My first Corvair

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naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Fri Sep 15, 2017 4:41 pm

Hello, I'm Roger and I just picked up a 63 Corvair Monza Convertible and included parts car I have not yet seen (yippee). My specialty is mid 60"s GM A bodies, but I could not resist this one. Two questions. Is the metal shrouding around the lower engine all necessary, or is it for inside heat like a VW? Second, could I get a link for VIN and option code decoding? Thanks

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bbodie52
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Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by bbodie52 » Fri Sep 15, 2017 6:06 pm

:wave: :welcome2: :wave: Welcome, Roger, to the Corvair Forum!

Here's a link to the section on the Corvair Forum that will guide you through decoding the body tag on your Corvair…
:link: viewtopic.php?f=51&t=4321

This chart will serve as a guide for decoding your 1963 Corvair Monza VIN…
vinearly.gif
vinearly.gif (4.86 KiB) Viewed 441 times
If you provide a close-up photograph of the body tag in your engine compartment, I will decode it for you and post the results here.

FYI, these charts are applicable for decoding the VIN numbers on late-model Corvairs and FC (Forward Control) Corvair vans and trucks…
VIN - LM Corvair Passenger Car VIN Tag Decoding.jpg
VIN Van.jpg
The metal shrouding on the underside of the engine has a primary purpose of providing thermostatic control of the cooling air that passes over the engine. The thermostats that are mounted on the lower shrouds control the rear doors that restrict airflow. This also helps the engine to reach normal operating temperature more quickly — especially in cold climates. Without these thermostatic control doors the engine will reach normal operating temperature more slowly, which will also tend to affect gas mileage, since the automatic chokes that are present in 1962-1969 Corvair engines will take longer to fully open, causing the choke butterfly valves to remain partially closed for a longer period of time until the engine reaches normal operating temperatures.

It is possible to run the engine without the lower shrouds. Many do so in warm climates, such as desert climates in Arizona. Some Corvair owners also install tubular headers in place of the cast exhaust manifolds, which requires at least partial removal of the lower shrouds for clearance purposes.

Except for those few early Corvairs that are fitted with gasoline fueled passenger compartment heaters, most Corvairs obtain their passenger compartment heat and heated air for the defroster by redirecting engine cooling air to the heating system into the passenger compartment. Removing the lower shrouds will generally make less heat available to warm the passenger compartment. Also, leaving the exhaust manifolds exposed during winter driving may result in moist air and steam being directed into the passenger compartment and onto the windshield if water splashes from the rear tires onto the underside of the exposed engine.

The bellows-styled thermostats default in the fully opened position if the thermostat fails, which ensures that the thermostat doors would remain fully opened in the event of a failed thermostat.
Corvair Automatic Choke Mechanism.jpg
Corvair Automatic Choke Mechanism
Corvair Automatic Choke Mechanism.jpg (27.91 KiB) Viewed 441 times
Lower Shroud.jpg
Lower Shroud
Corvair Lower Shrouds and Thermostat Control System.jpg
Corvair Lower Shrouds and Thermostat Control System
The link below will provide you with a list of useful websites that are Corvair-related. Some of the links will lead you to an extensive technical library that will allow you to download shop manuals and other technical references in Adobe Reader format at no cost. There is also a link that will help you to locate nearby CORSA (Corvair Society of America) club chapters. While the Corvair Forum can be very helpful as you work on your Corvair, having local friends and contacts in your region who are knowledgeable about the Corvair can also be very helpful. These family-friendly CORSA chapters often offer picnics, group scenic drives, technical training and assistance, car shows, and competition events that can greatly enhance your enjoyment of Corvair ownership. You will also find a list of essential Corvair parts suppliers. Clark's Corvair Parts is the biggest and oldest Corvair supplier in the world. You will find a link that can provide you with a series of videos that amount to a tour of the Clark's Corvair Parts facilities. I think you will be amazed at the quality of the reproduction components they offer — particularly the interior carpeting and re-upholstery items. Parts suppliers such as this truly make our Corvair hobby possible.

Common and Useful Corvair Websites

:link: viewtopic.php?f=225&t=6007

:dontknow: I would like to encourage you to expand on your initial post and tell us more about yourself. If you can describe your personal assessment of your mechanical skills and abilities, that would help a lot. Members of the Corvair Forum love to be helpful in assisting other Corvair owners with technical support and advice, but it helps a lot if we have some understanding of your technical background and mechanical abilities, Corvair-related knowledge, etc. Helping us to know more about you will help us to write comments to you that are tailored to your needs and experience. Knowing your location is also useful, because knowing where you live can sometimes suggest possibilities.

Please post some pictures of your 1963 Monza convertible! I would love to see it in detail!

:welcome:

:chevy:
Brad Bodie
Lake Chatuge, North Carolina
Image 1966 Corvair Corsa Convertible

naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Fri Sep 15, 2017 7:01 pm

Thank you that is a lot of info. I assumed the shrouds may have something to do with cooling. These look quite beat up so I will be looking for replacements at some point. Not interested in restoring the heater feature as I am in Florida.
Thanks also for the vin decoder, I will look up numbers soon.
As for myself, I have 35+ years in the auto body and paint trade, an untrained but quite capable amateur mechanic. I am currently doing a frame off on a 67 Cutlass Conv. and have a 65 Buick Special Conv. as a part time daily driver. I can do most repairs save for transmission rebuild. Have taught myself some upholstery as well. As I mentioned, this is my first Corvair. Found it on Craigslist the other day only a few miles from home for what I think was a real good price. Starts right up, runs ok, initial inspection says it needs brakes and probably a throw-out bearing. 4 speed. I'll try to post some pictures now.
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Attachments
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bbodie52
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Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by bbodie52 » Sat Sep 16, 2017 7:34 am

The photographs you posted revealed a few discrepancies on your 1963 Corvair. The first thing I noticed was the front grill emblem. The one that is attached to your car is from a 1960 Corvair. The 1963 Corvair front grill emblem is shown below. Clark's Corvair Parts does not appear to have reproduced the 1963 trim item. They have a reproduction of the 1964 trim and apparently components of the 1962 front grill. If you want the correct front grill on your 1963 Corvair you might have to settle for a used one. I would suggest checking with the Corvair Ranch in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. They have a large inventory of used Corvair parts and may be able to provide in 1963 front grill that is in fairly good condition.

:link: http://www.corvairranch.com/

ImageImage
Image1963 CorvairImage

It is hard to be certain from the single photograph, but the engine in your 1963 Corvair may be a 110 hp 164 CI engine from a 1965 or later Corvair.

Image

Here are a few things that I noticed when looking over the photograph of your Corvair engine compartment…
  • The perimeter shroud that should seal the engine compartment to the car body appears to be from a late-model (1965-1969) engine.
    Image
  • The generator, oil filter adapter, and crankshaft pulley all appear to be appropriate for 1963 engine. A 1965 or later engine would be fitted with an alternator, a harmonic balancer or cast crankshaft pulley instead of the riveted stamped steel pulley on your engine, and would have a fan belt guide on the idler pulley.
    Image
  • The rubber boot that seals around the oil dipstick tube is a rubber grommet type that was found in 1965-1969 Corvair engines. Earlier engines were fitted with a rubber boot.
    ImageImage
  • The top engine shroud is fitted with a fan belt guide that appeared in 1964 and later engines.
  • The blower fan on your engine is a cast magnesium type. This also appeared on 1964 and later engines. Earlier engines had a stamped steel cooling fan that was heavier. The switch to the lightweight magnesium fan and belt guides help to eliminate or greatly reduce fan belt damage or flipping fan belts. Much of the problem with fan belts on Corvairs were caused by the heavy steel cooling fan "flywheel effect" that would place a lot of stress on the fan belt as engine crankshaft pulley speed changed rapidly and the heavy steel fan would not track with the RPM changes. The fan belt took most of the stress and often flipped or broke prematurely as a result.
    Image
  • The Positive Crankcase Ventilation (PCV) tubing on your engine appears to be the type fitted to 1964 and later engines that utilized a fixed orifice to control airflow between the tube and the vacuum balance tube between the two carburetors. 1962 and earlier engines were fitted with a road draft tube. In 1963 a PCV system was introduced, but it utilized a PCV valve instead of a fixed orifice.
Many engine components can be easily transferred from one engine to another, so peripheral hardware is not necessarily a certain identifier of the core engine. The two quickest ways to identify the engine are the engine serial number and the cylinder head casting number. The engine serial number is located to the right of the generator and between the oil filter adapter and the top engine shroud. The serial number starts with the letter "T", which stands for Tonawanda (the plant location where all Corvair engines were manufactured). The next four numbers in the serial number indicate the month and day of manufacture (no year is indicated, unfortunately). The final one or two letter code at the end of the serial number indicates the horsepower rating and transmission type, and possibly other unique configurations associated with air conditioning, a smog pump, etc. However, these two letter codes were not specific to a single model year. The same two letter code may be found on different model year engines that may have significant variations such as engine displacement. The 1963 engine was 145 CI. In 1964 the engine displacement on all Corvairs was increased to 164 CI by increasing the crankshaft stroke. In spite of the variations and inconsistencies with engine serial numbers, the engine serial number can still provide a valuable clue as to the nature of the engine.

The cylinder head casting number is much more specific to a single model year and engine displacement. It can be difficult to see because it may be hidden behind some of the engine sheet metal. An example of the cylinder head casting number is shown below…

Image

If you can obtain the engine serial number and a cylinder head casting number from your engine we can help you to identify the actual engine in your Corvair.

Planning for and budgeting for repair and restoration of your Corvair can often be a challenge. Suppliers like Clark's Corvair Parts can go a long way toward helping you to plan your work and to prioritize the jobs on your Corvair. For example, I noticed in the photographs you provided that upholstery items and door panels were missing in the interior of your Corvair. The online catalog sections related to upholstery and carpeting may provide you with a lot of ideas of just what can be accomplished as you page through those sections. The link below to the Clark's Corvair Parts tour videos is very revealing as they show just what is involved with manufacturing accurate replacement parts and interior upholstery components for your Corvair. There are several videos in that section. I would suggest starting with viewing the video in the section entitled Clark's Corvair Parts - Upholstery Tour.

TOUR OF CLARK'S CORVAIR PARTS

:link: http://www.corvair.com/user-cgi/catalog ... age=TOUR-1

UPHOLSTERY AND CARPETING

:link: http://www.corvair.com/user-cgi/catalog ... graygo.y=0

:link: http://www.corvair.com/user-cgi/catalog ... w_page=277

CLARK'S CORVAIR PARTS TOUR — VIDEOS

:link: viewtopic.php?f=81&t=6004

FYI — I have attached images of the 1963 Corvair brochure and a file copy of the 1963 Chevrolet Corvair GM Heritage Center Specs

:chevy:
Attachments
1 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - COVER.jpg
1 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - COVER
2 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 1.jpg
2 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 1
3 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 2.jpg
3 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 2
4 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 3.jpg
4 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 3
5 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 4.jpg
5 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 4
6 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 5.jpg
6 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 5
7 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 6.jpg
7 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 6
8 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 7.jpg
8 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 7
9 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 8.jpg
9 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 8
10 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 9.jpg
10 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 9
11 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 10.jpg
11 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - PAGE 10
12 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - COVER 2.jpg
12 - 1963 Corvair Sales Brochure - COVER 2
1963 Chevrolet Corvair GM Heritage Center Specs.pdf
1963 Chevrolet Corvair GM Heritage Center Specs
(3.11 MiB) Downloaded 5 times
Brad Bodie
Lake Chatuge, North Carolina
Image 1966 Corvair Corsa Convertible

naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Sat Sep 16, 2017 8:45 am

Thanks again, a lot of info. Not looking for a 100% original car, just gonna get it roadworthy, patch up the floor, give it a buff and shine and enjoy it for now. Picked up the parts car I mentioned today and as expected it's total junk. Will pick off some pieces I can use, then off to the scrapper. I think I found a usable set of shrouds in the trunk. Also 2 different style air cleaners, one with 2 side filters and one with a larger central filter. I did pick up engine parts which has a nice set of cleaned cases, redone heads, turned crank, etc. and a box of new internal parts. No jugs or pistons, however.
Attachments
20170916_112546.jpg
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naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Sun Sep 24, 2017 5:34 am

Just realized someone before me had the screen name naderwaswrong spelled differently. I would be willing to change if you could show me thru the process.

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bbodie52
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Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by bbodie52 » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:15 am

naderwaswrong wrote:Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:34 am

Just realized someone before me had the screen name naderwaswrong spelled differently. I would be willing to change if you could show me thru the process.
As you can see below, there are often similar screen names on the Corvair Forum. Nothing wrong with that...

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.


:doh:
naderwaswrong
n8rwaswrong

Naderater
Nader Hater
NaderHaterJr
nadrh8r

:woo:

Image
He is 83 now.
Ralph Nader visits Clark's Corvair Parts...
Image
Nader.jpg
bbodie52 wrote:And... not only is it argued that Ralph Nader's efforts actually prolonged the life of the Corvair, but it can be argued that the Corvair prolonged the fame, national recognition and popularity of Ralph Nader! And that led to the election of George Bush over Al Gore in the 2000 election. Ralph Nader (Green Party) received 1.63% of the popular vote in Florida. George Bush received 48.85% to Al Gore's 48.84%. Since Ralph Nader and Al Gore were both "Green" kinda guys, it could be shown that Ralphie "stole" 1.63% of votes that probably would have gone to Al Gore if Nader had not been on the ballot. Just 0.02% more Floridian votes would have provided Al Gore with the popular vote win, and all of the Florida Electoral Votes (25).

The final Electoral Vote count in the 2000 election was Bush (271), Gore (266).
If Florida's 25 votes had gone to Gore, the outcome might have been a President Al Gore for possibly two terms.

:eek:

So the introduction of the Corvair in the 1960s appears to have determined the outcome of the Presidential race in the 2000 election!

:whoa:

:Love it:
Image
Brad Bodie
Lake Chatuge, North Carolina
Image 1966 Corvair Corsa Convertible

naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Tue Sep 26, 2017 7:03 am

Found the block # it's TO228RD.

PaulR
Posts: 74
Joined: Fri Jul 31, 2015 7:56 pm
Location: Appleton, WI

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by PaulR » Mon Oct 09, 2017 11:15 am

Quite a mish mash of different year parts. The engine fuel lines are especially interesting. Reminds me of what people have to do in Cuba to keep their old cars roadworthy. Good luck with your purchase.
1964 Monza convertible 110/PG

naderwaswrong
Posts: 26
Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:25 am

Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by naderwaswrong » Mon Oct 09, 2017 3:57 pm

Yeah, this has had some very untalented hands on it. Fuel line in the tunnel was clamped with zip ties.

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Trip Rodriguez
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Re: My first Corvair

Unread post by Trip Rodriguez » Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:48 pm

As for the front grill item, it's worth noting that the 63 grill bar is the only one that is aluminum instead of cast pot metal. This means that the 63 grill bar is the only one that can be easily restored to perfect condition with just a little effort. As long as it's not smashed (they rarely are), if it looks tired you can sand off the anodized coating, polish it up, and repaint the black portion and it's like new again. If you were close by I'd tell you to stop over and I'd give you one.

If you have no desire to put the proper grill bar on the car fear not, Corvair hobbyists tend to be on the more forgiving side when it comes to this kind of stuff! That 60 grill badge is very attractive, but it was made for a concave (unique to 1960) vs. convex surface (all other years 61-64) so it probably looks a bit wonky on there.
Ray "Trip" Rodriguez III
Gouldsboro, PA
66 Corsa 140 coupe
65 Corsa 180 coupe
64 Monza Convertible
61 Air conditioned Monza coupe (Missy's car)

Image

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