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Post Info TOPIC: Breakdown! Stranded Seeking mechanic in Thunder Bay for 63 Laurentian


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Breakdown! Stranded Seeking mechanic in Thunder Bay for 63 Laurentian


seventy2plus2 wrote:

Roy, you still with us?
I did a little more digging, as I was earlier a bit concerned about the generation of your 6 cylinder engine.

Earlier engines were called Blue Flame 6's, and had displacements of 216, 235 & 261 cubic inches. The used an external oil filter.

Blue Flames were replaced in 1963 by Turbo Thrift 6's, with displacements of 194, 230, 250 (in 1966) and 292, they had an oil filter kind of beneath the distributor. GM used that platform for many years, well into the 80's. I was concerned of you trying to put parts from one generation engine on to another. The HEI distributor you got from a 71 Ventura should work, even though it is from a later engine as HEI's didn't come out until the mid 70's.

So, back to how your ignition timing is being set.
- Get someone with a timing light and hopefully a tachometer to give you a hand,
- Disconnect the vacuum line as it goes into the distributor, plug the line from the engine so there is no vacuum leak (a golf tee is often the best for this). No need to plug the distributor end,
- Set the parking break,
- Start the engine,
- If manual transmission, put the transmission in neutral. If automatic, put the transmission in gear so the engine is under load,
- Adjust your ignition timing (by turning the distributor) & idle speed screw accordingly to achieve initial ignition timing of something like 6 degrees Before Top Dead Center (BTDC) at something like 600 rpm.


 

Ignition timing. The tech at Canadian tire who installed the HEI distributor (from an old Ventura) to my knowledge did not use a timing light. He did it by ear. When I drove around the block and went back, he nudged the distributor a bit and adjusted the idle and sent me on my way. 

I went to a former shop mechanic who works out of his garage now (and bracket races a 55 Chevy/427 set up). His trailer with his timing light was out at the track. He turned the dist to what he thought was about 20 degrees and the car sounded much better. We reconnected the vacuum lines and went for a spin. I had considerable more power! He asked me to floor it as he wanted to listen for any pinging. No pinging. We stopped and he advanced the distributor some more. Car ran great! He fine-tuned the idle and timing as best he could, and we went for another spin to test it on a hill. The car responded wonderfully.

I drove 1200 kms over the next two days and the car ran quite well. Near the end of the day yesterday, I started to lose a bit of power on the hills or at the bottom end of 2 and 3rd gear. Maybe vapour lock?

I arrived at my brother's place and will search around for a timing light. I'll try these step-by-step instructions. I don't have a tach, but I'll look for a meter (that I can run off the coil?), and maybe I can get this running even better.

I still have about 500 kms to go before I reach my final destination. The fact I was losing a bit of power over the final two hours has me a little concerned.

Thanks for all this super great help!

 

 PS: The Chevy 250 came from a 1966 Chev pickup. The original 230 was seized when the PO found the car.

I changed out the plugs before I left Montreal. I was surprised to see the old ones were gapped at around.35. My research said it should have been .45 for the Pretronix/EI. So I set the gap on the new plugs to .45.

I'm guessing the 71 Ventura had a distributor changed out at some point in its repair life.

 



-- Edited by roycross on Saturday 9th of July 2022 10:03:22 AM



-- Edited by roycross on Saturday 9th of July 2022 10:13:06 AM

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Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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Well with any luck you've learned a lot on this journey. That'd include preparedness, mechanical knowledge, and the goodwill of your fellow man.



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70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 



Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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What ever happened to the electrical problems of the motor running after the key was turned off? Or the intermittent switch & relay combination to power the electric fuel pump?

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70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 



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Yes. It was an inspiring journey.

Learned all of the above. Having all the tools and no parts is pretty useless. Last summer I drove out from Saskatchewan to Montreal. Only needed to monitor tire pressure and oil. I naively thought the return trip would be as easy. So, yes, a box in the trunk with a starter, a coil, a distributor, an alternator, voltage regulator, a carb, fuel pump, maybe plugs and wires is a must. Plus my timing light. I had horribly underestimated how challenging parts were to find.

Financially, it was a costly trip. But I met some incredibly generous people and saw first-hand people's desire to help. I think it is easy to get caught up in a world where one feels one can do so many things alone. My call for help was an opportunity for people who are naturally predisposed to helping, an opportunity to respond. There is sometimes a sense that the world is cold and people are isolated, and insulated from one another. That one is only focused on themselves in a neoliberal way. But community is important, be it car culture or any other type of commonality, can bring people closer. And beyond a common interest, there is simple, genuine humanity. People's ability to empathize is still present.

So, I'll be more prepared next time. But the experience was humbling, inspiring, revelatory, and moved me to tears a few times. It was a great experience!

Thank you so much for all the help, everyone! Truly touched. Truly grateful.

Roy



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A Poncho Legend!

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I've loved reading your logbook. (Can't say I loved all the struggles) The way you persevered and always managed to find help was pretty cool. You are right, there is still a lot of good in this world, there are still a lot of good people out there who love to help and I think our old car hobby has an exceptionally high number of those type of people. I was sorry I couldn't meet you as you passed through our area but Covid invaded our home last Tuesday and was pretty defiant. So what is the plan now for the car? Do you have some alterations to make on it, or are you leaving it as is and will deal with issues as they come along? Certainly you must have the worst of the bugs removed to have covered that many miles with the car.

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1966 Strato Chief 2 door, 427 4 speed, 45,000 original miles 



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Roy, it appears I'm a little late to the party. Interesting read. If you intend to come back down the No.1, I'm in Regina. Feel free to PM in advance.

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Eric - Regina, SK

The Projects:

1935 Chev 3 Window Std Coupe

1957 Chev 2dr 

1967 Mustang Convertible

1969 Firebird 350HO Convertible

1969 Camaro X11-V8

1969 2+2 was a 396

1969 2+2 427

1980 Harley FXWG

1986 CJ7 Jeep

 



Canadian Poncho Superstar!

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Posts: 6799
Date:

What ever happened to the electrical problems of the motor running after the key was turned off? Or the intermittent switch & relay combination to power the electric fuel pump?

__________________
70 2+2 convertible
70 2+2 hardtop
70 Parisienne hardtop
72 GMC Sierra

 

 



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seventy2plus2 wrote:

What ever happened to the electrical problems of the motor running after the key was turned off? Or the intermittent switch & relay combination to power the electric fuel pump?


 It was the ignition switch. It will have to be replaced. and the intermittent switch to the electric fuel pump is the result of a poorly manufacture switch.



-- Edited by roycross on Thursday 14th of July 2022 10:32:00 PM

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Hi Everyone,

After all those wonderful adventures, I am selling my Laurentian. It's a bit complicated, but essentially I can't register the car in Saskatchewan in my name because I am a Quebec resident. I thought owning a house out here in SK would qualify me to register a car, but that is not the case. The car is currently registered in Saskatchewan in my brother's name, and borrowing it long term is not a viable option.

Here is my kijiji ad: www.kijiji.ca/v-classic-cars/swift-current/1963-pontiac-laurentian-original-paint-and-interior/1625171051

I'll see what I can find in Quebec this fall or next spring. My very first car was a 1964 Parisienne, two-door with a 283. This Laurentian was a great reminder of that '64.

I'll miss it, but be happy to see it go to a new owner.

Roy


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