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Old 12-07-2003, 11:08 PM
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Hello - I am member # 16,117

New member - saying hello. I've been viewing the forum the past few days and I really enjoy the high amount of information.

It was only a few weeks ago that I decided to dive into automobiles. Before then, I knew very little about how engines work. So...I started cramming. I bought a book called Auto Fundamentals and it explains just about everything conceivable in relation to automobiles. I've been reading so much that I'm about ready to put it down and get to work. When I do feel comfortable enough to actually start some hands-on, I plan on toying with a '72 Rally Nova.

Kind of wondering - what is the best way to learn about how cars work? Would it be through theory like I'm doing now or just good ole first hand experience? I don't plan on ditching the book but I'm wondering if I should try doing some simple things.

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Old 12-08-2003, 12:16 AM
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You need hands on experience. Nothing beats doing it firsthand. Pick a small project like a carb swap and maybe an intake swap and go from there. Researching online and reading books helps also.
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Old 12-08-2003, 11:27 AM
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^^^^^^^^^^^
What he said!
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Old 12-08-2003, 01:42 PM
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Welcome to the boards
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Old 12-08-2003, 03:21 PM
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I think I'm like #211 or something like that, don't remember,Jon would know, Hey Jon, what number am I?? Welcome aboard dude, now play nice!! What kind of tools do you have? Do you have any practical automotive experience at all?? Whats with this Nova, is it running, was it a good buy? How far do you want to go with this?


Todd


Rat Rods Rule!

Last edited by tm454; 12-16-2003 at 04:39 PM.
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Old 12-08-2003, 05:57 PM
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Heh,same here Jon. What number am I?
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Old 12-08-2003, 08:40 PM
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Quote:
Welcome aboard dude, now play nice!! What kind of tools do you have? Do you have any practical automotive experience at all?? Whats with this Nova, is it running, was it a good buy? How far do you want to go with this?
I have a basic socket wrench set I but I plan on buying some type of new automotive tool set.

I don't have any real automotive experience - when it comes to working under the hood. I am truly green ... so I'm somewhat hesitant to start fiddling with the engine parts. But this is something that I've really become fascinated with over the past few months (because I've been going to drag races). As far as I'm concerned, I'm in this for the long haul so I'm willing to learn it all. I eventually want to get to the point where I can build my own car - a 32 Ford perhaps?

The last time the Nova was driven was probably around 8 or 9 years ago... It's been motionless for so long that I'd be afraid to even try cranking it at this early stage. This was given to my mother (from my grandparents)...who in turn has told me that I can do whatever I want with it. It's been sitting in a basement collecting dust all of this time. For as old as it is, it's still in decent shape. The body is dent free and the interior is in almost excellent condition (the only thing that needs work is the front seat). I don't know about the engine until I decide to start tearing into it (which will be a slow process I'm sure).

EDIT: Oh, I also have a Hayne's Repair Manual for a Nova to help me through some things.

Last edited by ahuguley; 12-08-2003 at 08:53 PM.
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Old 12-09-2003, 08:19 AM
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An expanded Auto mechanics tool collection, 100 or more pieces, is probably a good idea. A service manual specifically for your year Nova too. Just because the engine sat for 8 or 9 years dosn't mean you can't run it. The gas tank needs cleaned out or replaced. The carb will need rebuilt or replaced. Your trans will probably leak but that just dried up seals, no biggie. The brakes will need to be gone over, hopefully the fluid is not crystallized in the wheel cylinders or master cylinder. Start by pulling the gas tank and bleeding the brakes of the old fluid, remove to top off the master cylinder first and get dot3 fluid to put in. Buy a good heavy duty pair of jack stand sets/4jack stands. And a 3 ton jack. Work from your service manual to remove the gas tank and the wheels and tires and get a vacuum brake bleeding pump to make draining the old brake fluid easier. How does this sound so far? Others may suggest a different way to start, its really up to you as to where you Begin. Good luck and have a good time with your New Hobby project! I had and after thought, www.chevytalk.com/ might just be helpful if you join in here too.




Todd




RAt Rods Rule!
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Old 12-09-2003, 03:40 PM
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Excellent tips tm454.

"Gas tank cleaned or changed".
Would it be easier to do one or the other? Is the tank just bolted together - so it can be opened up with relative ease?

"The carb will need rebuilt or replaced"
Noted. The repair manual I have (plus the Auto Fundamentals book) has detailed pictures and instructions in relation to the carburator. I'll be sure to check it out.

The brakes will need to be gone over, hopefully the fluid is not crystallized in the wheel cylinders or master cylinder.
Alrighty.

I appreciate the info. I can't wait to get started.
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Old 12-09-2003, 04:34 PM
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If you go to your photo gallery I think it gives you your member # in the address link, I am # 10273, again I say, I think.

Cruise, you would be # 12247, but again, I am just guessing.

Last edited by Moby302; 12-09-2003 at 04:34 PM.
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Old 12-09-2003, 06:36 PM
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You don't say how old you are. If you are still in high school check into the Auto Mechanic class or if you have a community college near by check there. Both have beginner courses. Most let you bring your own car to work on.
Jack
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Old 12-09-2003, 09:40 PM
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I'm 24. Due to my job, I don't know if I would have the time to take some classes on the side. I might look into some kind of night class, though.
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Old 12-10-2003, 08:42 AM
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Just plan on nothing going relatively easily. Once the car is off the ground with the jack stands under each lower A arm and rear axle then proceed to taking the nuts off the bolts holding the gas tank straps on. I would suggest having the tank boiled, unless it is dry and no sign of rust rattling around in the tank, hopefully the gas was drained prior to storage otherwise you have to dispose of the old gas too. Before you drop the tank setup the jack under the gas tank, kind of at the center to balance it when dropping it. Don't forget, the gas line will have to be disconnected at the tank too. Are going to work in the basement or in a garage? What does your Haynes manual tell you about dropping the gas tank?


Todd


Rat Rods Rule!
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Old 12-10-2003, 10:10 AM
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Heh, I shouldn't have asked if it would be easy - since it doesn't bother me one way or another. Learning about it is all part of the fun...regardless of how tough the task will be. I say that *now* at least.

To be honest I haven't read up too much on the fuel tank YET.

The car is parked in my parents basement right now but I plan on pushing it outside whenever I need to. It's always nicer to work with natural light. My dad has offered to help out whenever needed. I think he's just as excited as I am to get the car running again.

Oh, and I did pick up a new tool set (96 piece) and some jack stands last night. Just checking out the Hayne's manual, it looks like I will need a few more specialized tools. I'll just buy those seperately.
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Old 12-11-2003, 02:10 AM
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Thumbs up

An expanded Auto mechanics tool collection, 100 or more pieces, is probably a good idea. A service manual specifically for your year Nova too. Just because the engine sat for 8 or 9 years dosn't mean you can't run it. The gas tank needs cleaned out or replaced.

Allen, First of all, welcome to our world. I think you are going to do just fine with your project because you have what it takes, WILL POWER AND A POSITIVE ATTITUDE. The fuel tank is absolutely the place to start because you need clean fuel to run the engine. BTW you did not mention whether or not the engine will turn freely. More of that in a moment. In the meantime, back to the tank. I had my tank cleaned out and relined about a year ago at a price that I thought was very reasonable ($100.). Call a radiator shop and ask them for their price in your area. Mine was ready the next day and looks just like new. YES! I said radiator shop, in case you are wondering why? > A cooling system needs a clean tank (radiator) to keep the engine running at the proper operating temperature. The fuel system needs a clean tank to insure the engine runs smoothly. They are boiled out using the same technique. The only difference is that the fuel tank is lined with a solution of some chemicals that are impervious to gasoline to protect against rust from moisture that sometimes collect in
the tank.

If the engine will turn, remove all the spark plugs and pour a small amount, about two ounces of a penetrating oil into each cylinder and let it remain until the next day to make sure that the rings are well lubricated. turn the engine slowly with a breaker and socket. Make several revolutions to free the rings and lubricate the cylinder walls. The oil has been in the bottom of the pan for several years as per your descriptions of the status of the vehicle. This is my very own recipe for cleaning the crankcase. I have done this numerous times and have had good results each time. The capacity of the crankcase is five quarts, so mix one gallon diesel and one quart automatic transmission fluid. After draining the oil from the pan and removing and draining the filter replace the old filter and pour the fluid mixture into the crankcase and crank the engine. Check for leaks the same as you normally would. Do not race the engine, just let it idle for about ten minutes. At this time it doesn't matter if it runs rough, your only concern is to clean the engine and loosen it up a bit. After all the years of inactivity the grime may be quite thick in the bottom of the pan. The diesel has oil in it and the trans fluid has cleaning agents plus oil so your engine is being lubricated during this time so it is not endangered. The next step is to drain the oil and remove the filter. Let it drain very well then install the new filter and fill er up and do whatever is next on your list. This would be a good time to do a tuneup. If you decide to drive it, at this point, I would not go more than aroun the block because of the tires which are probably dry rotted. If you haven't checked the brakes yet forget about driving arround the block. Good luck to you and may God bless your project.



Al

Last edited by Gr8 '48 bow tie; 12-11-2003 at 02:22 AM.
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