Monday, October 7, 2013

In the Shop - 1903 Toledo

 by Willy Vinton
© Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum

Our 1903 Toledo is a stunning car, and the restoration done on it by Horseless Carriage Restoration is one of the best you will see. One of several reasons why we want the Toledo's running condition to stay on par with its fancy appearance!

When we got ready to fire it up recently, however, we encountered a problem that I thought we had avoided: bad fuel.  Our normal procedure is to make sure that we drain all the fuel out of cars that have a copper fuel tank, in order to avoid corrosion problems. When we had trouble getting fresh fuel to reach the Toledo's carburetor, we wondered if there was some kind of obstruction, but had no idea what we would encounter. Once the fuel finally reached the carb and we tickled it, out came a very green solution. Definitely not something you would expect to see in a fuel system. Hmmmm.
We finally got the Toledo started and limped it around to the shop. Once we drained out all the fuel and found that there was still close to a quarter inch or so still hiding in the tank, we knew we had located the source of the problem. So, even if you're sure you drained the tank, MAKE SURE IT IS INDEED EMPTY!

To access and remove the fuel tank we had to first remove the Toledo's side baskets, top braces, and the seat assembly. Once removed we steamed it out and cleaned it so we could remove its drain system. Next we repaired the tank with a sump to ensure that all the fuel was indeed drained out, leaving none to sour and make a mess.

Next we put in new fuel shut-offs so we can remove the carb in the future should it become necessary. We then cleaned the carb out and installed a new drain valve.

fitting from tank

This is the fitting we removed from the tank. As you can see, it allowed a considerable amount of fuel to remain in the tank.

Once the repairs were completed, we put in some fresh fuel and the Toledo started and ran like a charm. We drove it around for a bit, then drained ALL of the gas out and put it back in place in the museum. Thank you to the docents that helped clean it up, as it sure flings oil and makes a mess when it runs! The Toledo is now sitting pretty for the winter, waiting for  you to come see it in the museum.

Coming to Fairbanks to see the Fountainhead Antique Auto Museum and other area attractions? Support the museum by staying at one of the Fountainhead Hotels. All guests receive half-price admission to the museum!

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