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1963 Continental Acceleration Problems

Hi Bill,

I have a 1963 Lincoln Continental and having some acceleration problems. All started when my mechanical fuel pump died and installed an electric Carter pump, still no good. Then my mechanic thought my original carb was the problem (old and tired), so I installed an Edelbrock 750 with electric choke. Still ran the same, very sluggish and a hesitation during acceleration and an occasional backfire under load. Then thought it might ignition, so removed the points to a Crane points conversion kit. Then finally installed a MSD pro billet with vacuum advance. In the meantime I upgraded the battery cables, spark plug leads, coil and starter motor cable. The car is still doing it.

What can I look at next as I am running out of patience. Your help will be grateful.

Regards,

Angelo

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Hi Angelo -

I am not sure of the performance and/or quality of the aftermarket parts that you have installed but if you and your mechanic are confident that the fuel and ignition are more than sufficient, please have your mechanic carefully read the enclosed blog question and reply from the Lincoln Land Blog of January 2013. Does this information sound like your issue? Let us know the results.
Sincerely,

Bill

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January 21, 2013

1965 Continental Is Sluggish

Hi Bill,

I have been working on a customers 65 Continental for a couple of months now. He brought it to me saying it shut off on him one day and when he started it back up it was running rough and had little power. I have have been through this thing in and out, top and bottom. Did all the usual diagnosis stuff and have changed parts as I have found defects. The car was running rough at idle and would break up real bad when trying to accelerate, popping back back through the carburetor and smelling very rich. The first thing I did was rebuild the distributor, it wasn't advancing and the plate was very corroded. That didn't help at all. I pulled the timing cover to check the chain and marks and that was fine so I pulled the intake and discovered the lifters were seizing in the bores. I cleaned the bores, installed a new camshaft, lifters and timing chain set. While I had it that far down I sent the heads to the machine shop and 500 bucks later they were fixed with a few valves and all new springs. All the rockers are free and pushrods not bent. After all that the car idles as smooth as a brand new car, but still have no power and can barely accelerate. New coil, 12 volts to the coil, new cap and rotor, timing set at 10 degrees ( have tried it from 6 to 16 degrees), 5-6psi fuel pressure at the carb, new helper fuel pump near the tank, compression is 130-140 on every cylinder after warm-up. After all this the car still has very little power, breaks up during acceleration and is still slightly popping through the carburetor at WOT. You can see a mist of fuel with a flashlight coming out of the top of the carb while power breaking it at half throttle. I've hit a brick wall with this one, its the first 430 Ive ever worked on, I'm too far in it to stop now. Any ideas or advice? Thanks so much.

Andy

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Greetings Andy -

After reviewing your letter several times and reading what you have done so far with this engine and assuming that all of your work has been done correctly as per the engine's specifications etc. I can offer the following. The factory exhaust systems on these engines use a " double wall" exhaust pipe. These of course are the pipes that bolt up to the exhaust manifolds and continue on to the next flange connection rearward. It is not unheard of for the inner pipe to develop a separation in such a way as to severely seal up the exhaust on one side enough to cause the symptoms that you are describing. When this occurs the outer wall remains intact and no exhaust leak is heard. Because of the exhaust heat factor this final "plug up" can take place in a very short period of time as your customer has described to you. If the vehicle has the original style pipes on it you should remove them for a careful internal inspection.

Two other items to be aware of when tuning or servicing this era of engine are...The damper pulley on the crankshaft can separate from the rubber damper material and give you an incorrect timing reading. These are available rebuilt. The second is that the vacuum advance units on the distributor are well known to seize or rupture and become inoperative. These are available new.

I hope that the above helps you and I would ask you to let us know here at Lincoln Land what you find.

Sincerely,

Bill

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January 30, 2013

1965 Continental Is Sluggish - Update

Bill I can't thank you enough for the advice, I unbolted the exhaust just before the muffler's and sure enough the passenger side exhaust pipe was clogged shut. I ran 2 new pipes from the manifolds to the mufflers and the car runs perfect!! I've run into double walled exhaust pipe problems before but 99% of those cases were on Honda's. I had no idea these Lincolns were manufactured with it and probably never would have checked it.

Thanks again,

Andy.


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Hi Bill,

Thank you for your advice, being way over here in Australia it is a bit hard to find anyone with any experience at all with these cars. They have their querks and I guess that's part of the reason we love them! I think your blog from Jan 2013 is quite interesting in relation to my car. I had the exhaust built new but(there's always a but) the exhaust guy couldn't undo the bolts on the end of the headers and was worried about snapping them of if he applied too much force, so he left about 3 foot of original pipe and then welded a flange and continued with new pipe. So my problem could may aswell lie there.

Can I also ask, he recommended only using two mufflers before the diff so that they would run hotter and wont collect any water in them due to the fact that as we don't use these cars all too often enough, and thus avoid any rusting away in the muffler.

I forgot to mention last time that the car ran beautiful at idle and cruising at slow speeds runs great, and on the open freeway at about 60 mile/hr runs even better(there's not enough road ha ha) its just that acceleration problem I cant handle. I tell you that I wont rest til I fix that gremlin in there. Cheers again Bill.

Regards,

Angelo

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Angelo -

Everyone has their own opinion and there is plenty to read on the internet regarding exhaust systems. I personally only go with all of the original components on my systems because I enjoy the "Lincoln Quietness" of the factory installations. The available quality (and of course more costly) stainless steel components that are available do not rust out. Be advised however that the cheaper stainless exhaust parts are usually NOT of the optimum quality in all respects. In the end it is up to you according to your wants, needs and affordability. We wish you luck in diagnosing your recent engine issues.

Sincerely,

Bill