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The accelerator pedal has a hitch or hesitation.

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  • The accelerator pedal has a hitch or hesitation.

    Has anyone rebuilt there 1958 to 1960 Thunderbird carburetor bell crank linkage? I have two sets and they are booth worn in the same manner. My next project is to figure a way to rebuild one. Or replace it with a rebuilt one ore a new one. I can't be the only on with a worn out bell crank linkage.

    The accelerator pedal has a hitch or hesitation. I push a little more on the pedal and the car jumps. I think it is caused by the linkage. Has anybody had this problem and fixed it. And what did they find was the cause?

    1960 HT
    Thunderbird Redistry #39303

  • #2
    The holes tend to wear in an 'egg shape' or 'oblong' configuration.

    Richard D. Hord had a problem with his awhile back. When he lifted his foot off the gas, the engine would idle very fast. Then he tapped the pedal with his foot and the linkage would return a little more, causing the idle to act right.

    The proper way to do holes that wear is to drill and bush them, like your door hinges. Door hinge bushings are designed to be changed and they are made of oilite (sintered bronze).

    Maybe you can cut the steel plates that the rods go into, so you can lift the rods out. Then drill the holes larger and add split bushings, so each half will wrap around the rod. Then the new bushing hole can 'clam-shell' together with a screw or two holding it together.

    It's just an idea I've been kicking around. I don't like the idea of cutting the rods but there is nothing wrong with re-working the holes. The fit should be loose but not sloppy, and the setup should last a very long time. We never think of how many times we hit the gas (or brake) pedal, but we depend on it to work flawlessly every time. - Dave
    My latest project:
    CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

    "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
    --Lee Iacocca

    From: Royal Oak, Michigan


    • #3
      I assume y'all talking about the throttle shaft bore in the carburetor. Not simply the lever to shaft assembly which is mashed and screwed to make a solid connection.

      I had this issue in my 72 Ford back in the day. I drove that car to 185k miles through high school and college and wore everything out. I was getting air through the wear space between the steel shaft and the pot metal casting, collecting dirt and that would bind the linkage. This happened on the drivers side only.

      My $2 solution was to drill out the casting about 1/2 way for a rubber O ring. Trail and error shim washers compressed the O ring to form a seal and center the shaft. I needed a slightly stronger spring to make the rig return (dependably) to idle.

      Did the cob-job work? Yes, and for several years. Would I do it again? No, I'd look on Ebay for a numbers matching carb and switch out the main body.


      • #4
        As stated the holes wear egg shaped and if there is a long slot in the kick down linkage that can wear also. I have repaired a couple when I was working in a large machine shop. All worked very good when done, but none looked exactly stock after the repairs. (Street rodders were always bringing in things to modify.)

        The problem arises when taking the rods out of the bracketry. The rods often are swedged or smashed at the ends to keep things together. These areas need to be filed round to disassemble and often the rods are welded to other linkage parts and the welds need to be cut.

        Once disassembled, the rest is easy. Drill and install bushings is excellent and also is welding the hole and re-machining the proper size hole and welding and filing any wear areas on the rods themselves. The easiest way to secure the assembly we found was just a flat washer welded on the end of the linkage rod to replace a flattened area. This will not look original but it takes a very informed person (judge) to spot repairs.

        Not an easy repair unless you have access to TIG welders, lathes and milling machines - then you can fix most anything! Good luck & and finding good used one may be the best way to go. A simple cleaning, filing any rough spots and minimal lubrication may help!