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Old 04-30-2007, 09:02 AM   #1
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Hello all. Wonderful forum you have here!

I am in need of considerable help with the power train of my rig and hope someone out there can help.

It is a 1984 Journey on a P class Workhorse frame with a rebuilt 454, 4 barrel. The main problem is that it has been sitting in a shed for the past 12 years without much servicing and I now need to get it road worthy in the next two months.

The immediate goal is to drive it about 50 miles to a friends garage. I am a proficient shade tree mechanic and live in Seattle where all automotive services are available.

My main concern is the condition of the engine /tranny. I have been told that seals dry out but do not know which seals and what exactly this means.

Started the engine about 4 years ago after putting Marvel Mystery Oil into the cylinders and letting set for about a month. Changed the oil and poured a half quart into each head. Started right up but I became concerned about sucking rust out of the fuel tank so shut it off.

Have decided that there will probably be lots of problems to correct so decided to eliminate the fuel problems up front. Pulled the heavily varnished carb off for rebuild. Will replace the fuel line and install a large fuel filter. What about rust in the tank?

While waiting for the carb to come back am just working on everything else that seems to need attention. Any suggestions?
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Old 04-30-2007, 09:02 AM   #2
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Hello all. Wonderful forum you have here!

I am in need of considerable help with the power train of my rig and hope someone out there can help.

It is a 1984 Journey on a P class Workhorse frame with a rebuilt 454, 4 barrel. The main problem is that it has been sitting in a shed for the past 12 years without much servicing and I now need to get it road worthy in the next two months.

The immediate goal is to drive it about 50 miles to a friends garage. I am a proficient shade tree mechanic and live in Seattle where all automotive services are available.

My main concern is the condition of the engine /tranny. I have been told that seals dry out but do not know which seals and what exactly this means.

Started the engine about 4 years ago after putting Marvel Mystery Oil into the cylinders and letting set for about a month. Changed the oil and poured a half quart into each head. Started right up but I became concerned about sucking rust out of the fuel tank so shut it off.

Have decided that there will probably be lots of problems to correct so decided to eliminate the fuel problems up front. Pulled the heavily varnished carb off for rebuild. Will replace the fuel line and install a large fuel filter. What about rust in the tank?

While waiting for the carb to come back am just working on everything else that seems to need attention. Any suggestions?
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Old 05-01-2007, 12:54 PM   #3
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I will take a stab. Battery's first. put some marvels in each cylinder and Check all the wiring to make sure you won't have a fire when you hook up that battery as mice love the insulation for some reason. The biggest seal problems is going to be the front seal on the transmission. The engine may leak some but if it does, replace it after the 50 mile trip. If the gas tank was full you should drain it out and put new in. If it wasn't you should still dump the old gas but You should let a welding shop check out that tank as it could be 'Swiss cheese'. After that hook up the battery check for any other wiring problems. No blown fuses, etc.Oil and filter and grease all the fittings. Tire pressures should be checked but those tires are shot for sure! they have been sitting for 12 years. be careful there! After doing all the above. unhook the Battery wire to the distributer and crank it over a few times with that wire disconnected. this will allow the marvels to coat and for the engine oil pump to get pressure thru the oil passages. Now hook up the batt. wire to the distributer and try it and see if it will start. If it will let it idle for a minute and watch for leaks, water, engine oil , transmission and power steering. Try and see if the ps and brake booster both work. Pump the brakes and see if you have a good pedal. If all that checks out you should be able to go get some tires and do the 50 mile trip. I would have someone follow you and have a couple of extra quarts of oil, trans. fluid and a 50/50 mix of anti-freeze, a gallon should do it. One other thing that I almost forgot the fan belts. Check before and replace as needed.
Sounds like a pain in the a**, but those systems NEED to be checked and or fixed before you try and go the 50 miles. Good luck, and welcome to the forum. keep us posted as we help each other out while we are rebuilding our 'homes'. any other questions,ask,thats what we are here for. Capt. Dan
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Old 05-01-2007, 07:12 PM   #4
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Welcome Chance to irv2.
Looks like you got some work cut out for you.
Enjoy the forums and post often, some others will jump in here and have some suggestions, good luck in your new venture.
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Old 05-02-2007, 12:44 AM   #5
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Chance, welcome to iRV2.com. We are glad to have you join us here and look forward to helping where we can on your project. Looks like you are off to a good start. Now that you have introduced yourself we can pick up the next chapter in the MH problem and solution section. Take care and be safe.
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:33 AM   #6
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Thanks for the advise and support. I have broken down Captain Dan's list, added bits of advise from other sources and posted the current progress. All are welcome to expand on this list.

1)Battery's first.
Have new engine and house batteries

2)Check all the wiring to make sure you won't have a fire when you hook up that battery as mice love the insulation for some reason.
After that hook up the battery check for any other wiring problems. No blown fuses, etc.
110vac to and through the converter for house 12vdc is good. Have a problem when hooking up the house battery.

3)Put some marvels in each cylinder
Piston rings are currently marinating in Marvel Mystery oil. Will let set for about a week.

4)The biggest seal problems is going to be the front seal on the transmission.
Will watch for it. Am planning to replace the tranny fluid and filter.

5)If the gas tank was full you should drain it out and put new in. If it wasn't you should still dump the old gas but You should let a welding shop check out that tank as it could be 'Swiss cheese'.
Gas tank was almost empty. I am told by the carburetor technician that when gas goes it develops a very foul odor. On opening the fill cap the gas smells like gas. As there was no gas smell before opening the fill cap, I assume the tank does not have any holes in it. Will drain the fuel and replace with new.

6)Oil and filter and grease all the fittings.
Did most of them. Some will not take grease. How do I get grease into them? A solvent to break up the plug?

7)Tire pressures should be checked but those tires are shot for sure! they have been sitting for 12 years. be careful there! After doing all the above.
Took the tires in to Les Schwab. They are about 8 years old with minor side wall check marks. Good enough for limited travel but not long distance driving.

8)Unhook the battery wire to the distributor and crank it over a few times with that wire disconnected. this will allow the marvels to coat and for the engine oil pump to get pressure thru the oil passages.
Was advised to crank the engine over without spark plugs.

9)Now hook up the bat. wire to the distributor and try it and see if it will start. If it will let it idle for a minute and watch for leaks, water, engine oil , transmission and power steering.
Was advised to add quart of diesel to engine oil (but not to over fill!) The diesel will help with sticky lifters and whatnot.

10)Try and see if the ps and brake booster both work.
Brakes are frozen with rust. Sanded the rotors down, replaced the pads and am now installing rebuild kits in the brake pistons. Will replace the brake fluid with DOT 3. Was told that if there is proper brake pedal movement the master cylinder is probably OK. If not, it cannot be rebuilt in the field and must be replaced.

11)One other thing that I almost forgot the fan belts. Check before and replace as needed.
Have a new alternator and belts, not yet installed.

12)What about the coolant system. The radiator looks like it is impossible to remove.

13)I would have someone follow you and have a couple of extra quarts of oil, trans. fluid and a 50/50 mix of anti-freeze, a gallon should do it.
This is a good point. I will also get my AAA upgraded to include motorhome towing.
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Old 05-02-2007, 01:12 PM   #7
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Ok, The radiator is held in with a surrounding bracket that is held by two arms, one on each side and two brackets where the surround meets the frame. Take out the 4 bolts that the upper supports are held with and there are two BIG bolts that go thru the frame with and there is nuts on the frame end the bolts are too long to try the other way. You need a 1/2' breaker bar to break the bolts loose. Once they are out your hoses are off it will tilt forward and then it will have to be lifted up to remove. Sounds hard but after you do it, It's easy! You may be able to have it rodded but if that thing is rotten,a recore is in order. Isn't cheap!! Mine was $350 a couple of months ago. I hope you can get by with a rodding job!! Once you have the unit out the top frame comes out with I think 4 bolts. The nuts are welded on the side pieces. Once the top bracket is off, Ever SO Gentily, Slowly remove the radiator from the mounts. Be careful about twisting and or prying it out!!! Its in a rubber mount on all four corners and the top was pretty easy for me but those bottom two.Were very hard to get to let go. I used dish detergent and just a little water to make it slick and it finally came loose.Good luck with it and hope it was easier and that you can get by with a rod job!!
One other thing, That master cylinder may be ok right now, but they have a nasty habit of leaking out the back side of the cylinder. It may take awhile but just keep a eye on it.
Hope you have good luck with the rest of the job!! And if any other questions...Ask!!
We will try and answer as many as possible!!
Check in later, Capt. Dan
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