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Starting on a '55 Plymouth Plaza Suburban

Discussion in 'Other classic cars' started by 71Charger_fan, Nov 26, 2016.

  1. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    Yesterday, I drove it out of the neighborhood to the gas station. I went over 25mph for the first time since I bought this thing. By the time I got it home, the right rear was smoking. So, I had those shoes adjusted too tight. This morning, I took just a hair of adjustment out of them and took it for another drive. All seems fine now. No more stink of burning friction material.
     
    Bearhawke and Fast Eddie like this.
  2. hemirunner426

    Level 2 Supporter

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    I hope you got it nailed.good perseverance.nice mopar.
     
  3. dana44

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    Good job! Sometimes new shoes will smoke because the surface is imperfect and the first couple times of driving, until the surface is heated and cooled, fitted to the drums, will smoke just a little bit. A slight loosening adjustment should help since they have been "seated" from its first drive and won't hurt a thing.
     
  4. saltydog

    saltydog Well-Known Member

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    Nice! Glad you get her going! Nice work!
     
  5. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    Words fail to capture the level of relief I felt when I could finally safely stop that thing.
     
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  6. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    I will never again do a brake job like this without plugging the MC and ensuring it holds pressure before plumbing it to the rest of the system.
     
  7. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    One of the few things the seller stated in their ad for this car was that the floors were good. Not sure their idea of good floors and mine are the same. At least for the time being, I'm just sealing them up with POR-15 and fiberglass.
    Plaza front passenger floor pan.jpg Plaza front passenger floor pan (3).jpg
     
  8. dana44

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    Since you are going to do that, go on the underside and prep and POR-15 there, too, hopefully that will help.
     
  9. hemirunner426

    Level 2 Supporter

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    You probably know this...Fiberglassing will make subsequent work on the area after a real bitch.Cleaning the resin and matt so you can get a good weld will be tedious.same thing for por-15.If you use heat to burn off the resin or por-15 after the fact,watch out for all the bad fumes..
     
  10. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    I catch what you're saying. Although @71Charger_fan may not have to worry too much about sheetmetal/welding work assuming his wagon's kept off the road during the winter. At least it's now safe.
     
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  11. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    Except for an occasional wash, this car will likely never get wet again. It's a car I want to improve a little, enjoy for a few years, then likely sell it along to someone else to enjoy. Fortunately, since I have Maryland "50 Year Historic" license plates and the car is over 60 years old, I never have to renew my registration. So, at least that's a small savings over the other six cars in the fleet.
     
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  12. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    The gas gauge isn't working. So, I pulled the sending unit and found the resistance was the same with the float up as with the float down. So, for the time being, I picked up an inexpensive gauge/sending unit and gauge pod to mount under the dash for the time being. I took the top off the OEM sender and took the aftermarket sender apart. I mounted the top of the OEM unit onto the aftermarket unit's guts.
    Plaza fuel sender.jpg Plaza fuel sender (7).jpg Plaza fuel sender (2).jpg Plaza fuel sender (8).jpg Plaza fuel sender (4).jpg Plaza fuel sender (6).jpg
     
  13. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    Another photo since the limit is six per post.
    Plaza fuel sender (5).jpg
     
  14. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    It took a few times putting the sender in and taking it out adjusting the length of the sender and the float arm, but I think I finally got it close enough. I took a quick trip to the gas station and was happy when the needle climbed up on full. The extra gauge is out of the way under the glove compartment over the hump. If I get ambitious, I might move it up into the gas gauge hole in the dash. I took the easy way out and wired the gauge light to the gauge power rather than screw around tapping into the light circuit. Unfortunately, my iPhone refused to focus on it when it was lit up.
    phpgnwLDoPM.jpg
     
  15. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    My lower tailgate has a lot of mud in it. I accidentally put a small dent in it while working on it and cracks spread. Yesterday, an NOS tailgate arrived from Bernbaum. It's in pretty good shape for over 60 years of shelf wear, just a couple of minor bends on the upper corners, some scratches from shipping, and some surface rust.
    Plaza tailgate.jpg Plaza tailgate (2).jpg Plaza tailgate (3).jpg Plaza tailgate (4).jpg Plaza tailgate (5).jpg Plaza tailgate (6).jpg
     
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  16. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    The car tracked straight on the road, but the steering wheel was off by about 45 degrees. Because there's a master spline, I couldn't just yank the wheel and re-clock that. So, the good folks at the Ford dealership just down the road were kind enough to throw it on the alignment rack and set toe/center the steering wheel.
    Plaza alignment rack resized.jpg
     
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  17. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    After previously being unable to get much of the old differential lube out because it was like tar, I crawled under there yesterday to try it again. Having gotten a small amount of new gear lube in and driving it around a bit, the new lube did mix with the tar-like crap that was in there and thinned it enough that most of it flowed out the drain plug. So, after it stopped draining, I put some new lube in while the drain plug was open and that pushed more of the old crud out. After buttoning it up with new lube, I'll put some more miles on it and change it again to try and get rid of the rest of the old nasty lube. While under the car, I went ahead and drained and refilled the manual transmission. That lube flowed out fine, but was well past when it should have been changed. I'll change the transmission oil again before winter to try and get rid of the remnants of the old lube that was in there.
     
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  18. saltydog

    saltydog Well-Known Member

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    Awesome Score on the tailgate! You just don't find that stuff very often.
     
  19. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    When I finally drove at night, I realized the right headlight pointed down at the street. Today, I pulled the HL bezel to adjust the HL and realized that some previous owner had broken an adjuster tab and the tab that serves as the third mount for the trim ring. So, I got to pull the HL bucket, drill out the rivet heads and reattach the tabs so that the HL could be adjusted.
    Plaza HL bucket (2).jpg Plaza HL bucket (5).jpg Plaza HL bucket (6).jpg Plaza HL bucket (3).jpg Plaza HL bucket (4).jpg
     
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  20. 71Charger_fan

    71Charger_fan Active Member

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    Today, I took the beast to a local car show and got a top 20 plaque. To be fair, there were only about 40 cars there, but given the state of my car's appearance, it was fun to win that.
    phpEftqzhAM.jpg php2RbAPdAM.jpg
     
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