6 volt system - 57 Willys

A friend recently acquired a 1957 Willys which has been sitting outside for about the last 25 years. It is all there, except for the seats, but still is about as rough as you might expect. It has a flat head Willys
four cylinder, and a six volt system. If it were mine, the first thing I'd want to do is to just see if I could get it running. Rough as it is, it would still be worth getting it going for fun just to tool around the rural area where he lives. But since it's a 6 volt system, how would you go about even start tinkering with it without buying a 6 volt battery for something you don't know if you'll ever end up driving or if it's even worth fixing? Any way to use a 12V battery and reduce the voltge, or etc.?
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Is it humid where you live? If so, the rings have almost certainly rusted firmly to the cylinders. Now this might not have happend, but it is very possible in 25 years. You can try turning the motor by putting a wrench on the end of the crank and try to turn it over.
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"blowout preventer" wrote
A friend recently acquired a 1957 Willys which has been sitting outside for about the last 25 years.
But since it's a 6 volt system, how would you go about even start tinkering with it without buying a 6 volt battery for something you don't know if you'll ever end up driving or if it's even worth fixing? Any way to use a 12V battery and reduce the voltge, or etc.?
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Once you get it running, you can convert it to 12V. First thing to do is see if the engine is turning. Use a wrench to see if it is free. If so, you can jump start it with 12V. If it is restorable, change out the bulbs, You may be able to find a 12V wiper motor, if not, I used a rheostat to control the speed of the wipers on my 6V Karmann Ghia. Not seeing the car I don't know what you have as a generator, but you can probably find a 12V to fit with a different bracket.
For anyone wondering, I used a GM alternator on the Ghia. A friend bored the shaft and threaded in (left hand) the same size as the generator shaft and threaded it on. We fabricated a bracket to hold it from spinning. It was a fun car to drive for a couple of years.
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On Sun, 24 Oct 2010 15:48:04 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@msn.com (blowout preventer) wrote:

You have many paths...
First, consider that it will have a higher value as a collectable than as a hacked apart and modified vehicle. So be very leary about converting to 12V if you wish to maintain the value of the vehicle.
As someone else said, see if the motor will turn over with a wrench on the crank. Before doing this, however, take out each plug, and spray a liberal dose of WD-40 into each plug hole. Lightly fingertighten each plug back in, and leave it sit for a day or two. (This prevents evaporation of the WD-40). Check and change the oil now, let it drain at least 12 hours to get the sludge that is at the bottom of the pan out. Pour in two to four quarts of cheap oil with the drain plug out to flush as much as you can from the pan. If it has a filter, replace the filter, cleaning the can carefully. When replacing the filter, make sure you fill the can with oil so that it isn't dry started. Fill with a good 15W-30 oil for the first start(s). After about an hour of running, (but check the oil's condition on the dip stick frequently as you work on it) do another oil change.
Check carefully for damaged wires, and rodent damage.
Oh, and for a starter don't use the gas tank in the vehicle, use a plastic gas can fed into the fuel pump (or even gravity feed into the carb, by hanging the can from the hood or windshield higher than the carb. The original tank will be either rusted of filled with god-awful sludge and you don't want that in the fuel system.
BTW, TSC has 6 volt batteries on the shelf (they also have 8 volt ones, count the caps before buying!)
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blowout preventer wrote:

First make sure the engine will turn over, BY HAND. That little 4 is easy to crank. Next remove the fuel line to the carb and hook up a remote tank (boat tanks work well)
6 volt batteries are actually common. Most tractor supply places will have them on hand. Tell them what you are doing and they may even "loan" you one (You buy it, run your tests and if it doesn't work you return the battery and get your money back)
They are a neat vehicle S L O W but fun and actually powerful because of the gearing.
--
Steve W.

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? "blowout preventer" wrote:
A friend recently acquired a 1957 Willys which has been sitting outside for about the last 25 years. It is all there, except for the seats, but still is about as rough as you might expect. It has a flat head Willys four cylinder, and a six volt system.
Rough as it is, it would still be worth getting it going for fun just to tool around the rural area where he lives. But since it's a 6 volt system, how would you go about even start tinkering with it without buying a 6 volt battery for something you don't know if you'll ever end up driving or if it's even worth fixing? Any way to use a 12V battery and reduce the voltge, or etc.?
_________________________________________________________________________
Shop around; you may still be able to find a 6-volt battery. They are offered on eBay, and some Firestone stores have them.
Or, you could use a 12-volt battery. It will make the starter spin fast and strong. Find an ignition resistor from an old car and install it in the lead between the ignition points and the coil primary winding. This will help make the points last longer.
Good luck.
Rodan.
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What would happen if you would run it on 12 volt?
Some things burn over?
Could you just change parts that do burn over to something new that can use 12 volts?
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Bulbs, radio, wiper motor are the biggest problems. Starters can work very well on 12V. I did that on my '64 Ghia for a few years.
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