Mark Kikta

Buick Moto-meter help with disassembly

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I am hoping I can take my moto-meter to get plated but looking for some advice.  I took the moto-meter apart except for the thermometer part.  The glass thermometer is loose so it easily slides up and down but you can't get it out.  It does not appear to be cracked anywhere so I think it will work just fine.  I tried to unscrew the brass threaded base but it does not move.  I was thinking about cutting the bottom of the brass threaded base but I don't want to do that if it won't allow me to get the thermometer out and back in.  The plater said I need to take the thermometer out so I'm looking for any available advice on how to get it out without destroying my moto-meter.

My motormeter2.jpg

My motometer6.jpg

My motometer3.jpg

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Use a good penetrating fluid such as Tri-Flow, ATF, kerosine, etc (several threads on these options),soak for an extended period .

Eventually you "should" be able to separate as the lower section may be directly screwed in, or attached with a flange and small bolts.

Time and gentle pressure may work in your favor, but remember, these parts have had 100 years, and lots of moisture working against you

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Posted (edited)

On one of my meters I had plated my plater did not require removal of the glass tube.  I don't know if he dipped around all the edges, or masked off the glass. 

 

I could very well be wrong, but I don't think anything more unscrews.  I think you have disassembled as far as you can. 

 

What model Buick do you have? 

 

As an alternative to plating the body of the meter, you could paint it to match the upper body color of the car it is installed on.  It's a fine detail that looks great and saves money! 

 

20190218_173024.thumb.jpg.5b0708fcf363b991d91e22fb6f26efbd.jpg

 

As another example, I have an original 1927 Goddess cap that has a green painted section to match the upper body color on the car to which it was originally equipped, so I think painting is an authentic detail.  A lot of these details are lost after so many years! 

 

20190706_195311.thumb.jpg.2a7cfca447f085a93bb04bbbbd7a6da3.jpg

 

Edited by 27donb (see edit history)
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Mark,

 

Here is a photo of the Moto-Meter for the '16.  The meter body is new cast brass.  I used the old, original rings, screws, and glass discs.  Donb is right about the plating process.  There is nothing in the plating solution that will harm the glass temperature tube.

 

Terry Wiegand

South Hutchinson, Kansas

P7060509.JPG

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Posted (edited)

Mark,    Find another nickel plater.  I had mine plated and left the bulb in it.  The plating process will not hurt the bulb.  The glass is non conductive so the plating will not adhere to it.  

 

What I am concerned with is that it sounds like the bulb is loose.  The base of the bulb is held in something for heat transfer.  Some kind of ceramic??  Once it is replated you will need to use something to ensure that you get heat transfer into the base of the bulb.  Maybe just try your motometer on the stove and see if it is responding correctly.  

 

Here is my motometer rebuilding procedure.      Hugh

1139956394_Motometerrebuilding.JPG.79267a17b59f2bb1a210455fee23c409.JPG

IMG_8179.thumb.JPG.6453ce32a59972fd514658397fa0bf1a.JPGIMG_8180.thumb.JPG.aa753876383331480612a718d9beb51f.JPG

 

Edited by Hubert_25-25 (see edit history)
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I agree.  I am concerned about the heat transfer and the calibration.  I have been reading other forums ( Model T and Chevrolet and one guy had restored the thermometers in the past by digging out the old putty like material and resetting new thermometers in body putty or plumbers putty.  He said they worked trouble free using that method.

 

He removed the old thermometers by cutting the end of brass threaded piece to get at it.  I wonder if the new putty alone is a good enough sealant or would I need to solder a new piece of brass on the end I cut off upon reassembly? That might be difficult without breaking the thermometer?

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Mark, 

      Do a google search on "heat transfer paste".  There seems to be a lot out there to choose from.  I would not try to remove the bulb, just put new paste in there at this point.     Hugh

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I am also not real fond of a thermometer bulb as being my only means of protecting my expensive engine rebuild.   It doesn't work real well at night, and may not work if the fluid level is too low.  I have never understood the thought process of putting a temperature bulb in the header tank of a radiator.  It needs to be on the head so that if you are low on antifreeze, it will pick up a signal from the heat of the cylinder head. 

 

There are a couple of engine alarm units on the market.  These would be good to hide up in the dash.   $50 to $100.  Some have multiple temperature pick ups.  I am still working on this one, but I do plan to install one.    

 

http://enginewatchdog.com/tm1.html    

Hugh

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On 7/6/2019 at 8:02 PM, 27donb said:

On one of my meters I had plated my plater did not require removal of the glass tube.  I don't know if he dipped around all the edges, or masked off the glass. 

 

I could very well be wrong, but I don't think anything more unscrews.  I think you have disassembled as far as you can. 

 

What model Buick do you have? 

 

As an alternative to plating the body of the meter, you could paint it to match the upper body color of the car it is installed on.  It's a fine detail that looks great and saves money! 

 

20190218_173024.thumb.jpg.5b0708fcf363b991d91e22fb6f26efbd.jpg

 

As another example, I have an original 1927 Goddess cap that has a green painted section to match the upper body color on the car to which it was originally equipped, so I think painting is an authentic detail.  A lot of these details are lost after so many years! 

 

20190706_195311.thumb.jpg.2a7cfca447f085a93bb04bbbbd7a6da3.jpg

 

 

DonB if you ever decide you hate the 1927 Godess cap and want to part with it I am always a message away!!

 

Id like to have one some day!

 

Beautiful refurbished Motometer as wel, very classy!

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I think the reason the plater wants the bulb out is so it is easier to polish. The most important part of plating is the smooth shiny surface they plate onto. If it is not smooth and shiny, the plated part will not be either. Plating is electric and glass is an insulator so it won't come to any harm in the process, unless the pre-plating cleaning process etches it - it might if they use a strong caustic like NaOH.

 

First thing you should do is clean it up. You could even get the plating taken off and polish it yourself.

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Never had mine apart so can’t help there. 

 

I did place it in a pan on the stove to know where 212F is early on. 

 

Now that I have a thermal gun (they have become very reasonable and great for checking temps of exhaust runners for weak cylinders, rear diffs in tow vehicles and trailer bearings  too) I have found the mono meter to be very accurate.  It never sees actual coolant flow.  But it does see the highly saturated air/steam of the coolant. You should leave an air space above the core.  I can now after years, look at the mono meter and based on ambient know when my coolant level is getting low. 

 

When slowly filling a low cold radiator, listen for when the core ‘bubbles’ this is the point where you have just reached the top of the core and have covered the tubes so they bubble with coolant and escaping air. Then add a ~1/2 gallon more once the bubbling stops since you have filled the core and you are good but not too full.  It’s tough to see in there to get a good full level otherwise due to the flow deflector plate and overfilling just spits it out the overfill tube when running and people yell at you that you are boiling over. 

 

The see thru window of the mono meter is to alert you to the red and also to be seen at night in oncoming lights.  It works. 

 

Like me, many of you have other vehicles.  I keep a log of when I change their coolant on a rotational basis.  I put the still good used 50/50 from one of them in the Buick to protect from freezing in the Fall for storage and during the touring season just top off with water.  Repeat each season. 

 

Another lesson on storage.  Many old engines have a ring of mud around the base of the cylinder water jacket. Draining just water can leave this ring wet and there have been cases where this ring freezes and cracks the jug in what was thought to be a ‘dry’ engine.  Always store with 50/50. Or is a minimum soak that crud ring with some 50/50 if you have been running just water.  

 

Also the foot from a pair of pantyhose hose makes a great filter to temporarily place in the upper hose and secure with the engine out tube hose and clamp.  Crazy the crud you will collect. 

 

A leaking water pump shaft seal can and will suck air at cruise speeds causing lots of entrapped air in the flow and bad cooling performance.  A very common issue.  ‘Hey my leak goes away above idle!’   No, you are most likely sucking air. 

 

I blew 50 dried bug carcasses out of my fins with an air hose.  Who know how old they are.  Had to help. 

 

Pay at attention to fan rotation and pitch.  You wouldn’t be the first or last guy to put a fan on backwards or wire an electric one backwards.  Idles fine and at cruise speed the two air flows (ram and fan) match and you get no air flow.  I fixed 3 over the years that were brought to me with this issue after the owners gave up.  One guy only did parades for years because that is the only speed it would cool well.   Now he drives it like he stole it. 

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