moved freely and that the weights and springs underneath did not show signs of binding. The vacuum comes off the carb above the valve body so I have 0 vacuum at idle. The engine had a light rebuild last year (Rings/bearing) The motor has <100k miles as far as I can tell. Very little ridge in the bore. Compression is around 115# +/- 5# across all cylinders which is within the factory spec. I'm wondering if my mechanical advance is still not functioning correctly and my new setting is making up for it but at higher rpm the vacuum advance might be taking it too far causing the stumble. I just hate to drop $250 on a distributor based on a guess.
  8. I finished my Rocket 88 restoration last spring and have been driving the car to work several times a week. Since I had no experience with any car this old I had no real idea how it should perform. Since my commute involves driving on 2 major highways I need to keep up with the pace which is about 70mph. (NJ) I have noticed the engine did not like to rev much and assumed it was the nature of the over square, high torque motor but thought I would poke around to see if there was anything out of adjustment. When I checked the timing it was at least 6 degrees before the mark at idle so I moved it back to the correct timing marks. Vacuum port off the carb plate has no vacuum at idle but I removed it before checking the timing anyway. When I took the car for a ride it made the problem exponentially worse. Car would cough and had zero power so I pulled the distributer and found the centrifugal advance gummed up and some small pieces of plastic insulator had broken off and were rolling around inside. I believe it may have been stuck in "centrifugal advanced" mode. I cleaned it all up, made sure everything was free, sucked on the vacuum advance to see it move and hold, re-gapped the points and put it all back together. I reset the timing back to the marks and it drove ok but still seemed flat. I did verify that the timing started to change at around 750 rpm and then changed even more as I slowly rev'd the motor so it would seem that both "advance" mechanisms were working. I also notice that driving at higher speeds (60+) the car has a hesitation even when just maintaining speed, not accelerating. As a test, I reset the timing at idle to several degrees before the timing mark. The car feels like it has 30 more hp and rev's much more freely. Acceleration is excellent, shifts are smooth and I only need about half of the gas pedal travel that I was using. When pushed to the floor, the trans downshifts and the engine revs freely. All is great accept I still have the hesitation at 60+ mph. Below 60mph I would say it is perfect. I feel like it is a timing issue if for no other reason that the car runs much better when I set the timing off the correct marks. What I don't understand is why the engine would develop a hesitation at a certain rpm without trying to accelerate. The same rpm moving up through the gears does not show any sign of hesitation, only in fourth gear around 60mph. The car will still accelerate, but the engine stumbles a little. The faster I go, the more it stumbles. I can even feel the stumble coasting and decelerating although it is much harder to notice. I have cleaned all the jets in the carb (Rochester AA), made sure the accelerator pump is working fine, have no restriction to the carb intake. ( I have run with and without the air cleaner) I really don't want to through parts at it so any advice from the gurus would be greatly appreciated. The questions I am asking myself.. Why would setting the timing at idle several degrees before the correct marks make it run better? Is advancing the timing making up for some other problem? Could I be loosing vacuum at higher rpm and my timing fluctuate causing the stumble? Why would I get great acceleration and free rev'ing of the motor up to 60mph but only then start to feel a "stumble"? Rpm going up through the gears goes higher than what I have at 60mph but engine seems fine. Why would I feel the hesitation just maintaing speed and not trying to accelerate at all? If you made it this far through the dissertation I'm hoping you have a nugget or two of advice for me.
  9. We have a nice warm, dry day in NJ and the interior is tight as a drum. Thanks for the advice.
  10. I recently got my car back from the trim shop. I spent the extra money to use "Original" material purchased from SMS Fabric. The car looks great but I have noticed when it is humid the material sags a bit. I can run a hair dryer over it and it tightens right back up. Are there any tricks of the trade or is this par for the course for old cars? I am planning on putting some scotch guard on the panels that will be prone to getting a little wet. I'm hoping that might help.
  11. Another silly question... I replaced the regulator with a new one. It seems to take about 10 to 15 minutes before I see any charging after a cold start. The manual talks about a warm up period of 15 minutes before you run any tests on the regulator/charging system. When I start the car cold I get no charge at all. Volt meter stays around 6. Raising engine speed does nothing. After the engine is warm and seemingly the under hod temperature reaches a certain level, the battery gets a charge around 7 volts and plenty of amps. Increasing the load by turning on lights or blower fan or high beams does not seem to do anything to get the charging process started. It just seems to be temperature. Is this normal?
  12. My 1950 Olds steering box leaks pretty badly out the main pitman arm shaft. (i.e. a few drips a day) When I bought the car it was bone dry so I put in 75/90 gear lube but it is dripping out. I have not been able to locate a replacement seal and was wondering if there is a different kind of lubricant I could use in the steering box that would be thick enough to stay in but still accomplish the job. Or...where can I find a replacement seal?
  13. Bob, Mine is a 4 door but I should be able to cut them down if the only difference is the 2 door is longer. please send me your phone number to discuss
  14. My drivers door must be off a Chevy as the door panel does not match the others. I am looking for the stainless trim for the interior door panel (Drivers, front) although it looks like either side would work. Anyone have a lead on a parts car? I have beaten Craigslist and Ebay to death looking for this. Trim is "Deluxe" model.
  15. I did some more detailed testing last night and things seem normal to me. Before I started I turned the headlights and blower fan on for about 10 minutes to discharge the battery a little. Test 1 - Engine rpm 1,200+. No load. All electrical components turned off. Initial voltage reading at Bat connection of regulator was in the high 7v area. Flirted with 8v After a few minutes of running it reduced to about 7.5v Test 2 - Engine rpm at 600. No load Voltage reading dropped to about 6.5v to 6.8v Test 3 - Engine rpm 1,200 with load. High beam lights and blower fan on high Voltage reading dropped to 6.5v Test 4 Engine rpm 600 with load Voltage reading dropped to 6v At no time did I see any spiking or radical changes in voltage. Raising the rpm raised the voltage accordingly. Under full load the system could maintain a charge of 6.5v+ but could not really keep up at idle which I believe is normal for a generator. So my question is "Do I have a charging problem?" Also, what could I check to explain why both of my low beam bulbs burnt out at the same time?