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DonaldSmith last won the day on June 11

DonaldSmith had the most liked content!


About DonaldSmith

  • Rank
    Senior Member, have way too much spare time on my hands
  • Birthday 08/24/1942

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Berkley, MI
  • Interests
    47 DeSoto Suburban

Contact Methods

  • Biography
    Technical detail sort of guy, nuts and bolts
  • Occupation
    Retired architect and specifications writer


  • Location
    Berkley, MI 47 DeSoto Suburban
  • Interests
    Fixing and improving things around the house
  1. Double check that your distributor is not 180 degrees off. Been there, done that. The marks on the damper pulley don't tell you if Top Dead Center is at the end of the compression stroke or 180 degrees off. I've used the thumb method of determining if No. 1 (or No. 6) is at TDC of the compression stroke. Plugs out. Thumb over the plug hole. I can feel the compression stroke. Another way is to have an in-line spark indicator on the spark plug wire. I can see the plug getting its jolt as the damper marks are around TDC.
  2. Some tire lug wrenches tend to be 3/4 inch or 19 mm, virtually interchangeable. 19 mm equals 0.74803 inch, just shy of 0.75 inch. I have a folding 4-way tire wrench, that has four sizes; if I remember, one size is noted as both 3/4 inch and 19 mm.
  3. Since the transmission upshifts and downshifts, it's the semi-automatic. You mention a vacuum diaphragm. The 41 used a vacuum system to make the downshift. It sounds like you have the M4 transmission. Some of the guys can chip in. Also, get a shop manual to see how the transmission works, or is supposed to work. My '47 has the M5 transmisson, which uses a governor and solenoid to control oil pressure to make the downshift. Unintentional grounding of the downshift circuit would cause it to downshift unintentionally. Something similar is happening with your vacuum controls. (Additional information:) My transmission has reverse in the usual location, towards the driver and up, and the driving range is away and down, like third gear for a manual transmission. (The car takes off in third gear, courtesy of the fluid coupling, and upshifts to fourth gear.) There is a power range, away and up, like second gear in a manual transmission. (The car takes off in first gear, and upshifts to second gear; seldom used; called the "stump puller" gears.) There is no to-the-driver and down position, as for first gear of a manual transmission.
  4. Point made; the fluid drive is not the transmission but the coupling. But Royal Duke must be talking about the semi-automatic transmission, with downshifts and a vacuum diaphragm, a la 1941... M4?
  5. I kept my steering wheel and column when I added a power steering gearbox to my 47 DeSoto. Same considerations as for adding a rack and pinion. Support the steering column at the firewall, while keeping the shifting apparatus; find a way to maintain contact with the horn wire that runs from the steering wheel; shorten the steering column and add a spline and universal joints to run to the steering box or rack. At the top of the page, select "Downloads", then "Instructions, Manuals & Templates", then download "Power Steering", Chapters 1, 2 and 3, Steering Column Jacket, Horn Contact, and Steering Shaft Modifications. It was my trial-and-error way, maybe something you can adapt to your situation.
  6. I've got belts from Grainger Industrial Supply. Estimate a length with rope or similar. Order a few different lengths. Sometimes they are in stock, or pick up the next day. Take back the ones that are too long or too short. No problem, if the belt is still clean, unbuggered, and back in its original sleeve.
  7. The arm has to pivot as the generator is moved toward and away from the engine. So the bolt has to be loosened. This can allow a leak, as the bolt goes into the water jacket of the block. Short term, maybe no big deal. But it bothered me, so I substituted a stud that would not be loosened.
  8. Haunted by the ancient archives - Once upon a time, I had the adjustment arm like so: I don't remember how far away the arm was from the generator boss when I swung them together. What's done is done. Do whatever works.
  9. I might make a pinhole viewing device. Take a box, put a pinhole in one side, and let the image fall on the other side. Put a big hole in the top, for looking inside, without letting in too much stray light. The word "camera" means "room". Before there was film or glass plates that could be exposed and developed. the "camera scura", or "dark room", would provide an exact but inverted image of the world outside, on the far wall, or on a tablet or on transparent sheet. Artists could now get the perspective exact. The pinhole provided full depth of field but limited light. Lenses increased the brightness, but had to be focused. Multiple lenses had to be combined, to account for varying lengths of light waves, to avoid (technical words coming:) chromatic aberration. Now a miniature lens at the corner of an electronic tablet produces amazingly sharp images. 'mazing.
  10. Maybe a fender brace was an optional delete item, depending on production vicissitudes, like hood braces. They put them in if they felt like it, if the line wasn't too rushed, and if the supply was not interrupted.
  11. Now my basic beliefs are shattered. Maybe there is more than one way to install an adjustment arm. Maybe the slot is supposed to be at the bottom, and behind the generator boss. Nah, my way has the advantage that I was able to seal a stud and nut at the block, rather than having to loosen a bolt to free the arm, and the arm is free to pivot without loosening a bolt. To quote my mother-in-law: "' To each his own," said the lady as she kissed the cow."
  12. Yep, Bingster's adjusting bracket is flipped. And the bolt at the generator screws into the generator. Washer(s) between the bracket and the generator. Here's the bracket with an extension for my alternator. Pretend the extension is not there. Slot is along the top. I have ground the curve from time to time, to clear whatever setup I had.
  13. Here was my setup (I have an alternator now): Yes, getting the belt on the generator pulley may be a challenge. Try it with the belt off the water pump pulley, getting it on the generator pulley, and then working it over the water pump pulley flange. (I changed the bolt through the water pump into a stud, so that it could remained sealed when I messed with the adjustment arm. The arm is loose on the stud. I drilled through the nut keeping the arm on, and ran a cotter pin through the nut and the stud.)
  14. My DeSoto Suburban looked a little high in the back, so I added 2-inch blocks. after: (Edit: substituted a better photo)
  15. Cool! I need two of those for my 47 DeSoto. It looks like something I can make from flattening each end of a chunk of EMT in a vise. I used a turnbuckle to pull one of my fenders in line. I'll make one of these the right length and substitute it for the turnbuckle.