I'm new and joined because I recently picked up a 1960 Biscayne. Couple years back, I got interested in Old Chevys again. I bought my first car, an '88 Celebrity when I was only 13, had it for many years then sold it. I wanted to fill that void and found a very affordable '81 Malibu which I now daily drive. I had a little 2003 Suzuki too that I used as a winter car but when my parents split, Mom needed a car, so, I sold her the Suzuki. I thought a Caprice would be nice for winter, to drive around in a full size V8 rwd since I spent the past 10 years driving small front wheel drives. I went looking with the money from the Suzuki but ended up getting a Ford Police Interceptor. and it was a good car to me all winter.
I have always wanted a very classic Chevrolet like a Bel Air but the condition for the price of what is in my range has always kept me back. This year I thought I'd go for one and searched 1949 to 1960; since I could sell the Ford while it was still certified and use the money to take on a rough '50s project. Well I didn't think I would get a nice 60 or in the decent 'one colour' shape it's in either. It is also safety certified, on the road, was totally ready to go, just rough running. I drove out in the Ford to see it and wouldn't you know the guy always wanted an old cop car, worked out the values, did the trade, swapped my plates over and drove home in the Biscayne! Registered it that day which is a big hurdle already overcome, not having to get it inspected and stuff.
My first attention will be to the engine. There are 140K miles on this car and I am sure it is time to rebuild. I was hoping to work on it while keeping it mobile and driving just through this summer. I knew I'd didn't run on all six and thought I found the obvious reason when a removal of the pushrod cover and valve cover revealed a clip busted out from the hydraulic lifter and pushrod dislodged but replacing stuff and getting it all moving didn't help. A compression test I thought would show bad on that cylinder but surprising I have no compression on another so it's a 4-banger
I found a 235 for sale complete with all accessories and 3 spd from a '55 in too good a shape but of course it doesn't have the side mounts like mine. Been thinking to rebuild my original since the numbers on head and block both show June 1960 and I totally dig online sixes and 3ott. I want to pull my head and am curious if the head off a 1955 235 could work on the 1960 block, so I could drive this summer and rebuild the head on the 60, then do the block, or whole thing over the winter.
Anyway I will try not to ramble anymore on this post but look forward to figuring some interesting stuff about these cars!
Welcome to CT! Sounds like you've got a great car. Those old 235's are about indestructible.
I've owned 7 of them in my life. Here's a picture of the 235 that was in a very used Bel Air I bought for $90 in 1969, and drove for over a year like this. The previous owner had told me that he was driving down the road and heard a banging sound coming from the engine for awhile, but the sound eventually went away. (Yeah... when the head of the valve that had broken off finally punched it's way through the top of the piston!) Anyway, it did smoke real bad on hard accelleration, but being young and dumb I just drove it like this for over a year it till it died. Luckily it passed away in the driveway of our farm, and my dad just towed it down in the woods. I pulled the engine in 1996, pulled the head and found out what the problem was. I took this picture last summer.
1953 210 Convertible, 261 with dual Carter YF 966S carbs, P.S., Remote Bendix P.B. Booster... shade-tree restoration about done.
Thanks guys! I'm pretty stoked, got a new head gasket to get a look inside.
Going to pick up another running 235 tomorrow and planning to remove the head with carb, intake, exhaust manifolds etc. As much attached, swap it for mine, then move over the whole rocker assembly to match my block. And if there's no hole in the piston, fingers crossed (cool story & pick btw :)) hope it goes from sewing machine to all six.
After getting a taste of it before parking it, really want to daily drive it and my Dad is eyeing up that Malibu. I have too many cars, but no 50! That's a lot of 60 Chevys, just glad I got one and good to know there are parts, thanks! liking to hear about others '60 Chev too
Hope I get it running good too soon. Looks like I came to the right place to meet '60 (+4-door) owners I was able to cruise around a bit but it really needs work too. It rained a lot here and my trunk got full of water! Did a lot over the weekend tho and have lots of pics but uhm, I can't seem to get it to run now, haha
Anyway, got use of a small garage at g'ma's, plus was well fed! I pulled the head and seen the cylinder with 5 psi compression was due to a toasted valve. The guides are cracked on that one too. Put the head from a '55 235 on and felt quite accomplished that day. Not so much the next when seeing just how much it didn't want to work, intake stuck up way higher so manifold had to be changed and the rest of the night spent fighting with heavy manifolds that just did not want to line up, plus I lost my flash light - it fell into the engine bay leaving me to believe that there must be some kind of portal that enveloped it, or something even more uncanny..
My engine starts up with the replacement head. Compression is up from 90 lowest to 110 though highest is still only 120 psi, within 10 psi deviation across the bunch. I can keep the engine running and actually revving for a change but won't idle. I'm thinking massive intake manifold vacuum leak.. Exhaust is pouring out from the manifold to pipe joint despite it being tighter than it had been prior to taking apart. Dad says the flashlight when down the exhaust pipe, I think that's unbelievable but where is the flashlight still sounds so good revving a lot stronger with loud exhaust coming from that joint
Thanks, I'll probably refer to this and eventually go with that setup too
Found out that the head I put on is from a 50's truck, after getting stumped by a straight thread tube port for a mechanical temperature gauge vs the npt one for the electrical sender that came on the car. Truck could be the reason for the extra height of the intake. That held me back a bit and I didn't get to work on it all week, but today things went smooth and I got it to idle
I pulled the manifolds again, separated the intake from the exhaust and reinstalled this time a lot more informed with new gaskets and used the cherry picker as a third hand which really helped get everything all lines up. That 3pc. Gasket and bolting clamp setup was not as tricky this time.