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Next Project - 1970 Oldsmobile W-31

This is a discussion on Next Project - 1970 Oldsmobile W-31 within the Classic Muscle forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; I was able to make it out in the garage yesterday to clean up and paint the starter and new ...

  1. #241
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    I was able to make it out in the garage yesterday to clean up and paint the starter and new drive shaft yoke. I assembled the drive shaft tonight and have it ready to go back in the car. I thought about buying a new starter, but this one worked fine, the contacts are good, and as the car was not equipped with headers it hasn't suffered as much heat soak as most other starters do on muscle cars.









  2. #242
    ʢ ൧ ൨ ൩ ൪ ൫ ൬ ൭ ൮Ր Ց Ւ Փ Smittro's Avatar
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    IIRC, that's the 10mt starter there are 2 different style field cases for those and a number of different noses.

    The field case like yours and the other style is a full can type no tapered end.

    I'd say 90% of the 200+ starters in this style I've rebuild, I was able to reuse the original armiture.

    Even the field bars are removeable so the field coils can be repaired (rewraped)..

    The brush wear indicates to me that the starter is'nt that old as that's pretty much what new ones look like.

    Just be weary if you ever need to replace it.

    The armitures were never picked up by any american companies so it's a 100% guarantee that IF it's got a new armiture it's chinese.

    The chinese 10mt arms are known to be bad right out of the box and the good ones NEVER last.

    In short, save the original arm.

    You can lathe out a lot of material from the commutator on those (usa) armitures before needing to replace it, just remove some of the mica from between the bars and you're good to go.

    The cap bushing is paper thin new and really the only thing besides the leather com washer, and the "V" spring for the brushes, that goes bad sometimes, a reputable rebuild shop with have replacements.

    I've rebuilt those after they lay in a mud puddle for who knows how long and was still able to machine and reuse the American armiture..

    Just my .02
    Last edited by Smittro; 01-16-2012 at 03:27 AM.

  3. #243
    Former Mopar Man 2002ssslp's Avatar
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    This is old school stuff I remember from my youth. I can't wait to see the finished product. Please send more pictures when you can.

  4. #244
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    Thanks Steven for the info. The starter is certainly a heavy duty piece of equipment on these cars. That's why I elected to refurbish the original in lieu of buying an offshore replacement.

  5. #245
    ʢ ൧ ൨ ൩ ൪ ൫ ൬ ൭ ൮Ր Ց Ւ Փ Smittro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pajeff02 View Post
    Thanks Steven for the info. The starter is certainly a heavy duty piece of equipment on these cars. That's why I elected to refurbish the original in lieu of buying an offshore replacement.
    No prob..

    The only other little trick I know is the 2 (+) pig tail tabs where they connect to the (+) brushes with the screw should be bent over some if they're not already.

    Reason:

    Sometimes after market brushes are a little longer than the OEM brushes causeing a little extra swing in the brush pivots when the armiture is in place.

    This can cause the (+) tabs to come into contact with the field case and short the fields.

    If this happens durring start up the contact plate inside the solenoid can/will weld across the curcuit and hose the solenoid and possibly burn the leads off the field coil or ruin the fields themselves.

    Then you get to take the starter off and do it all over again..
    Last edited by Smittro; 01-16-2012 at 08:45 PM.

  6. #246
    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Wow, where did this thread come from? W31's are cool cars Jeff. Guess you are aware of their history, definately worth a ground up resto. Neat find.

  7. #247
    None Shall Pass Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    Wow, where did this thread come from? W31's are cool cars Jeff. Guess you are aware of their history, definately worth a ground up resto. Neat find.
    You really need to browse the site more FBJ. Jeff's been working on this one for a while.

  8. #248
    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knight View Post
    You really need to browse the site more FBJ. Jeff's been working on this one for a while.
    Sorry, I'm bad for that.

  9. #249
    None Shall Pass Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebirdjones View Post
    Sorry, I'm bad for that.
    Just razzing you. I find myself doing the same thing sometimes.

    I personally can't wait to see this car in person. Knowing Jeff's attention to detail, it should be better than when it rolled off the showroom floor.

  10. #250
    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    You can razz me all you want, seems to be the thing to do lately

    Common Jeff, more pics,,,get busy

  11. #251
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    Work has been kicking my ass for the last week or so, plus I managed to come down with a pretty decent head cold. More to come...

  12. #252
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    Bolted in the starter and installed the driveshaft today -- progress continues. I dragged the radiator support out of storage to begin work on it. Looks like just the area under the battery needs a little attention. The rest of it should be a fairly straighforward clean up and re-paint, may not even have to take the whole thing down to bare metal.



















    I also dropped the exhaust manifolds through the blast cabinet. Unfortunately, this revealed that the driver side manifold is probably shot -- small cracks at the top of the two inside bolt holes, a large crack on the front tab and quite a bad warp.






  13. #253
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    Wow Jeff, I was just browsing through and what a great build! DAMMIT! This is absolutely Frickin beautiful! I am so jazzed that you are doing this cause it gives me the incentive to start my little Buick. This W31 is absolutely AWESOME!!!!
    Hey, have you thought about coming to Cali for a vacation? You are more than welcome to stay at my place! One of the top ten safest cities in the USA here in Simi Valley, 25 miles from the beach, 45 miles from winter skiing and lots of trails and mountains, also Disneyland about 65 miles away, and Universal Studios 30 miles away, I will even build you your own room off of the garage! Hey! and while you are here, you could give me a hand on the old Buick!
    Seriously, your build is the "cats meow".

  14. #254
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    Thank you. I need to get going on this again soon -- too many other projects this summer so far.

    We were in Monterey back in '99. So far, that has been my only trip to California. When we go west, we generally end up either in Arizona or Alaska. The Monterey area was incredible and we have always planned on going back to Cali at some point. Favorite part was a trip down the coastal highway that we took one day -- the ocean views were amazing.

  15. #255
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    Finally got around to working on the Olds again. Started by tearing down the radiator support and taking it to a local monument company for sandblasting. I have a pressure pot style blaster, but it always freezes up in the winter and gives me fits, even when I drain my compressor and such. Sometimes it is just easier to farm stuff like this out and for $80 I was quite pleased with the results.

















    I also ran the exhaust manifolds through my blast cabinet and gave them a couple of coats of Eastwood's high temp paint. My passenger side manifold was broken when we bought the car. Luckily, one of my friends is an Olds hoarder and he had a spare. He also sold me the riser tube and heat exhaust shroud for the hot air feed to the air cleaner. The shroud is in rough shape, but as they don't re-pop them I can make it work. I had to get out the heat wrench to remove the exhaust downpipe that had been cut off to remove the manifold from whatever car it originally came from.








    During the time I was playing with the manifolds, I also disassembled the hood latch and sandblasted all the components.




    Of course, the battery had rotted out the radiator support (you can see the rot prior to blasting in the above pictures) so I cut out all the bad metal and fabbed new pieces from 18 gauge sheet metal. There are three separate layers in one part and I'll have to make a new nut out of a piece of flat stock. Next time out to the garage I will final fit the new pieces and begin the process of welding them in place.









  16. #256
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    Good to see some progress.

  17. #257
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    Managed to get it all welded back together Friday and then finished it off last night. I used a little epoxy to smooth out some of the pinholes and such. As this area is essentially hidden, I wasn't too worried about making it perfect.








    These jigs work great for butt welds, although I did gap the one on the right a little tight and had to use a little force to remove it after tacking the panel in place. As this is a small panel with lots of bends around it, I didn't have to worry about heat warping things.














  18. #258
    Senior Member cpop98ws6's Avatar
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    Nice work Jeff

  19. #259
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    Agree.

  20. #260
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    Thanks. Just glad this car really doesn't need much metal work. I will probably swap out the trunk floor, but that's not too bad to do.

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