Spring maintenance

It has been a while since I posted anything.  The car has been running great so not much to report.  And I have a new project sucking up lots of my time.  But I did do spring maintenance today.  I have shown most of this before but I do have some new #0 grease for the steering box.

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This is a John Deere lubricant sold as “Corn Head Grease”.  As you might expect it is green and very, very slimy.  I cleaned out  my least favorite grease gun to hold this stuff.

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Here is the target.  I pumped in a ounce or two.  We will see how it looks.  I also did the following:

  • Changed oil
  • Replaced filter and cleaned filter canister
  • Lubed chassis
  • Adjusted brakes
  • Cleaned fuel sediment bowl
  • Cleaned battery and battery tray
  • Serviced battery
  • Rotated tires
  • Topped off tranny
  • Topped off diff
  • Cleaned points (did not gap them or check timing.  Ran out of time)
  • Flushed and filled cooling system.  I kinda screwed up here.  I calculated the antifreeze quantity based on the capacity in the service manual.  I forgot (again) that the heater is being bypassed.  So my planned 50-50 mix is more like 70-30.  Whups.

Spring maintenance 2015

Time for spring cleaning on the Studebaker.  I am a little behind this year but last weekend I finally got a chance to get some work done.  First step is to check the sediment bowl on the fuel pump.

Fuel pump

Fuel pump

There were a few bits of crap floating in the sediment bowl.  Not too bad.

Sediment bowl

Sediment bowl

The gas from the sediment bowl got recycled for cleaning the air filter.  The air filter is pretty unsophisticated.  It is just some copper wool with some engine oil on it to attract dirt. I cleaned it with gasoline, let it dry, then re-coated it with oil.

Air filter

Air filter

Time for an oil change.  Draining the oil from the pan is easy

Oil drain plug

Oil drain plug

But the filter is a pain.  I have a Fram partial-flow oil filter installed that uses a cartridge-style filter.

Fram oil filter canister

Fram oil filter canister

After unscrewing the lid the old filter pops out

Old oil cartridge

Old oil cartridge

Leaving behind 1/2 liter of old oil.

Oil left in filter can

Oil left in filter can

All the oil has to be sucked out.  Leaving this tasty treat.

Nice layer of sludge in the bottom of the filter can

Nice layer of sludge in the bottom of the filter can

After sacrificing a rag to the oil gods we have a nice clean filter can.

Oil filter can all cleaned up

Oil filter can all cleaned up

A new filter from NAPA (1006).  The filter just slides in then the can is filled with oil.  A new gasket for the lid is included with the filter.  5 quarts of oil later and the oil change is complete.

New filter cartridge

New filter cartridge

Next I topped off the battery with distilled water.

Battery cells are a little low

Battery cells are a little low

And greased the chassis.  There are grease fittings everywhere as well as oil holes, cups, and pads.I also adjusted all 4 brakes.

Front suspension grease fittings

Front suspension grease fittings

Then this happened.  Monsoon season shut down my fun for the day.  The car and I both got soaked.  Spark plugs and points will have to wait for another day.

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New tires

The tires on the car look great but they are 30 years old and rock-hard.  I was going to try and get another year or two out of them but I started to see cord though the rubber.  So I ordered new Coker Classic radials.  Wide white walls of course.  That and new tubes make these the most expensive tires I have ever bought.  I took them to Precision Alignment and Tire who as usual did a great job installing them.

Before and after shots:
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Timing Tweaks

I have been setting the timing to factory settings but it seemed to idle badly and sometimes it backfires into the exhaust a little on deceleration. I decided to advance the timing a little and see if that helps. I bumped the timing up about 3-5 degrees. After adjusting the idle mixture the car seems to pull stronger and run better with no sign of abnormal combustion. I might try to push it up a few more degrees and see what happens.