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Chapter 6: Diary: 5/11/00 thru 6/21/00

Jobs to do as of 5/11/00 :  bolt on the intake and exhaust manifolds and turbo and carburetor, change the system to 12 volt bulbs and or place resisters in the circuit for the fuel gauge and over-drive solenoid/relay: install the radiator and then corresponding sheet metal. To complete the car, I also need to fix one window and do some interior work. I expect the car will remain painted exclusively with the epoxy based DP40 primer which draws more attention than a custom paint job (it sets the imagination spinning).5/30/00:  I have bolted on the intake and exhaust manifolds and done all the plumbing necessary to support the turbo and carb.   I plumbed in the remote oil filter from a big-block Chevy and mounted it on the fender-well.  I decided that for now, I would run the one wire alternator as 6volt positive ground (any auto electric shop can do this in a few minutes) to make it a little easier to get the project moving under its own power. I will need to flip the wires on the ammeter and the coil.   I found a 6volt fuel pump to include, but for now, I’m using the “preloaded” mechanical pump.  I have rigged up a temporary exhaust system which routes gasses forward to the very front of the engine, then sneaks down in front of the fuel pump between the frame and the oil pan and back to connect with the old system.   I used flex-pipe but plan 2 inch or greater plumbing thru a turbo-muffler after I’m moving again. I may need to move the oil filter and bring the exhaust out thru the fender from its traditional exit (presently with the block-off plate on).   The linkage for the carb has been modified.  Tonight I hook up the choke and turbo-bypass linkage.  If there’s time, I’ll add the front sheetmetal.  Then, it’s some cotter-pins, fluids, timing and the front u-joint to be mobil. Schematic of induction plumbing
6/4/00:  This weekend, with the help of my son, I was able to make a dash plate to fit where the radio “filler plate” would be big enough to mount gauges, switches and the knobs to control the choke and turbo valve.  I fashioned an adapter for the end of the cable going to the turbo valve and mounted it and the choke.  I connected the shift linkage and assorted wires and cables for the overdrive.  I put in a new front u-joint.  We then installed the radiator bracket, radiator and finally the front sheet-metal. From posts, I decided to use Shell Rotella SAE 30 for break-in, then go synthetic.   I will get some good gas and a new 6v battery tonight, then……… 
6/6/00:  Last night I put in the antifreeze, H2O, Rotella, gear lube in the tranny, new battery and gas.  Using a syringe and entering thru the spin on filter ports, I primed the 2nd oil pump and then turned the engine over until I could see thru the clear lines that the pump was pumping on its own.  Next, I check the shifter linkage for proper adjustment and make sure the ignition is timed.  Is the front cylinder number 1?      Stay tuned for a sound byte of the running engine (hopefully it’ll run real quick now…..) 
6/8/00:  Last night I got it to start, but the oil pump shaft, which must be timed to the crank position was 36 degrees retarded.   I changed #1 wire over one tower on the distributer cap (clockwise) and it fired right up.  Some hoses got a little close to too much heat and melted thru, causing a bit of a mess, but any time you use as many hose clamps on a project as I have, that’s to be expected!  The second pump brings pressure up to 40-60# (maybe too MUCH!….) and perhaps I’d better add a restricter ahead of the turbo.  I think I’ve got the shifter linkage sorted, but before driving, I need to adjust the clutch.  Haven’t had time to notice much about boost yet, but I know the turbo is getting oil and cooling water.   I’d better insulate some hoses before I venture too far….
6/12/00:  Well, the TurboStude is driveable! This weekend, I sorted out the clutch and transmission linkage, and I think, the timing.  It charges ok and gives me a minimum of 40 pounds oil pressure at idle.  I had a significant time dealing with oil leaks.  The tubing I used just was not up to the pressure or heat involved.   I would suggest that if you ever do a project like this, you plan on using steel line or some such from the start!  I shrouded the fuel line etc. with aluminum heat shields.  As far as running goes, the car itself is fine.  The engine still needs some sorting out.  It never overheats.  At idle, it is purrrfect.  Coming slightly fast off idle, there is a falter, especially when not under load. See schematic .  Under load, with slow steady acceleration on the gas pedal it doesn’t seem to happen.  This is rpm sensitive, since I can raise the idle and reach the spot where it does this.  Changing the timing, the choke or the idle air screw doesn’t really do anything.  Speeding up, it stops faltering.  Presently, the turbo is not turning at idle, and only starts to spin (slower than I’d expect)as I goose the throttle (which I’m trying not to do much on this recent rebuild….).  Disconnecting the “Blow-thru” tube into the carb (no turbo in front) doesn’t change the flat spot.  The only other thing is the tubing coming from the “other side” of the fuel pump diaphragm which is connected now to a common tube connected to the fuel bowl vent and the blow-thru tube.  Opening this connection actually makes things a little worse, and pinching off the fuel bowl vent promptly shuts down the motor.  The boost gauge sits quietly not registering at all except to “shivver” on decelleration.  It also is hooked up to the common tube going to the blow-thru tube.  I notice that at the flat spot, there is a fair amount of turbulence in the clear gas line, but maybe that’s normal.  I also notice some aerosolized gas vibrating back an forth in the clear line going to the fuel bowl vent especially at the flat spot.  I suppose somehow there’s some kinda pressure thing going on and maybe a one way valve or something would help somewhere…..  I’m not sure if the turbo is healthy.  It moves freely, but you can definitely tell theres a bearing involved.  I don’t get clouds of smoke from the engine or spitting out the turbo intake.  There are some leaks in the exhaust gasket/manifold joint, and I’m not sure how well the “toilet seat” valve controlling the exhaust gasses (the waste gate?…) is sealing.  So far, no major cracks in the cast iron I welded.  Any ideas ?
6/19/00: This last weekend was “Back to the 50’s” at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds….11,000 street rods in  one place…awesome!  I drove the TurboStude 70 miles down to it, and cruised around over the weekend. I had arranged for a muffler shop to route the exhaust (2 1/2 inches) out thru the inner fender-wall and then thru a 3 inch glass-pack.  The exhaust note is not loud, just a bit throaty.   It had a very flat spot just off idle which I am now convinced must be the lack of richness in the transition circuit of this carb.  I was given some ideas on how to richen this up which I will try before abandoning the carb.   At 176 miles on the engine, I still am putting out a plume of light blue-gray smoke as I start.  There are tiny water droplets on the tailpipe.  The plugs are about even and reading a little rich.  I am weeping a bit of oil from a few spots which account for the oil loss on the dipstick.  The water/antifreeze level doesn’t seem to be going down, but I suspect some fluid getting past the seal in the turbo helping to cause the smoke.  The engine heats up, but in no circumstance gets remotely into the “hot” zone.  At start-up, with 30 weight oil, I run 40-60 pounds oil pressure which settles down to the high 30’s after warm-up.  I keep blowing 20 amp fuses on the overdrive relay.  I may have wired it wrong, but I also wonder whether the solenoid has a ‘polarity’ which I ran afoul of when I converted to 6 volt NEGATIVE ground.  One way or the other, the vehicle was a major hit!  Today I’m hoarse from spending the weekend explaining myself and my machinations…. People saw the PVC pipe sticking out the top and came over to deride me, only to groove on what they saw.   I drew graffitti all over the turbo and manifolds to point out how much (or little…) the pieces cost.  On the PVC pipe, I wrote: “I will get 15 pounds boost! What do YOU get?!”  A few got embarrassed when I asked how much boost their GMC 6-71 gets and how much it cost to install.  More than a few people just shook their heads and told me: ‘Those Minnesota winters are just too long!…..’.Boost! Once coming into a part of the carb circuit involving the main jets, the engine starts to spin the turbo.  Especially under load, one can hear the turbo spooling up.  The boost needle starts to jump around, and the car really starts to accelerate.  At 176 miles on the engine, I’m a bit leary of staying up at around 4000 rpm for too long, but I can tell something is happening. It will accelerate up a hill in third gear (not in overdrive). With the 7 pound radiator cap to limit boost, I still see the needle taking little runs up to 10#.  I can hear what I hope is a very early detonation rattle occurring up there (sounds sort of like a very distant diesel Rabbit….) meaning I should probably retard timing a bit more on the vacuum  somehow.  Hope it’s not a loose rod or something.   After spending a bit of time up in the boost, I get the impression that I’m going to run out of gas. Need to do some pump output tests.  I’m told that I’ll be ok if I can fill a pint jar in 1 minute, with gas…..).  When I come off of boost, I hear a sound like someone hawking up some phlegm.  I guess this is air trying to get out of the gate and running into the back of the turbine.  Maybe I’d better add a bigger blow-off circuit ( a hose tee, a screen door spring, a turnbuckle and an old valve…) or drill more holes in the flange that holds the radiator cap at the level of the “overflow tube”.  Need to make a final decision on whether to stay 6volt or go 12volt.  If I stay 6v, I think I will have more trouble hooking up a tachometer .
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