"Punchin' Up A Dynaflow"

        Hope that you've had a good month!  We did here, with two main projects:  Continued work on our '36 Packard, and tweaking the transmission on our '58 Buick.  On the Packard, we decided that with the engine and the front end disassembled, we might as well touch up the nicks and chips in the paint.  As of now, we are repainting all the way back to and including the cowl.  The firewall was stripped and painted car color, and all new rubber and welting is ready to go on when we reassemble the parts.

        Of course, all engine parts were rebuilt, and we replaced hoses on the Bijur lubrication system.  Trouble was found in the radiator.  Even though the core had been replaced in recent history, it was stopped up from sitting.  It now has been rodded out by Chatt-Town Radiator (423-698-2389), and should now run cool.  There was about 60% blockage.

        The doors had strange emblems on them, probably put there by a previous owner for inserting his initials.  They had to go!  After removal, there were two holes left in each door.  These were inset with a punch to allow the weld from the "MIG" to be ground down even with the door surface.  This is a permanent repair, eliminating the possibility of filler falling out when the doors are closed.  Well, now we're painting part of the doors!  My wife is betting that we won't stop until we've painted the entire car!  We are using lacquer-based products, such as Claw Glaze and red oxide primer, because some of our touch-up will be done with lacquer.  The new two-part primers and fillers can be used under acrylic enamels, but not lacquer.

        Progress is being made on the engine.  The bearings are being made and their return is in sight!  The head is being resurfaced at Motorvation (706-539-9965) by Joe Rabelskie. After discovering signs of leakage between the cylinders on the head gasket, we knew resurfacing had to be done.  (New heads are available, but have to be made, with 6 month's minimum turnaround time at a price of about $1400).  This head was not cracked, but was warped.  To determine how much material had to be removed, the following measurements were made.

        On our head, the center thickness minus the outside thickness equaled 89 thousandths less than the center thickness, meaning that most of the surface had been removed from the end surfaces of the head (center was thicker than ends).  There are basically three types of resurfacing:  1.  Stone grinding, 2.  Carbide cutting, and 3.  Everything else (belt sanding, etc.), the latter being much less exacting, and can leave high or low placed, depending on where the pressure is applied in holding down the head while the material is being removed.  Our head was resurfaced using the stone grinding method, with calibrations of one-thousandths of an inch.

        Now, with the head resurfaced, the combustion chambers were smaller-not enough to cause any major problems, but I want this engine to be 100%.  So, I chose to check the cc volume of each chamber for uniformity.  The head is turned upside down and a glass plate with a hole is placed over each chamber.  Using a Burete tube, a thin fluid (Marvel Mystery Oil, transmission fluid, etc.) is filled into each chamber and a cc reading is taken on each.  Then, using a die-grinder with a cutting stone, material is removed until all chambers have the same cubic centimeter ("cc") capacity.  Ours were off an average of 6 cc's.  After this, each chamber is sanded and polished (same as porting and polishing).  When the head is back on the engine, each cylinder should have equal compression and the engine should tune out externally, because everything is correct internally.  Next month we hope to have the engine going back together.  We'll let you know the progress.

        Our '58 Buick is always fun to work on.  It is one of those cars that always starts, and when something breaks, it still "gets you home".  It's a red and white two-door Riviera with factory continental kit, 364 V8 and Dynaflow transmission.  I have always liked the smoothness of the Dynaflow, but like many others, I would like a little less slippage under acceleration.  I was discussing this with my friend and fellow restorer, Charles Butts, and he suggested increasing the long spring pressure in the high accumulator.  This sounded simple enough.

        To increase the power and decrease slippage in passing gear, we removed the original spring (long one) and replaced it with a 1982 Chevy 2.5 oil pump spring (available in Chevy oil pump rebuild kit).  The accumulator does not have to be taken off the car.  It is amazing how much this changes the performance-more a power-to-wheel feel, more direct drive in all ranges and passing gear.  And it still has the Dynaflow smoothness.  The springs are available at most parts stores and the accumulator rebuild  kit (less Chevy spring) is available through Buick Specialists (253-852-0584).  Well...that's all for now.  Got to drive the Buick!  See you at the shows-Keep 'em driving.