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1961 Mercury Meteor 800 restore


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Interesting on the head gasket leak issue. I installed head gaskets and tighten them down per the cars maintenance manual. I guess I will have to see what happens when I get running. When I pulled off the exhaust manifolds there were no gaskets, but no exhaust leaks either. Is the poping out of park common on the three speed automatics or the two? Mine has a two speed. Basicly it is a full size Ford platform, just a different body. I did check all the parts on the steering column and the detent plate didn't look worn and functioned very well. Thanks for the info. I guess I will have to do some research on these issues.

Edited by Laughing Coyote (see edit history)
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Interesting on the head gasket leak issue. I installed head gaskets and tighten them down per the cars maintenance manual. I guess I will have to see what happens when I get running. When I pulled of the exhaust manifolds there were no gaskets, but no exhaust leaks either. Is the poping out of park common on the three speed automatics or the two? Mine has a two speed. Basicly it is a full size Ford platform, just a different body. I did check all the parts on the steering column and the detent plate didn't look worn and functioned very well. Thanks for the info. I guess I will have to do some research on these issues.

Ah, ours is the 3speed Cruise o matic. I don't know about the two speed. I know through the years many lawsuits towards Ford over the problem.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well it's been a while since I posted. Been busy with the metal business so haven't had much car time. I did manage today to get the lifters installed, the intake manifold and some other misc. parts. I had to put the valve covers and air cleaner on the see how it looks. Still need to get the rocker arms, shafts, water pump, balancer, and other gaskets. I made a lifting bar so me and the misses could get that big old heavy manifold back on. To hard for one person. I also have been working on the under side of the pan and that is looking pretty good. Found a little rust spot that will need a patch, but easy enough to do. Hope to get the transmission looked at and serviced here shortly.

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Martin, we just got the Ford back and the right side of the engine is quiet. Had to buy a new exhaust manifold, as the original's little tab where the screw goes into the head broke off. Trouble is, the threaded area on the head is broken too. With a gasket, so far, so good.

On the driver's side, where the heat riser valve (?) is? Has a leak there.

Is your carb an autolite? Looks just like ours. Can I ask where did you get the dash pot valve on the side? We need a new one and no one seems to know where to buy one.....thanks.

Edited by exbcmc (see edit history)
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Thanks Dan. Seems like it's been forever to get it back together.

exbcmc, The card is an autolite 2100. The dash pot I found on Ebay. I saw some at Mikes carbuerator parts ( I think that was the name) on Google. I was looking for the carb gaskets and came across them and they had all kinds of parts. Try them?? There should be a gasket in between the heat riser and exhaust manifold and one between the heat riser and exhaust pipe.

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Thanks Dan. Seems like it's been forever to get it back together.

exbcmc, The card is an autolite 2100. The dash pot I found on Ebay. I saw some at Mikes carbuerator parts ( I think that was the name) on Google. I was looking for the carb gaskets and came across them and they had all kinds of parts. Try them?? There should be a gasket in between the heat riser and exhaust manifold and one between the heat riser and exhaust pipe.

Is the carb a 4 barrel? When I look up 2100 Autolite on Mikes Carbs, it says it's a 2?

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thanks sebastien buick. Haven't had much time to work on the car for a while now. I've been pretty busy with the business. I bought some power steering hoses that will be needed for later on. I'm going to take the two dash trim pieces to the powder coater to get them powder coated along witht the front bumper brackets. They will use their big sandblaster to clean them up so I can give them a nice coat of paint. Nothing really exciting. Other than that just working away and hoping to get back on the car soon. :(

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  • 4 weeks later...

Well I got the new water pump in the mail yesterday. It's all painted and has been installed. The engine is looking better every time I add something. Still have to get the rocker arm shafts, balancer, points, cap, wires and all the other fine detail pieces. I'm going to start to build the engine test stand so I can get it ready for when the engine is all done. Other than that just do the day to day stuff to keep on living.

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  • 1 month later...

Well it's been awhile since I posted any updates. Been busy painting the outside of the house and shop. Applying roof coating to both too.  The Mrs. is also having me do other painting inside.  I haven't worked much on the car, but I did get more goodies for the engine.  Have the plug wires, cap, rotor, clips, rocker arm rails, and some other little goodies.  I also managed to get the engine test stand just about ready to put the engine on.  It's going to be a big engine dolly until I get a radiator and all the gauges and wiring set up for it.  I'm hoping to put the engine on it the coming weekend.  If all goes well I will have some more pictures to post.  Thanks for the compliment on the engine edhd58.  Hope your project is coming along well.  :)

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  • 2 months later...

Hope all is going well for you. I just was thinking about your project here and thought I'd throw a stone in the water to see what if any progress has been made the last couple months. Scott...

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Hey Scott!

yes, I'm still here.  I know I haven't posted in a while.  That life thing is really been taking over everything.  Plus it's been hot.  I have been working a little bit here and there on the old Merc.  I will be posting some more pictures of the engine shortly.  I finally got the balancer in. Just have to install it.  It was back ordered for a while.  I also got the starter all back together, just need to do an ops check.  I have been checking the forum regularly to keep up on the news.  Thanks for throwing the stone.

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  • 2 weeks later...

As promised I have attached some more pictures of the engine.  I just need to get a 90 degree boot and connector for the coil wire.  The spakplug wires came with a straight one and it looks goofy sticking straight up.  All about the details.

 

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Martin, I'd never rush you or push you for more/quicker progress on this project as I really like the level of detail put into each area that you've addressed so far and look forward to the remainder of the project being completed in like fashion. You just do good proper work. You should have a really nice looking new old car when you get done. Scott...

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I know Scott.  Glad you got me to start moving on it again.  It's been pretty hot this summer so I get where I don't want to do much after a long day working in the heat.  I have to regroup on what I want to tackle next and just get to moving on it.

 

Thanks Roger.  Your Lincoln is coming along nicely.  Doing an great job on it as usual.

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Well I have the starter all done.  Still have to do a test run a few times to make sure it works.  I guess I will start work on the underside again to get that ready to be coated.  Should be ready by the time the weather cools down some.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 4 weeks later...

Well I finally took some time for the Mercury today.  It was a nice warm day and not windy so I pushed out the old girl and put her up on stands and got to work on the under side.  I used a drill and a wire wheel to see if I can speed it up some and get the old under coating and dirt off.  It worked pretty good.  Still have some areas where they put it on heavy, but I'm just going to leave it.  I went over the areas that I scraped and then continued to the back.  I had to stop just in front of where the front of the differential is.  My arms were killing me.  A 5 lb. drill gets pretty heavy holding it over your head.  I did wear one of my "bunny suits" and a full face respirator.  I could roll around and let everything fly and not get dirty or breath any of that nasty stuff.  I did have one other little rust spot that I had to cut out.  That went well and only took a few minutes to do.  Once I had some feeling back in my arms I wiped down the under side with laquer thinner and put a coat of sealer on all the patch seams.  I still have to add a little more in places so when I do the rhino coating that it doesn't show that it was patched. was a long day, but productive.  Not really the funnest part of the restore. Can't get the car done if I don't work on it.
 

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While searching for items on Ebay I came across a neat little fuel filter for the carb.  It's actually a filter for a motorcycle, but it's the same diameter as one of those big silver or plastic ones.  It's very thin and streamline.  I hate big clunking things.  It's a little bit longer than an 1" so it doesn't take up much room.  The car had a plastic canister type on it when I bought it, but it was pushing the steel fuel line way out from where it needs to be.  Looked goofy.  I just wanted more filtration before the carb.  There is a filter on the tank sender, but one more shouldn't hurt.  The weather is suppose to be getting unsettled so I will wait for another day yo finish up the under side of the car.

 

 

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Martin - Your doing a great job! My first restoration took me 14 years to complete ( marriage, kids, job etc... you know story ) I promised myself that was it, never again...  BUT, it must be some type of sickness, because I decided to do another one, picked up a document '69 Impala SS last December. I read over your thread last night, definitely motivating to say the least, I'm really joying it!

 

 

Steve  

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Thanks for the comments guys.  Steve, you are correct about the life story part.  I see so many nice cars that just need a little TLC and would make a nice restore, but cash flow is the biggest player in that game.  I'm hoping to have the Mercury done in 5 yrs, but that time line is not set in stone.  Sounds like you have a nice project to do.  Hope to see a restore thread on it if you haven't started one already.

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  • 1 month later...

I haven't had much time to work on the car again.  Slammed with ironwork orders and everyone wants their stuff for the holidays.....of course.  Plus El Nino has been making things wet around here to where I can't get the car out and work on the under side again.  I did manage to get a new parking brake pad made.  The original one was falling apart and didn't have any part numbers on it.  One of those hard to find parts.  I sent the old one to Mike at Then and Now automotive.  H That was the company that did my transmission mount.  I just got it back today and looks great.  Fits nice too.  They do great work.  Hoping to get a break in the weather and schedule to get back on the car.  :(

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  • 4 weeks later...

Thanks Tristan.  It's been a busy holiday season for me so far so I really haven't had much time to work on the car.  I did manage to put another coat of sealer on the areas that were repaired on the floor pan.  I've been picking up little things here and there on Ebay and other places.  I did manage to score another NOS "Meteor 800" door script.  Now I have two new ones for when the car gets done.  Can't have enough of those fragile script emblems.  ;)

I'm planning on shutting down between Christmas and New Years to work on the shop and do equipment maintenance.  Maybe I will have some time to finish up the under side and coat it.  :rolleyes:

Edited by Laughing Coyote (see edit history)
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  • 1 month later...

Well it's been a while since I posted anything on the Mercury front.  I ordered my starter drive and new hood hinge springs yesterday.  I'm also sending out the heater core to get rebuilt and the power brake booster as well. Those items will go out next week.  I'm also looking at taking the transmission down to the transmission shop in a week or two and get it checked out.  Other than that it's been really cold and wet. Doesn't make for a fun time to work on anything. 

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Martin, try not to let this project slide like I've let mine as I've really liked following along and was more than amazed at the progress you'd made and the quality that you put into what you do get done. Also, reading that you are taking your transmission in made me think that it was something that I could also do while my project is on hold. I've had a few people tell me that I could probably do it myself but I've never been inside one. I along with plenty of others will be watching for your updates. Scott...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Since the weather has warmed up a bit and dried out I was able to get my hood hinges cleaned up and painted.  I also received the new springs for them too.  Had to put a coat of red paint on them.  That's the color on the old springs that came on the car and I had some pictures of the exact same car with 18K on the clock.  So I would say they are suppose to be red. ;)  The booster has been shipped out along with the heater core.  Can't wait to get them back.  Then off the transmission goes to get checked out.

 

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Edited by Laughing Coyote (see edit history)
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  • 2 weeks later...

Yes Roger they add a little pop of color.  I received my power brake booster earlier this week and it looks great.  Power brake booster exchange in Portland OR. rebuilt it for me. There number is 503-238-8882 if anyone is looking for a booster rebuild source.  I also cleaned up my wiper cowl and put a coat of primer on it.  Waiting for the heater core to come back so I can finish up with the heater box that I took out and refinished a while back.  Got to get back on cleaning the under side of the body so I can get that part done.  

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well I have decided to pull the frame out from under the body and get it sand blasted.  I already pulled the wheels and started to tear into it.  The lower ball joints have been unseated and the springs are ready to come out and then I can tear down the entire front suspension.  Have to get a spring compressor since all the weight is out of the front of the car.  The rear diff is just about ready to come out also.  The weather has been great.  In the mid 80's (sorry to rub it in for the folks that are in the cold parts of the country).  I should have it all out in a week or two.  I have a little project to do for the powder coater so I'm hoping we can work it out in a trade deal.  I'm also in the process of putting in a 400 sq ft garden.  Want to try growing some good natural veggies.  So, needless to say I'm very busy all the way around.

I guess that keeps me out of trouble. ;)  

 

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