1963 Corvette

Update your progress on your various car projects.

Moderators: Basement Paul, MostMint, Fred32v, ttamrettus, wxo

User avatar
Fred32v
Posts: 1352
Joined: Thu Jul 21, 2005 10:31 am
Location: Munson, OH. retired

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby Fred32v » Thu Jan 06, 2011 8:40 pm

Sure sounds like fun to me. I can hardly wait for the "first start" video. :wink:
Fred32v
GMC Canyon Crew Cab Short Box 4x4 V6!

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Sun Feb 06, 2011 10:22 am

Been getting all the parts painted before assembly.


Image

Image

User avatar
Maverick
Posts: 1710
Joined: Sun Apr 26, 2009 6:29 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby Maverick » Sun Feb 06, 2011 1:09 pm

Lookin' GOOD!!
Maverick

User avatar
oldvettedad
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:00 pm
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby oldvettedad » Mon Feb 21, 2011 10:28 am

I've never pulled an engine from a car with a manual trans. What the usual way to do this? Pull the trans out, and then leave the bellhousing/clutch attached to the block and pull it out?

-Dave

The easiest way is to remove engine and tranny as one unit. You will need a floor jack to support the back of the tranny as you lift the combo and the tranny moves away from the crossmember. You also should use an engine leveler so you can easily tilt it as it comes out. If you are worried about close spaces you can remove the fan (although you shouldn't have to do that). I always pull the distributor first just to insure it can't hit the firewall if I screw up. You will need to have the car on jack stands to leave enough room to easily get the floor jack under and to give more "tilt" room. Taking the tranny first can be done, but its a pain in the neck because everything is so crowded under there, especially if you have full exhaust. Actually, one of the things that is most annoying which ever way you do it is the way the shifter is mounted. It would be easier if it mounted directly to the trans. Any way, good luck. Its more difficult putting it back in most times.

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Mon Mar 28, 2011 11:04 am

I finally got the shortblock assembled this weekend. I had it together two weeks ago, but on the last (!!) piston, i managed to knick the rod journal on the crank, which caused a little burr that started eating my bearing after a few rotations by hand. Thankfully, I had found it when I was going back to check clearances. I was a bit miffed, and let it sit. In the mean time, I found I had the wrong oil pan and the cam gear bolts I had bought were 12-point. I hate 12-point fasteners. Another trip to summit would be in order.

So I ended up taking it all back apart, took the crank to Michael's and he re-polished the journals for me. I picked it up Friday afternoon, went to Summit, exchanged my oil pan and cam bolts while also picking up a replacement bearing, rings, and a couple tapered-bore ring compressors (4.030 & 4.155). On the same piston/rod with the bad bearing, the one oil ring had apparently slipped out from under my old ring compressor and bent it a little bit. I had noticed an oil ring like that when I tore the 406 down a while back, hence the new ring compressors. The tapered-bore style is *much* easier to use.

The new oil pan came unpainted, so I got that primered and painted up yesterday and am just waiting for everything to fully cure before I install it on the engine. Once the pan and timing cover are on, I can rotate it right-side up and install the top end and valvetrain. I'll get them installed and hopefully finish it off by the weekend.

The Bair's show is in mid-May and the goal is drive the car up there with Dad. I'll try to post a few pics soon.

-Dave

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Tue Apr 26, 2011 10:43 am

So I started pulling the engine out of the Corvette this weekend. After a weather forecast calling for rain all weekend, I decided it would be a good time to work in the garage. VeeDub came over to help out for a while, and as luck would have it, Saturday was real nice, so I actually rolled the car outside to work in the sunlight.

Most of the stuff has been pretty straightforward. I was planning to pull the engine/trans out as a unit, since that's what had been suggested to be in a couple internet posts. This is proving to be more work than I thought, as it appears I'm going to need to remove the Hurst shifter. I had removed only the shift lever, hoping the trans would drop down enough to clear the floor opening, but the shifter mechanism hits the crossmember before the stub (where shift handle mounts) clears the opening. And when the Corvette shop rebuild the trans a couple years back, they re-installed the mechanism with standard bolts, replacing the allen-head-hex bolts that were in there. Those allen heads would make getting the bolts out much easier. I think I'm gonna haveto buy a sacrificial wrench or two and customize them.

Once the shifter is off, the only remaining bolts are the engine mounts. The nice thing is that since that car was just put together about 10-12 years ago, everything comes apart easily. Some things are just difficult to get at.

Also in the works are a new set of front springs, and a power steering conversion. There's no way I'm gonna be done by Carlisle, though. :-(

pics to come soon.

-Dave

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Thu May 19, 2011 3:16 am

First, some pictures..

New engine going together.
ImageImageImageImage


Here are the matching numbers from the original engine + trans.
ImageImage

Here's the before + removal pics..

ImageImageImageImage

The old engine sitting on a cradle:
Image

So, getting the engine out was kind of a pain in the ass. Even though I had removed the shift lever, we couldn't get the trans to drop down low enough, even after removing the trans mount, for the stub of the shifter to clear the floor. We ended up separating the trans from the engine while I was under car and then pulling the engine out. It was not a process I wanted to do in reverse when it goes back together.

After getting everything apart, it was time to start cleaning up and transferring parts. I got the exhaust manifolds, all 4 of them, sandblasted at Newbury Sandblasting and them spray painted them with some VHT cast iron gray. Why 4 manifolds? I was going to use the larger 2 1/2" units that I got from BasementPaul, until I realized they won't bolt up to my current exhaust. There just isn't any money to replace the exhaust right now, so I'll have to choke it with the little ones. Maybe next summer I'll get the bigger exhaust pipes and install the bigger manifolds.

Image



The short-style water pump cleaned up nicely, with just a little touch-up paint. The crank pulley didn't line up with the water pump pulley, so I ended up using a couple washers between the crank pulley and the balancer to space it out. I'm not real thrilled about this, but hopefully it will work fine.
ImageImage


I picked up a new Edelbrock 600 cfm carb. They seem to get to get good reviews from street guys, they don't spill fuel all over the place when making tuning changes, and they also happen to look a lot like a Carter AFB, which would be correct for a '63 340hp motor. I've never had one of these before, so we'll see how it works out. I was tempted to get one of the Summit brand carbs, which seems to be an updated Holley 4010, but wanted to go with something more well known.

It was mentioned, maybe by OldVetteDad, the importance of having one of those engine tilting mechanisms for your engine hoist. This could not be more true. When we re-installed the engine, it went in as a single unit with the trans attached. It took 3 people, but it went it in much easier than when it came out in multiple pieces. Getting that little stub on the shifter to clear the floor opening is the tricky part, and that tilting unit makes a difference here. Fun fact: I can't remove the driveshaft from the vehicle without removing the trans.

Getting some help from Chris, and my dad in his usual supervisory mode. :-) Fatica was there too.

ImageImage


The new engine is in!
ImageImage


Hood clearance will require a very short filter, even though this is just a regular Performer (vortec) intake.
Image



It's kinda interesting seeing where all the parts of my good ol' American car are made.. Pistons from India, Heads from Mexico, Rocker Arms & Oil Dipstick/Tube from Canada, clutch from Brazil...

-Dave

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Thu May 19, 2011 11:41 pm

Update..

There's nothing that cements in your mind how to do a job than doing it twice. After getting the motor in last night, today I realized that something wasn't right with the clutch, with the clutch fork and throwout bearing. Fortunately, I hadn't gotten too much other stuff bolted in when I found it. Had to pull the engine and trans back out, remove trans and bellhousing, found the throwout bearing in 3 pieces. I don't know how that happened. None of the parts stores carried throw-out bearings, so it was a trip to Summit.

Got back, got the new TO bearing in, got bellhousing and trans bolted back up, and got the engine and trans back into the car. We did with only two people this time, as Fatica wasn't available. But knowing what we had to do from last night's experience made it easier.

Onward we go..

-Dave

User avatar
oldvettedad
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:00 pm
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby oldvettedad » Fri May 20, 2011 9:19 am

"Measure twice, cut once" or "measure twice, cut once...get a new piece and start over" . The latter is usually my style. I understand and commiserate with you on doing it twice. The hard work is done, the fun is almost here 8) .
Looks like a real nice job. The Edelbrock carbs are the same as Carter AFB, and i think they make one that is the same as the BFB. Yours is an AFB. They work well. If you ever need a real AFB I have about 4 of them, needing rebuilds, I used to buy everything I could find on Ebay for a 409. I hope you have many happy hours in the Vette. Do younhave to fight your Dad for driving time?
Back when i was writing about taking the engine and tranny out I probably forgot to mention that first I took out all the shifter linkage and mounts. I had the stock shifter, no Hurst, so nothing was bolted to the tranny, just to the mont which in turn bolted to the crossmember. I also probably didn't highlight two other points. You have to get the car up on stands as high as you can to allow enough space to get the proper angle. Then, with a tilter, you need to make sure you have enough "head room" since the hoist will have to lift higher. If you are in a relatively low ceiling garage, you probably can't get it high enough.
Anyway, if its any consolation, the job is no fun and I don't plan to ever do it again.

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Fri May 20, 2011 12:01 pm

oldvettedad wrote:"Measure twice, cut once" or "measure twice, cut once...get a new piece and start over" . The latter is usually my style. I understand and commiserate with you on doing it twice. The hard work is done, the fun is almost here 8) .
Looks like a real nice job. The Edelbrock carbs are the same as Carter AFB, and i think they make one that is the same as the BFB. Yours is an AFB. They work well. If you ever need a real AFB I have about 4 of them, needing rebuilds, I used to buy everything I could find on Ebay for a 409. I hope you have many happy hours in the Vette. Do younhave to fight your Dad for driving time?
Back when i was writing about taking the engine and tranny out I probably forgot to mention that first I took out all the shifter linkage and mounts. I had the stock shifter, no Hurst, so nothing was bolted to the tranny, just to the mont which in turn bolted to the crossmember. I also probably didn't highlight two other points. You have to get the car up on stands as high as you can to allow enough space to get the proper angle. Then, with a tilter, you need to make sure you have enough "head room" since the hoist will have to lift higher. If you are in a relatively low ceiling garage, you probably can't get it high enough.
Anyway, if its any consolation, the job is no fun and I don't plan to ever do it again.


Measure twice, cut once, get a new piece and start over sounds like my style as well! Thanks for the compliment on the job as well as the AFB offer. Fortunately, I don't have to fight Dad too much for drive time. He's pretty generous and let's me drive it pretty much whenever I want. He rarely drives it, possibly as he's waiting for the power steering upgrade. (soon Dad, I promise!)

As for the shifter, I assume anyone doing it with a stock shifter had to be removing the whole thing. I did the shifter upgrade in this car 5-6 years ago and it wasn't something I wanted to wrestle with again, if possible. With the removable stick on the Hurst, I figured I could get away doing it this way. It can be done, but its a very precise sort of dance at the end, getting the tilt. It's easy enough with 3 people, but can be done by 2. If I were to do it again with no shifter, it would probably feel real easy.

It looks like I'm going to miss my May 21 deadline for the Bair's show, which is a real bummer since I'm so close. I might've made it had the engine not needed to come back out. The only real PITA at this point, I think, is the rear u-joint. There's a heavy brace that goes from the frame to the front of the pumpkin. If I remove that, it seems access to the rear u-joint would be easier. Not sure which would take less time though.

I can't wait to hear this thing run!

-Dave

User avatar
oldvettedad
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:00 pm
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby oldvettedad » Fri May 20, 2011 10:24 pm

The piece you are describing at the front of the differential is the front mounting bracket. As you know the rear is held in basically with 3 bolts. Two bolts that hold the diff mounting crossmember in and the one bolt at the front of the bracket you describe.

Image

Thats apicture of the bracket.
It should be ok if you remove that, but I might want to support the fron of the differential anyway. Can you get up in there with a socket on an extension? I think thats how I got to the u bolts, get one, turn the driveshaft and get the next. Putting them back is tough, as can be the front bracket too, but it should be ok to remove it. The front bolt needs to be torqued to around 55 ft/lbs when you put it back. The 2 bolts that hold the bracket to the diff can be a problem too, its a tight fit.

User avatar
oldvettedad
Posts: 168
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:00 pm
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby oldvettedad » Fri May 20, 2011 10:27 pm

One last thing. That front bolt is actually a combination of a rubber cushion and steel insert and washers. make sure you get it back in the same way it came out.

Image

This is what all the pieces look like.

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Tue May 31, 2011 10:56 am

So, progress has been a little slower than I'd like, but at this point I'm very close to being able to start it up.

Rear u-joint didnt turn out to be so bad once I figured out to move the tire back and forth to twist the pinion, giving me almost a 1/4 turn at a time. Front u-joint, you just gotta sorta bear-hug around around the crossmember and its not terrible to get at.

At this point, I just need to get the radiator/fan/shroud back in, get the plugs/wires/coil installed and I think it'll be ready for a fireup! Then I need to finish the trim plate around the shifter, and put the hood back on. I suspect the starter needs to be shimmed too.

-Dave

User avatar
TireSmoker
Site Admin
Posts: 2039
Joined: Sun Jul 17, 2005 1:45 pm
Location: hunting for 11s
Contact:

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby TireSmoker » Sun Jun 12, 2011 2:29 pm

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5jVQaizZMI8[/youtube]

I still have minor stuff to work out yet (vacuum advance, idle, mixture screws, etc), but it runs! It really sounds sweet in person, too.

User avatar
Maverick
Posts: 1710
Joined: Sun Apr 26, 2009 6:29 pm
Location: Raleigh, NC

Re: 1963 Corvette

Postby Maverick » Sun Jun 12, 2011 7:42 pm

Sounds good!! Looking forward to the video of the first drive.
Maverick


Return to “Projects”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest