Matt455

V12 Newbie

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Hi all,
 
allow me to briefly introduce myself. I’m Matt, writing from ice cold Munich/Germany and have been in US cars for nearly 15 years now. My experience includes various GM cars with a 1972 Buick Riviera has highlight. My current ride is a like new 1989 Caprice Brougham. I've always wanted to have a Lincoln Mark V Bill Blass unless I discovered the Zephyr years ago.
 
Having adored V12 Lincolns for years I’m now about to act. Unfortunately they can hardly be found over here which naturally limits the available information and expertise. Therefore I deeply hope that you will share your vast experience. 
 
My target would be a 1941 Continental coupe but any model year would work (coupe prefered). I'm well experienced with maintenance and repair of classic cars but to buy one I need knowledge about the Zephyr V12 models to avoid Pandora's box...
  • If there is a general buying guide please share - with my German IP adress google will not show plenty of useful search results in US and Canada. If not - what are the most critical issues?
  • Any special testing to detect engine problems during a test drive?
  • How can I tell a 267 from a 292 and what are the key differences. I don't wanna end up with a car that has a wrong engine.
  • Is there any clear preference of one engine over the other and if so, why?
  • Is bore warpage really that common and can the block be rebuild though?
  • Will the aluminum heads work or are there similar warpage issues as with the late Cadillac 250CUI V8?
  • Any general recomendations to a Zephyr newbie? What are the most expensive spots in case of damage?
 
I know it's a big step from a "modern" Chevy V8 to an antique V12. But it's about time.... I love these beauties and I'm fully aware that they need special care and may sometimes may drive me crazy. But I'm sure it pays out!  
 
As said - I don't want to waste your time but searching from Europe is limited. So if you recommend me sources let me know!
 
Thank you very, very much in advance. Any helpful information is highly appreciated, including web sources for further reading!
 
Matt
 
 

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Hi Matt and welcome to the LZOC.  You might consider joining the club as there is a vast knowledge base within the membership.

 

Go through some of the post on the forum pages a , lot of your Questions pertaining to the V-12s will be answered there. I am not really sure of the differences between the engines you reference but as far as I know, they are basically the same.  Personally a bore warpage has never been a problem for me, but if you run into it, the block can be bored and oversized pistons and rings are available. 

Aluminum head are expensive and iron heads will work just fine if you just want a driver.  You might get a general indication of the internal condition of the V-12 by replacing the oil pressure sending unit with a direct reading pressure gauge. Low pressure at a hot idle, say 5 pounds is plenty, if you can muster 30 pounds of oil pressure at a fast idle I would not worry about it at that time.

with a warm engine, you can pull all 12 plugs and holding the throttle wide open, check the cylinder pressures on each one and write them down.  If the pressures are even though low, you might add some oil to each cylinder and recheck, if the readings all rise evenly, then the rings are worn. If one or two cylinders are low, it is probably a valve problem. Disconnect the two wires going to the top of the ignition coil before attempting the compression test.  All parts for the rebuild are pretty easy to source.  The web site has a "sources" listing you will find parts needed there.  One last suggestion, buy the book by Ocee Rich published years ago I think the title is The Lincoln Continental.  Huge section in the rear about rebuilding a V-12. Ebay had one listed and it may still be there, not sure. any other questions, just ask, a lot of very savvy V-12 guys here.  

 

Tom

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Hi Tom,

 

thanks for your valuable reply. I instantly ordered the book you recommend - there was one available on german ebay. I assume this will give plenty of answers. Also I further read through this forum which is packed with good information. I definitely consider joining the LZOC but my intention was to wait until there is a realistic chance to become an owner. Maybe I'll join earlier ;)

On my way I need to learn more about the cars and the technology used as well as defintitely get a feeling of realistitic car prices. That's gonna take some time but is already part of my personal enjoyment.

Yesterday I discovered a thread about original engines and apparently it is rather common that V-12 were replaced over the years. This is an interesting information as for my recent cars there was also this "matching numbers" discussion.

However. My Ocee Ritch book should fly in next week and I'll soak it up.

 

Maybe one thing to ask about spare parts - is sheet metal and glass available new/NOS or as repro or does it all come from scrap cars? What are the most hard to find / most expensive things? Just to get a feeling what should definitely be okay on a potential car.

 

Thanks!

 

Matthias 

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You should definitely join the LZOC if you are planning to buy a 36-48 Lincoln V-12. You will make friends in the Club and they will be your best resource for information, cars and parts.

There are very few reproduction parts for these cars, most glass is flat safety plate and can be sourced locally of from a specialist like Sanders Glass.

 

When you are looking for a car to buy, make sure that it is a complete car and running. Basket cases will cost you more to restore than you will have to pay for a fully restored car that will probably need more work, just to bring it up to your standards. In other words, buy the best complete car that you can afford and stay away from basket cases, as it will take close to a lifetime to restore one.

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I agree with19tom40's reply 100% There are fenders available depending on what you buy, internal and external engines parts are available are are standard transmission parts, gaskets etc.  it's all expensive.  Not much is cheap to buy on these older cars.

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Welcome, Matt ... good luck in your search!
 

Curious about your '89 CCB ... I used to have 1 ... loved it!

 

 

Cort, www.oldcarsstronghearts.com
pig&cowValves.paceMaker * 1979 CC to 2003 MGM + 81mc

"If I only knew then what I know now" | Lee Greenwood | 'Fool's Gold'

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Thanks all for you replies. Sounds all challenging but also controllable. I will definitly not go for a basket case. It has to be a running car in a stable working condition. In fact I'm ready to go the next step and care for such an old and exotic car. However my prime intention is to drive in it. As I supposingly will have to order every bit and piece from the US any interruption will take ages until I can fix it. Therefore I will try to follow your suggestion to buy the best car I can afford.

 

As fas as my Caprice is concerned I currently only have one picture on hand but happy to share... Even though it's a bit off topic - sorry for that ;)

Picture was taken a while ago in German Alps not too far away from Munich. It's a Brougham model with nearly all options except sports suspension package an leather seats. It's a US model that was taken to Germany when new. This car is truly a beauty and, rare enough when it comes to a Chevrolet Caprice, 100% original. Everything from engine to radio is 100% factory and every piece is acutally working(!!). Took me some time to restore what former owners have messed up (crank case ventilation, radio, carb, etc.) or simply didn't fix (headliner, remote outside mirrors) but today it's as if it just was taken from the dealer.

Interior is plush cabernet cloth by the way. I enjoy this ride on about 3000 to 5000 miles a year and never had any issues that were standing out of avarage for a 29 year old car. Love it, too!

 

But now back to V-12 ;)

 

Matt

Caprice Background.jpg

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Matt, I was intrigued by your message.  If you want to buy a '41 LC and your heart is set on it.  Well-- then what I have will not interest you.  I'm to the personal point in my life that I need to sell my '48 LC. (age and ambulatory issues)  It is a a beautiful car. The v12 has been overhauled just before I got it. The interior has been totally replaced.  All new leather seats and new carpet. Dark blue in color. There is one flaw, it has some rust issues ln the body behind the front wheels at the far forward part of the floor pan.  The floor pan does have new metal welded in,.structualy it is sound, but the rust is there.  If you are at all interested, please let me know.  I will send pictures and the provenance.  Glenn Lorei

Edited by b6vt (see edit history)

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Glenn,

 

thanks for this. I'm not so much in the later design, yet there are some color combinations I find are really tantalizing. My Ocee Ritch book will arrive tomorrow and for sure I'll immediately soak it up. For sure this will also help me to make up my mind. 

I'll drop you a PM with my email adress. Curious to see your car and hear her history!

 

Matt

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Dear all,

 

my Ocee Ritch book has arrived today. What a treasure. Thanks for that hint. I only merely browsed over the pages but it already underlines my intentions. It's fantastic source of information. Even my wifes loves it!!

 

However there is one thing in mind that takes my sleep (it's 4:45 a.m. here while I type this post - so I literally mean it ;) ): today's value. I know that this might be a sensitive topic however I reckon that this forum by far is the most competent source for information. I highly appreciate your opinions as I totally lack any market insight.

 

I've found two very interesting listings on ebay (I hope I may share the links here, otherwise tell me I will remove them):

41 Continental #1

41 Continental #2

To my limited knowledge and experience both cars are looking stunning, in particular the #2 really drives me crazy. Well I do understand that ebay may not reflect the same level of pricing as traditional car auctions however it often shows a certain price the market is willing to pay for things.

 

What do you think about the "winning" bids? Wrong time or realistic bid price? Moreover, coming from your vast experience and market insight (which I both don't have)

- where do you see today's realistic market prices for 1941 Continentals depending on overall condition? I'm neither looking for trailer queens nor basket cases.

- are there any options, trims, colors, combinations etc. that particularely in-/decrease the price?

- coming from the 1941 as a basis how do other model year compared to it?

Usually I use common internet platforms to investigate on the above questions but in this case I havn't found any solid base so far.

 

Second question would be about the current liquidity of the market. While browsing this forum I realized that there are a couple of offers from members that have lasted for quiet a while - months or even years. How hard is it to sell a V-12 Continental today? There are very few cars offered over here but watching them leaves the impression there is no turnover at all. Okay, they may be heavily overpriced leading potential buyers to import cars from the US on there own - which leads me back to the first question.

 

I hope my question don't offend any of you. Cars first and foremost are a matter of heart. However from my position it's nearly impossible to assess and decide whether a potential car is a good offer or if the seller tries to rip me off. If I let my heart decide I'll be bancrupt in days...

And short and mid term realizing that I heavily overpaid would for sure lower my level of enjoyment.

 

Thanks in advance for your opinions!

 

Matt

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Matt, the 1st car listed looked pretty decent, but had the cast iron heads, good for a daily driver, but not correct as they were polished aluminum originally.    Car # 2 was indeed a beautiful car and if looking for one, that's the one I would have picked also. However neither vehicle was sold at the prices shown. Those were just bids that failed to meet the reserve price the seller wanted.

 

 Value? That's a real problem to me to really arrive at, though great and beautiful, Continentals just don't seem to bring the prices I feel are  justified. If the car is a really perfect in all respects the asking price and value will be quite high, but it will be have to be perfect to be in the atmosphere of being a 100,000 car. My opinion , it all boils down to what you are willing to spend on the car you wish to purchase.  There are a few out there and sooner or later you will locate one.  But like has been said before, buy the best you can find as restoration cost are not cheap and if you start one,  it will take ten times longer than you ever thought and lots more money.  Taking a guess on my part, I think a realistic price for the car you are looking for would start at 25,000. But it won't be perfect, however time and effort will make it so. I would highly suggest if you do locate one, you try and find someone familiar with 40 and 41 Continental's and inspect the car before departing with your hard earned cash.

 

Tom

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Matt,

 

Take a look here, www.ecoastcc.com.    They have a maroon 41 Continental Coupe listed with a lots of photos, And appears to have the aluminum heads,  it looks from the photos to be a very nice car priced decently, 34,900 US.  I have not seen one at this price looking this nice. No gold interior trim either, it appears chrome but not really a big deal.  If it is a good as it appears, this would be one to have inspected as long as it is within your price range.

 

i tried calling them, no answer but I left a message for them to call me when they can about the car. I will let you know if they call and what they have to say.

 

Tom

Edited by Tom_Overfield
Information correction (see edit history)

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Thanks for providing the link tom.

 

Matt, 

 

I spoke with Linn Cummings from that company and he said that car is very solid.  He has it on consignment from the widow of the former owner.  He doesn't know a lot about the Lincolns but said it will run, and from the looks of it on the web site, I think you will be thousands of dollars ahead by buying something like this rather than one cheaper. 

 

Tom

 

 

 

 

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While your at it, try and find a Hemmings Motor News , March 2017,  its the old car bible with listing for cars I never heard of, but including everything else under the sun.  Each section with a car, say like your Chevy , is followed by pages and pages of parts.

In the March 2017 edition, there are 2 1941 Continental Coupes listed, very low prices for each.  You might find Hemmings on line as well.   It is a great source of information.

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On January 30, 2017 at 7:11 AM, Matt455 said:

As fas as my Caprice is concerned I currently only have one picture on hand but happy to share... Even though it's a bit off topic - sorry for that ;)

Picture was taken a while ago in German Alps not too far away from Munich. It's a Brougham model with nearly all options except sports suspension package an leather seats. It's a US model that was taken to Germany when new. This car is truly a beauty and, rare enough when it comes to a Chevrolet Caprice, 100% original. Everything from engine to radio is 100% factory and every piece is acutally working(!!). Took me some time to restore what former owners have messed up (crank case ventilation, radio, carb, etc.) or simply didn't fix (headliner, remote outside mirrors) but today it's as if it just was taken from the dealer.

Interior is plush cabernet cloth by the way. I enjoy this ride on about 3000 to 5000 miles a year and never had any issues that were standing out of avarage for a 29 year old car. Love it, too!

 

But now back to V-12 ;)

 

Matt

Caprice Background.jpg

 

 

I sure appreciate you willing to go "off topic" ... that is a GORGEOUS 1989 CCB!  I used to have 1, a bit more maroonish.  Pic was taken by a friend a few years ago; I was forced to sell it 09/01/2015:
WEBSITEpage_me89CC_ValK_July2013_OregonI

 

 

Cort, www.oldcarsstronghearts.com
pig&cowValves.paceMaker * 1979 CC to 2003 MGM + 81mc

"I'm feeling more alone than I ever have before" | Ben Folds 5 | 'Brick'

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Hi all,

 

sorry for the silence. I had a stomach flu (or however this thing is called) and was happy not to use my tablet for some days... 

Tom (both), thank you very much for you engagement and digging out this listing. In fact this looks like an interesting car to me. Budget wise it's more at the top end of what I could do as I will have to add plenty of cost to ship it, tax it and make it road legal in my country. I'd prefer to get one over here that's already been on the road so I just need to add my licence plate and will be good to go. I'm currently driving some calculation models, one now being based on the car above.

However your comments give me a valuable direction in terms of potential value.

Also I need to drive my LZOC membership. No matter if I will eventually succeed or cancel my intentions it seems to be a good idea to give some support to you guys as you are supporting me.

 

ScarredKnightfan: thanks for nice comment. Honour is always appreciate. Allow me to return this for your CCB. What a great condition. I never thought any Caprice would have survived like this. Luckily I was wrong!

 

Matt

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Matt, if you search the forum for Phil Knapp, the first posting that comes up is an ad for his '41 Continental Cabriolet. It may still be available. 

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Thanks. I remember having seen his post from early last year - was way out of my budget. But apparently there are some updates. May be worth a try!

 

Have a good day (mine is just about to end)

 

Matt

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Hi all,

 

I know it's a bad habit that people ask questions and then never get back... I'm trying to be different here. Currently there is little chance for me to get a V-12 Lincoln that fits my expectations and my bank account. So I decided to look into different directions and finally ended up with a 1970 Lincoln Mark III in pristine all original condition.

It's an unmolested car that very likely even still has it's original color. Also there are no cracks or tears in the interior. It's not quiet a V-12 but being a pre-emissions 460 V8 it is only slightly less spectacular to me.

It's my first Lincoln so hopefully it convinces me of the advantages of this fine brand ;)

 

Now I need to move over to the Continental people as I need some urgend replacement (e.g. wheather stripping) but don't know where to get a proper quality replacement...

 

Thanks for your support which was very helpful to me. There WILL be a V-12 Continental for me, it's just a matter of time!

 

Best

 

Matthias

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 Matthias, I have a 1937 V-12 that will have a brand new professionally rebuilt and the body is rock solid.  I have no room.  Call me if you have any interest.  847-997-9944

i have $23K in it and that's All I want for it.

IMG_0001.JPG

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Wow, John, that's quite a handsome car!  Bet it would be a wonderful tour car......

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Hm, a real beauty! I just bought that MK III. Let me think about it. Where is the car currently located? 

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