The joys of classic car ownership

Cúchulainn

Asshole 7
Apr 11, 2008
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Oh, boy, where do I start?

Things started going wrong in December. I think they're all connected. I'd step on the gas, and it felt like a gremlin behind my firewall was grabbing my throttle linkage and yanking it away from my foot. Yeah, the car would basically floor the gas by herself.

So after troubleshooting the shit out of the carb and the choke, (as in completely rebuilt the carb, installed a new exhaust manifold heat transfer doojigger, and adjusted the hell out of the choke), we realized it was a bad motor mount. Under acceleration, the mount would give under the torque on the trans and the motor would lift up and crank about six inches to the right, pulling all the linkage tight.

This is also after I ate a curb because of this.

So I rebuilt virtually the entire front end. Idler arm (bent), control arm ("Waffled!"), strut rod (sheared the fuck off), and tie rod (twisted around the center link and idler arm).

So with the front end steering stuff rebuilt, and the motor mount replaced, everything seemed good for a while. Then the motor started running like shit.

It felt like it was either a bad fuel pump or a clogged fuel filter. In the hopes that it was the filter, I went ahead and replaced it.

...Or tried to.

It was a simple job - unclip the fuel hose, unscrew the fuel filter from the carburetor, screw the new fuel filter in place, attach the fuel hose and I'm done, right? HAHA. Funny story 'bout that...

Wrenching the brass fuel filter in, I ran into a problem. Brass shears off real easy. I broke the end off in the threads. So I ended up unbolting the carb and trying to drill the fucker out. Didn't work. Ended up finally getting a set of left-handed drill bits and backed the fucker out the right way. Fun times. Replaced the carb gasket, installed another new filter (without breaking it), bolted the carb up, hooked up all the vacuum lines, started the motor, and SURPRISE! The fuel hose was ruptured and merrily spraying fuel all over my engine block. Finally got that mess cleaned up and the hose replaced, so now I'm back to wondering why the engine's running like shit. Maybe its the pump after all.

I got an offer for her the other day - guy wanted to give me $7500 for her. In cash. So far, I would've broken even with that. But I love this old Montego too much to give her up. So I'm gonna keep merrily replacing and troubleshooting everything on her until she's perfect. And run her into the ground and do it all again.

I can't think of a better way to spend money.
 

Unhappy Camper

Hells yeah
Founder
Mar 10, 2008
5,012
25
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Fayettenam Area, NC
Oh, boy, where do I start?.
I've owned a few "classics" over the years.

When I was younger I was correspondingly less able to afford things and this carried over to my transportation.

This led me to purchase older cars that had seen the glory days long gone by.

I love older cars, the actual ability to take a part off and replace it with a part that I modified MYSELF has great appeal to me. With newer cars ( Post 2005) one is less able to mod a vehicle unless they have an extensive collection of shop tools and a VAST understanding of automotive engineering.

You appear to be driving your car on a daily basis, from my personal experience the joy of owning a 'classic' is reduced when one has to tinker and fix before the next morning's rush hour. The ability to put the vehicle to the side and lazily rebuild with out the need of using the vehicle removes all stress. It did for me anyway ..

The Kaiser that I bough in July of 09 still sits in my back yard and I long to work on it but am not compelled to do so because it never NEEDS to be driven.

I dunno .. good luck anyway !~!
 

semj_gandel

Dude!
Jul 30, 2009
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i own a 1971 chevrolet c-10 pickup that's in the same boat as you i have lots of problems but little $ to fix em im doing so slowly
if you tell me the make model and year i should be able to find some restoration parts company's (i enjoy looking for old parts online)
 

Cúchulainn

Asshole 7
Apr 11, 2008
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i own a 1971 chevrolet c-10 pickup that's in the same boat as you i have lots of problems but little $ to fix em im doing so slowly
if you tell me the make model and year i should be able to find some restoration parts company's (i enjoy looking for old parts online)
Mine's a 1968 Mercury Montego MX with the 302 2V. Money's not really too much of an issue at the moment, its just finding stuff. That's the difficult part.

I can see what you mean, Cranium, about having to fix shit quick, fast and in a hurry before rush hour - that shit SUCKS. But once I get things put back to rights, there's nothing like hearing that 302 fire up, knowing that I'm the reason she's back on the road.
 

Cúchulainn

Asshole 7
Apr 11, 2008
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If you can find a parts site I haven't tapped already, I'll be impressed as hell. I think I've already searched every single one when I was looking for my center link - until I decided to actually unbolt it and eyeball it. I had assumed that when I wrapped the tie rod around the center link and bent the idler arm, the center link was a goner, too. I was getting to the point where I figured that if I just straightened it, maybe it'd be okay... Yeah, it was untouched. Not like I'm complaining, though. This time I'm glad that assuming did indeed make an ass out of me.

The Montego is Mercury's mechanical clone of the Ford Torino. Virtually every mechanical part (chassis, frame, motor, transmission, so on and so forth) is interchangeable between the two vehicles as of 1968. Haven't really tried 1969 and I'm rather hesitant to - in my search for a motor mount, I tried the motor mount for the 1971 Mercury Montego and they had changed the mount by then - no telling what else they changed. But the Ford Torino and Mercury Montego are mechanically identical - the big differences between the two are the sheet metal on the body and the interior options - Mercury was always the upscale Ford; they were trying to make Mercury the baby Lincoln.

At this point in time, the 302 motor in there only has 80,029 miles on it. And its running great after I swapped the fuel filter. I can't see any reason to fuck with the motor at this stage of the game, but when I do, I've got plans for this baby. I'd love to pull the 302 and rebuild it into a 302 Boss clone. In the meantime, while I'm rebuilding the 302, I want to drop a 428 Cobra Jet engine in there with a four-speed tranny and see what that does.

...And I thought she was a gas-guzzler now...
 

Kill_em_All

Family
Founder
Jul 29, 2008
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This is kind of the reason I've given up on my 71 Challenger. Granted, there are a multitude of parts, both stock reproductions and aftermarket, out there for it, but the collectiblity of that year/make/model of Dodge is through the fucking roof and the parts catalogs know it, so they're charging 3x's what they used to.

I've focused on my Camaro since about January and have been just simply pouring money and time into it. I know, I know, it doesn't have the same appeal of a classic, and I respect that, but I have what is ultimately a show car of an equal caliber as a classic, for about a third of the cost. Not to mention I'm upwards of 600 horse and could easily destroy most vehicles on the road that cost sixteen times as much as what I have invested.

It's a different animal, though, because I'm not using the Camaro as a daily, and I'm pretty sure you use your Merc as one. With the internet being the best source for reproduction parts, I would imagine that there is an entire community devoted specifically to that vehicle and finding aftermarket bolt-on's shouldn't be too tough considering you basically have -for all intents and purposes- a Ford Torino, which you know is a pretty common car in the collectors market.

For me, I've had ZERO problems finding whatever I need for the Camaro, and can usually find six or seven sellers with competitive pricing. I've pieced together a fucking screaming demon for a little under 15k, which if I wanted the same results on my Challenger, would have cost me upwards of 80 or 90k. I'm sold on never buying a collector or classic car again given that scenario.
 

Kill_em_All

Family
Founder
Jul 29, 2008
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...And I thought she was a gas-guzzler now...
Eat shit. Try bolting on a 15 pound wet nitrous bottle and with the addition of a supercharger paying for 91 octane at about 3.25 a gallon while getting about 6 miles per gallon.

Humvee's loaded with troops get better mileage and that's after a Stage 2 weight reduction.
 

semj_gandel

Dude!
Jul 30, 2009
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kansas
yea i know that pain kill i get 8 in the city and my truck is so messed up right now lol
im not seeing any thing i cant find anything but bullshit websites for it youll probably just have to go with the clone parts ill keep looking but it seems that no big companys are gona have the parts im prob gona call year one and see what they say
 

Cúchulainn

Asshole 7
Apr 11, 2008
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Eat shit. Try bolting on a 15 pound wet nitrous bottle and with the addition of a supercharger paying for 91 octane at about 3.25 a gallon while getting about 6 miles per gallon.

Humvee's loaded with troops get better mileage and that's after a Stage 2 weight reduction.
Nah, I'm not going to make her all stupid at this point in time and I've seen way too many blown engines due to nitrous usage to even fuck with that shit. But when I get that Boss clone built from the original block, I might go with a supercharger. I work with a guy that has a 1967 Ford Mustang pushing 1500 horses to the wheel - 302 punched out to 306, dual supers and a whole fuck-ton of other modifications under the hood. That's entirely too much shit for me, thank you very much. And its not even street-legal. That kind of makes everything that car was built for a moot point, you know? Can't drive it around or anything...

And believe it or not, I actually have a pretty hard time finding Torino parts, too.
 

Gravy

Trunk Monkey
Jul 1, 2008
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Sydney, Australia
Sounds like someone needs one of these:



Just put one into a GT Falcon on Friday. Mind you, it was only a replica. Hence the rubbish carby^
 

KommieKat

Mao's Pet Cat
Founder
Mar 2, 2008
3,497
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Hong Kong, hiding from the Kommies!
I could imagine, once upon a time, pouring money into ones fossil fuel driven love affairs but I cannot imagine doing that today with the soon to be emergence of mass owned and operated alternative driven vehicles. Seems like a waste of money and time to me.

Who says you can't enjoy the fast lane with something sun or electric powered? Anybody seen the movies THX1138 or A.I. with Will Smith?
 

Cúchulainn

Asshole 7
Apr 11, 2008
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Mine's a Motorcraft carb and its still in pretty good shape. No real reason to do anything to it, its fine the way it is. I might go to a 4-barrel sometime in the future, but not today.


I just like old cars, especially the 1968 Mercury Montego MX. And so long as I'm alive, there will be at least one '68 Montego in road-worthy condition come Hell or high gas prices. Hell with alternative vehicles.
 

Gravy

Trunk Monkey
Jul 1, 2008
504
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Sydney, Australia
I could imagine, once upon a time, pouring money into ones fossil fuel driven love affairs but I cannot imagine doing that today with the soon to be emergence of mass owned and operated alternative driven vehicles. Seems like a waste of money and time to me.

Who says you can't enjoy the fast lane with something sun or electric powered? Anybody seen the movies THX1138 or A.I. with Will Smith?
I take it you didn't realise that every new Toyota Prius and a large number of Honda's have just been recalled worldwide for serious safety faults.

I'll stick to the tried and tested gas-guzzlers for as long as they exist!