FRED TIP

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  1. We got a little sidetracked on the fuel pump issue, and while this could change, my present plan is to leave the fuel pump unpainted with fuel and vacuum lines painted engine green. Maybe a little overspray on the fuel pump and bottom of the distributor, but only if it is absolutely necessary (and correct). Looking at many 1953 Skylarks, including high end restorations, most have the fuel pump unpainted, some have it painted. I am unable to see the oil filter in any pictures, and am unsure of the correct color. My original question concerned the color of the oil filter, which at present is painted engine color and I was going to order what I hope to be a correct orange decal and apply it to the filter. However I am back to my original question is, "what color is the AC Oil Filter" Based on earlier comments, is it OK to leave this oil filter engine green and apply the orange decal? Or should I paint it blue as pictured earlier with an orange decal? The engine is hanging on our car lift and now is the time to make the correct decision. Also in checking Bob's Buick's 2019-2020 Catalog, there are 2 different decals available for a 1953 Buick engine: 1950-53 Oil Filter Decal P127 Orange Part OF-35 $3.75, 1953-58 Oil Filter Decal P122 Orange OF-34 $4.50. I am not sure if Bob's will be able to recommend which one. Does anyone know? In the meantime, I will order one of each. But the big question: Is the Oil Filter to be Green to match the engine, or Blue as pictured earlier? Below is a picture of our engine just painted. Oil filter clearly shown - now green. Which is correct - green or blue? Second picture shows the water pump, which is also green. Note that we carefully masked the grooves in the pulleys (good idea Lamar), which we would have overlooked. I doubt if this would have been a judging issue, but slipping belts are not what we want. Thanks, Fred P.S. Was oil filter originally painted, or was a decal used? If originally painted, we have the ability to correctly paint the orange on the (blue ? or green?) oil filter, especially if the decal is not correct.
  2. We are almost finished with the hood alignment, but waiting on some rubber bumpers, as the originals are hard as a rock. We need to do some 'fine tuning' to get the hood/door gap even on both sides. They are close, but need a little more tinkering after the new rubber bumpers come in from Steele. Having the hinge and door springs remanufactured was the best thing we could have done. The hood hinge rivets were very loose and sloppy, and the springs were stretched and bent, resulting in a loss of tension. The hinges were rebuilt and because, there are no new springs available, different new springs were adapted, resulting in smooth working hinges. The hinges were rebuilt by Rowland Hall, 1901 Jackson Street, Burbank, CA 91504, (818)726-9440, rowlandhall@mindspring.com. Fred
  3. Thanks Pontiac 1953. I am looking forward to seeing these pictures. Cars in NJ, and Bob's Buick have a lot of decals and may have these, but we are quite a few weeks (probably months) before we get to that point.. Always a pleasure to get information from this site and all of the help received is greatly appreciated. Fred
  4. Thanks Fr. Buick, I was thinking the same thing and I have some tower-type clamps that I will install on this hose, as well as changing the hose clamps on my '54. Do you know if the oil filter had a decal on the side? Also if the engine was run on a test stand, should the fuel pump and water pump also be engine green? I feel certain that the water pump would be engine green, but I have seen engine pictures of many Skylarks and about 50% of the fuel pumps were natural cast, not painted (and these on expensive restorations). I just checked pictures of my 1954 Buick and the fuel pump was definitely engine green. I seem to recall checking into this at the time, so after my original fuel pump is rebuilt, it will be painted to match the engine. See attached picture of my 1954 Buick engine that clearly shows the fuel pump to be green. Fred
  5. I am restoring a 1953 Buick Skylark and had the engine rebuilt. The rebuilder painted the engine in the correct Buick Green color, but we will be repainting it, as want a better finish. One question that I have: What is the correct color of the Oil Filter Assembly. (Rebuilder didn't know, so he painted it green). See 1st picture with oil filter circled in yellow. Should the housing have a decal? Additional Questions: We have the spark plug tins and have already replaced the short red hose on the Transmission filler tube with a black hose, as well as removing the red paint and then buffing the top cover of the tube, which I feel is correct. We removed the aviation hose clamps from this short hose, but I am not sure if those clamps are the Tower type. On my 1954 Buick restoration we used another type - see 2nd picture. Any ides if this is the correct clamp? (Our 1954 Buick took a 1st place (400 points) at the Buick National Meet at Charlotte a few years ago and there was no mention of incorrect hose clamps on the transmission tube, so this should be correct (??). Last picture shows the Transmission Filler Tube, dip stick, short hose & clamps, which we want to be correct.
  6. On Friday, it took all of 6 hours to do so, as we took our time and carefully made some great progress. We determined that the hood towards the front of the car was off center by about 1/4". (Al was correct in his observation). We dropped a plumb line from the center hood hole where the hood ornament is bolted on (also measured from hood crease to hood crease at that point to be doubly sure that the hole itself was centered. We then carefully measured the space between the inside frame rails and found dead center. We then moved the hood so that everything lined up on center. The gap along the rear edge of the hood at the cowl was then even, although slightly tighter at each side - however the gap was exactly the same on each side. There is no way to correct this without welding metal most of the way across the rear edge of the hood which is not practical. We also raised the center radiator support (hood latch bolts into this) as hood was sitting a little low and front fenders did not line up until we made this adjustment. We have a little tinkering to do, but are 90% of the way. This coming week, we will fine tune everything and drill some 1/8" pilot holes under each of the three rubber angle bumpers into the front fenders and into the inner panel below. Reason: We will be removing the hood and fenders for painting and don't want to have to waste any more time on this, especially with fresh paint. In conclusion, want to say that 1953 and 1954 Buick hoods are very difficult to properly line up, as can be seen if closely looking at any cars of that vintage. Having the springs renewed was a big plus, as they now open smoothly. Before rebuilding the springs, the hood jerked back when being opened and hit the cowl or top of doors - not good. I greatly appreciate all of the helpful ideas regarding this issue and want to thank everyone for their comments and suggestions, as well as encouragement. Fred
  7. Thanks Al, I like your diagram. Centering everything is exactly what we plan to address today, as careful centering seems to be the best plan. The reason the gap from side to side on the hood/cowl is that when we reinstalled the fender supports and radiator bracket, we probably were slightly off center. A fraction of an inch in front would be a substantial gap at the rear of the hood. It might also be possible that the radiator support may need raised slightly, so this will be checked later today. Thanks to everyone for so much encouragement and helpful ideas. Fred
  8. Thanks Bernie - We use a 4 post lift, but for now the car is on wheels and sitting level on the ground. We are taking a good look at everything today and hoping for some progress. We have done body-off and body-on restorations for years and admittedly expect alignment issues, but nothing like this one. This was a body-on restoration, as I am always reluctant to remove a convertible body, even with all of the required cross bracing. Attached are some pictures of the underside of the car after about 300-400 hours to remove the many coats of undercoating. The undercoating did its job, as the car is rust free, other than a few very small areas around the front lower edge of the rear wheel openings. The red tire well is as original on a white Skylark, along with the body inside the rear fenders and also the inside fender brackets in front. and rear. (Also the wheel hubs that show through the wire wheels). Restoring a Buick Skylark is extremely difficult, even though we did a body-off on our '54 Buick 2dr. HT a few years back (400 points at Charlotte). For reference, we also have a nice original '56 Roadmaster Convertible and a '57 Super 2dr. HT. Thanks for the help and encouragement - greatly appreciated. Fred
  9. I thought of this many times, but several "experts" said it didn't matter, so I am not sure. I appreciate this suggestion. This might end up being "Plan B" after we explore all other options. In the meantime, we are progressing with the deck lid - see picture. Thanks, Fred
  10. Thank you Al, What a great analysis and greatly appreciated. We have had some prior experience with a similar hood on our 1954 Buick 2dr HT, but nothing like this. I also admit that frustration has made it a lot rougher. Tomorrow, we are going to start from scratch more or less and will remove the front fenders again. We installed them as a preliminary check to get everything all aligned prior to painting. The fenders will later be removed for painting, so this was what we hoped to be a final fit with a few adjustments required. We have tinkered with this off and on for several weeks and are losing ground.. We removed the deck lid and rear fenders and all of those areas are in near-perfect alignment and fit based on a realignment installation and check. They will be removed for painting. Luckily we didn't paint the hood and front fenders and discover this later. The two doors were not removed, nor adjusted, as they fit well and we didn't want to have to remove all of the hydraulic lines, wiring, etc. All of the windows are now in good working order, so we prefer to leave the doors as they are. We emoved the deck lid, rear fenders and front fenders, radiator support, inner fenders, etc. for paint and undercoating removal . They are all in primer. Engine was removed and has been rebuilt and ready to reinstall at a later date. Tomorrow a good friend of mine who has years of experience with total body-off restorations of 1940 Packard Darrins owned by another of my friends is going to take a look. The other day while looking at the gaps, I noticed one thing of importance: As the hood is in the closed position, the rear hood gap (across the entire rear edge of the hood) on the driver's side is about 5/16" from edge of hood to the cowl. However the same area of the hood on the passenger side is about a 3/32" gap. This means that that the front of the hood (looking towards the windshield) needs to be adjusted slightly to the right, so that the gaps are even. This seems like the best place to start, and we will use all of your suggestions in that regard. The spring assemblies were nicely restored with new rivets and springs and seem like brand new. I will report our results next week and am hoping for some good news. Fred
  11. Thanks for all of the help. I sent the hinges to Rowland Hall in Burbank, CA and he said they were in very bad shape. He rebuilt them, adding new springs and fixing everything else. They are do in Ohio by this Friday and next week we will see if any improvement. In answer to your questions (thanks for being so thorough): 1) No - hood did not operate smoothly at all and the gaps were not what I would have liked, but seemed to have gotten worse. 2) Added 3/32" of metal to rear sides of hood (not 1/8") after we realized the gap was so big when trying to reassemble (we can remove this metal if necessary). 3) Not sure of this. 4) Rocker panels were repaired but not replaced (minor dents and a very small amount of rust). 5) Same two body men disassembled and worked on the reassembly. (All of us are getting frustrated - hoping things change next week when the rebuilt/new springs are installed). 6) Hood was stripped to bare metal - not sandblasted. I will report our findings in about a week after reinstalling the springs. Thanks everyone for so much help. Fred
  12. I wish I could find one, but I sent mine to the radiator shop and they rebuilt it, but over $600 in cost. They charge $125 per hour and about 5 hours in the repair! I have sent other work to the same shop and prices were always reasonable, but this one was all rusted out and I had to pay the price. The owner called me to give me the bad news and I think he will negotiate this cost down slightly, but kind of hard to do at such a high starting price. Fred
  13. I have and am using what I believe are the original hinges, hood and fenders, as car was complete at time of purchase. In the meantime, I just received a message from Fireball V8 (Steve) referring me to a source in California that rebuilds the hinges. I tried to respond to Fireball V8 but was unable to do so - problem with my password or something. I will try again later. I called the nice man in Burbank, CA and made arrangements to send the hinges to him for rebuilding and will be shipping them to him tomorrow. I will advise the status of this after the hinges are rebuilt, but am hoping that this will solve the problem. Thanks to everyone for all of the comments and advice. Fred
  14. I checked the two springs today and one spring had 31 coils and the other had 32 coils. I am not sure if this means anything, but it could. Over the weekend we soaked the pivot points with 3 in 1 oil, but it made no difference. Today we removed one of the springs and attached it to another slot, but it got worse. We are still tinkering with it, but getting a little frustrated. Does anyone know a source to buy a new set of hood springs, or a source to rebuild our existing springs? Thanks, Fred
  15. Thanks for the advice everyone. We marked the hinge location with two 1/8" holes for each, but it changed upon reassembly. I have two old time body men working on this on and off and will pass on your ideas to them next week. I think we should pull the hinges again and see if the rivets are tight. At one time there was a guy that rebuilt these hinges. Does anyone know if he is still around? We have all the other gaps near perfect, but are not happy campers with the gap between the top front of each door and the hood. We added 1/8" of metal to the back side of the hood on each side that helped, but if we move it back even a hair it will hit the edge of the hood when it is opened, no matter how carefully. It is NOT a smooth operation when lifting the hood. Once it gets up over about 6" it smooths out, but by then the damage is done. Fred P.S. See our car museum in Canfield, Ohio at www.tipcars.us (About 50 cars, including some nice Buicks, along with others).