"Eliminating An Engine Vibration"

        We are now driving and enjoying our '36 Rumble Seat Coupe. The 9 main-bearing Straight 8 is known for its smoothness, but ours has had a vibration when the engine was revved up above an idle. All engine mounts were checked and were ok, except a side mount called an engine stabilizer on the passenger side back toward the transmission. We found one at Kanter Auto Products and replaced it. While this helped some, it didn't eliminate the problem. The timing was re-checked and was right on the money. Then we pulled the transmission cover to check the alignment of the flywheel and clutch assembly, which was also correct. The vibration could be felt even when the car was not in motion, so the drive line was not the problem. While we were considering this problem, the waterpump began leaking, so we removed it to put on a new gasket. That's when we discovered a bent blade on the fan. It had been hammered out and was fairly straight, but was out of balance enough to cause the vibration problem. With just a phone call to our old buddy Richard Hunt at Packard Friends, we had a good fan, and when we installed it, the engine was much smoother. As inexpensive solution to a big problem-sometimes it happens.

        Another addition to this engine, and one we are going to use on all of our engines of the '60's back, is a pre-luber. It top-lubricates the engine when it is started, eliminating dry starts. On these straight 8's, the valves tend to stick, and with the elimination of lead in our gasoline, can lead to valve noise and premature valve wear. When we installed one of these units, made by Ampco, our valve noise at startup was gone. It's a simple system, consisting of a glass jar filled with Marvel Mystery Oil, with a line from the jar to a "t" fitting on the carburetor (one line to the distributor and one to the Ampco jar). Upon starting the engine, the vacuum pulls the fluid and sprays it into the top of the engine. There are other ways to hook this up, but this is the way we found that eliminates any drilling into the carburetor base or making any other modifications. On V-8 engines, we use the same hook-up at the base of the carburetor so that both heads will receive equal lubrication. We like this system so much that we ordered 8 units. They are $35 each or $200 for a case of 8, available from VACO, Inc., 413-586-0978.

        Spring is here! Enjoy your cars! See you next month!