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About heftylefty

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  • Birthday 06/01/1962
  1. To me, an investment is something that produces cash flow. By that standard an old car is an investment only if it's a limo or a promo vehicle you can put out there hauling passengers or showing up at paid events. Or a race car that wins races. In all those cases there are a lot of expenses and the cars do not get unscathed, either. Buying something on the idea that it will go up in value is speculation, not investment. Some speculation is reasonable and offers a reasonable chance of return and some doesn't. Old cars are generally a poor long term speculation in my view if you cost out the
  2. For cars, the long term fact is that the car has to be made (that means modified) to fit the fuel available. The small engine juice is available in barrels but the price will be a killer, it will probably work in a flathead car engine. There's avgas and it's technically illegal but the fact is no one cares. Neither is a viable solution on the road. But then again I remember reading in "Pur Sang" the Bugatti owner's club magazine about a guy that ran a Bugatti on methanol a thousand miles on a tour. This was in the eighties. He had a guy follow him with barrels of the stuff in a truck. If me
  3. With small engines there are two issues, fuel mixture and materials compatibility. I do not have experience with the current consumer small engines so if the carb jets are not removable drilling seems like a bad idea as there is no going smaller. Perhaps replacements are available with removable jets. The plastics I remember seeing on some of the Briggs and Tecumseh fuel systems I saw on the mowers I worked on were clearly not alcoholproof. They were turning to mush or hardening and cracking. These inferior materials are used because, in my estimation, these machines have to retail for a ve
  4. It should be possible to find a "brick" type switchmode power supply with a 4 to 8 or so volt input range and 12 volts out.
  5. The engine and trans look like a usable core. Did these have a GM transmission? Someone could make a rat rod out of a lot of this.
  6. I don't know, but nitrocellulose lacquer is still available in automotive colors although it may not be sold "through automotive distributors". It is used to finish cabinetwork, pianos, and especially guitars. Fender and many Gibson guitars are finished in automotive colors and guitar supply places have it.
  7. I absolutely agree that old car manuals should be scanned and put up as .pdfs or reprinted by book on demand services as many are very useful. Before a certain date, all books are out of copyright but after that, some were renewed and some weren't. research is needed. The antique radio and tube audio communities have been especially good about this. There is no automotive site as there is with Pete Milett's site at pmillett.com that has over a hundred old electronics books or the BAMA Boat Anchor Manual Archive. No car offered 8 volts from the factory, but 8 volt conversions are as old as
  8. I think the earlier pure Saabs will be collectible to the same extent they always were and the GM and Subaru cars will fade out, mostly.
  9. This has developed a life of its own on YouTube. I'm guessing that the film was shot in the early seventies, I wonder if the narrator is still alive and if he is whether he knows about this.
  10. Most Cubans in Cuba are very poor, and those that own cars of any type are among the most well-off. The embargo was not the sole or primary cause of this, as the rest of the world still interacts with Cuba: the cause has therefore to be elsewhere. I do not want to get into any discussion that could be considered political and so won't, but I think it's fair to opine that changes are imminent, and probably not for the worse because it couldn't get much worse. Fidel Castro is 86, his brother Raoul is almost 82 and it is thought he will not continue long in power should his brother predecese him
  11. Plug fouling would be the main concern. This happens when engines are run on the stuff at low loads for extended periods of time particularly on liquid cooled lower compression engines. This is unlikely to cause permanent engine damage unless the plug deposits get red hot and cause glow-plugging but usually the engine runs so bad before that the plugs get changed. If you aren't fouling plugs you need not worry. If you are there is an additive called tricresyl phosphate that helps to prevent it. It must be used very conservatively. Also, if you are running carbureted or open loop fuel injec
  12. This is where the crux of what I have discussed earlier comes into play. At some point in the near future, (and I don't want to get into politics or religion ) the Castro brothers will pass on. They are in their eighties. When that happens, great changes will take place and the island will probably be opened back up to the outside world in general and Americans in particular. I bet that many Cubans will be not just willing but anxious to sell these old cars or trade them for modern vehicles (particularly mini-trucks, the staple of all developing economies) and many will come into the collecto
  13. Didn't know Cummins' first vehicle was a car. I knew they did a few before WWII much like Gardner in England did several high end cars both as transportation and a rolling demonstrator. Again, the reason for this thread was NOT to exhort owners of Packards to go find rare Cummins diesel engines, pull out the factory engine and convert them over. To do that today would be kind of stupid, I think. It was to bemoan the fact that someone took one that was already done, and done very well, with Cummins factory support and custom castings not replicable today, and destroyed it. In England, seve
  14. In part you are reiterating what I said. Airports will not and should not put avgas in a motor vehicle's propulsion fuel tank. That's entirely different from filling a jerry can or a pickup's bed mounted equipment filling tank that is not plumbed into the fuel system and is for fueling equipment, such as....airplanes! I have never been asked for a N number. If I were I would use the one on the Bensen Gyrocopter sitting in pieces in my shed of which I am the FAA registered owner. Since when it was airworthy it was a NORDO aircraft it was never operated out of controlled fields and was operate
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