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Author Topic: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco  (Read 3439 times)

sqlbullet

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Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
« on: November 26, 2018, 11:44:28 am »
With the oldest man cub about to come home from his LDS mission it was time to take a look at the 93 Bronco and get it ready for him to roll round town.  Last summer the son-in-law was driving it and it had a cooling issue.  The thought was a leak in the radiator, and so that was the planned task for Saturday:  R&R the radiator and thermostat, replacing hoses, belts, water pump and fan clutch if needed.

I knew it couldn't wait any longer as during the summer we had just filled it up with water to get it home, so it had very little freeze protection.  And it has been getting cold.  I was a little worred I had waited too long and that I might have to deal with a freeze plug or two.

Pulled it into the back garage, opened the hood and pulled the radiator cap.  First surprise, it was full to the brim. So, no leak.  Drained the system, pulled the upper hose, the intake runners, thermostat housing and bench tested the thermostat.  It was marked 192° and was still not open at a full boil that read 205° on a digital thermometer.  So, the summer event was probably coolant escaping under extreme pressure due to the thermostat not working.  My day was getting better!  The upper hose showed evidence that it had leaked where it entered the thermostat housing, but the lower hose looked just fine.

We sourced a new thermostat, gasket and upper hose.  Cleaned up the housing and installed the new parts, refilling with concentrate mixed 60/40, and topping off with 50/50.  Started her up and burped the system for 20 minutes, then took it for a 20 minute shakedown drive.  Runs like a top!

I drove it to church yesterday.  Ran fine once again.  I plan to drive it once a week until he returns in a couple of weeks, then it is his problem!

All in all, a good day working on the car as both time and cost were less than expected.
Utah

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    luke213(adamsholsters)

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #1 on: November 26, 2018, 05:30:49 pm »
    It's always nice when it's an easy fix;)

    Luke
    MichiganI am the owner/proprietor of www.adamsholsters.com Custom holsters made for you. To contact me please use E-mail rather than Private Messages, [email protected]

    coelacanth

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #2 on: November 26, 2018, 06:22:04 pm »
    Agreed.  It can go the other way with frightening speed.  On one that old I'd probably check the heater core as well.  Sometimes you can leak a little bit there without really knowing where its going.   :hmm
    Arizona" A republic, if you can keep it."

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    sqlbullet

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #3 on: November 27, 2018, 10:20:56 am »
    Agreed.  It can go the other way with frightening speed.  On one that old I'd probably check the heater core as well.  Sometimes you can leak a little bit there without really knowing where its going.   :hmm

    Good advice.  I will keep an eye on it as I shake it down for the next few weeks, and mention it to my son as well when he takes it over.

    The next challenge is gonna be the 4WD.  It has a pushbutton 1356 t-case and it isn't shifting.  Probably either instrumentation telling the controller not to shift or a bad shift motor.  I have found a mechanical shift 1356 in the local classifieds for $125, and a complete rebuild kit including chain and pump is $250.  So, for $375 I could have a rebuilt mechanical shift case, or we can chase electrons for a couple of days.

    That will be the "get to know my son after two years" project for the week after Christmas!
    Utah

    Plebian

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #4 on: November 27, 2018, 01:59:46 pm »
    Good advice.  I will keep an eye on it as I shake it down for the next few weeks, and mention it to my son as well when he takes it over.

    The next challenge is gonna be the 4WD.  It has a pushbutton 1356 t-case and it isn't shifting.  Probably either instrumentation telling the controller not to shift or a bad shift motor.  I have found a mechanical shift 1356 in the local classifieds for $125, and a complete rebuild kit including chain and pump is $250.  So, for $375 I could have a rebuilt mechanical shift case, or we can chase electrons for a couple of days.

    That will be the "get to know my son after two years" project for the week after Christmas!

    Go mechanical every time IMO.

    The 1356 is supposed to be pretty stout in the torque rating as well. I believe that same T-case was slapped behind the 7.3 diesels.

    Is that model the 5.8 or the 5.0?
    Oklahoma"If all our problems are solved, we'll find new ones to replace them. If we can't find new ones, we'll make new ones."

    sqlbullet

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #5 on: November 27, 2018, 05:12:27 pm »
    This one is a 5.8.

    My second daughter has a 95 bronco with the 5.0.  And you can definitely tell a difference when you drive them.  Also at the gas pump.  I would like to drive a straight 6 300 CI motor that also was available in certain years of bronco.  From what I read you get 5.8 level low end grunt, and better economy than the 5.0 V-8.  They are rare though.

    I agree with you about mechanical.  And not just he t-case either.  When power windows go out, old style rollers go in.  I have been trying to find a manual roll solution to the tailgate glass, similar to the old Gran Torino wagons.

    OTOH, if in this case it is a simple, minimal cost, electrical fix, I would rather keep my $400 in my pocket.  So, I will probably grab the t-case in the paper to have on hand since it is pretty cheap for a core.  But, we will also probably at least diagnose the issue with the push button and then evaluate a fix.
    Utah

    coelacanth

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #6 on: November 27, 2018, 11:37:28 pm »
    Those old 300 c.i. inline sixes were freaking bulletproof.  I drove one for a while years ago and couldn't find a single bad thing to say about it.  The only reason I got rid of it was I ended up driving in rush hour traffic in Phoenix and the truck had a manual transmission and no air conditioning so getting stuck in traffic was no bueno. 
    Arizona" A republic, if you can keep it."

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    booksmart

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #7 on: November 28, 2018, 09:03:24 am »
    It's easier to survive a manual transmission than it is to survive no AC, south of the Manson-Nixon line...

    MTK20

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #8 on: November 28, 2018, 10:57:21 am »
    This one is a 5.8.

    My second daughter has a 95 bronco with the 5.0.  And you can definitely tell a difference when you drive them.  Also at the gas pump.  I would like to drive a straight 6 300 CI motor that also was available in certain years of bronco.  From what I read you get 5.8 level low end grunt, and better economy than the 5.0 V-8.  They are rare though.

    I agree with you about mechanical.  And not just he t-case either.  When power windows go out, old style rollers go in.  I have been trying to find a manual roll solution to the tailgate glass, similar to the old Gran Torino wagons.

    OTOH, if in this case it is a simple, minimal cost, electrical fix, I would rather keep my $400 in my pocket.  So, I will probably grab the t-case in the paper to have on hand since it is pretty cheap for a core.  But, we will also probably at least diagnose the issue with the push button and then evaluate a fix.

    Those old 300 c.i. inline sixes were freaking bulletproof.  I drove one for a while years ago and couldn't find a single bad thing to say about it.  The only reason I got rid of it was I ended up driving in rush hour traffic in Phoenix and the truck had a manual transmission and no air conditioning so getting stuck in traffic was no bueno. 

    Rare you say? My dad has a straight 6 300 CI in his Ford Bronco. We still have it.

    It's an automatic transmission though.
    Texas
    Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
    Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
    Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

    Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

    cpaspr

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #9 on: November 28, 2018, 03:58:04 pm »
    Maybe the Broncos with the 300ci straight sixes were rare.  I remember my dad had a 1972(?) Ford F100 with that engine and a 3-on-the-tree manual.  Purple.   :vomit (for the color, not the engine)  It seemed to be a fairly common option for the pickups.

    I only drove it a few times in the summer of '78, when I was home from college.  Most of my transporting before I got my first car in '79 was via 10-speed.
    Oregon

    LowKey

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #10 on: November 28, 2018, 11:51:35 pm »
    You guys have me thinking about a slant six in an old Plymouth Scamp I owned way back when...couldn't kill that engine if you tried. :cool

    cpaspr

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #11 on: November 29, 2018, 12:59:58 am »
    You guys have me thinking about a slant six in an old Plymouth Scamp I owned way back when...couldn't kill that engine if you tried. :cool

    Perhaps not, but if my memory serves me correctly those old slant sixes were a royal PITA to adjust the timing on or change the plugs.  The distributor and plugs were on the downslant side of the engine.  Couldn't see what you were doing worth beans. 

    I helped a friend swap engines one Saturday afternoon parked on the side of the street.  Took a bit, but we had the old one out and the new one in and running in just a few hours.  Gotta love engine hoists and the simple wiring harnesses and coolant hosed of those old engines.
    Oregon

    LowKey

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #12 on: November 29, 2018, 02:26:16 pm »
    Perhaps not, but if my memory serves me correctly those old slant sixes were a royal PITA to adjust the timing on or change the plugs.  The distributor and plugs were on the downslant side of the engine.  Couldn't see what you were doing worth beans. 

    I helped a friend swap engines one Saturday afternoon parked on the side of the street.  Took a bit, but we had the old one out and the new one in and running in just a few hours.  Gotta love engine hoists and the simple wiring harnesses and coolant hosed of those old engines.
    Oh yeah, you had to be good at working by touch.  Swapping out the mechanical fuel pump required you to sit on the ground along side the wheel, put one arm up and over the fender into the engine compartment, and the other arm up from underneath through the wheel well. :clap  :neener
    OTOH, they were damn near bulletproof and very tolerant of abuse.

    coelacanth

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #13 on: November 29, 2018, 07:06:41 pm »
    Agreed.  They were also nearly always housed in an engine compartment that allowed enough room to actually work on it - unlike most of today's offerings. 
    Arizona" A republic, if you can keep it."

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    MTK20

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #14 on: November 30, 2018, 12:22:28 am »
    Perhaps not, but if my memory serves me correctly those old slant sixes were a royal PITA to adjust the timing on or change the plugs.  The distributor and plugs were on the downslant side of the engine.  Couldn't see what you were doing worth beans. 

    I helped a friend swap engines one Saturday afternoon parked on the side of the street.  Took a bit, but we had the old one out and the new one in and running in just a few hours.  Gotta love engine hoists and the simple wiring harnesses and coolant hosed of those old engines.

    Wish I knew more about engines  :banghead . There's a whole mechanical world out there that I know nothing about, yet interests me. Oh well, it's probably a pipe dream. To my knowledge most vehicles won't run now days if they're 'computer' isn't also properly aligned with the engine too. Something that is mainly a proprietor affair.
    Texas
    Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
    Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
    Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

    Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

    sqlbullet

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #15 on: November 30, 2018, 10:07:26 am »
    To my knowledge most vehicles won't run now days if they're 'computer' isn't also properly aligned with the engine too. Something that is mainly a proprietor affair.

    It's one of those better/worse things.  Modern computer controlled fuel injected ICE vehicles attain a level of fuel efficiency and emission control that could not even be approached by carb engines.  And if you look at some of the mechanical emission control systems that were in place right before EFI took over, a computer based EFI is downright simple. Vacuum advance, points, needle valves and air pumps are all long gone and good riddance.

    But, you are not wrong that if the EFI computer goes south, that engine is not going to run.  And no amount of jury-rigging is going to bypass it either.
    Utah

    Mikee5star

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #16 on: November 30, 2018, 12:19:26 pm »
    Wish I knew more about engines  :banghead . There's a whole mechanical world out there that I know nothing about, yet interests me. Oh well, it's probably a pipe dream. To my knowledge most vehicles won't run now days if they're 'computer' isn't also properly aligned with the engine too. Something that is mainly a proprietor affair.

    First, there are lots of carbureted engines still in use today.  You will not get the fuel efficiency, and possible less power.  But they are still around and still viable if obsolescent.

    The brain box/computer is proprietary, but the code reading ports and scan tools are not.  Yes it is a fairly expensive tool, and the codes can have different meanings across brands.  But you can find codes on line, and the OBD II plugs that interface with your smart phone are coming down in price. 

    I find that sensors are the weak point in modern cars, much like solenoids in older cars.  Early EFI, late 80's-early 90's, had stand alone brain boxes that managed engines.  Throttle position sensors, tied to mass air sensors, and the injectors to keep the engine running at optimum fuel air mix as a very basic explanation.  Now they do that and lots more to make cars lighter, safer, faster, and arguably easier to work on.

    It's one of those better/worse things.  Modern computer controlled fuel injected ICE vehicles attain a level of fuel efficiency and emission control that could not even be approached by carb engines.  And if you look at some of the mechanical emission control systems that were in place right before EFI took over, a computer based EFI is downright simple. Vacuum advance, points, needle valves and air pumps are all long gone and good riddance.

    But, you are not wrong that if the EFI computer goes south, that engine is not going to run.  And no amount of jury-rigging is going to bypass it either.

    But it is check the codes and change modules/sensors/components.  Not cheaper, but simpler.  You just throw parts at it until it works.  If you ever have to chase vacuum leaks :banghead.  I thought I hated vehicle wiring issues until I tried to find a leak in the vacuum advance, where the timing changed randomly.  That leak was related to bumps. 
    Alaska

    booksmart

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #17 on: November 30, 2018, 01:36:07 pm »
    Sounds like the vacuum pump issue we had in our VW... you pressed on the gas, and said goodbye to heat & AC...  we even wrote a poem about it...

    As we drive
    285
    Our hands frozen to the wheel
    We accelerate
    resigned to our fate
    for we have no heat
    to warm our feet

    There was more, but we lost the napkin we wrote it on...

    sqlbullet

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #18 on: November 30, 2018, 01:53:44 pm »
    Ahh, yes.  Vacuum leaks.  The fifth gen bronco's still use vacuum for the HVAC systems.  And as older cars, they don't have the best vacuum integrity.  Floor it and all the air comes out the dash vents, no matter what the settings are. :o
    Utah

    coelacanth

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #19 on: November 30, 2018, 08:47:17 pm »
    Actual honest-to-God automotive diagnosticians are a rare breed - and worth every penny they charge you.  If you don't believe it, total up your repair bill after you've finished " . . . throwing parts at it until it works.".   The problem with that approach is you still don't understand what the problem was to begin with after you're finished spending all that money.  Yes, it works - sort of - but its not ideal. 

    I'm fortunate to have one of those guys with white in his beard nearby that has forgotten more about automotive diagnostics and repairs than most "ASE Certified Technicians" will ever know.  His son and daughter are on the front line of his day to day business so with any luck I'll still have a good place to go when he finally retires. 
    Arizona" A republic, if you can keep it."

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    Plebian

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #20 on: December 01, 2018, 02:57:58 pm »
    I will take electric control over vacuum all day everyday.

    I really like the 90s era fuel injection setup on Ford V8s. It was dead simple, and they were really easy to tune/hack.
    Oklahoma"If all our problems are solved, we'll find new ones to replace them. If we can't find new ones, we'll make new ones."

    Mikee5star

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    Re: Played Mechanic on Saturday on the Bronco
    « Reply #21 on: December 01, 2018, 03:52:41 pm »
    I will take electric control over vacuum all day everyday.

    I really like the 90s era fuel injection setup on Ford V8s. It was dead simple, and they were really easy to tune/hack.

    Oh hell yes.

    My main experience with Fords fuel injection in that era was on the 300 6, and it flat out sucked.  Worse mileage and power vs my '78 carberated version.  That said it was easy to work on, and did not fail.  Then in the mid-90's Dad and I went diesel, and I am just now getting back to gas.  The technology has changed.  My last gas vehicle is a '87 Toyota with a 22RE.  Before that  a '82 S-10 sport. 
    Alaska

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