Jump to content

1960 lincoln continental wont start after working completely fine!


BryanFJ1
 Share

Recommended Posts

So everything was working fine till I got to the gas station to fill up the tank for the first time after the car was sitting for 30 years. I cleaned the tank of course before getting it filled up - but totally forgot about the fuel line! That's where it got me.

 
After a few minutes driving back home the car started stalling - clogged fuel filter.
In the trunk I had some old gas from the tank when I was cleaning it. It didn't have any debris in it and I thought I could use it and just put the hose in that jar and somehow make it back home so I did it. Made it home. 
 
The next day after cleaning fuel lines I couldn't start it like there was no spark. I checked the plugs and omg everything was covered in black goo. Some of them were flooded after I tried to start it. After removing the carb i was shockingly surprised to see that sticky black goo all over the intake manifold (part where i could see at least.)
 
image.png.3136777b262de9f390c91edf3f30ee05.png
image.png.2de3294247570e66d4cbe807f5a5d7a2.png
 
Cleaned set of old plugs. Cleaned everything i could reach. Put everything back. Added some starter fluid in there. Car started firing up a second right after I turned the key and then nothing. 
 
Checked all the plugs - everything is looking fine but the plug in the 6th cylinder is flooded. Like, always. Tried turning the engine till there was no gas spitting out from this spot. Tried to crank it again and I could hear like only one cylinder was firing up and the rest were doing nothing till it flooded again.
 
So at this point I am starting to think - is there a possibility that all of that old gas black goo could clog the intake valves to all 7 cylinders? Or am I just doing something wrong? 
 
image.png.658b8d32f7b0692a2f13fbc0c3b4980f.png
 
Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, BryanFJ1 said:

I cleaned the tank of course

Perhaps you can elaborate more about exactly what you did to clean it?

 

Remove the tank completely?

Send it to a radiator shop (or similar) for chemical cleaning? 

Sent it to a gas tank specialty shop (e.g. RENU)

Inspect it yourself with a bright light for cleanliness and lack of contamination before reinstalling it?

 

Anything less than a removal, aggressive chemical or mechanical scouring (e.g. sandblast), followed by a good visual inspection to verify the lack of debris will leave contamination in the tank. Cleaning out old fuel tanks is a serious and intensive job. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I’ve told this story before, 67 Lincoln Continental, thought gas tank was dry but it really had varnished old gas in bottom.  Started car, ran fine.  Next day, wouldn’t start.

 

Varnish had stuck every valve, bent push rods into pretzels.  Removed heads and had to drive valves out with hammer and heat.

 

I’d remove valve covers and see if you have same problem.  Expensive mistake to try to run a car when old gas exists anywhere in fuel system.

 

Sounds like you “cleaned” the gas tank by just running gas through it?  If so, all that did was start to dissolve the varnish…sorry for your troubles, hope it’s something simpler…

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, john hess said:

stuck valves from old gas ? flood it with seafoam through intake while cranking , let sit overnight... try again next day....? 

I got one spray bottle. Not sure how to use it while car is not running. People saying that you can make things worse with it 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, trimacar said:

I’ve told this story before, 67 Lincoln Continental, thought gas tank was dry but it really had varnished old gas in bottom.  Started car, ran fine.  Next day, wouldn’t start.

 

Varnish had stuck every valve, bent push rods into pretzels.  Removed heads and had to drive valves out with hammer and heat.

 

I’d remove valve covers and see if you have same problem.  Expensive mistake to try to run a car when old gas exists anywhere in fuel system.

 

Sounds like you “cleaned” the gas tank by just running gas through it?  If so, all that did was start to dissolve the varnish…sorry for your troubles, hope it’s something simpler…

Yeah, I was just running new gas through the tank to the container under it till it was "Fine". 

Ugh, I hope I can clean it with the seafoam cleaner somehow...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, BryanFJ1 said:

Yeah, I was just running new gas through the tank to the container under it till it was "Fine". 

Ugh, I hope I can clean it with the seafoam cleaner somehow...

Take a valve cover off and have someone crank the engine.  You should be able to tell immediately if valves are moving or not.

 

If not, valves are gummed up and plan on heads off, new pushrods, probably new valves......at the time I did it, I was working and didn't have time to do myself, job and some other work to get car engine sound was over $3K.

 

The "bargain" 67 LC convertible was no bargain and every time I turned around something else was costing.....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Took a video while I was trying to crank it.

Looks like I flooded the intake manifold pouring gas into the carb when I was trying to start the car thinking that it's not starting because of a clogged filter. 

So there was varnish goo and on top of that bunch of gasoline that was flooding cylinders. I guess I need to wait some time to evaporate that extra gas and try it again.

But while I was struggling with all of that I'm starting to notice that my starter is getting slower... Darn it

 

Hnet-image.gif

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Also, that was my first try to see how bad the 6th cylinder was.

(Yeah, forgot to disconnect the coil and didn't know there was that much gas).

Still don't quite understand why the 6th cylinder is flooded the most. 

 

Hnet-image.gif

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I'm trying to resurrect an engine that has been sitting a while, I'll feed the carb from a universal "pocket bike gas tank" that I hang from the hood.  I have a length of rubber hose and a shutoff valve that makes it easy to hook up to any project vehicle.  I bypass fuel pumps, lines, tanks, you name it.  I just want to see how the engine and carb are doing first.  Then I'll work back from there if things look promising. Heck, I just did this last night with a John Deere lawn tractor I got.  Looked like it was on life support, but it ran great on the gravity feed. 

 

Gas Tank - Plastic - 47cc 49cc 2-Stroke Pocket Bike - Version 80WH

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, misterc9 said:

Was the intake or engine changed?

Huh?  All Lincolns 1958-1965 used a 430 CID motor.

 

1958-9 used 4 barrel carbs. In the interest of selling economy (really an economical Lincoln??) the engine was fitted with a 2 barrel intake from 1960 to 1962. 

Were there other changes made inside the engine to squeeze a few more MPG out of it? (maybe camshaft changes?) Perhaps, but effectively the 2bbl engines were just a manifold swap. 

 

The compression ratio changed over the years but I would have to look up the exact numbers. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/2/2022 at 10:00 PM, misterc9 said:

My question was for Bryan. Was the intake or engine changed or maybe a four barrel adapter installed ?  I wasn't looking for a Lincoln history lesson.

The engine and manifold are original i believe.

The original 2 barrel carb was missing so I had to put a 4 barrel on it with a spacer.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Bad news everyone.

After I took it to the shop, they figured out that there is no compression in 7 out of 8 pistons. All the compression goes through the rings. They said to fix that is about 6-7k dollars to do so manually.

The last thing at this point I think is to find a strong decarbonizing solution to put it on top of the pistons and pray, so some of those pistons will gain normal compression after all. If that won't work - it's a dead animal on my shoulders.

I can always sell it to someone, but it's a really sad situation for such a small but destructive mistake. ;C

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bryan,

 

Do you have a way to check compression yourself?  If not, go get a compression gauge, remove all of the spark plugs, and do a compression test yourself.  I do not believe that all of the cylinders have bad rings.  If you really have zero compression on your cylinders, go to Amazon and get a cheap $10 scope that works with your cell phone and look at the valves through the spark plug hole.  Do you have stuck valves?

 

Joe

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, BryanFJ1 said:

After I took it to the shop, they figured out that there is no compression in 7 out of 8 pistons. All the compression goes through the rings.

That cannot be. Sure, all the rings could be bad or stuck. There would still be some compression. It would also run. Maybe not good enough to use, but it would run. No compression at all is almost impossible, and if it is 30 pounds or less, there is a 99% chance it is valve trouble of some sort.

 

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, dalef62 said:

Very rare to have 0 compression with stuck rings, I would think more like stuck valves.

I agree.  I’ve asked a few times, take off valve cover and watch valves, to see if they operate.  Dollar to a doughnut valves are stuck and pushrods are pretzels….still a couple thousand to fix but not a complete rebuild…I think the six thousand estimate is shop trying to take you for a ride.

 

All my comments on this car are based on the identical thing happening to my LC…..

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi everyone! Sorry for misleading everyone with my heads up.
What I meant is that there is no compression that is required for operational conditions for the cylinders.
First - they tested DRY and WET readings on every piston, and then they put every piston in top dead center, where they were blowing air into the cylinder to see where the leak was. If it was an intake valve - that would be air leak into the manifold and carburetor, if exhaust valve - leak to exhaust.
In my case all the leakage was into the oil filling neck, which means all the air goes down through the piston rings. 
image.png.70fcdb9e78b8865cc9f0ae13858c1063.png
Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK, wild speculation time because it is hard to troubleshoot through a screen. Feel free to be skeptical if you like, but keep in mind that fixing stuff like this was how I made my living for quite a while. I have compression tested and leakdown tested an awful lot of cars. You are correct that open valves should hiss through the intake or exhaust. RIngs ALWAYS hiss, even in new engines. Worn out ones hiss more. The amount that some of those came up wet DOES suggest shot rings, but you should not default to believing that. Why? Two reasons. First, since the car has been sitting long enough to have bad gas, it might also have stuck rings. That might sort itself out if you were driving the car. Secondly, if you have been trying to start it, the rings are both cold and washed down with fuel. They are at their absolute worst right now.

 

It is easy to miss the forest when you are looking at the trees. A couple of things that stand out to me, I have NEVER seen a compression test come out like yours from just rings. I doubt that 10 and 25 are even physically possible without valve involvement, maybe if there were big holes in the pistons that could do it. A lot of the others readings are highly questionable. That doesn't mean they tested it wrong. It means the rings are not the whole story. The other thing is bad rings wont make the car not run. They might make you buy a lot of motor oil, but at least you can drive to the store to get it, and you do have a big trunk. You were just driving it. Rings are not the answer.

 

I think @trimacar nailed it in post #4, and it has a bunch of stuck valves and bent pushrods. I also think the timing chain is jumped. If it were mine, I would pull the valve covers and look. I would then proceed to verify the valve timing. If it is jumped, you know you have to also do a timing chain.

 

I could be all wet of course, but it is time to pull the valve covers and look.

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Five minutes to remove a valve cover.  
 

Two minutes having someone turn over engine and see if valves are operating.

 

 One month denying that could possibly be the problem, since it ran so well the first time.

 

Beat my record, I denied the same thing for only three days….

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ahah, I'm not denying it. I just never had a time to do so, plus the weather was unpleasant this whole month for me. 

When i'm going to get the car back from the shop, yeah, i'll try to see what's what with the valve cover and i'll let you know. Maybe I will take some video. 
Link to comment
Share on other sites

22 hours ago, BryanFJ1 said:

After I took it to the shop, they figured out that there is no compression in 7 out of 8 pistons. All the compression goes through the rings.

Were you also not having trouble with a slow or dragging starter? 

If the engine is not being spun fast enough (like almost a hand crank) then any compression readings will always be low. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, BryanFJ1 said:

Ahah, I'm not denying it. I just never had a time to do so, plus the weather was unpleasant this whole month for me. 

When i'm going to get the car back from the shop, yeah, i'll try to see what's what with the valve cover and i'll let you know. Maybe I will take some video. 

Great!  Look forward to it…

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Yeah, I don't know what's been happening with the starter.  

First - it stopped turning to the clicking sounds, Then it started to turn the engine again. The shop guy said that the starter is fine.  But you know, maybe he said that because it was a part of his plan to show me these low readings? 
But even if it's a slow starter, these readings are kinda a huge difference between the pistons, isn't it? (Of course if these are real lol).
Plus it's not THAT slow like a hand crank. So I don't know...
Edited by BryanFJ1 (see edit history)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So I have finally got the car back. Took the cover off the left head, and yep, 3 out of 4 intake valves are sealed shut and pushrods are all bent. 

Don't need to take the right one because, you know, the picture is going to be the same. 
So what are my options here? New push rods are not very expensive to get. What to do with the valves? Pour something to dissolve the varnish on top of it and hammer them in? Timing chain is another problem, but I guess I can start with figuring out the valve problem.
 
 
PLUS since the Mechanic readings are correct (Since valves are closed shut), there is still a problem with all the compression going inside the engine with stuck rings. That can try to dissolve with some Marvel Mystery Oil.
 
photo_2022-07-06_14-01-35.jpg.8dd178e5d21121d2f2e1c447213ff522.jpgphoto_2022-07-06_14-01-36.jpg.32ee68a0b1cb77fcc8397a0447755fb5.jpg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

27 minutes ago, BryanFJ1 said:

PLUS since the Mechanic readings are correct (Since valves are closed shut), there is still a problem with all the compression going inside the engine with stuck rings. That can try to dissolve with some Marvel Mystery Oil.

If the valves aren't opening and you are turning the engine with the starter, there is no where else for the compression to go except by the rings. It's going to do that with stuck rings or with new rings. You should fix the valve problem before worrying about the piston rings. Valves stuck closed would account for the starter turning the engine slower than normal to.

 

And for your compression readings being low... You can't do an accurate compression check with the push rods bent and the valves closed. After you fix the problem with the valves, a compression test might be a lot better than what you think.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Well, gosh darn it, I sure hate to have to say I told you so....there's no cure for this except to take the heads off, you CAN NOT do it with some simple gook, and get the valves out (and I will tell you that's not simple, it will take heat and a big hammer), and do a valve job and replace push rods.

 

But, after watching video, maybe just the intake valves stuck, you'd be very lucky if you can get them free and put new pushrods in.

 

I really hate that this is the problem, but I'll say, from the exact personal experience, anyone who tries to start a car that's been sitting for years and runs gas through the fuel tank is a fool.  I was a fool, so I include myself in that fool pool.

 

Depending on who you know and trust, you have a couple thousand dollars to fix this if the heads come off..and again, the valves are STUCK and I mean STUCK......you won't believe what it takes to get them out, and it can't be done with head on engine.  I held the torch while another friend held the hammer.

 

I truly feel your pain....happened to me and I wouldn't wish it on anyone else....David C.

Edited by trimacar (see edit history)
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

Now what you need to do is figure out whether you are going to pull the heads or not. It is possible to do it without, but it is a lot of work. When I had this happen on a Ford 390 (an extremely similar engine design), I did it without removing the heads. I do NOT consider this less work than removing the heads, but if you are interested, here is how it is done. With the rockers shafts off, and the pushrods and spark plugs out and the battery disconnected, hit all the valve spring retainers  at the top of the valve spring at somewhat of an angle (on the corner). Do this with a brass or plastic hammer. This dislodges the valve keepers, stuck from decades of use, so you can get them out later. Also look for pieces of perished rubber valve seal laying around trying to plug the drains in the head. You will find some. Get it all out of there. Don't let any go down the drains.

 

With the piston down in #1, feed a bunch of CLEAN stiff twine, string, tactical cord, etc into the spark plug hole with a long enough tail left over you cannot possibly lose it. Rotate the engine by hand bringing the piston up so it stops hard against the pile of twine.

 

Now you may have to make a tool to compress the valve spring from the top. Commercial ones are made (Lisle or KD maybe?), and could be really useful, but probably wont work on quite every valve. I don't remember what I used. It was probably some combination of a piece of Unistrut and an oxygen sensor socket, or something like that. Maybe it was just a stud or bolt and drilled unistrut. You need to be able to compress the valve spring by pushing on the outer ring, and have a way to get in to grab the keepers (2 pieces) from around the stem with a magnet, so whatever you push with needs to have a big hole in the side somewhere. When you let the spring up (slowly) you are in. If there are shims under the springs, do NOT loose track of which valve each one goes on. Remove the remaining chunks of valve seal. The twine makes sure a valve cannot drop in. It also gives you something to push against on ones that aren't stuck that bad. You can now use some combination of solvents (brake kleen, berryman, gumout, etc.) and penetrating oil (liquid wrench, kroil, mopar rust penetrant, etc.) and a lot of tapping with a BRASS hammer to get the stems loose in the guides. Once they are loose, rinse the guides really well with brake or carb cleaner to make sure all the varnish is gone so they cannot restick. You will probably find the guides are loose from wear once you get them washed out. Keep in mind all those chemicals are winding up in the oil, so drain and change it before startup. Put on new valve (umbrella) seals. Viton is better if you can get it (maybe blue ones on ebay?). I believe big block Chevrolet aftermarket umbrella seals will fit if nobody lists your engine. Double check that the valve stem diameter is the same as big block Chevrolet. If the seals are a little taller that is probably fine. Use your homemade tool to re-install the valve springs and keepers. Turn the engine backwards a little bit and pull your string out. Then move on to the next cylinder in the firing order. Repeat the process on all other cylinders in the firing order until done.

 

Or, you could pull the manifold and heads (also a big job).

 

Pushrods are the next possible issue. I suspect this uses selective pushrods to set the lifter preload. That means you will need to check them. None of mine were as tight as Ford suggests in the manual, and according to the guy who reground my cam (who I trust) you probably want the preload on the lifters to be about .060" (.030"-.090") at worst. It appears that my 390 (which had never been apart before that) was setup looser originally than the Ford shop manual procedure by quite a bit. Ford apparently does not believe their own procedure. Anyway, you use different lengths of pushrod to set this, so if you have any straight ones, keep track of what holes they came out of! Make a piece of cardboard with 16 holes, draw a fan on it for "front" and stick the pushrods in the holes when you take them out. If, due to valvetrain wear, you need a length of pushrod that was never made (5 out of 16 in my case), there is a company in Oregon called "Smith Brothers" who will make custom lengths.

 

EDIT: @trimacar posted while I was typing this. I do think it is possible to unstick on the car, but I agree you wont believe how bad they are stuck. I think modern gas (for the last 20 or 25 years) contributes heavily to situations like this. I revived all sorts of long dormant stuff years ago, and even if carbs and fuel pumps gummed up I never encountered anything like this. When it finally happened to me about 5 years ago(?), the car was not long dormant. The gas was maybe 2 or three years old.

 

 

Edited by Bloo (see edit history)
Link to comment
Share on other sites

To check for stuck valves take off the valve cover and tap the valve (or the valve end of the pushrod) with a small hammer. If it goes *boing* the valve is working. If it goes *thud* the valve is stuck. The reason for using a small hammer and light taps is, you don't want to drive the valve into the piston hard enough to bend it.

 

This method is non destructive, that is, it does not bend valves or pushrods. In some cases you can lubricate the valves and get them working by alternately tapping and prying them up.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It looks like there's some oil sitting in the valvespring retainers.  It looks like those heads were recently rebuilt.  Maybe lack of oil (as mentioned above) or is the valve stem-to-guide clearance too small?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, EmTee said:

It looks like those heads were recently rebuilt. 

Was this not a very low milage car to begin with? Might just be that clean inside.

Twer it me I would pull the heads.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There does appear to be a very lacking film of oil.  I do  see some oil but there should be a puddle or two on the heads recesses.  At any rate, the heads need to come off.  Pistons out.  Hopefully perhaps a hone and new rings.  Rebuild the heads.   

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/6/2022 at 6:08 PM, Bloo said:

With the piston down in #1, feed a bunch of CLEAN stiff twine, string, tactical cord, etc into the spark plug hole with a long enough tail left over you cannot possibly lose it. Rotate the engine by hand bringing the piston up so it stops hard against the pile of twine.

Having almost lost a valve with the spark plug adapter trick of putting air into a cylinder to change vale seals on V-8s (only to have the piston move from TDC to BDC), I do this rope trick anytime I want to keep a valve from falling into the cylinder. Works almost as fast as the air adapter, plus you can hammer on the valve stem to loosen stuck keepers better.👍I use 5/16" or so clothes line. Maybe 3/8?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...