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Old 03-12-2013, 05:38 PM   #1
Vin-tin
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Default not run in years-do's and don't's

I picked up a '29 tudor about 2 years ago. The guy said it was last run back around 1993. He had temporarily lost indoor warm storage for it and because of vandalism to the ignition system, and a winter-frozen cracked block and head, it had sat parked since then. Thankfully he found another dry place to store it but the damage was already done.

I pulled the head off and the cylinder walls look shiny and there is no ridge at the top. The pistons do have a little side-to-side movement. I put MMO and PB Blaster in each cylinder hoping to free-up the rings if they are stuck.
I already fixed the crack in the block using the advice from someone here on the Barn.
Besides the obvious of buying another head, gaskets, and fixing/cleaning/setting the ignition parts/timing, and checking fluid levels, what do i need to do to the engine before i try to fire it up? Should i pour oil down the distributor shaft hole? What about the generator system?
I'd like to just see if it will "sputter" on starting fluid before i pull the fuel system apart to clean it.
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:24 PM   #2
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

You didn't mention an oil change, I would Mayby even put a gallon of kerosene in and let it soak a little while. Drain and fill with oil. Oil down the dist. hole certinally won't hurt. Grease the water pump very little in the rear fitting (excess goes in to the cooling system). Turn through with crank to check for sticking valves before head goes back on. Put a battery in make sure no electrical issues (shorts) finish the ignition hook up and see if she will fire off.
It has been said a thousand times here but a local club is a great resource for advice, parts and help. Good luck and ask any thing you need to.
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Old 03-12-2013, 09:03 PM   #3
Chris in WNC
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

drop the oil pan and open up the valve chamber before you start it.

too many stories out there of bad things inside engines that sit unused for years.......
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Old 03-12-2013, 09:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

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drop the oil pan and open up the valve chamber before you start it.

too many stories out there of bad things inside engines that sit unused for years.......
Good advise. My pan was full of mice nests after 20 or 30 years.
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Old 03-13-2013, 03:51 PM   #5
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

I already did turn the engine over by hand. The valves seem to work fine. Actually the engine turns very smoothly. I'll soak with kerosene (is diesel ok) and follow with some clean used oil down the distributor hole and flush it out and drop the pan and side cover. Re-fill with fresh new oil. I don't expect to find anything major in there but it won't hurt to check.
Does the grease in the water pump keep it from leaking coolant?
I heard something about "polarizing" the generator. Is that a factor right now.

Phil- good advice. But car clubs aren't my thing. Besides, I consider you guys on here my "local club". There's more knowledge on here than at any car club, and i'm fortunate to live 35 minutes from a parts supplier. (Renninger's)

Hopefully within the next few weeks, i'll be ready to fire her up. The weather's getting warmer here and i'm getting spring fever.
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Old 03-13-2013, 06:50 PM   #6
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

"Does the grease in the water pump keep it from leaking coolant?
I heard something about "polarizing" the generator. Is that a factor right now. "

Yes, and yes.
The grease helps to seal the lead packing rings, as well as lubricate the shaft.
Just jump the 2 cutout terminals for 1 second to be sure the generator has magnetism.
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Old 03-13-2013, 07:02 PM   #7
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

I think you might have messed up already. Never turn an engine over by hand after it has sat for a extended period of time. You should drop the pan and removing the main caps to check to see if there's any rust on the crank first. If there's a spot of rust on the journals it will wipe out the bearings. On putting MM Oil and PB Blaster in Once it breaks loose make sure you drain it right away and add fresh oil plus poring in the cylinders. If you don't the engine will freeze up again and after you pound those piston out by hand. You'll have a devil of a time getting the rings off.

I would now drop the pan and look at your crank journals to see if there's any damage.
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Old 03-13-2013, 07:53 PM   #8
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

Thanks everyone for your help. I probably should mention that this car looks as though it might have had an older restoration done to it. So the engine might have seen a rebuild.
It not a rusty heap that was pulled from a farm after sitting for decades. The pistons aren't seized and I see no reason why they would seize as long as it has the proper lubrication and coolant.

I only turned it one or two revolutions, so I don't think I "already messed up."
I'm not totally unfamiliar with engines. It's just a model A engine is a little different than i'm used to working on.
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Old 03-13-2013, 08:43 PM   #9
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

If it turns over good start it. Change the oil with a non detergent oil. Make sure it's all oiled up real good. Don't put to much stuff in it that will loosen up a bunch of junk. Run it a bit and see how it does.
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Old 03-13-2013, 09:01 PM   #10
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

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Originally Posted by Vin-tin View Post
I already did turn the engine over by hand. The valves seem to work fine. Actually the engine turns very smoothly. I'll soak with kerosene (is diesel ok) and follow with some clean used oil down the distributor hole and flush it out and drop the pan and side cover. Re-fill with fresh new oil. I don't expect to find anything major in there but it won't hurt to check.
Does the grease in the water pump keep it from leaking coolant?
I heard something about "polarizing" the generator. Is that a factor right now.

Phil- good advice. But car clubs aren't my thing. Besides, I consider you guys on here my "local club". There's more knowledge on here than at any car club, and i'm fortunate to live 35 minutes from a parts supplier. (Renninger's)

Hopefully within the next few weeks, i'll be ready to fire her up. The weather's getting warmer here and i'm getting spring fever.

Sounds like you got it going your way--finish up and run her. Phil
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:33 AM   #11
dave in australia
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Default Re: not run in years-do's and don't's

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Originally Posted by Vin-tin View Post
I'll soak with kerosene (is diesel ok) and follow with some clean used oil down the distributor hole and flush it out and drop the pan and side cover.
Diesel is fine, won't hurt anything.
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