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  • Breather cap

    Anyone have a method of reducing breather cap mess. 1931 Coupe.

  • #2
    Hey Aretino, WELCOME to the VFF.

    Now, what do you mean by Breather Mess? If you are talking about crankcase blow-by, then replacing the rings can help, or letting the oil level drop a bit below full, say ¼" won't hurt.

    But more often it is due to compression gasses getting past the rings building up pressure in the crankcase and the only way to fix that is a ring job.
    You wana look waaay far up da road and plan yer route because the brakes are far more of a suggestion than a command!


    • #3
      A compression test may help here, if low it could mean worn rings

      any blue smoke out the pipe?

      good idea Wiz to drop the oil level a bit, often have to do that to keep the oil from squirting from the rear main


      • #4
        Welcome to the VFF!
        Don't mean to sound rude..."Put a sock on it!" Lol. Seriously!
        Twiss Collector Car Parts


        • #5
          I may be running the oil level higher than needed. I think I will change the oil and note where the level is after adding 4.5 quarts. I have read that capacity is 5 quarts but most owners refill with 4.5 quarts. Just getting a bit of oil on the coolant hose just below and aft of the breather. Picked up this 1931 coupe recently and just love driving and tinkering. Thanks for your responses.


          • Chuck Sea/Tac
            Chuck Sea/Tac commented
            Editing a comment
            I have always drained 4quarts out, and put 4quarts back in. My dip stick shows right on the full mark.

        • #6
          Welcome Aretino to the VFF!

          As mentioned a worn motor can cause excess crankcase pressures to exit the fill pipe. Usually you’ll notice other oil leaks, as the pressure can push the oil out of other areas.
          You may want to check and make sure that you have the updated oil fill tube. Note the baffle differences between the two. (See attached pic, Service Bulletins) Another way to keep the mist from making a mess is to install one of these down draft tubes.

          The oil mist is a common issue with these animals even with a good engine..
          3 ~ Tudor's
          Henry Ford said
          "It's all nuts and bolts"

          Mitch's Auto Service ctr


          • #7
            If the dip stick isn't installed correctly it will also make a mess !


            • #8
              I figure the dipstick has been withdrawn and inserted many times over the years and the full level mark may need to be checked with a known quantity. I realize these engines breath freely. Thanks!


              • #9
                The 5 quart capacity is only after removing the pan and cleaning everything well. I usually only put in 4 quarts per oil change since the dipper tray holds about a quart. Try just using 4 and see where the level is.
                You wana look waaay far up da road and plan yer route because the brakes are far more of a suggestion than a command!


                • jordanka16
                  jordanka16 commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I put in 4 quarts as well, it also makes it very convenient as I use Delo and it comes in gallons.

              • #10
                there are also several similar looking dipsticks out there, but only one correct one. has pix of this.
                The 5 QT capacity includes the QT that resides in the dipper tray, so if you refill with 4.5, you are already too much.
                Fill 3.5, and check the stick
                We usually put a fresh file mark on the stick when we overhaul a motor, and we put the customary 1st QT down the dizzy hole to fill the dipper tray, and then add 4 more to the sump, then run it, and after we shut it off, and let it all drain down, then we re-mark the stick.
                But this is on a fresh overhaul so we are not concerned with being 'too full' as it were because the rings are new and tight and there is limited blow-by

                oops Wiz types faster


                • #11
                  4 quarts is where I will stop first and note level on stick. Thanks


                  • #12
                    I will try 3.5 first and see if this helps and will also check to see if my breather/ filler tube has the latest baffle confg. Great advice!


                    • Mitch
                      Mitch commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Just be careful. I'm not a proponent to run a crankcase low on oil.

                  • #13
                    OK, I am gonna revise my advice, since we have no idea how much oil is really in there right now.
                    Drain out the old, put in 4 Qts fresh, which is the max unless the dipper tray has been emptied, and mark the stick with a file
                    (at this point it doesn't matter what stick you have because you are gonna make your own mark),
                    and then try it and see what happens. It may already be over 4 qts, not everyone knows about the qt in the dipper tray


                    • #14
                      Per your #5 statement: ........ "Picked up this 1931 coupe recently" ......... I often wonder if all buyers ask the former owner if he/she had any mechanical comments on past experiences or what to expect?

                      Probably not a similar ordeal; but I remember an old lady who asked a few simple questions prior to buying a late 1940's car in about 1955 that was later towed to her house.

                      After delivery, it would not start. She told her neighbor that the former owner told her the only thing wrong with it was that when he added a little water in the radiator, a little water started to exit the exhaust tailpipe.

                      That was (63) years ago ...... can anyone imagine what we can expect in 2018?

                      Never too cautious! LOL


                      • #15
                        In my case the previous owner spent allot of time telling me what he knew about the cars history and things to do that would keep the car in good shape. I worked on similar cars back in the early 60's so I was prepared. Previous owner passed on all the literature with the car and records. The car is 95% original and a great driver. The carburetor is not original but is a Zenith 13922. Seems to run a little rich especially at idle. Manifold pressure at idle is steady at 20. Plan to disassemble and inspect the carb next spring. I pulled all the wheels and inspected the brakes and bearings. Shock absorbers are worn out and looking to buy a new set from Bill Stipe. Thanks to all the forum members for sharing their knowledge


                        • H. L. Chauvin
                          H. L. Chauvin commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Seems like here on this VFF Site, we share an old time "something" that we Americans appear to be losing these days.

                          We are really glad to see others happy ............ and furthermore ...... we really care about trying to maintain an abundance of happiness with anyone trying to maintain his/her Model A.

                          Thanks for sharing thanks.

                      • #16
                        Update: drained oil and added 4qts. Wth 4qts. the dipstick level is 1/4" below full. Marked the 4qt level for future reference. My breather pipe is the old design, will consider changing to the new style. Engines always seem to run better with fresh oil ( mental thing).


                        • DaWizard
                          DaWizard commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Now wipe down the engine left side and take her for a few mile spin and see how that works!

                      • #17
                        We located a larger '32 style oil pipe which seems to work well. Finding the correct caps are difficult. The vendors sell a pricey larger pipe and the accessory extension pipes. Wouldn't suggest using copper mesh in the caps because I've seen some pieces fall into the oil pan.


                        • KenCoupe
                          KenCoupe commented
                          Editing a comment
                          When I bought my coupe, it had the 32 style oil pipe (what did I know back then?) and it works well. My understanding is the 32 oil pipe has a larger diameter with better baffles, but the bottom still fits the Model A block.

                      • #18
                        I put on a Stype filler tube with its filter cap and the engine stays much cleaner now. It's larger like the B tube.
                        1930 Sport Coupe, 1965 Lotus Elan


                        • #19
                          I've got a road draft tube.
                          Paul in CT


                          • Greynomad
                            Greynomad commented
                            Editing a comment
                            I used one of those on my Phaeton. After about 15-20,000 miles, the rivet holding the neoprene sealing disc and steel disc to the under side of the lid came out. I have no idea when it did - I found ity when I opened the lid and found the seal sitting on top of the filler tube and the steel disc down the tube. The remains of the rivet are sill down there somewhere. That was at least 10,000 miles ago. Maybe it is in the filter, maybe its laying in a corner somehwere but it hasn't found its way to the magnet in the drain plug.
                            I plan on using one on another car but the first thing I'll do is replace the rivet. I think they are poor quality and there is no way to secure the bottom end of the road tube other then to make a bracket and fix it to the engine mount.

                        • #20
                          After replacing the oil with 4 quarts the oil residue from the breather appears to be non-existant. Chilly here in northern Indiana now so thats keeping the engine temps down. When storing the car in my barn for the winter should I place it on jack stands and lower the tire pressures? Any other storage tips would be appreciated. Won't be driven from November thru April.


                          • DaWizard
                            DaWizard commented
                            Editing a comment
                            I say take it with you down to Tx and have a go at riding around with another crowd. I hear tell them folks in Texas are friendly enough.

                        • #21
                          We are, you know, that southern hospitality thing!

                          Up on jack stands is ideal, but leave the TP alone is what I would do


                          • #22
                            I use a road draft tube, which gets any most out of the engine compartment. After about 10,000 miles, the inside of the bottom end of the tube has a very light film, I detected with a white paper towel.


                            • Bikerider58
                              Bikerider58 commented
                              Editing a comment
                              I have an older version of the draft tube, but at the end I added an enlarger and filter ( motorcycle carb cone type)

                          • #23
                            I have one of these on my engine. Works great!
                            Alaskan A's
                            Antique Auto Mushers of Alaska
                            Model A Ford Club of America
                            Model A Restorers Club
                            Antique Automobile Club of America
                            Mullins Owners Club


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