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Identifying a Straight 8


Gunslinger
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Hello,

We Just rescued a 1934 mod 41 out of the weeds. We are trying to id the engine to make it easier to find parts. The serial number on the block, which was stamped in front of distributor, is 53530475. It has 3 studs that hold carb on so we know it's not a big block. Any manufacturing info would be great.

Thanks

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The Standard Catalog of Buick shows the 40 series engine at 233 cu. in, and the 50 series at 235 cu. in. The 233 ci is listed as 93 HP at 3200 rpm, and the 235 ci lists 88 HP at 3200 rpm. That is an interesting fact I did not know. Has to do with different bore and stroke, I suppose. Someone else will have to give you what the have as to what the numbers mean. to make sure someone did not swap engines.

John

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The Standard Catalog of Buick shows the 40 series engine at 233 cu. in, and the 50 series at 235 cu. in. The 233 ci is listed as 93 HP at 3200 rpm, and the 235 ci lists 88 HP at 3200 rpm. That is an interesting fact I did not know. Has to do with different bore and stroke, I suppose. Someone else will have to give you what the have as to what the numbers mean. to make sure someone did not swap engines.

John

The 1934 Series 40 was an all new car and fitted with a newly designed engine while the bigger Series cars continued on with the same engine design as introduced in 1931 ( until 1936 ).

The power to weight ratio meant the Series 40 could outrun ALL other 1934/35 Buick models and is credited as saving Buick from closure. Buick only produced a total of 46,924 vehicle in 1933 and the newly appointed Harlow Curtice decided a new lower priced car with performance that could give peppy lower priced cars a run for their money was the answer.

The Series 40 was introduced on May 12, 1934 and 28,893 Series 40 vehicles were produced in the short 1934 production run which gave Buick a 51% increase in production over 1933.

The 1934 233cubic inch motor shares many engine components with the later 248 motor.

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Hello,

We Just rescued a 1934 mod 41 out of the weeds. We are trying to id the engine to make it easier to find parts. The serial number on the block, which was stamped in front of distributor, is 53530475. It has 3 studs that hold carb on so we know it's not a big block. Any manufacturing info would be great.

Thanks

The engine number doesn't seem right!!

My copy of the Standard Catalog of Buick lists the starting engine number for 1934 Series 40 as 2984900

Dave Corbin will be able to give you accurate information on this number but it seems to be from a later model.

Do you have the chassis number - should be on an aluminium plate on the front right outer chassis rail.

John -The 1934 Series 40 is frequently overlooked because of the new larger engines introduced in the Senior Series cars in 1936. Most people are not aware of the importance of the 1934 Series 40 which went on to be renamed the Special in 1936.

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I agree with Stuart. You might want to recheck that number. Seems like too many digits or the incorrect ones even allowing for the first digit indicating the series number as used on the late 30's and up straight 8's. I'll bet Dave Corbin is out of town which would be the reason we have not yet heard from him on this.

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I'll 2nd Stuart and Dave as well the numbers seem odd. The series 40 mod 41 had a built in trunk Check the ID plate on the passengers side of the fire wall to be sure of the series and model. As stated earlier Dave Corbin is the numbers guru and will be able to tell you it's date of birth if you will. The 233 cu. in. motor was designed and developed for the new 40 series Buicks. The last ones being in the '36 Specials(series 40). The '34 & '35 233's had a water jacket cover on the left side of the motor just under the manifolds. In '36 the blocks were recast and had soft plugs where the WJC had been. If your not a member of the BCA you should think about joining. A lot of great people and spot on advice. These are great cars and projects just ask me I own one. Good luck with the one you found in the weeds. Where are the weeds in which you found your Buick? Mark, BCA # 45145

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Thanks guys for all the info. I was unaware of the importance the 34 Buick series 40 played in the companies survival. I guess it could be possible that its not the original motor. I was on team buck's website looking at the engine chart, and was slightly surprised to see that the engine number didn't match anything representing 34. So I came to the experts here for some info. Everyone here seems to be loaded with buick knowledge. Once we get fire in the engine, we have another task to tackle, converting cable brakes to hydraulic. Any ideas?

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Gunslinger-Pictures would be very helpful in ID-ing your motor. As to the brakes I'd examine the originals and go with them. They are very reliable and don't develop leaks. The only reason that I can see for going to hydraulic brakes would be if your car is going to be "modified" with some over the top power train installed in it. I like original in these "old girls" as there is just not that many left of the car that brought Buick back. "36 was the first year for hydraulic brakes on Buicks if I remember right others may have more input on this point. You are talking about a lot of work in changing over from the cable brakes when in that era the hydraulics weren't that well developed IMO. Remember "original' only happens once, "restore"can bring "her" back to almost where she was when she rolled off the assembly line probably in Flint, Mich. in 1934. Again good luck with your project. I really have to find a cup of coffee and get both eyes open. Mark

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It's an eight digit engine number, which means either the first or the last digit represents the series, in this case 5 = Super. If you assume the first digit is the series number (for 1941 and earlier) then the rest of the numbers put it in the range for 1938. But there weren't any Supers built in 1938. So if you assume the last digit is the series digit, then the rest of the numbers are in the 1949 range and that would make it a 248 from a 1949 Super. There was a '34 on ebay not long ago that had a 1942 engine in it, so it is at least possible:

http://forums.aaca.org/f165/1934-engine-swap-288387.html

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Once we get fire in the engine, we have another task to tackle, converting cable brakes to hydraulic. Any ideas?

I'm with Mark on this one.

The 1934 Buick had excellent mechanical brakes that I would venture to say outperformed and were safer than many of the early hydraulic systems introduced by other manufacturers.

They do need to be adjusted as per the manual and this is a long and somewhat tedious task - jack the car up - remove all wheels - lubricate and re-set all pivots - adjust cable length etc.

BUT once this major set up is completed it is relatively simple to keep them operating at optimum performance.

New cables are available ( certainly CARS INC have them reproduced ) and they frequently appear on ebay.

I also recommend purchasing NOS linings from ebay. The old linings are softer than modern linings and work much better with the " footpower " system. NOS are continually appearing on ebay for as little as $10 or $20.

If you absolutely decide you have to go the hydraulic route the easiest way is to fit the hydraulic system from a 1936 Special ( 40 Series ) but this is not a simple bolt on conversion and frankly it won't help braking capacity but may make maintenance a lttle easier.

Would really like to see some photos!!

Edited by 50jetback (see edit history)
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To add images on the bottom of the screen

1) Click on 'Go Advanced'

2) On the top row of your reply box you will see a paper clip. Click on it or on “attach files manage attachments" down the screen-.

3) The 'Manage Attachments' window will appear.

4) Click on the 'Browse' button for that window.

5) A browse dialog will appear. Browse to the location of the file on your computer.

6) Click on the file

7) From the 'Manage Attachments' window click on 'Upload'.

8) Close the 'Manage Attachments' window.

9) Submit your reply when the message text is complete

Be sure to check on the upload screen they are attached by scrolling down

Have also read there is a limit of 2000 pixels when posted as an attachment You can also add images to a gallery. Check your User CP (Control Panel)

For graphics software to resize images (and much more) try IrfanView - Homepage - one of the most popular viewers worldwide. Free to download with many features. Easy to use.

==

You can also copy a link from image hosting sites such as flickr

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Well I'm away for my computer and all my pics are on my iPhone . So I can not post any at the current time. As soon as I am able to complete the task I will upload a few. Until then just image a complete 34 with cracked and frosted windows, peeling paint and tarnished chrome. The interior is whole but well worn out and the roof insert is gone. on a positive note the tires still hold air as we put a camera down in the cylinders. They look like they were running yesterday. We're still going to fill the cylinders with ATF to be safe.

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  • 2 months later...

Dear Gunslinger:

Sean1997 has it right. The number is 5.353,047 built in March 1949. The 5 identifies it as an engine from a Super 50 series Buick.

He also correctly notes that it can't be for a 1938 as there were no Supers until 1940.

Regards, Dave Corbin

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