Goodbye 78, hello 62 or 66

Discussion in 'General Ranchero Help' started by havensole, Mar 31, 2011.

  1. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

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    Rialto, CA
    Never thought of that. Thanks for the info. I will have it checked when I get back from Vegas next week.
     
  2. burninbush

    burninbush In Maximum Overdrive

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    Really need to work on getting the steering less sensitive. The slightest little nudge on the steering wheel and I'm halfway into the next lane.

    +++++++++++++++++

    I suggest that you take it to a tire & wheel shop, just for a diagnosis even if you intend to do some or all of the work yourself. There are a bunch of joints in the front suspension that all have to somewhat work together. Alignment problems could easily be responsible for the twitchy steering -- particularly camber leaning the wrong way due to wear in the various pivots. Could also account for the brake pulling you spoke about, since braking puts severe torque on front end pivots.

    Even on its best day, steering on one of these ancient cars is nowhere nearly as good as on a modern strut front suspension with rack /pinion steering.
     
  3. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

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    723
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    Rialto, CA
    Thanks for the info guys. I never expected the great steering of a modern car. I remember driving the boat (78 ranchero) was a nightmare at time, but was a lot more comfortable on the highway. I don't know exactly what the previous owner might have done to the suspension, or if the owner before him did anything. Could all be stock, which would surprise me too much, at which point I would want to redo most if not all of it. Since I've spent more time in the engine and interior on previous cars, and pretty much no time on any suspension work, can someone give me a list of the recommended order to replace things in? I'd love to just swap everything out at one time, but I am not sure my wallet can handle that. Thanks again.
     
  4. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

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    723
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    From reading some other article it sounds like my braking issue could be from a clogging hose since the car brakes fine in normal, light use, but as soon as hard braking, even if I am already light braking, is when the car pulls, but then after a second corrects itself. Wish I had time before I left for Vegas to check this out, but it will have to wait until I get back.
     
  5. burninbush

    burninbush In Maximum Overdrive

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    From reading some other article it sounds like my braking issue could be from a clogging hose since the car brakes fine in normal, light use, but as soon as hard braking, even if I am already light braking, is when the car pulls, but then after a second corrects itself. >havensole

    +++++++++++++

    My wetware is telling me that you should pull the front drums (?) and examine the wheel cylinders. This could be something like a piston not moving properly. I doubt the clogged-hose theory.

    Assuming it isn't due to the front-end geometry changing from rest position when you brake.

    Which is why I'll again recommend that you take it to a pro -- tell him that you want to find out if it's in good enough shape to get a wheel alignment at his shop -- my guess they'll examine it all very quickly and tell you what sort of problems it has, and then you use that to figure out the priority of repairs. Just shotgunning by replacing everything will almost surely end up replacing some parts that are still OK, and not getting to the real problem until the very end of the repair cycle. Given your statement of your experience -- this sort of work is not as easy as it looks, and if your time is worth anything you might find it cheaper to just let a shop do the work.

    If you decide to do it all at home then you can probably find reproduction assemblies on ebay -- upper and lower control arms with ball joints, etc., also rebuilt power steering parts.

    Oh ... be sure to look at the flex hoses from the frame to the front brakes while you are under there. There's also one at the rear -- these are parts that should be replaced just based on age and how much damage you'll see if one fails.
     
  6. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

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    Ok, so I forgot to mention I noticed an area on the firewall, a huge opening, that looks like there is something is supposed to go in there. Not use to having use holes in a firewall. Anyone know what his is and if something is supposed to fill this hole that is missing?

    (couldn't seem to upload any photos directly, so here is a link with the pic)
    http://www.jamessadlerportfolio.com/Images/odd.jpg
     
  7. hawk

    hawk In Fourth Gear

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    I believe there used to be a rubber plug there that the original wire ran thru. The two red wires look like add ons on by the PO.
     
  8. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

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    Yeah the two red wires go from the battery to a switch under the dash to the lights behind the grill. Been trying to find a plug or something to put in there, but coming up empty. Looks like its time to start fabricating.
     
  9. LSChero

    LSChero In Maximum Overdrive PLATINUM MEMBER

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  10. davis

    davis In Maximum Overdrive

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    wiring directly to a battery without a fuse can pose a problem with a fire.

    burninbush is right on. get it looked at up on a rack with a tire/brake/suspension guy.
    they'll tell you all the points that need fixing. and if one side needs something like a wheel cyl. you'll have to do the other side.
     
  11. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

    Messages:
    723
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    I agree about the fuse, and is why I haven't used those lights other than to check their functionality. It is one of the wiring things I was talking about that was half @@@ed. I'll be redoing a lot of the electrical things in there for the same reason.

    I'll take it to a tire/suspension place when I get back. Need to find a good one around here.

    Won't be taking the girl to Vegas like I had hoped. Not completely co
    Comfortable doing that long drive with the steering and braking issues. There's also no functional stereo on it yet, who would make for a very boring drive.
     
  12. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

    Messages:
    723
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    Something to throw out there for, probably, way down the line. Today while driving the 67 to work I noticed that there just isn't that much power coming out of the girl. It is fine on the streets but when I get on the freeway I have to almost floor it to stay around 60 mph. I know this is a 44 year old car with a small v8, and so I'm not expecting to be racing down the street or anything. Anyway, I have been trying to think of ways to help the car out without getting ridiculous. I believe the car has a C4 tranny and 9" rear (i'll try to confirm that when I get back from Vegas) and so I was wondering about changing the rear gear ration to something like 3.5 or 3.3 since that seems like a more logical place where the power coming from the engine would get hindered. Might also just be a transmission in need of servicing. Thoughts?
     
  13. steeread

    steeread Guest

    When your truck was new it boasted some pretty tall tires, what would be equivalent to an "80 or 82 series" today. I'm betting its got R70 or shorter on it now, which makes them have to turn a lot more rotations per mile. This makes your car have to rev higher to keep up the pace. Unless previous owner has swapped the drive gear on the speedometer cable, your MPH should also read much faster than you are actually moving.
     
  14. As Is '66

    As Is '66 2 Wheeled Mod Staff Member

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    5,756
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    I just fount this thread, this morning...
    It looks like you got yourself a GOOD CarTruck there!!!!
    Good luck with it, It`ll serve you well,
    Dennis
     
  15. davis

    davis In Maximum Overdrive

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    is it a 2 barrel carb with stock manifold?

    you'll probably find yourself tuning the whole car.
    i'd bet it has a 8" rear with 3.7 or so gears unless it was changed.

    i think the DUI dist. setup you have may help, no points, i think ? no coil?
     
  16. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

    Messages:
    723
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    Thanks As Is. It is a good one. The 67 year has always been my favorite body style, and so I was very thankful that my friend found the craigslist add. I was really sticking to the local area and he was looking outside of that. I had given up hope finding something I'd be happy with, as most of the listings were mostly rust buckets or needed an extreme amount of work to get running. Right when I had pretty much given up hope on getting a Ranchero, I was beginning to look at other cars :(, he found the listing for this one out in San Diego. To make sure it ran decently I had the owner drive it halfway between us and him, also because I really didn't want to drive all the way down near the border in case we didn't like it. It has it's issue for sure, but it runs and everything is there. I can't complain for the $2500 I spent on it.

    The 66 I was looking at before this one had a lot of things I'd like done to this one, like a 390 motor, t5 transmission manual conversion, front disk brakes, dual exhaust, but it just had way too many problems and couldn't drive the 6 miles back to my place where I could fix them. If it had been running enough to at least drive home I probably would have bought it versus the 67. Seller also wasn't very available to show us the car. Ended up being one of his son's who helped him with it, which probably was better as we heard a lot more of the problems than I'm sure the seller would have let on about.

    The 67 is a project car, but I can still drive it to and from work (roughly 30 miles each way) which was a key selling point with my wife. Our PT Cruiser is our daily driver, but it has been having a lot of electrical problems that even the dealer can't seem to work out, so having another car that is fairly easily worked on to be a daily driver while the PT is in the shop was the main reason I was able to convince my wife to get a new car and sell the 78 ranchero.

    When I get back from Vegas next week I'll be pulling up the carpet, sanding the interior down and giving everything a few coats of rustoleum primer and sealing everything up. There are a few hole in the panel between the cab and bed that don't look like rust holes that I'll need to patch. Once that's done I am hoping to get a couple of coats of paint on the inside and if time allows I'll do the same thing to the bed. I will probably coat the floor and firewall with the rustoleum bed liner stuff, as well as the bed. Of course this is as long as the weather permits it. If I have some time over that weekend I am hoping to jack up the car and give the underside a good coating of at least the rustoleum primer stuff. I've used the stuff before on the 78 and it worked great.
     
  17. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

    Messages:
    723
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    Hi Davis,
    Yeah I am pretty sure it is the stock manifold and 2 bbl card. I know the carb was recently rebuilt. I would think a 3.7 ratio would give a better performance, but I really don't have much to compare it to.

    The DUI setup is nice, and was one of the selling points with the car. No points. Complete electronic ignition/distribution.

    I am really wondering about the transmission now. I'm not completely sure it is going into its 3d gear. I'll have to look at it more when I get back.

    Rained a bit here last night on the way home. I know the wipers work now.
     
  18. burninbush

    burninbush In Maximum Overdrive

    Messages:
    8,431
    Location:
    near SF
    I am really wondering about the transmission now. I'm not completely sure it is going into its 3d gear. I'll have to look at it more when I get back. >havensole

    ++++++++++++++++

    Well, not shifting into 3rd would be a problem for freeway driving. But you can manually shift the car with the gear lever, can't you? Run it at around 45mph in Drive -- should be in 3rd -- pull the lever to force a downshift to 2nd, and if you don't feel and hear a difference then there's your problem.

    If it actually isn't upshifting to 3rd, then it could be a bad vacuum modulator -- not uncommon to find a bad one, easy to repair. Again, a visit to a transmission shop would answer these questions immediately.

    I don't mean at all to insult you with this advice, but if you can't tell whether or not it is upshifting then you need some pro help.
     
  19. havensole

    havensole In Overdrive

    Messages:
    723
    Location:
    Rialto, CA
    I was just reading about the modulator. I'll check if it is shifting to 3rd when I get back. Really wish I had some time before then to work on these types of things. Good idea about checking if it is in second or not. Might have time to at least check that out. Need to get under the car anyway when I get back to adjust the column linkage as it is way off. The notches for PNRD21 don't line up on the indicator. Just need to adjust it on the transmission, so I'll check the modulator too and make sure there is no hose rot or anything like that going on. Thanks for the advice.
     
  20. davis

    davis In Maximum Overdrive

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    1,873
    Location:
    Whittier, CA
    your trans shift selector has a slotted rod in it to bolt to lever column. go thru all gears with engine off to feel the trans move. its not uncommon for the selector to "slide" down from reverse all the way down. the detents get worn out.

    your power problem may be a vacuum leak. if its not shifting and lack of power, that may be it.
     

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