Saturday, February 21, 2009

Engine Gasket Kits

Beware of Engine Gasket Kits

When you rebuild your Thunderbird engine you will most likely replace all the gaskets. The gaskets needed for an engine rebuilding are often sold in a complete set by the gasket manufacturers. They include head gaskets, oil pump gaskets, water pump gaskets, exhaust manifold gaskets, etc. The manufacturers include every possible gasket needed for your type of engine. For the Thunderbird engine, there is one gasket provided which should "never" be used on your Thunderbird engine. In almost every kit for the 292 or 312 engine, the gasket manufacturers have included a distributor gasket. This gasket is meant to fit under your distributor shaft at the point it is connected to your engine. DO NOT use this gasket on your Thunderbird. It is not needed and if you use this gasket you will put excessive force on the gear that drives your oil pump. If you install the gasket, you will most likely lose all oil pressure within a few hundred miles of operation. If you recently had your engine rebuilt and this problem has occurred, check to see if the distributor gasket was installed on your engine. After all, most mechanics not familiar with theThunderbird 292 or 312 engine will simply assume that if a gasket was provided, it must be needed.

In addition to the above problem with the distributor gasket, a common mistake made on engine rebuilds of the past was to install the headgaskets backwards. To the untrained eye there appears to be no difference as to which way the head gasket should be installed. Upon placing the gaskets on the engine, either direction would appear to be correct. All the bolt holes will line up whichever way you put the gasket on. The truth is that the gasket is not symmetrical and there is an important difference as to how you install the head gaskets. An incorrect installation will restrict the flow of your car's cooling fluid and can result in a hot running engine. The newer gasket replacement kits have arrows directing which way to install the headgaskets. If you have an older set, the rule of thumb is that the square corner is installed on the top of the head facing the radiator.

Oil Dipstick Check

Oil Dipstick Check

There is a very common problem among 1955-57 Thunderbirds which if left unrecognized can cause damage to your car's rear main seal. The problem exists with your car's dipstick. Ken Smizinski has provided me with this helpful advice. On many early Thunderbirds the dipstick does not correctly measure the level of oil present in your car's engine. An estimated 75-80% of Thunderbirds still in existence have improperly gauged dipsticks. The problem has been aggravated by poor replacement parts and switched dipsticks from other engines over the course of time. Most of these incorrect dipsticks read "low" when your car actually has the correct amount of oil present in your engine. Adding too much oil to your engine can cause undue oil pressure to be applied to your rear main seal. This added pressure can cause your rear main seal to fail causing your car to leak oil from the rear of the engine. As many Thunderbird owners can attest, this is a very common problem with 1955-57 Thunderbirds. As such, if you have recently had yourengine rebuilt, or would like to preserve your existing rear main seal, Ken advises that you should change your oil and filter and make a mark on your dipstick at the point your dipstick registers the level of your oil. Make sure you fill your engine with the correct amount of oil! For those of you with original "canister" oil filters, you will need a total of six quarts of oil when you change your oil and filter. The new spin-on paper filters with Motorcraft part number FL-1A will require only 5 1/2 quarts of oil when you change your oil and filter. Make sure you let your car run for approximately five minutes, then turn it off to insure that you get an accurate oil level reading on your dipstick. In addition, make sure your car is level. Now you will have a point of reference on your dipstick which will correctly tell you when your car needs more oil. A simple solution to a very common problem indeed. Thank you Ken for providing another "Tech-Tip."

Rear Main Seal

Is That Oil Leak From My Rear Main Seal?

Many Classic Thunderbird owners are plagued by oil leaking from their rear main seal area. This particular oil leak is costly to eliminate. Many owners have gone to great lengths to fix this leak. Some have gone as far as having the engine rebuilt only to have the leak reoccur within a few days, weeks or months of operation. Today's mechanics, many younger than your car, are not familiar with the workings and design of the Thunderbird engine. In addition, many engine rebuilding kits have unfortunately provided us with poor fitting or inferior goods. Any "regular" mechanic who is familiar with today's cars would not necessarily be knowledgeable as to what parts, supplied in certain rebuilding kits, do not work in our cars. The result of this loss of information is a misdiagnosed leaking rear main seal.

If your car leaks oil where your engine is bolted to your transmission housing, you have a leak which may be due to a bad rear main seal. Your leak, however, may not be from the rear main seal but from the gasket located behind the oil filter plate which bolts to your engine block. The gasket is part number 6838. This gasket is supplied in engine rebuilding kits but has been determined by many Thunderbird experts, our own Ken Smizinski being one of them, to be too thin to prevent oil leakage from behind the oil filter base plate. This leaking oil migrates down along the oil pump housing and drips down at the exact location where oil will drip from a leaking rear main seal. If your oil leak is caused by this gasket, you are a lucky individual. The cure can be done at home, the cost is less than $2.00, and you don't even have to change your oil!

Prestige Thunderbird has made available a special oversized oil filter base plate gasket. This part is still numbered 6838, so you have to specify the "oversized" version when ordering. A diagram of your oil filter base plate and its assembly is located on page 26 of your 1997 Prestige catalog. It, however, does not show the base plate gasket.

To change your gasket you will need to remove your oil filter or your canister and filter element if your car is not equipped with today's "spin-on" oil filters. After removing your oil filter, clean up any oil that was spilled on the block or floor. In the center of the oil filter base plate is a nut. It is numbered 6890. Once the nut has been removed, you will be able to remove the base plate, part number 6751. Clean the back of the plate off making sure you remove any old gasket pieces or silicon sealant. Clean off the section of the engine block where the plate was attached in the same fashion. Install the new gasket from Prestige using silicone sealant on both sides of the gasket. Reinstall the base plate making sure that the section labeled "top" is located in the top position relative to your engine block. Reinstall your center nut. Do not overtighten this nut. You may warp your base plate if you overtighten this nut. Reinstall your oil filter or canister and filter element. Add oil to replace that which you spilled on yourself or your car, if any. Start your engine and check for leaks. if your lucky your problems will be solved! Good Luck.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

President's Report

Bert Eisenhour Award

The recipient of the Bert Eisenhour Award is determined by the voting of Club members for a member who has shown outstanding service, beyond and above the expected level, for the betterment of the Club.

Why is this award called THE BERT EISENHOUR AWARD? A few facts:

1962: Bert and five other T-Birders started your Club. [Founded as T.S.C.C.C. - Thunderbird Sports Car Club ofChicagoland] The Volume 1, Number 1 issue of Bird News was published in March of 1962.

1970: Bert assumes the Title of Bird News Editor, continuing to serve in this capacity, uninterrupted, to the present; even though there were some serious health issues, Bert has never missed an issue.

Photo- The Bert Eisenhour Award

Being editor, he is responsible for the entire publication of this newsletter; i.e., content, format, etc. (Color printing is courtesy of member, Bob Hoge, President of the Valley Community Bank, St. Charles.)

Since accepting the Editor's position, 38 years ago, Bert has overseen the printing of 456 issues of the B-N. This equates to approximately 15,000 individual pieces, be they articles, pictures or whatever is to be printed for the CTCC newsletter. (This number is purely a guess on my part)
Go ahead - count the individual pieces in the monthly copy. Let's do some math:
Time needed to create each issue: this is a guesstimate: 40 hours. 40 hours times 456 issues equates to 18,240 hours, using 2080 - as the average hours worked per year - equals an average of 40 hours per week.

Numbers figure out that Bert has worked on the B-N for 8 3/4 years, in real time. Bert has set the standard for dedication to our Club. In addition to having earned any number of plaques in newsletter competitions, Bert has earned Gold Awards in the CTCI Newsletter Contests in 2007 and 2008.

This, in a few sentences, is why it is called the 'BERT EISENHOUR AWARD'.

"Now you know."

- Len Keil, President

C.T.C.C. Holiday Party- 2008

C.T.C.C. Holiday Party - Jane

The evening of December 6th at Chandler's in Schaumburg proved once again that 'Birds of a Feather Flock Together! Interestingly, the Chicagoland Thunderbird Club had booked a room for their party on the same night as ours - and their group was assigned a hall directly across from our spacious C.T.C.C. room!

Our evening started with excellent accordion music provided by Elmer Lange and sponsored by Valley Community Bank. Each member received a Fuel Filter and an Oil Filter, a DVD (Fabulous Fords of the 50's), and a Ford Classics 2009 Calendar.

The table centerpieces were attractively created by Liz Werth and included a small notepad for each person. Additionally, Bob Hoge placed a squeeze flashlight at each place setting.

Following a delicious dinner, several presentations were made. CTCC gave outgoing President, Ken Smizinski, a gift certificate for his numerous efforts on behalf of our Club. Art and Gail Hascek received a 20 x 30" color poster of themselves with their 1st Place Trophy awarded for their '57 T-Bird at the Lombard Show.

Finally, it was time for the presentation of the BERT EISENHOUR AWARD to the "Thunderbirder of the Year." By unanimous approval, this year's recipient was Liz Werth, who has devoted countless hours to CTCC as Club Secretary and as a frequent contributor to Bird News. Liz also received a small (permanent) plaque to keep after the traveling plaque goes to next year's winner.

Names were drawn for the many Door Prizes generously donated by vendors and CTCC members. Each person received at least two gifts!

The "Long Distance Award" should go to Dave and Mary Jane Osborne, who drove here from Oregon, Wisconsin!

We missed Otto and Judy Bruggenthies who had to cancel because Otto had hurt himself in a fall; we all signed a card for him, along with a get-well message.

In all, it was a delightful evening! We departed feeling the glow of the Holidays. We thank Ken and Kathy for organizing such an enjoyable celebration.

Those revelers in attendance were: Bill and Elaine Axelson, Bill and Jane Balogh, Bob and Marcy Burhop, Bert and Jane Eisenhour, Pete and Lisa Ekstrom, Gordon Gluff and Mary, Maryann Graziano and Paul Ureche, Joel Greenberg and Annie Luginbill, Art and Gail Hascek, Laura Hascek and Mike Cielenski, Bob and Helen Hoge, Larry Johnson, Len and Mary Keil, Larry and Karen Kelly, Joe and Sandy Kraatz, Pete and Marylu Kramer, Ed Levin and Rose Kovelenko, Paul and Urszula Mounts, Dan Mrozek, Perry and Cynthia O'Kano, Dave and Mary Jane Osbome, Jerry and Pat Peterson, Dave and Marian Pogorski, Doug and Soon Hee Rogers, Lloyd and Joan Schellin, Gary and Debbie Smithe, Ken and Kathy Smizinski, Bill and Bonnie Thelen, Len and Irene Vinyard, Bob and Sue Wenderski, Bill and Liz Werth and Tom and Alice Wolfe.

As always, generous contributions by our members, vendors and friends, helped make the event a huge success. This year, member. Bob Hoge, President of the Valley Community Bank in St. Charles, underwrote the cost of our talented accordion player. CTCC subsidized a portion of the meal cost and supplied the fuel-filters for our T-Birds. Each member received the Fabulous Fords DVD, courtesy CTCC. A special thanks to Dan Mrozek, who obtained 40-Motorcraft oil filters from ROTO Lincoln Mercury in Arlington Heights. Our sincere appreciation to John D'Agostino, Parts Mgr.
Roto Lincoln Mercury, Subaru, Mazda, Inc.
1555 E. Rand Road
Arlington Heights, IL 60004
Phone: 847/255-5700
Fax: 847/577-9729

The Editor's Notebook- Jan. 2009

the editor's NOTEbook

A HAPPY NEW YEAR TO OUR CTCC MEMBERSHIP, WHEREVER YOU MAY LIVE! [We have members in AZ, IN, MO, NV, OH, PA, TN, VA and WI, as well as Illinois!]

A DUES reminder is included on page 10, so take time to mail your check. By doing so, you will ensure receiving your future issues of B-N.

While not complete, the 2009 CTCC Calendar is presented in tentative form - see page 2. Note the item on the January 16th event that appears on page 3. Also, note the corrected date for the Pizza Party/Meeting: Thursday, February 12th. CTCC provides the PIZZA!

With the New Year upon us, it is time for this column to extend a sincere note of appreciation to the countless members who have contributed stories, articles and photos to B-N during 2008! A special mention for Liz Werth who has submitted event photos and prepared layouts - such as the Holiday Party announcement that appeared on page 10 of the November 2008 issue.

Anticipating a milestone auction selling price for the "005" 1955 Thunderbird owned by the late George Watts, all eyes will be on the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale this month. The story of the "Number 1 Production T-Bird" is outlined on page 9. What will the No Reserve $$ be?

Sadly, 2008 marked the passing of Joan Mrozek and Bernice Kuxhause and CTC! member Lois Eminger. We also noted the untimely loss of Chuck Maddox III, a former member of CTCC.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Helping Others

All-Member Philanthropic Opportunity

The People's Resource Center (PRC) in Wheaton has welcomed low-income residents by offering them complimentary services to meet their basic needs. Most visitors first come to utilize the PRC food pantry, and from there are connected to other services. After a short meeting with a trained volunteer, they are greeted by a food pantry volunteer and given a grocery cart. The PRC food pantry is full-choice and there is an abundance of food to choose from. Clients select the types of food their family eats, depending on health issues, culture and taste. By the time they fill their cart, they've received approximately $100 of fresh fruit and vegetables, frozen meat, bakery items, canned goods and non-perishable food items.

Bill and Liz Werth have been volunteering once a week in the food pantry. They have noticed a void in what is available for the clients. Often there are few or no personal hygiene items in the "take one" bin. Items in this bin are full size toiletries: shampoo, hairspray, deodorant, hand cream, razor, etc.

The CTCC Board voted to ask members to bring, to CTCC membership meetings, items to help fill this bin. All donations will be appreciated and delivered to PRC for distribution to those who are less fortunate. Visit to learn more.

Monday, February 9, 2009

CTCC Library Now Available

Classic Thunderbird Club of Chicagoland
The Club library program is for the benefit of the membership. It is accessible to any CTCC member as a resource of reference material. A list of the library inventory is available on the CTCC website, at all club meetings or upon request from the club librarian. Material withdrawn from the library will be for a period of one month or longer upon request. A nominal cash deposit may be required for withdrawal of certain irreplaceable items.

Due to the generosity of present and former members, extra inventory of CTCI Early Bird and Roster issues are "for sale." Whether a new or old member, now is the time to begin your collection, or find that missing issue. Cost: $2.50 per issue, or $2.00 for (5) or more plus postage. All funds derived from the sale of extra inventory are for the support of CTCC.

The club is always appealing to the membership for Thunderbird donations of literature, photos, videos, CDs, etc. If any of this type of material is sitting around gathering dust in your basement or garage, now is the time to donate it. The club would greatly appreciate the gesture.

Questions, withdrawals, or donations regarding the library, should be directed to our club librarian. Contact: Bob Wenderski, Tel: 847-234-2394, Email:

CTCC Library Inventory List

[As of 2/23/2009]

1.) 1955 Ford Car Manual
2.) 1956 Ford Car Manual
3.) 1957 Ford Car Manual
4.) 1955 Fordmatic Shop Manual
5.) 1956/1957 Fordmatic Shop Manual
6.) 1949/1959 Illustration Catalog (Form FD 9463)
7.) 1949/1959 Text Catalog (Form FD 9462)
8.) 1960/1964 Illustration Catalog (Form AF 7682)
9.) 1960/1964 Text Catalog (Form AF 7681)
10.) 1953/1957 Car & Truck Body Parts Catalog (Form 7422) Missing
11.) 1957 Ford Supercharger Manual (old faded/new) 2 copies
12.) 1955 Motorola Radio Service Manual (FDH-18805-B)
13.) 1956 Motorola Radio Service Manual (FEH-18805-B)
14.) 1957 Motorola Radio Service Manual (FEJ-18806-C) 3 copies
15.) 1955 Four Barrel Downdraft Holley Carb. Manual Model 4000 (C-228)
16.) 1956 Four Barrel Downdraft Holley Carb. Manual Model 4000 (C-228-1)
17.) 1957 Holley Carb. Service Manual Model 4150 (C-240) 3 copies
18.) 1955, 1956, 1957 T-Bird Electrical Equipment Installation Manual
19.) 1955, 1956, 1957 T-Bird Trim and Sealer Manual
20.) 1957 T-Bird Specification Manual
21.) 1960/1964 Lincoln-Mercury Car Parts Master Catalog (LM-8281-C-64) (LM-8281-B-64)
22.) 1960/1964 Autolite-Ford Car Parts Master Catalog Price List (FP-3636A)
23.) 1960/1970 Autolite-Ford Car Parts Master Catalog (AF-7635E)
24.) 1960/1970 Autolite-Ford Master Parts & Accessories Illustration Catalog (AF-7635B)
25.) Delco/Remy Care, Maintenance and Testing of Batteries (Service Bulletin #7D-55893- C 1969)
26.) Ditzler (PPG) Repair Manual Form #6199
27.) Automotive Refinishing Manual by 3M
28.) Morton Paint Company, Text Section #1 - Repair & Refinish Plastic Parts
29.) Morton Paint Company, Text Section #2 - All Types Prep & Repairs 2 copies
30.) Morton Paint Company, Text Section #3 - Color Matching, Masking, etc.
31.) 1993-1997 (First Edition) CTCC Tech-Tip Manual
32.) 1998-2000 (Second Edition) CTCC Tech-Tip Manual
33.) 1950-1965 Ford Products Interchange Manual
34.) 1955-1993 Catalog of Thunderbird ID Numbers
35.) 1956 Dual Quad Thunderbird Specification Manual and magazine articles
36.) 1957 T-Bird Sales Literature (3 copies)
37.) 1955 Owner-s Manual Form 7513-55
38.) 1956 Owner-s Manual Form 7513-56
39.) 1957 Owner-s Manual Form 7513-75
40.) CTCI Restoration Manual (with) Addendums A thru G

1.) "Thunderbird - An Illustrated History of the Ford T-Bird" By Pat Miller
2.) "The Complete Ford Book" Petersen Publishing Co., Copyright 1970
3.) "Rock, Roll & Remember" By Dick Clark and Richard Robinson
4.) "All The Facts About the 1955 Ford" Fomoco Publication
5.) "All The Facts About the 1956 Ford" Fomoco Publication
6.) "All The Facts About the 1957 Ford" Fomoco Publication
7.) "The Three Little Thunderbirds, 1955-1957: The Design Story"
8.) "Ford T-Bird" by Malcolm Birkitt
9.) "Thunderbird 1955-1957" by R. M. Clarke
10.) "Thunderbird 1955-1966" by Alan Tast
11.) "Ford Chronicle" by James M. Flammang and David L. Lewis
12.) "Y-Block Book" includes casting numbers, rebuild procedures, parts list, service bulletins, etc.
13.) "Milestones" by Mike Mueller
14.) "Caring For A Legend - The George Watts Story" by Mike Kooiman
15.) "The Fords, An American Epic" by Peter Collier and David Horovitz
16.) "The Complete History Of The Ford Motor Company" by Richard M. Langworth
17.) "Thunderbird Chronicles" by Publication International, LTD
18.) "Soaring Spirit- 35 years of the Ford Thunderbird" by John Katz

19.) "2002 Thunderbird" by Michael Lamm

1.) 1957 Thunderbird Convertible Top Weatherstrip Installation and Adjustment - Model #BAN-40A (Effective date 9/24/56)
2.) 1955, 1956 Wire Wheel Installation Illustration - Reprint by CTCI #121
3.) 1955 Promotional - Reprint by CTCI (1/55)

4.) 1955 Ford and Thunderbird Quick Facts
5.) 1956 Promotional - Form #A-2418 (6/55)

6.) 1955, 1956, 1957 Auto Color Library Color Charts
7.) 1955 Thunderbird Field Modifications
8.) 1957 Ford Thunderbird Specs and Engine 11/08/56
9.) 1957 Promotional - reprint by CTCI (2/57) - Form #FD-7705
10.) 1966 Edition Rotunda Oil and Lubrication Guide - Vol. 66, PSM L8D
11.) 1966 And Earlier Passenger Cars - "Hygrade" Carburetor and Ignition
12.) 1997 T-Bird (new car brochure) - the last year
13.) Thunderbird Illustrated (set)
1974 Fall - Volume 1 - #1
1975 Winter - Volume 1 - #2
1975 Spring - Volume 1 - #3
1975 Summer - Volume 1 - #4
1975 Fall - Volume 2 - #1
1976 Winter - Volume 2 - #2
1976 Spring - Volume 2 - #3
1976 Summer - Volume 2 - #4 - Missing
14.) 1957 T-Bird Tune-Up Specification Chart

1.) 1955 Silver Anniversary Limited Edition Reproductions by Shay (1980)
2.) 1957 Thunderbird Classic brochure by Motor Car Reproduction Corporation (1980)
3.) 1955 reproduction advertisement - 11/8/81 (The Life Newspaper)
4.) 1957 reproduction by Renaissance Motors, Inc.
5.) 1981 newspaper article regarding similarity 1981 Ford Exp. And Mercury LN7, with the 1955 Thunderbird
6.) 1981 Fifth Third Bank Advertisement - Dayton, Ohio
7.) 1969 postcard of "Street of Old San Juan" with red and white T-Bird (DT-55893-C)
8.) 1993 Spring Hammacher Schlemmer front cover layout of Red '57 T-Bird owned by CTCC member Jeff Janisch
9.) 1993 April 6 Bob Greene's column "How to Engineer a Comeback"
10.) 1955 Chanel advertisement
11.) 1997 March 1 article Chicago Tribune [Business section] by Jim Mateja
12.) 1997 December 21 article Chicago Tribune [Transportation section] by Jeff Wilson
13.) 1999 January 2 article Chicago Tribune [Transportation section] by Jim Mateja
14.) 2002 Thunderbird New Car Brochures
15.) 2005 Thunderbird New Car Brochures

1.) December 1955- Motor Trend, page 50-51 (T-Bird Spotlight)
2.) May 1955- Auto Age, page 11-13 (Proving Ground Report)
3.) Annual 1955- Sports Cars of 1955 page 48-49
4.) November 1972 Hemmings Motor News (1956 T-Bird Cover Car)
5.) August 1990 Classic Auto Restorer, page 22-32
6.) October 1993 Cars And Parts, page 22-26 (Tucker)
7.) December 1993 Cars And Parts, page 22-26 ('53 Corvette)
8.) March 1994 Cars And Parts, page 22, ('62 T-Bird Sport Roadster)
9.) August 1994 Cars And Parts, page 20, ('60 T-Bird Convertible)
10.) October 1994 Auto Restorer, page 14-21, page 22-25
11.) November 1994 Cars And Parts, page 20-24 (Nash Healey)
12.) March 1996 Cars And Parts, page 60, ('58 T-Bird Stainless Steel T-Bird)
13.) July 1997 Cars And Parts, page 10, ('57 T-Bird (Mel Blanc) Supercharger)
14.) October 1997 Cars And Parts, page 10-15 ('57 Chevy Belair Convertible)
15.) November 1997 Motor Trend, page 104, Bye Bye T-Bird

16.) June 1998- Car and Driver, page 38-42 (The New T-bird)
17.) January 2003 Automotive News, page 1 and page 12
18.) February 2005 Cars And Parts, page 20-28 and page 32-37
19.) March 2005 Old Cars Weekly, page 6

20.) August 2000- Auto World, page 16-17 (The New T-Bird)
21.) October 2000- Car and Driver, page 38-42 (New T-Bird preview)
22.) June 2001- Automobile Collectable, page 18-21 (Vicky) and page 40 (T-Bird)
23.) July 2001- Motor Trend, page 36-46 )2002 Test Drive)
24.) August 2001- Road and Track, page 52-57 (2002 Road Test)
25.) June 2002- Motor Trend, page 56-63 (Car of the Year) and page 136 (Rare Bird S.C.)
26.) March 2005- Old Cars Weekly, page 6
27.) March 2007- Cars and Parts, page 14-17 (1957 "F" Bird) and page 44-48 (The Battle Bird)
28.) July 2007- Hemmings Classic Car, page 14-33 (History of the Thunderbird)
29.) March 2008- Cars and Parts, page 14-17 (Born To Cruise)

1.) 1968: Apr. - May - Sept. - Oct. - Nov.
2.) 1969: Apr. - July - Oct. - Dec.
3.) 1970: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - Aug. - Oct. - Nov.
4.) 1979: Mar.
5.) 1990: July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
6.) 1991: Jan.- Feb.- Mar.- Apr.- June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
7.) 1992: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - June - July - Aug.- Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
8.) 1993: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov.
9.) 1994: Dec.
10.) 1995: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
11.) 1996: Jan. - Mar. - Apr. - May - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov.
12.) 1997: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
13.) 1998: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
14.) 1999: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
15.) 2000: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
16.) 2001: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
17.) 2002: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
18.) 2003: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
19.) 2004: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
20.) 2005: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
21.) 2006: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.

22.) 2007: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
23.) 2008: Jan. - Feb. - Mar. - Apr. - May - June - July - Aug. - Sept. - Oct. - Nov. - Dec.
24.) 2009: Jan. - Feb. -

1.) 1984, 1985, 1986 "Birds in the Dells"
2.) 1992 Christmas, plus 1993 Spring Tour, Galena, Illinois; 1993 CTCI Headquarters, California; 1993 Fall Tour, Holy Hill, Wisconsin; and 1994 Spring Tour Part 1.
3.) 1993 Spring Tour Part 2, plus 1994 March 20 T-Bird Breakfast, Capizzi Car Collection and Meeting; plus 1994 July 26 On the way to Dearborn, Michigan CTCI Nationals Part l
4.) 1994 July CTCI National Convention "40 Years of Thunder" Part 2, plus 1994 August 21 Thunderbird Picnic at the Parrs; 1994 October 2 At the Arlington International Race Track; 1995 Regional Ad Book cover photo (Kneebone '55, Johnson '56, Server '57); and 1994 October 8 Fall Tour Michigan.
5.) 1995 Chicagoland Regional, plus 1995 September 9 Oak Park, Illinois mall show; and 1995 Spring Tour, Iowa with Duffy's Auto Sales Showroom.
6.) 1992 Spring Tour, plus 1993 Spring Tour, Galena, Illinois; and 1995 Chicagoland Regional.
7.) 1994 "The Early Birds" Armour Productions.
8.) 1991 July 31 (and August) CTCI Regional, Dayton, Ohio.
9.) 1992 "Romancing the Classics"
10.) 1989 CTCI Regional, Chicago, Illinois, plus 1991 CTCI Regional, Dayton, Ohio; and 1992 CTCI Nationals, Tulsa, Oklahoma.
11.) 1992 CTCI Nationals, Tulsa, Oklahoma
12.) 1991 Felix Natoli "1956 Dual Quad Demo"
13.) 1990 Amos Minter "T-Birds for Sale video"
14.) 1997 CTCC in review, plus 1996 December 7 Christmas Party; 1997 January 19 Como Inn and Dinner Play, Chicago, Illinois; 1997 May 3-4 Spring Tour, Dodgeville, Wisconsin; 1997 June 4-7 CTCI Regional, Des Moines, Iowa; 1997 August 23 Annual Club Picnic (Parrs); and 1997 October 3-5 Fall Tour, Springfield, Illinois.
15.) 2002 CD "The Ford Thunderbird - An American Icon"

16.) This is Auburn DVD- donated by Perry Anthony
17.) Fabulous Fords of the 50's DVD
18.) CASCO- How to Recover your Ford Thunderbird Soft Top DVD
19.) Barrington IL. 9/10/2005- 50's Sporty Cars Stamp Dedication.

Index - Composite Index 1963 to 1995 (1995 is the last year to-date)
Vol 1 - 1963: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 2 - 1964: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 3 - 1965: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 4 - 1966: Jan./Feb. - Mar./Apr. - July/Aug. - Sept./Oct. - Nov./Dec. (Missing May/June)
Vol 5 - 1967: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 6 - 1968: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 7 - 1969: Jan./Feb. & Mar./Apr. combined - May/June - July/Aug. - Sept./Oct. - Nov./Dec. (5 issues complete)
Vol 8 - 1970: Jan./Feb. - Mar./Apr. - May/June - July/Sept. - Oct./Dec. (5 issues complete)
Vol 9 - 1971: Jan./Mar. - Apr./June - July/Aug. - Sept./Dec. (4 issues complete)
Vol 10 - 1972: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 11 - 1973: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 12 - 1974: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 13 - 1975: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 14 - 1976: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 15 - 1977: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 16 - 1978: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 17 - 1979: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 18 - 1980: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 19 - 1981: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 20 - 1982: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issue
Vol 21 - 1983: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 22 - 1984: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 23 - 1985: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 24 - 1986: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 25 - 1987: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 26 - 1988: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 27 - 1989: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 28 - 1990: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 29 - 1991: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 30 - 1992: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 31 - 1993: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 32 - 1994: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 33 - 1995: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 34 - 1996: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 35 - 1997: Complete set of six (6) issues -Extra issues
Vol 36 - 1998: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 37 - 1999: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 38 - 2000: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 39 - 2001: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 40 - 2002: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 41 - 2003: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 42 - 2004: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 43 - 2005: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 44 - 2006: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 45 - 2007: Complete set of six (6) issues
Vol 46 - 2008: Complete set of six (6) issues

11.) 1973: CTCI Membership Roster
12.) 1974: CTCI Membership Roster
13.) 1975: CTCI Membership Roster
14.) 1976: CTCI Membership Roster
15.) 1977: CTCI Membership Roster
16.) 1978: CTCI Membership Roster
17.) 1979: CTCI Membership Roster
18.) 1980: CTCI Membership Roster
19.) 1981: CTCI Membership Roster
20.) 1982: CTCI Membership Roster (Missing)
21.) 1983: CTCI Membership Roster
22.) 1984: CTCI Membership Roster
24.) 1986: CTCI Membership Roster
25.) 1987: CTCI Membership Roster
26.) 1988: CTCI Membership Roster
27.) 1989: CTCI Membership Roster
28.) 1990: CTCI Membership Roster
29.) 1991: CTCI Membership Roster
30.) 1992: CTCI Membership Roster
31.) 1993: CTCI Membership Roster
32.) 1994: CTCI Membership Roster
33.) 1995: CTCI Membership Roster
34.) 1996: CTCI Membership Roster
35.) 1997: CTCI Membership Roster
36.) 1998: CTCI Membership Roster
37.) 1999: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)
38.) 2000: CTCI Membership Roster
39.) 2001: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)
40.) 2002: CTCI Membership Roster
41.) 2003: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)
42.) 2004: CTCI Membership Roster
43.) 2005: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)

44.) 2006: CTCI Membership Roster
45.) 2007: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)
46.) 2008: CTCI Membership Roster
47.) 2009: CTCI Membership Roster (N/A)

1.) 1995 Activity Photo Album
2.) 1982 Chicagoland Regional Program Books (9 copies)
3.) 1996-1997 Activity Photo Album
4.) 1993 April 3 Bylaws of the Classic Thunderbird Club of Chicagoland
5.) 1995 August 16-20 Regional Convention Records

6.) 1995 August 16-20 Regional Program Book
7.) Extra copies of CTCC Tech-Tip Manuals (For Sale) (2 copies)

8.) 2000 July 26-30 National Convention Records
9.) 2000 July 26-30 Natioinal Program Book
10.) 2005 August 20 Baby Bird Birthday Bash (B-4) Program Book

New or Old Members: Now is the time to begin your collection, or find that missing issue!
$2.50 Per Issue, or $2.00 for (5) or more + Postage
All funds derived from the sale of these issues, are for the support of CTCC.

The Club library program is for the benefit of the membership. It is accessible to any CTCC member as a resource of reference material. Questions, withdrawals, or donations regarding the library, should be directed to our club librarian. Contact: Bob Wenderski, Tel: 847-234-2394, Email:

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Tech Tip - Accelerator Pedal and Throttle Rod Adjustment

Accelerator Pedal and Throttle Rod Adjustment

As promised in last month's article on how to adjust your Automatic Transmission, Ken Smizinski has provided the following instructions on how to adjust your throttle rod and your accelerator pedal.

After adjusting your Automatic Transmission as detailed in last month's "Tech Tip", you may also check your pedal height clearance to the floor as well as your throttle rod. Both adjustments are made with your 1/4" dowel or 1/4" drill bit placed into the pilot holes on both sides of the bell crank. The clearance specified for your accelerator pedal is 4 1/4" from the top of the pedal to the floor for 1955 and 1956 Thunderbirds. 1957 Thunderbirds have a pedal clearance of 4 7/8". The adjustment to your pedal height is made by lengthening or shortening part #9748 for 1955 and 1956 Thunderbirds. For 1957 Thunderbirds, the part number is #9784. Refer to the attached diagram for exact locations. Make sure your accelerator linkage remains straight during adjustment. Any lateral movements of the linkage could give you an improper height reading.

The throttle rod is adjusted via part #9772 for 1955 and 1956 Thunderbirds, and part #9747 for 1957 Thunderbirds. Make sure your engine is warm so that your choke is disengaged. Once the choke has disengaged, set the length of your throttle linkage so that the butterfly valves on your carburator's primary venturi are completely closed. From this point, adjust your idle screw so that your car idles smoothly or according to your owner's manual specifications, whichever you prefer. Make sure, however, your idle is not set too high. Too fast an idle can damage the center support inside your transmission. Many a Thunderbird's center transmission support has been cracked by a high idle. When the car is put in reverse, the inevitable "slam" into gear creates enough force to crack the metal support. Over time, this support will separate and eventually cause transmission failure.

Don't forget to remove your 1/4" dowel or 1/4" drill bit when you have completed your adjustments.

Source: CTCC Tech-Tip Manual 1993-1997

Tech Tip - Automatic Trans Shift Adjustment

Automatic Transmission Shift Adjustment

The 1955-57 Thunderbirds, with Automatic Transmission, use a mechanical transmission shifting mechanism. The speed at which your transmission shifts from one gear to another is determined by the length of your kickdown rod. You can vary the shift of your transmission by increasing or decreasing the length of this rod. In cars of more recent vintage, including your "daily driver", your transmission is shifted using vacuum power or electronically via your onboard computer. The speed at which your Thunderbird's transmission should first shift should be at approximately 28 miles per hour. If your Thunderbird has its correct engine and transmission the following information will allow you to adjust the shift of your transmission. Once again, I thank Mr. Ken Smizinski for providing me with this month's "tech tip."

To adjust the shift of your automatic transmission you must first locate your kickdown rod. This is labeled part number 7A187 in the accompanying diagrams. It is located on the driver's side of the engine and rises up from the base of the firewall and attaches to your bell crank, part number 7A185, which is attached to the rear of your intake manifold. You should notice that at the point where your kickdown rod is attached to your bell crank there is a threaded adjusting rod which when screwed onto the kickdown rod allows for the necessary length adjustment. This part is labeled 97011-S and 7354 in the accompanying diagrams. You can remove your kickdown rod from the bell crank by removing the cotter pin from the adjusting rod. The kickdown rod should slide right off of the bell crank once the cotter pin has been removed.

With the kickdown rod removed from the bell crank you should be able to see a set of "pilot holes" on each side of the bell crank. By pivoting the two parts of the bell crank you should be able to align these "pilot holes" so that you can place a 1/4" dowel or 1/4" drill bit through the pilot holes on both sides of the bell crank. With this done, you have found your preset alignment point for your transmission as well as your throttle rod and accelerator peddle clearance. For right now, however, we are only concerned with your transmission. Next month, with help from Ken Smizinski, I will attempt to explain how to adjust your throttle rod and accelerator peddle.

The point at which you can place a 1/4" dowel or 1/4" drill bit through the pilot holes in your bell crank is the point at which the engineers of your Thunderbird provided you with a preset alignment position. From this point your kickdown rod should be two and one-half turns counter-clockwise, "longer," than a perfect slide-on fit back onto your bell crank. To better explain this, if you pull up on your kickdown rod and try to attach it to your bell crank housing, you should adjust the length of the kickdown rod so that you have to push it down only so slightly. This can be measured by lengthening the rod enough so that it just slides back onto the bell crank when the kickdown rod is pulled up. Once you have found this point, lengthen the rod by turning the adjusting rod two and one-half turns counter-clockwise so that the kickdown rod is just slightly too long. You will be able to slide it onto the bell crank, but you will have to push the kickdown rod down ever so slightly. At this point you will have adjusted your Thunderbird's transmission to shift according to factory specifications. Your Thunderbird should shift at 28 miles per hour.

Don't forget to replace your cotter pin!!

Source: CTCC Tech-Tip Manual 1993-1997

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Spring Tour 2009 Planned

Classic Thunderbird Club of Chicagoland

Galena, Illinois
May 1 - 3, 2009

Your tour pre-payment covers a tour of Galena on the "Cherry Red Trolley" with visits to The Dowling House and The Belvedere House and Gardens and a Mississippi River dinner cruise on a million dollar yacht.

On Sunday we will have a late buffet breakfast at the famous Desoto House Hotel (separate checks).

We will stay near Galena at the Stoney Creek Inn
Room rate: $94 (plus tax) per night
Phone: 1-800-659-2220
(Mention CTCC - Classic Thunderbird Club of Chicagoland)
(Reserve your room before April 1 to guarantee the rate)
"Expanded Continental Breakfast" is included in the room rate.
We will have a hospitality room at the Inn both evenings.
We will have a CTCC sponsored pizza party at the Inn on Friday evening.

The per person tour pre-payment total is $67.
Tour participants must reserve by April 10.

Please send your check, payable to CTCC, to:
Liz & Bill Werth
22W413 Ironwood Drive
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137

When we receive your check, we will contact you with instructions about where
to meet on Friday, May 1. Please include your phone number with your check.