The Gearhead Thread

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FredS
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Post by FredS »

I would have guessed the problem is in the charging system also. I'd check it with a multimeter even though the dash gauge reads 14V.

The thing about those jump starter battery packs is that they don't last all that long either. 4 or 5 years is the best I've ever got. I ditched them and went back to jumper cables.
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Post by sweetandsour »

FredS wrote: 24 Jul 2022, 17:16 I would have guessed the problem is in the charging system also. I'd check it with a multimeter even though the dash gauge reads 14V.

The thing about those jump starter battery packs is that they don't last all that long either. 4 or 5 years is the best I've ever got. I ditched them and went back to jumper cables.
It wasn't/isn't the charging system, per my multimeter. Thanks for the guidance on the jump starter pack, I intend to keep jumper cables also, and hope I never use them. In fact, I can't remember the last time I had to use any cables before last Thursday.
Anyway, all has been normal since Thursday, but I checked and re-tightened all connections this afternoon anyway.
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Post by michigander »

Corrosion between the battery terminals and battery cable can form over time and cause similar symptoms. However replacing the battery would have disturbed this and likely eliminated the problem.

I suppose it would be prudent to take a battery terminal brush to the inside of the cables (and while you're at it, hit the terminals on your new battery. )

Perhaps there's some corrosion still in there.
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Post by sweetandsour »

michigander wrote: 25 Jul 2022, 01:26 Corrosion between the battery terminals and battery cable can form over time and cause similar symptoms. However replacing the battery would have disturbed this and likely eliminated the problem.

I suppose it would be prudent to take a battery terminal brush to the inside of the cables (and while you're at it, hit the terminals on your new battery. )

Perhaps there's some corrosion still in there.
Ha! Thanks Michigander, I have several of those, including one that my brother in law gave me when I was in high school, ~1970. I'd post a pic if I could get the lid off of it. Anyway, yes, when I installed the new battery I was pretty sure I tightened everything up, but I was doing it in a parking lot and a little hurriedly, so my guess is that it just wasn't making a connection, suddenly, 2 days later. Otherwise maybe it was simply an act of God, and Philip and Ethiopian moment perhaps. If so then I sure hope I didn't miss anything, like a divine appointment or mission or something. But thanks again.
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Post by michigander »

sweetandsour wrote: 25 Jul 2022, 03:35
michigander wrote: 25 Jul 2022, 01:26 Corrosion between the battery terminals and battery cable can form over time and cause similar symptoms. However replacing the battery would have disturbed this and likely eliminated the problem.

I suppose it would be prudent to take a battery terminal brush to the inside of the cables (and while you're at it, hit the terminals on your new battery. )

Perhaps there's some corrosion still in there.
Ha! Thanks Michigander, I have several of those, including one that my brother in law gave me when I was in high school, ~1970. I'd post a pic if I could get the lid off of it. Anyway, yes, when I installed the new battery I was pretty sure I tightened everything up, but I was doing it in a parking lot and a little hurriedly, so my guess is that it just wasn't making a connection, suddenly, 2 days later. Otherwise maybe it was simply an act of God, and Philip and Ethiopian moment perhaps. If so then I sure hope I didn't miss anything, like a divine appointment or mission or something. But thanks again.
I hope I didn't insult your intelligence. Most people have no idea that those exist. Hopefully that will fix it. It sure seems strange that the problem would return so quickly after changing the battery, but if either of the terminals are cruded up inside I suppose it can happen.
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Post by Troubadour »

I honestly like doing DIY car repairs with the aid of a Hayne's manual. Plus there are often lots of generic-brand car parts available on retailers like Amazon.com for more reasonable prices than a mechanic would charge.
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Post by JimVH »

As a wannabe Jeep guy, this made me chuckle:

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Post by joegoat »

Working on getting a Gravely Commercial 10A back in action. I've already disassembled, cleaned, inspected, and reassembled the transmission. The Kohler K241 engine is torn down and ready to be rebuilt. Waiting on an ACR (automatic compression release) spring to come in the mail before that can happen.
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Post by Hovannes »

I just realized that while they still make the venerable old size air cooled VW bug/bus tires (165-15) nobody around here stocks them any more.
I used to be able to pick them up anywhere.
I posted this too soon!
I ordered four from Priority Tire
Americus brand made in Thailand
what reviews I found looked good.
the free shipping was the irresistible part---it brought the price down to about half of what mail ordering a set of Firestones would have cost.
We'll see!
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Post by Hovannes »

This seems appropriate:

Farewell, My Lovely!
By E. B. White

May 8, 1936
I see by the new Sears Roebuck catalogue that it is still possible to buy an axle for a 1909 Model T Ford, but I am not deceived. The great days have faded, the end is in sight. Only one page in the current catalogue is devoted to parts and accessories for the Model T; yet everyone remembers springtimes when the Ford gadget section was larger than men’s clothing, almost as large as household furnishings. The last Model T was built in 1927, and the car is fading from what scholars call the American scene—which is an understatement, because to a few million people who grew up with it, the old Ford practically was the American scene.

It was the miracle God had wrought. And it was patently the sort of thing that could only happen once. Mechanically uncanny, it was like nothing that had ever come to the world before. Flourishing industries rose and fell with it. As a vehicle, it was hard-working, commonplace, heroic; and it often seemed to transmit those qualities to the persons who rode in it. My own generation identifies it with Youth, with its gaudy, irretrievable excitements; before it fades into the mist, I would like to pay it the tribute of the sigh that is not a sob, and set down random entries in a shape somewhat less cumbersome than a Sears Roebuck catalogue.

The Model T was distinguished from all other makes of cars by the fact that its transmission was of a type known as planetary—which was half metaphysics, half sheer friction. Engineers accepted the word “planetary” in its epicyclic sense, but I was always conscious that it also meant “wandering,” “erratic.” Because of the peculiar nature of this planetary element, there was always, in Model T, a certain dull rapport between engine and wheels, and even when the car was in a state known as neutral, it trembled with a deep imperative and tended to inch forward. There was never a moment when the bands were not faintly egging the machine on. In this respect it was like a horse, rolling the bit on its tongue, and country people brought to it the same technique they used with draft animals.

Its most remarkable quality was its rate of acceleration. In its palmy days the Model T could take off faster than anything on the road. The reason was simple. To get under way, you simply hooked the third finger of the right hand around a lever on the steering column, pulled down hard, and shoved your left foot forcibly against the low-speed pedal. These were simple, positive motions; the car responded by lunging forward with a roar. After a few seconds of this turmoil, you took your toe off the pedal, eased up a mite on the throttle, and the car, possessed of only two forward speeds, catapulted directly into high with a series of ugly jerks and was off on its glorious errand. The abruptness of this departure was never equalled in other cars of the period. The human leg was (and still is) incapable of letting in a clutch with anything like the forthright abandon that used to send Model T on its way. Letting in a clutch is a negative, hesitant motion, depending on delicate nervous control; pushing down the Ford pedal was a simple, country motion—an expansive act, which came as natural as kicking an old door to make it budge.

The driver of the old Model T was a man enthroned. The car, with top up, stood seven feet high. The driver sat on top of the gas tank, brooding it with his own body. When he wanted gasoline, he alighted, along with everything else in the front seat; the seat was pulled off, the metal cap unscrewed, and a wooden stick thrust down to sound the liquid in the well. There were always a couple of these sounding sticks kicking around in the ratty sub-cushion regions of a flivver. Refuelling was more of a social function then, because the driver had to unbend, whether he wanted to or not. Directly in front of the driver was the windshield—high, uncompromisingly erect. Nobody talked about air resistance, and the four cylinders pushed the car through the atmosphere with a simple disregard of physical law.

There was this about a Model T: the purchaser never regarded his purchase as a complete, finished product. When you bought a Ford, you figured you had a start—a vibrant, spirited framework to which could be screwed an almost limitless assortment of decorative and functional hardware. Driving away from the agency, hugging the new wheel between your knees, you were already full of creative worry. A Ford was born naked as a baby, and a flourishing industry grew up out of correcting its rare deficiencies and combatting its fascinating diseases. Those were the great days of lily-painting. I have been looking at some old Sears Roebuck catalogues, and they bring everything back so clear.

First you bought a Ruby Safety Reflector for the rear, so that your posterior would glow in another car’s brilliance. Then you invested thirty-nine cents in some radiator Moto Wings, a popular ornament which gave the Pegasus touch to the machine and did something godlike to the owner. For nine cents you bought a fan-belt guide to keep the belt from slipping off the pulley.

You bought a radiator compound to stop leaks. This was as much a part of everybody’s equipment as aspirin tablets are of a medicine cabinet. You bought special oil to prevent chattering, a clamp-on dash light, a patching outfit, a tool box which you bolted to the running board, a sun visor, a steering-column brace to keep the column rigid, and a set of emergency containers for gas, oil, and water—three thin, disc-like cans which reposed in a case on the running board during long, important journeys—red for gas, gray for water, green for oil. It was only a beginning. After the car was about a year old, steps were taken to check the alarming disintegration. (Model T was full of tumors, but they were benign.) A set of anti-rattlers (98c) was a popular panacea. You hooked them on to the gas and spark rods, to the brake pull rod, and to the steering-rod connections. Hood silencers, of black rubber, were applied to the fluttering hood. Shock-absorbers and snubbers gave “complete relaxation.” Some people bought rubber pedal pads, to fit over the standard metal pedals. (I didn’t like these, I remember.) Persons of a suspicious or pugnacious turn of mind bought a rear-view mirror; but most Model T owners weren’t worried by what was coming from behind because they would soon enough see it out in front. They rode in a state of cheerful catalepsy. Quite a large mutinous clique among Ford owners went over to a foot accelerator (you could buy one and screw it to the floor board), but there was a certain madness in these people, because the Model T, just as she stood, had a choice of three foot pedals to push, and there were plenty of moments when both feet were occupied in the routine performance of duty and when the only way to speed up the engine was with the hand throttle.

Gadget bred gadget. Owners not only bought ready-made gadgets, they invented gadgets to meet special needs. I myself drove my car directly from the agency to the blacksmith’s, and had the smith affix two enormous iron brackets to the port running board to support an army trunk.

People who owned closed models builded along different lines: they bought ball grip handles for opening doors, window anti-rattlers, and de-luxe flower vases of the cut-glass anti-splash type. People with delicate sensibilities garnished their car with a device called the Donna Lee Automobile Disseminator—a porous vase guaranteed, according to Sears, to fill the car with a “faint clean odor of lavender.” The gap between open cars and closed cars was not as great then as it is now: for $11.95, Sears Roebuck converted your touring car into a sedan and you went forth renewed. One agreeable quality of the old Fords was that they had no bumpers, and their fenders softened and wilted with the years and permitted driver to squeeze in and out of tight places.
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