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Avanti R2, 1963, refresh


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It is Saturday morning, June 22nd. A family picnic today so not a lot is going to be done on the car front. But I did manage to put the 23 McLaughlin Buick tool set together. Joe sent me a list of the tools from his documentation. So with his hammer, and an older set of pliers from my tool chest, I am declaring victory on the tool front. I will clean them up, but do not intend to paint as I do not believe that anything came painted. If painted it was probably just a semi-gloss black. I have a much used tool bag from my Unimog days that I will use to carry most of them in. It is well used and looks like it was made in the 30s or so. It is all in the presentation. Here is the final set.

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John: Looking good ! I have been trying to find out what was included in my 25's set. I know that Jay Barret's 23 sport roadster (the one we went to buy) had a tool compartment with tools in the drivers side door. See the March 2013 Bugle issue spotlighting his car. I had googled images of 23's when we were going to buy his car and found pictures of a restored 23-45 with its set of tools but it would not let me download it. Back to the garage to get my 37 trip worthy. Enjoy your picnic! Larry

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Bill, that S thing is the crank handle. Not something I want to use. The long rod is for the jack, a wrench goes on the end to turn it. The jack has two sets of screws, one for bringing it up to the car and a second one for lifting. A pretty stout piece.

It is Sunday, June 23rd, PM. Three weeks or so before we head off to South Bend, IN with the McLaughlin Buick. Time is marching on, and I have so much to do.

Today Tim, our son and helper, finished putting on the last of the two tires. The car is now on all of its wheels and is looking great with her new shoes. Tomorrow we are going to change oil and then take her for a spin.

Oh, and I borrowed three tire spoons from Greg to help us with the tire installation. Those spoons and the mechanical tire spreader made the task an easy one. But alas, I have to return the spoons to Greg this coming week. So have ordered a couple for my travel tool kit. You really only need two, so ordered two curved spoons. Who knows, I may need them someday.

I always like to take an interesting piece of automotive history to display with the car. So this year I will be taking an auto tune up and diagnostic machine that was made for use in the 20s. It is all complete and in great shape, to include instructions. It is the size of a small suitcase. I will pull it down tomorrow and take a pic for you.

Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)
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Speaking of things to take. One item will be a tire pump. Here is a pic of one I have. It is a single barrel, long throw, pump. I think that it is a teens pump. What do you think?

I also have a double barrel pump. That may be more appropriate. I will post a pic of that pump tomorrow.

Here are some pics of the motor analyzer. It is all complete to include all the connector cables and instruction manual. The date on the manual is 1934.

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It is Monday morning, June 24th. For your morning coffee we have a Greg report.

"Capping off the weekend. The pleasant weather was conducive to getting some things done on the black Avanti, but nothing that really shows.

I secured the new forward fuel line to the frame with a clip and screw.

I shot some undercoating to the underside of the left front fender.

I secured the upper and lower hardware of the front shock absorbers.

I installed the two shields that protect the torque converter housing.

I installed the upper control arm rebound rubbers. This required the old

chain around the frame and under the floor jack to elevate the arms enough to

sneak the rubbers in place.

With Friday's delivery of upholstery panel board in house, I laid out the two upper

rear quarter panels and have roughly cut them to shape.

I disassembled the heater and have begun cleaning and repair.

Like I said, time spent that doesn't show. A very pleasant weekend."

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Edited by unimogjohn (see edit history)
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Still Monday, about noon. Getting hot outside now, heading up to over 90 degrees with afternoon thunderstorms. This morning changed the oil in the 23 McLaughlin Buick. No filter. Takes almost six quarts to the fill mark.

Also headed up to attic and pulled down the other tire pump. I think that this one is more correct. It is a two tube, high pressure pump. The tires hold 60 psi. Not that I would want to pump them up manually. Here is a pic.

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John:

I found this site which discusses the Model T Fords.

http://www.mtfca.com/encyclo/S-T.htm#tool

Under "Tire Pump" it indicates that the double barrel tire pump was replaced by the single barrel pump in 1920 for the Model Ts. I don't know if this was an industry shift around that time, or if Buick or McLauglin followed Ford's redesign. Or maybe Ford was catching up with the industry that had already gone from 2-barrels to 1 barrel?

There is also a good discussion as to which tools Ford supplied with their Model Ts.

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Joe, thanks for the information. Some good stuff there. I am still looking for my parts guide and am thinking that there is a pic of a pump in there.

It is Wednesday, June 26th. Hay day. And it going to be a hot one again today, over 90 so going to get an early start. Over a 100 bales to pick up, stack in the trailer, take it off the trailer and stack in the barn. A lot of work for winter food for the llamas. Oh well. We usually put up close to 300 bales a year. Have about half of what we need with this load.

But Greg is not fooling with dry grass. Here is his black Avanti report. Progress, steady progress.

"Work on 5054 drags on. Lots of little things that take time and don't show.

I should mention that this restoration isn't a restoration as such. What I'm trying to do is return it to the condition it was in the late 'seventies. I had performed what must have been the first or one of the first frame up restorations of an Avanti. Sandblasted , primed, hand sanded the frame and everything else. Did it like it was a Duesenberg. First a show car, then a daily driver out of necessity.

But it wasn't a totally stock restoration. I'd rebuilt and installed an R-3 race engine from a pile of parts. Made some other upgrades to make it a real top end performer. That's the way I want it again, but I'm not doing the frame up thing this time.

One of those upgrades was a substitution of braided stainless brake hoses instead of the stock rubber ones. They might not have needed it, but I have renewed them and all their fittings and O-rings. Why not, it's only money and I might want to stop it someday. Today we picked up some fittings that were ordered and I have now installed all concerned.

A call today to the company that supplies the stainless steel brake lines, I've ordered the piping for the front calipers and it might be here next week. That would complete the brake system from the frame down. I'll order a new master cylinder and rebuilt brake booster at a later date.

It will be good to finish up the underside and get it back on it's wheels again."

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It is Friday, June 28th, AM No cars stuff for me today, yesterday either. Yesterday loaded, unloaded, and stacked about 150 bales of hay. At the end of the job I was spent. Today we take llamas to the vet to be lightly sedated so we can shear them. Most stand for the shearing and are not a problem, but a couple are beyond standing for it. Need to take the fiber off for the summer heat.

And for your morning coffee, we have a Greg black Avanti report. Braking news so to speak.

"Another week flown by. Too bad the progress isn't as fleet.

One evening was a boy's night out. Frank Gable with the ailing Corvette distributor was reason enough for a road trip to Rob's Repair, so Bill and I rode along. We all enjoyed the ride and hanging out with the boys from above the Mason Dixon line. The distributor was repaired, and points timed on his machine. It worked out really well. Rob did the work, Frank bought us dinner on the way home.

The stainless brake pipes were a surprise find on the doorstep last night. With no excuse not to get some work done, they then found themselves installed. Except for the power brake booster, master cylinder and it's connection, that means the service brakes are done.

Sure wish there was enough garden hose to reach the car. It's still filthy underneath. That will have to wait.

That's all the news fit to print."

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It is Sunday, June 30th PM. Less than two weeks now before we head to South Bend for the Buick Nationals. So today I changed the oil in the 03 Suburban, did a general clean out of the interior, and generally made sure she was ready for the 1400 mile round trip pulling the enclosed trailer. Checked the trailer tires, and they were 10 psi low so brought them back to 50 psi. I also made a list of everything we need for the week will be gone. You would think that we were going to leave for a month.

I then focused a bit on the 23 Buick. Spent an hour repainting and touching up the gloss black on the tire rims. A couple of the rims got pretty beat up during the tire changing. Started cleaning the tires and worked on the spare and the leather straps that hold it in. The tire was actually turning a shade of brown over the over the past few years of being on the car. It is the Universal brand tire that I bought in 09. It does match the new tires I have on the car. But it does look a bit used hence it looks appropriate for a spare.

Tomorrow I am going to pull the car out of the garage and work on the new tires. All of them have a wax on them so have to use some elbow grease to remove it.

Here is a shot of the rear tire, all cleaned up and ready to go.

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It is Monday, July 1st, PM. Had to do farm stuff this morning. Had three stumps from trees that went down last year. Every time I tried to mow, I hit them. So this morning, with the help of our neighbor and new high school graduate we dug them out. Tough work even for the two of us. Took us about three hours and that was some assistance of a chain saw and the tractor.

This afternoon I started on the exhaust issue again with the 23 McLaughlin Buick. One issue I have with the manufactured down tube was the connection between the pipe and the manifold. The pipe end had a 45 degree lip on it. I would have to use at least five gaskets if I wanted it to mate with the manifold. Rather than do that I took my trusty 2.5 lbs hammer and started to pound on the end of the pipe. My goal was to gradually beat it down to 90 degrees so it would be flat against the manifold and be able to use a single gasket.

After about fifteen minutes and many blows later I now have a flat flange on the pipe that should do the trick. It is cooking outside, about 90 degrees with about the same humidity so am going to give up fitting until it cools down a bit. Here are a couple of pics of the pipe and the flange.

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It is Tuesday, July 2nd, PM. I spent several hours this morning on car stuff. Measured, cut, measured, cut and was finally satisfied that the exhaust down tube for the 23 McLaughlin Buick would fit. After a couple of trial fittings I got everything lined up and installed. the exhaust is done. I may put on a end that directs the exhaust down rather than just straight back. In 1923 McLaughlin and I think Buick still kept the exhaust exit under the car, about five inches aft of the muffler. Here are a couple of pics. Also included is a pic of one of the new tires on the rear of the car.

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Looking good John. Persistance pays off. I will scrutinize more carefully at South Bend. Today called the vacuum wiper repair man to make sure he recieved my 37's wiper. Delivered last monday. His web ad states 2 week turn around so I thought that would give me a week buffer to get reinstalled before we had to leave for the Nationals. He indicated today that mine was probably not rebuildable. And that mine was at the end of about 70 or so do be done. Said that I should have sent it over a month ago. And no... he has nothing to substitute for it. I guess "RainX". Spent the afternoon adjusting the valve lash on the 37 one rocker was about .010 out and ticking badly. Took it out for a drive and warmed it up good before doing the rocker adjusting dance. About 1/2 of the valves needed readjusted. Nice and Quiet now!! Cleaned the little screen the external oil line that goes into the block to feed the rocker arm. More to do! Larry

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Larry, thanks for the update. Isn't it fun chasing all those little gremlins? See you in a couple of weeks.

It is Wednesday, July 3rd, AM. Raining its brains out this morning. Coming down hard. Farmers have had a tough time making hay. It has been raining off and on for a week. Not enough time to cut, dry, bale, stack, and remove from the field. We pay about $4 a bale if we pick it up in the field. During the winter you can pay up to $8 a bale if you can find it. We try to have about 200 bales on hand for emergency winter use. Need about another 50 before we are full.

I bought a couple of large canvas tool bags for the 23 McLaughlin Buick's tools and jack. They look kinda period. Better than having the tools roll around under the seat of the car.

And Greg has a report for us this morning too. Here is his report.

"I've been secluded with little contact with the outside world since a storm knocked our system off line last Friday. The fix was as simple as knowing which one of a hundred connections to unplug from a mysterious box behind a desk in a room as far away as you can get from this desk. I didn't.

In fact, I learned my lesson about messing with such things at my Mom's house.After watching TV. She left the room and I turned it off. Pushed a button on one of the array of remotes required to run the equipment. Of course it was a button pressed out of a sequence that would put a SAC missile launch to shame. Almost had to buy her a new TV with the trimmings. She figured it out.

Saturday I spent some time with the old Dodge Brothers. I'd had it out one day and it wouldn't start. Dry vacuum tank. I nursed it home.

The vacuum tank wasn't drawing fuel for the engine to use, so I removed it and broke it down. Probably the first time I'd been in it since the seventies. Things looked ok. A little bit of crusty debris, not much. I cleaned things up, made new gaskets and tried it out. The car runs fine. Now I'm wondering if the initial problem was because I'd parked on the highest spot in Warrenton, and it was probably two miles uphill to get there. Perhaps if I'd known to pull over and let the car idle, wouldn't have starved for fuel.

A little work on the Avanti 5054. I've put the steering column in place, hooked it up the steering box rag-joint, and now I'm ready to tighten the steering box to the frame. There seems to be an issue with some possible shims involved, so I haven't secured anything. Don't remember any shims, the trail grown cold.

Another component to be pampered is the transmission shift lever and linkage. The shift assembly shows signs of age, so it's apart and the components are being prepped and painted.

Day job. The Wright engine connecting rods still dragging on. Today I drilled the holes in the beams to allow me to attach the caps prior to drilling and boring for the bearings.

I'd send more photos, but this poor old standby camera, a Sony floppy disc relic was a victim of handling. Someone dropped it and knocked it silly. It seems to be working but not as effortlessly. And it can take such vivid pictures."

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Still Wednesday, but PM. Loaded up the Trailblazer with junk and headed off to the landfill this morning after the rain storm. Lots of people had the same idea. But I took the opportunity to stop by the local auto parts chain and picked up down turned exhaust tip. When we got home I also noticed that the A/C in the Trailblazer stopped cooling. Gee, if it isn't one thing, it is another.

But as luck would have it I have a couple of cans of 134 and put one in with my trusty little A/C line with gauge. Yep, really low on the cooling gas. Put one can in, cooler, but still low on the gauge. Rain has started again so will wait a bit for the other can. That should do it. I think the last time I put anything in was about four years ago.

And I also took some time to install the downward exhaust tip on the 23 McLaughlin Buick. It fit good. I now am done with the exhaust. Here are a couple of pics.

I have three things that I want to fix on the McLaughlin over the next couple of days.

First, the horn button is malfunctioning. If you press it the horn keeps honking. I managed to find another button assembly and will install it and see if that one works. If not I will have to rig up a remote button. The horn must work or I will lose points during the judging. It is a pre-qualifying check.

Second, along with the horn that must work, all the lights must also. I have one headlight that refuses to light up. I have never been able to get the light apart so fixing it may be more difficult than just checking the power and the bulb itself. The last judging the car when through the light did not work either, but they passed me since I had so many working. I just acted very surprised that it was not working. I hope a judge is not reading this, I spilled the beans and may not be so fortunate this time.

Third, I took up the slack on two rods for the rear brakes when I was working on the exhaust. Well, I lost a considerable amount of pedal. By tightening up the rods I must have taken other pushing rods out of adjustment. I have to spend some time now getting the rods back to their original adjustment to get a firm pedal back. There are at least five adjustments on the rods and two on each wheel per brake, all must be set just right to be able to stop. And remember, I only have brakes on the rear wheels. The emergency brake works great, it needs to. It is your last hope of stopping. I have had to use it a couple of times in a panic stop. It does really lock down those rear wheels, but then all you do is skid to a stop on those skinny tires.

With those three things done, the car is ready to go mechanically. Still doing cleaning everyday. Next week it moves into the trailer.

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I never post jokes, but this one hit a chord with me. Thought I would share it.

"I was visiting my granddaughter last night when I asked if I could borrow a newspaper.

"This is the 21st century," she said. We don't waste money on newspapers. Here, use my iPad."

I can tell you this. That fly never knew what hit him."

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Thanks John: The pictures of the exhaust reminded me of Charles's 1922 in Baltimore that had the exhaust pipe clamped to the rear axle. I wonder how the Buick dealership that bought it is copeing with it? Larry

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Larry, I have wondered that myself. Maybe we will see it at one of the MD shows.

It is the 4th of July. Happy Birthday America!

I spent the morning working on the 23 McLaughlin Buick.

The first thing I tackled was the dead headlight. I have 3.4 volts (low beams) to the plug so I have power. Tried a different ground point, no go. So the light has to come apart. So it is either the bulb or something wrong with the plug wiring itself. I removed the screw at the bottom of the light to release the rim. Then I tried to the rim by turning it counter clockwise. I cannot get it to budge, I tried clockwise, nothing. I just cannot get it to move. I even tried to pry the bottom where the screw goes with a small, nothing, no movement. So for now I give up.

I then switched attention to the horn. I check the power to the horn. It was 6.4 volts, good. Checked the ground, nothing. So I have a bad ground. I found another ground point and the horn ugahhed into action. So moved the wiring to the new ground point and hit the horn button. It works! I have a remote horn button under the dash that I installed last year to bypass the original horn button that would not go off. So for now I am just going to use the temporary button. This is what it sounds like, only much louder.

Here are a couple of pics of the horn and the horn button.

We have a local artist that does great work on farm and animal type paintings. Alice commissioned her to paint a rooster. She brought it to us today, and I must say that I like it a lot. So I have commissioned her to pain the Jaguar. It is not going to be a digital painting, but rather a bit primitive. We discussed the background and decided on a barn type structure. It should look pretty good. If it turns out then we plan to take it to the Jaguar concours in Reston, VA in October. Here is the rooster painting so you can get an idea of the style.

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Still the 4th of July, but PM. I just took a look at the Buick Nationals forum for the latest info. They said that they had over 500 registrations and more coming in. So it looks like it will be a great show. I know that lots of hotel are full. Glad that we made reservations last year.

Did a couple of more things on the 23 McLaughlin Buick. First, I shined up the gas cap. I have a nice one with the ears not beat to smithereens. It polished up nice. Then I found the little rubber grommets that I had in a baggie since I bought the car. I removed the metal tape that I had put around the holes and plugged most of them with the grommets. The judges did not like the round metal tape coverings over the holes the last time I showed the car. So they are all off now. You can see one of the round taped holes in my horn pics in a previous post. Now nothing sticks out and still looks very original.

As a final car thing I gave the Suburban a good wash and interior clean. She is all ready for the trip. Only things I have to do now is fill it with fuel and load her up. Took me over an hour to hand was the truck, it sure has a lot of surface area. Got the roof too. Had to use a 6 ft step ladder to get to it.

Here are a couple of pics of the gas cap, unshined and shined, and one of the firewall sans the silver metal tape.

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It is Sunday, July 7th, late AM. Done for the day and staying inside. Just too hot and humid outside.

Yesterday I adjusted the brakes on the 23 McLaughlin Buick. Pedal is nice and high now. Both brakes lock up when you really pound the pedal. It is a good as it gets, and it is still pretty scary.

This morning I got out the three different sizes of graphite rope for the water pump. I selected the smallest diameter one to use, it is in the small round can, see pic. You have to use two different sizes of wrenches to remove and tighten the big nuts on either end of the shaft. Snugged them up and will make adjustments when the engine is running. You do not want to put on the nuts so tight that they bind the shaft nor do you want them to drip water. So it is a balance.

Here are some pics of the tools I used, the water pump so you can see the adjustment nuts on the shaft, and then the packing sizes that I have.

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It is Monday, July 8th AM. We had a big rain storm last night so the pastures are really wet this morning. That may thwart my plans to put the 23 into the trailer. Going to take off the fitted sheet off the top and vacuum it. Hopefully it will not be too dirty from the cats using it as sleeping spot in the garage. Have to do some interior cleaning too. She is getting there now that all the mechanical work is done. I hope to have everything cleaned, packed, and loaded by Saturday.

Greg has a "nutty" weekend report for us also.

"It's been a good holiday and weekend. Got to play some, work some. It was an opportune time to work under the 5054 Avanti. Lots of unrewarding, uncomfortable, dirty work.

I'd overhauled the gear shift assembly and it's connecting linkage. Dropped it loosely in place and hooked up the clevis to the transmission. No easy task with little room to maneuver fingers. Realizing that the link rod from the throttle linkage needed to go next, I looked around for it. Not very big and easily hidden, it finally appeared. Cleaned, primed and painted, then it was hooked up. Not as much room for fingers, but finally installed and cottered.

These parts had to be in place before the exhaust pipes could be hung in place. Before this could happen I needed to clean the threads on the exhaust manifold studs. I'm using a Don Simmons stainless system, this one a little different from his usual. I wanted a set with the dreaded crossover pipes and that's what he made up for me.

This is the second Simmons set I've installed. There's not much on a car that's as hateful as brake and exhaust work. This set, like the other, fell right into place "Fits like a shirt on a broomstick". Thanks Don.

Straight thru mufflers, R-3 headers and a 288* cam. The neighbors are going to hate Simmons. Of course before the system was put up I had to make and install brake and fuel line clips and lots of other nuisance jobs. I've also installed the left side horn and rubber fuel line to the fuel pump.

The 1921 Dodge Brothers went out, worked fine, no fuel issues.

Still playing with squirrels. The day shift Grays are quite entertaining. They are getting more insistent. They'll gather at the glass sliding door and peer in like little peeping Toms. If you ignore them (like Barbara) they'll just sprawl out on the porch railing and stare in or else they'll do what they can to annoy you. She'll be sitting at the table with her back to the door and they'll climb the screen and hang there with their bottoms at her eye level. "Take that if you won't feed me!"

Making some progress on the mysterious flyers too. I wait until the grays go to their nests and when it's just about dark I'll make my rounds between three bird houses. That's where I know I can feed them. I make some noise (whistling the Rock and Bullwinkle theme song) and with a small flashlight let it (or them?) see me loading the boxes as feeders.

It's gotten to expect me. In fact tonight, in the dim light, I could see it perched near the favorite box, waiting. By the time I returned to the first box, a peanut had been snatched. In fact, I kept reloading and with me talking to it from about four feet away, it would come and get it.

Usually scampering around the trunk of the tree, on one occasion it flew in from behind me. And I was within touching distance from it. That's a cool thing to see. Summer's here!"

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Still Monday, AM. Well I have spent about three hours cleaning and dusting the 23 McLaughlin Buick. I did take the fitted sheet off the top and then used packing tape to clean off a little debris. The sticky tape works great. Looks very nice. I now pronounce the car almost ready to show. Once I get it in the trailer I will probably spend another couple of hours on some little things, but she is about as good as she gets. I will take some more pics once I get her out into the sun. I am not going to put in tire conditioner on the new tires. They have a nice muted shine to them. I really dislike shiny tires.

I have about all my stuff in the back of the Suburban, not packed or organized, but at least in one place. Only have my modern tools to pack for a "just in case" issue. I have all the cleaning supplies to load too. All in all about a 30 minute job.

Suppose to be in the mid 80's in South Bend. Going to take the big, 9 ft, umbrella and stand so we have something to get under during the Saturday car show. I am sure that we will drive the car around the local area, but it will be back into the trailer for the overnight period. I don't think that I am going to leave it out. I have heard too many stories of stuff going missing in the middle of the night. I do have a car cover and will take that just in case.

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Still Monday. Just a quick update. Was going to take the 23 to the trailer now that she is all shined up. But then I noticed a pin hole leak where the bottom spout meets the tank. I think I know where it is coming from so drained the radiator and took the Dremel with a little pointed wire brush tool and clean it up just a bit. Then mixed up some JBWeld and dabbed it into place. We will see if that works. No way am I going to pull the radiator and take it back to the repair shop at this point. I still have a bit of the radiator black left so will put that on the repair when the epoxy has cured. It should be an invisible repair. Here is a pic.

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It is Tuesday, July 9th, PM. Hot and humid outside. Humidity is like 80 percent. You feel like you are in a sauna.

Headed off to Greg's to return the borrowed tire spoons. Did I mention that I did buy two after we changed the tires? You will need them so figured I better have a pair. Found Greg working over the milling machine. He was taking metal off the Wright V8 engine rods. I did not want to keep him from his work so we just talked for a few minutes, got my tools for the Jaguar that he borrowed to get his 1921 Dodge home, filled up the Suburban with gass for the trip and got another 6 gallons for the 23 Buick.

When I got home I decided to take a look at the battery on the 23. I had noticed that there were a blue corrosion around the negative terminal so pulled it off and cleaned both the battery post and the clamp. Glad that I did that. There was quite a bit of gunk around the clamp. Then decided to pull the positive side. It looked good, but cleaned it up anyway. Here are a couple of pics of the before and after on the battery.

I got a note from a forum member. They wanted a pic of the clutch, brake, throttle controls on the 23. So I will post a pic here too. It is somewhat difficult to work the throttle and quickly hit the brakes or clutch pedals. Things are pretty tight in this arrangements. It is interesting that some very high end cars in the teens and twenty's had this arrangement.

Cleaning out the barn and planning to put in the Jaguar for the evening. That will wrap up my car duties for today.

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John- My '13 Stude has the same setup with the gas pedal in the middle. It is not much of a nuisance now but it was troublesome at first. Now the '12 Oveland is the current winner for awkward gas pedal. It is on the flat floor behind the two pedals and goes sideways towards the outside right to use. Very poor placement for my size 13's and I drive with the column control most of the time.

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Bill, it is even though at times with my petite 8.5 shoe size, cannot imagine a size 13.

Still Tuesday, but PM. Braved the heat and moved the Jaguar out of the trailer and into the barn. Am going to leave it uncovered for tonight. Then hooked up the little Kubota tractor to the trailer and made a big U turn in the pasture and got it lined up to go out the gate. I do have to pull out into the next property to get back on the road. Here are some pics.

I also ordered a new Optima battery for the 23 McLaughlin Buick. While the battery on the car is OK, it is probably nearing the end of its life. So rather than another wet cell battery decided to go for the sealed battery. Hope that it gets here before we leave. If not, oh well, we will be OK. We have a charger just in case.

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John- I have been rereading these Avanti threads looking for a section on the rear brakes. I saw a very nice series where someone showed how to cut out the spot weld and update the felt grease seal by pressing a modern seal into the outer plate on the rear axle. Did that thread area have the modern seal part number? Do you remember which blog, yours or Chris' I saw that in? I cannot find it now that I need it, of course!

Thanks,

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Well, at least I can say I was a pretty thorough reader, not just a picture type edjemeekashun...... but now I am bugged- where did I see that??????

Also, I just came up from the car and have an extra horse shoe shaped clip on each side. I think it retains the Ebrake cable to the backing plate after you put the fingers thru but the manuals do not show or list it. There is some looseness to that assembly so I think it goes there but I do not remember exactly where I took it from.

I like getting older- my short term memory just keeps gettin shorter every day. Say, did I tell you I saw this neat sequence on how to convert the grease seal.........

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It is Wednesday, July 10th, AM. Raining here this morning. Looks like I will not be loading the 23 McLaughlin Buick this morning. The grass in the pasture is too wet. I would not be able to make it up the little hill without slipping and sliding. Maybe the sun will come out later on. No rush anyway as I can always hook up the Suburban. Have to pack it first. Have most of what I am taking in it, but not arranged yet. Looks like I am taking the entire garage!

And here is a report from Greg.

"Avanti 5054 action. A little. Finding that the drive shaft was showing signs of rusting beneath the paint, it came apart. Last night I sandblasted it and got it primed, painted it this morning.

Didn't have any excuse not to put new Universal joints in it, so off to the NAPA store armed with some part numbers. Didn't work at first until I offered a Spicer part number. They could reference that, but they'd have to order it.

Armed with the same Spicer number, I went to the CarQuest place. With no Studebaker listed in their parts catalog, it did cross reference and they had two in stock.

Johnstone: CQ 210-0153 is the current PN.

Anyway, tonight I began assembly, front joint went well, the rear one didn't. I somehow dinged the cross , a needle bearing had become deranged with the resulting scar on one of the journals. Back to the store tomorrow for a replacement for the replacement.

Otherwise, enclosed are a couple pics relayed by old friend Andrew King of the Skies. He's on a working vacation and as the photos attest, he's misbehaving in a Fokker DVII. Bad boy!"

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Still Wednesday, but early PM. Boy I am sure glad that I decided to hook up the Suburban to the enclosed trailer this morning. Hooking up the connections I spied a deep cut in the electrical cable. I could see that one wire was badly damaged, and upon inspection, I have two wires cut and one with the jacket cut exposing the wire strands. Glad I caught this now and not when we were on the road. If the rain hold off this afternoon I will make repairs. I will braze the lines back together and use some shrink wrap to protect the individual lines.

On a more happier note, I wrapped my gift for the Buick Pre-War breakfast on the Friday of the Buick National meet. It is a great time to meet those that banter back and forth on the net. We always have a great time. One of the things we do is to bring a gift to exchange. They are not gag gifts, but usually something related to the pre-war years. I went into my parts bin to find a couple of thing that I am never going to use. I wish I could tell you what they are, but members of this forum and also members of the Buick forums. So it will have to be a surprise. Oh, and I used the only wrapping paper I could find.

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Still Wednesday, PM. Still hot and humid here. I had water just pouring off me when I was working on the trailer wiring. But got her fixed and everything works. Put in a short extension of wire on the broken one. The other two were fine except for the coating. Both got some black electricians tape. Put the rubber casing back in place and then used tape to close everything up. Rerouted the wire. The repaired break is now behind and below the emergency chains.

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John- I have been rereading these Avanti threads looking for a section on the rear brakes. I saw a very nice series where someone showed how to cut out the spot weld and update the felt grease seal by pressing a modern seal into the outer plate on the rear axle. Did that thread area have the modern seal part number? Do you remember which blog, yours or Chris' I saw that in? I cannot find it now that I need it, of course!

Thanks,

John, not trying to hijack your thread, but..........

Bill, when you find the source of this info, let us all know. I would love to try that on one of my Studebakers.

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It is Thursday, July 11th, late AM. Well the rain is holding off this morning so decided to start the 23 McLaughlin Buick and pull her into the trailer. She started easily on fresh gas, but I decided to get out and put the moto-meter on the radiator so I did not forget it. Bad idea, as the engine died. It was a bit of a struggle to get her going again. The choke has to be set just right for her to cough to life. I thought the battery was going to poop out on me, but the engine started.

My top it just a couple of inches too tall for the trailer entrance so have to put it down. I can put it down by myself, but it is a two person job to put it up.

During the judging of the cars on Saturday the tops on all the cars must be up to include a display of the side curtains. My side curtains are still original and brown. David Coco (Trimacar on this forum) said that he can do me a set so it is on my to do list when I get a few pennies in the bank. Maybe this winter. But at least I have them so all they can do is mark me down some points. Such is life.

Here are some pics of the car. Will head back out in an hour or so and strap her down. It is just too hot right now and my shirt is drenched. Summer in VA is just so much fun.

Oh, and the car is all packed too, except for our personal stuff. I think i transferred the garage to the Suburban.

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