Meet Gertrude: the Newest Morris Mopar, 1968!

cantflip

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As hinted, I now can thank my Lord it came to pass. Today, we purchased a 1968 Chrysler Newport convertible! It drove after the seller got her off his buddy's trailer, but RAN horribly! Since the man had warned me about this symptom and possible cause, I took it all in good cheer, already knowing what I would do, and what that in turn would do.

View attachment 487301 Gertrude, drivers side profile-in front of Mansionem Mauritius. This car has ALL her original major parts, excepting the vinyl top. The new one is boxed up in the trunk. This weekend, Deo volente, we WILL get her covered properly. The motor drives the frame up and down just right! Nice to have such in working order. Courtesy lights in back seat all work too, as do the door pin switches!! Such makes prepping her for full Family Duty easier.


View attachment 487302 Yonder carburetor came within a few nanometers of DEALBREAKING, despite prior warning about it. I remain AMAZED the old fool who sold me this thing didn't have the sense to TRY A DIFFERENT CARB, but also am VERY GRATEFUL he didn't! For had he done so, he would have SAS* KEPT this car. He admitted to me he still wanted it somewhat. Well, he got to wipe our meager savings out and take it home to his Desert Cactus Paradise near Mexico.

View attachment 487303
The battery got a nicely refurbished, primered pan(from Mathilda) , new marine terminals and a brand new OEM battery bracket. Any of you see something WRONG in this pic? Look CLOSE at stuff.... NOW do you see anything WRONG with that battery or circuit leads?

The passenger compartment functions quite well, despite severe deterioration of the rear seat. Excepting the fuel gauge, very instrument in the instrument cluster works! I guess I'll leave the shitty old ammeter be for now, given that, though I WILL install my vital stats gauges as I had with old Tilly, as I hate relying on idiot lights to tell me that I just slagged my motor. Better to have QUANTITIES with which to assess Quality!
View attachment 487425
Even the lighter is original! Could Gertrude be a ...... Survivor?

View attachment 487304

*Sure As Shit
Congrats and nice find!

The thing that jumped out at me was the dark color of the fuel in that filter... you may want to drop/clean the tank before allowing a chance for the working carburetor to become fouled by whatever slips through the filter. I'd replace the rubber fuel hose with something ethanol rated at the same time JIC.

I've not done tops from that era, but have done newer ones... In my experience, do your research on procedure, test fit without removing any material, look for trouble spots, be extra attentive that all of the stuff is there, is straight and is in working order before starting to actually install or trim any material. If you decide to DIY, or to help in the debate... compare the cost of the top to the price of an installed top and decide if you can live with the possibility of a total loss if you make a mistake. I usually find that I'd rather roll the dice on my abilities. One more thing... give yourself time... I know she's your only transportation now.
 

Gerald Morris

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Congrats and nice find!

The thing that jumped out at me was the dark color of the fuel in that filter... you may want to drop/clean the tank before allowing a chance for the working carburetor to become fouled by whatever slips through the filter. I'd replace the rubber fuel hose with something ethanol rated at the same time JIC.
....
One more thing... give yourself time... I know she's your only transportation now.

THANK YOU for confirming my own suspicions regarding what surely is the original gas tank! Wife and I already discussed taking relatively shiny new tank of Mathilda for Gertrude. I already ordered a new filler tube grommet from Inline Tube, enabling us to use more than the bottom 5 gallons capacity.

The crap may well already have infiltrated that Stromberg I fear, though it was already showing symptoms of some moonshine related deterioration. I failed the Emissions test by an order of magnitude yestermorn, which surprised nobody there, as the thing had been a true "barn find" with rat-shit on the intake manifold and stuck around the distributor to prove it.

IMG_20210927_115652400
RATSHIT.jpg

Had to mask up for THAT yesterday too! Vacuum cleaner, gloves, wire brush and acetone all deployed to rid that 383 of ANY chance of rodent excrement from entering the crank case!
 

MetalManiacAZ

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While you're doing all that work, you might want to go ahead and replace the valley pan/intake manifold gasket. I had an "oh shit" moment when I first got Betty White. I degreased and hosed off the engine from an oil leak at the firewall side of the manifold. I changed the oil a couple days later to find water in the oil. It didn't smell like coolant so I pulled the manifold only to find a 3" hole in the valley pan! It was original to the car. No problems since.
 

Gerald Morris

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While you're doing all that work, you might want to go ahead and replace the valley pan/intake manifold gasket. I had an "oh shit" moment when I first got Betty White. I degreased and hosed off the engine from an oil leak at the firewall side of the manifold. I changed the oil a couple days later to find water in the oil. It didn't smell like coolant so I pulled the manifold only to find a 3" hole in the valley pan! It was original to the car. No problems since.

Good idea! I may well pull the valley pan off while changing from a 2-bbl to 4-bbl manifold anyway. Yes, rat piss can corrode aluminum. Definitely worth a look.

DAMN ALL FLIPPERS! Discovered the CHEAP REMAN alternator was a SQUAREBACK, with the 5/16" retainer bolt threads at the bottom STRIPPED. thus assuring poor charging. So I cannibalized another Mathilda component, the shitty Duralast 60A alt, which at least IS a roundback, and works.
 

cbarge

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Right! Will get a new one. They're cheap.
Of you are going that route may as well block the exhaust crossover ports and use an electric choke on the 4bbl carb.
Both of these are done that way and have no fuel percolation issues in hot weather.
The electric choke works perfect in cold weather in single digit temps. Cold start and warm ups no different compared to stock thermal chokes.
FB_IMG_1629949235325.jpg
 

patrick66

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The 1967 Belvedere I wagon I had from 1991 - 2000 was an Export car. The fields in my broadcast sheet were printed in RED and not black, and specified "EXPORT" on two places. It had the same oval tag on the radiator support. However, my car really did get exported to a funeral car conversion company in Belgium.
 

ayilar

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my car really did get exported to a funeral car conversion company in Belgium.
Brussels, right? Interesting, I thought most funeral cars there were full-size Chevys.
 

patrick66

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Brussels, right? Interesting, I thought most funeral cars there were full-size Chevys.

A lot were. Not all. Mine was one of three identical six-passenger 225/3 cars shipped to Belgium for conversion to funeral cars. No body alterations were made, but the rear seat was folded down and a roller platform was installed. European hearses are interesting in that they have four stanchions on the roof for flowers and a center-mounted bar with a cross on it. Also, many have an ornamental light on the "D"-pillar. The interior is basically unchanged, though. I need to see where I have pics of the car, as all are actual photos and not a digital product. I have the original BE plates, as well as my USAEUR registration plates. My German neighbors always wondered why I was driving a Leichenwagen (hearse); though when I got the car, all of the hearse-specific items were not present. It was just a large American station wagon, to me.

Gerald, sorry to hijack your post!
 

Gerald Morris

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Of you are going that route may as well block the exhaust crossover ports and use an electric choke on the 4bbl carb.
Both of these are done that way and have no fuel percolation issues in hot weather.
The electric choke works perfect in cold weather in single digit temps. Cold start and warm ups no different compared to stock thermal chokes.
View attachment 488340

I've GOT an Edelbrock 1405, and was thinking strongly on rebuilding it, then putti9ng the manual choke through. I rigged the old Stromberg WWC for manual choking to good effect on Mathilda. I like manual chokes. Big 10-4 on blocking that damned exhaust crossover! Thing serves little purpose in Arizona unless one is in the mountains. The spring is missing on this one. I have the spring from the older one, but removed it from the manifold just so I could more easily leave the exhaust OPEN. Boiling the petrol in my carb never has appealed to me.
 

Gerald Morris

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A lot were. Not all. Mine was one of three identical six-passenger 225/3 cars shipped to Belgium for conversion to funeral cars. No body alterations were made, but the rear seat was folded down and a roller platform was installed. European hearses are interesting in that they have four stanchions on the roof for flowers and a center-mounted bar with a cross on it. Also, many have an ornamental light on the "D"-pillar. The interior is basically unchanged, though. I need to see where I have pics of the car, as all are actual photos and not a digital product. I have the original BE plates, as well as my USAEUR registration plates. My German neighbors always wondered why I was driving a Leichenwagen (hearse); though when I got the car, all of the hearse-specific items were not present. It was just a large American station wagon, to me.

Gerald, sorry to hijack your post!
Its cool bro! Find me an Imperial flower-getter. OR, find me a 66 station wagon in drivable shape to trade for Gertrude. While we dig all the "Cool Car" points, a station wagon would be the ULTIMATE Family Ride!
 

patrick66

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There was a '66 Imperial flower car in western Oklahoma for sale, several years ago. Never heard if it sold or not.
 

Gerald Morris

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There was a '66 Imperial flower car in western Oklahoma for sale, several years ago. Never heard if it sold or not.

Find it, quietly exterminate the wrongdoers who withhold this treasure from me, bring it hither, and ye shall be rewarded.
 

Gerald Morris

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Happy tidings! Today I tuned Gertrude past the Emissions test, with "Flying colors" as the saying goes. To achieve this, I installed the distributor built for Mathilda by the redoubtable Halifaxhops, re-gapped it to peg the dwell on 30 degrees, then after reading the 1968 Plymouth FSM for the Fury, dialed back the timing from the 12.5 degrees BTC I WRONGLY ASSUMED to be valid for a 1968 383 to ~9 degrees. The 68 FSM actually specifies 7.5 degrees BTC for motors with the CAP, though I removed the broken distributor vacuum control valve, as all it contributed to the system was a whistling leak. Still, by retarding the timing a bit, I kept a good smooth idle, yet got some acceleration without backfiring. I hope to further retard timing to spec, once I get a carb that will support it.
upload_2021-10-1_0-15-38.png

Then, the fuel filter had to be replaced. The flipper had provided a new one, which the debris from the rusting, filthy gas tank had already clogged after 4 days use. I popped a WIX see-through in, and hope to get at least a week from this one on the basis that the worst of the debris already got caught. I'm probably a fool optimist about that. I DO plan to switch out that tank with Mathilda's shiny, clean, NEW tank which has been scrupulously kept so these 5 years.

I then showered the Stromberg WWC liberally with Berryman's B-12 Chemtool (which I once got as a nickname do to my adolescent chemical pursuits) until the exhaust again blew clean at fast idle ~ 1000 rpm. The gas tank was filled to ~ 8-9 gallons with good Chevron and Shell premium, the latter from Mathilda's still partly filled tank. Thus far, the filter still looks clean....

Finally, I replaced some VERY OLD sparkplugs! The flipper told me that this car had sat for 11-12 years. I now believe that to be about HALF the actual time this barn find sat! The spark plugs turned out to be old school Champion J-14Y plugs!!! Wish I could find reliable data on WHEN they went from the J-14Y to the modern J-14YC! THAT would help me ascertain WHEN the car had last been driven.
OLD-J14Ys-removed-09-30-21-then-boxed.jpg

It just so happened, I had a NOS box of 10 of these, dated 1974, which furnished 9 shiny, clean replacements for the RUSTED BUT OTHERWISE IMMACULATELY CLEAN old plugs which were in the engine! This car indeed had been WELL KEPT, while it was driven anyway....
old-plug-close-up.jpg

No pitting, very little fouling. Others had NONE! Still haven't used or leaked a drop of motor oil. Yes, we're blessed here.
 

halifaxhops

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Hey if you need another vac advance pm me I will send one out. Your in box is full.
 
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