The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Driveway builder, Jun 10, 2019.
cool deal, love the offbeat Rambler! Be safe, have fun, be friends first!
"If you hate it now, just wait till you drive it."
Route 66 is a blast if you like history. I am going to counter Squirrel and say for the best time, don't make plans- take you where the road takes you and when you get there, you get there. That is the way the wife and I travel and we love it. Took us 3 days to get across Missouri on 66 once. We spent a day on 66 in New Mexico/ Arizona and didn't use a tank of gas, once.
Since you are on a timetable and have a destination, you will have to do a little research for the stops- interesting places, etc. There are a lot of good eating places and cool old hotels/ motels. Try to stay in the El Rancho in Gallup, NM or the Blue Swallow in Tucumcari. Both are really cool. There are apps for Rt 66 that bring up local to you points of interest. We used it last time and found some really cool stuff. Plan on taking 66 from Williams, AZ to Kingman- the longest stretch still in tact. And possibly Kingman to Needles to go thru Oatman and the wild donkeys. You should have a lot of fun if the kids are into it!
Of course you are. Every guy is a wagon guy, some of them just don't realize it yet
I realize that you could spend months exploring Rt 66, but Google Hooker Cut and Devil's Elbow and read about it before you go. Here's a short account of someone's trip through there. This area is one of the most fascinating portions of 66 in Missouri. If you or your family is interested in history than you'll be interested to find out that Hooker Cut was an important side note in WW II history. And about 35 miles further west is the Munger Moss motel in Lebanon. Been there for ages and has been somewhat restored. If you stay there ask the clerk to put you in one of the original rooms, not one of the more recent additions.
And about an hour before you get to Hooker Cut eat at Missouri Hick Barbecue in Cuba if you get the chance.
I'm sure you've already studied the attractions on 66, but don't forget the Arch and Ted Drewe's in St. Louis.
I realize that the above is in reverse order if you're going east to west, but it's just the order in which I thought of it.
I don't mean to insult your intelligence or become redundant with your already performed studies, but just want you to enjoy your trip to the fullest.
Rusty1 is right-you just bought a family heirloom. Congrats and have blast.
Sounds fun good luck, and enjoy all of it!
Between 1970 and 1973, we drove several portions of 66, but I regret to say, that I didn't do enough research on the Arizona section, and missed some of the iconic stops along the highway. My other mistake, was always making the destination the prime goal, and that precluded me from making unscheduled stops. My hope is, that you and the whole family will have fun, and that you will take the advice of the other posters, and research the route so you won't miss something you will regret later.
Three of the geographical sights from AZ that I will never forget were The Painted Desert, Meteor Crater, and although not on Rt66, the powerhouse in the Hoover Dam. The reason I added the dam is because it is such a historic achievement, that I think it would be worth a side trip.
To make your planning easier, there are lot of excellent sites on the web, a good example of what is available is the one I have posted below.
Part of the old route, before the realignment in 1926, that is interesting, went up from Santa Rosa up to Santa Fe, and you will need to make a choice on whether it is worth taking the 7 hour diversion. I can say, from having driven both, is that the drive through Santa Fe is prettier.
I hope you and your family have a wonderful trip in your Rambler, and that it is one of your lifetime memories.
When you get to Springfield Illinois, check out a place called the Cozy Drive In. They invented the corn dog, and boy, are they good! I also second Ted Drew’s in St. Louis. Sounds like a great time!
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Actually you should load all the photos first(up to 30 each post) and then go to the top of the list where it says make all Full Image. You don't need to click each one as Full Image.
I did the same in my OT 1969 Two Door Valiant and Harley Davidson Sportster, within a couple of years between trips. All before cell phones had camera's in them... Great adventures! Except one, Tornado vs. myself, on my Sportster. Luckily I found a railroad bridge to hide under to take cover in Western Kansas.... LOL
LOVE THAT WAGON!!!!!
Nice car, great looking family, and I hope you guys have a blast!
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We're just returning from a Route 66 trip, OKC to LA. We've traveled the whole route a few times, but not in an old car.
With kids I'd suggest stopping at the Blue Whale in Catoosa, OK and seeing the Petrified Forest / Painted Desert. Oh year, spend a night in one of the Wigwam Motels if you can, Holbrook, AZ and Rialto, CA.
There are so many cool sites it's hard to pick a few.
get the book that I rant just mentioned. I did the trip last month Illinois to Nevada. great trip. it was a blast.
Yes! My wife bought that book a few months ago. We’re all good to go.
Only thing I’m really worried about is the high altitude climb over the mountains on 66. I hope this little Holly can suck in enough air up there.
Thank you sir!
It should be fine. Higher altitude usually requires fatter jets, the opposite of what you would think needed. I used to have to re-jet my barracuda when I got to Kansas from Colorado, then fatten it back up once I returned to Colorado Springs. Lived there for 5 years... I used to hang out in Kansas to visit relatives a few weeks out of the year...
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High altitude wants leaner fuel mixtures. Smaller carburetor jets, and a lower opening power valve. Most people never bothered back in the day.
In 1962 my dad, mom, and my 3 sisters all piled into our '60 Ford 4 door with a 6 and automatic towing a Ted Williams tent trailer from Sears and went cross country from PA to CA and back. On the 4th of July we were climbing the grade up US 14 into Yellowstone National Park. The old Ford was barely making it but we were moving. About half way up the grade was a turn out with a pile of snow that was piled up when they plowed the road. Off course everyone but my dad wanted to stop to throw snowballs on the 4th of July. We did stop over my dad's objections that we would never get going again. Well my dad was right. The old 6 and auto just didn't seem to have the guts to get moving again considering the load and grade. Well dad wasn't a mechanic but he was a scientist who worked at Oak Ridge and Los Alamos after the war so he turned on the vacuum wipers to lean things out and low and behold we were moving again. Not setting any speed records but moving. I'm sure people thought we were crazy driving up the grade in bright sunshine with our windshield wipers on.
Yeah, the 195.6 OHV (which your Rambler would have if a stock six) needs to have the head bolts torqued every 10-12K miles or every three years, whichever is first. The engine was converted from a flat-head model of the same size and designed to retain as many parts as possible from the flat-head. That led to come compromises and a rather massive cast iron head. So it expands and contracts enough to eventually loosen the head bolts. Just loosen then tighten one at a time to 62 ft/lbs and you don't have to worry about sequence. If you loosen all then tighten back down use the factory sequence. Do that, and drill a 1/16" to 1/8" hole in the thermostat so a little water "leaks" by and you shouldn't have cooling problems or a leaking head... which can lead to a cracked head.
Adding AC adds a lot of heat stress to the engine. The dual electric fans will surely help, but the two core radiator might not be able to handle the extra heat in slow traffic. I have a hopped up Jeep 4.0L EFI engine in my 63 wagon. I used the two core radiator with electric fans and couldn't sit in slow traffic (under 40-45 mph) for very long. After about five minutes engine temp started creeping up. AMC has used 195 degree t-stats in their sixes since the 1950s (yours should have one). Putting a lower temp t-stat doesn't help. Run a 16# radiator cap to bring boiling point up (yours may have come from factory with a 12# or 14#, 16-18# is fine). That doesn't help with heat, but does prevent boiling over. When mine gets up to around 210-215 on the (aftermarket) temp gauge I turned the AC off. With the two core on a hot summer day in South Carolina (95 degrees, 50-55% humidity... or more!) the temp would slowly creep up even at highway speeds. Going to a three core stopped that, but I also had to upgrade the electric fans to prevent temperature creep with the three core radiator. I was using a pair of Amazon source 12" fans. Switched to a Ford Contour setup, which fits the larger radiator perfectly. The Contour fans won't fit the 63-65 two core six cylinder radiator though!! The 66+ six and 63+ V-8 radiators are around 2" taller than the 50s-65 six cylinder radiator.
Not hard to fit the V-8/later six radiator, but a minor mod is needed. I have an article on The AMC Forum in member projects on putting a Jeep radiator in my car (http://theamcforum.com/forum/fsj-jeep-radiator-in-rambler_topic76414.html). The later Jeep radiator is the same size as the AMC car 63-65 V-8/later six radiator. In that article you will also see a modified Ford Taurus two-speed fan on my 63 six cylinder two core radiator. The article on the Contour fans is at http://theamcforum.com/forum/ford-contour-fans_topic100292.html
Have a nice trip, and keep us posted!!
Just went back and looked at more of the pics. You upgraded the radiator, not just to electric fans, so you shouldn't have heating issues. Smart move!! I did catch the alternator upgrade...
I knew this would be right up your alley!
Looked like the perfect wagon for a family road-trip.
Subscribed. Definitely a bucket list trip, though mine would involve either a covertible projectile-nose Thunderbird or second-gen Cadillac deVille, but I don't have three kids.
Remember actually riding in the cargo area of a station wagon? We would take our sleeping bags, plug in a little black-and-white tv into the cigarette lighter, and happily pass the hours away. AND WE SURVIVED.
High altitude ? I think the highest you will get will be over the continental divide at Albuquerque, N.M.
at 5,351 ft. That shouldn't bother your mixture setting too much. Just don't try a side trip up Pikes Peak to 14,000 '
I drove that in 1968 in a `64 Chevelle and the power was really flat, and I almost fainted myself.
We did a trip in a 64 galaxie country squire flew into Jacksonville Florida bought it drove back too Austin took 3 days in the rain .
Suspension upgraded once we were in Austin. It was stock before
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I sure do. I was the youngest so I rode with the luggage. We played some kind of game, who could spot the most different state license plates. And the tunes on the radio. "North to Alaska" was fun to sing along. I remember we must have been going 100 miles an hour forever across South Dakota, with "Canadian Sunset" keeping time. I looked it up, it was an instrumental by Hugo Winterhalter, whoever that was. Lots of good tunes in those days. Weird how certain memories stick and others don't.
Yep... I also wired both fans separately just Incase one would break or start blowing fuses. I’ve driven it a few Times this past weekend now that it’s done. Seems to really do well with staying cool. I only ran the one fan while the AC was on. So far so good. I know I’ll have to run them both once we get into the real hot weather. I’m going to get on them head bolts this weekend just to be sure. Thanks for all your advice. Much appreciated!
The Griswold Family Truckster looks ready to go! I second the suggestions of The Blue Swallow Motel in Tucumcari, NM and the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, AZ. The wife and I hit those two just last September on vacation and both were clean and comfortable and the neon at night is cool as well.
That's what you would think... But it's actually the other way around. But what do I know, I lived in higher elevation for years and had to re-jet when going back to sea level to pevent fouled spark plugs. Every time....
Perhaps before the 1990's, when the Ethanol Fuels weren't forced upon us, it could have been the reason for this different case. My time frame of living there ended in 1999. It seems so backwards to jet it fatter when there was less oxygen, but my car would barely run with the stock jets, with a occasional lean back fire, and was reading lean when I read the spark plugs. My daily driver was a 340 powered Barracuda, with 7 years of awesome dependable service. These Mopars used spread bore 4 BBL carbs, which may also explain the anomaly.
Not trying to stir the pot, just applying real world experience, in my case, while actually living over 6000 feet, driving an old carbureted car every single day. I do miss 99¢ a gallon though...
But a traveler passing through has nothing to worry about. In a short amount of time, the drive will be back into lower elevation. Inlines are great engines, I would be surprised if he noticed anything other than some minor power loss.
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Several years ago I made a speed run to Oklahoma to pick up a '40 cab and chassis I bought on Ebay. I went thru Albuquerque at night and the interchange of I-40 and I-25 (or maybe the I-40 and hwy 45 can't recall for sure) was all light up in different colors and was very impressive. Other than that the I-40 in New Mexico sucked so its good you'll be on old 66 as much as possible.
NICE!!!! I love those old Ramblers. The wipers can be a drag going up a hill in a storm but no big deal. I see by the number of children you have you put those F#@k buckets to good use! LOL
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