The Saga of Midnight

Discussion in 'General Ranchero Help' started by Doc76251, Jun 12, 2019.

  1. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I think I will make this the first installation of the Midnight thread as I have a feeling there will be a lot more posts about what I will do in the future to my 77 Chero. I've been accused of being "verbose", I'm good with that, my world does not exist in 30 second sound bites so good reader ........ read on.

    In another post I chronicled the finding of a Saginaw steering pump and most importantly the bracket that attaches to a 5.8L (351Windsor) as well as a Ford Hydroboost system from a 93 Mustang 5.0 GT and a 3G alternator from a 3.0L Mercury Sable Wagon.......

    [​IMG]

    So as I sat with my horde of unobtanium booty I got looking on the internets for a way to clean up not only aluminum but the aluminum cased alternator which was badly stained, OK all of them were greasy messes. I found a you tube video of a guy that essentially dunked his alternator in a solution and hosed it off in his sink. He used LA's Awesome Orange and cut it 50/50 with water as he said full strength it made your skin peel. It's not the first time I heard of the stuff but I decided to check it out. I discovered it is available at Dollar Tree where everything is $1.00 and there happens to be one of those just up the street.

    For the princely sum of $7.42 I walked out of Dollar Tree with three 64 FL Oz bottles of the stuff as well as green HD scrubby pads, sponges with LD scrubby pads on the back a 3 pack of paint brushes and a big plastic bowl.

    [​IMG]

    I got home and decided the bowl wasn't going to work but an extra utility bucket would. I dumped two bottles of LA Awesome in and added two bottles of water. Then I grabbed the alternator by the power cord and submerged it in the solution (I did take off the AIS plug and stator plug first) and let it sit for 15min. Pulled it out and used the middle sized paint brush to knock of the big grease chunks, spun the pulley, hit it with the garden hose and dunked it back in the solution.

    [​IMG]

    15 minutes later it was a fairly uniform "dark grey" with no greasy bits and the pulley spun freely, not the shiny aluminum I was looking for but grease free and clean. I'm good with dark grey.

    [​IMG]

    Then I took the PS pump/bracket and dumped it in the same solution. All the bubbles disappeared. Having done more than my fair share of dishes I knew that meant the solution was maxed out. So I added the third bottle of LA's and filled the bucket with water. Lots of bubbles. In full disclosure the PS pump still had a bit of PS pump fluid in it.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    15 min later I pulled it out and hit it with the paint brush and the hose. Back in the bucket, add more water. 15 min later pull it out brush it some more, add more water, make more bubbles.

    [​IMG]

    15 min later pulled it out brushed out some remaining bits in the nooks and crannies and hit it with the hose one last time. I'll be a son of a gun the aluminum was a frosted "aluminum" looking bit of bracket, the PS pump had the paint flaking off it which came off under hose pressure.

    [​IMG]

    I intentionally did not "scrub" anything with wire wheels or stainless brushes and I used the sponge more than the scrubby bit when I did have to knock off chunks, I did not use the HD scrubby pads at all. Me being me, I dumped the bucket on an unsuspecting patch of weeds hoping that it might kill some of them. Three days later they are all alive and no worse for wear (Dagnabit).

    All in all I am pretty impressed with the LA's as far as removal of grease and other nasty bits. I checked the alternator and it is no worse for wear. The PS pump I had hoped to make go roundy roundy but alas it is still seized but will act as a good core return when I get the two tube version or mebby the remote reservoir version, still not sure yet.

    Here are the part numbers:

    1st the mounting bracket for the Saginaw

    [​IMG]

    2nd the pulley off the Saginaw pump

    [​IMG]

    Currently sourcing the parts to do the 3G install as my battery/ground cables need replaced and waiting for a sunny day to do the install.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
  2. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Seguin, TX
    All three cables for Babe, starting with the PMGR starter install, use cabling from a late '90s Explorer 4.0 OHV---positive, negative and charge. The positive and lower solenoid trigger are just long enough for the '72-'79, and both of the other cables are plenty long.
     
  3. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
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    I'm not going to use much of the original assy. other than the plugged bits. I'm going to go with 2 AWG custom battery connections and custom terminals to include those connecting to the mega fuse. The 130 amp alternator actually can pull 175+ amps at 3K rpm and 2 AWG is rated to 205 amps per the charts. Over build the cable assy let the fuse be the weak link at 175 Amps.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
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  4. Huevos

    Huevos In Maximum Overdrive

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    Do you do windows?
     
  5. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I'm hoping like hell to do windows!!! I hate the door pulls on the Ranchero and want my 77 T-Bird doors back with power windows and locks. That failing I have a custom upholstery shop locally that will install window cranks that are one touch up and down with modern regulators, motors etc. as well as custom door handles, pulls n power locks. A bit pricey at north of $2K tho.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
  6. colnago

    colnago In Maximum Overdrive

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    Let me guess … you do not have a Twitter account, right? ;)

    Joseph
     
  7. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    That's what I plan with Babe, and the charge cable is plenty hefty for it, but then, I only need a 95A unit anyway, as I'm not doing a lot of electrical accessories.
     
  8. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Actually I do/did, the professor for one of the courses I was taking for my MBA required us to set one up and "play with it". Made 20+ posts, got3 followers an A in the course and promptly forgot about it.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
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  9. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    I did that, the day Twitter went live. I set my account, saw zero activity, logged out, and promptly forgot about it. Got a reminder about it by email a few weeks later, and had forgotten the login info.
     
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  10. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    So I'm going to revive this thread in the hopes of keeping track of what I am doing per BB's idea. I talked with a machine shop today that will hot tank and clean the block, magnaflux it and take basic measurements (and give me the numbers) for $75 then if all is well and scooby with the gang I can have them re-install the freeze plugs and cam bearings for $30 + materials. If something needs more than just a hone they can go from there. I expect the cylinder walls will need at a minimum a hone to break the glaze and I am good with doing a flex hone at home to get there and go with a re-ring kit. If needs be I'm good with a cylinder bore of 0.030" over which will net me a 357 ci motor.

    General Question: Do re-ring kits for 0.030" over come with 4" pistons and bigger rings or 4.0+" pistons and regular rings to fit?

    Once I get the motor checked I will be able to determine if I need anything other than a basic kit or something more advanced. Worst case will be line honing the mains, polishing the crank and 0.030" over in the cylinders which I may just do out of spite since I want this thing BOMB proof. I may go so far as to let them install the mains and the crank as I was never comfortable with that whole plasti gauge thing.

    Once I get the block back in what ever configuration I will go forward with it and yank the original motor out of Midnight to scavenge the heads and intake. It has world Windsor Jr. Heads on it and an Edelbrock Performer manifold with and MSD Dizzy and box. While it's out it will be time to clean up and paint the engine bay poke in the Turboboost brake system. Get the AOD Trany looked over and or upgraded.

    Need to get an engine cradle so that I can mate the AOD & new motor prior to install for paint and testing as the less time flat on my back looking up the better.

    Then there will be the accessory bits which I may dry fit prior to install to make sure all of them line up and attach them after the motor and trans go in to provide as much room as possible during the install.

    It's going to be an expensive summer.

    Any bits or recommendations for any of the above are appreciated.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
  11. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Overbore kits come with 4+" pistons, and correct rings to match. So, the pistons will be within a specified tolerance to fit inside the 4.030" bores, I forget what the tolerance is off the top of my head. Now, if you don't need an overbore, but just a hone, you have to measure the current bore afterward, and purchase rings that take the honing into the mix. A lot of people go way overboard on the honing, creating a makeshift overbore, then put in standard rings and wonder why it doesn't make power and smokes like a hippie. I would recommend spending the lucre to do an overbore, and hang new pistons with new rings. You're starting back on square one, you break it in, you get a decent runner that's smoke-free.
     
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  12. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    I got you and that is where my head is leaning but my wallet keeps anchoring my butt to the floor. We'll see what we get after the hose down and flush. This whole Wuhan Flu thing hasn't killed me but it has certainly taken it's tole on overtime and expendable cash assets. That and Momma has got a feather in her butt about spring projects :(

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
  13. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

    Messages:
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    Just remember, Doc, that "Parts is Parts." A little saying us Fox Division sailors would say when the system had a breakdown.
     
  14. pmrphil

    pmrphil In Maximum Overdrive GOLD MEMBER

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    Keep in mind that the .030 overbore pistons will need to be installed on the rods, after the original pistons are pressed off. NOT a home job, but not too expensive. The 4.030 pistons should be matched with 4.030 rings for everything to be happy.
    Normal engine cradles use bellhousing bolt holes to mount engine to cradle - try looking for a set of "Moto-feet" - it's a type of cradle setup that only uses the motor mount bolt holes.
     
  15. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    I'd love to make a 'drivetrain cart,' designed with holding either an engine, a trans or both together, even double it as an engine test stand. I guess I'll have to learn how to weld....
     
  16. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
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    So I got busy tonight after work. The pistons came out with no issues the mains came off with no problem but i did have to "wrench" off #3 as it had a double sided bearing and was not coming loose by tapping. Bearings are worn but not excessively for both crank and rods. Nothing looks like it has slipped and all were in the correct orientation for their "halves". Freeze plugs came out with little issue other that the one in the valve valley that I had to drill a concrete screw into and pry out with a carpenters hammer. Haven't gotten to the gallery plugs yet but I need a 7/16" allen to get the oil cooling thing off so I will do all those at once and bag them appropriately when I get the tool for the oil thingy. Other than orange "mung" in the waterway they look good and the cylinder walls look good. The pistons look a bit cooked and smell awful so I think they are going away. Rods are tight, crank looks good. Clean and testing will determine the next steps.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
  17. handy_andy_cv64

    handy_andy_cv64 In Maximum Overdrive SILVER MEMBER

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    Two things to look at: cylinder cross-hatching (is any still there) and crank bearing surfaces (can you catch your fingernail on anything). But, if the cylinder ridges up top are minimal, barring anything having 'blowed up real good,' I think you'll have a good project to keep your time occupied.
     
  18. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Well the cylinder walls still have crosshatching but it looks like there is the residual from surface rust, you can't feel any difference but there is discoloration probably from when it sat in the yard with no oil in it. The crank is smooth as a babies butt, however there is discoloration between where the pistons were mated to it. I've got one plug screw so far that has stripped out and I'm searching for my easy out's, can't get to one as it's behind the engine stand support. All the freeze plugs came out with no issue. I think the motor is reconditioned or re-man'd as one of the freeze plugs had a "Warranty void if removed" washer on it. Which would make sense as the vehicle had 220,000+ miles on it and this motor hasn't. I'm still leaning towards a 0.030" bore simply because I like the sounds of a "357 Midnight":p. It also makes getting the re-ring kit easy especially if the main's are good as are the rods. There is some wear on the main bearings that is not consistent so a line hone may be in order which will of course require larger main bearings to mate with a stock crank (albeit polished). I'd like to pull it off the engine stand and set it in the truck but tonight is supposed to be thunderstorms so I'll see what tomorrow afternoon brings with work and getting the last plug out to send it to the dishwasher. Sat AM I'm running up the road to pick up my AOD as last weekend didn't workout. Still have to nail down a trans shop that speaks AOD. for a once over and possible upgrades.

    THEN I have to get Midnight up on blocks so I an get under her and free up the motor and trans. Once that happens the striping of usable parts begins as well as the cleaning of the engine bay, prime, paint, fill holes, poke in the turbo boost brakes, re plumb the PS, might have to look at the suspension since it's an open engine bay. My headlight wiring is a rat's nest and the alternator is going G3 but not in 77' terms as the accessories are from 96'. Hoping to make "Trunk & Treat" at the beach. Nothing that time and $$$ can't fix.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     
  19. Freestyle Don

    Freestyle Don In Third Gear BRONZE MEMBER

    Messages:
    240
    " It also makes getting the re-ring kit easy especially if the main's are good as are the rods. There is some wear on the main bearings that is not consistent so a line hone may be in order which will of course require larger main bearings to mate with a stock crank (albeit polished)."

    Line honing does not change the dimensions of the housing bores. The main caps are cut which closes tolerances, then honed to original specs. If the crank can be polished, you can use standard spec bearings, unless it has been ground, in which you would use bearings to match.
     
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  20. Doc76251

    Doc76251 In Fourth Gear

    Messages:
    426
    Location:
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    So I picked up the AOD this morning. All appears to be there with all the linkage intact minus the cable. Got the yoke and the dip stick but will need the back up reverse plug or mebby the FMX one will fit right on, will have to figure that out prior to the swap. Conceptually the cross member is either a direct swap or it will have to be flopped around the other way to clear the 14 bolt pan. Will have to figure out that too before install. Now to find a trans shop for a look see and possible upgrades.

    Cheers,

    Doc
     

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