Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Discussion about Mercury Car restoration projects. This is not an all out engine section. Discuss whatever is of concern to your MEL car restoration project.
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Shelby#18
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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by Shelby#18 » Sun 23. Feb 2014, 20:42

Awesome! Keep it up. That Continental kit is just over the top.

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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by mercs4fun » Mon 24. Feb 2014, 01:38

Shelby#18, are we the only two users on this forum? If so that is kind of sad. Oh well, I will keep the updates coming, but if no one reads them I am not so sure about the future.

Yesterday I disassembled my engine block. The engine was running nicely when I bought the car, but had oil leaks here and there. From experience I have learned that even if an engine runs good it can be pretty worn inside. When I lifted off the cylinder heads I could see that the cylinders had little wear and I started hoping that would be the same for the rest of the internal parts. Unfortunately that was not the case. The crank seems to be good, but the rest is so and so. Lets take a look at the pictures :shock:
feb23.jpg
The 430 spread out on my garage floor.
feb23_3.jpg
Hydraulic lifters that looks like this is not promising for the condition of the cam shaft. :(
feb23_2.jpg
Sure enough, most of the lobes were worn, some more than others and a couple of them to the point where they did not give much lift at all.
feb23_1.jpg
The cylinder block and crank looks to be in very good condition. Also I think it is unusual to open up an old engine that is this clean inside.

I will have to buy a new cam shaft/lifters and otherwise it will just get new rings and bearings. And of course a new oil pump and timing kit :)
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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by Shelby#18 » Mon 24. Feb 2014, 14:52

Don't worry mercs4fun, folks do read these posts. There are many visitors that are not registered. If you look at the hits on my two restorations you can see that the Colony Park itself is near to 6,000 with only 100+ posts. Just give it some time and you'll see a few of the regulars show up.

Could you please take some photos of the Pistons themselves. There is quite a nice thread on the step downs. Here is the link: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=67
Perhaps if you could get some photos of the part numbers also. Are you going to replace them?

All the best...
Rick

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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by Theo » Tue 25. Feb 2014, 17:51

What a great thread. Enjoyed it a lot. I remain curious for more stuff like that.
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The Engine

Post by mercs4fun » Wed 26. Feb 2014, 02:20

Rick, here is a picture of one of the pistons. From what I can see these are identical to those you pulled out of your wagon?
feb25 piston.jpg
Otherwise there is mostly kind of boring work going on in my garage now as I am just cleaning dirty, greasy or rusty parts.

I have cleaned and stored away some internal engine parts that didn't need work, like the rocker arms, rods and pistons and the crank.
feb24.jpg
Here is the rocker arm mechanism, one has been disassembled, cleaned and inspected before it was put back together again with a special protective engine lubricant.

The engine block and cylinder heads are at the machine shop where everything will be cleaned in an acid bath. The block will be honed and decked. The cylinder heads needed some work as well, and will get new valve guides put in and all the valve seats done. I am also going to put in the larger 58 intake valves as my engine builder likes them better. I had a set of NOS 58 valves here so it is good to find some use for them. Then the heads will be decked and the manifold side resurfaced as I hate leaking exhaust manifolds. The engine builder also wanted me to find a 4 bbl intake, but that is easier said than done her in Norway. Most of all I wish I could afford a Super Marauder set up for this car, but that is so out of the range right now. Regarding the worn out cam shaft, I found a NOS cam shaft on eBay for $149, so I decided to go for it and hopefully it is on its way to Norway right now. I don't know if a NOS cam shaft is the best choice today, but it did work pretty good back in 1960 so I guess it will do fine today as well. I am not going to race this car anyway.
feb23_5.jpg
That's all for now. Hopefully something more interesting will happen soon.

BTW, I am thinking about the color for the car all the time. What about this one?
9227595021_00ca22b459_b.jpg
Gry
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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by Theo » Sat 1. Mar 2014, 15:01

Gry, you're lucky to find the original domed pistons in your engine. These are almost impossible to get unless you order custom forged pistons. If by any chance they are O.K., put a set of new rings on and reuse them. Nice Cadillac BTW , although it's not exactly the color I favor.
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A little of this and a little of that.

Post by mercs4fun » Sun 2. Mar 2014, 02:35

I am spending more time in my garage than normal as the weather is just not usable for outdoor activities. The good thing is that I get a lot of dirty boring work done. Parts like this A/C pump needs to be cleaned thoroughly before they can be painted and some of this 50+ year old dirt is pretty stubborn.
acpump.jpg
Now that the frame is out for sand blasting I have a little more space around me so I spent some time cleaning my garage and to look over parts to find out what to use and if something needs to be replaced. Fortunately I have a lot of extra parts on my garage loft from a couple of 60 Mercurys I have parted out through the years, so when I found that the radiator frame I originally planned to use was no good it was just a short walk up on my loft to find a good one. Actually restoring a rare car like the 59 or 60 Mercury can get very pretty hard and way too expensive if you have to buy parts as you restore the car, so a good parts car (or two) is the way to go.
rad support1.jpg
I don't know if the radiator support usually is a problem on the 59 and 60 Mercurys, but both on the 59 I restored and on this one they were rusted out from the inside and had to be replaced.

I mentioned that I really wanted a 4 bbl intake for my engine for a friend of mine who is restoring a 58 Mercury Turnpike Cruiser, and he said he might have one and promised me to take a look for it in his storage building this weekend. Yesterday he showed up with this gold painted intake in the trunk of his car. So it turned out that one of the items I thought would be very hard to find wasn't that hard after all.
intake.jpg
Sweet looking perfect condition 58/59 430 4 bbl intake.

The transmission

I had 3 different transmission to choose from. One I knew had a problem with the reverse (slipped) and one that came out of the convertible that I had not driven much but that worked fine 12 years ago, and one from a low miles car that I had not driven at all. Usually I would rebuild the transmission when I restore a car, but for economical reasons I decided to go for the one from the convertible and open it for an inspection and if everything looked good, I would just replace the selector shaft seal and O-ring and the front and rear seals. The first indication of something bad going on in a transmission is the smell of the oil and what you find in the bottom of the oil pan. On this one the oil still had a normal smell and I did not find much dirt or debris in the pan at all. When I remove the oil filter I also noticed that the transmission had been worked on previously, so I assume it has been rebuilt at some point.
tranny1.jpg
Inside of the transmission with the oil filter removed.
tranny2.jpg
Here are the internal parts I need to remove to get access to the shifter selector seals out of the way. I know a lot of people dislike to work on the automatic transmissions, but this operation is pretty much a straight forward job as long as the transmission is out of the car and it takes about an hour or so.
tranny3.jpg
The transmission is back together with the new seals. I painted the oil pan flat silver grey before I put it back on and also cleaned the housing with a wire brush. As you see I prefer to keep the transmission natural cast iron and aluminum just like the factory did.
garage mars1.jpg
Finally here is a picture of my garage showing how it looks right now.
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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by LandCruiser » Mon 3. Mar 2014, 00:04

Perfect ! i would like to have a garage like yours. wonderful story. keep us updated.

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Power brake booster

Post by mercs4fun » Tue 4. Mar 2014, 01:16

Landcruiser, thank you for your comment. It is nice to see that there are people out there appreciating my posts. Regarding the garage, as you can see it is not one of those fancy buildings with posters and all kind of decoration on the walls, it's just a nice place to work and just what I need and want :)

Today I want to post a couple of pictures of my brake booster(s). I had a couple of them, but none of them were working. I also had a NOS one for years, but stupid as I am I sold it to a guy in Sweden that desperately needed one thinking I would always be able to find another NOS for sale. Well, guess what, I didn't, and now I have to deal with what I got and try to build a functional unit out of the two.
mars03_1.jpg
Power brake booster before tearing apart.
mars03_2.jpg
No wonder this unit didn't work as it should as it was full of old brake fluid and dirt. The other one was really hard to take apart as everything was rusty and stuck inside and outside. The good thing is that after examining all the internal parts I can't see why I should not be able to build one good unit out of what I have here.
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Shelby#18
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Re: Building a 1960 Mercury Park Lane convertible

Post by Shelby#18 » Tue 4. Mar 2014, 19:53

I hope that booster rebuild works for you. I went through four to get a good one for my '59 Lincoln.

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