GERALD´S CADILLACS


WWW.ELDORADO-SEVILLE.COM

COLOR CODED VACUUM HOSES - BEWARE OF TERRIBLE REPRODUCTIONS!

Cadillac used color coded ribbed vacuum hoses from the 60s to the late 70s to make it easier to identify them on the vacuum schematics in the shop manual.
These vacuum hoses unfortunately get extremely hard and brittle over the decades under the harsh conditions in the engine bay. Often they literally break into pieces by just touching them.

On my 67 Eldorado I had to replace most of the vacuum lines when I got it - and it really has a lot of hoses.
When I searched for reproductions I could not find a really good source and I gave up.
At my ongoing project on my 74 another of these original lines fell apart while working in the engine bay. So I started to look for the correct hoses once again.
Soon I found a link on ebay to a well known seller, whose name I do not want to mention, offering the lines in all the colors I needed.
I ordered quite a few Ft of each color.
The seller describes them as factory correct and as a perfect part - see screenshots below.

As they do not ship to Europe, a friend of mine was so kind to forward the hoses to me.

When they arrived I was shocked - I have never ever seen a worse product.

The paint is peeling off or missing at all. As soon as you even slightly bend the hoses, the paint on the stripes just cracks and falls off. It could not be worse.
Also the hoses are too thick and the walls are to thick. The original hoses are quite a bit slimmer than these crappy reproduction hoses.

They also charged me for 15ft of red striped hoses but only sent 10ft. This was about the worst buying experience ever.
I´m trying to return the hoses at the moment - but communication with this seller is terrible.
I normally never criticize sellers here on my website and never leave any negative comments on ebay - but this is the worst I have ever experienced.

Shipping back these hoses will cost me at least $50 and I already paid $60 for having them shipped to me in Europe - with the import tax I will have lost $160.- for this BS… Money I would urgently need for some other parts… :-(

I´m now trying to find another good source for quality reproduction hoses. There is one Corvette parts dealer which looks promising as he offers some great kits for Corvettes, but they are all pre-cut… I hope he can send me some ft. of the hoses I will need - I hope that I will get a positive reply.

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Ebay seller screenshot - this is how they describe the hoses…
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As you can see the paint stripe is just cracking everywhere.edge
As you can see the paint stripe is just cracking everywhere.edge
As you can see the paint stripe is just cracking everywhere.edge
As you can see the paint stripe is just cracking everywhere.edge
As you can see the paint stripe was not even painted correctly on the green hose…

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REPAIRING THE CLOCKS OF THE 1958, 1966 AND 1967 CADILLAC

I like it when everything works on all cars.
So it was time to service some of the clocks which stopped working over the years.
The clock in the 66 did not work at all.
It's extremely simple to remove on the 66 as you can get it out of the instrument panel by just unscrewing one bolt.
The clock was very dirty in the clock work and needed a good cleaning and some good lubrication. Also the contact of the coil was a little worn and this was fixed. It then happily ticked back to life and now works perfectly.

The clock on my 58 stopped working a couple of years ago. So it came out as well. It's a little more complicated to get it out though...
When it was finally out - it could be seen that the coil was burnt and that it needed some very good cleaning as well. Some of the melted insulation material was all over the clock mechanism and of course I had no spare coil for it - so the original one had to be rewound with some good wire from a left over light solenoid...
Wow - this really took a while - but now the clock works perfectly again!

I was not so lucky with the clock on the 67 Eldorado which only worked when the car was warm. To take it out you have to remove the upper dash and then get out some light bulbs and disconnect it from the printed circuit.
It was also cleaned and lubricated and the clock worked, but it made a very loud noise when the coil rewound the spring of the clock.
The sound got better over night, but then the clock stopped working completely... It's a Westcox clock which uses a double coil and is much more complicated to rebuild than the Borg clocks. Its also almost impossible to find parts for it, as Borg clocks are much more widely used.
Looks like I will need a new 1967 clock and replace it with a Borg unit :-(

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The clock in the 66 is now working perfectly again.

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The disassembled clock of the 58 Eldorado.
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The coil was burnt on the 58 clock.
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Fully cleaned clock.
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Back together with a rewound coil.
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Back in the car - working perfectly again.

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REBUILDING THE CRUISE CONTROL OF THE 1966 CADILLAC

The 1966 Coupe deVille is a very well equipped car with lots of options.
Too bad that almost nothing worked when I got the car.
Of course I do not accept any non working things on my cars.
So with the help of another Cadillac aficionado who likes to work with anything electric - we took on the big challenge to repair the “Perfect Circle Cruise Control“ of the 66.
We had no idea how it worked and only had the shop manual as a reference.
The speed reminder function did kind of work, but the cruise control function was completely inoperative.

It took us a couple of days to fix it properly and now it works like the day the car left the factory!

We encountered a multitude of problems:

  • 1) The dash mounted switch was defective - the plastic gear to set the desired speed was broken.
  • 2) Most of the contacts inside the unit were oxidized
  • 3) We had to adjust the contacts inside the unit properly and calibrate the system to the speed set on the dial
  • 4) As it turned out later the brake switch was not properly adjusted (we should have checked this first and read the shop manual properly...)

After a lot of trial and error we eventually learned how the system works and we finally could adjust it correctly. It's a very nice system when it works properly, but you really have to calibrate it correctly. It's a fascinating option and there is some great engineering behind it. As it is rather complicated to repair you will see a lot of 60s car without a working cruise control.
Luckily its pretty well described how to adjust the contact points in the shop manual and I should have read it more thoroughly before we started to work on it - it would have saved a lot of time troubleshooting.

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inside the system - still on the car
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the “perfect circle“ unit on the bench
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on the bench
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the dash mounted control switch disassembled
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the broken plastic gear before we repaired it
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the rebuilt and perfectly cleaned unit - back in the car

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REPAIRING THE AIRCONDITION OF THE 1966 COUPE DEVILLE

When the 1966 Coupe deVille arrived at my garage the AC was completely inoperable. Nothing worked - the blower would not come on at all.
So I started to search for the cause of the problem.
Everything seemed to be fine on the vacuum side. When the lever on the control panel was moved all the vacuum actuated doors operated and the master vacuum switch also seemed to work.
After some searching I found out that no current was flowing through the master vacuum switch on the firewall.
So the switch was taken apart.
If you do this you have to be very careful not to damage the membrane.
The contacts inside the switch were oxidized and so no more current could flow through.
The contacts were also adjusted so that the switch could engage properly when vacuum was applied.
When everything was put back together the whole system once again worked as it should.
It works absolutely perfect now.
Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of the switch rebuild but here is a video on youtube where a gentleman explains how this switch works…

A video that explains how this switch works

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The original AC system of the 1966 Coupe deVille is now working perfectly again.
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Thats the master vacuum switch which was defective.
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The rebuilt master vacuum switch.

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1966 Cadillac Turn Signal Switch repair

The 1966 is a fantastic car - but as most low mileage cars, it sometimes needs some work to fix some minor problems which were caused by not using the car for a longer period of time.
One of the few problems this cars had were some weird issues with the turn signal lights.

I´m a perfectionist and everything has to work on the Cadillacs that are in my garage ;-) - thats one of my rules ;-)

Strange things happened on the right rear and front turn signal lights when the headlights were on or off...

This light switch is made of "unobtainium", so I was pretty scared that it could be broken.

The switch is located underneath the dash and is screwed onto the steering column and is controlled and actuated by a steel cable that is coming from the turn signal lever.

On this car the cable was out of alignment and did not engage the switch correctly on the right side position and this intermediate position of the switch caused the various problems.
It took me quite a while to get the adjustment of the cable right again, as you carefully have to shorten or lengthen it with a nose-plier to get the right length.
I also adjusted the spring you can see on the picture below. This makes the switch more snappy. It now works perfectly and the lever moves much nicer!


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the 1966 Cadillac turn signal switch as seen from underneath the dash - already removed from the steering column.

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