1955 Hudson Wasp

supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
I just brought this 1955 Wasp, its got 47,000 miles on it, 202 with hyrdramatic. The engine runs real smooth and clean. The body is solid, just one rust spot along the bottom of the right rear door. Came with 3 Hudson service manuals incl. the transmission manual.  From what I see, It has had a new head gasket, wires, plugs, gas line and filter at the tank end, rear shocks, brake flex lines. All of the lights are working except for the under dash lamp and missing bulb for the glove box lamp. I wound the clock and its keeping time.

It needs new tires. The temp gauge, radio, and heater blower are not working. The shifting is a little harsh.  The paint needs a good waxing and some touching and I'll live with it. I found some tires that seem to be tbe best available fit at walmart, Nankang 165/80R15. They are 25.6"OD, the stock spec is 6.70-15, 27" OD. 

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Comments

  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Nice! Welcome to the group. That looks like a solid car. I bet if you hit that paint with some polishing compound it will clean up really well. I'd go for wide whites as that would really set off the color combo, but I know they aren't cheap.

    See the source image
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Yea they are pricey. The manual states SAE 20 oil for lower temp use, I havent found any, at 48,000 miles is it best to stick with straight grade or could I use a multi grade oil? I want to use the car in decent weather if the roads are clear of salt.
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Ahh, the age old oil debate. Here is one of our recent conversations on the topic. https://forum.hetclub.org/discussion/346621/oil-recommendation-for-52-308/p1
    Higher zinc content oil is popular. Actually, my engine builder recommended I continue with high zinc formulations even after the rebuild. Weight is probably less crucial since most modern oil has great temperature range coverage. My engine builder steered me to Mobil Delvac 1300 10W-30. It has decent zinc levels and more than covers temp ranges I'll ever drive in. 
  • Jon BJon B Posts: 7,135Administrator
    I use oil with extra zinc in it, but the most important thing for you is just to get some fresh oil of any type, into it.  The "zinc thing" you can agonize over later.   Unless you know that the car has had its oil changed regularly, I'd drain the old oil immediately, fill with some nice multi-grade oil, and change the oil filter.

    As to the electrical components that aren't working, it's possible that a fuse has blown.  Of course, if that's true, then there's a reason it has blown, and you'll have to address that.  What is the condition of your wiring?  If the old insulation is flaking off, you should start to replace the bad sections with new wires.  Or, if you have an unlimited budget, you can get a new wiring harness.  I would suggest, however, that you install some sort of battery cut-off switch so you can kill the battery whenever you're not using the car. 
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Jon has a good point about getting the current fluids out. You may want to do the same with the fluid in the Hydra since you indicated harsh shifting. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    The oil on the dipstick didnt look or smell bad, the antifreeze tested good for +5 deg. Havent checked the atf yet. It doesnt have an oil filter. That may limit me to nondetergent. I will change all 3 fluids. This weekend I can get some work done on it. I did get to wash it this morning and oil the hinges tonight. 
    The wiring looks fine. I did identify the fuse that is described in the manual but havent put a meter to anything yet.
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Sounds promising. It's possible the radio is your fuse blower. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Your Wasp looks pretty sweet, I would have liked an orange interior. 
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    supercub said:
    Your Wasp looks pretty sweet, I would have liked an orange interior. 
    Oh, that's just a picture I grabbed from online since it was the same color combo and had wide whites. I have stepdowns.
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Stepdowns are cool, I like the rear sweeps. Ive been looking for Type A or plain Dextron ATF, havent found any. Also, pan gaskets for the engine and trans., locally, not available. 
    Found a blown fuse in the radio, no continuity on the blower fan, I have to pull it out. I would imagine its fixable, probably locked in place, in need of cleaning, lubing, brushes.
  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,011Expert Adviser
    edited November 8
    Dale Cooper and Kanter for Gaskets
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    I found an oil pan gasket on Dales website. Going to order tomorrow. I put a fuse in the radio, holding in with an alligator clip and powered it up with a 6V motorcycle battery. The fuse started to glow so I pulled it right out.
  • cheyenne7271cheyenne7271 Posts: 169Member
    Just use Dexron III in the hydro, nothing newer and don’t use Type F
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Ah, fun with radios too. I'd bet the capacitors are shot. That's not uncommon for a tube radio that old. You can either rebuild it or just disconnect it. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Dextron III is fine, I'll use that. The radio will be a future project, It may have a shorted transformer and caps for sure.
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Does anyone know how the fuel tank is vented? When I went to look at the car, the gauge read full and I could smell gas when I was looking underneath the rear but didnt find any liquid gas on the tank. When I went to test drive it, the dealer that was selling it for the PE didnt think the gauge was working, so he went up the street to fill a gas can to add some to be safe. When he was gone, I turned the key on and off a few times and the gauge went slowly up to full. He tried to add gas but the car wouldnt take any more. I told him it was full and the gauge worked but he was skeptical. When the car was delivered, it was on the trailer on a hill and gas was leaking out around the pickup tube area. The next morning I pumped  about 10 gallons out into another car and the smell went away, the gauge now reads about 3/4 full. Not sure if the gas was leaking from a hidden vent tube, the puckup tube, hose or from the sender flange. I removed the access cover in the trunk,  didnt see signs of gas on the top of the tank.
  • GlowplugGlowplug Posts: 2,011Expert Adviser
    This is a link to the maintenance manual for the 1955 Hudsons.... it explains how the gas gauge operates as well how the Gas tank is plumbed.   http://hudsonterraplane.com/tech/1955/1955_Hudson_Service_Manual.pdf


  • Nevada HudsonNevada Hudson Posts: 1,207Senior Contributor

    Valvoline Racing Oil has zinc. You can try 10-30, and Napa sells it or you can find it on Amazon.

    The 55-57 Hudsons have much better wiring, as they are rubber coated, unlike the  Jefferson Avenue Hudsons which had cloth covered wiring that didn't last.

  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    I'll take a look at NAPA tomorrow. Glowplug, I have the manual, it explains gauge testing but I dont see anything related to the tank except capacity nothing showing fuel lines and tank venting. There is a steel NAPA inline filter between the tank and steel fuel line.
  • GeoffGeoff Posts: 4,017Senior Contributor
    202 motors do not need zinc, so any modern multigrade is much better than a straight 30 weight.   I use 20W-50 in mine.  Just to re-assure Jon,  zinc is essential for all 6 and 8 splasher engines.   Step-down and Jet motors have rotating cam followers, so not prone to wear at all.   It would  do no harm to have zinc, but is not essential. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Going to use 10W30. I took tbis mugshot of it on a foggy morning. Shows off tbe wrap-around glass and chrome. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    I got my heater motor almost completed. I found some brushes at a hardware store and have the motor parts cleaned and ready to assemble with new wiring. Heater box and exchanger are cleaned, ready to assemble. 
    Coolant drained,  New coolant hoses ready to to go in.
     I Waxed it today, I got lucky with the weather, I had just enough time before the sun set. The right side was repainted at some point, the paint quality isnt as good as the stock but overall it looks very presentable.
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    That's really cool you were able to find brushes locally. That's unusual, I think. My hardware store sure doesn't have that kind of stuff.
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    They are .25" square, standard size. with the leads coming out of the back, the originals had them on the side but it doesnt matter. They came with springs, the old ones were rusted. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    The new cover fit perfect. 
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Got the cooling system all buttoned up and filled it with coolant today, took it for a spin. Getting new tires tomorrow. 
  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Sticking with the black walls?
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    Yes blackwall radials
  • supercubsupercub Posts: 33Member
    The first real roadtrip-
    I sprung a radiator leak on my way to my 8:00 appointment at the tire place at Walmart. On top of that, I got there and found out that they changed their hours and were closed. I got a call from them later on explaining the descrepancy. I will pick them up and have them changed somewhere closer to my house as I dont feel good about dtiving on the old tires.
    One of the radiator fins gave in, it looks like a few of them have been repaired. I could have the radiator recored, does anyone know of anyone who could do it?
    I just made it home with the coolant I had in  it, the leak was about 6" from the bottom so it held coolant to that point and the temp didnt climb that much. I had brought 3 gals of water just in case I needed it.
    Also while on the road, a slight misfire seemed to get worse upon acceleration from the start. Once under way or under heavy acceleration it is smooth and doesnt backfire. 

  • superwaspsuperwasp Posts: 73Member
    Bummer. On the radiator issue, it depends if there's a decent radiator shop near you that can do re-cores. It should be an easy job for a pro shop. The other option is to install a new radiator that happens to fit. I'm not sure what the interchange is for Nash bodied Hudsons, though. 
    Is your misfire actually a misfire or more of a stumble? Are you running a single carb?
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