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Make it purrr like the Wildcat it is


Guest bigblueboat

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:) It depends a lot on how long the car has been sitting without being run, the miles on it, and how it was maintained in the past.

Usually you change oil & filter, tune it up. and check the usual maintenance items if it's been run fairly recently depending on how it runs now. If it has'nt been run for years, drain the gas and refill, drain and clean the cooling system, flush the transmission and brakes ( checking the condition of the stuff you drain), and check the tires and front end for wear.

What year & model Buick do you have, and what shape is it in?

:) kaycee

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One good thing to do, that does not cost a lot, is to replace all fluids in the car.

Motor oil and filter, antifreeze, transmission fluid and filter, rear axle lube, power steering fluid, brake fluid, everything.

Another thing I would look at very suspiciously, is anything under the hood made of rubber. Rad hoses, gas lines, vacuum hoses, belts etc. are all past their best before date.

If you do all this stuff it could cost $200 or $300 bucks but will eliminate about 90% of the usual breakdown points.

O ya, if the fuel pump and carb have not been rebuilt and replaced in the last 20 years they should be done too.

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Rusty is giving very solid advice here. A lot of the things that can cause an old car to break down (and sour it's reputation with the female of the household) can be proactively prevented. I have a lot of experience with sit-mobiles, the fuel pump and carb rebuild are mandatory IMO. I automatically contact then-now and order up kits, they make fresh kits that don't mind what we call gasoline this year. Daytona in Fla also makes great kits and their rebuild service is beyond reproach.

49K miles is still somewhat low for a car of that vintage, but I have learned to also check the bushings in the distributor, they wear, at 100K they are shot. Pop the cap (you probably want to put a full tune up kit in anyway) and grab the body of the distributor in one hand and the rotor in the other, try to move the rotor side-to-side, 12 O'clock-6 O'clock, 9 O'clock-3 O'clock and see if there is any play. If there is a simple re-bush job to the distributor will result in a much faster start and smoother performance all around.

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At some point, I would remove the valve covers and inspect the sludge and carbon buildup inside. You probably will need to replace the valve cover gaskets anyway. This is a VERY good way to tell how well the car was maintained before you got it.

If you find lots of sludge, I would do an engine flush before your next oil change. Notice I said an engine flush, NOT a power flush. On an engine that age, it would be way too easy to push a piece of carbon past the screen in the oil pan and into the oil pump or into a main bearing.

Also, with the dipstick at the full level, measure the oil you remove during an oil change. If you don't get 4.5 quarts out of the crankcase and filter, you have sludge built up in the bottom of the oil pan. With only 49,000 miles, I could almost guarantee you the car has sludge in the bottom of the pan. If you are pretty sure, jacking up the engine off of the motor mounts about 2-3 inches and removing and cleaning out the oil pan will be a job you want to get done pretty soon.

Also, consider a semi-synthetic oil. They will help clear out a lot of those deposits.

If the car has factory A/C, have the hoses changed out with new rubber if you are thinking of changing over to R-134a. This may be an area where spending the money to have an A/C shop do the changeover would be money very well spent.

Good luck and enjoy your boat, captain!

Joe

Edited by Reatta Man (see edit history)
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Guest bigblueboat

so far i have done the following:

oil change(more then once)

radiator flush(at least six times plus a rebuild)

thermostate

water pump(old one went bad)

k &n,

wires, distributor,plugs, ignition

valve cover gaskets

new belts

motor mounts (needed)

power steering pump

center rod (for steering)

front end alignment

new tires

new bumper(shinier)

wheel cylinders rebuilt

new shoes

wheel bearing

oil seals

full brake bleed

now i just need to get rollin on the greasing and lubrication

then that carb rebuild WILL I BE ABLE TO DO IT MYSELF?

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so far i have done the following:

oil change(more then once)

radiator flush(at least six times plus a rebuild)

thermostate

water pump(old one went bad)

k &n,

wires, distributor,plugs, ignition

valve cover gaskets

new belts

motor mounts (needed)

power steering pump

center rod (for steering)

front end alignment

new tires

new bumper(shinier)

wheel cylinders rebuilt

new shoes

wheel bearing

oil seals

full brake bleed

now i just need to get rollin on the greasing and lubrication

then that carb rebuild WILL I BE ABLE TO DO IT MYSELF?

That depends on how well you follow directions, there are a few simple things necessary for a good carb rebuild, the first being cleanliness, a clean carburetor is a happy carburetor. Get everything as clean as you can. Your local auto parts store can hot tank the major pieces, you might want to make a wire basket (out of fly screen) for the little parts so they don't get lost, then final clean the metal parts with lacquer thinner. Follow the set-up and adjustment procedures to the letter.

If any of this worries you there is a great carb guy here on the forums, Carbking, you could send it to him.

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Yes you can rebuild a carb yourself. If you have enough mechanical savvy to take something apart and put it together without losing parts and busting everything LOL.

First off get the factory repair manual instructions and follow them to the letter.

The instructions that come with the carb kit are incomplete and filled with errors. You must have the factory instructions.

Take the carb apart just far enough to clean everything thoroughly. Use a dip pail if possible, if not some lacquer thinners and a spray can of carb cleaner. Blow out all passages with air, if you do not have compressed air use the carb cleaner spray. Make sure all passages are clear DO NOT poke them out with wire, unless you use copper wire.

Now follow the directions exactly. Do not go getting ideas of your own. There are about 5 different setting to adjust, if you get everything right the carb will work perfect. You will think you are driving a Rolls with a supercharger LOL.

When you get your carb kit it's a good idea to get new float too. The phenolic floats they used back then tend to soak up gas.

If you can't get a new one put the old one in a warm place to dry out then coat with gas tank sealer. If you don't have any gas tank sealer don't worry about it, weigh the float and see that it is within specs.

One other thing. The carb rebuild is the masterpiece of the tuneup art. It should be done only after everything else, in other words tune up the ignition and make sure your plugs, points, timing etc are right on. Because the carb cannot be adjusted correctly until everything else is right.

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The repair manual that the factory supplied to the dealers will have complete carb specs and rebuild directions, in detail, for each model each year.

They printed these by the thousands, every dealer had one when your car was new. They can be bought very reasonable, around $50 bucks or sometimes less, and they are the most valuable thing you can buy for your car if you plan to keep it. Without one you are groping around in the dark on many things.

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...If the car has factory A/C, have the hoses changed out with new rubber if you are thinking of changing over to R-134a. This may be an area where spending the money to have an A/C shop do the changeover would be money very well spent.

Good luck and enjoy your boat, captain!

Joe

Or, you could simply use R414b. You can buy it at any appliance parts store without a liscence. The brand name that I've used is Hot Shot. It will work anywhere R12 was originally used. I've use it for 6 years without any trouble.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled topic...

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