1937 Buick 66C

1936 C9 Maiden Voyage leads to questions...

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Greetings all,

It’s alive!!!  After a month at a local specialist shop, the entire brake system of my 1936 C9 airflow has been completely overhauled (new master cylinder, front wheel cylinders, new hoses, sleeved rear cylinders etc).  I picked it up from the shop on Tuesday morning.  I put a can of BG fuel additive and 5 gallons fuel in the tank, added a quart of Marvel Mystery Oil to the engine then drove it about 20 miles  around town over the succeeding three days.  On Wednesday morning, I had the stuck valve issue on cold start that I mentioned before.  The issue has not resurfaced since, so the combination of BG and Marvel Mystery Oil appear to be having a beneficial effect.  I cleaned it up a bit more on Friday then took it to a local Coffee and Cars event.  Later on Saturday I added another 5 gallons of fuel and drove it out to my warehouse (25 miles, highway driving).  The Airflow ran well: no noises, no overheating, good oil pressure etc.  In fact, it performed remarkably well.  This maiden voyage has brought forth several follow-up technical questions:

  1. What kind of gas mileage might I expect?  The fuel gauge does not register, and I really don’t want to be stranded on the side of the road until such time as I get the gauge working properly.

  2. Is the fuel gauge sending unit accessible without removing the tank?

  3. Using Overdrive.  I figured out the the “Overdrive” knob on the dashboard locks out both the overdrive and  freewheeling.  When does one move this knob?  There are occasions that I cannot pull or push this control.  When can / should this control be manipulated?  I live in the mountains, and will need to lock out the freewheeling on occasion to facilitate engine braking on downgrades.  Do I need to stop before pulling the knob?  I don’t want to damage or break anything.

  4. One of the bottom bolts securing the differential to the rear axle housing has been stripped and was glued into place with silicone gasket goo (this is one of the bolts that is removed to drain the differential).  No wonder the the differential was leaking.  This bolt is 7/16 head, with 1" thread depth below the head.  In order to insert the hole, the driveline would require disassembly and remove the differential.  There are 9 other bolts securing the differential to the housing, so I'm less concerned about having an strong fastening at this point, but getting something in place that will not leak. 

  5. Are there self-tapping, oversize bolts that could be used to address issue #4?

  6. How deep are the threads in the differential housing (can I use a longer bolt?)?

  7. Any other suggestions regarding how to address this without a major disassembly effort being involved?

  8. One taillight has a knurled brass knob securing the assembly at the bottom of the taillight housing.  One taillight has a “mystery” fastener.  What is the correct fasterner for the taillight housings?

  9. My owners’ manual indicates that the high beam indicator is integral with the light switch.  Is this true?  The shaft for the light switch does not seem to be large enough to work as a light tube.  If the light switch has been replaced, is the correct original switch available with high beam indicator available?
  10. The exterior door handle has pulled out of the LR door.  How is this attached, and what disassembly is required to address reattaching it?

My next project(s) are mostly electrical.  The list includes getting the brake lights and instrument lights working, reattaching the clock to it’s cluster (it’s off-center) and working through the strangely added auxiliary headlights on the front bumper.

 

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A really attractive car.  I’d love to help, but my limited expertise lies in restoring my 1932 Dodge Brothers sedan - a bit more primitive than your ride.  Hopefully, some Airflow owners will chime in.

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