Machine Gun

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Posts posted by Machine Gun

  1. John and Old Tank:


    Thank you for the suggestions. First, there was a bolt sort of hidden between the oil pump and the oil pan that's not easy to see unless you get under the car or look at it head-on. Yep, all the bolts are out. I have a nice, clear view of the cover because I removed the radiator. I hadn't heard of using transmission fluid to free up stuck bolts, but it's worth a try. I'm not sure that the stuff will migrate along the bolt since the bolt is horizontal and there's about four inches of travel required but hey, I'm willing to give it a go. As for drilling along the bolt, that's my option of last resort just before I exercise the nuclear option with the torch.


    Given that it'll take some time to treat the bolt and my limited time to work on the car it'll be a couple of weeks before I have results. I will be sure to let you guys know how I make out.



    • Like 1

  2. Hi All:


    I had a leak in the water jacket gasket between the timing cover and the block, so I'm going to replace the gaskets and install a new water pump while I'm at it. This is probably not a new issue to many of you, but I'm dealing with snapped-off bolt heads. I'm not too concerned about the short ones on the water pump as I will deal with them after I get the timing cover off, but there's one four-inch bolt on the passenger side that goes through the cover and into the block. That one snapped off right at the head, and it seems to be welded (figuratively) to the timing cover. Consequently, I can't get the timing cover off. It won't budge a hair, even with a puller between the block and the timing case. I could exert more pressure on the puller, but I don't want to destroy anything. Note that all of the bolts that hold the timing cover to the block as well as the ones on the oil pan came out except for this one. I have two questions:


    1. Apart from applying heat to the case, is there anything else I should try to break this loose? I don't think that PB blaster is going to make its way far enough along the bolt to be much help, so absent other suggestions I will heat up the works with a torch.
    2. Given the possibility that the timing cover will be damaged during the process, can anyone recommend a source for a replacement timing cover? I know of several sources out there like TA Performance, but I'd appreciate hearing from someone who has personal experience with one of the aftermarket covers. Quality trumps price.


    Thanx in advance for your help. We've had some very nice days here recently and It's killing me to have the Buick off the road.





  3. Took the Skylark to an event in Egg Harbor Township NJ known as Fleming's Pumpkin Run. Acres and acres of cars (antiques, classics, stock cars, you name it), farm equipment, tractors (as in tractor-trailers) and various other things. Buick was represented by a few examples that included a '64 Skylark convertible, a '64 LeSabre, an early '80s Regal, and a '57 Caballero. There were others here and there but I didn't have time to walk the whole thing, and it was one of those venues in the woods that's not arranged in an easily recognizable pattern where you can easily determine where you've been. The place used to be a junkyard, and several rotting carcasses remain among the trees. It's an annual event that I will most likely return to.


    The car gave a flawless performance on the six hour round trip, if you don't count the broken cigarette lighter socket that I will attend to this afternoon.



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  4. Took the Skylark out with my wife on Saturday night for an ice cream run to a nearby creamery in Bellvale, NY. The place has decent ice cream and killer views. I was more interested in driving the car than eating, but the ice cream provided a good excuse for an hour long round trip. It was also my first time out at night with the car and I learned that a couple of instrument panel lights need replaced.

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  5. Drive-ins were fun back in the day. I think there's only one left here in NJ, but it's more then two hours away from here. There's one close by in Warwick, NY, only about 15 minutes away. I've been up here for 30 years and I've never been to the place, although my kids and many of my friends go there. Maybe it's time for me to take the Skylark, my wife and a can of Off.

  6. Attended a Summer Bash car show in the Poconos yesterday, my Skylark's first "showing." Mostly 'Vettes and muscle cars, many of them modified. Lots of nice work was evident. My car attracted much more attention than I would ever have thought. One of the spectators told me that they don't see many bone stock, plain Jane, four door family sedans at shows (I guess they won't, at car shows sponsored by the local 'Vette club). The weather was perfect for a three hour round trip.

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  7. I picked up a nice '64 Skylark a couple of months ago and drove it 100+ home with no trouble. However, there were two issues that I wanted to fix as soon as I could after I got home: severe hesitation when starting off from a stop, and the engine was running extremely rich. The prior owner indicated that he had installed a rebuilt carburetor earlier this year, but that it he thought it needed some adjustment. Here's what I found when I got around to pulling the air cleaner:

    1. The carburetor was rebuilt by Autoline, a Canadian company that sells rebuilt carburetors through Advance Auto Parts. I checked the Advance Auto website and sure enough, they list a rebuilt carburetor for a '64 Skylark with the 300 CID engine, and the one installed on my car had the correct part number.
    2. The accelerator pump rod was missing, and that would certainly account for the hesitation. I determined that the reason it was removed was because the accelerator pump lever was jammed. OK, now I'm into more than adjustments.
    3. I disassembled the carburetor and found that the pump plunger had separated from its rod, and the whole works was jammed up. The plunger was a cheap plastic thing like I had never seen before (it's been over 20 years since I rebuilt a carburetor). I decided that I should rebuild the carb myself. I ordered a kit from carbking.
    4. During the rebuild process I found that the main jets had apparently not been replaced. The ones in there had different number stampings than the new ones I got in my kit, and the old ones looked like they had been installed with a chisel instead of a hollow ground screwdriver.
    5. The power piston valve was installed without a gasket.
    6. The float level was way high and the float drop was way low.
    7. The small check ball at the bottom of the pump plunger cavity was made of steel instead of aluminum like the one that came in my kit. I'm not sure why the material is important, except perhaps that a lighter ball is required for proper operation of the system.

    The car runs fine now. Imagine that!

    Apart from a missing gasket, incorrect jets, broken pump plunger assembly, and improper float adjustments, the rebuilt carb was a real bargain. My point is to caution anyone who needs a rebuilt carburetor to know who your rebuilder is, and make sure they know what they're doing. Better yet, do it yourself if you can.


  8. Nice original car! You are fortunate to have found a Manta, and in such nice condition. GTs seem to be all around, but not the Manta body style. I bought a '73 Rallye new and loved that car. Earlier in the year I tried to find another one, but to no avail. I gave up and bought a '64 Skylark instead.


  9. Thanx for your reply, Yeller. I hope to have some time this coming weekend to look into the problem. I also have a carburetor issue to resolve that takes priority over the shift lever issue. If the problem looks like it might be in the column as you suggest, then I'll have to find my steering wheel puller (haven't seen it in years). I hope to be able to see what's going from either end of the column and not have to pull and disassemble the thing. I'll let you know what I find out. Might be a while.


  10. My '64 Skylark is equipped with automatic transmission. It operates fine in all respects except for the column shift lever. It's very difficult to pull the shift lever in to get it to shift into Park. It doesn't bind or make any unusual noises, it's just that it's very stiff pulling in the lever and feels like it needs a good cleaning and/or lubrication. It moves through all of the gears smoothly once I pull in the lever. it's not obvious to me where the problem might lie, inside the column perhaps? I'd appreciate hearing from anyone who can shed any light on this problem.



  11. I just introduced myself in the appropriate forum, and now I introduce my '64 Skylark. I bought it last week and drove it home yesterday. It's my first Buick in over 30 years. It's been a garage queen for most of its life and it has absolutely no undercarriage or body rust that I have been able to find. It has only 48K original miles, and judging from the condition of the original upholstery and the absence of discernible wear on the foot pedals, I believe it. It's just a plain-Jane 4 door sedan with the 300 c.i. V8 with PS and PB. It drives wonderfully.

    The first thing I plan to do is seal a small leak somewhere around the rear window that is typical of many cars: I got a small amount of water in the trunk yesterday after the drive home in the rain, and I need to get that fixed before it starts to rust the trunk and around the roof belt line (that's what destroyed my mother's '66 Malibu, front and rear). So far there's absolutely no surface rust in the trunk and no evidence of bubbling around the belt molding, and I want to keep it that way). I will study the body manual to see how to remove the belt molding without destroying it. Another priority is to find an old FM radio converter to hook up to the factory AM radio. There seems to be an abundance of modern FM radios that will fit into the dash, but none pass my test for appearance or features (don't need stereo, iPod interface or 200 Watts of power).

    Right now the car is sitting happily in my garage, where it will hopefully spend many more years protected and pampered.

  12. Well, here I am with my first Buick in over 30 years. My name is Jim and I live in Sussex County, NJ. I just picked up a 1964 Skylark and drove it home yesterday (more on that in the Me and My Buick forum). I've been a motor head all my life, but I haven't had an oldie in the stable for at least five years. With the exception of a 1962 Studebaker GT Hawk, all of my cars of the past (and there have been about 30 of them) were rust buckets, but I had them all running and driving perfectly. I'm looking forward to participating in what appear to be a group of very well-run forums.

    P.S. There's nothing sinister about this Italian from NJ called Machine Gun. My nickname goes way back, and I got it because I'm a fast "rapid fire" talker.

  13. Thanx Rusty, I appreciate your response. I realized after looking at how the pedals are mounted that I'd have to take them off first, and that's the problem. I'm not sure how best to get them off the master cylinder. There doesn't seem to be enough clearance on either side of the MC to slide the pedals off the pin, and the clutch pedal has a killer spring attached to the mechanism that looks like a bear to remove. Anyway, I'll dig into it over the weekend. BTW, thanx for the tip on the removable floor panel. I'm sure that'll help some.


  14. Sorry for asking such a basic question, but where can I find the procedure for removing the master cylinder on a '54 Dodge Coronet? I have the service manual, which is of no help. This is my first Mopar and I'm not accustomed to seeing the brake and clutch pedal pivot shaft going through the master cylinder. It's not obvious how to remove the pedals and shaft from under the car (while lying on my back in the driveway). Can anyone offer any tips? Thanx.