Avanti R2, 1963, refresh

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It is Saturday, July 16th.  Headed to a cars and coffee event this morning with Camaro Steve and Corvette Wayne.  Some nice and original cars for a change.  We have had company for a week so I did not do any work on the old cars.  Next week I have to get the 1923 McLaughlin Buick ready for the big Buick show in Allentown, PA.  This will be a Wednesday to Saturday event.  Thankfully, no judging so I do not have to clean as much as I usually do. 


Pics of the C&C of this morning.



























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Sunday, July 17th, PM.  Camaro Steve called this afternoon.  He worked a few hours on Barney, the F100.  He did a lot of cleaning and spot painting.  Danial worked along side him, and they were able to make the final steering connections, worked on the wiring, and installed the new Holly carb.  Here are the pics he sent me.






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It is Wednesday, July 20th.  I am getting the 1923 McLaughlin Buick ready for the Buick show in Allentown, PA next week.  Have the tires looking good, both sides and now will clean the exterior today.  


Greg has a Stoddard Dayton progress report for us.  Not his, but a friend's.  Thought I would pass it on as some nice pics.


"Stoddard- Daytons Rule!

          Friend John Nance in San Diego showing  progress.....

                           Makes me want to give mine a hug.


From: sprintcars
Sent: Tuesday, July 19, 2016 8:07 PM
To: Greg Cone; Temple Baldwin
Subject: Stoddard Dayton 10K-42 Update
Greg and Temple,

Spent the whole day cleaning off plating flash to be able to have the pins, bearings, rocker supports and rockers to fit each other. Photos are of a trial fit and assembly after replating. I know that a lot of people like Pope Hartford engines like my brother but there is something about a Stoddard engine that is special that the Pope does not have. Greg, you are probably wondering about the exhaust manifold of my engine being that it looks a 1911 and later engine. I thought the same when my father and I went and got the car back in 1967. Dad said "John don't worry and he said Stoddard Dayton West did some research on this car and it was the test bed for the 1911 type engine that was coming out for 1911. Temple said he will give me a letter of authenticity to this effect. This will make 10K-42 a very rare car.





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It is Friday, July 22nd.  Finished at last, the 1923 McLaughlin Buick is all cleaned up and ready for her trip to Allentown, PA for the big Buick show next week.


And Camaro Steve wrote me that Barney, the F100 Ford Pickup, is slowly being put back together.  Here is what has been done over the past couple of days.  The engine is almost complete and heating hoses have been made and attached, only new power steering hoses need to be purchased and installed.  The battery has been relocated from the firewall back into its original place in the cab floor.  All the gauges have been rewired and installed, but some wiring cleanup needs to be done and final connections to the fuse box made.  The instrument cluster now has turn signal indicators.  The weekend the front fenders will be fitted and installed.  Then she will look whole again.  Here are the pics that Steve sent me.  







Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)

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Still Friday.  Daniel, the fabricator/mechanic working on Barney, the F100 pickup sent us a progress report.  He had to make something up to connect the tranny to the new GM shift column.


"Got the shifter figured out. Found 5/16 swivel rod end's , had to make ends , for trans and steering column ,made out of stainless , see pic , had the stainless tubing around too.In the pic the shifter is in drive , with the shifter in low , the brake pedal almost hit's , when it's pushed down, goes by the shifter tubing . Works great , very factory like feel . I did spray the weld with clear , it would have rusted. Pic was taken from under truck , shows the brake arm issue.

Thanks Daniel"



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Saturday, July 23rd.  The 23 McLaughlin Buick is ready to load into the trailer for its trip to Allentown, PA next Wednesday.  Looking forward to the show and seeing everyone.  


This morning I took the Avanti to cars and coffee.  Not many cars there this morning.  Just too hot and humid I guess.  About a dozen cars were there.  Of note was a 1946 Packard with 4,000 miles on the clock.  All original, except for tires and a battery.  Paint look pretty good also.  Owner said that it was a Florida car.  A nice 1960 Corvette was there also.  And a 1967 Camaro drag car arrived too.  Shook the ground, what an awesome sound.  Must be a bear to drive around town.


I am still having major problems with the Avanti.  I had to run most of the way to the event in second gear.  Everything is OK until I hit about 50 mph.  Then the tranny downshifts into second and will not go back into third until I slow down to 30 mph.  Also it is puking engine oil all over from a leak somewhere on the front of the engine.  So I took the back roads home and did not exceed 45.  Everything was perfect, go figure.  I have it back on the lift and am going to start pulling parts over the next few days to see if I can locate the leak.  Enough is enough.  Going to ask the Stude folks about the transmission issue.  
















Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)

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Still Saturday, 100 degrees, so hot it feels like you could catch fire in the sun.  Monday it is suppose to be about 111 degrees.  


Greg just stopped by and picked up the transmission jack.  He said that he has to pull the transmission out of the maroon Avanti.  Blew up a clutch.  Only been a year or so since it has been on the road.  A little early for it to be needing a new clutch, etc.  He said that he would give us a report.



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Monday, July 25th, AM.  Going to be the hottest day of the year, over 100 degrees and with the humidity it is suppose to feel like 115 degrees.  You cannot be in the sun for long.  So this morning, while it was still under 90 degrees, I put down the top of the 1923 MB (with Aice's  help as it takes two people), and drove her on to the trailer.  All strapped down now and ready for Wednesday's trip to PA.  It will only take us about four hours of drive time to get there so will leave home about 9:30 AM.  We have  to go and pick up our registration and then park the trailer.  I hope to be at the hotel about 5ish so we can relax and have a nice dinner.


On Thursday we plan to go to the Simeone museum http://www.simeonemuseum.org/ and then will probably head back to the show event to have a look around.  On Friday we will spend the day at the event going thru the vendor area, look at some of the cars, and visit the on-site Bulgari Museum.  May bring the 23 over and put it in its place for the show.  Going to be over 700 cars trying to get in on Saturday morning so just may want to avoid the hassle and place it on Friday.  We have special dinners on Friday and Saturday night with all the car folks, should be fun.


And then on Sunday we pick up the car and trailer, and head for home.  Short trip, but should be really fun.


Pics of the 23 ready to go.







Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)

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Looks like it may cool down a bit by the weekend.  But one argument for parking the car on Saturday rather than Friday is the threat of thunder storms on Friday.  But maybe you have a tarp to cover the car up?  Have a safe trip.



allentown weather.JPG

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Chris, How is that Avanti of yours? Any updates?


Joe, I have a nice waterproof cover for it.  The 23 should be fine.  In a way I hope we will get some rain.  It was 115 degrees with the humidity corrected temperature, The outside temp was 106.  Hot.


Talked to Camaro Steve re Barney, the F100 truck.  On Sunday, they fitted the the front fenders and inner liners.  They had to do some cutting of the inner liners to make them fit around the new suspension components.  Daniel is making up the power steering hoses and will rewire the lights and ignition.  Steve and Daniel think that it will be a driving truck again in about a week and a half.  Here is hoping.  Daniel also has to make the patch where the floor shifter was, and a new battery cover.  They also cut three inches out of the driveshaft.  Dan will weld it back on the new front shaft that goes into the new transmission.  

Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)

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Tuesday morning, July 26th.  Another hot one expected today.  Have tool and such to load this morning for the trip to Allentown.  Other than a few odds and ends we are ready to go.


But Greg and his maroon Avanti are going no where.  But he has found the problem with the clutch.  Here is his report.


From: Greg <gregcone@msn.com>
Sent: Tuesday, July 26, 2016 12:06 AM

Subject: Saturday night update.

Hadn't planned on this.    Although I know that the four speed Avantis have a weak clutch linkage,   and they are prone to fail only when in traffic,   they sometimes do.


That means either a call for a tow,  or some creative driving technique for a car that you can't stop without pulling it out of gear.   If you do,  that means putting the car in first gear and waiting for your opportunity to go by turning on the ignition key and getting on with it.   You also plan your route to avoid stopping again (right turn on red traffic lights,  orbiting parking areas until the road is clear ,  etc.  Once you are on a highway,  shifting between gears  is a matter of vehicle speed vs.  engine speed.  The maroon car did it to me a couple years ago,  and that led me to beef up the linkage.    Did it again last week.      


Getting it upon the lift ramps was a snap.   Mounted a Harbor Freight winch  and towed it on.     When we troubleshot the clutch linkage,  found nothing wrong.   That led to a trip to the Feser Tool Rental Depot to borrow his transmission jack.   


Now that the trans is down and out:  Good news and bad news.

           The good news is that with the transmission out,  I can see a problem.

              The bad news (actually not that bad now that the trans is out) is that one of the pressure plate actuating fingers is  out of place.     


We now know to pull the clutch and fix the problem.


Monday night:    This morning I ordered a new pressure plate, disc and throwout bearing.     All these items had been renewed when I put the car back into service.  I'd have to scan Unimog's  blog to date when,  but I'd guess ten years ago (plus or minus) and maybe ten thousand miles.   With the trans out,  now's the time.


Tonight I snagged a bottle jack at Harbor Freight to use to support the rear of the engine when the the bell housing and such are removed to free the clutch.



       Don't you remember  the Saturdays when you'd bring the old '57 over to my house,  we'd pull it up with two wheels on the sidewalk....slide underneath to drop your transmission.   Install a NAPA second gear assembly ,  paint the trans cherry red and put it back.    Then you'd knock it out the next day at Mason-Dixon drag strip, but only on the trophy run.   You'd limp around all week until you got paid and we'd do it all again.           All the while eating cheeseburgers with greasy fingerprints on the buns.      Didn't need no stinkin' lift either.






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John - my Avanti is holding pretty steady the last couple of times I took it out. I was having a bit of a problem in June where it was stalling out on me at low idle - wouldn't hold an even idle whilst sitting at a light, etc. I would have to keep my foot on the brake and accelerator a little to keep the RPM's up. I started mulling over in my mind how much it was going to cost to take it to the Avanti mechanics who did a stellar job on it when it was brought back to life four years (!) ago. But happy news - the problem seems to have corrected itself (I love problems like that). The old girl is back running like the champ she is!


I drove it 75 miles last time I took a drive a couple of weeks ago. It's been just too darn hot most of this month though. Makes for a miserable drive. The pic below is right after I took her by the house and washed all the storage dust off - she draws a lot of looks and thumbs up.


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Chris, glad to see you and the Avanti are still motoring down the road.  Keep us updated from time to time.


It is Wednesday, PM, July 27th.  At the hotel.  We made it to Allentown, PA.  Got a later start due to the fact that we were twenty miles down the road when Alice asked if I had the cel phone.  Nope.  So we had to head back home to get it.  That mistake cost us about an hour.  But we made it to the registration point at about 3 PM.  Lots of people coming and going.  It was so loud with all the people talking that we had trouble understanding what was being said.  But we got our credentials and headed off to the parking lot to drop off the trailer and head to the hotel.  


Lots of Buicks coming and going onto the show field.  Here are a couple of pics.  Tomorrow we are heading into the race car museum in Philly.  It will take about a couple of hours to get there, about 80 miles away.  And the traffic is terrible.  Truck ran great, got just over 11 mpg for the 400 mile trip.  Our plan is to take the 23 onto the show field on Friday morning and leave it until Saturday PM.  








Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)

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Thursday, PM, July 28th.  We spent the day going about 200 miles R/T into the Simeone Museum.  What a great place with lots of unrestored cars.  We even got a tour of their shop where the cars are maintained.  I took about 100 pictures and will put them up on my pic site at some point.  But here are a few.


Going to get the 23 onto the show field tomorrow and spend the day on the show grounds and visiting the Bulgari Museum.  Tonight we are going to get hit with a huge storm and 1 to 2 inches of rain.  Glad the 23 is in the trailer.



































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I'll take the Testarossa, Cobra Daytona and the underslung, please....

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It is Friday, PM, July 29th.  Wow!  The Bulgari complex is something.  We toured three buildings packed with restored and unrestored cars; a fabrication, body and paint building; a maintenance building with row of lifts; and an upholstery shop.  He has it all.  I took pictures of lots of stuff for your enjoyment.


We got to the parking area by about 9:30 AM and unloaded the 1923 McLaughlin Buick.  She fired right up and we ambled along for about a mile to the event.  We got our parking assignment with a few other 20s cars.  Had a great time talking to everyone.  Then we went on a tour to see all of the Bulgari cars and equipment.  He had lots of employees there to answer everyone's questions.  He really has some very nice cars.  In one building he had a huge white painted room with rotating platform.  They said it is where cars are photographed, digitized, etc; inside and out for submission to the Smithsonian Museum.  The Buick Y Job was being done when we were there, and the Buick Bug was going to be next.  


The Buick show is being run very well, with lot of volunteers handling everything.  Great meet so far.  Tomorrow we all need to be on the field by 8 AM as the public will start coming in at 9 AM.  Rained in the morning, but nice the rest of the day.  Hope the rain holds off until the end of the show, which is 3 PM tomorrow.   We have a dinner to go to tomorrow at 6 with all the attendees; and then we head home Sunday morning.


I am also posting a few of the cars on the show field as well as some design study cars by Buick.  Boy, do they look nice.  The future looks bright for Buick if they build them.  




















































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12 hours ago, SeventhSon said:

I couldn't figure out what this Bulgari site was all about so I did an internet search. I thought John had all the fun, but the guy who has really hit the life lottery is written about in this story about the Bulgari site:



Lucky guy.

Lucky indeed!  What an opportunity!  Nicola Bulgari sounds like a pretty cool, down to earth guy; he should consider putting on a show like Jay Leno's Garage. :)

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