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Trico Vacuum Motor rebuild


Axel57
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I have read a lot of older questions on the Trico vacuum motors and the Fricken wipers service is not good and that another guy called Clean_sweep in California might be helpful.

 

Can anyone confirm that either are available or where I can but parts or how to do minor repairs. This is for my 1942 Chevy Special Deluxe 5 pass. Sedan

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I have no recent experience with Ficken. I had a motor rebuilt by Melissa Klein (the latest owner of Clean Sweep) last year and although I have not been out in the rain much yet, it seems to work fine.  :)

 

I like to rebuild things myself, but if there is any unevenness, wear or warpage to the inside of the case where the flapper runs, wiper motors can be extremely frustrating. Gaskets are on ebay for some models. If you take it apart its almost a given you will need gaskets. The seal for the flapper could be problematic, unless someone is stocking a whole rebuild kit for your model. An NOS kit might not be a lot better than what you already have.

 

Look here:

 

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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I can only recount my personal experience with Ficken (Wiperman.com).   I did all the recommended tricks to get my '49 Packard wiper motor running but nothing worked (I could get it running while disconnected from the cable mechanism,  but it didn't have enough power to run the wiper blades).  I ended up sending it to Ficken and got it back very quickly.  The cost was reasonable.  The wiper motor runs like new.  I would have no problem using them again.

 

Edit:  This was some time ago... July, 2009.  However, the wipers are still wiping.

Edited by JD in KC
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A professional rebuild would probably be a better solution but I was able to refurbish some old Trico motors myself. I've had the rebuilders do some of my motors (none recently) and sometimes they worked for a long time while others slow down & stop after a few years and need another rebuild. I once was the (proud?) owner of 100+ greasy used 1930s-1950s Tricos that were removed from junk cars and sat on the shelf for years. I took them apart, cleaned everything up, got everything smooth inside, regreased the walls and lubricated the paddles with Neatsfoot Oil. The felt filters were cleaned and everything that moved got some light oil. I got at least half of them to work, some quite well, but the others did nothing or moved very slowly.......... I'd try to refurbish another motor myself, I've got two refurbished motors on my cars that are still working after 4-5 years. 

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Pay attention to whether they leak vacuum with the switch off. Mine did, and that is an unacceptable situation. I probably could have figured out how to get the switch and/or the flapper valve to seal up, but cleaning and relubricating the motor didn't make it run reliably either. The flapper seal in mine was cloth (as many are), not leather, and it needed replacement. That plus the uncooperative leaky valve convinced me to send it in.

 

I keep hearing about neatsfoot oil. That is the first thing I ever tried back in the 80s or maybe the 70s to revitalize a leather flapper seal in a wiper motor. It didn't work for me. Neatsfoot oil is thick sticky stuff, and it caused so much drag the flapper wouldn't move at all. I had better luck with transmission fluid back then (works on leather cups in carburetors, too!). I have heard of people using brake fluid. That sounds like a horrible idea to me. YMMV.

 

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
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