Getting the motor ready to test fire required finding top dead center on the #1 cylinder with compression and installing the new rebuilt distributor with new points, rotor, condenser, cap and plug wires so that the rotor points to the #1 plug on the cap. I installed a rebuild AFB carb and hooked up the fuel from the tank to the pump to the carb and rigged up a temp start and ignition switch. A little started fluid to get things going and turning it over to make sure that the fuel pressure come up and it did kind of fire. I check the timing with the timing light and found that the coil and coil to cap wire were bad. Replaced the coil and coil wire and tested the timing again, Timing light flashes on the coil wire and on every spark plug lead. I installed a new set of Delco R45S plugs and sort of fired it up.
Not exactly the sound I was expecting but it did fire all of the cylinders a couple of revolutions but it doesn’t idle or even run at any fixed RPM for long so…………
I pulled the plugs. They did not look good, black oil deposits on the tips. While the plugs were out I ran a compression check again on all cylinders, a little variation from 225 to 175 lbs but not bad enough that it should not run so time to dig in a little deeper.
The 425 Buick Nailhead from the 1966 Buick Electra 225 was from a car I purchased in St. Louis for a thousand buck and moved to Vancouver WA The motor ran and the transmission worked before I pulled the engine out
Back to basic checks for the Nailhead. It has been over 20 years since the engine last ran and some of that was in the Arizona heat so a basic check of the internals of the engine are in order. Before I tried to start is I had oiled the combustion chambers with Marvel Mystery oil and turned the engine over by hand with no problems. I had done all of the basic of starting an old motor but the oily plug tips need more investigation.
Cylinder leak down testing
Although the compression checked sort of OK a better test is a leak down test so that is up next. Pulled all of the plugs, blocked open the throttle and opened up the valve covers to get a view of what was going on and pulled the dip stick so I could listen while checking for leaks.