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Projects 40 Plymouth Sedan build

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by skiviskaves, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,309

    RodStRace
    Member

    Joined in the watch the fun!
    As said, get friendly with the tractor supply place, they will be your local "go to" place for all the mechanical bits.
    The ol' 6 V positive ground stuff NEEDS big cables and clean connections. Not glamourous, but if you feed it right, it will return the love.
    The poly is a sweet motor, but I'd seriously look at keeping the 6 and if the trans is shot, go with a 5 speed.
    Since the trans is questionable, please put the thing up on strong stands when trying to get 'er running. I'd hate to read that it runs, right into the wall!
    Brakes are a pain to get right. If you are swapping the fronts, look into swapping the rears too. You can swap in later bendix self-energizing on the ends, or if the trans IS shot, swap out the trans, driveshaft (ball and trunion) and rear axle for a much better, more reliable and servicable combo.
     
  2. chuxx
    Joined: Jul 15, 2007
    Posts: 208

    chuxx
    Member

    Very cool and original car. Love all the chrome and trim, that's hard to find these days. I like your plan, get it on the road, get the poly built, and when the time is right do the swap. Stick with a mopar tranny if you can. Good luck!
     
  3. powhatan42
    Joined: Apr 26, 2011
    Posts: 148

    powhatan42
    Member

    Good luck with the build, and PM me if you need any stock '40 plymouth parts, I'm working on one and have two. My build is different but aren't they all? I'll be following your build.
     
  4. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    I'll spare you the excuses of why I haven't touched the Plymouth in over a month. Last night I took some extra welder cable and ran another hot wire from the battery. The idea was to essentially double the cable size to ensure that the starter is getting enough juice. This double cable setup is only for trouble shooting purposes as I was convinced my slow turning starter wasn't cranking hard enough to start the car.
    The good news is the double cable worked and the starter turned much much much better, faster and more consistently. The bad news, still no start. I know I have spark. I have some doubts on fuel, but it should be there. For each start attempt I'll dump a little straight down the carb, in addition to a funnel/fuel line gravity feeding. The two center plugs are getting wet however I don't think the fuel is making it all the way to the extreme ends of the inliner. Potential problems that I'm toying with are:
    - the old carb gaskets are definitely dry and leaking fuel, maybe there just isn't enough fuel getting in.
    - the car hasn't been started in 25 years, maybe there is some blockage in the intake, mouse nest or something? But, the inside of the carb looked really clean when I started, so I am having trouble believing that there would be crap behind it.
    - timing is off. Today I'm going to look up the firing order and make sure the wires are right.
    - you tell me...
     
  5. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,997

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    Do a static timing excercise and bring#1 up to top dead center, then assure your rotor is indexed correctly (ie alligined with the dist tower you have the plug wire in) then assure your firing order is correct in relation to #1's actual position. The factory position is 7 oclock, but if the engine was apart or rebuilt the oil pump may not have been indexed exactly, so that positionmay have changed.

    Look at the cylinder head directly above #6 and you should see a standard pipe plug standing proud. Remove it and insert an 10 inch piece of stiff wire. It will ride up and down on the #6 piston indicating TDC as 1 and 6 are on them but opposit strokes.
    But it the timing cover marker is pointing to TDC then #1 should be at TDC on the compression stroke (6 would be at the top of the exhaust stroke)

    You can also pull 1 spark plug and bump the starter with your thumb over the hole and feel the compression build.

    When I reassembled mine after a rebuild I was 100% sure everything was correct but I had the wires one tower off and she would not start, would pop every now and again but no start.

    Where are you in Wisc? there are quite a few members of the Plymouth owners club in Wisc, perhaps eve one near you.

    If and when you get to engine trans swap check out this guys stuff for plymouth/dodge

    http://www.butchscoolstuff.com/

    also check out member olddaddy's brake conversion kit at

    www.rustyhope.com.

    and member mooses stuff at

    www.manifoldsbymoose.com
     
  6. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    Right on plym46, thanks for the advice. I'll be checking the timing tonight. I'm in Pewaukee WI (about 10 seconds off hwy SS I-94 exit)...if there are any Plymouth owners, or anyone for that matter who want to drop in and bring some wisdom to the situation that would be very welcome. I've got plenty of cold beverages!
     
  7. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,997

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    You might also want to check out the P15 D24 site and forum for lots of info. If not specific to your 40, very close and not may mechanical changes in the line mechanically through the early 50's

    http://www40.addr.com/~merc583/mopar/framesets/welcomeframeset.html

    then check out and register for that forum. Takes a day or so for reg to go through as there is only one admin.
     
  8. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,997

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    Check you PMs for a helpful neighbor, an experienced mopar owner and a Gold Wing enthusiast also.
     
  9. Gidday from Oz.......Polys are a neat engine but relatively hard to get HiPo parts for and they are expensive, also if you want to put a poly in it I'd go with a later version, say 63-66 as they have the alloy auto which is easier for parts......anyway have attached a couple of pics of my Oz 1940 Dodge which you can see is based on the Plymouth.......they did that sort of thing here in Oz, similar to what the Canadians have........I have had a the 318 Poly in my car since 1973, its a 1962 version with the cast iron Torqueflite, runs a Weiand single 4 intake & 600 Holley, also 4 wheel discs, rack & pinion etc etc........btw thats a neat car you have........regards, andyd
     

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  10. Just a silly question......but you do know the car is a positive ground system??

    And is the engine well grounded - lots of guys run an added ground strap from
    engine to body or frame.

    Lots of guys have been thru what you're doing with the old Mopars.....just keep at
    it and you'll eventually have it running. Nice car.
     
  11. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    andyd - cool car!

    47Plym - yup, I know that it has a positive ground. I just may have to try adding an extra engine ground for good measure. Thanks for the advice and encouragement.

    Life got in the way again last night and I didn't get to check the timing as I was planning to, I should have some extra time this weekend. While grilling dinner I did glance under the hood to verify the firing order (1-5-3-6-2-4) and it was correct.
     
  12. StayFrosty
    Joined: Apr 13, 2010
    Posts: 24

    StayFrosty
    Member
    from Wisconsin

    EDIT: Dang, I just realized I hadn't actually read all the way to the end of the thread :)

    I have picked up a few sets of wires for my mopar flatheads from Mills Fleet Farm (I think they should have some stores in SE WI.) I got the generic 6cyl plug wire set from the farm/tractor section. You cut them to the correct length, slide the boot over the wire and crimp the contact on. They have worked well for me.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2011
  13. OldSchoolSS
    Joined: Jan 3, 2008
    Posts: 144

    OldSchoolSS
    Member
    from WI

    Gents, I went over by Mister Skaves place last night to try and help him get the car to fire. Earlier this summer we got it to pop on one or two cylinders twice but that has been it.

    To me it still seems like it's spinning too slow. I don't have any experience with 6 volt systems. I've always had 12 volt or converted it to 12 volt right away.

    I don't think he's getting a hot enough spark. You can see it jump the gap on the plugs but when I put my spark tester on the engine I had to turn it down to about 1/8" to get spark to jump the gap. I'm going to have to dig out the instructions on it from my tool box but I think you should be able to jump a pretty big gap on it.

    We tried adding an extra ground from the cylinder head to the frame, but that didn't seem to help.

    Does anybody know if you can find the points and condenser at a local auto parts place or farm store or is it something that has to be ordered from a specialty house. I checked napa, advanced, and rock auto and didn't find anything.
     
  14. George
    Joined: Jan 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,286

    George
    Member

    throw a 12V battery in it & get er spinning!
     
  15. dart_451
    Joined: Jul 28, 2009
    Posts: 31

    dart_451
    Member

    wow thats nice,im doing a 41 with a poly, i just bought a 4v set up for it.only im puttin a dakota fr sub on mine and air bags. and im using the dash push button trans that came with my motor. nice to see some mopars on here. keep up the great work.
     
  16. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,997

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    You need to pull the distributor and record the number to be assured you wil get the correct pieces, What you are looing for will be on the riveted on tag, Will have and IGS or IAT or something similar with some numbers. Caps, rotors, and points location, either above or below the breaker cam will be determined by that number.

    Mopar used about 3 or 4 differet but intercahngable dists. but the body castings heights are different as is the terminal to the coil and the dist cap, they do not interchange between dist series.

    Besides pulling the dist is the only way to service ad get it set up correctly, pluse its pretty easy, just reference the rotor tot he bosy and the vacuum advance to the block, it can only goe back in right or 180 off.
     
  17. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    Well, it's been a few busy months, unfortunately not working on the car. I borrowed my buds compression gauge in June and the flathead is low on all cylinders, 30 psi at most. An then, the short Wisconsin summer carried me away. I have committed to seriously committing to this project come winter. I still keep changing my mind about the engine choice. I have been thinking more and more and more about rebuilding the flathead six. I've heard so much good about them, and the idea of having a hotrodded original motor to the car just seems cool to me. Thinking about the flatty, I have grown apart from the Poly idea. I just don't know yet, I should take "+ 55 Poly" out of the thread title for now, as not too tease anyone...can a thread title be changed?
     
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  18. 73RR
    Joined: Jan 29, 2007
    Posts: 6,398

    73RR
    Member

    Send a PM to one of the moderators, they can change the title.
    If you are keen on keeping a flathead the you might consider installing one of the larger Chrysler / DeSoto engines.

    .
     
  19. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,997

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    If the engines sit for a while, some of the valves will stick open, best bet is to pull the head and see whats up. They also like to eat top piston ring lands, and break rings. I've seen them run with all top rings broken out and 50 lbs of compression. Not fast mind you but run and run allday.
     
  20. 36DodgeRam
    Joined: Dec 16, 2008
    Posts: 499

    36DodgeRam
    Member

    My favorite way to start an old tired flathead engine is to pull it about 15 mph , pop the clutch in second gear, and drag it a ways. and if it doesn;t run then, its in bad shape!
     
  21. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    Well holy shit, a little progress. Over the weekend the front clip came off and the old flatty is out. Nothing mind blowing, but thought I'd share that I'm moving in the right direction.
    In further news, the 259 Poly is gone, sold. I think I've made up my mind to go with a small block mopar, something in the 318-340-360 family. The decision was essentially made based on a hp to $ ratio.
    Also, special thanks to "rockable" and "anythinggm" for their threads, your builds combined encompass exactly what I want to do with this car, and you are a couple steps ahead of me so the timing is perfect. Please keep the detailed updates coming!
    So, the front suspension work is probably next.
     

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    Last edited: Feb 20, 2012
  22. farmer12
    Joined: Aug 28, 2006
    Posts: 7,717

    farmer12
    Member

    Great to see some progress. I don't think you'll ever regret changing the engine for a v8. Keep up the good work!
     
  23. n847
    Joined: Apr 22, 2010
    Posts: 2,706

    n847
    Member

    awesome! Keep it up! Gotta love the early Mopar!
     
  24. anythinggm
    Joined: Dec 1, 2007
    Posts: 440

    anythinggm
    Member
    from Oregon

    You bet, I'll help anyway I can..I love this stuff..Keep up the progress..Mine is coming along nicely too..
     
  25. silverdome
    Joined: Aug 23, 2007
    Posts: 547

    silverdome
    Member

    Now that you got the old flattie out, when you have some time, pull the side valve covers off and roll the crank over and see if the valves are stuck. I just found this thread or I would have chimed in earlier. On the low compression you might pull the plugs and pour in some 30W oil and roll the crank over somtimes the rings are dry and you don't get much compression or vacuum to pull fuel into the cylinder. On the weak spark check the wiring to the ignition, coil and starter.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2012
  26. magneto57
    Joined: Feb 20, 2012
    Posts: 125

    magneto57
    Member

    CooooooooooL.......!!
     
  27. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    Thanks for the encouragement guys! I'll keep ya posted
     
  28. skiviskaves
    Joined: Aug 3, 2009
    Posts: 256

    skiviskaves
    Member

    A bit of progress: I've got the front end further stripped down. I Brought home a complete "warmed up" 1970 318 with Edelbrock aluminum intake and 650 4 barrel. Supposedly it's got a nice mild cam in it, but we'll see...the guy of course swore up and down that it is a great runner...it's dirty but it turns and feels like its got good compression so I'm going to try cleaning er up and running it. Now I'm on the hunt for a 5-speed. I'm working on getting Fatman dropped uprights from Gambino Kustoms and a disc brake kit from Rustyhope, then I can actually start building instead of taking apart.
    In other big news, I joined the Alliance today! :D
     
  29. anythinggm
    Joined: Dec 1, 2007
    Posts: 440

    anythinggm
    Member
    from Oregon

    Any new updates..?
     
  30. farmer12
    Joined: Aug 28, 2006
    Posts: 7,717

    farmer12
    Member

    x2!
     

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