If your Ford had a Matthew McConaughey, it would be a Lincoln

Tell 'em, Ace

Spent a few hours here, a few minutes there, got more of the interior out of the Esprit, and demounted the 1990's Fleet Farm tires (that I found the receipt for inside the car!) from the rally wheels that are in... OK shape for being buried in a field forever.

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They cleaned up alright. A little sandblasting, repainting, and they might do someone some good someday.

The center console is in really nice shape. A couple small cig burns, and scuffs, but should be easily repairable and paintable so I can use it in my Trans Am, since the console it came with is ripped and has a hole for the power window switches that I’m not using, since I am converting to manual.

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The seats are almost a total loss. The cushions have wire in them that are rusted, not to mention the smell I’m sure they have... But I was able to save some of the hardware for my TA seats. The passenger armrest was also torn beyond repair so it is junk.. Saving the driver’s side to see if I can clean it. Its pretty nasty.

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But not ALL was bad news. After removing the fan and re-installing the alternator belt (for if and when it DOES run, it can charge the battery and power the accessories I need to verify functionality of) I put a breaker on the crank pulley and...

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It spins over, SUPER EASY!

Next I pulled all the spark plugs (and broke one, oops), they looked great and had anti-seize on them. I checked the distributor next, making sure it was complete and not TOO rusty inside. It was, a little. But the cap and rotor looked like new and it turned when I spun the motor by hand. That done, I installed the missing (and broken replacement) plug, and moved on to installing the starter:

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I had an issue finding the right length starter bolts, as no one had an exact listing for a Pontiac 301 starter bolt set, or even the size. I was able to use one from a Dorman assortment, the other I robbed from work using the shortest out of the assortment as a guide.

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After bolting the starter in, I ran new positive and negative battery cables ($3 each!) to avoid any voltage loss, and since the old ones were broken and nasty. The ground stud on the driver’s head snapped off even after soaking it in PB, so I used an open hole from the removed A/C compressor bracket on the passenger head. And now before I went any further with the next step (fuel system) I had to hook up a battery and verify a couple things...

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1. I HAVE POWER!

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2. IT CRANKS WITH THE KEY!

Okay, so now that we know that all works, onto the fuel system. I had planned to plumb the stock mechanical pump from a hose to a small gas can, just to see if it would work. I had a broken fuel line to deal with and needed a clear filter to see if it was pumping anyways, so I installed this (completely forgetting to check the stock filter at the carb)

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But when I tried to remove the feed line off the pump bottom, the nipple broke. With no way of attaching a hose to it, and it getting dark out I retired for the night. I ordered an electric inline pump that I’ll use instead to feed the carb. It was my Plan B anyways.

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So I finished up by running the plug wires properly, and checking a few vacuum lines I need to either cap off, or re-install so IF the engine fires, it might have a chance to idle properly.

Hopefully by tonight I’ll have it ready.

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