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On 11/30/2018 at 5:18 PM, Terry Wiegand said:

The casting has some problems as you can see in the photo also.  The guys told me that there is always the possibility for this type of problem to become exposed.  Three manifold studs were also a casualty of the heating process.  The high temperature in the oven was well over 700 degrees.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Terry, I just keep coming back to this.

I know you also noted that other expert eyes suggested these cracks were caused by freezing... But just what happened to those 3 manifold studs?

How safe is it to send a 101+ year old block through this process? Can it really take it?

 

I ask because my fretful mind is deciding where to send my cotter-pin damaged E-35 engine. The place that ‘exposed’ these cracks for you is one that I am considering.

There isn’t a shop out there without a 6-9 month backlog of work - so I’ll have plenty of time to make an informed decision. 🙂

 

I do know this: It’s not going to any shop specializing in Model A engines. These earlier Buicks (not even this tiny 4-cyl) are not made up of a bunch of throwaway parts.

 

Ben

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Ben,

I truly understand your concern about putting a Buick engine like yours through the cleaning process.  There just is not an abundance of replacement parts out there for these engines like ours.  Let me give you more of the details about how I got to where I am today.  As of November, 2018, my engine had not been started and ran since July 4th, 1976.  I was the last person to ever drive this car on that day.  My parents began the process of building a new home just a few weeks thereafter.  My Dad drained the coolant from the radiator and block and covered the car up with old Army blankets in the one corner of his shop.  He did not put the stick on the clutch pedal and he did not drain the gas tank.  The car sat like that until late 1992 when I had my new shop building finished up.  The car has not been started or driven for going on 44 years.  That is a long time for a water jacket to start to do some funny things.  My Dad never ran Anti-Freeze in the cooling system.  He always used Distilled Water and a product called Rust Master.  When I started getting ready to bring this engine back to life, I ran into some problems.  Three of the freeze plugs were rusted through and I could tell that the water jacket was pretty well choked up with rust and scale.  I read about the thermal cleaning process here on the forums.  I checked into it and I felt that this was the only way to go with this engine.  I did find out that there are not very many places in the country that have the knowledge and equipment to do this process.  Precision Machine, Incorporated in Jefferson City, Missouri is the closest to me.  I called and spoke with Brian Hager (owner) and told him about what I was doing.  He told me to bring the block over and that they would be able to clean things up for me.  He cautioned me that the process can and does sometimes reveal problems like what happened with my block.  We pressed ahead and the photos I posted reveal the results.  Yes, I was disappointed, but, on the upside, things were very fixable, and that is exactly what we did.  With regard to the manifold studs - they thread right into the water jacket.  Brian Hager is of the opinion, and I share that thinking, that those three studs simply were eaten away with rust from the inside out.  I made new studs and installed them with a thread sealer.  The folks at Noland's Cylinder Head Service in Kansas City, Missouri repaired the cracks using the Lok-N-Stitch process and one would never know that there had ever been a problem.  They Magna-Fluxed the whole casting and pronounced it solid and good to go for the possible machine work needed in the cylinder bores.

They also pressure tested it at 45 PSI before I picked it up.  Here is something else to consider.  The radiator for this car is as clean as a whistle.  I had my local radiator shop flush and backflush it several times and he pressure checked it at a 1/4 pound.  He told me that that radiator is as good as anything on a brand new vehicle.  I was not willing to choke up that radiator with all of the crud that was in the water jacket.  A new core could be north of $3,000.00 - that would go a long way towards the engine rebuild.  I am of the opinion that if I am going to do this, I am going to take the time to do it right and do it only once.  Ben, you have my email address and phone number, give me a shout and we can talk things through and probably answer a lot of questions for you.  I am always glad to help a fellow Pre-War Buick enthusiast.  This is what it's all about.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

renobuickman@gmail.com

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Still tryin' to move forward.  I got the hood hold down latches installed on the hood sills.  I still need to put the hood lacing on the sills using the split rivets.  I will do that once things are bolted down and secure.  The guys at the paint shop did a beautiful job on all of the painted parts.  These will go in the big trash bags until assembly.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Noticing that my pretty cloth covered spark plug wires are eventually going to get oil covered if I don't do anything to keep them out of the oil behind the spark plug cover.  I made a plastic shield to keep the direct oil off of them.  The sheild is cut from some plastic packaging material.  It is shown here on the front side, but I installed it behind the wires but just underneath the spark plug cover on the top.  So other than mist, the wires will not have any oil dripping down on them near where the spark plug wires come thru the cover.    The dimensional drawing would be for 1925/26/27 .  Hugh

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In the interest of moving forward, I want to get the speedometer head installed back into the dashboard.  Several years ago I traded the original unit to the car to Russ Furstnow for this one.  It is the same unit with the exception that this one has the light colored face.  Russ had completely gone through this one and he told me that this one was one of the best ones of these that he had ever came across.  We did our swap at the Chickasha Swap Meet and I had him set the odometer to the same mileage that was on the original head.  I also had him go through the flexible cable and check to make sure that all of the chain links would operate as they should.  I should have the swivel unit mounted back on the front axle maybe on Friday.  It has just been so blasted hot here that a person doesn't feel like getting out in the heat.  I will post some photos when that is done.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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I'm still trying to keep moving forward with things on this car.  Here is a photo of the period accessory dash clock.  This is a porcelain-faced Sessions clock and from what I have been able to find out this was a modestly expensive timepiece back in the day.  I have had it cleaned and calibrated and it keeps accurate time for being over 100 years old.  Having its mounting base removed from the dash panel allowed for polishing out the dash.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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I spoke with the shop manager at Abrahams Machine Service in Davenport, Iowa this afternoon.  He told me that they will be starting on my engine next week.  I am going to go up after they have everything disassembled and cleaned to get photos.  This will be the first time that this engine has been opened up in 104 years.  I can personally account for the last 56 years that nothing has been done with this engine.  I will post photos when I get them.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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One has to keep moving forward or nothing gets done.  I spoke with the shop manager at Abrahams yesterday morning and got a dose of good news and some not so good news to go along with it.  The good news is the engine has been completely disassembled and waiting for cleaning.  The bad news is that a small crack was discovered in the #6 cylinder wall.  When the cracks in the water jacket were repaired they pressure tested the block at 45 psi with no reported problems.  The guys at the shop feel that since this engine has set so long without coolant, the crack has simply rusted shut and did not expose itself under pressure.  ALL of the cylinder walls were ultrasound tested for wall thicknesses and then Magnafluxed for any signs of additional cracking.  They were able to determine that the #6 cylinder was the only problem area.  The guys told me that this crack was more than likely NOT related to a coolant freezing situation.  It is the farthest cylinder from the radiator and would suffer from overheating quicker than the others.  There is adequate wall thickness to  bore and sleeve the cylinder and end up with uniform bore diameters on all cylinders, so this is the route we will be taking - only a minor setback I gotta keep telling myself.  I asked Dave how the oil pan looked after setting all these years. His answer was "Not too bad".  I told him that my Dad always run Marvel Mystery Oil in any engine that he owned.  His reply was - good stuff.  I hope to make a quick run up and get photos after everything is all cleaned up.  The rods and crankcase will be taken down to St. Louis to have new bearings poured.  We are optimistic that the engine will be coming home sometime around Thanksgiving.  More photos to come and updates as I get them.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas 

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This is a good time for an update on the engine rebuild progress.  I made a trip to Davenport, Iowa on 09/11 to talk with the guys at the shop and get some photos of everything while the engine is torn down.  They have gone through the oil pump and I was told that the gears looked really good and the bottom plate took minimal lapping to bring it back to where it should be.  The crankshaft has been MagnaFluxed and it is good in that respect.  The rod journals are in not that great of shape and likewise for the mains.  The main bearings and rod bearings are going to be sent out for the pouring of new Babbitt material.  The wrist pins will be able to be reused in the new Ross Aluminum Pistons.  The #6 cylinder will have to be sleeved to take care of the crack situation.  The front and rear camshaft bearings are in really decent condition, however, the two middle bearings will have to be replaced.  Try and figure that one out.  The camshaft has been checked and micro-polished, so nothing to do there but install.  All of the roller lifter assemblies are new.  All of the valve cages have been rebuilt with new stainless valves and new springs.  The rocker posts have new shafts and new bushings.  The pushrods are all new.  The starter/generator unit has been rebuilt.  The water pump has been rebuilt.  The manifolds have been ceramic coated.  With all of that said - here are some photos.  Almost forgot this detail - the oil pump drive spring is going to be made new.  There was an issue with the original spring that made reusing it not safe.  The one photo will show that.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas 

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On 9/13/2019 at 10:08 PM, Terry Wiegand said:

Another photo

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas 

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I guess I have to ask since all I see is a 100 year old spring (and it looks just like every spring I’ve seen on my car) - What is the issue here that makes reusing it not safe?

 

Granted, my coworkers have been badgering me to see an eye Dr. for 2 years since I can’t see the ‘burn’ on cutting tools anymore....

 

Ben P.

Edited by Ben Perfitt
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Ben,

Look at where the curve goes into the straight and you will see where the wire has a worn spot almost halfway through it.  It might be OK to use as is, but if the wire were to break, then the oil pump function would be lost and could potentially destroy the engine.  I would rather be safe than sorry with this situation.  I am having a new spring made as I write this.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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I need to get some more photos posted so that folks won't think that we're sleeping on the job.  The gasoline tank came back from Linings, Inc. out in Ravenna, Ohio.  The ReNu Ceramic Lining process is really the way to go with something like this in my humble opinion.  They really did a good job in straightening out most of the dents and dings.  It's off to the paint shop next.  I will let everyone know exactly what paint is used.  It has to be something that will be resistant to this ethanol crap.  One of the pistons, the rings for it, and the wrist pin were delivered to Ross Racing Pistons yesterday.  I should have the new oil pump drive spring in about two weeks.

 

Terry Wiegand

Out Doo Dah Way

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Time for another update.  The gasoline tank is at the paint shop.  Ross Pistons shipped the new ones to Davenport last week and they will have them on Tuesday (10/22).  I spoke with the shop manager at Abrahams on Thursday to let him know that the pistons were on their way to them.  He told me that they "were dead in the water" waiting on pistons and bearings.  They sent the bearing shells down to St. Louis to have new Babbitt poured and they are looking for them to come back any day now also.  This is really good news.  I think that there is a pretty good chance that we might be bringing the engine back home sometime around Thanksgiving.  Will keep everyone up to date on the progress.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Here is another update.  I took the Oil Sight Gauge in the dashboard apart for cleaning.  I am going to use O-Rings on each side of the glass lens to keep everything oil tight.  I sent the headlight reflectors to Frank Mance Plating in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for re-silvering.  They will be coming back home in the next week to 10 days.  Things like these help keep the project moving forward.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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The headlight reflectors came back on Saturday and I am very pleased with the result.  Larry DiBarry told me about Frank Mance Plating in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and they did the job for me.  When they got them the one fellow called me and told me that these particular reflectors were some of the nicest ones that they had seen in a very long time.  I asked about that and he told me that since these things are formed using really thin Brass, most of the time there will be stress cracks develop and then they need to be soldered before the Silvering.  He said that there was not one crack in either of them.  The next thing to be taken care of is getting the headlight buckets and mounting forks blasted and painted.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Another thing that is almost completed is the dashboard mounted Oil Sight Gauge.   In the above photo, one can see how 100+ years of gunk took its toll on the appearance.  I took it completely apart and thoroughly cleaned it and the difference is staggering to say the least.  I still need to polish out the face of the body before it goes back together and back into the dashboard.  

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

PB030638.JPG

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 Just an update on today's activities with "Remley".

I had hoped on getting everything back together to get the car started and back on the road again after 2 years.

Again, "Remley" the 1925 Master was a fluke as my friend who helped me get it running for the family in 2013 offered on it. When it came to me in 2016 I was planning on selling my 1925 Standard "Beulah", to put some good money into the Master. Right off the bat, (to me) it seemed as a better fit for us and the car wanted to fly! Much more powerful than our model 25. But the engine issues had started in the model 25 and I knew it was a full rebuild or sell it for a huge loss. In the meantime we could drive the Master and have fun with it while picking away at things to keep it roadworthy. "Best laid plans" you know....Of course that all changed about a month after we sent the engine of the Md. 25 out for rebuild. When the Master timing gear went out. So I had been hoping to just get things back together again to get some more fun out of it without a big expenditure.... I was mistaken...

Last week I had taken the radiator out to be checked and today the bad news. The 1970s modern re core is leaking badly. "Do you have another one since the bottom tank is cracked and slathered with much solder". (Harrison #195) No problem I thought. I had bought a 1924 radiator and shell at Hershey in 2017.

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(Harrison #192) It seemed not to have as much rust out at the bottom but still needed some metal repair. I knew that the core was useless since it was pretty scarred up. I had bought it as a more salvageable shell. The bottom tank on this radiator is caved in at the drain cock.

DSCF7877.thumb.JPG.498db2f74d02430646fd330502cc0e01.JPG I will Now I will take this radiator to my "Guy" to confer. My gut tells me he will not fool with it and I still will need a better radiator/tanks to re core. He quoted me for a modern core @ about $1,000 !!!!! I have to check with Jon Henry since I think he had a decent one at Hershey in 2018.

It's only $$$$$$.

 One issue is that there is a world of difference on how these 2 radiators are mounted in the shroud/frame. The 1924 (Harrison #192) is just about soldered at all points around the sides and the top mounting face including the top radiator support rod bracket to the top tank.

DSCF7876.thumb.JPG.873f78807d1e5dae8813a8d1b9e50491.JPGThe 1925 (Harrison #195) has a 4 small points spotted places to a more removeable shroud /frame. Much more comparable to my 1925 Standards mounting.

So right now I am deciding to be in for a penny or in for a pound!

Edited by dibarlaw (see edit history)
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While I had things apart I thought I would check to see how this earlier radiator/shroud would fit into a newer shell. I have a very nice un-rusted but painted 1926-1927 shell.

 My temporary plan was to repaint this shell and install the cleaned 1925 radiator until something better came along.

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I have seen quite a few 24-25 cars with the later shell.  It fits very well except for 3 mounting holes in a different location.

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What the inside of the 1925 shell looked like. It is worse than it looks. The front face was pounded in about 3/8 and is full of filler.

 

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And now for the not-so-hot news on the 1916 engine.  I spoke with the mechanic who is doing the rebuild on my engine yesterday.  He completely disassembled the pistons from the rods thinking that he could get the pistons ready for that part of the job by freeing up the wrist pins.  It turns out that 4 of the 6 were unusable.  They found new pins of the correct length and diameter.  That problem was solved.  I asked about the bearings and if they were back yet.  The answer to that question was NO.  My next question was if we might be getting the engine back around Thanksgiving time.  The answer to that was a NO.  I really hate to lean on these guys too hard because I want a good job on this rebuild, but, at the same time the waiting is starting to get a little hard.  I have to keep the thought in mind that there is getting less and less of these shops like this that are capable of doing a rebuild on a 100+ year old engine.  I understand real well now what Larry DiBarry went through with the waiting for his engine.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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I took the backseat footrest apart and cleaned and polished it up.  The center is almost 36 inches long, so one end will have to do for the photo.  The boss is pretty good about letting me put stuff on her counter-top to take photos.  This can happen only if the parts are clean.  This was one of the things that my Dad did early on when he bought the car.  He had quite a few of the small parts and pieces Nickel plated and I remember him grouching about spending $100.00 on plating.  He said that was an outrageous amount to spend on making things shiny.  Things sure turned out nice though.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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Terry:

While the radiator was apart I thought that I would have the filler neck re-plated.  The "better" 1926 Harrison #221 radiator I picked up still had the filler neck bashed down about 1/4" which popped off while I was removing the shroud. Another long tricky process of pulling up the top of the tank back into shape followed.

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The Plating service I recommend is Niagara Plating. They have done several small batches of parts for me and their work has been great as well as a quick turn around. (2 weeks) Also from what I understand very reasonable pricewise.

DSCF7918.thumb.JPG.8bc6456fed4eaf3714a0221a3d6275f7.JPG    24 pieces in bright nickel $260.

DSCF6891.thumb.JPG.d6a655fa0e888ce655e1fafca6e920a4.JPG Several years ago they did these for my Standard.

 

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Here is an update with some very good news.  I got a call this morning from the owner/manager of Abrahams Machine in Davenport, Iowa.  They finished the V-16 Cadillac engine earlier this week and it will be picked up sometime today.  The rod and main bearings for my engine will be shipped back to the shop early next week.  As I have come to find out, there just aren't very many places left in the country doing Babbitt work for the automotive business.  The sleeve has been inserted into the number 6 cylinder and as we were speaking on the phone, two cylinders have been finish bored to accept the the new pistons and he thought that by Monday or Tuesday of next week the block will be finished and ready for assembly when needed.  I was told that the crank would be next to work with once the bearings get there.  Dave did tell me that another Buick engine came into their shop this week.  He told me that it is a 1931 Straight Eight going for a total rebuild.  His comments about the engine were that the thing is massive.  This is my news for the day.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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My 1925 Buick Standard recently started running very poorly.  About 400 miles on the car.  Leaving me stranded.  Would not restart.  Started needing the choke pulled during cranking even after being warmed up, then quickly push it in.  If it would not start, it required a shot of starting fluid.  Fortunately it died near a Walmart the first time it died.   I have been carrying a can of starting fluid with me since. 
 
I checked dwell, timing, replaced the plugs since they were black, saw arcing in the plug wires - changed them.  Saw cracks in the distributor cap - changed it.  Ran slightly better but only after turning the air valve in a few turns and turning the throttle stop screw in so it ran with more throttle opening to keep from stalling.
 
In the end, still, it would not start after being turned off without a quick shot of starting fluid.  The carburetor would start flowing gas on to the ground when I stopped cranking.  A 6" diameter puddle of gas.  I decided that I wanted to check the needle and seat.  I also wanted to use a mirror to see if the venturi pot metal block had grown and was not letting the air valve close,    
 
I removed the lower brass float section of the carburetor.  Turning it upside down and sucking on the fuel inlet, no air was going thru, so the needle and seat were working well.  
 
I used a mirror and looked up into the bottom of the updraft carburetor.  The air valve was not moving to the opposite wall.  When I unscrewed the air valve adjuster,  the marvel spring inside was very rusty.  It was clean 6 months ago.  The rust had also gone between the barrel of the air valve screw and the air valve plunger.  This caused the air valve to either move very slowly or stay in one place.  I cleaned up the rusty spring and cleaned all the rust flakes out of the spring and piston area.  I cleaned up the spring on the wire wheel and did a quick tin zinc plate on it using my home plater.  
 
Everything works well again.  The only time it needs a choke is briefly on a cold start.  Any other time, just turn on the ignition and push the starter. It starts immediately.  I set the throttle screw back where it was.  As before, if I set the timing on full retard, the engine will lope at 375 RPM.  Sweet music.  I need to soak this spring in vinegar for a few days and then plate it again to do a better plating job, but long term I do need to find a replacement spring.  Also to others to inspect that spring in the air valve as it needs good plating on it.  
 
I fixed it just in time to be able to take my car thru our local "Festival of lights" parade.  It ran great.  The crowds loved the Ahooga horn.  
Hugh  
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  • 2 weeks later...

Here is another update with a photo.  This is the cover on the top of the Starter/Generator unit.  Karla Maxwell did the restoration on the brass Delco tag.  We are supposed to be 65 degrees here tomorrow and I will get this installed on the unit along with the distributor cap for more photos.  The headlight buckets and mounting forks were media blasted yesterday and will be heading to the paint shop in the morning.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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The starter/generator unit is starting to come together.  The next thing is to get the NOS Delco distributor cap out of hiding and temporarily install it for photos.  I cannot say enough good things about Rex Curtiss at Precision Power in Lansing, Michigan with the way that this unit came back to me.  As far as I am concerned, he is the go-to person for these old Delco S/G units.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

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