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  #1  
Old 03-13-2012, 07:52 PM
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Default Windshield Wipers

Hello all, I have a 59 and it still has the original, vacuum, windshield wipers. As you probably know, they don't work all that well.
My question is this; Is there a way of reworking/rebuilding them so that they work? Right now they work, but just barely. They only go up a few inches and then back down to the starting position. If I leave them on for a while and rev the engine they sometimes get better, but so far they do not work well enough to take a chance of getting caught in a rain storm.
Anyway, can anyone help?
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  #2  
Old 03-13-2012, 08:19 PM
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get the electric conversion kit.

Or else do like me and avoid the rain. Apply AquaPel or RainX as needed....
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:50 PM
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If you want to keep your original vacuum wiper you have a couple choices. Some people have had luck sucking brake fluid into the motor. That swells the seals which improves the vacuum effect. If you do a search you can probably find the procedure for doing it. You could also send it away to the wiperman to rebuild it. I think it costs about $80. There's a replacement electric motor that they make but it costs over $200. I did my own electric conversion by using a rear window wiper motor from a late model Buick wagon. Cost me about $30 with the switch.

John
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:28 PM
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Default Windshield Wipers

John, I would like to add this conversion you did using the Buick windshield wiper rear motor. Could you put something together for us, including what year Buick wagon(s) to get that motor off of? Also, the installation procedures you went through to replace the OEM vacuum motor and replace it with the electric one. If this can save our fellow Tbird members some cash, I am sure they would like to know how you did this. Many of them probably would replace those vacuum motor for $30 instead of having to pay the $200 I and others have...
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:54 PM
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Ray,

I'll put the procedure together that I used and send it to you.

John
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  #6  
Old 03-13-2012, 11:58 PM
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Back in the day, electric wiper motors were an extra cost option. Ford knew the vacuum motors were crap, but they came cheap from Trico. OEM brakes are marginal at best, too.

I have two classic cars with aftermarket electric wiper motors. They are made by New Port Engineering, and they work very well in Michigan, where we get lots of rain (& snow).

The price stings only a little until the first time you use your wipers. The motor is hidden under your dash so it cannot be detected unless you stand on your head. There is another option that I bought with my new electric motor... interval, slow, fast, washer, park switch ($67) and a knob shaft extension ($20). This switch uses your original dash knob so it looks bone stock. Push it in, and a contact closes to operate (your supplied) washer pump motor. Let go, and the washer stops.

I bought mine through an authorized dealer, JPL in Aliquippa, PA, because they offer free shipping on orders over $100. I suggest you call the store and see if they can give you a better price break than ordering through their eBay listing. Call them toll free at 724-375-3940.

Hope this helps. - Dave
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Old 03-13-2012, 11:58 PM
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Default Windshield Wipers

Thanks, John. That will be a good service to our folks on here! If you have any pictures that you might have taken, they would be helpful also. You can email what you put together to me and I will add it to the Windshield Wiper part of the TRL for posterity.
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Old 03-14-2012, 02:30 AM
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Do the brake fluid thing first TJ. I did it and its free. ( Only if you use the bled brake fluid!)

Sounds like your wipers were exactly like mine. You'll have them fixed in 48 hrs.
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Old 03-14-2012, 03:04 AM
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Between now and your repair, use lots of RainX, it really helps... and is fun to watch the beads of rain race off around the curved glass.
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Old 03-14-2012, 10:50 AM
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Default Wipers

Again! You guys are a great resource. I will try the Brake Fluid first and then decide what to do if it doesn't work.
I use a Rain-X treatment whenever I take it out for a drive and it looks overcast, but usually my Bird just never sees the rain! That's why I don't want to go the electric route, it will be a waste.
Hope I can find the instructions for doing the brake fluid treatment.....
Thanks to everyone.
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