I’ve been invited to work on some new projects from a very good friend of mine. The first of the projects is a 1964 Mercury Comet 2-door hardtop with the original 289 V-8. One of the other projects is a 1959 Ford 1 Ton tow truck which is his version of Tow-mator (from the movie “Cars”) and we are going to be pulling the motor and putting in a rebuilt. The next vehicle he wants me to work on is a 1976 Chevrolet half-ton 2wheel drive pickup and this one all it needs is a and a new electric choke. Also, he has another 1959 Ford half-ton pickup he wants to do another engine swap on.
Then he has one CANNOT wait to have the most fun with, a 1968 Pontiac Firebird. This car is stripped down to a bare skeleton and needs full body work, paint, interior needs doing, all electrical from bumper to bumper and all hardware to help bring this car back to its glory days of coming off the assembly line to what it once was. The cousin to the Camaro and this is the one I’m so looking forward to doing this one out of all the cars that I’m working on with my buddy because this one will definitely put my skills to the test!
After my first look at these cars, I assessed that the 1964 Comet needed a lot of wires replaced under the hood. Starting with battery cables, spark plug wires, hood hinges, and battery tray. Then I also took a look at the condition at the coolant lines and looked in the distributor cap for any hairline cracks between contacts. Why I did this is because my buddy said he got this from the original owner and it sat for a long time in his back yard and after accessing the wires, it is best to look at the inside of the cap because that could be a possibility of hairline crack because you don’t want to have to run into this problem down the road.
It also gives me a chance to look at the contact points and to see its condition and it looked pretty good. No need to change it at this point. Just for our readers: I LOVE points ignition systems over electronic ignition systems! Doesn’t mean I can’t work on them.
My assessment on the 1976 Chevy pickup is that my buddy wants to use it as a tire hauling pickup for his business if his van goes down. So he had asked me to look at the truck and troubleshoot why it won’t continue idling on its own. So he showed me what he has to do to keep it idling. He starts it and he has to keep his foot on the gas pedal, I was watching the carburetor and I noticed the idle set screw was set really low and he mentioned there is the wire for the electric choke, you have to hold it just right to make it contact with the female contact in the choke. I noticed there is no connection inside the electric choke for it to connect to. Then he shut it off and I asked him, “What was the strange red wire from the back of the choke to the throttle linkage?” He said, “I don’t know but we better not take it off. The next question he asked me is, “Does this carburetor need rebuilding?” And I told him I didn’t think so, it ran to perfect to need a rebuild. I have rebuilt dozens of carburetors and this one doesn’t need it. So my assessment is it just needs the electric choke replaced and to find out what that weird red wire IS! Also it needs a new hood because its rust has started eating the metal of the hood on the passenger side which makes it very difficult to close the hood with just one person!
My assessment on the 1959 Ford Pickup truck is that it needs is a motor dropped in it which he has that has been refurbished. It’s ready to go, I can pick up with his engine hoist and drop in easily and it already has a transmission in the truck waiting for its engine. It shouldn’t take to long.
As I finish these projects we will post pictures and instructions on each one. Keep checking back and we’ll be posting pictures and updates on the 1968 Firebird!