Register now to get rid of these ads!

Projects My 1951 Mercury Restoration Part II

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Pro Stock John, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. I'm doing Sam Barris Merc style floating grille. I had a Desoto grille just like this and sold it.
  2. Been a while since I updated the thread. We spent 10 days driving to/from Grand Tetons and Yellowstone, Badlands and Mount Rushmore on the way. On the way saw a dark red '51 Mercury, no skirts, by our gas station in York Nebraska (who is that?).

    I poured some gas in the carb the other day, started right up.

    So today I replaced the fuel line from the (mechanical) fuel pump to the filter, and the line from the filter to the carb (all 3/8). Also replaced the filter with a clear one. Put a little gas in the carb again, and some lucas injector cleaner in the tank, started right up. Did a little drive, running good.

    My gas cap is vented, I looked at it. I am able to blow through it (is that any sort of test lol).

    I figured out why my brake lights were staying on, maybe fixed 'em. The setup is kinda rigged up so at some point I have to really take it off and mess with the bracket.

    I got some Spider caps, and sadly the little screws were missing. No biggie I'll ask for a set... And besides my lugs bolts are too long I need the smaller acorn ones anyway. Still took a quick pic.

    So what I need to do next:
    -My hood latch handle is broken (apparently not a stock hood latch. I got a stock latch and cable from Owens Salvage (cuz Bob is the MAN) and may try to use it but I'm also gonna see if I can have a buddy weld the handle on mine back on too.
    -Fuel gauge no worky. It worked before, I will check the wiring.
    -I'm running some sort of chrome 'Heartbeat' radiatior cap. It concerns me. What how do you say psi cap should I run, I sorta recall them coming in 7 and 10 or 15 psi when I mess with old cars in the 90's.
    -I've been putting it off, but I guess I will figure out what I need to do with door glass and trim. I need to order some trim, figure out if the cut down vent windows need a lot of work to use them, and take a crack at installing the glass.
    -I also have all the parts for the floating grille, and I've got a buddy who fabs who also owes me a big favor. I'll be calling him this week to see about doing something soon.




    Before pic of the braided fuel line deal:
  3. buckeye_01
    Joined: Jun 20, 2005
    Posts: 1,441


    Boy did that turn out beautiful! It has been quite the ride for those of us who have watched the evolution of this car from start to this point. I tip my hat to you buddy. You have turned a pastel colored mistake into a beautiful ride with class and style. I can't wait to see it finished, although they never are!
  4. tattedfordguy
    Joined: Sep 13, 2006
    Posts: 1,362


    Man, This merc is nice...
  5. Thanks guys. I hope I get a chance to work on it today, I'd like to hear what's banging by the rear, sounds like a loose muffler..

    Anyone have some thoughts on radiator caps? I'll do some researching after church (man we haven't gone for like two months), but I going to replace mine with a Stant with the red lever, I remember using those in the early 90's. Maybe I'll replace the vacuum line from the engine to the master brake cylinder too.
  6. enfieldjoe
    Joined: Jun 5, 2009
    Posts: 838

    from Eustis, FL

    Looking good John. What are your plans for the interior?
  7. Not sure my plan on the interior, I think my first move will be to work on my garnish mouldings and throw some paint on them and put them back in the car for now.

    Mechanically, drove the car maybe an hour today. My back seat footwell is full of all of my emergency supplies... gas, oil, coolant, funnel, rags, brake fluid, tools haha.

    I changed the 'heartbeat' radiator cap for a 16 psi latch style one from vatozone. Today is the hottest I've ever driven Mercula, it was 96F out. Ran at 200F, creeped up, settled in at 225F. When it started to go over I drove home. My idle in drive started to drop... interesting. I got home started two footing to keep my idle up. I sprayed carb cleaner at the base of the carb and around that vacuum line that goes to my HEI... idle drops. So I replaced the vacuum line, and put clamps on each end. I also tightened the carb down on the studs, it was snug but not really tight. Seemed like I eliminated those vacuum leaks.

    Next issue, is that I can adjust my idle on park nice, but when I put it in drive it drops too low. Or I can have the car idle high in park and it drops still too low in drive. I don't know how to adjust a carb except for idle so I'll have to do some research, or swing by a buddy's shop if I can't figure it out.
  8. Showed the Mercury at a local fest, Retro on Roscoe...

    Last edited: Aug 8, 2011
  9. WTF!!!! Customs never open their hoods.....COME ON JOHN!!!! Damn "racecar guy"

    Have someone get in and put it in drive,with their foot on the brake,then set the idle to 600. That should fix it.
  10. Im with Bob, customs always look better buttoned up, and need to be!!!
  11. I agree, but everybody was doing it and I'm weak. :)

    I 100% need to do some work on my rad/cooling combo. So my buddy Steve is gonna have the car for a few days, plan right now is for him to most likely fab up a shroud and I will probably go back to a mechanical fan. I'm pretty open to getting a new radiator too, so I'm thinking wider and aluminum. One guy I was hanging out with at the car show thinks my rad looks like something out of a 4 cylinder truck. :)

    I think I found someone local to help me fix these modified vent window frames. If that works out then I can get going on my putting my door glass back in along with the edge trim.
  12. Hood shut at the Autozone. Needs some chrome!

  13. MUCH BETTER!!!!!! Keep 'em guessin John...Looks great!
  14. Looks fantastic.
  15. slddnmatt
    Joined: Mar 30, 2006
    Posts: 3,669


    we need to get some stainless on that front window!!! looks like your getting some use out of it!!!! it looks pretty damn nice john
  16. chopnweld
    Joined: Apr 16, 2009
    Posts: 429

    from Nor Cal

    Sure does look damn nice indeed! Great to see it outside in the sun; it was worth every day and every dollar!
  17. Thanks guys, means a lot. Tomorrow I'm flatbedding the car to my bud's shop to fab a shroud, and maybe get a different radiator. The 20 mile drive to his shop is too risky, it's too hot out. But by this time next week I think we'd have the cooling/rad issues licked, and I can get back to finishing the car.

    Matt, I need to start up our consulting deal again, I'll call you later. :)
  18. These kinds of updates are a bit tangential since they are more drive train related...

    -Timing was off way too advanced
    -Distributor was off 2 teeth
    -Swapped on new carburetor
    -Two plug wires were plumbed to the wrong cylinders, was running on 6 cylinders... Looked all professional with the wires in the holders, never thought to check 'em... stupid
    -Per my bud it "purrs like a kitten now."

    -Now we can look at the cooling system. Then I'll have it back by next weekend and will get cranking on the door windows, window garnish moldings, reinstalling door sills, and get on fabbing the floating grille. Once I have the car back I am wondering if anyone knows the Sam Barris Mercury, and how many inches are between the sides of the grille and the grille surround?

    Thanks. I have two local options for welding the grille up for me.
  19. HOLY SHIT! Were the wheels on backwards too!!!!!!! Are you sure there were 8 plugs? hahaha!
  20. Better put Matt on retainer,hahaha!
  21. Looks great John!!
  22. Mechanical update... Runs GREAT!

    So I was messin' with my '51 Mercury, an hour here, an hour there and decided to have my buddy Steve at Fairlane Automotive in Niles take a look at the driveline in the car.

    Timing was off, two plug wires while nicely loomed, were crossed. Car would always run hot, too hot for traffic. Now after a carb swap, new plug wires, base timing at 10 degrees, timing locked out, 160 stat, still using my 16" e-puller fan, car runs around 180-185F on the highway and was running 190-200 in heavy traffic. I'm only getting 10-12 inches of vacuum at idle, my car has a big cam. Still have my AC, I haven't been using it but it works.

    Mechanically I need to redo my dual exhaust at some point as one of my mufflers has a baffle blown out and it makes some noise once in a while.

    I will say I've thought it might be "cool" to add a lower fan that pulled hot air out from under the passenger side, anyone ever done something like that?

    Back to cosmetics!
  23. Okay, I want to double-check here with the Merc experts... The part of this frame that is black will not be visible once mounted in the car, it's covered up by rubber and stuff... yes?

    So when I go to get these vent windows fixed I just need to focus on the piece going around the glass?

  24. Stu D Baker
    Joined: Mar 4, 2005
    Posts: 2,447

    Stu D Baker
    from Illinois

    Yes. I'm no Mercury expert, but there should be rubber that seals the movable glass. Stu
  25. Right. The black frame sits in the channel in your door and will not be visible. It is covered by a rubber weatherstrip.

    Your car looks great now by the way! SO MUCH better than what you started with. What a great transformation!
  26. Thanks!

    I gotta take these over to a place to see if they can fix them up, I hope to do that this week. Then I can get the door glass in the car.
  27. One word of caution however. Be sure that when whover fixes them up, that you fit them with the new weatherstrip before you have them chromed. I made the mistake of not doing that, and when I installed the weatherstripping, the window did not fit.
  28. So you are saying that the chroming could add so much material that the stock weatherstripping won't fit? I hadn't thought of that.
  29. No not that. I'm saying that when I bought new weatherstripping, it was slightly thicker / different than the old, and when it was all put together, the wing window would not fit...I couldn't close the window all the way. Just be sure to pre-assemble and test fit on the car before you go to the expense to have them chromed.
  30. 19Fordy
    Joined: May 17, 2003
    Posts: 6,262


    Check with Dennis Carpenter. I think he has the rubber vent window seals.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!


Copyright © 1995-2020 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.