Janet's 1960 Nash

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My other car...
is a 48 Chevy


July 12, 2002

Brought the car home and laid all the parts out in the driveway. The car is complete, but really rough. What have I got myself into? :) Steve fixed the turn signal switch, and I took some fine steel wool and cleaned the back window. Hey, you gotta start somewhere.

The first issue that needs to be decided is, what do we do with the drivetrain? The seats are out of the car, but when I sat inside on a cushion, I was too short to push the clutch pedal all the way to the floor. (This is a small car, and I'm a short person, but the pedals are way up under the cowl.) We'll have to set the actual seat inside and try again, and if I'm too short, we'll need to do a conversion to a 4-cylinder automatic.

Once we determine whether we have to do that conversion, we'll have to decide which 4-cylinder/RWD motor to put in it. That will probably also involve replacing the rear end, so we'll have to pick something that's either a). narrow enough or b). easily narrowed.

July 15, 2002

Two key things determined this past weekend. First, we put the seat back in and I can reach the pedals, which means we could leave the original motor and manual transmission in place. The car has a really unusual shifting setup - the shift lever sticks out of the dash (not on the column or in the floor) and the pattern is a backwards h - so it's going to be a trick to learn, but hell, guess that's why I've been practicing so hard on the motorcycle.

The second thing we learned is that the motor runs and sound really good. It's an Austin 1500, which is a British 4-cylinder - the cars were designed and built *for* American Motors, but built in England with English parts. The car came with really complete paperwork as far as what parts were purchased for it by previous owners, and someone spent a bundle rebuilding the motor in about 1988.

Next step was to take the master brake cylinder and master clutch cylinder out and try to make them work (they both work on a hydraulic "plunger" design principle, and both were stuck). I made two custom gaskets and the cylinders are ready to put back in now. We're bleeding the brakes tonight, on the theory that stopping is probably even more important than going at this point.