Monday, February 25, 2013

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

It wasn’t until Sunday afternoon rolled around that I could have some car-time. My first tasks was to get Lucy reliably on the road again. I’d been recharging her dead battery, so I checked the voltage and it was back up in the 14.6 range (good-to-go). I started her up, but she still wouldn’t idle nicely. I determined the idle circuit on the right carb was clogged, so I took her out on the streets, and once the engine was warmed up, made a bunch of first gear, floor it, let up fast on the throttle, and hope the vacuum sucks out the clog runs up and down the hill near the house. Finally, that cleared it out and the idle was back to its 650 rpm smooth self.

With that victory, it was time to turn my attention to Ringo. I was back to dealing with the fuel sender. I made some resistance measurements with the sender outside the tank. While they should have been 0 ohms at fully empty and 30 ohms at completely full, I was getting 5 and 35 respectively. I tried matching a gauge to those parameters, and got one that was close. I installed the sender with the new float and started pouring gas back into the tank. The needle didn’t move and neither did the resistance. I’m done with this game. I’m replacing the sender. Since I already smelled like gas, I decided to empty the two or so gallons that I’d just poured into the tank. I clamped off the rubber line and pulled the end of the hose off the tube. While holding it over a drain pan, I removed the vise-grips, but nothing came out the hose. I’d not poured enough gas into the tank to get the level above the highest point in the sender’s tube, so no siphon could be started. Irrr. I had to remove the retaining ring from the sender and have the gas gush into the drain pan through the larger opening.

Onto the last of the three projects for that car – the belt-eating pulleys. I found a smoother-looking idler replacement on the shelf, so I cleaned the light rust off the mating surfaces with scotch-brite and installed it first. Then I moved on to the fan pulley. There are four bolts holding that to the top cover bearing and while removing the last one, it slipped out of my hand and fell into the volume under the engine’s top cover. CRAP!!!! I tried fishing for it with a magnet, but came up empty. My choice at that point was to leave it with the hopes it won’t jump and damage the fan, or pull the top cover off which entails removing carbs, alternator, etc. I chose the former and then went hunting for a replacement bolt. After fruitlessly going through a couple containers of fasteners, I went to a late model engine sitting in the portable garage to cannibalize a bolt. When I found that the bolt was a different size than the one that had disappeared, I had verification of my ongoing fear, and that was I’d installed an early model fan on a late model engine. That resulted in a slight misalignment of the pulley grooves thus causing the belt-eating. Now I had no choice but to pull the cover and replace the fan with the right one. I decided to save that for another time since it was nearing dinner time.

Later last night, Ariel informed me that Glinda's speedometer wasn't working anymore. She'll be driving Lucy now until her car is back on the road.

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