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Posts posted by cxgvd

  1. Could be a throwback to the good old days when a few close friends get together before organized events.  This afternoon I answered the phone and it was an invitation to join a tour of relaxed driving involving a few cars for a weekend.  Happy to be invited anywhere, I said yes. 


    Here are photos of the cars coming. a 1909 EMF, 1913 White, 1912 Ford, our Buick and a 1907 Darracq.


    Regards, Gary







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  2. Have not mentioned it lately, corona virus is changing everything.  Today would have been the first day we would have had more than 50 brass era cars running around Chatham, On for five days of touring.  The weather is nearly perfect this week, upper 80's F. and dry, calm breezes.  Our area has been mostly spared from the virus except for big agrabusiness greenhouses, however we are in stage 2, which means no more than 10 people together and restaurants are open to outdoor patio only.  My neighbour gave me a haircut in her backyard, my first since March.


    The Snapper's have postponed our meet until next summer, the AACA Vintage Tour have announced plans for the second week of July in the Lock Haven, Pa and I am thinking Chatham first or second week in August.  Our last event in 2020 has been cancelled, the Old Car Festival in Dearborn, Mi has been a highlight for antique cars for 70 years.  Hope it comes back, we need a vaccine before we can put this behind us.


    Stay positive, Gary

  3. The tropical heat wave has a few more days before a short cooling off and I thought you might enjoy a view of the bottom end of the mighty 4X4", 201 cu. in. 30 HP Buick engine.  A few interesting technical oddities make this unlike most Buick engines, aluminum crankcase is common but the crankshaft enters from the rear, it is called a barrel crankcase.  The front main bearing is 4" long and poured babbit in one piece, a tube, then machined in place, the rear main bearing is installed from the rear too.  The engine is a dry sump and a total loss engine oiling system, in one of the photos of the front main bearing the gear to the right powers the oil pump.  It is a plunger pump which lifts one drop of oil at a time and drips in a sight gauge on the dashboard before returning to the center main bearing and is then splashed throughout the crankcase.  The oil pump is adjustable, the owner decides how many drips per mile the engine receives.  Too much oil in the crankcase results in smoke and carbon build up, though there are four taps. one for each connecting rod, to set the correct level. The valve parts are oiled manually before starting the engine and the timing gears are in a separate gear case at the front of the engine and are lubed with gear oil, not connected with the crankcase.


    So far all the components check out sound.  Gary






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  4. One and two cylinder vehicles are special and I agree the REO and Buick are the best, I do not have one.  The fours are smoother and more comfortable, when I do manage to catch a ride I feel the firing of each cylinder in the neck.  The four cylinder cars have more horsepower so they have larger bodies and wheels.  However, great events like the London to Brighton, Lansing to Dearborn Endurance Run or the New London require a one or two car and the guys who run them are wonderful friends.


    Regards, Gary 

  5. Happy Independence Day tomorrow, we had Canada Day Wednesday, Bev and I had a quiet picnic lunch by the side of Lake Erie and another couple arrived in a Ford rag top.


    When I joined the early car hobby there was a fellow named Harold Sharon with tips and advice which I still follow.  With the current heat wave in Southern Ontario raging I am going to use the time to inspect my crankshaft and connecting rod bearings while the 1913 Buick's engine is resting in an air conditioned garage.  Mr. Sharon preached inspect and repair the car at home and do not wait for it to leave you stranded on tour.  My dad used to implore my brother to not take thing apart, leave them alone, " if it ain't broke, don't fix it ", he was mistaken.  I recommend you purchase a copy of Harold Sharon's fine book " Understanding your Brass Car."  It's a peach.


    I am also taking this lockdown as time to replace my homes soffit, fascia and eavestroughs.  Luckily the house is a single story and I can work off a stepladder, I start in the morning and quit when it gets too hot.  No hurry.


    Stay strong, Gary









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  6. I need to update with the good news my upholsterer is on the mend after open heart surgery and would start on the McLaughlin project next week!  We talked on the phone and he is concerned with Covid and his present health, also he looks upon the McLaughlin as therapy though I will have to do the "heavy lifting".  Good guy and I know everyone wishes him the best.


    I am getting the car ready for a safety inspection before I can license it for the road.


    My hometown of Blenheim. On is hosting an antique car cruise night Friday which involves gathering at a church parking lot and driving in the county to Erie Beach, Erieau, about 20 miles.  This is the first event in our part of the world.


    Regards, stay well, Gary



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  7. I've determined my annoying coolant drips are caused by the brick red rad hoses I am using.  They seem to have a too large diameter to fit the hardware and I must over tighten the clamps.  I am going to change to black hoses my local auto parts store carries and hopefully they will fit tighter before the clamps.  The square tube radiator is not the original rad when the car was new, it was fitted during the 1960's, though it looks great and very antique.  You can see in the third photo I cracked the water inlet tube of the rad and I will have to expand the tube and solder the crack closed.  Onward ever onward.


    Regards, Gary





  8. Ted and his travelling mate, Howard, visited me with the Brill at my house in Chatham, Ontario during the coast to coast tour.  Sorry no pictures.  I think Ted remembered every nut and bolt of any job he performed.  We would go to swap meets together and often he would point to an item and say I should buy it because it fits a car I owned.


    Off topic, My wife and I lived in Alberta from 1971 to 1987 and joined the old car hobby in 1978.   Fun and different times but these are the good old days.  Gary

  9. Earlier in this thread I said the fellow driving the Jasper Park car was Emile Hermery of Red Deer, Alberta.  He was a soft talking, quick witted friend and I found this photo in my collection of Kodachrome slides of him and his Model T truck.  You can see by the blanket behind the truck it was picnic time.  Through the windshield of the 'T' the fellow unloading his Packard Clipper trunk was Ted Carswell, he was the local auto wrecker in Red Deer, another great guy.  Thanks for the memories,  Gary

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  10. Drove our 1913 Buick model 31 and parked in front of our house under a mature crab apple tree.  I wanted to take the picture during the short few days the tree is in bloom, missed it and had to settle for this.  This is my new old look, top and windshield folded down, and notice my hundred year old accessory trunk mounted inside the spare rim and tire.  All is well.  Gary



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  11. I've been working on the front floor trim, linoleum and fitting the four pieces to the body.  Originally the McLaughlin used 5/8th'  solid wood floorboards, but my car had plywood installed.  Good for patterns, I used 7/8th" ash for the floorboards, cut down to 5/8ths" where they sit in the body.  I glued the new Battleship Linoleum to the wood with a mastic cement which was the recommended system, but it did not hold smooth and tight so I stripped it and replaced the joint with Gorilla Glue, the water activated type.  I replaced all the floorboard trim with 1/4" aluminium which I polished, I made the trim plate which surrounds my exhaust cutout and one piece of sheet metal around the petals.  I had the neat piece which surrounds the gear lever and parking brake lever, and the floor thimble, the circle is a repop.  The chestnut Lino matches a piece of original flooring and is also used for the running board mats.


    Regards, Gary







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  12. According to the book 70 Years of Buick, the model 21 used the 255 cubic inch four cylinder engine, 109" wheelbase and Buick built 3,000 of them.  So, it is Buicks second largest car in 1911, at a time when Durant was ousted and management was departing the smaller cars market and interested in going upscale.


    For best information join Brassbuicks.org at BB@BrassBuicks.groups.io.  I think they have about 400 members and are active.


    Welcome to the AACA Forums and best of luck.  Gary

  13. Talked on the telephone yesterday with my friend who he sewing and installing the new upholstery in the McLaughlin after a successful heart operation.  It will be quite a long time before he is recovered but since I am not going anywhere anyway we will work on the car again when he is ready and able to resume.  He must exercise, lose some weight and heal, God speed my friend.


    In the meantime, I have many small jobs and improvements.  Here are some photos of the project 5 years ago when I acquired the McLaughlin from Fenelon Falls, Ontario, last run in 1991.  Seems I should exercise and diet, too.


    Regards, Gary






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  14. Making patterns for diamond tufted upholstery job.  So far I have sewn the main section for both front and rear seat backs in vinyl and next I work on the side panels, then join them together.  Add the stuffing/padding, buttons, fit it to the car then cut them apart and trace the patterns to the final finish, black leather.


    The third photo is a my friends dashboard from his 1916 McLaughlin D 45S.

    Stay well, Gary





  15. Thanks for thinking of me, John.  When I say the top is finished I should say finished for now.  Next step is to sew and install the seat upholstery, then, I can fasten the rear curtain to the beltline.  After the upholstery is completed everything is trimmed and covered with a gimp and hundreds of 7/16th" black head nails.  Hopefully the McLaughlin will be finished in June.  Funny story, my younger sister asked me to park her long camping trailer in my driveway for the winter until the trailer parks open.  The camper is blocking my garage door and the camp grounds remain closed.  What can you do, it's family.


    Regards, Gary

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  16. Is this the last step?  On a piece of vynal I drew a pattern to place the buttons on a back rest.  It also gives me a chance to practice sewing, sort out thread tensions, how to place the material under the needle and stretch the pattern on the car to be sure it looks straight and correct.  I do not keep track of hours, I work on the final project until it is as nice as I can do with the leather.  BTW a picture of a red Cardinal in my Juniper bush.


    Regards, Gary




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  17. Tada.  Finished installing a new top.  I will not post a picture now because it looks very much like the previous ones and I have not driven the tacks home yet.  A fellow, who was helping me with the leather seats, had developed some rather serious health issues which required surgery.   There are just a few places where the seats are top stitched and with the successful top job I am going to take this upholstery task on next.

    On the home front my dishwasher packed it in after 8 years.  I took it out and apart yesterday, no problems are obvious so today I am shopping.

    Keith, yes to the 1916 McLaughlin.  I talked with the owner last weekend and he is bummed, all of his summer events are cancelled.

    I have not mentioned it to Bev yet, I have a germ of an idea for a few days during the summer with my local pals, exercising social distancing, run what you brung.


    Stay well, Gary

  18. Hello Keith; No worries.  Your McLaughlin top is the one man style and relies on steel to keep everything in place and is more open, maybe prettier.  Mine is the two man top which has top sockets in the front seat area to hold the roof up.


    Stan, at Classic Coachworks in Blenheim, is sewing a new top for a 1923 Gray Dort this month.  It is the same style as your McLaughlin, give him a call, maybe stop in and see the job and have a talk.  I love the look of a well fitting top,  they seem to get old so quickly in the sun.  I have a friend who has a 1916 McLaughlin D45 nearby we could visit if you like.


    Leave the top down, very sporty open air motoring.


    Regards, Gary





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  19. I'm stoked.  This afternoon my wife and I attached the side panels to the main top and top stitched both sides.  There that's done.  The center section of the top is a straight edge and the side panels are curves and it is the reason the whole job lays nicely without wrinkles.  Trimacar is helping us with advice every step of the way.  Thanks,  Gary




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  20. Coming along well.  I've installed the rear curtain and windshield baffle and have the three parts of the main deck roughed in.  I've marked where to trim before joining the parts.  The top material is 100" long, Bev is going to help me support the top as eight feet of Stayfast goes through the sewing machine twice.


    Regards, Gary





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  21. My sewing machine has been working poorly and it was not entirely the fault of the operator.  The machine would sew well for a couple of feet , then the thread would begin to fray at the needle.  Turns out the needle plate where the needle carrying the thread would pass through the plate to the bobbin was rough and I managed to replaced it today.  Hopefully problem solved.   I finished sewing the rear curtain and tacked it up, I think I will get 2 additional yards of Stayfast topping material and try again.  Practice, man, practice.


    In the photos today are the rear curtain with the McLaughlin diamond shapes, my notes in the works binder and the next task, a windshield baffle.


    Regards, Gary





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  22. Thanks John, good catch.  The size and six diamond pattern I copied from a 1912 McLaughlin located in a Museum.  The original photograph, from Calgary, Alberta BTW, shows five diamonds, so I will make the correction.  Thanks again.  The collector, which just rescued a 1913, sent me a close up of his rear curtain and the size is smaller ( 9X20") with five diamonds.


    There is another photo on these forums of a 1917 McLaughlin with five diamonds in two rows with an oval shaped window.  My car is a 1915 and I haven't any proof which window shape is correct.  I've pointed out before when dealing with 100 year old cars it's a judgement call.  McLaughlin made less than a 1,000 cars in 1915 in all series.


    Today, I begin to install the top and it starts with the rear curtain, just in time, my friend.  Gary



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  23. Progress, and yet another example of " over restored."   The main part of the top is 4' 2'' wide, side to side, I had to cut a strip off the length of the top material.  That left me with a piece which was perfect for another strap running front to back.  I see that style on big, expensive cars, I got the thread of an idea to incorporate the extra support on the McLaughlin.  Then I stretched the top deck over the bows to mark with chaulk the outline where the sides are going to join the deck.  Pretty straight forward, the tricky part will be fabricating the diamonds of the rear window.


    Regards, Gary






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