1951 Buick Special Deluxe - 04

First week of September 2013 - fuel/vacuum pump restoration

Pulled off the fuel/vacuum pump. These bolts were really tough to get at. Had to buy a set of crows-foot wrenches for this. From posting photos on the forum, was told this pump was not originally intended for this engine (it was intended for the larger engine in the 70-series Roadmaster), but nobody can definitely say that this pump wasn't installed from the factory like this. And the configuration of the lines does not look like it was re-bent (still had original line-to-line clips, which reportedly are never still with the car). So maybe this one was just built with a Roadie pump.

Fuel pump pad on the lower forward right side of the engine.

As removed.

Sent fuel pump to Now & Then Automotive in Mass. Spent more time in transit to/from than it did there. They make their own parts which are compatible with unleaded fuel. The vacuum side of the pump has a clever mechanism such that it only engages to provide vacuum when needed. Otherwise, it's disengaged. The vacuum line is only used in this car to drive the wiper motor. Vacuum is also used in the carb to engage/disengage the various fuel metering functions.

While the pump was away, I pulled the thermostat housings off the front of the engine.

Thermostat parts as removed.

Thermostat parts after soaking for a couple of days in white vinegar. I was told to follow this process with a day or two soak in water with soda to counteract the acid, which supposedly seeps deep into the castings. Result? The parts rusted back. So my experience is that I won't be using the vinegar/soda method. Someone else recommended media blasting.

Also in early/mid September:

Pulled the oil filter housing off the engine and gave it a more extensive cleaning.

Early October 2013:

Pulled the coolant hoses, the defroster plenum, and the defroster heater core. This helped me figure out something else later...

This is how the hoses were configured at the defroster inlet (right side of firewall).

From the manual and photos of other cars, this is how the hoses are supposed to run. The way my car was set up, it was flowing the heater core backwards and used a little bit more length of hose than stock. The "U" turn hose I see implemented as simply bending straight hose in most cars, though the manual calls out a molded "U" shaped part for that location. I have found this molded U part at one of the Buick restoration specialists.

15 September - Polished some more bolts on the Scotchbrite wheel.

3rd week September - Engine overview:

Pulling the battery tray off the frame. Bolt with wrench on it has a nut on the bottom side. The other 3 go into threaded holes in the frame. I got to the nut and the wrench handle on the bolt from below.

Right side of engine with battery tray out.

Water pump off.

Radiator out. Showing the air-guide pan in front of the radiator was trimmed on this car to clear the incorrect truck radiator that was installed. Plan to correct this.

Generator removed and water pump elbow off.

Front of engine with accessories removed. It turns over easily.