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Current Page: 14 of 16
Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: cad-kid ()
Date: January 13, 2017 10:36AM

Excellent update!

Jeremy (cad-kid)
Kronenwetter, WI (Central Wisconsin)
CORSA Member#031129
SOLD-9-2016 65 Monza 4spd/140
My 65 Monza thread
My YouTube page yawning smiley

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: Pedigo ()
Date: January 13, 2017 11:01AM

SteveInMarietta Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> TP - will you be driving the Loadside to Ohio
> anytime soon? (We've got less snow!)
> Steve

I've actually included this idea on my bucket list.
I'd love to make this journey from Oregon (once I feel the Loadside is long-distance worthy) and finally get to meet you and your lovely wife.

Keep up the excellent work. You are an inspiration to the rest of us.

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: igottajob2 ()
Date: January 13, 2017 01:05PM

eye popping smileysmileys with beer Amazing!

Minneapolis,MN

1965 500 Coupe
95HP

Built the 1st week of April of 65 at willow run.
500 coupe. The only factory accessory is a rear antenna.
White with a red interior.
Now black with black and red interior.


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: January 23, 2017 06:56PM


The powertrain has a new lease on life!
What arrived looking like this with extensive internal damage has been resurrected from near oblivion by Ken Hand.

You may recall that essentially none of the internal moving parts of the engine nor the cylinders were salvageable. Three of the pistons had holes in them. But fortunately all of the major components that were coded and dated could be saved. This was important since the FireBrier was outfitted with a rare FC 102 HP engine and positraction differential that I wanted to save.

Here's a few pictures Ken provided.

The block had damage that needed to be repaired by aluminum welding; Here it is with the replacement crank and cam.

Cylinders, pistons and connecting rods all replaced.


The transmission was in the best condition; it needed a replacement shift rod and some other components.




In the positraction differential a damaged posttraction clutch housing needed to be replaced - provided by Jeff at the Corvar Ranch. Apparently this was a common problem.

So the powertrain is looking much better and has been rebuilt to last another 50 years, at least.







Reassemblying the rear crossmember and suspension is near the top of the to-do list (I've been procrastinating hoping some vintage rear shock absorbers appear), along with beginning to reinstall the cables in the undercarriage. But alas there is still some body work to be done down there, which is being delayed by the nasty weather out west -- I thought the Mamas and the Papas declared that it never rains in southern CA?

Steve

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: Pedigo ()
Date: January 23, 2017 07:03PM

Was everything blasted or flat grey paint?
Hard to find a clutch for your posi?
Looks clean,Steve.

Colton/Shady Cove,Oregon
'61 Loadside
'62 8-door Corvan

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: January 23, 2017 07:15PM

Everything was blasted. Transmission and Differential were then painted. The posi clutch cover was cracked, but we lucked out. Jeff was first person I went to - he not only had one, but had had it magnafluxed to confirm integrity. I guess I should pay him for it.
Steve

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: ROD ()
Date: January 23, 2017 07:27PM

Oh man Steve that looks sweet!

The fun part for me has always been engine assembly after everything is all cleaned up and painted. Corvair engines really have an impressive look to them when done right.

all of your hard careful work shows! Enjoy ! smileys with beer

Rod Tetrault
El Cajon , CA
65 Corsa Yenko Clone / 65 Corsa EO Creampuff Vert
66 Corsa "JIMISH" Mid engine Turbo LS1 currently 2nd fastest Corvair in the USA
Class 5 Corvair powered Baja
61 Vintage Rampy
Corvair powered Buggy x 3
Enough hidden parts to build a space ship

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: igottajob2 ()
Date: January 24, 2017 06:59AM

Looks amazing!!!! thumbs upsmileys with beer

Minneapolis,MN

1965 500 Coupe
95HP

Built the 1st week of April of 65 at willow run.
500 coupe. The only factory accessory is a rear antenna.
White with a red interior.
Now black with black and red interior.


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: February 08, 2017 09:40PM


As I await arrival from CA of replacement parts for the undercarriage, I've decided to start stripping the interior.


The interior rear panels were removed and the interior paint of the engine bay has been stripped. The metal was thoroughly washed free of stripper, cleaned with POR 15 degreaser using scouring pads and then metal prepped. I always metal prep not only to enhance binding of the epoxy primer, but also to prevent flash rusting until I do the priming.

But along the way, a number of repairs were needed before priming. One of these was to the battery compartment opening. Some fool had cut and yanked out the front edge of the opening, undoubtedly to fit a larger battery (#1).


Plan A was to cut out the bent section and weld in a replacement. But when my local body shop guy stopped by to look at the FC he will eventually be painting, he said that it would be better to metal work the bent region back into place. Sounded like a good idea to me, and after about 4 hours work it was back in place (#2) but still so warped and uneven that I decided it never could be made right. Apparently metal working this piece was beyond my skills, but it didn't help that this is about 18 gauge steel and it often was not possible to position a dolly where needed while hammering. OK, so back to plan "A", and the front edge was cut out and a replacement (from the Corvair Ranch) was welded in (#3), after grinding down the weld, the surface was smoothed and contoured with filler (#4).

That rear corner also also was the location of a significant dent.


Metal working this back into shape was more successful. Working with a variety of hammers and dollies, from the inside and the outside, the metal was carefully roughed back (#2). To begin the fine shaping work, I apply a skim coat of filler and sanded it down to find the high and low areas (#3). The metal is then repeatedly reworked while resanding the filler until the surface has been largely smoothed (#4), and my goal is to do the finish work with high build primer. I have applied a temporary primer to prevent rust until the exterior is refinished (#5), and I won't really know until then if I will need to use any filler to get the final contours right. Although I didn't get a picture, the inside was also made right, with a little filler, so that the metal work will not be apparent. I'm sure a pro could do this faster, but this little project took me about 5 hours!

Another task involved patching some holes. I probably should have done this before refinishing the underside, but I won't claim to always do everything in the most logical order. I remember a recent thread (I forget who posted) about the daunting task of doing an entire restoration, and looking ahead at all the work that is still needed. My solution is to often do something that I feel like doing at that particular time, even if it's not the most logical next step.

At any rate, there were about a dozen holes drilled through the metal over the powertrain and rear wheel wells, probably where fire equipment was once secured. I had considered leaving these holes, but then decided to fill them. I'll redrill as necessary when/if I can reacquire original fire equipment. The holes ranged in size from quarter to three-quarter inch diameter, and were resealed filler metal disks:


The metal around the holes was often quite distorted and needed to be work flat again (#1). A magnet covered with a thin sheet of aluminum was placed below the hole (#2) to hold the filler disk in place (#3), so that it could be welded in (#4). After grinding off the excess weld, some filler was used to smooth the surface. I also resanded the underside which will be repainted.

The next progress report will be on refinishing the load compartment floor, which suffered some serious surface rust (moisture under the rubber mat, undoubtedly) and pitting that will need to be addressed.

Steve

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: igottajob2 ()
Date: February 09, 2017 10:53AM

Simply amazing work Steve! smileys with beer

Minneapolis,MN

1965 500 Coupe
95HP

Built the 1st week of April of 65 at willow run.
500 coupe. The only factory accessory is a rear antenna.
White with a red interior.
Now black with black and red interior.


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: February 11, 2017 12:11AM


The extended length of FC rear shocks is 13½” , and 14¼“ seems appropriate for the fronts, unfortunately original FC spirals seem to be essentially pure unobtanium so I’ll have to make some substitutions. I have acquired NOS spiral shocks with appropriate dimensions for the Firebrier, and my intent is to match the extended length as best possible, recognizing that the valving may not be optimum.

I have NOS EM car spirals, and the fronts (3178178) have an extended length of 12 7/8” which is pretty close to the FC rear shock, so I’ll use these there, but with an extended length of only 12½” I suspect that the car rear shocks (3178179) are too short for the FC. I recently obtained two NOS 3197656 spirals which have an extended length of 14¼”, and I plant to use those in the front. The problem is that the bottom bracket has hole spacing of only 2½“ and the FC requires 2¾ “.



So I pressed out the original bottom brackets and replaced them with brackets from corvair shocks. This is not simple because when the brackets are pressed out, the rubber grommets come with them and are irreparably damaged. I needed to recast new grommets, which I did using 70 shore urethane rubber. This required setting up a jig so that I could cast the rubber around the brackets within the casing of the shocks.


Rubber seals were placed around one end of the bracket to prevent the rubber from leaking while it set up. I used a two-part 70 shore urethane rubber.


and additional rubber seals where added to the other end; these seals also molded the extended ends of the new grommets, as you can see in the shocks with the replacement bracket and grommet


I’ll be repainting the shocks to match the original GM shock gray, and the new grommets should be almost indistinguishable.


A couple of other rubber repair jobs…


The original style electrical harness retainers are not available – the originals have an unusual clip on the back that holds them in place. The rubber is often damaged or discolored, and it’s difficult to remove them without breaking that little clip. I’ve been saving good ones for a while to restore. On the undercarriage there are also some retainers that are spot welded, and the rubber on these is also often no good after 50 years. I removed all the rubber before repainting the undercarriage. And finally, the engine top shroud has two retainers for the spark plug wires, and the rubber on these needed to be removed before powder coating. The rubber on all of these retainers was restored using the same urethane rubber.



I had posted a thread recently looking for the FC cab floor cable/harness grommet which has the part number as 3787262. Clarks does not offer a repro, and I didn’t hear back from anyone who had a NOS one. So I decided to repop it myself.



If anyone needs one, I can make a few more. I only made one mold, so it take a while to make them. I’ll only ask a nominal fee to offset the cost of the materials and shipping.

Steve


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: March 07, 2017 07:10PM



Finally more progress, and the last of the body rot to the undercarriage has been repaired. The following pictures show an assortment of stages in the repair process. Some of the replacement parts were extracted from a good quality CA parts van by Mike Deklotz of Mike's Auto Parts, although some pieces needed to be fabricated.

The front right (passenger) side rocker panel and floor pan were in sad shape.


Like lots of rust-belt FCs, the dog-leg "ankle" was pretty well rotted, with serious rust extending down along the face of the rocker panel; and a good size chunk of the floor pan was also beyond salvage.


Here we see the rotted part of the "ankle" cut away (you can see the replacement floor pan set in place behind). That segment was replaced before the floor pan was replaced, and the right side picture shows the floor cut away. You'll also notice that even part of the sill needed to be replaced as well as section of the weatherstrip support frame.


Here's a view of the dog-leg "ankle" partially welded in place. And there's my, mother-of-all, big-ass C-clamp that has solved a variety of clamping needs. To the right is the restored floor panel, primed with an epoxy base and 2K surfacer. Epoxy primer should be top coated within 72 hour, but if I'm not going to apply the finish coat soon, I always cover the epoxy with surfacer to assure proper bonding later on.

Much the same situation on the other side of the cab, although the floor pan was in much better shape.

The right side picture shows the inside of the rocker panel painted with POR 15.

And here's the replacement piece spot welded in place, and then the weld lines after grinding and skimmed coated with filler.

Meanwhile on the other side of the wheel well, the jacking brace and associated sill were a disaster, but now are now fully restored.

Indeed, the undercarriage has now been fully stripped and repainted, and soon I will begin replacing the undercarriage control cables. But first I'll be priming the Firebrier interior.

Steve




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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: igottajob2 ()
Date: March 07, 2017 07:18PM

This thread is so impressive! Well done! smileys with beer

Minneapolis,MN

1965 500 Coupe
95HP

Built the 1st week of April of 65 at willow run.
500 coupe. The only factory accessory is a rear antenna.
White with a red interior.
Now black with black and red interior.


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: vwbusman66 ()
Date: March 07, 2017 07:43PM

This thread drives me to do a thorough job on my 63 dormobile.
It also reminds me that good things take time, and there is nothing wrong with doing resurrection in stages.

-------------
James Keller
Kingsville, MD (21087)
1966 Monza Convertible-- originally 110/3 speed now SMOG 110/3 speed

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: corventure Dave ()
Date: March 08, 2017 08:42AM

Absolutely fantastic! As mentioned before, love the craftsmanship.smileys with beer

Corventure Dave

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: March 12, 2017 06:47PM

Some pictures of the near unobtanium . . . the Firebrier’s newly restored 35 Amp LCI generator (Delco 1105135). Thanks to Ken Hand for acquiring the generator and doing a super restoration, and to Crawford Rose for providing helpful information about this type of generator.

Here's the generator before restoration and after being disassembled. There was some initial confusion because the tag appeared to be black, and Delco 12 Volt generators always had red tags. Turns out the tag had been painted along with the entire generator at some point.



And here it is restored.


Notice that this generator does not have a smaller commutator end like the stock generator. Instead it has a removable metal band that allows easy access to (and replacement of) the brushes.

The 35 Amp LCI generator was RPO K71 and intended for FCs that had a high current demand, such as ambulance and fire department conversion vehicles. Undoubtedly it was installed in the Firebrier to power the original Federal Signal 66G siren, which could easily otherwise drain the battery, particularly at low RPM, and possibly other equipment.

LCI stands for “Low Cut-In”. Generator cut-in is often defined as the speed at which the generator produces a voltage equal to that of the fully charged battery. The specifications show that the 5135 unit could produce 14 Volts (and 35 Amp) at 1730 RPM, versus 2230 RPM (and 30 Amp) for the stock generator. In order to produce higher current at lower RPM, a larger generator with more armature windings is needed, and this is well reflected in the substantial weight of the 5135.

Steve

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: vwbusman66 ()
Date: March 12, 2017 06:51PM

(incoherent mumbling followed by drooling on laptop)

-------------
James Keller
Kingsville, MD (21087)
1966 Monza Convertible-- originally 110/3 speed now SMOG 110/3 speed

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: igottajob2 ()
Date: March 13, 2017 06:56AM

smileys with beer

Minneapolis,MN

1965 500 Coupe
95HP

Built the 1st week of April of 65 at willow run.
500 coupe. The only factory accessory is a rear antenna.
White with a red interior.
Now black with black and red interior.


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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: kenzen ()
Date: March 13, 2017 04:26PM

Awesome work! thumbs up

kenzen
66 Monza Coupe 110/PG
Bel Air, MD

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Re: FC Fire Dept Truck Restoration
Posted by: SteveInMarietta ()
Date: March 15, 2017 05:09PM


After an initial false start, I have located an excellent match for the Fawn Poly interior color. As I had first posted in a separate thread, the Fawn Poly prepared at my local auto paint shop according to the original PPG 22151 color code did not match the interior color of the Firebrier.

So following Plan B, I brought in one of the rear interior panels to be color scanned. As explained to me, when auto paint is scanned the computer doesn't disassemble and identify the relative proportions of the individual color components (such as when latex paint is scanned at your local home improvement center), but instead looks for the best match from existing paint formulas. How good is the match must then be determined by mixing the paint and testing.

The computer matched GM 1963 Fawn Poly with Ford "Pueblo Gold, Light French Silk" (OEM COde: G3,M7113A, 4LLEWHA,4LLEXWA), an exterior color for a variety of ord vehicles in the last dozen years, or so.

Well, here's the paint applied to one of the rear doors - the new paint is on the right (in case you couldn't tell)

I find it to be a superb match, almost indistinguishable (mixed as Acrylic Enamel) from the original. Somewhat more glossy, but I didn't really try to polish up the original lacquer. So this is a winner.

Fawn Poly 22151 was used for 62 - 65 FCs, although I don't know how consistent were the GM colors from year to year. I painted some test cards, and if anyone is needing to paint an FC interior, I'll be happy to send you a card to see how well this will match.

Steve

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