Amphi questions...

C

Craig Taylor

Guest
Ok I'm now the leagle owner of an Amphicar. It needs a carb rebuild,
theres a kit in the glove box should be easy to do. The front
suspension needs some work. There is a tie rod end type of thing on the
passenger side that runs for and aft. One of the ends is shot. Is this
thing a camber ajustment? What happens if it comes loose? My heater
controll has three push pull levers and a small push button to the
right of the levers. I havent figured out what it does yet. Any ideas?
Between the clock and the speedo I have two levers one above the other.
The top lever is the water lights right? They don't work. What does the
lower lever do? Its handle is missing so I can't test it. One other
thing the head lights are very dim on the low setting. High beam is
fine. Anything to look for there? Oh yea, this car has an ignitions
switch with a start position that doesn't do anything and a push button
to start the engine. Is that original or did someone add it in the
past. OK thats all for now.
Thanks,

Craig, Flat Lake Alaska
Proud new owner of a 66?
 
B

Bill Connelly

Guest
>> [...snip!] My heater controll has three push pull levers and a small push
button to the right of the levers. I havent figured out what it does yet.
Any ideas?

One of the pull-out levers directs your engine's coolant system water
through the heat exchanger (i.e. heater box) in your trunk (in earlier
models this is located under the gas tank, while in later models it is
located to the left side of the tank). In theory this controls the amount of
heating, but in practice you just pull it all the way out. Next to it is a
pull out electrical switch that operates the heater fan. This fan pushes
the heat into the passenger compartment. Next to it is another pull-out
lever that controls a "flapper" that directs the flow of the heat into the
engine compartment, either towards the window (defroster) or towards the
feet (heat) or a combination. You can hear the flapper flapping. The
little button press switch next to these heater controls is the "emergency
start" button which overrides the bilge blower fan timer (this assembly is
the old fashioned radio tubed stuff in the trunk, below and forward of the
brake fluid reservoir). The bilge blower fan timer is a U.S. Coast Guard
requirement for inboard-engined boats and is not found on many non-U.S.
cars. It's basically supposed to run a fan for a minute and a half or two
that blows collected fumes out of the bilge before allowing the engine to
start. The timer tubes are often faulty and would run forever (or not at
all) if left to themselves. Most folks just use the override button.

>> Between the clock and the speedo I have two levers one above the other.
The top lever is the water lights right?

No...the top one between the clock and speedo should be the bilge pump
switch. Unless it's been replaced by a previous owner, it should look
slightly different than the others in that it has a little dark spot (blue)
in the center. If the bulb within is functioning it should dimly light up
when engaged and you should hear the pump operate. You should NOT operate
this bilge pump dry for more than a few minutes as this will damage the
pump's impeller (that's the little fan that pushes the juice). I would also
strongly urge you to mount an automatic backup bilge pump in your vehicle in
case the original fails or clogs. It doesn't cost much for that little
extra piece of mind. Details on this can be found at
http://www.geocities.com/SoHo/8389/autosploodge.html .


>> What does the lower lever do? Its handle is missing so I can't test it.

The pull-out switch between the clock and speedo and below the bilge pump
switch is the manual bilge fan switch. Aside from its intended purpose
described above, the manual bilge fan is handy when you're bumping down the
road for a fair clip to help dry out the forward sections of the vehicle,
where water can gather (under the spare tire).

>> One other thing the head lights are very dim on the low setting. High
beam is fine. Anything to look for there?

Sounds like a bad ground or some other connection. This is very common in
Amphicars due to corrosion.

>> Oh yea, this car has an ignitions switch with a start position that
doesn't do anything and a push button to start the engine. Is that original
or did someone add it in the past.

That's the bilge blower fan override button, as described above. Just push
it and THEN try starting with the key like most other modern cars.

Thanks to Jim Oliver, you can find a nice reproduction of the original
Amphicar Owners Manual at
http://www.iserv.net/~jgo/toys/amphi/manual/index.html . This should answer
most any other questions you should have about the basic setup and operation
of your new toy. You should also look over the various links in the Club's
"Restoration Resources" page at http://www.amphicar.com/restoration.htm .

~Bilgemaster~
 
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