my favorite drink is synthetic oil


1966 Chrysler Newport Project

original advertisement 

You gotta love ads of the 1960s. Apparently, when one buys a Chrysler Newport, one is on one's way up the social ladder. Plus, they make it in colors that match your lovely and impractical dress. Which, coincidentally, is the color of my car, new for 1966.

In April of 2009, the car took two big steps forward... rather, I did, um, about the car. You know what I mean. These:

1) Over the past couple of days, I pulled the gunked-up old heads off the 383 block, determined to rebuild the stock block if necessary rather than go crazy with a new, bigger big-block. Turns out it's unnecessary, because the short-block, at least, was rebuilt as advertised, and here's the proof:

Note the ".030" on the piston crown (meaning it's been bored 30 thousands of an inch oversize and had its pistons replaced) and the cross-hatching in the cylinder bore: This is an engine that just needs some cleaning up and it'll be ready to rock! The black guck is just carbon on the piston; I'll carefully remove as much as I can and maybe run some alcohol injection to finish cleaning up the pistons, but it should burn off over time because it won't be getting the too-rich fueling from a carb anymore now that it'll be running fuel injection.

2) Mike and I drove the Saab to Kansas City today to pick up new shoes for the Newport, a set of American Racing Torq Thrust II 17" x 7" wheels shod in brand-new rubber for the price of just the tires, basically. This photo gives an idea of how they'll look in the front wheel-well - I think they're pretty snazzy, though the hubcap on the stock wheel behind looks a bit silly!

For comparison, here's the stock wheel and tire:

I think they look pretty snazzy! Next up: Exhaust work.