After all the work getting Swede home from the farm, the big question remained: will he turn over. If he doesn’t, this job just got a lot more expensive!
The fact is Swede hadn’t run in at least 10 years and could have been even longer. Nobody really knows. The engine is one of GM’s stalwarts, a 235 inline 6 cylinder. After talking with many people, I have high hopes for this engine since numerous people tell me how good it is.
Before cranking it over, I had to first add a variety of new parts. First, I bought a battery (there was no battery in it when I got it), new battery cables, new spark plugs, plug wires and changed the oil. The plugs and plug wires might have been good in the old engine, but with Grandpa mixing and matching plugs and wires, I wanted a matching set of everything.
After replacing all the parts, I climbed in behind the wheel to see what I had. Crossing my fingers, rubbing my lucky rabbit’s foot and turning the key, the engine did nothing. Not a thing. Very disappointed, I thought it through.
Looking over the gauges, I had no power. This was odd since I know I put in a new battery and battery cables. Tracing the wires and asking some questions on a classic Chevy forum, I narrowed down the issue – a cable connecting the battery to the voltage regulator. Grabbing this cable, I put it on the battery post and immediately, the truck tried to turn over. Turns out I forgot to turn the key to the off position! Whoops!
Turning the truck off and attaching the cable, the truck had power and tried to turn over. Still no luck. Looking over it again, it was clear the fuel lines were in complete disrepair. I replaced them all with new line and got a new fuel filter.
However, turning it over again, I still had nothing.
Undaunted, my father-in-law and I pulled the fuel pump in the tank and cleaned it out. We also filled the gas tank with new fuel and tried it again. This time. SUCCESS! He turned right over and idled fairly well with the choke engaged.
Up next, brakes and clutch.