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Stearns Knight


alsancle
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I bought freeze plugs at NAPA. Stopped at Autozone first because it is closer to me. Autozone clerk: "Hi can I help you?" Me: "Yes I'm looking for some freeze plugs, here are the sizes" Autozone clerk: (funny look on his face) "Oh, are those for and engine?" Off I went to NAPA.

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6 minutes ago, Mark66A said:

I bought freeze plugs at NAPA. Stopped at Autozone first because it is closer to me. Autozone clerk: "Hi can I help you?" Me: "Yes I'm looking for some freeze plugs, here are the sizes" Autozone clerk: (funny look on his face) "Oh, are those for and engine?" Off I went to NAPA.

 

Thanks.  I just sent Ed a dozen 1 1/8 brass plugs that hopefully I right. 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Peterwoyen said:

Hi Terry,  I see what you're talking about.  It would be in keeping with Stearns to have pinstriping that outline the molding.  The existing stripes I've seen are about 1/16" wide.  They might have done something different for a show car or it might be sun reflection making them look wider in a photograph (?) On a tan and dark brown car could the stripes have been gold?    

 

Here is a blow up.

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Edited by alsancle (see edit history)
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12 hours ago, alsancle said:

 

You would think.   I suppose I should ask for a picture and a measurement,  but the guy with the car is ornery.



He’s an assxxxe................

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Another good Stearns day today. The more I work on the car, the more I like it. Things are going very well. Adjusted the oiling system today.........everything went according to plan.........Thanks again Mark. We will tear it down next week after we get a road test done with the new hoops. Have high hopes to get a good speed run out of it. I’m predicting an above average performance. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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Hurry up, I’m fixing it faster than your sending me parts...........where have you heard that one lately?

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Ed,

Let me know how you do with removing the water jacket. I pound on mine almost everyday and have been soaking the outside of the spark plug tubes in diesel since April to no avail.

Steve

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Pound on it like a red headed step child. 
 

Sometimes you have to use force when finesse doesn’t work. I would use heat, and air pressure. After looking ours over, I don’t anticipate any issues......famous last words! Call me tomorrow and I’ll make a suggestion that is a combination of finesse and force. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

No more clown colors ending the circus wagon look. Tomorrow’s photos will have her on the ground looking like it did at the auto show 92 years ago. No red wheels, no white walls, and new chrome snap rings......and the 20 inch rubber was enough money to give you religion. Speed run tomorrow after lunch........we shall see if the AAA 103 mph number at Murdoch Dry Lake is true to the reports from 1929. Anyone want to give odds that we hit the century mark..............hair on fire, hell bent for leather..........Phil will shoot a video riding shotgun.

 

As Sammy Hagar says, I can’t drive 55!

 

 

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Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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And we fixed the smoking problem. It’s now no longer smoking at all. Oil pressure is very good. Runs cool. Unfortunately we will now have unlimited mosquitos in the neighborhood. We didn’t have any before

 

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Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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Many often times talked about, and done in photo shop. He is what occours when you take the circus era "upgraded" look back to factory as delivered. Less is ALWAYS more pre war. 

 

REMOVED: Mirrors on side mounts. Canvas covers on side mounts. Painted wheels back to factory color. Plated snap rings as they were when new. All new tires and tubes. Complete under car service. Put oil in shocks and fixed leaks, they are working fine. More to come later, including a video up to 65 mph on the first test drive. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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1 hour ago, edinmass said:

 

 

Many often times talked about, and done in photo shop. He is what occours when you take the circus era "upgraded" look back to factory as delivered. Less is ALWAYS more pre war. 

 

REMOVED: Mirrors on side mounts. Canvas covers on side mounts. Painted wheels back to factory color. Plated snap rings as they were when new. All new tires and tubes. Complete under car service. Put oil in shocks and fixed leaks, they are working fine. More to come later, including a video up to 65 mph on the first test drive. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Looks good, but I don’t see the West PB topper in the NY auto show photo.  😉

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25 minutes ago, Cadillac Fan said:

Looks good, but I don’t see the West PB topper in the NY auto show photo.  😉

 

 

Just a bit of local flavor.........and it's rare as the car. 😇

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Fun fact, the white building in the background is Briggs Cunningham’s shop where he built all his cars in the 50’s.

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OK, I know somebody doesn't like sidemount mirrors, but note: they are in all the vintage pictures. Also no mirrors make lane changes dangerous. I assume you will be driving it in at least some traffic. I added side mirrors after some lane changes I made that resulted in extreme honking. Save the sidemount covers, I'll be glad to rescue them.

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55 minutes ago, Mark66A said:

OK, I know somebody doesn't like sidemount mirrors, but note: they are in all the vintage pictures. Also no mirrors make lane changes dangerous. I assume you will be driving it in at least some traffic. I added side mirrors after some lane changes I made that resulted in extreme honking. Save the sidemount covers, I'll be glad to rescue them.


Mark...... if you always drive real fast, you don’t have to worry about the lane  changes! Actually we use the little suction cup mirrors that go on the side of the windshield when we’re on tour. They’re five bucks. The pop on and off in 10 seconds. It doesn’t look like a pile of manure. We might put the mirrors on when we show the car in competition. I’m certain we won’t use them most of the time. I want to post an update tonight or tomorrow on how it felt driving. We shot a five minute video, and AJ is going to post it because I don’t know how to do it. It should be up tomorrow morning. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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And so it begins. The Stearns is now a “runner”. It’s out to breakfast with me today. We have less than ten miles on it so far. Figuring it out. What it needs, and what is has for bad habits that need attention. It handles well. I got it up to some speed........it is ridiculously fast............like DV-32 fast. Here it is at breakfast in real time.

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More good news........the side mount mirrors are NOT the factory units! Yes! I can toss them in the trash. Life is good. Sorry Mark.........can’t help myself.

 

 

😝

 

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Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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Looks like a great breakfast! I'm sure the Stearns is watching you through the window as you enjoy it. The Stearns has been enjoying all the attention, new shoes and all new fluids, and will reward you with some great runs at speed. I took the Brunn's grandpa out for a run yesterday afternoon with a spurt up over 50. Not bad for a car built in 1911. Still breaking in the new motor rebuild  (new sleeves, pistons, heads, etc thanks to Jerry S.).  Will A.J. pay your speeding ticket after your speed run?

 

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49 minutes ago, JFranklin said:

Really curious how you stopped the smoke problem?


🤭

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The smoke problem was an owner of many years who was convinced that the engine needed excess oil pressure, oil added to the fuel tank, and a marvel mystery oiler that was modified to dump oil into the intake.(All caused by being cheap, and an irrational fear of spending money on the engine.) We reset oil pressure correctly..........removed non stock items, sorted the factory oiling system, and set things back to square one. A little bit of work and research and we got the car set up to the correct factory settings. Typical case of owner and tractor mechanics that were smarter then the people who built it. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Make it round......and it will work. Interesting that everyone thought the engine was worn out......and the opposite is true. Great compression, oil pressure at idle when hot is 22 pounds. 90 percent of the work done to the car is fixing hack mechanics work. (Fortunately they were lazy, and didn’t do any permanent damage.) Steering box was as tight as a vise. Correctly adjusted it and it steer like a baby carriage.  This car will be a fantastic driver when we are done......it just keeps getting better. Video will post soon. Lots more work to do, but when we are finished it will be the best driving Stearns on the planet. 

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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No......decades before an egr. Just people who have no clue at fixing or maintaining proper motor cars. 99 percent of shady tree mechanics, and 90 percent of restoration shops have people working with very little talent or ability, and no supervision. It ruins more cars than rust, neglect, and the crusher.

 

Its a shame this car is probably the most famous eight cylinder sleeve valve car in the world. It had a reputation of smoking, and that “all of them smoke.” Bullshit. The long time owners of these cars spent countless hours with me explaining their cars, rebuilds, and fifty years of experience. They all said they don’t smoke never mind smoke excessively. They were right. Without the help of them, this car would still be stuck in a garage as art work. Their help was absolutely a godsend. And I was able to resolve issues twenty times faster with their help. To all the long term Stearns guys........THANKS!

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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That was Phil’s first time ever driving the car. I hadn’t given him any tips on how to drive it. Baptism by fire is the shop motto. He’s got short legs, and the bucket seats make pedal action difficult at best for him. The carburetor is off a boat......so acceleration isn’t normal or easy.....he adapted quite fast and made the best of it, when we install the new exhaust  and two barrel intake manifold and carburetor with a power valve......this puppy is going to fly. Would love to speed test it.......car is simply not ready for it yet. Brakes are great after all the new springs, lubrication and adjustment. Ride is much better when the shocks have oil in them. Engine is whisper quiet.Hard application of breaks and the car behaves well and stays straight. Tires are quiet, and well balanced. Front end and steering box were all correctly serviced and lubricated. Handles like a giant late 1920’s car. You can easily get into trouble hot dogging the car especially in the turns. Reminds me of our DV in the corners.........PAY ATTENTION!  I probably had ten miles on the car before this trip. It really hadn’t been down the road in any real way in many decades. It still needs more time........we haven’t even looked at the under hood yet. I’m certain the timing is off, and there is lots of room for improvement. Most interesting impression? It’s built much better than I realized, the sleeve valve motor is a torque monster, it will spin up to higher RPM’s than you think it should......and it’s still happy and quiet. It’s got ridiculous mid range and upper end power. It’s doesn’t come awake until you hit 40 mph.......then it pulls like a freight train.........and you run out of road and balls before you get to 70. I can’t find any faults with this machine or platform. It was a 10,000 car new. Work on it, drive it, and you understand why it was in the Duesenberg numbers area when sold. I met Herman Brunn back in the 70’s.......sure wish I knew I was going to be a caretaker of this machine......a I could have asked a hundred questions. I work on a lot of the worlds coolest junk.....I mean heavy iron. This car is truly a surprise in its build quality and performance. I would own one in a minute flat if giver the opportunity.

Edited by edinmass (see edit history)
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26 minutes ago, alsancle said:

Here is the video that Ed took.    I think it is pretty cool and the banter between he and Phil is awesome.

Love it! Sounds so smooth! Ed provides excellent example of what a co-pilot should do. Calling the lights, the corners..... excellent! Phil drove it like a pro.

Thank you for sharing!

 

Edited by Terry Harper (see edit history)
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