Getting this thing back on the road has been a little more challenging than I expected. After all, I drove it home 60 miles when I purchased it. Now I can’t get it out of the driveway and into the street.
When I last posted the car needed a water pump and I thought it might have a blown head gasket. I put a new water pump on and the overheating seems to be under control although I still want to put an electric fan in front of the radiator to help at idle. I’m also happy to report there is no blown head gasket. After a bit of tinkering I was able to diagnose the engine problem as a faulty carb.
Once I made the diagnosis I decided to take it off and dissect it. As you can see it had a bad case of the cruds. Rather that spend more time and money on this old carb I decided to get a new one. I got the Holley 650 with electric choke. I hope it’ll get a little better gas mileage than the old one. (I wasn’t even sure what size the old one was)
This is the new Holley 650 installed. Putting on a new carb solved the horrible running condition but there was still a problem with the vacuum advance. I checked the timing and wanted to adjust it but wouldn’t you know, the distributor was all frozen up in the block. It took a week of soaking in PB Blaster to get it loose. I was able to get the timing adjusted right but the vacuum advance is still causing a problem. As soon as the timing starts advancing with the vacuum advance it looses power and dies. I put the timing light on it to watch as the timing changed and at a certain point the power cuts off and the timing light goes dead and the engine dies until the advance decreases. Weird huh? I checked the plate in the distributor and all the point wires and everything looks normal. I disconnected the vacuum advance and it runs fine. I’ll just run it without vacuum advance until I can get it figured out.
Since the engine was running fairly decent again I thought we were ready for a little cruise. Caroline and I jumped in the car but we didn’t get far. We didn’t even make it out of the driveway. The brake pedal got mushy and I could barely stop the car at an idle. So back in the garage it went.
It had the old single bowl master cylinder which was so rusty I couldn’t even get the lid off to check the fluid level. I decided to order a new dual bowl master cylinder. Those things aren’t cheap anymore like they used to be. Anyway, it came in and I put it on and guess what? Still no brakes. So I pulled off the front drums to check the wheel cylinders.
Above is the culprit. I pulled the rubber boot and rusty brake fluid poured out. So I have some wheel cylinders on order. Since this is going to be another whole project I thought I might as well restore everything.