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Old 12-29-2007, 03:46 AM
Mr. Broke Mr. Broke is offline
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Starting Stored Car

I have a car that has not been started in fourteen years. It is a 1968 Ford Galaxie 500 convertible. I am looking for suggestions on the correct way to prepare the car for starting. The car was not properly prepared for storage. I will change all fluids, belts hoses, etc.
I need suggestions regarding how to prepare the motor for starting.

I will drain gas in the gas tank. Should I also replace the tank. I think the tank is about 3/4 full.
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Old 12-29-2007, 10:31 AM
danny danny is offline
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welcome to the forum.

sounds like a nice project. it looks like you're on the right track. i wouldn't replace the fuel tank unless it needed it. the first thing before trying to crank it over would to remove the spark plugs and squirt some penetrating oil into the cylinders and let it sit for a while.
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Old 12-29-2007, 01:05 PM
FFR428 FFR428 is offline
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What engine is in there? 390? Danny is right on. I've used marvel mystery oil and ATF in the past in the cyls. I'd also turn it over by hand with a breaker bar on the crank bolt after soaking the cyls for a few days. Other thoughts would be the valvetrain. Valves could be sticky or rusted. I'd remove the valve covers and oil the rockers a bit. Also tap the tops of the valve springs with a plastic mallet to help break loose things. This was you can see if the valves are opening and closing while turning over with the breaker bar. You can also inspect the valve seals. Those like to dry, crack and fall into the head drains when well aged. You might want to run a external gas supply from a jug. The gas tank and lines could be filled with rust, sediment all kinds of crap after 14 yrs. You can R&R the fuel system later and at least you know it's gettting a fresh fuel supply. Tranny fluid and filter. I'd make sure there is gear oil in the rear end pumpkin too. Double check your grounds and inspect wires. Carb might be suspect. But you can diagnose and see if it needs a kit. I'd plan on it or swap another good carb if you have one. But you never know. If it has hyd lifters they might be a bit sticky at first. If the engine looks pretty clean inside it should be ok. Just listen for the knocks and taps. Be sure you have good oil pressure, coolant temp, fuel pressure etc... and have at it.
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Old 12-30-2007, 12:50 AM
olddog olddog is offline
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Pull the distributor and run the oil pump with a drill, to get oil everywhere. This in addition to the replies above.

Find out which engine is in it first. If it would happen to be a rare FE, the engine could be worth $10K. If it is a rare engine, do not bother trying to start it. Pull it and have it rebuilt by a good shop. If it is important to save this engine, again pull it and have it rebuilt.

The valve stem seals are shot. The springs have been sitting in the same position and they are now junk. If a valve spring breaks, you will drop a valve into a piston and you could loose the entire engine. It may well start up and run, but until rebuilt it will not make the power it should. High revs will be risky with these springs. The carb should be rebuilt at a minumum. A gummed up carb could run it lean and toast a valve or piston.

Depend on what you want to do with the car. If you want to keep it a long time, rebuild it first. That's my advice.

PS
By rare FE I do not mean all FE engines are rare. A 427 side oiler is very rare and very valuable. The 428 is getting hard to find and highly desired. The 390 is fairly easy to find. Most are not interested in the 352 and 331. I do not think the 429 was out yet (not a FE this is 385 series), but might have been. The early 429 cobra jets are rare and valuable. And sense you never know what engine may have been swapped into an older car, a 351 cleveland 4V is also rare.

Last edited by olddog; 12-30-2007 at 01:33 AM. Reason: PS
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Old 12-30-2007, 01:40 AM
olddog olddog is offline
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Oh yea a 1968 engine likely needs leaded gasoline. It will need new stainless steel valves and hardened seats to run on modern gasoline or you will need to find lead substitute additive, if it can still be found.

With rusty rings and bad valve seals it will likely use enough oil that it won't be a problem. I wouldn't worry about this to start it, but would consider it for the long term.

Most engines in 68 had at least 10:1 compression and needs premium fuel. A high performance 11.5:1 compression would need octain boost added to todays 93 octane gas.

Last edited by olddog; 12-30-2007 at 01:47 AM.
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Old 12-30-2007, 09:17 AM
Mr. Broke Mr. Broke is offline
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Thanks to all who took the time to reply. You have given me some great information.

Regarding the engine, it is a 390 two barrel carb engine. My parents bought the car new and I drove it while in high school. So the car has been in my family since it was driven off of the lot.

The car has about 58,600 miles. It has always been garage kept. About a month ago I transported the car about 180 miles to my house. We wenched it onto the truck and later pushed it into my garage.

I pushed it out the other day and washed it with a lot of warm soapy water ... this really brought the paint out. The convertible top is also still like new.

The interior is still in great shape. I may replace the carpet. I think this car weighs about 3,960 pounds and does not have power brakes. I am thinking about changing out the front drum brakes and replace with disc front brakes. I will save all the parts so that the car could be put back to original.

Again, thanks to all who replied.
Mr. Broke (or will be!)
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Old 12-30-2007, 02:24 PM
olddog olddog is offline
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Mr soon will be broke:

FE engines (which a 390 is) have many tiny little details that you just have to know to build one. There are many good engine shops that have no FE experiance, who think they can build any engine and screw FE engines up all the time. If you go down the rebuild road, choose very wisely where you have work done. Choose a shop that specializes in FE engines and build bunches of them - not 2 or 3 a year. It depends on how dry the air was in the garage. With those low miles, bearings should still be good and the cylinder walls will have little wear, but what about rust? I would worry about the valve springs. I think if it were me, I would have the engine gone through. It should require very little machining and most parts should be reusable. At a minimum, I would pull the heads and have them upgraded and inspect the cylinders while it's appart. If there is no corrosion, the bottom end will likely be fine.

This car sounds like it is in excellent condition. I would think it could be restored with minimal work. Restore no more than is needed - origonal is better than restored to original condition. I would change nothing - not even the brakes. This may be a BJ auction car in the rough.

Here is a link to a top notch FE builder and all around great guy.
http://www.keithcraftmotorsports.com/

Last edited by olddog; 12-30-2007 at 02:35 PM.
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Old 12-30-2007, 04:33 PM
FFR428 FFR428 is offline
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With only 58k on the clock I'm sure the 390 is still in excellent shape. 68 full size with a 390 2v is a Y code in the vin number. Specs are 270hp @ 4400 rpm and 403tq @ 2600 rpms. Stock compression was 9.5:1 which is more than fine with pump 91-93. If the car is a weekend cruiser I'd not sweat the hardened valve seats. If this car will see traffic daily then yes I'd add the hardened seats. Follow the advice for starup precautions. Everyone has chipped in some really good info. Personally I think that 390 has a lot of life left in it as stock. Just some freshening here and there. Old dog brought up some very good points about keeping the car original. It's a true survivor at this point. And a valueable car at that. So if you do choose to upgrade things do keep all the original parts. Even the old tuneup parts you remove. Belts, hoses everything. They have value and can be used if the car was ever shown in a "survivor" class. If you need a good FE engine forum www.fordfe.com is excellent. That car will turn quite a few heads.
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Old 12-31-2007, 03:54 AM
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Daniel Wood Daniel Wood is offline
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All the above advice is good, but if I were you, I would buy this tool and use a drill to turn the oil pump. This will oil the entire engine. Just remove the distributor, insert tool and start spinning it with a drill and then slowly turn the bolt in the crankshaft clockwise with the spark plugs out.

Go to Summit Racing and put this number SUM-901011 in the keyword box, it only cost $13 and will save a lot of time.



Good luck!
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Old 01-01-2008, 12:50 PM
gearhead409 gearhead409 is offline
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don't forget to check all the wires under the hood for mice damage as we all know our little friends like to make nests under the hood.it was parked with 3/4 tank of gas? drain it and have it cleaned I would find a place to boil it this will get all the varnish out of the tank even if you just drain it you still will have varnish in the tank and when you put good gas in it it may desolve the varnish and plug up the filter and or carb. Also if it's got a autolite or ford carb on it they have an accelerator pump on the front of the carb keep an eye on it on first start up it could be shot as well and leak gas this could start a fire that a common thing with old fords
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