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Old 12-04-2012, 12:13 PM
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Default Sterling #130 (aka American V8 ~ Chapter 2)

Hello all! I'm back! (again)
Many of you may remember my car from EuroNova:
Euro-Nova - View topic - American V8

In July 2011 when I sold my house, I literally wrapped up my Sterling and put it onto a 26' car trailer and stuffed it into a 35'x15'x15' storage unit with 95% of my worldly possessions (the other 5% was graciously allowed into my then-fiance/now-wife's townhouse).

In June 2012 we finally found and bought our "dream house" with an attached 3.5 car finished garage and a detached 30'x40' shop. The shop is currently "cold storage" and is scheduled to get finished (electrical, heat, AC, insulation, sheetrock, paint, trim) in Summer 2013...at least that's the current plan. Since I have a heated and insulated and well-lit attached garage though, I told the wife that the Sterling gets to use the 3rd stall and then I will have no excuses for not working on it over the winter. Well, except for work, vacations, snow removal, and the neverending Honey-Do list. Anyways...now the story can continue!



We had a RARE nice December day of 55 degrees yesterday, so I left work early and took advantage of the good weather to pull the trailer with the Sterling on it out of the Shop and up to the 3rd garage stall. After replacing the now-deformed plastic-wheeled casters on the cradle with new steel-wheeled ones, I attached some 2"x9"x14' solid-maple ramps to the end of the trailer deck, mounted the new electric winch for "controlled descent", and pulled the car to the ramps with a manual come-along. Once the car was on the ramps, gravity did the pulling - all I had to do was steer the wheels and let out cable on the electric winch.









Now let the fun commence!
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:16 PM
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A little background of my car follows. I won't recap all of the 20+ pages from the Euro-Nova site though, details will have to be found there (see link above).

My car is the 1975 Sterling in Minnesota, USA with the Buick 215 aluminum V8, IRS and custom jack-shaft system in it. I bought it off of Flea-bay in a moment of stupidity back in April 2006. Since then I've rebuilt the engine from the long block out, rebuilt the jackshaft system, rebuilt both axles, rebuilt the entire cooling system (about 3 times), brakes, pulled and crated the windshield and dropped the floorpans. I've also rebuilt the canopy hinges, modified the front hood & hinges & latches, narrowed some Japanese-OEM seats, reinforced & smoothed the dashboard, and rebuilt the headlight buckets.

A little background on what's unique, namely the engine and Jackshaft system. I've been told (and have evidence to support it) that this car was raced with the V8 in the SCCA in California. I bought it from a guy in Maryland but the car had a Virginia title and California plates...go figure.

The jackshaft system was pretty worn out so I rebuilt it with new bearings, gears, shafts and installed chain tensioners. I also planed all the seal surfaces, jeweled the cover with a custom Sterling logo covering a timing inspection hole and upgraded the distributor to HEI. The new jackshaft is a 5/8" diameter keyed, hardened shaft to power an AC pump and alternator without flexing. The old jackshaft powered a water pump instead of AC, but now that job is being handled by a race-car intended electric water pump - custom mounts and fittings of course.

When I packed it away in July 2011, I was just beginning on the electrical system - from scratch, no harness to start with. After that it'll be some final bodywork, paint and reassembly. Nothing much, right?

Last edited by nbb350; 12-04-2012 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 12-04-2012, 06:33 PM
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Always wondered what happened to this car. I was following your discovery and engine rebuild lo those many years ago...good to see it back
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Old 12-06-2012, 02:57 PM
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Nice to see you at it again.

Great space - digging the detached shop. If you want some ideas on how to finish it dig around The Garage Journal Board - Powered by vBulletin ... actually don't because you will want to do sooo much more to the space and it will take up more time.
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Old 12-05-2013, 03:39 PM
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Happy Birthday to my car! It's now been ignored in it's new home for an entire year.
Haven't worked on the car at all. Not. One. Damn. Bit.
Been busy with home improvements, remodeling and landscaping...
Maybe this winter? Sigh...
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Old 12-05-2013, 04:09 PM
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Life happens. Good to see you on the boards again, though!
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:22 PM
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nbb350; I tried your link for your thread, something-404, page not there. Did I miss something? The Buick 215/rebuild is of prime enjoyment as I have 2 on hand along w/4.0 from a land(range Rover?)
that I'm sure will fit in my Cimbria SS just fine. Got an old in-line 4 spd T/A to use. How do I get to your thread please?

Hoping you get to your Sterling soon & your rebuild continues!! Those honey-do lists can be killers.Rick
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Old 12-07-2013, 09:31 AM
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Here's the thread, Rick: American V8

The Euro-Nova boards had recently been revamped, so most of the links had changed.
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Old 12-07-2013, 08:37 PM
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Thank You Sir. This build is very cool.
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Old 04-02-2014, 04:36 PM
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Four months of -20F weather has finally passed and last weekend I figured I'd take the brief break in the inclement weather (6"-10" forecasted for this weekend ) to at least THINK about my Sterling. My garage may be heated and insulated - but not well enough to keep the heating costs this winter at a level where the wife won't chase me with a frying pan when the gas bill arrives!

When/if I ever manage to get back to it, I have to start with wiring - namely figuring out what my plan was back in 2011 when I packed everything up! Back in 2009 or so I had purchased a Highway 22 wiring kit which has nice automotive grade wires with printing on them...for the most common wires. Of course our cars are anything but "common" though, so I knew there would be a lot of wires to be run without printing on them. How to fix that so I can trace a wire in the future without having tear stuff apart? Label my custom wires, of course! How? A fine-point sharpie directly on the wire? No. Write on a piece of white electrical tape? Closer, but still not good enough. If only I could print a label...heh, heh...

So I bought this, a Brother PT-E300 Label & Shrink Tube Printer Kit:



It'll print directly onto various sizes of heat shrink tubing and labels. Yay! of course, the label stock is expensive and the heat shrink tubing cartridges are RIDICULOUSLY expensive...but hopefully well worth it!

Now I think I'll go check out some of the sources in the "Wiring Sources" post and order some ground wire now...something aftermarket kits don't include a lot of - what is this "chassis ground" of which they speak?
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