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Writer Jon

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  1. So here's a house-by-house snapshot of a short street in the East Bay suburbs of San Francisco, circa 1972. The location is important to note, as there were some foreign anomalies in the mix. 1968 International Travelall (five-kid family) & 1970 Mercury Capri, 1964 Chevrolet Station Wagon & 1965(?) Peugeot 403, 1964 Chevrolet Impala Sedan, (2) 1971 Volvo 1800E (his & hers, only one kid), 1970 Datsun 510 Station Wagon, 1972 Cadillac Sedan De Ville (local bank branch president) & 1968 Toyota Corona Sedan, 1965 Plymouth Barracuda, 1969 International Travelall (another 5-kid family) & 1970 Toyota Corona Wagon, 1972 Ford Torino Station Wagon & 1968 Pontiac Lemans, 1968 Ford Station Wagon & 1967 Pontiac Firebird Convertible, 1969 Lincoln Continental Mark III & 1955 Ford Thunderbird (believe he was the original owner), 1970 Pontiac Lemans Sedan & Wagon (seems like they had new Pontiacs nearly every other year, my Dad thought they might have been related to the family that owned the local Pontiac dealership), 1971 VW Bus & 1970 Mazda RX-2, 1968 Ford Galaxie 500 & 1956 VW Beetle, 1972 Chevrolet Nova & 1968 VW Beetle, and 1965 Volvo 122S & 1968 VW Beetle. The T-Bird was red and it was kept in immaculate condition. I think there was a hoist in the garage for removing/storing the hardtop, though I can't remember ever seeing the car with the convertible top up, it was either hardtop off and convertible top down, or the hardtop was on. The Volvo 1800Es had consecutive license numbers, and I remember I could barely fit seated cross ways in the back seat, even as a skinny short thirteen-year old.
  2. You may want to contact your rebuilder and/or check the factory service literature, as there is likely a trimmer (capacitance) adjustment on the radio to electrically match the antenna to the radio circuitry. This adjustment usually has to be made upon reinstallation of the radio after repair and is usually an external adjustment through an access hole from the outside of the radio housing. If you can't find any information in the factory literature, try the Sams Photofact literature that the radio repair techs used back in the day. An internet search using the radio brand and model number will likely find the correct Sams issue covering that radio. Good luck.
  3. The bumper width measurement really helped narrow it down. I took that measurement and compared it to my '73 Impala Custom to verify that we were looking for a full-sized car, then it dawned on me- rear bumper for the 1971-1973 Chevrolet full-sized wagons. The attached photo from http://www.stationwagonforums.com/ shows the usage. There aren't may good clear photos of the bumper on the internet, but looking at a few different photos from different sources, one can see that the license plate area has the same configuration (four holes for the license plate, flare out of bottom edge up to the license plate area). The additional hole and space above the plate are for the plate light assembly. In addition, the two square bolt holes on each side of the bumper face and upper sides match the positioning on the Chevrolet wagons.
  4. Yes, sure sounds like the way GM used to protect their bumpers during shipping. The bumper width puts it solidly in full-size car territory, so that helps narrow it down ever more. Will have to do some more head-scratching and thinking on this one...
  5. I agree, looks to be GM, pre-1973. Simple design, no lights in bumper, so that helps in identification. Can you give us the width of the bumper? That should help narrow it down.
  6. How about a 1972 Mercury Montego rear bumper- photo courtesy of the internet.
  7. Thanks for the update. I am sorry to hear about Ed and hope the best for his recovery. I had also called Rite-Way in S.F. about the rebuild, so I will send the alternator to them and see how they do.
  8. Thanks, I did give Ed a call last week. But today when I stopped by, there was a sign posted on his door that says "Closed due to illness until further notice." Hopefully nothing serious, I'll try giving him a call in week or two.
  9. Unfortunately, not really available off the shelf. The 300ZX alternator is unique to that Nissan model, and not even for all years of that particular body style. I had to send out the power steering pump for rebuilding as some part stores only offer the rebuilding service, nothing off the shelf. Part of the "fun" of working on a low-production car.
  10. Just found out that the trusted shop I've been using here in Sacramento, CA for over thirty years is out of the component rebuilding/repair business. I have an alternator for a '91 Nissan 300ZX that needs to be gone through and electrically checked, bearings replaced, etc. Would prefer a shop in Northern California so I can drop off/pick up the alternator, but could certainly ship it to a good shop. , Quality work is the highest priority, as the alternator is just buried on this car. It's uncovered now due to radiator and timing belt replacement work. So, definitely not a job that I'd want to do again anytime soon.
  11. Interrupting the circuit for the neutral safety switch would only affect the starter motor circuit. In general, a thief could power up the ignition coil, crank the engine by push starting the car (if it's got a manual transmission or is one of the few automatics that can be push started) and they would be off to the races, so to speak. It all depends upon how much effort a thief would want to expend on stealing the car. If it's an especially valuable or frequently-stolen car model, you might want to do both Plan A & B.
  12. Proper Parts sells these motors on an exchange basis with an upgraded housing. Their website is at: https://properparts.com/general-motors/ I installed a Proper Parts replacement motor a few years ago and it has been working fine in my '86 Oldsmobile.
  13. I'll add a bit to the great advice already posted. It often takes a lot of time and effort to sell cars and parts, so first you may want to consider the amount of time and effort that you want to expend on this project. Auctions can produce the fastest results with the least amount of effort on your part, but it comes at a cost (auctioneer commissions, etc.) So there's the old "time vs. money" balance, too. If you are willing to put in the time and effort, you may want to try selling a few of the cars yourself and see how that goes. That experience may tell you how to sell the rest of the cars. Also, consider breaking the group into smaller lots of cars and sell them as lots. This may help you move some of the less-popular cars that may not sell on their own. Cars of the same make and model could be another grouping, especially if they are the same year or are close and share the same components.
  14. If you can't easily find another engine, you may want to consider having your engine repaired with metal stitching. A search of this forum will show many threads discussing the pros and cons of welding vs. metal stitching.
  15. I also check my secondary wire resistances and note them in my maintenance log. I forgot to mention that there are occasionally bad runs of plug wires (ask me how I know), and these can also give you a unplanned troubleshooting exercise, though independent of what type of primary system (points or electronic) you're using. I've had a new Bosch plug wire resistance triple in nine months, also had a Delco wire go bad within a year. It's easy to check the wire resistances when everything is disconnected for spark plug changes/compression tests at tune-up time. So there's a few more items on the automotive endangered species list, spark plug wires (now replaced by coil-on-plug ignition) and tune-ups.
  16. How old is the gas in the tank? If it's more than a few months old, especially if fuel stabilizer wasn't added, that may be the problem. I've experienced my cars having off-idle hesitation, and no power under load and general sluggishness issues that were cured by draining the old gas and adding fresh.
  17. I've used the Pertronix modules for about thirty years and have had just one problem, one of the wires going to the module started to break internally at the module body and would occasionally cause the engine to miss. I caught that one and replaced the module before it quit entirely. I like not having to check and possibly having to adjust the dwell every 12k miles, sometimes more frequently after installing a new set of points. This is more of an issue on the smaller four-cylinder engines, especially those sensitive to the ignition timing going off the recommended setting. Plus the resultant change in idle speed, which can be an issue if the engine is sensitive to dieseling. Electronic ignitions also are more tolerant of worn distributor cams. I know there are those out there that would just repair the problem by machining new bushings and/or make a new distributor shaft, but for those of us that don't have the skills and/or tools to do so, the electronic ignition is a fix we can do. Another related issue is the decline in replacement condenser quality over the last twenty years or so. I've had that happen twice, one requiring a tow off of a freeway, the other causing backfiring until the engine quit as I coasted into my garage.
  18. You may want to join AACA and take a look at the want ads in the back of each issue, there are usually some very nice 1960s/1970s full-size American cars that are for sale. Everything from AACA National Award winners to everyday drivers. Contacting a local AACA chapter as well the local chapter of the club for the marque that you are interested in can also be very helpful in locating a car. Consider joining the chapter, even for just a year during your search. You may learn that what you thought you wanted, you really don't, after talking with some owners and perhaps some close-up looks. Club memberships are money well spent, especially if it keeps you from buying a car you really don't like. Also, attending club events and asking members that own the particular model of interest about service and parts issues will likely get you more firsthand information than you want to know. Owners usually love to talk about their ownership experience, too. You can also ask about reputable service shops in your area.
  19. Some more possibly "educational" items to consider: - Adjusting the choke or pretty much anything carburetor related. - Checking the battery electrolyte level, or in some cases, just finding the battery, especially those under the floor boards. Also brings to mind topping up fluids (brake or transmission) where accessed through the floor. - Anything to do with a six volt electrical system. Bet they won't have a charger or any other equipment to deal with it. - Doing a tire rotation with all five tires. This is a constant problem with my Impala that goes in for regular rotations for warranty maintenance. I just save time now and show the tech where the spare is, and how it goes into the rotation plan. - Resetting the station presets on a pushbutton radio. And of course, not to leave the parts counter people out of the fun, let's not forget those radiator hoses for an air-cooled VW Beetle, linings for Jake brakes, and checkered paint.
  20. You are on to something here. I have a daily driver 2020 Corolla L (bottom of the line) that I purchased to avoid the expensive duplicate key issue as well as other modern car issues. No key fob or remote locking, just a metal key (chipped) to operate both front door locks, ignition, and the trunk. So it turns out that my very competent local locksmith that has the electronic equipment to activate/program duplicate keys found out on my car that there's a key out there that he can't duplicate and program. Dealer is the only option, at just over $200. Right after I bought the car, I had the locksmith make a duplicate key without the chip, so that I could at least unlock a door if I forgot my keys in the car. Intrigued by your comment, I just tried the same thing with my key w/o chip and holding the Toyota chipped key near the ignition lock. The car started right up with the chipless key. Through experimentation, I found that as long as the chip key is within about six inches of the ignition lock, the chipless key will work. I learn something new everyday. Thanks!
  21. Add me to the count, KD6UTT (General Class) here. I've never heard of an auto-related net, but that doesn't mean someone couldn't start one. It could be like a real-time version of this forum. As others have noted, it's never been easier to get your ticket (ham radio license.) No Morse code requirement for decades now. And courtesy of the pandemic, some amateur radio clubs (including the one that I belong to) are now doing the license classes via Zoom and other teleconferencing services. So you don't even need to travel to class. I got into the hobby in the mid-1970s, when many amateurs were armed service veterans that had been trained in radio during their service. They knew their stuff and their ability to design and make whatever was needed, sometimes entirely out of the "good junk" pile was really amazing.
  22. Take the news with a grain of salt. I have a 1986 performance car (Olds 442) and often explain to folks at shows that yes, the 307 V-8 with 180 hp was the most powerful engine that Olds had that year. Many of you can remember that in that era (early to mid-1980s) automotive writers and others were predicting the end of V-8 engines in cars. Full-size cars had 110 to 150 hp engines and couldn't get out of their own way. At the time, what would people have thought if you had said, in 2020, we would have everyday street-legal V-8 powered cars that have 400 to 800 hp? My point is, don't write the obituary for the internal combustion engine car just yet, to paraphrase a famous quote, "Rumors of its demise are greatly exaggerated." We may yet be surprised in positive ways in another 30 years.
  23. Hi, and welcome to the forum. Get the factory shop manual for your Cadillac. You'll find diagnostic flowcharts and other helpful info to diagnose your starting issue. The manual will also tell you where the various components are located. Try eBay for a manual, used ones there are usually quite affordable.
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