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(1) 2 »

IT'S ALIVE
#1
Not too shy to talk
Not too shy to talk

Chiefdan
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I rescued this 1951 200 Deluxe touring sedan from a 27 year hibernation in October. It has just over 30K original miles on it and no rust anywhere. Thanks to all the advice I got on this forum it is now running and driveable. Just would like to make a few comments on what I have done so far:
The brakes were a mess anywhere the fluid sat for years so I replaced the lines, rubber hoses, master cylinder and wheel cylinders. Hardest part was removing the rear brake drums. Don't even start this project without the 3 legged puller that attaches to the wheel lugs and you hit with a (large) hammer.
Followed the procedure recommended for starting an engine after long-term storage with oil in the cylinders and turning over by hand for a few days. Got It running with a remote lawn mower gas tank with rubber line running into the carb.
Rebuilt the fuel pump with a kit from Now and Then auto parts. A video they have on UTube was very helpful.
Fuel tank had half an inch of crud on the bottom but was in excellent shape so I pressure washed it and then put a large chain inside and shook it around until it loosened all the remaining scale. A new fuel sending unit was in order so a 1957 Ford sedan unit was acquired and installed
Replacing the rear pinion seal was not exactly fun for a 77 year old guy laying on a creeper under the car. Getting the seal out was a bear but it is done and new fluid added.
Got all the gauges working, temperature needed a sending unit and the oil pressure light needed just a bulb. I noticed the other day that the battery cables were only 4 gauge so I ordered a set of 00 gauge from a seller on Ebay for $53 with shipping. The car starts fine but the starter kicks out of engagement occasionally so I am hoping the correct battery cables will help.
Now that I got the car running and stopping I took it for a drive down the road a few hundred yards and back. Left a huge cloud of smoke when I took off but I think this will improve when I am able to get it out on the highway. Steers much better than I expected with no power steering and I don't think I have to worry much about spinning the rear wheels.
My next project is the seats. There is a long rip in the bottom of the front seat as well as just behind the driver. I did find the proper original material but it is $130 per yard! I found some really nice dark grey weave upholstery fabric at a local fabric store and it was $18 per yard. As this car is going to be a survivor/driver I could not justify the cost of the original wool. I found an old Singer straight stitch sewing maching on Facebook marketplace and am going to give it a go.
Sorry this is long-winded but it's January in Western New York so I have time. Thanks to all the guys who posted on this forum on how to trouble shoot problems and how to fix others. Dan

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Posted on: 1/13 13:47
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#2
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BigKev
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My' 54 smoked horribly when I revived it. It had stuck rings from sitting for 20+ years.

I put in a quart of Lucas oil stabilizer and drove it for 100 miles (round trip) on the interstate.

Problem solved. She still smokes a little when cold, on acceleration from a stop. But that's it.

Before, it looked like I had a smoke screen feature on the car!



Posted on: 1/13 13:57
-BigKev


1954 Packard Clipper Deluxe Touring Sedan -> Registry | Project Blog

1937 Packard 115-C Convertible Coupe -> Registry | Project Blog
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#3
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Packard Don
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Dan, Not long winded at all and very enjoyable reading. Glad to see another survivor getting back on the road! I’m contemplating replacing the steel brake and fuel lines on my own 1951 as they are crusty on the outside so may be too thin to be safe.

Posted on: 1/13 14:00
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#4
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JeromeSolberg
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Wow great news!

Does this have power brakes? Did you rebuild the Treadlevac?

Does this have a manual or automatic?

Also can you tell us more about replacing the pinion seal? I have to do that sometime. I got started but was flummoxed by the amount of force needed to remove the U-joint, the C-clamps I had were pretty marginal. Also what did you do to re-set the bearing clearances, or did you just count turns?

Congratulations!

Posted on: 1/13 14:04
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#5
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kevinpackard
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Congrats on getting the car back on the road! Looks like a great survivor that will clean up nicely.

Like BigKev, my car smoked quite a bit when I first got it back on the road. Driving it consistently basically solved the problem. It will smoke a bit on startup if it's been sitting a long time, but once it's warmed up it does fine.

I'm in the same boat as you on the upholstery. Correct material is available for me from SMS, but it was $180/yard for mine....and that was 2 years ago, so who knows now.

-Kevin

Posted on: 1/13 14:12
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Re: IT
#6
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HH56
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Quote:
The car starts fine but the starter kicks out of engagement occasionally so I am hoping the correct battery cables will help.

Since it turns over and does start, new cables probably will not help much with the kickout as such but definitely will help in other hard starting situations such as a weak spark that could be the reason for an occasional misfire and the resulting kickout.

Regarding the kickout, sometimes engines would misfire or otherwise could be reluctant to fully start so the starters had the kickout issue you are dealing with because the brief almost start kicked the starter pinion out of mesh with the ring gear. Packard corrected that issue by going to a different Bendix in 52. As the article starting on page 35 of the linked counselor mentions, that Bendix was made retrofittable to your 51 and even earlier models but your car may or may not have had the change. If it was updated, there could be an issue with the locking pin in the Bendix but if it still has the original starter and Bendix you will either need to live with the issue or find the new Bendix or a later starter with the updated Bendix.

Posted on: 1/13 14:31
Howard
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Re: IT
#7
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Packard Don
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Quote:
Does this have power brakes? Did you rebuild the Treadlevac?


The car is a 1951 while Treadlevac was first used in 1952. They can be added to 1951 cars but I doubt many were done.

Quote:
Does this have a manual or automatic?


The script on the back fender says Ultramatic.

Posted on: 1/13 15:13
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#8
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humanpotatohybrid
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Very nice progress, sounds like it's going well!

Engine smoking:
First, there's still oil in the cylinders so that's gotta burn off. Second, as Kev was mentioning it's likely the rings still have a bit to go. Even if none are actually stuck, whatever rust that happened in the cylinders I'm sure would cause a less-than-perfect seal until you break in the engine again, so to speak.

Starting:
Contrary to popular assumption, these cars turn over pretty easily. I wouldn't be surprised if crappy battery cables would cause enough voltage drop to weaken the solenoid enough to cause that problem, while still letting the engine turn over. If the starter draws 500 amps you are looking at 1V of drop from the battery assuming a circuit length of 3½ ft. Some 00 cables would reduce this to only 0.3V.

Oh, and many of us are quite a fan of the non-power steering.

Posted on: 1/13 18:22
'55 400. Needs aesthetic parts put back on, and electrical system sorted.
'55 Clipper Deluxe. Engine is stuck-ish.
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Re: IT'S ALIVE
#9
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Wat_Tyler
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Congratulations!!!


You didn't mention it/them, but TIRES!!! You'll need to reskin it before going out of the neighborhood. Man, I ran some crap way back when. Never again!!!

Posted on: 1/13 19:15
If you're not having fun, maybe it's your own damned fault.
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Re: IT
#10
Not too shy to talk
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Chiefdan
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"Also can you tell us more about replacing the pinion seal? I have to do that sometime." Pinion seal on Ultramatic equipped 1951 Packard: First remove the lower drain plug on the rear axle and drain old fluid. Next there are two roughly U shaped clips inboard of the outer part of the U-joint. One leg is peened over so you straighten that little leg and pull the clip(s) out with a screwdriver. This lets the bearing caps come out and then the U-joint can be manipulated out and driveshaft dropped. Put a short 2x4 under the driveshaft at the frame X to keep it up out of the way.
Now the fun part. I used a sharp center punch to mark the pinion yoke, the nut and the shaft all in a row for use when re-installing. After trying various bars with extensions, I gave up and used a 1/2" impact at 120#. Still nothing. Tried penetrating oil and some heat from a propane torch on the nut. This seemed to do the trick and the nut loosened. I had already counted the threads showing (2) on the shaft but I also counted the turns to remove the nut. (9+). That is when it got fun. The seal is cone shaped to the outside so there is very little room to get anything between the shaft and the seal. I tried drilling and screws but couldn't move the seal at all. Finally out of desperation I cut the protruding part of the seal out with a small air rotary cut off tool. That gave me room to put a screwdriver with a bend at the tip between the seal and the bearing and pry the seal out.
By then I had had enough fun and cleaned up and quit for the day.
The next day, with a little blue RTV around the outside the new seal tapped in with no trouble. ( I soaked the seal in oil for several days first ). Oiled the pinion shaft and slid the yoke on so my marks lined up and it went into the same spline as before. Put the nut on and tightened it with the 1 1/4" socket as tight as possible with a breaker bar and went back to the impact for the final 1/4 turn. The impact ran out of steam at about where my marks on the nut and shaft were in line so that was it. My U clips were a little out of shape so I straightened them in the vice until they fit the U-joint bearing caps correctly. The bearing caps have a screwdriver slot on the outer cover and this slot has to be parallel to the way the clips tap in for the clips to follow their intended path. Put the drive shaft back in and tapped the clips in with a ball peen hammer and bent over the one leg that sticks out. Re-install the lower drain plug and refill with fluid thru upper plug hole. I used 85-90 lube. This took me two afternoons but I am sure I could do It much faster the second time but I am sincerely hoping there will be no next time. Best of luck with your project, I hope this amateur tutorial helps. Dan

Posted on: 1/13 19:25
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