Friday, April 30, 2010

We’re Charging Again

Last night I worked to get the charging system to put out its required 14+ volts of DC. I knew it was either the generator or the voltage regulator. My first check would be to replace the regulator with a used one off the shelf to rule out the easy part. I had wanted to do the alternator swap which would include the voltage regulator, but the pressing need to get Lucy immediately back on the road overrode that desire. After nearly twenty minutes of searching, I couldn’t turn up an EM regulator, but I did find a couple serviceable generators and a generator rebuild kit. In order to remove the generator from the engine, I first needed to remove the fan belt and pull the idler pulley rearward to give me access to the forward-most mounting bolt at the pulley end of the generator. Then off came the nut and washer from the opposite end followed by the final mounting bolt back at the pulley end. With the generator off the engine I could see there wasn’t much life left to the two brushes, so I replaced them with the two new ones out of the rebuild kit. All that was required to do that was to remove the two long bolts and pull off the rear cover to give me access to the brushes and the two associated screw terminals. The new brushes went into place easily and reassembly was uneventful as well. My first couple generator installations were painful and frustrating, but I must’ve learned and remembered the tricks, because this time all went smoothly.

Next on the punch list was putting the second modified carburetor back on the driver’s side. I know that I’ve removed and installed enough carbs by now that I could probably do it in the dark if I had to. With the carb in place, the fuel line hooked back up and the choke linkage reattached, I fired up the engine. It idled fairly well, so I left it to warm up while I put all the tools away. About 10 minutes later, both choke butterflies were fully open, I so hooked up my clear tubing with the oil in it and adjusted the idle speed screws until the oil was steady. Surprisingly the throttle linkage for the driver’s side didn’t require any adjustment – just slid into its mating hole.

Still left on the punch list are replacing the push rod tube o-rings, welding the valance patches on, installing the front spoiler, adjusting the brake pedal rod, and bolting in the passenger side harness. Gonna’ be a busy weekend when you add in I still need to deal with Ringo’s brakes first thing tomorrow morning.

Today I drove Lucy to work and there’s still a hint of bogging at high rpm with wide open throttle. Doesn’t make me happy, but the car is drivable. I’ll take the carb that I pulled off with me to the track on Monday just in case. It goes without saying that I’ll be toting enough tools to do the swap trackside if necessary.

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