Little Details, and Debugging the Overdrive

Little Details, and Debugging the Overdrive

I installed my new wiper blade refills and put the wipers on the car. Just in time too, because I needed them to pass the State’s vehicle safety inspection for my registration. I’m happy to say, the Ferrari passed with flying colors! I no longer have to sneak the car around avoiding New York roads in fear of getting caught without a inspection sticker!

I got some 1 inch clear vinyl hose to use as a road draft tube. The original hose was a ribbed plastic hose with an orange/cream color, but reproductions of this hose is about $95 bucks! I found my tubing at work, and paid nothing.

Here’s a picture of the correct tubing with the correct cheney clamp, but this was on a Concours restored car. It’s a part easily replaced with the right stuff, so for now, I’ll save my money!

My V-12 was made before emissions required Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PVC), so the crankcase, and all the fumes inside, vented right into the atmosphere. Unburned gasoline, oil vapor, and exhaust gases was part of this cocktail, and without these vent tubes, the crap would deposit all over the engine compartment. With some driving, maybe the vapor in the crankcase will color the clear hose to resemble the originals!

A major item on my list of things that needs to be sorted out, was the overdrive. I needed to take the center console out to check the circuits, but not before I removed one seat. Fixing this issue now is much easier than after a new interior is installed!

After carefully looking over the wiring diagram in the owner’s manual, and testing all the circuits in the chain, I narrowed down the problem to a relay located on the fuse panel. The transmission will not allow the electric overdrive to engage until fourth gear is selected. In fourth gear, a switch on the steering column operates the overdrive. I could hear the relay clicking, but power was not reaching the overdrive solenoid.

After taking some of the fuse panel apart to get at this relay, I finally got it out of the car. Once I pried the case apart, it became apparent why the relay wasn’t working. Water had obviously gotten into the housing, and corroded the contacts. I checked the electromagnet, and it was still working, but rust between the points of the relay was blocking the current. Coincidentally, I bought a file for ignition points at Hershey last week. Simple sandpaper would have worked fine, but the file made the contact point perfectly square. I think I got my $0.50 cent’s use out of that file!

After I got everything cleaned up, and reinstalled, I was now getting current to the solenoid, but it was intermittent. Running out of time today, I decided to continue trouble shooting next time.

I want to thank everyone who has sent their well wishes and shared their excitement of my first drive. It’s an exciting time, and I am touched by the enthusiasm, but I want to reassure everyone that this project, and website for that matter, is far from over! As you can see from this week’s installment, there will always be something to do!

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