May I say how glad I was to read Mr. L. Thurston’s remarks concerning his 1927/8 Chrysler 72 roadster in the “Vintage Postbag” of March. My father owned a “hardtop” version of this car, and he is full of glowing praise for it. With a top speed of around 90 m.p.h. and extremely vivid acceleration, it was unbeatable by any untuned machinery, including the Bentleys of the period. A glance at its instruction book reveals that practically every moving part of the car is adjustable for wear, most of the adjustments being of the “turn till tight then slacken” variety.
We still have the remains of this car today – I say “remains” because during the war it was converted into a pick-up truck—and even in its present rather neglected and unused state, it is incredibly silent and smooth running. Sitting inside the cab, it is almost impossible to detect engine sound at tickover speed.
I am hoping at a later date to restore the car but, like Mr. Thurston, I am worried about the state of the radiator. The lower half of the shell contains a hole for the starting handle, the surround of which is in no way strengthened to withstand the strains consequent on using the handle. The leakages in this area are ominous!
With regard to Mr. Thurston’s query about the function of the plunger on the brake-fluid reservoir, it has the dual purpose of a pump and a screw-down valve. In the screw-down position the reservoir is cut off from the rest of the system. When it is desired to replace fluid losses in the system (detected by increase of resistance-free pedal travel), the plunger is unscrewed and pumped up and down until resistance to this motion is felt, and then screwed down to isolate the reservoir once more. Operation of the brake pedal whilst the plunger is unscrewed will, of course, result in the contents of the hydraulic cylinder entering the reservoir instead of operating the brakes. In a sense it is rather a clever system, in that the unknowing person, whilst exploring, will nearly always do the right thing by accident; i.e., pump and screw down the plunger!
I am. Yours. etc..
I. Bennet – Cambridge