Jump to content

1937 Buick Model 48: RESTORATION HAS BEGUN! (Photo)


Recommended Posts

The next nasty job was the complete cleaning and degreasing of all the engine parts.  I took a day and many gallons of thinner and gasoline, and by washing, scrubbing, air dry and doing it all over again, the parts started cleaning up.  Back breaking work!  Once those parts were cleaned, I polished the crank journals and mains, and the cam shaft lobes and bearings.  I used a rope, and starting with a 400 grit automotive paper, smoothed out the surfaces.  Then did the same with 600, and finally finished with a 1500 paper.  The surfaces polished up great!

I got new pistons (1938 "domed" style), and new valve guides and valves.  My local machine shop installed the new valve guides, and the head is now ready to be installed.  So the next move is to begin engine assembly!

 

DSC_0120.JPG

DSC_0125.JPG

DSC_0134.JPG

DSC_0213.JPG

DSC_0225.JPG

DSC_0159.JPG

DSC_0230.JPG

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Gary,

You mentioned that the pan was tough to get off.

Probably lots of old Permatex to make up for the deformed bolt holes ?

A while ago we did a whole thread on "flattening your pan".

FYI 

100_1231.jpg

100_1232.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with Mike! My pan was like that as well, I braced the inside lip against a narrow wood block and used a large dowel and a 5 lb maul. Worked like a charm. And make sure the bolts are limited to 10 lb-ft torque on the reinstall to keep it from happening again.

 

Cheers, Dave

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Started building the engine Saturday.  Rechecked all rods and mains with plastigauge to make sure everything was in spec.  Everything checked out nicely.  (.002)  Smeared assembly lube moly on the cam bearings and inserted the camshaft.  Then treated the main bearing surfaces to the same moly-lube, and the center main thrust surfaces.  Oil holes were pumped with motor oil.  Once the crank was set, I torqued the four forward main caps to 80 pounds.  (IS THAT CORRECT?).  Then the flywheel housing bolts have to be attached before the rear main cap in installed.  Put new seals in the rear main, and again, inserted the rear main cap and torqued it down.  Bolted the flywheel on (I was really surprised it can be installed in 6 positions!  I thought because the timing marks are cast in the flywheel that the holes would be offset so it would only go on one way.) by putting the #1 rod journal at it's TDC position, and bolting the flywheel so the ADV.... shows through the flywheel housing hole above the starter.  Pressed in the pilot bearing, installed the clutch disc and pressure plate (it was marked with two punch marks) and new throwout bearing.  

DSC_0287.JPG

DSC_0296.JPG

DSC_0299.JPG

DSC_0334.JPG

DSC_0347.JPG

DSC_0360.JPG

DSC_0366.JPG

DSC_0380.JPG

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

So my next step was to assemble the pistons.  I bolted #1 piston to #1 rod with NO rings to check the clearance of the '38 style "domed" piston to the head.  There is room so I was quite relieved.  I checked the ring gaps and they were within spec.  So then moved on to installing the rings.  #4 ring went right on.  The three-part oil ring in the third groove also installed easily.  Then came #2.  The Grant rings are so hard, that when I spread it, it immediately cracked in half!  So, I tried another and BANG, another ring split in half.  And then the third one cracked.  I successfully installed one using the ring compressor, and by putting the ring on the outside, and sliding the unit over the piston, it slid right into position.  Needless to say, it was a disappointing end to a great day.  So I ordered new Hasting rings, and am waiting for them to arrive to finish the pistons and install them in the block.  So I primed, sanded and painted the pan and the flywheel cover gloss black and called it a day.  

DSC_0393.JPG

DSC_0412.JPG

DSC_0395.JPG

DSC_0400.JPG

DSC_0406.JPG

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Today I cleaned the tappets.  One at a time and kept them labeled 1 through 16 so they go back in the same place they came out.  I'm still waiting for my new piston rings, but I did hang the pistons.  I started by first sliding the wrist pin and bolting it in the proper position.  Then I marked that spot to make it easier to line everything up when installed.  Those parts are tight and don't rotate so easily once in the rod.  It made it much easier when sliding the pin in place.  

DSC_0479.jpg

DSC_0515.JPG

DSC_0580.JPG

DSC_0560.JPG

DSC_0565.JPG

DSC_0600.JPG

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

When you get the engine entirely assembled, Before you install the distributor, it is a good idea to prelube the engine and fill all the oil galleys by puting oil in the pan and making a tool  to drive the oil pump (counter clockwise) until you see oil at the rockers - be sure to plug the oil pressure line fitting.

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

The answer to both 1 and 2 is no.  The car ran very very smooth.  She let out some bluish smoke on acceleration, and you could faintly hear the wrist pins when it was idling.  Other than that, it was a very good running engine.  I had to pull the engine to replace the flywheel ring gear and the throw out bearing.  I figured it needed rings, and found a cracked ring in #2.  also, to fix the wrist pin noise, I decided to get new pistons.  But the crank, cam, rods.....all in great shape.   I didn't feel the need to have everything magna fluxed.

 

3. The block: The block is standard so I wanted to keep any machine work to a minimum.  I figured no one can bore it as good as Buick did 80 years ago so  I used a hone on an electric drill to simply "deglaze" the cylinder walls.  A ridge reamer was used to remove the carbon from the top of the cylinders.  I bought a set of standard 1938 "domed" pistons and there is enough clearance.

   The head:  my local machinist removed the original valve guides and installed the new ones.  I bought all new valves but re-used my springs, keepers... as all that stuff is all in great shape.

 

So very minimal machine work was done, although it is a complete rebuild of the engine.  

 

Aside:  My piston rings arrived tonight so Ill be installing the pistons in the block saturday, putting the oil pump in and the pan on and then moving on to the top end.  

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Today I'm absolutely sick to my stomach.

 I wrote on a previous thread that I would take a lot of the chrome parts locally to reduce the cost, but I will spend to have the grill, headlamp rims, hood vents....the centerpieces of this beautiful automobile, all chromed at one of the professional shops.  So, after weeks of research, phone calls....  I decided on Paul's Chrome Plating in PA.  Their staff is really great, and explained everything so I sent my grills and other parts via UPS.  Today, Dawn at Paul's Chrome sent me photos of the damage.  UPS dropped the box, or dropped something on the box, and BROKE BOTH MY GRILLS!  And I had everything double boxed, extra padded..... I can't imagine the weight that had to have dropped on the box to do this much damage!  My stomach is churning.

 

 

IMG_8677.JPG

IMG_8679.JPG

FullSizeRender.jpg

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I hope they were insured sufficiently to pay to repair them or replace them. You might want to call Dave Tacheny and see if he has some replacements available. It might be cheaper to buy replacements from Dave than having the broken ones repaired. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Double boxed and it still sustained damage? Sounds like a truck actually ran over it! In the last couple of years I have noticed more and more issues with UPS w.r.t. damage during shipment. It used to be UPS was much better than USPS but not anymore. Too bad.

 

Cheers and good luck,

 

Dave

Link to post
Share on other sites

Back in the garage today to continue building up the engine: 

Installed the rings on the pistons,

Heavily oiled the grooves,

Compressed the rings,

Greased the rod bearings with the moly lube,

Oiled the wrist pins

Inserted the pistons into the block and

Torqued the rod cap down to 40 pounds.

Repeat seven more times!

( I Didn't finalize the cotter pins yet, going to re torque tomorrow.)

Dismantled and cleaned the oil pump. 

Timed the engine and installed the timing gears and chain.

 

 

..I tried to upload photos but I'm having trouble tonight.   Haven't encountered any upload trouble before.

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

I better double check that.  I had the book out, counted the links and put a dab of white paint to make it easier to line up but working on the block upside down and feeling the tappets move.......trying to make sense of it all when 1 is on its power stroke and both valves are closed....  I'll look at it again.  Thanks for the "heads up"!  

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Please check out my work here.  I think it looks about right.  I guess I won't know for sure until I build the top end and follow the book, but I think I'm very close now:

 

Same photos...just turned on it's head so it looks more like the book.  I'm working upside down.

 

 

FullSizeRender 2.jpg

FullSizeRender.jpg

right side up.jpg

DSC_0725.jpg

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I double checked my timing marks.  I think I got it just like the book now.    also, beginning to run low on engine bolts and parts!  That's a good feeling!  getting closer to firing her up!

 

Larry....My oil pump sits on a gasket flush with the block.....is that correct?

 

 

IMG_8691.JPG

DSC_0741.jpg

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Gary,
 

You want to make sure that the oil pump bottom cover is not worn by the gears. If there is excess clearance between the gears and the bottom plate, you will have lower oil pressure than you should. You want to make sure you address that while you have it apart. This discussion probably explains it better than I have:

 

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

This is what the bottom oil pump plate on my 1925 Standard looked like before I lapped it. I think the one on my 1937 was just as bad. On my 1937 I lapped the plate and installed new gears.(1988) 8thousand miles later I am still running at 45 lbs. After an all day hot run it may drop to 30lbs.

58bd7868d5930_DSCF2221(1024x768).thumb.jpg.7fb40ea12825e267006106f845f427bb.jpg

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Seven Weeks Today:

Seven weeks ago I cleared the garage and made space for the Buick Restoration.  In that time, I have made some pretty good progress.  Today I "finished" the engine.  (Timing cover, oil pump, pan, balancer pulley, Then turn the engine over (fun); head gasket, head, push rods, rockers, push rod cover, adj valves to .017, painted valve cover...... few more additions and we're off to the races.  I took an hour for lunch and then removed the body bolts, put all four tires back on and pushed it outside.  Using a crane, I was able to lift the rear of the car, support the front of the body on horses and by utilizing "GO-JACKS" under the tires, pushed the frame out from under the body.  I'm exhausted!  

 

 

IMG_8272.jpg

DSC_0061.JPG

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Today's Engine Build:
I wire wheeled  the nuts and bolts and sprayed them gloss black.  

Painted/Installed the timing cover, then the balancer pulley

Installed the oil pump and the oil pan then turned the motor over on it's pan. 

Moly lubed the tappets and installed each one where it came from.

Permatex copper sprayed on both sides of the "graph-tite" head gasket, repeat

Using studs to line up gasket, and then install the head and torque in sequence to 65 pounds

Installed all push rods, then the rocker arm assembly.  Once torqued, I turned the engine over to do a preliminary valve adjustment to  .017"

Installed the pushrod cover, painted the rocker cover

Added 5 quarts of Break-In oil and using an electric drill counter clockwise, ran the oil pump and the oil made it EVERYWHERE!

So it needs to be painted, and then finish the "easy" stuff (distributor, generator, starter, carburetor, manifolds)  She should be up and running soon!

DSC_0867.JPG

DSC_0889.JPG

DSC_0900.JPG

DSC_0909.JPG

DSC_0915.JPG

DSC_0929.JPG

DSC_0949.JPG

DSC_0937.JPG

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

After lunch, I tackled the task of removing the body from the frame.  I was able to remove the doors myself, then I attacked the body bolts.  Let me tell you, eighty year old bolts JUST DON'T WANT TO MOVE!!!  It took a while, but I did get all 14 body bolts out and labeled so they go back where they came.  I measured the front mount so I have an idea how much to tighten them down when I reassemble so the doors, hood...hopefully don't get too out of position.  so I reinstalled all four tires, and using a "GO-JACK" I was able to maneuver the car and push it outside.  (63 degrees here in Jersey today!)  I used the engine crane to lift the back of the body.  Then by supporting the front of the body, I was able to push the chassis out sideways right out from under the car!  So while I wait for  the blaster to come over, I now have the chassis all ready to be power washed, de greased, and painted.  I am planning on replacing all the springs, restoring the shocks, and doing a complete brake job including rebuilding the master cylinder.  It will be so much easier to install the engine in the frame with the body out of the way.

DSC_0799.JPG

DSC_0804.JPG

DSC_0814.JPG

DSC_0980.JPG

DSC_0984.JPG

DSC_0990.JPG

DSC_0061.JPG

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Today I took advantage of the 71 degree day and rolled the chassis out to pressure wash, degrease and clean.  Took just under 2 hours to get 80 years of gunk off that thing!  

 

BUT...I did find what I think is the Date of Manufacture on the passenger side chassis rail!  February 16, 1937.  So she just turned 80 last month.  Thought that was kinda cool.

 

 I included a photo of the rear spring shackle before and after.  I was going to paint the engine, but tomorrow is supposed to be cold and snowy so I'll do that job tomorrow.

 I applied the decal to the freshly painted valve cover.  Trying to get something accomplished everyday.

 

 

DSC_0191.JPG

DSC_0175.JPG

DSC_0181.JPG

DSC_0217.jpg

DSC_0196.jpg

DSC_0219.jpg

DSC_0214.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not a Buick guy (although we did have a 54 Skylark once) but I have to comment on this thread:

 

1.  Your garage is awesome.  How you are doing a full restoration on top of a rug is beyond my comprehension.

 

2.  The detail and documentation in this thread is superior.

 

Carry On.

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! You even still have the spring covers. Mine were too bad to save.

 The place that worked on my 37 was to steam clean the front end of the chassis. The first thing on my list. I had already spent one summer on my back scraping and cleaning from the rear bumper to the X member. I did not want to go thru that again. Well they did not clean any thing on the underside. I am still finding things. The front end lower shafts on my car do not have renewable bushings as later cars do. 1936 design. The arms and shafts were very worn. They replaced tie rod ends and king pins and said all was tight. When I went to have the front end aligned and scraped the muck from the front end parts the lower shafts and arm wear showed up. I have yet to adapt the later arms with bushings to replace them.

 Larry

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would love to see this kind of detailed pictures for a 1920's Buick restoration which is more my vintage, but barring that, this is a great thread with excellent information.  Thanks for posting the progress, it is fascinating and inspiring!

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Painted the block tonight. I carefully covered all the block openings with blue painter's tape.   It's amazing how nice it looks when everything is the same color.  2 coats???

So now I have to paint all the engine accessories to get ready for the final build. 

My plan going forward is to restore the master cylinder and do a complete brake job.  Then replace all four chassis springs.  After that, a nice coat of chassis black (POR-15).  

Then I'd like to install the engine back in the chassis as I feel it's a lot safer there.  

DSC_0251.JPG

DSC_0256.jpg

DSC_0286.jpg

DSC_0280.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

Put a second coat on the block, and painted the intake manifold, thermostat housing and water outlet all Buick engine green.  

Used POR-15 High temp manifold paint to paint the exhaust manifold and the heat riser in Cast Iron Grey

Then POR-15 Gloss Black to paint the breather and the main leaf of the new rear springs.  (The other leaves are being powder coated...I didn't want to get any of the sand from blasting or the powder in the threaded bushing)

 

Then it was time to move back to the chassis and remove all the brake lines, blocks, clips, hoses, .....  Next post!!

 

DSC_0399.jpg

DSC_0406.jpg

  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

I ordered a full set of pre-bent stainless steel brake lines to replace the 80-year old lines on the car.  It was a job getting all the original equipment off the car, but I tried to do the job methodically and photographed every step from before I touched anything, to every step along the way so I have full documentation when the new lines come in.  Hopefully they fit easily.  

 

The steps I took to completely remove the brake lines, master cylinder, pedals..

1. Photograph and document every line, its origin and insertion and how it passes through the chassis

2. Remove the main line (the one that exits the master cylinder) from the brass block on the chassis 

3. Remove the main line from the master cylinder, being sure to have a bucket ready to catch the brake fluid

4. Remove cotter key and washer from brake pedal.

5. Remove two 9/16 bolts to free the master cylinder from the frame and slide it off the brake pedal as a unit.

6. Remove the remaining three brake lines from the brass block.

7. Remove the brake light switch, slide off the retaining clip and remove the brass block

8. Remove the intermediary brake line from the chassis mounting clip, freeing it from the rear rubber brake hose

9.  Separate that hose from the brake line that runs down the driveshaft

10. Open the driveshaft clips, and remove the driveshaft brake line from the rear (differential mounted) brass block. 

11. Remove the rear wheel brake lines from the brass block, and loosen them from the wheel cylinders.  Remove.

12. Remove the differential mounted brass block.

13. Move to the front of the car, and by holding the hose stationary with  a wrench, remove the brake lines from the hoses

14. Remove the retaining clip, unscrew the hose from the backing plate, repeat for other front wheel

15. Label all hoses, and mark them origin and insertion so when the new lines arrive, it'll help get everything sorted properly.

 

The liquid you see in the photos is PB Blaster....80 years doesn't give up so easy!  But I didn't want to twist any lines in case I have to reuse any.

 

 

DSC_0357.JPG

DSC_0359.jpg

DSC_0385.jpg

DSC_0427.jpg

DSC_0432.jpg

DSC_0448.jpg

DSC_0453.jpg

DSC_0479.jpg

DSC_0481.jpg

DSC_0488.jpg

DSC_0492.jpg

DSC_0508.jpg

DSC_0516.jpg

DSC_0519.jpg

DSC_0541.jpg

DSC_0547.jpg

DSC_0553.jpg

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Gary W changed the title to 1937 Buick Model 48: RESTORATION HAS BEGUN! (Photo)

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...