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James_Douglas last won the day on February 21 2016

James_Douglas had the most liked content!


About James_Douglas

  • Rank
    Guru, have been a long time contributor

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  • Biography
    I am just a geek who likes old cars. We drive a 1947 Desoto Suburban as our daily driver.
  • Occupation

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  • My Project Cars


  • Location
    San Francisco
  • Interests
    Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
  1. 1946 P15 3-speed # 853880-29 teardown pics

    One thing to keep an eye on is the clearance when you stick the 2nd gear back on. It rides against a step the main shaft. Even with a new snap ring on mine, and a new 2nd gear, it was beyond the specification. That step face wears. I had to take the new 2nd gear to an industrial hard chrome shop and have them add a few thousands to the rear face of that gear to make up for the wear. It has run great for over 10 years now and I do drive this car a few days every week here in San Francisco city traffic. Also, pop out the little plugs in the case and clean out the little slider shaft, about a 1/2 inch long, that goes between the shifting rods. It is missed by a lot of people, even some so-called professionals who rebuild these things. James.
  2. Yokohama (Diamondback) RY215 {700R-15} Safety Issue

    I am glad to see you like the Coker tire. I have a friend with a '58 Cad Eldorado Biarritz Convertible that had bad luck with Coker tires. Are your tires that you purchased the "Coker American Classic Bias Look Radial" line? The American Classic Bias Look Radial is the only whitewall tire (760R15) I could find that is close in the size and load to the RY-215. I will order them later today. Best, James
  3. Yokohama (Diamondback) RY215 {700R-15} Safety Issue

    I have 6 inch rims. These tires had driven nice and been fine except for the new flat spot issue. I was planning on changing them out next year at eight year point. These are DOT approved tires. see https://www.summitracing.com/parts/yok-21501 I know at least a dozen people who use these tires. I have them on the '49 and I know someone who has them on a 1946 Chrysler T&C and a 1937 Cad. A lot of the Packard guys use them as well. In my case they get more "real world" use on the 1947 then most old cars. All of the dozen or so people I know who are using them don't put much mileage on them. I drive the car several times a week in the middle of San Francisco as well as 160 mile round trips to my place out of town at 65-70 MPH a couple of times a month. I have warned my friends to up the pressure to at least 55 PSI even if the ride is a little stuff and see what happens. In my case, I have to decide if I want to order another set from Diamondback or try Coker's new radial that looks like an old bias tire... James.
  4. Yokohama (Diamondback) RY215 {700R-15} Safety Issue

    See https://www.yokohamatruck.com/public/img/tires/31/bulletin_en.pdf James
  5. Hi all, As a rule, I do not use product supplier names on forums. But in this case I am as it is a safety issue. A few years back I had an issue with my diamondback tires. The splice where they vulcanized the white rubber to started to show a crack line. Diamondback was not too helpful, the whole time accusing me not checking the tire pressure or hitting it hard on a curb while parking. It was like they were reading a script! How the left rear would be hit...how many times does one parallel park on one way streets on the left side, even here in San Francisco. In any event, although I have spent almost $5K in tires with them in the last 7 years, I let it drop as it is just cosmetic and you really cannot see it unless you are right up close. About 6 months ago the car developed a "thump, thump,thump". It had all the earmarks of a bearing or universal joint going bad. Perhaps even a spider gear in the rear end. It has gotten worse as time goes on. Several professional mechanics in their 60's to 80's who all are long time classic car men could not fine it. I tried for months without any luck. We just could not hear exactly where is was coming from. Today we had the car on the rack at a gas station - shop (full service gas, old time shop, vintage 1930's gas station) that does my oil and full under car lubrication. While we had it up in the air we went over the car real good. We could not fine a thing. When one of the guys spun the drivers side front tire. In the daylight you could see a severe high/low spot. One the passenger side, we spun that tire and it had one about half as bad. That has to be it. These tires are seven years old and have about 25K miles on them, perhaps a little more. Now it is possible that the problem is due to under inflating the tires. When I purchased them, I called Yokohama and asked about the 60 PSI pressure. Yokohama told me that I could go down to 40 PSI as my car come in at a little under 5000 pounds. A few years back the outer edges of the tires had that look like they had some under-inflation wear so I increased the pressure to 50 PSI. These tires are rated at over 2000 pounds each or 8000 pounds total. I also run them on the freeway and at times have gone a steady 70 MPH and on occasions up to 75. The tires in the Yokohama catalog show the maximum speed as 65 MPH. (Which I did not find out until well after I purchased them.) So, the question is: Did I push the tires on pressure (too low) and Yokohama gave me bad advice that I could run 40 PSI? Is the freeway running up to sustained 70 MPH the problem? Is the once in a while 75 MPH the problem? Or, is there a problem with these tires in their construction? The rear tires show no problem. I know that a LOT of people have recommended these tires for the 1930's and 1940's cars. I did when I got them years ago. Heck, I like them very much as they are the same diameter, about 29 inches, and the same contact patch, at 4.5 inches, as the original bias ply tires. The contact patch at 4.5 makes steering way better. Plus the big white walls look great. Now I have to decide what tires to get. As this is the car I drive all the time, no new cars for me, I need tires that not only look correct, but function. Since I suspect that one or both of these tires could come apart in the future if I keep running them, the flat spot - Bulge is good size and producing a wheel trump that is very noticeable, I wanted to write up what is going on for others to be aware of. Best, James
  6. Wheel Stud Conversion

    One thing people should be aware of... On my Desoto's if you use rear studs it is hard, to impossible, to change a tire on the road. You have to jack up the body so high, to let the wheel hang, that if you have a flat on the road changing the tire is not an easy thing to do. The rear fender is just too low. James
  7. I have quickly became a Stromberg fan

    W.P. Chrysler was a cheep SOB. He was very focused on price and efficiency. In those days, the companies (Chrysler, Desoto, Dodge, Plymouth)were very distinct entities and had individual supplier histories. Dodge had a very long relationship with strongberg. Chrysler with Carter. I suspect that it was both price and relationship that drove a lot of decision making before 1950. In 1946-1947 however there was a disruption of Carter carbs due to a strike. Chrysler shipped cars without carbs. Then they shipped a kit to use a Strongberg in place of a Carter. I have the technical bulletin on this in my files with the part numbers and service information. The Strongberg is a more expensive carburetor back in the day when new compared to the Cater. James
  8. 1950 Wayfarer Trans Fluid

    "The literature I have seen from Chrysler does not recommend ever changing the Fluid Drive oil, just topping it up annually." I doubt that Chrysler ever thought that their fluid would be in a coupling more than 20 years. I think the above is bad advise. To see why read my very old post.
  9. KingPin Saga DONE

    I would take the spindle, the pin, the upright to a machine shop. A good shop will hone, not ream, the bushings and upright in a line hone to fit the pin. You should feel zero movement when done, but be able to spin the king pin like a top. If properly honed to exacting tolerance the pins will go in perfect and when you put the tapered pin in the side of the upright, the king pin will rotate nice to accommodate it with hand pressure locking the tapered pin in place. My machinist did not have the exact size hone he needed for his sonnen honing machine. I found one off eBay with stones and he did it for free and I gave him the hone. If ever need another, he will do it for free. Using a good machine shop sunnen machine to hone, not ream the king pin, results in a very nice job. James.
  10. Seat belts

    In California front seat belts became the law in 1964. Front and Rear in 1968 because the feds required it. If the car has belts installed in it, you must wear them. If you don't have them, or take them out, of a pre-1964 car you don't need to have them. The child seat and belt laws are a gray area. All the child seat and child belt laws in CA are predicated, and under, the general seat belt laws here in California. Nobody has been able to get a directive from the State Attorney General's office to clarify the issue. Since all pre-1964 cars are not required to have belts, does that mean that kids don't need to be in a seat or belted? The safety of the issue is not in question, just the legality. I have asked and they refuse to answer. They only give legal responses to legislators and government agencies. If the State said all kids must me in a child seat, or belted, then no kid would every legally be able to ride in a classic car not so equipped. Even during a parade or a special event. James.
  11. How many miles on your flatheads?

    I use my 1947 Desoto LWB Suburban here in the middle of San Francisco every week. I also dive it a couple of times a month, about 160 mile round trip, to our place in a small town. That has a lot of 65-70 MPH running. I have over 50K miles on my rebuild which was done about 2005. I am noting some dropping of oil pressure. Just a little. I also have started to see in the last year some oil pulling by when going down Waldo Grade at 60 MPH and allowing the engine to compression brake down the hill in 1:1 gear. With the OD in and the RPM's lower not so much. I suspect that the guides are starting to wear and I am sucking oil under high vacuum - high RPM situations. When I had the engine open a couple of years back for the melted plug (see old posts), I did put in new rings and ground the valves. Although how good the hone was leaning over the engine bay is an open question. In about 20K more miles, I suspect that I will have to pull the block and rebuilt it. Given that this car is over 4000 pounds, only has a 251 six, see's San Francisco Hills, and long freeway runs on a constant basis, I think I am doing good. If you rebuilt a flathead WELL, as if you are doing a race engine, I see no reason why it will not go 50K to 60K without any issue. Mine has. James.
  12. Shock absorbers

    Bingster, nothing I am selling...just LOTS of used and NOS-NORS parts. I have been around, although not that active, on this site since 2003 or so. I big Desoto I drive on a weekly basis here in San Francisco. So, I stock my own parts to some extent. I noticed in the master parts books that the valve's on the shocks for the larger cars were different. I suspect some engineer did the math to match the shock to the spring rates. That is why, I may go look into custom shocks with adjustable valves. I am curious, has anyone every taken apart a stock shock like they talk about in the service manual? James
  13. Shock absorbers

    This week I have been moving parts around. I found the box that had the shocks I took off the 1947 Desoto Suburban when I first purchased it and the 1949 Desoto Convertible when I took it apart. The shocks are MOPAR with the CDPD stamp on them and factory part numbers. They are Monroe shocks. 1947 Desoto S-11 Suburban: Front 1121207, closed 8.75", open 12.875," Dia max 2.125" Rear 1121208, closed 12.5", open 20.5", Dia max 2.125" 1949 Desoto S-13 Convertible Front 1311851, closed 8.75", open 13", Dia Max 2.125" Rear 1311852, closed 12.5", open 20.5", Dia Max 2.125 Interestingly the Monroe cross reference on the 1947 Desoto shows a front part number of 5752. On Amazon or Jeg's they are about $22 each. At NAPA or O'Reilly they show up as from Rare Parts at $200! What a joke... I may have a custom set made for the big Desoto. The shock valves were different according to the master parts book for the heavy Suburban. Custom adjustable shocks may be better for this daily driver than another set of modern Monroe's. The 1947 Shocks are know to be original to the car. The 1949 I suspect may have been changed once. Best all, James
  14. 1949 Desoto Gear changing problems

    Unless you want endless problems with the M6 transmission, convert the car back to 6 volt positive ground. I have run my 1947 Desoto for 15 years here in San Francisco (proper not the burbs) and 6 volt works just fine. As long as it is maintained correctly. My 1949 Desoto is also 6 volt positive ground. Use a lithium 12 volt emergency starter battery with a radio, cell, or other in the car if need be. No need these days to convert unless you are changing the car over to a modern engine.
  15. gyromatic problem

    I wish that people would stop tossing around the recommendation that ISO-22 should be used in the fluid couplings without informing people of the issues. The fluid needs to be matched to the perceived state of the roller bearing in the coupling. Also, NOT ANY ISO-22 fluid will do. It MUST have anti-foaming agents in it. Most NAPA ISO tractor fluid does not. Read my old post in its entirety to understand the fluid that one should consider using in a fluid coupling. Best, James