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Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#1
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JeromeSolberg
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Hi Folks,

I am making a lot of progress, the engine on my 1953 is back together, primed and painted (I used a foam brush and did the best I could given the lack of a proper shop, painted it upside down, will paint the head later, used the Bill Hirsch Packard Grey, seems like great stuff but takes a long time to cure), just awaiting the final plunge of mating the engine and (also primed and painted, though I only have a picture of it primed) transmission.

I have been working on the wiring and other ancillary items. I had some frayed wires going into the heater motor, and took that apart only to find the nuts on the backside of the heater motor fell out, and it seems the only way to get those back on is to separate the impeller from the shaft, but I have not been able to figure out how to do that. I may take it to the guys who rebuilt my starter and generator and see if they can figure it out.

I also had a very rusty heater control valve, so I took that off (also took off the heater box, which wasn't so bad after I read the instructions on this site, the heater core itself is in really good shape, no leaks, flows water with no problem, looks like it had been replaced before). After spraying with some PB Blaster I freed up the mechanism and verified that if I closed the valve it sealed. But looking at the pictures on this site (Big Kev's instruction sheet, for example), I don't see any coil of copper tubing -it seems like maybe that has been removed from my heater valve? Or I have a different style, though I cannot figure out how the valve would actually ever be closed. I see a couple of valves with/ and without the copper tubing on different sites for sale, but Max Merritt, for example, only lists one. Perhaps in my case the heater valve was always just on, maybe that was done by the previous owner to help with the cooling.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Jerome

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Posted on: 5/23 17:21
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#2
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HH56
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If your blower wheel is anywhere close to being as tight on the shaft as my AC wheel was you will have a project to get it off. You cannot use anything to pry or pull behind the wheel because the sheet metal is too flimsy and the wheel will bend. Maybe your starter place will have a proper puller but if not here is what I did.

I wound up buying a split collar to fit the hub diameter. https://www.mcmaster.com/split-shaft-collars/ I got as close to the hub diameter as I could and still have the clamp be able to show a small gap when it was tightly clamped together. Used a small 3 jaw gear puller under the collar but even then found the hub so tight the collar would slide off. Finally wound up drilling and tapping a hole in the middle of each of the collar halves and threaded in a pointed end set screw which would bottom into two slight depressions I drilled into the hub. That did the trick and a wheel puller could then pull it from the shaft via the hub side.

The heater valve does need some kind of capillary tube as that is what senses temp and provides the pressure to work the mechanism. First valves had a long tube with a sensing bulb on the end but for 1951 on the valves had the tube coiled up in about a 1" wide and long coil and mounted to the side of the housing where it would be in airflow provided by a small opening in the side of the plenum box.

Posted on: 5/23 18:49
Howard
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#3
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JeromeSolberg
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Well, the auto/marine electric shop is looking into my heater motor. Hoping they can fix it.

I cleaned up my heater valve by soaking it all day in Evapo-Rust, and it cleaned up pretty nice. I could move everything by hand. But I put it in a pan of hot water and tried the lever in the position with least spring pressure applied, and the valve didn't move. Seems like the brass temperature-expansion disc is toast. So now trying to figure out what to do next. Also noted that the rubber seal was in bad shape and it would probably be leaking any day now if I put it back in.

The other thing I did (bad) was trying to free up the heater control cables, two of them broke, up at the control lever attachment point. Has anyone ever been able to replace those without taking out the dash? I saw this source for them on an earlier post, but I have to figure out what the lengths are first, I guess.

Bowden Heater Control Cables from NAPA

Finally, the one wire that I know I have to replace in the dash is the wire to the backup lights. Wow that is way up there, maybe I will be able to reach that without taking out the dash.

Posted on: 5/24 22:49
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#4
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Ozstatman
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Posted on: 5/24 23:30
Mal
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====

Bowral, Southern Highlands of NSW, Australia
"Out of chaos comes order" - Nietzsche.

1938 Eight Touring Sedan - SOLD

1941 One-Twenty Club Coupe - SOLD

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1950 Eight Touring Sedan - SOLD

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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#5
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JeromeSolberg
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Thanks! I'm working on it...

Posted on: 5/25 0:53
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#6
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Fish'n Jim
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If the thermostat bulb element is "toast", there's no replacements. You have to find a "good" one and have it changed. I had to do this for the Cad.
For the most part they aren't made to take apart, but people have learned to.
The guy that repairs them is Tucker's,
www.heatercontrolvalve.com
and as far as I know he's the last. He and a son do this and Jim's up there in age - older than I. He uses the telephone. I sent two in to get one back.
Usually, if the seal is gone, they leak and don't shut off. There are some universal electric ones out there that can be used, but getting to fit is trial and error and 6V complicates life. Manual valve on a cable is another option. Some just by-pass. Everyone goes through this as a period owner/restorer if they want heat.

Posted on: 5/25 8:35
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#7
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JeromeSolberg
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Good news: Buchannan Auto Electric (Oakland, CA) said they can repair the heater motor.

I took my valve apart and verified that the little copper expansion disc is not responding to temperature, probably it has a leak. Also I noticed it had what looked like a clip to seal off where the capillary tube was. It may be a project for me to fix over time, from what I understand it wasn't filled with any fluid, just sealed. From what Danchuk says, in 1955-56 Chevy replaced the capillary tube with a clip, maybe this is the same clip.

Danchuck replacement 1955-56 Ranco Heater Control Valve

I also found a valve from Packard Seattle, will see how that one works, and good to compare with whatever I can do to repair mine over time.

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Posted on: 5/25 12:24
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#8
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HH56
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If the Chevy valve will fit our opening and screw holes line up with the mounting brackets so the clip or tube gets positioned to sample the temp of the air coming out of the plenum box that is a darn good price. Not sure I would even mess with the old one anymore. In spite of all your work it may still not function anyway. The longer input tube might be a visual issue but since the hose for that tube comes from the head I doubt it would cause a problem because of any sharp bends.

On your earlier comment on the cables. They can be easily changed without too much effort except you fitting under the dash. There is a screw which bites onto the outer housing and a loop which fits over a pin on the lever. The loop is retained by a clip. Remove the clip, pull the loop off the pin and loosen the screw. The cable assy will slide back so the wire can fit thru a sort of slot in the space where the circle and screw holding the cable becomes part of the lever assy.

Here is the 54-6 assembly. 51-3 is similar except there are two cables on each side so two clamps and two pins on the levers. The screws holding the cable housing are pointing downward so you can get a screwdriver on them and are not really visible in this photo.

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Posted on: 5/25 12:47
Howard
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Re: Questions: Heater Control Valve, Blower Motor, 1953 Cavalier (also progress update)
#9
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JeromeSolberg
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Thanks! I was able to get the entire assembly out, just 2 screws (getting it back in might be a problem . Ordered some cable from Aircraft Spruce and Supply, looks like all the other options are not really available any more. Will have to make my own coiled-up ends.

Posted on: 5/26 14:03
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