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Old 10-01-2020, 02:09 PM   #51
JohnMc
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The 544 and 122/Amazons share the clusters - just a minor difference in the silver trim piece. On the PV that part is visible along the bottom, so it's prettier and says 'Volvo' on it, it's hidden on the 122. But they otherwise interchange.

And FWIW it looks like at least part of that cluster is from a later model Amazon - the 1963 dashes had smaller indicator lamp lenses, with little chromee outlines. The later 122 dashes had the larger round lenses with no surround as above.

EDIT: Never mind on that last point, I was going to find a picture of the different light style, but while doing so found a source that said they changed to the later style in the latter part of 1963 production.

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Old 10-01-2020, 07:16 PM   #52
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The 544 and 122/Amazons share the clusters - just a minor difference in the silver trim piece. On the PV that part is visible along the bottom, so it's prettier and says 'Volvo' on it, it's hidden on the 122. But they otherwise interchange.

And FWIW it looks like at least part of that cluster is from a later model Amazon - the 1963 dashes had smaller indicator lamp lenses, with little chromee outlines. The later 122 dashes had the larger round lenses with no surround as above.
Its definitely a replacement cluster in the 544. I didn't mention it in the write-up, when looking on the back of it unit I did note it was stamped 1965. In the trunk of the car was one of the bezels without the Volvo lettering.
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Old 10-01-2020, 08:29 PM   #53
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Those early warning lights are not easy to see. Small and dim.
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Old 10-07-2020, 04:28 PM   #54
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Suck - Squash - Bang - Blow

When attempting to start a 1960s redblock, one of the prep steps I do is to prefill fuel into the carb bowls. After removing the tops, the bowls are filled about 2/3's of their capacity and the caps are secured back on. Assuming any fuel in the tank is old and unusable, a temporary fuel reservoir is created using a 1 liter plastic seltzer bottle. A hole is carved out of the soft plastic cap with a knife wide enough to insert the fuel hose into. The fuel line isn't sealed against the cap as this will allow the bottle to stay at a neutral pressure. If completely sealed, the vacuum created by the fuel pump will cause the sides of the plastic bottle to compress inward as it operates. This mini tank is nestled into the front fender pocket next to the radiator as this will keep the bottle upright and leak free. While securing the fuel hose from the temporary tank into the fuel pump is when I uncover a bit of treasure, an off-brand 5/8 socket sitting deep in the engine bay.






Now the engine has a fresh supply of fuel it is at the stage to see if the dormant redblock is ready to be awakened. About this time my friend Alex shows up. I wanted to get another person around as a second pair of eyes and hands are helpful in case anything goes south. Alex assumes the key turning and gas pedal role as I take position on the other side of the engine with a can of starting fluid. After a squirt or two into each carb throat, Alex turns the key and the familiar "chug-chug-chug" of a pushrod redblock fills the air. After cranking the engine twice for 8-10 seconds of duration, halt the process to look around the engine. There is fluid visible inside the fuel pump dome and the level has dropped in the mini tank so the fuel pump looks to be operational. The engine sounds like it is trying to start, slightly labored as the piston compress then evacuate the fuel/air mixture in the cylinders. With another squirt of starting fluid a third attempt is made and that is when the battery gives up the ghost.

IMG_5100


Operations go on hold as I dig out a jump pack and clamp the leads to the tired battery. Additionally I pull out a timing light to make sure the spark side of the equation is occurring. With a fresh source of electrons available to the battery, the key is turned and the engine starts to crank again. The timing light strobe stays dark as the starter rotates the pistons at a healthy rate. This is repeated several times and do not see any sort of flicker from the timing light. As I listen to the engine turn it still has an uneven tempo, as in something is happening in the cylinders. Not the even, consistent rhythm when removing the coil wire for a compression test, or when it is out of fuel. Ask Alex to turn the key again and the carbs are given a spritz of starting fluid. The starter engages and after a few seconds there is a few coughs and sputters then smoothing out as speed of the engine increases. Alex disengages the starter and "Hot Damn!", the engine is running on its own.

IMG_5105


Cut the engine to take another inspection around the engine bay. No dramatic leaks or issues are found so its time to start it up again. The engine rumbles to life, though running somewhat rough. Not unexpected after being woken up from hibernation, it does seem it may not be running on all cylinders. What is also apparent is the drivers side motor mount is pretty much at end of life with the amount of vibrations the engine is exhibiting. An unidentified periodic metallic-sounding scraping noise is happening, more so when the engine bogs down or stumbles. It doesn't seem to be related to the radiator or fan as that was the first concern. Run the engine several more times in 20-30 second stints for a total of 4-5 minute total run time. Somewhat amazed when looking at the dash see the temperature needle has moved to the right indicating the gauge is working. By now its evident there are several leaks around the fuel lines and the top of the carbs. Fuel is dripping down onto the shield below the carbs then creates a quick sizzling sound when it then lands on the exhaust down pipe flange. Amazingly, the mini fuel tank is pretty well drained and there is one last test to do.






Restart the engine and its it running more rough than smooth, start to feather the gas pedal to raise RPMs. At the same time I push the clutch in and shift the car into 1st gear. As I let off the clutch I can feel the engine speed start to drop and pressing the gas pedal down the engine speed picks up a bit. Let off the clutch and continue to feather the throttle and the car begins to move forward under its own power. Due to space constraints, the car has 10-12 feet of space in front of it. After going about 8 or so feet (slowly) press on the brake pedal and the car stops. The engine is killed and though rolling the car back to its original position, the 544 officially had driven under its own power. At this point, stop work for the day, though not before sticking the battery on a charger. All-in-all, very happy the 544's engine was able to be be coaxed back to life and was able to do a short test drive.

IMG_5286
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Last edited by polaris; 10-08-2020 at 02:52 PM..
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Old 10-07-2020, 05:02 PM   #55
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The timing light strobe stays dark as the starter rotates the pistons at a healthy rate. This is repeated several times and do not see any sort of flicker from the timing light.
And yet, very soon afterward, it coughed and started? Hmmm. (Did you omit telling us the step about waving the magic wand?)

Congrats! How very cool to see how you coaxed it into shape.
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Old 10-08-2020, 01:34 AM   #56
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And yet, very soon afterward, it coughed and started? Hmmm. (Did you omit telling us the step about waving the magic wand?)

Congrats! How very cool to see how you coaxed it into shape.
Thank you.

What I did omit from the write-up was the conversations between Alex and myself around how the engine was sounding after hooking up the timing light. We both agreed the engine was acting as if it was close to starting. Decided to attempt to start the engine again rather than check/troubleshoot the timing light & connections, that is when the engine fired up and I was able to record it with my phone.
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Old 10-08-2020, 02:21 AM   #57
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Congrats
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Old 10-09-2020, 05:39 PM   #58
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Default Measuring the Cylinders

With the engine coming to life there were several things which were needed to be procured. Ordered among other items were motor mounts, valve cover gasket and a v-belt. When the cardboard box was dropped off at my front door a couple days later, work resumed on the 544. Motor mount replacement started by removing the top nut and sliding under the car to do the same to the one retaining the mount to the subframe. Utilizing a floor jack and a piece of wood, the engine was lifted up at the front left corner. After raising the redblock up and separating the mount and bracket, wrestled the old mount out and the new mount set in its place. The engine was lowered back into place and then came across a small hurtle; the new motor did not have any fasteners included and the old mount utilized larger stud/threads. It took about 15 minutes to locate a suitable pair of fasteners to secure the new motor mount in place. Decided not to change out the passenger side mount as while it was old, it still was intact and not compromised.







Next up for the engine was a compression test. This is being performed on a cold and long dormant engine so I expected the compression numbers not to be on the higher side. At minimum I do want to see if the cylinders are around the same compression readings. Unplugged the ignition wire lead off of the coil, then the same on each of the cylinders. The spark plugs are removed and find they all are dark and sooty. Not totally unexpected as the carbs have not been adjusted and seem to be running rich. My procedure is to thread in the gauge, mash the gas pedal to the floor, turn the key, count 10 "chugs" of the engine, shut things down then check where the needle sits. In this first round the average is 135 PSI (+/- 5 PSI) across all of the cylinders. Not that bad or horrendous in the scheme of things.








The compression test is re-run on the engine, this time with some oil added to each of the cylinders to see what that does to the numbers. After squirting oil in the spark plug opening the process is repeated down the line. Each of the cylinder reading improved 15-20 PSI resulting in an average of slightly above 150PSI (150 - 160 - 145 - 150.) I am wondering how much the compression readings will change once the engine is run for an extended period of time.






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Old 10-10-2020, 07:40 AM   #59
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[/QUOTE]
I am wondering how much the compression readings will change once the engine is run for an extended period of time.
[/QUOTE]

Congrats on getting it running. My experience with quite few engines that have sat like this one has is the rings are usually gummy and stuck in the ring grooves. Although, after only 50-100 miles the rings feel up, the engine will run better and the compression readings will increase.

You can help the varnish on the rings free up it you continue to soak them with some Mystery oil, ATF or any thin oil or penetrant and turn the engine over with the starter periodically. Good luck with it!
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Old 10-12-2020, 02:40 PM   #60
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Default Distractions and Gasoline Leaks

In the midst of working on the 544, browse through Craigslist to find a 1967 122S for sale across the bridge in Marin posted earlier in the day. It looks to be in decent shape the only caveat is major engine issues being cited in the ad copy. After talking to the owner, head across the bridge to check it out before loosing the sun to the western horizon. At around 8:45pm, I am driving back across the bridge to San Francisco, the new owner of the 122. Overall in great shape except for the power plant as expected. The PO ignored a flickering oil light and turns out the engine is now seized solid. Three days later the is car towed to my garage and the search for a replacement B18/B20 starts as its pretty evident the existing engine has become a boat anchor.












Before running the 544's engine again, the carburetor fuel leaks will need to be addressed. Ordered a set of float chamber gaskets as when prefilling the bowls, the gasket on the front carb had come apart into several sections. On both carbs and float caps, the old gasket material was scrapped and cleaned off and the new gasket fitted in place then secured down. Refilled the mini gas tank and the engine was ready for restart. The engine cranked over for about 15 seconds then finally coughed to life. When I listen to the engine it sounds like it is running at 1500-1800rpm without activating the choke. While there is a tachometer in the cabin, it is not working or registering, will set up a spare Volvo/VDO 52mm small tach to actually see what speed the engine is turning at.







IMG_6015


The engine runs for about 30 seconds then I shut it down. Inspecting the carbs I see gas has leaked onto the float caps and the front carb is still dripping down onto the plate below and onto the exhaust flange. The gas line between the two carbs is removed and a spray of gas flies out as one side is removed and the bowls are depressurized. Two small hose clamps are installed onto that hose and tightened down as well as the hose clamp on the line coming from the fuel pump. The idle screws are backed off a half turn in order to drop the idle down. Restart the engine and while the idle is still high, there is less gas leaking onto the caps.

IMG_6024


The front carb still retains its drip but now its origin can be traced to the line going to the jet. Get out a shorty 7/16" wrench and tighten up the fuel line connector into the body of the fuel bowl. After tightening it about a half turn, it firms up but the drip is not vanquished. It looks like this line will need to be replaced out to fix the leak. Because of the leaking line, decide to pull the fuel hose out of the mini tank run the engine until the carbs go dry. As the engine runs on, there are a couple puffs out of the front carb causing the engine to stutter, then after a couple more it stumbles again and then stalls out as the loud "Bang!" of a backfire rings through the garage. Restart the engine and it runs for a little while longer before starting to struggle as if running on just one of the carbs then finally coughs and stalls out. With the cars empty there will not be a lingering gasoline odor around the car and it will be less of a mess when swapping out the gas line.





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Old 10-12-2020, 09:16 PM   #61
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Motor mount replacement started by removing the top nut and sliding under the car to do the same to the one retaining the mount to the subframe. Utilizing a floor jack and a piece of wood, the engine was lifted up at the front left corner. After raising the redblock up and separating the mount and bracket, wrestled the old mount out and the new mount set in its place. The engine was lowered back into place and then came across a small hurtle; the new motor did not have any fasteners included and the old mount utilized larger stud/threads. It took about 15 minutes to locate a suitable pair of fasteners to secure the new motor mount in place. Decided not to change out the passenger side mount as while it was old, it still was intact and not compromised.
Did you perhaps get some 122/1800/140 motor mounts? The PV mounts are shorter/thinner, about like a hockey puck, and have the larger, fine threaded fasteners.

I had been running 164 mounts on mine because of the added HP, recently got a new set of 544 mounts (since the 164 hoist the engine up an inch and a half or so an very occasionally one of the bellhousing bolts touches the tunnel) - but they made my KGTrimning header touch the crossmember, and I didn't feel like messing with that clearance issue so I stuck the 164 mounts back in. If you want the 544 specific mounts I'd let you have them for the price of a flat rate box to ship them in and a cheap lunch while I drop them off at the post office.
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Old 10-13-2020, 07:28 AM   #62
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Did you perhaps get some 122/1800/140 motor mounts? The PV mounts are shorter/thinner, about like a hockey puck, and have the larger, fine threaded fasteners.
John, What is the overall thickness of the 544 mounts and the OD?
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Old 10-13-2020, 08:42 AM   #63
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1" thick, 2" diameter.

Unlike the 122/18000/140 mounts, they're not angled backward to push against the trans mount, just leaned in a bit toward each other.
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Old 10-13-2020, 12:11 PM   #64
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Did you perhaps get some 122/1800/140 motor mounts? The PV mounts are shorter/thinner, about like a hockey puck, and have the larger, fine threaded fasteners.

I had been running 164 mounts on mine because of the added HP, recently got a new set of 544 mounts (since the 164 hoist the engine up an inch and a half or so an very occasionally one of the bellhousing bolts touches the tunnel) - but they made my KGTrimning header touch the crossmember, and I didn't feel like messing with that clearance issue so I stuck the 164 mounts back in. If you want the 544 specific mounts I'd let you have them for the price of a flat rate box to ship them in and a cheap lunch while I drop them off at the post office.

Yes, I did install the later 1800/140 motor mounts into the 544, none of the usual suspects were carrying them when I made that parts order. In preparation for installing them, I didn't think to check the fasteners so had to spend the time to hunt them down.

Thank you for the offer on the 544 mounts I will get in touch with you about those.
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Old 10-14-2020, 06:07 AM   #65
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1" thick, 2" diameter.

Unlike the 122/18000/140 mounts, they're not angled backward to push against the trans mount, just leaned in a bit toward each other.
Thanks! I've lowered the engine in the race car and want to go a bit lower. These mounts should work perfect.
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Old 10-15-2020, 03:25 PM   #66
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Default Fuel Drip & First Road Trip

A few days later, dig out my box of spare SU carburetors and after assessing several candidates, locate a potential donor unit. This carb retains all of its pieces & parts and reverse that by loosen the line from the bottom of the fuel bowl. Undoing the nut, pull lightly on the line and it will not detach. After several unsuccessful attempts the main bolt holding the fuel bowl onto the carburetor is loosened and this separated off as a unit. The same procedure is performed on the front carb of the 544, removing the fuel bowl and line. When going to attach the new one, that is when a issue arises. The spare unit is a rear carb and the fuel bowl will not align correctly on the front one. Looking at the bowls for a little bit, make the educated guess they are the same except for an alignment disc. The discs are swapped out and the bowl is mounted to the carb body without any problem. Hopefully this will quell the fuel leak once and for all.










The bowl caps are reinstalled, the fuel lines reattached and all three hose clamps are tightened. Refill the mini fuel tank and nestle it into the cavity next to the radiator. On the carbs themselves, adjust the idle screws until the throttle position just stop moving. Hook up the battery, turn the ignition key and the engine turns over. Continue this for about 8-10 seconds before stopping to let the starter have a rest. Spray starting fluid into the carbs and resume cranking. The engine catches and runs for a second until the ether has been combusted away. Repeat this and after the second spray the engine starts, first a bit tentatively but almost immediately smooths out to a steady idle. Looking across the engine compartment, gasoline is dripping off the top of the front fuel bowl. Shut down the engine to investigate the source of the ongoing leak.



IMG_6315


The end of the fuel line going from the pump to the carb is wet as is the top of the fuel bowl along with the transfer hose from the front carb to the rear one. Remove the main hose to inspect the end and decide to remove about an inch of the line as it is looking a bit stressed. Reattach the main line and tighten all three hose clamps on the carbs. Spray some brake cleaner around the carb bowls and lower shield in order to disperse the leaked gasoline quicker. After letting it sit for a couple minutes, everything looks dry and restart the engine. The B18 runs smoothly and finally the carbs are leak free. Keeping it running for another minute and seeing the temp gauge start to register, it is time to take it for a test drive.

IMG_6316




Pressing on the gas pedal, the engine races a bit while placing the transmission into first gear momentarily and the 544 emerges through the garage door. There is a slight decline from the garage and as the 544 rolls down it I keep the clutch pedal depressed. Straightening out, I get out my phone to document the upcoming journey. Putting the car into first and letting the clutch out, the engine goes from a steady idle to snorting and hesitation as the output is transmitted through the gearbox and into the rear wheels. The cars does start to pick up a small bit of speed though the B18 continues to complaining about having to do this. Sitting in the drivers seat realize the unsteady 544 is sounding like an World War I biplane which has just taken a couple of hits. After about a tenth of a mile, make a u-turn and head back towards the garage, the engine still running rough and unsure. Go past the garage just a bit then put the car into reverse and while still not running smoothly the car backs into the garage entrance with no problem. Shut the car down and give it once over to see if any other fluids are leaking, which it is not.

IMG_6319

IMG_6322


Give the car a much needed bath with a pressure washer as I was only able to do the front end, hood and fenders when first acquiring the car almost two months ago. After letting the car sit and drip dry, take several pictures of the 544 now that it has been able to shed the dirt and dust on its exterior. Once finishing up documenting the car, it is time to venture onto the pavement for another excursion. Once again the car moved though seemingly under protest, but not as much as the first trip. During this run the take the car into second gear and up around 20 mph. Back the car into the garage and into its parking space in front of the 1967 122 awaiting an engine transplant.



IMG_6330


While putting my tools away, feel a sense of accomplishment the 544 has achieved the minimum requirements for a running car, it starts, drives and stops when I want it to. In having revived the car this far, I have also come to the conclusion my time is about done working on it. Want to turn my attention to the 122S as getting that back to operational and driving worthy status is where I plan on spending time and efforts on. The 544 was picked up as part of a catch and release program, a project rather than a keeper. Now its time to find its new home.








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