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Everything posted by Charles2

  1. Silly me! I guess I am one of those strange people who think that when a person spends a lot of hard-earned money on a new car, and that car is advertized to be virtually flawless, then the folks who made it should stand behind it. Grinding noises from the brakes are not normal nor should be pulsing of the pedal or any other brake problem. New cars should not rattle or clunk, the electrical system should work, the engine and driveline should function and so on. Auto manufacturers know how to make vehicles that don't have problems. So why don't they? They think they can save money by just having to listen to a bit of bitching from the "chronic whiners". If American manufacturers had made better quality vehicles over the past forty years and had stood behind the vehicles they made, the Japanese would not have taken over our car market the way they have. Fans of American cars are becoming fewer. The diehards claim that folks who buy imports just don't know anything about cars. That may be true, but they do know value and that is where they are going. GM, Ford and Chrysler can make good cars and they appear to be trying a lot harder now than in the past. But the perception among a lot of Americans is that they don't and, further, that they don't fix them right when they go sour. That perception is not based on fancy, it is based on bad experiences. Whose fault is that? I blame it on the American auto industry; they have been complacent too long and have abused the trust of the American car buyer for too long as well. They seem to think the buyer should subsidize their poor design and quality. The "big three" certainly seem to have earned their poor reputation with the average American. I'm afraid they have a long, uphill fight to regain the stature they once enjoyed worldwide.
  2. I would recommend your getting the wheels powder coated. Look in the Yellow Pages for local firms that offer the service. Powder coating is much more durable than any paint currently available and the powder comes in just about any color you need.
  3. I live not too far from Green Valley, Arizona, a major age-restricted retirement area populated mainly by ex-midwesterners. There are two popular bumper stickers here (here not meaning in Green Valley proper). The first says "The speed limit in Green Valley is 40 mph: on the freeways, on city streets and in parking lots." The other says "Helen Keller is alive and driving in Green Valley". Neither of the stickers is too far from the truth.
  4. I agree with the two above posts on low use engines. But, if it were my car, and I were planning to drive it at all, and you are going to the expense of having the rods rebabbited, I would regrind the crank if you had much more than 0.001" taper or out-of-round. You are probably spending $50 to $100 per rod for the rebabbiting; having the crank reground shouldn't cost more than $150 (Tucson AZ prices). Since you can have your rods machined to fit the new crank, why not have a tight engine? Incidentally, how are the main bearings; as long as you have the engine apart?
  5. I would post this question on the Ahooga website; there are a lot of people who are knowledgeable about the Model A who frequent the site. I replaced the U-bolts on my Fordor but had the body off at the time. I guess if it were my car, I would remove the body, especially if it has not been off before. It would give you a chance to do some painting and to replace the body insulator webbing. But, this is a big job and may not be one you want to tackle. So, check with the A specialists at Ahooga.com Good luck!
  6. Peter. I have heard about the proposal but have no idea where it has gone. I suspect the idea underlying the proposal is to be able to identify cars (but not drivers) when using photo radar and red light cameras. When I lived near Fort Collins, Colorado, they started using photo radar to issue speeding tickets to the OWNER of the car. No matter that he/she had loaned the car to a friend or family member, they were responsible for the fine. In one case, a car owner had to pay a fine for speeding violation by the person who had stolen his car. There are a lot of states that don't require front license plates and I hope that Arizona remains one of them.
  7. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> It's not the speed, it's the inattentiveness and overall poor driver skill that causes accidents. </div></div> In fact, regardless of how much "high performance drivers training" a person has, the faster you are going, the less time you have to react to the unexpected. In that respect, speed does indeed cause accidents. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> You may drive the speed limit to your heart's content, so long as you don't impede my ability to pass you safely should I choose to do so. </div></div> A person traveling the legal speed limit on any road is under no obligation to get out of the way of someone who wants to go faster. The faster driver must simply wait for a safe place to pass and, until then, follow the slower car at a safe distance. Tailgating and other forms of juvenile behavior simply exacerbate the situation. Perhaps the person who wishes to exceed the speed limit could consider either leaving a bit earlier or learning patience; both are free and can save considerable stress and gas.
  8. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> Are you implying that there are 8 executives at GM for every line man? </div></div> Not yet! But, after the layoffs, who knows?
  9. MrEarl: You have obviously been there! Great laugh but also a lot of truth.
  10. I'm sorry for your loss of family and apologize if I offended you. I too lost family during the Second World War. I had one uncle killed on Guadalcanal, another in Burma. I lost one cousin in Italy and another on Omaha Beach. I was old enough at the time to feel the loss although too young to really understand what it meant. Still, the war has been over for 50 years and personally, I think it is well past time to put the anger behind us. I'm not saying we should forget but that we should let go of the animosity. A number of my male ancestors were killed by the British, either at the Battle of Culloden (1746) or in the aftermath of the battle along with their families. There are Scots and their American offspring that still hate the British for this just as there are still southerners who hate Yankees for the Civil War and blame them for problems in the South. Wouldn't it be great if these folks could just drop it after all this time and start messing around with old cars instead. At any rate, my point in my original post was that Toyota, Nissan, Hyundai, Volkswagen etc. are making cars in the U.S. and employing American workers to do so. At the same time, Ford, D-C and to a lesser extent, GM are making cars in other countries, employing foreign workers to do so and expanding their offshore facilities while closing American plants and laying-off American workers. Sure, profit goes to the "home" country but profit is typically a small proportion of an auto makers cash flow; payroll (jobs) is a much larger part of the budget than profits. And, the multiplier effect of a companies payroll is far greater than the payroll itself. So, again, who benefits the American worker more, the person who buys a Toyota made in the U.S. or a person who buys a Ford made in Mexico? Sorry, but I vote for the Toyota.
  11. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">They have drilled into the customer that USA cars are garbage, and Jap cars are better than sex. To those foreign cars drivers, I hope the next job lost is yours. Definition of hypocrite: "driving a toyota with an "I love USA" sticker" Sad, isn't it........ </div></div> If you care to notice, while "American" auto manufacturers are busy moving their operations to places like Mexico, companies such as Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Hyundai are building plants in the U.S. I live near a railroad line that connects Hermosillo, Mexico to the Southern Pacific division yard in Tucson. I see train after train of new Ford vehicles headed North to American markets from Mexico. The same sort of thing can be seen at other border crossings as well. For example, the Chrysler PT Cruiser is made in Mexico along with other Daimler-Chrysler products. Arguably, the only thing "American" about some of these companies is the nationality of the executives in charge of out-sourcing their auto assembly. With the current President so high on "free trade", NAFTA and its offspring, don't expect to see any changes in the situation in the next three years either. So, who is the "better" American: someone who buys a Toyota built in the U.S.? or someone who buys a Ford (or Chrysler) built in Mexico? One other thing, the term "Jap" is derogatory and rude at the very least, it is clearly racist and should not be used in polite (or impolite) company.
  12. You may also wish to "fiddle" with the mixture control. You may be running a bit on the lean side. Try opening the control valve 1/2 turn and see whether that helps.
  13. The seals should be graphite impregnated rope. I use a large diameter socket to roll them into place and then trim the end of the seal to protrude about 0.005" above the surface of the block and bearing cap to compress the seal material into its grove. Work carefully and you shouldn't have any trouble getting it in place.
  14. There are several overdrive units available for the Model A Ford which also has a torque tube drive. So, I know that it is possible to install overdrive in a torque tube assembly. I suspect that it is a matter of checking around to locate someone who can do the machine work utilizing an existing overdrive unit. I doubt that you can purchase a ready made kit for a Buick; the demand is just not there.
  15. The steel cylinder sleeves used in the early Mercury (and maybe Ford as well) wore out quickly; almost as fast as the aluminum cylinder walls on the Chevrolet Vega. The Mercury engines were ready for pressing out the sleeves and installing new pistons and rings at fairly low mileage.
  16. Find a Motor's Manual that covers cars of that vintage; they are commonly listed on ebay. There should be a chart giving torques in the Buick section. Failing that, I'm sure that participants on this forum can list the torque ratings you need.
  17. The first thing you should do, if you haven't already, is get a copy of the Restrictive Covenants, C,C&R's or whatever they call them in your neck of the woods. Read the document carefully and objectively; if it says anything about detached structures, read it again. Don't get into the mindset that whatever you want to do should be OK; the board won't see things from your point of view. If the document says no detached structures or has strict specifications for them that preclude the structure you are proposing, then I'm pretty sure you are out of luck. The board and most courts will take the position that since you got a copy of the restrictions when, or before, you closed on the place you should know what is legal and not legal and if you didn't like it then you shouldn't have bought the place. Homeowners associations can be extremely petty and arbitrary. A lot of boards think their job is strictly to enforce (and interpret) the rules, not to help the homeowners. You may wish to consult a lawyer just to clarify your position versus that of the association. Good luck, from my experiences you will need it!
  18. For darn sure, you don't want to trust the engine to a Harbor Freight or similar engine stand. The engine from my 1940 Special weighed nearly 800 pounds with some of the accessories removed. I rebuilt mine laying on its side on a sturdy wooden bench and only had to turn it a couple of times, mostly for access to the main and rod bearings. If you do feel the need to use an engine stand, take Matt's advice and get one intended for a diesel, the Buick straight eight is heavier than some diesels.
  19. As I recall from having worked on a lot of both of them, the Chevrolet had a much better body that did the Ford but the Ford had a much hardier engine. The Ford engine had full oil pressure to the insert connecting rods while the Chevrolet had a pump driven, oil jet to connecting rod scoop, lubrication system for the poured babbit rods. It is not hard to convert the 216 cubic inch 1950 engine to inserts and full pressure; this produces a much more robust engine. Or, you can easily replace the original engine with a 1953 (powerglide only) or 1954 (powerglide or standard transmission) or newer 235 cubic inch engine that has standard full pressure lubrication. The "splash-lubricated" Chevrolet "babbit beater" engine had a reputation for throwing rods at inconvenient times.
  20. Thanks for the replies guys! I had given up on getting replies to my June posting. Actually, I had gotten an email from someone who recommended Green Mountain as a source. I ordered a set for $165 each; It took about six weeks for them to arrive. They are not made exactly the way the originals were but I have done some measuring and they look to be a good fit; they will need some cutting since they are made to fit both two and four door cars. The assembly includes both the inner and outer rocker panels plus a trim-to-fit strip to weld to the floor. I have not yet started installing them on the Buick since I've been doing a lot of metal patching on my Model A. The pair that I got seem to be quite a bit different than the ones you describe Tank; I sure hope they will work out better. When I install them, I will let you know how it all worked out. Thanks again.
  21. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> We're getting to that point in history where we, the chronologically advantaged, have to start telling the younger crowd what life was like before computers, and cel phones... </div></div> Not too long ago, I talked with a group of young adult friends of my son who had never heard of a party line phone or a rotary phone; when I described how the system worked they literally didn't believe me, they thought I was pulling their collective leg. They were also surprised to meet someone who remembers (fondly) a world without TV. I guess they thought anyone <span style="font-weight: bold">that old</span> would have to be dead.
  22. It helps to research the State regulations on titles and registration in advance of taking your car in for inspection. Don't do your research at the local DMV office, the clerks there will most likely be totally ignorant of how autos were registered prior to the VIN system. When I titled and licensed my 1940 Buick, the clerk/"inspector" (about 30 years old) insisted that there should have been a VIN tag just behind the windshield and that the VIN was also stamped in numerous places on the frame and body. The title I had for the car was from Missouri and used the engine number. The car still had the original engine so that part was OK but there is also a body number on the car that didn't agree with the engine number. This discrepancy seized her up for sure. Fortunately, I had a copy of the service and owners manual with me and was able to convince her that the VIN system was relatively new and had not originally been revealed to Moses from a burning bush. I also had called the main DMV office in Phoenix and talked to an individual who was knowledgeable about older cars and got his phone number. I had her call this guy and he was able to straighten her out. My car is now titled and licensed in Arizona using the engine number. You just need to do some homework.
  23. <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body"> Effective today members with 400+ posts are the only people who can see the contents of Misc Chat. I'll selectively add those with less than 400 posts who want to see/post in the Misc Chat forum. Peter -------------------- Peter Gariepy Web Mechanic www.aaca.org </div></div> So basically, the only people who were informed of the new rules were those who were chosen to be allowed to continue participating; the rest of us, the unwashed savages just had to guess. Incidentally, why 400 posts? Is a person with 400 posts somehow more acceptable than one with a mere 399? Why exclude a thoughtful, intellegent individual with only one prior post? Frankly, the new rule seems awfully arbitrary and a bit dictatorial. Would it be too much to ask someone who was involved in making this decision to explain their reasoning in the "General Forum" so us lesser mortals have a chance to read and understand?
  24. I just noticed that the "Miscellaneous Chat" forum is no longer with us. I realize that there was some ongoing discussion about whether to continue this forum but was under the impression that any decision was still a ways off. If the powers-that-be have decided to remove this forum from the website it would have been courteous, at the very least, to notify the forum participants of its impending demise and to mention when the death would occurr. To just "disappear" it without notice strikes me as a bit abrupt and more than a little inconsiderate.
  25. I don't know where you live but in most medium-size and larger cities I know of any general glass shop will have single-strength mirror that can be cut to your pattern (or they can also make a pattern). I used to cut mirrors all the time for cars that had had the mirror glue weaken and let go of the mirror. Just look around and don't go to only auto glass shops, most of them nowadays just install manufactured glass parts, go to a general glass shop. Good luck!
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