AC recap and Carpet ends

I picked up this original ’66 style evaporator from Stephen Allen’s. A cleanup and some black and silver paint and it looks quite presentable. Hopefully it will work OK.

The AC pump, condenser, dryer, hose and fitting kit I purchased all used O ring type fittings. The old evaporator uses flare fittings. A local AC shop were able to supply adapters to fit. They also provided a number of other fittings to plumb the lines through the firewall. Once I had all the hoses measured I had the shop do the crimping. On hoses with angled fittings it was necessary to mark the fitting and the hose alignment before they were crimped so they went back on without the need to twist the hose. The hoses are fairly high so are pretty well hidden. The hose wrapped around the lower AC hose is one of two drain hoses that will be fed through the transmission hump to allow water coming from the evaporation process to drain to the outside.

Carpets installed fairly well. A bit lumpy in spots, but a lot of that is hidden under the seat. When they flatten out I’ll just trim a bit off the sides. This is an aftermarket kit. It needed some trimming on the sides, but went in quite well. I will purchase new rubber front mats and front door sill plates from to finish the job – my sill plates are corroded out and cracked.

Next it is time to grease and drop the car down on its wheels so I can set the toe. I had the tie rods off and changed the bellcrank so the toe alignment will be out of whack.

More carpet capers

Patches in, factory 1/2″ alignment holes welded over and seam seal applied.

All painted over with a generous coat of Proform Rock Guard – brushed on. This is a paintable covering so ends up hard.

Sound deadener applied.

This is the second time I have used this product and it has worked well for me. It’s available on Amazon.

It comes in rectangular sheets. each with a 1/16 backing of petroleum based sound absorbing material. The silver cover helps keep out engine and trans heat. These are the tools I used. The tool in front of the roller is a 1″ gasket punch. I used the hammer peen to press the coating into the groves of the floor pan. When that split the silver covering I patched with the silver aluminum tape.

The backing that came with the carpet kit didn’t cover everywhere so I used old backing I had laying around to complete the coverage. I stuck it down some with some tape I had on hand to keep it in place. I used the gasket punch here also for the seat mount and seat belt holes.

Carpets in place. I’ll wait for a few days to let them settle and then I”ll cut and fit the sill plates.

AC install and on to carpets.

AC condenser mounted with four custom brackets made to fit existing holes in the rad mounting frame.

AC hoses plumbed in. I left the dryer disconnected until it’s time to test and charge the system. Using the original Studebaker fan and crank pulleys and AC mounting bracket I was able to line up the new Sanden compressor(with an adapter plate) with the pulleys and the original belt tension wheel.

The engine bay looks a whole lot busier now. I have a disconnect on the positive side of the battery. Normally the disconnect is on the negative side, but I need the ground to power the radio memory. I have a bypass lead with a 2 amp fuse on the positive side to the radio.

I was able to fit a Studebaker thermostatic fan, but to do that I needed a modified fan spacer (cut down by 1/8″) to miss the compressor pulley and give enough space away from the rad at the bottom.

Running lights. I’m using two Studebaker AC3522 running lights (still available from Studebaker Intl). They take the usual 1141 bulbs. They will be behind the grille and if they are not bright enough I can always use more powerful LED replacements. The parking lights will also come on. I ran a line from my accessory power point to the parking/headlight switch so that now the parking/tail lamps will be lit while the engine is running without the switch being turned on.

New carpets originally for a ’63 wagonaire. We’ll have to see how well they fit.

Original black vinyl mats.

Scraping away previously applied undercoating & rust and repairing old patch work. I also welded up all the 1/2″ factory body alignment holes and filled the two 1-1/2″ holes with plastic plugs replacing the old push in chrome units.

Next – more on carpets.

Firing her up for the first time

The new battery I bought is a maintenance free NAPA unit – you can make out the eye just to the left of the positive terminal. I picked up some false battery caps from EBAY for Chrysler batteries. Thought it would be a nice ‘original’ look. I will include a Studebaker Battery decals in my next order to Studebaker Intl for the battery top and the warning label for the apron.

The electric fuel pump is about 4″ from the muffler and exhaust pipe so I decided to add some protection. This is header fiberglass insulation wrap. I covered the back end of the muffler and then on to the the tail pipe. I used stainless gear clamps to keep it all in place. This should stop any radiant heat getting to the pump and lines.

Engine ready for start up. I’m filling the trans at the same time. I’ve already put three quarts of oil in the trans. I’ve attached a filler funnel so I can quickly add oil after startup. I will add the oil at 1500 rpm and then raise the idle to 2000 rpm for the 20 minute break in.

Break in underway. Hard to see but the garage if full of smoke and fumes from the paint on the exhaust and engine. I have two garage style hoses leading the exhaust out of the garage but it is still enough to set off the fire alarms. Oil pressure remained at about 70 lbs. I thought it would drop, but I guess it didn’t get a chance to heat up the oil enough in the 20 minutes of so at 2000 rpm. It dropped to around 40 at idle. I’m using 10W40 oil and GM’s EOS. Water temp was on the high side as well. Difficult to get enough air through the 3 core rad at a standstill.

Three problems appeared from the break in. All easily fixable. I had to turn the distributor a little too far to the right and there is a danger of kinking the vacuum advance hose. I’ll rotate the wires to the right and move the distributor to the left. Second, I thought I had a good HD water pump, but it is rumbling so it will be replaced by a new unit. Thirdly, the starter bendix doesn’t want to return immediately. It spins on the ring gear a bit before retracting. I have a backup starter to install. Then I’ll check the bad unit to see what the problem is.

Next I’ll be changing the oil and hooking up the PS. Once that is OK I’ll go on to the AC and get everything in place for a charge of 134A.

Blog updates will be a little slower from now on, but I will post as I get stuff done over the winter to get on the road in the spring. It’s been off the road now for 2 years. Keen to get it on the road again – it is such a nice car to drive!

Getting close to startup

Final position of the two trans cooling lines. 5/16 oil cooler lines will just pass under the lower rad hose.

Delco distributor from a ’61 Lark V8 if I remember. That’s an Accell electronic ignition and I’m using the Accell matching coil. Took about 15 tries to get the distributor lined up so that #1 was in a good spot for the vacuum advance location and room to advance without the cap bumping into the PVC valve. If you are not familiar with the problem it’s a matter of getting the gear on the distributor in the right tooth of the cam gear and at the same time lining up the slot in the oil pump shaft.

Distributor wired in with PB and PVC hoses in place. Just need to install the new spark plug wires.

A temporary fan for engine startup. I plan to use an electric fan once the break in is done. This is necessary as a regular or flex fan will hit the Sanden compressor for the AC. Also, once the break in is done and I’m sure my wiring is OK I’ll wrap it all in dry PVC tape as was done at the factory. I’ll only run the alternator and leave the PS pump off for the break in.

Rad in and hooked up, trans cooling lines in place. Just need to do a few more things before it’s time to put the pudding to the test!

Two steps forward and one step back

For the second time the rad had to be removed. A lot easier to run the trans cooling lines. The transmission now sits an inch further back so the lines don’t reach as far forward, but since I’ll be running hoses from the line ends to the rad that’s not a problem. The little bit of green is the end of one of the trans lines. I will need to keep them as far away from the exhaust pipes as I can.

Getting fittings to attach to the end of the trans pipe to connect the line to a 5/16″ rubber hose was not easy. I tried a few of the parts stores but nothing was available. Normally you use special coupling lines of various lengths, but I decided this isn’t necessary.

I’m going to use regular 5/16″ oil cooler hose. So I removed the flared fittings and put bubbles on the end of the pipes using a double furl tool. I started the furling process and stopped during the first step as soon as the bubble appeared.

Both lines in place. I used a couple of steel hangers I had of different lengths to hold the lines in place. I used the lower engine mount stud for a mounting spot. They really should be mounted to the engine so that they aren’t flexed by the engine movement. I figure the pipes are long enough that the amount of movement should not effect the trans fittings.

Before locking the crank bolt I turned the engine to TDC on #1 cylinder. Time to install the distributor before I accidentally rotate the engine. I’m using a Delco distributor used on ’60-’61 Studebaker V8 engines. The internals here are a Mallory electronic unit. The Delco’s have longer bushings than the typical Prestolite/Autolites and so last much longer. Also it is a breeze setting the points if you still use them and you can get heavy duty points for these units.

Wiring & such #2

This is gonna be fun!

The start. I’m using small cable ties to keep the wires tight and to mark spots where the wire wrap needs to allow for some wires to lead off to various connections. Here the wires lead off to the solenoid, brake switch and the voltage regulator.

I”m leading the wires along the lower edge of the fender apron. I’ve drill holes in the apron and will use thicker cable ties to hold it in place once the wires are wrapped. I’ve also moved the horn relay off the apron to this spot below the battery.

Time to install the radiator support so I can run wires along its lower edge.

The leads for the parking and headlights needed to be extended since the wiring is now far lower. I’m running the wires along the inside edge of the rad support – holes drilled and cable ties.

Wires for the parking and headlights and the horn are long enough to fit as is. The Alternator wires need to be shortened and the extra wire for the AC compressor clutch will be tied off to be attached later.

Rad’s in place. Next will be checking fan clearance, rad hose install, etc.

Wiring and such

As an aside to wiring this PB vacuum hose will need to be replaced. It is 3/8″ gas line hose, but it’s way too soft. It just might collapse under vacuum when hot. I’ll go to the NAPA store and see if their hoses are bit firmer. same goes for the PCV hose at the back of the carb.

Starting on the wiring. There’s gonna be a few changes with the starter now on the left and a separate starter solenoid. Also, I’m going to try and neat up the wiring by moving the horn relay and voltage regulator. I also plan to run the headlight, horn and parking lamp wires under the rad instead of using the upper latch panel across and in front of the rad. Promises to be fun.

I’ve started wrapping the wires going to the windshield wiper motor and the coil. I’m using dry vinyl tape like it came from the factory.

To me there is nothing worse than wrapping using electrical tape. As soon as it heats up the adhesive turns to a sticky goop that is a real mess when you have to take it apart. In my last wiring job on my ’54 I cut long strips of electrical tape and took the adhesive off with Goo-be-gone. Worked fine but it was a bit of a chore. I finally tracked down vinyl tape without adhesive – dry vinyl tape – on Amazon. Not overly expensive. It is wider than electrical tape and the vinyl is thinner than what is used on electrical tape. I’ve only started using it and so far so good.

I’ve moved the voltage regulator down from the upper apron side and I’ve also test fitted a starter solenoid. Everything needs to be cleaned up and painted, but I wanted them in place to fit the wiring.

I’ve replaced the PB vacuum hose with some 3/8″ high pressure hydraulic hose I picked up from a fellow Stude man and I’ve replaced the PCV line with stiffer 3/8″ hose from NAPA.

Delays and trying to creep ahead

I’ve been having issues with my ’74 Dodge 360 motor. It doesn’t want to idle well at all no matter what I do. A friend suggested the timing chain might be worn. Sure enough when I did some measurements it was over double the acceptable limit of 3/16″. So now I’m doing that job which is slowing my work on our “66 JT project.

The choke tube was missing so I used another from a different carb. It took some bending and I also had to ream out the manifold end to fit over the heater tube. A piece of clear fuel line joins the heater tube to the carb air horn.

I bought a set of spark plug wire looms for the project. I earlier removed the tin cable holders from the tops of the valve covers for a cleaner look.

Here is one installed on the right side. Fortunately it clears the dipstick tube.

Another little job is hooking up the PCV valve with a short length of 3/8″ fuel line. The manifold opening will be used for the power brake vacuum hose. I need to get a nice neat 90 deg brass fitting for the job.

Time to unwrap the (dirty) wiring harness.

I will be trying to lower the wiring harness on the fender apron and otherwise neaten everything up some.

Moving ahead albeit slowly!

Heater hose recap and exhaust

I didn’t like the way the new CarQuest heater hose kinked with the slightest bend. So I whet to NAPA and checked out their brand. It’s wall thickness is 1/32″ greater and the OD is 1/16′ smaller. This is the new hose (bottom line) and it kept its shape through the clamp without trying to kink and collapse.

The top photo is the old hose with a kink starting, the second hose is the same hose with a gear clamp at the kink to force the hose into a round shape and the third photo is the NAPA hose with no kinking in the same location.

My band clamps arrived. I needed six to cover both sides. The size is 2″ on the small side and a bit over 2″ on the large side to slip over the joining pipe. I also have two 2″ regular clamps to fit over the end of the tail pipe and the rear hanger.

I noticed in the ad for the band clamps that metal sealing tape was used on the joints. Seemed like a good idea so I covered each joint that took a band clamp with aluminum duct tape.

I put the pipes and muffler together and then held up the muffler to the underside of the floor. The idea being that when all the clamps were in place and the jack removed the system would sag a minimum distance. That worked pretty good as the mufflers are barely visible from behind the car. With the system held up I installed the band clamps and hanger clamp. I rotated the clamps so the large screws were up out of sight. The tough part was tightening each clamp to 50 ft lbs. The sale ads specify that the clamps need to be tightened to between 40-60 ft lbs! That’s what it takes to make the joints immovable.

Exhaust in place-whew! Quite a job working with just jack stands. This is a complete original Studebaker system – except for the mufflers and the tail pipe extensions. 2″ pipes from the engine to the the tail pipe and 1-3/4″ tail pipes. I may up the tailpipes to 2″ sometime down the road. It seems that Hawks had the 2″ tail pipes.

Getting close to engine start up. Next is a bit of carb work, then the rad goes in and the wiring harness is re-installed. In the meantime I am changing the timing chain in my ’74 Dodge Adventurer SE truck so that will slow things down a bit.