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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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2007/3/14 16:01
From New Jersey
Posts: 16129
Ken, a vacuum leak would result in air bleeding into the air/fuel stream downstream of the carburetor; thus that air would not have passed thru the carburetor venturi and would not have picked up any fuel. Thus the net result of the leak would be a lean mixture. So I'd conclude that if fixing your vacuum leak coincided with solving your rich mixture problem, that was purely coincidental.

Posted on: 7/13 5:50:14
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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From Viola, ID (but living in Norfolk, VA)
Posts: 827
Quote:

Owen_Dyneto wrote:
Ken, a vacuum leak would result in air bleeding into the air/fuel stream downstream of the carburetor; thus that air would not have passed thru the carburetor venturi and would not have picked up any fuel. Thus the net result of the leak would be a lean mixture. So I'd conclude that if fixing your vacuum leak coincided with solving your rich mixture problem, that was purely coincidental.


Dave, that was my thought too, but I didn't change anything else! It doesn't make sense to me. Before I worked on the manifolds, the manifold heat riser valve was wired open, and I had a pretty bad exhaust leak from the hot box joint. I also discovered evidence of two other leaks when I took the manifolds off, due to non-parallel surfaces.

In that condition, the car ran rich. Some black smoke after fully warmed up, but much less than when the heat riser was not wired open.

When I replaced the intake manifold, I had all the mating surfaces planed back to square. I also put the old plate back in my heat riser valve, because it had more of a curve and seemed to seal up tighter in the manifold. With those two changes, and no others, the car went from running rich, to running very lean. No other changes - most of my projects this spring were electrical and chassis related.

Any thoughts on why the change? I'm stumped, so just starting from square one on the tuning side.

Posted on: 7/13 6:25:15
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1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
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Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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From Viola, ID (but living in Norfolk, VA)
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Today's topic - troubleshooting!

Ok, I've been working on this car, unfortunately somewhat haphazardly, since I bought it in 2015. I've made a lot of progress in the last year in sorting a lot of things, but confess to now being a bit stumped. Apologize in advance for a very long post, but I wanted to lay everything out and try to get some insights.

Timeline:

2015-2019 Rebuilt heat riser, sent carb out for professional rebuild, new plugs, new solid core wires made from Brillman wire, gapped points, changed oil, tuned with vacuum gauge, checked mechanical fuel pump pressure (3.75 psi), repaired leaking gas tank and re-sealed, verified static timing, and verified condenser capacitance.

Jul 2019 After all of the above work, I still had a very rich running condition; clouds of black smoke. Car started very well, hot or cold, but it seemed to have slight ping accelerating under load (i.e. going up a hill). It would also heat up when accelerating under load.

I wired the heat riser valve open, and it seemed to solve most of my running rich problems. The car was running slightly hot at this point, and still had an exhuast leak from the manifold hot box due to a stripped out bolt hole.

A few weeks later, I flushed the cooling system with oxalic acid, backflushed it with a homemade air/water gun, and installed a new thermostat. In this condition, running slightly rich, it ran nice and cool - gauge reading just under 180 driving and idling in 90 degree plus weather. Very uniform temperature.

I also did a compression test in July 2019, with uniform results of 130-132 psi. Happy with the uniformity, but obviously too high (spec with my head is 118 psi). I put a quart of diesel in the tank during my next fill up to try and clean out the carbon I assumed was in the cylinders from a few hundred miles of VERY rich running while I owned it.

I should also point out that since I replaced and tuned the carb, it starts instantly, hot or cold. It has always idled a bit rough, and been louder, than my 115c.

22 May 2020 Installed new intake manifold. Both intake and exhaust manifolds were planed true. I also put the curved plate for the manifold heater riser back in the exhaust manifold, as the new one I had installed was straighter and would bind. These actions solved all rich running issues, and I had no black smoke or foul odor once the engine was up to temperature.

25 May 2020 Noticed the car running slightly warmer than usual, but not overheating. Still not running rich. I did not think to inspect the plugs for a lean condition.

5 June 2020 Adjusted valves. Valvetrain noise got a bit quieter, but still seemed excessive. Car still seemed to idle roughly.

1 July 2020 Filled up the gas tank, added 6oz of Marvel Mystery Oil along with the gas (still trying to clean out carbon from previous rich running). Drove the car about 50 miles a few days later, and it overheated badly. Stopped to add water to the radiator and let the car cool off a few times, but based on location, forced to drive a few miles with the gauge reading 210-212.

7 July 2020 Removed thermostat to verify it hadn't failed, wasn't sticking, etc. Drove the car in that condition with no changes - still got very hot.

Since that time, I inspected all the plugs (white/grayish white except #1 which was grayish brown) and verified spark plug wire resistance (varied from 0.2 to 1.5 ohm). I've changed out the points for NOS, will install a new cap and rotor before running the engine again, and did dry compression and cylinder leak down tests. Compression tests were done with the choke and throttle valves open.

Data

Cyl -Comp - Leakdown %
1 118 11% (rings)
2 119 70% (rings)
3 120 11% (rings)
4 120 18% (rings)
5 118 10% (rings)
6 116 65% (rings)
7 110 30% (rings/head gasket)
8 105 31% (rings/head gasket)

I assessed leak down cause by inspecting oil breather, oil fill tube, radiator neck, carb throat, and exhaust.

On 7 and 8, I could feel air coming out of the adjacent hole, hence my assessment of head gasket.

I'm going to re-check cylinders 2 and 6 this evening - I'm wondering if I had a leak in my rig on those two cylinders, because I don't see how I can have that much leakdown and still make good compression on those holes.

It is apparent that my next step is replacing the head gasket. Based on all this data, anything else I should do to troubleshoot before further dis-assembly? Maybe wet-leakdown checks, especially if cylinders 2 and 6 remain so bad?

I'm stumped - it doesn't make sense to me that fixing exhaust leaks, and maybe a small vacuum leak, would cause this drastic of a change in the engine.

I'm trying to find someone with a distributor machine in my area to check out the specs on the distributor as well. If I can't find anyone, I'll at least get a vacuum pump so I can inspect the vacuum advance.

Sorry again for such a long post, and thanks in advance for any help! Happy to hear any and all ideas! I want to balance a nickel on the head of this engine while it is running some day!

Posted on: 7/29 12:03:43
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1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
Amelia Island, FL
Saratoga Springs, NY
Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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Posts: 827
Update: got #2 to 9% leak down, and #6 to 11%. I found that by slightly adjusting the piston position (1-2 flywheel teeth before or after TDC), I was able to get to spec. On #2, with the flywheel advanced 2 teeth after where TDC should be, as I was cutting in air, the outlet gauge was holding steady at 25 psi until the inlet gauge was about 75 psi, then it jumped and ultimately settled out to 9% leak down (100 psi in, 91 psi out).

On reflection, a couple of other cylinders sort of lagged and then shot up as well. Could this be a sign of a worn timing chain? Bent valve stems? Loose valve guides?

Posted on: 7/29 19:52:43
_________________
1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
Amelia Island, FL
Saratoga Springs, NY
Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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2008/3/21 18:20
Posts: 2258
At TDC on the compression stroke neither of the valves is even close to beginning to open; they are down and the valve clearance is present. Moving the crank a few degrees is not going to affect them.

At TDC the top piston ring IS in the most worn portion of the cylinder bore and if a bit weak or broken will not seal well.


How many miles does this thing have? Remember that in the old days cars on used car lots had the odometer set back as a rule rather than the exception. I have observed that cars with weak rings often run hot as more of the combustion gasses flash down past the piston rather than doing work and thus dropping in temperature. Its that thermodynamics thing.

My second observation is that slack timing chains retard the cam timing and that seems to have a large effect on the straight eights.

Sadly neither cause explains your sudden overheating incident--that is usually a blown head gasket or a lot of rust flakes breaking loose and migrating to block off radiator tubes.

Posted on: 7/30 5:32:50
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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From Viola, ID (but living in Norfolk, VA)
Posts: 827
Ross, thanks!

The car has 53k miles showing on the odometer. I am supposedly the fourth owner, but I have precisely zero documentation. The window sticker from 1953 and a service sticker in the door frame showing a service at 48k in November 1952 seem to agree with the stated history.

The engine was supposedly rebuilt somewhere from 2005 to 2010. Again, no documentation. The front clip has clearly been off relatively recently- the engine was painted, starter and generator painted, forward frame painted, etc. Based on compression, I had assumed the engine was good.

Suppose all this issues is just due to a head gasket? It did blow between 7 and 8.

Im inclined to pull the front clip, send the radiator out for inspection, check the water distribution tube, and check the timing chain while I do the head gasket.

Am I being crazy and going overboard?

Edit: I think Im just going to start with the head gasket.

Posted on: 7/30 5:51:26
_________________
1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
Amelia Island, FL
Saratoga Springs, NY
Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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Posts: 827
Its been a productive few days. Took the head off, and none of the studs snapped, so that's a win. A few observations:

- A ton of carbon. As expected, but I wonder if this could explain some of my issues.

- No CLEAR indication that the head gasket was bad, but #8 had a few indications of water incursion. Either way, with as dirty as everything was, I thought it was a good idea.

- All the valves looked good. All the seating surfaces are smooth, no cracks that I could see, all the springs are the same height, no cracks, etc. Got them all cleaned up and ready to go back in.

- Head cleaned off. Everything looks good; surprised at a few deep scratches and one gouge that appear to be casting defects.

- For an engine that was supposedly rebuilt, it sure seems like cross hatching isn't very good on the cylinder walls.

- The piston on cylinder #5 seems especially gunky.

Now I have to clean the block, hone the valves, chase the studs, and re-assemble.

Any other recommendations while I'm in there? Any tips for cleaning off the top of the pistons? I just use a wire brush and a scotch brite pad on a die grinder for everything else, but I'm worried the pistons might be too soft. Also, any tips for cleaning out the carbon around the intake valves? Its very thick and gunky- I'll probably see if I can find a very small wire wheel to put on my die grinder, but I was hoping someone had a better idea!

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Posted on: 8/6 7:55:24
_________________
1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
Amelia Island, FL
Saratoga Springs, NY
Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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Posts: 5428
Check the head for straightness. How much carbon build up is in the ports? We used a bench grinder with a wire wheel to clean the carbon off of valves. It looks like an excessive amount of carbon build up, what do you suppose the cause is?

Posted on: 8/6 9:24:33
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
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Posts: 2258
Stunned by the amount of gook on the valve. How do they fit in their guides? Look at the wear pattern in the cylinders to get an idea if all the top rings are present and working. In the one photo of the cylinders, what am I seeing at the top of #8?

Posted on: 8/6 9:52:05
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Re: Ken's 1937 120 Touring Sedan
Home away from home
Joined:
2010/8/18 5:19
From Viola, ID (but living in Norfolk, VA)
Posts: 827
Quote:

JW wrote:
Check the head for straightness. How much carbon build up is in the ports? We used a bench grinder with a wire wheel to clean the carbon off of valves. It looks like an excessive amount of carbon build up, what do you suppose the cause is?


Quote:

Ross wrote:
Stunned by the amount of gook on the valve. How do they fit in their guides? Look at the wear pattern in the cylinders to get an idea if all the top rings are present and working. In the one photo of the cylinders, what am I seeing at the top of #8?


Thanks for the help guys! I didn't include the picture because I thought it was boring, but cleaned all the valves off this morning on my bench grinder wire wheel - they all cleaned up great!

There is quite a bit of carbon in the intake ports. I'll post a picture tonight when I get home. The car was running very rich; I'm assuming that is what the carbon buildup is from. Initially I think it was a combination of worn carb, mal-adjusted heat riser, and who knows? After rebuilding the carb, repairing the heat riser (twice), and getting the manifolds resurfaced and sealed up, it stopped running rich.

Ross - I was also stunned by the amount of gook. It had been running poorly for about 300 miles over 3-4 years - heavy clouds of black smoke, etc, but I wasn't expecting it to look like that!

I'll check the guides tonight.

Not sure what you're seeing on #8 - it had some spotting and corrosion just below the carbon ridge. I assumed it was from water incursion from the bad head gasket.

Oh - I have a ridge reamer. Is it worth reaming the ridges in the top of each cylinder?

Posted on: 8/6 10:52:37
_________________
1937 120 1092 - Original survivor for driving and continued preservation.

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=16514&forum=10

1937 115 1082 - Total basket case, partially restored (Sold Hershey 2015)

http://packardinfo.com/xoops/html/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?topic_id=6550&viewmode=flat&order=ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0


Past Packard storage locations:
Amelia Island, FL
Saratoga Springs, NY
Viola, ID
Groton, CT
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