1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Let everyone know a little about yourself
Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Sassy, Folks,
Thanks! Love the looks of Sassy and the big back tires!
I don't know of a shop on the rims. Going to try a Cooper tire for fit in next few days. A little smaller in diameter.
John came over and worked on cleaning up the front and rear bumpers.
Image

Image

Also he helped with a new set of plugs in the 289. Here I found a Autolite BF-42 and 7 champions. These were very tight and glad that I changed them out.
Image

We had a discussion about the actual mileage on "lil red" and looked at the book in the glove box. It had the mileage in even 2000 mile increments for oil changes. I dont know of any one who would not write down the actual odometer mileage at the time of each oil change. So we strongly think these were proposed mileage numbers not actual. Bottom line we think the car has the 81K miles on the odometer!

I ordered an repro drivers arm rest and paint to get it to the same interior color.

Added seam sealer in the trunk at the back of the wheel wells. Filled small crack. Then primered the gas tank. applied paint to match the Carnival Red.
Image

Image

Image

Image

Might get it on the lift tomorrow. Maybe review the brakes / tires tomorrow?
The title and plate work maybe Wed? This is the vintage plate I plan to use:
Image
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 2765
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Jims65cyclone »

Sugarmaker wrote:
Sun Jan 14, 2024 10:04 pm
On the tires I would like to do this:
- Want to keep the Magnum 500 wheels if possible. I think they are 7 inch wide rims. Not sure the backspacing dimension?
- Get at least 1/2 inch more clearance in the front tire to fender clearance ( now about 1/4 inch) That means a smaller diameter tire.
- On the rear and or the front I would not mind a wider tire look, but not sure the driving clearance is there? I have about 1 inch clearance on both sides of the rear tires (inside and outside) This is with the shocks at 80 PSI.
So maybe a 215 size tire might be a good option? Could I go wider??
First, a disclaimer: I'm a retired engineer. A large part of my career involved using spreadsheets to analyze and optimize projects. I just can't help myself. It's in my DNA. :roll:
With that confession out of the way, I looked at a range of tires that would fit your rims, and how they compared in diameter and width. First, a little tire tech:
The "official" dimensions for a tire are based on that tire being mounted on a rim of the width that the tire was designed to run on. That is called the standard rim, or measuring rim. The tire can still safely be mounted on narrower or wider rims, within limits, but that affects the actual mounted width of the tire. The actual installed tire width will change 2/10" for every 1/2" the rim varies from the measuring rim width. In your case, your 225/70/14's are 8.9" wide when mounted on a 6.5" wide standard or measuring rim. Since you have them mounted on 7" rims, they actually measure 9.1" wide.
Another thing to note is that I wasn't able to find an online source for 14" 65 series tires. It appears your options are confined to 70 or 60 series, and the 70 series only goes up to 225/70/14. That said, I put together a spreadsheet. :roll:

Image

Since you're looking for 3/4" of clearance between the front tire and the fender, the 205/70/14 is the only 70 series that will add an additional 1/2" to your existing 1/4" to accomplish that. Any of the 60 series tires will easily do it. However, even though the 235 would give you the straight ahead clearance you want, it could still possibly touch the fender when turning the wheels. Think of the latch side of a door closing in a door jamb. That side of a door is chamfered at an angle so it won't strike the jamb as it swings shut. You can't do that to your tires, and the wider the tire, the greater the chance of interference. You also have an increased chance of the tire contacting the frame rail and/or the fender well at the rear of the front tire. Depending on the backspace of your wheel, you could also have problems contacting the upper control arm with wider tires. For what it's worth, I have 215/65/15's on 7" rims with 3.75"BS on the front of mine, which are .4" smaller in diameter and .39" narrower than your 225/70/14's, and I occasionally scrub the fenders making a turn with a dip in the road, and scrubbing the back of the fender well and frame rail when turning the wheels all the way, like when parking. I should have gone with 205/65's or 205/60's.
In the rear, if you've got 1" clearance on both sides of your current tires, you could go with up to 245/60/14 (biggest I could find). That would lessen your gap on each side by .3", but that might be pushing it. Probably better to go with 235/60/14's and only take an additional .1" on either side. I have 235/60/15's with the same wheels as on the front on the back of mine and have no problems with rubbing. Some on here have said I must have a narrowed rear axel to get away with that, but I don't. I think my stance is just a little higher than theirs, which is what you're accomplishing with your air shocks.
My advice (and worth every penny :roll: ) is go with 205/70/14's on the front and 235/60/14's on the rear. The 235's have .1" less sidewall height and .2" less total height than the 205's, but you'd never notice that visually. If you wanted to go with 60 series on the front, I would not go above a 215/60/14. If you want to be able to rotate tires between front and back, I'd go with either the 205/70's or 215/60's all around.

Jim
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Jim,
Thank you for your time spent on the tire analysis. Wow! Your chart and the explination sure will help in making the best tire fit choice for "lil red"!
I am going to see if the 235/60 will work all around? That may not work as you have mentioned in the front when turning?
I like your idea of the more narrow tire on the front and the wider on the rear. Was just going to try to use the same size all around? The tire shop I am working with is VERY flexible, so i may be able to try the 235/60 on the car and see the clearance and the look.
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 2765
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Jims65cyclone »

I'll be shocked if the 235 works on the front, but if you can do a test fit for free or nominal charge, go for it. I think those Magnum 500s have a 4.25" BS on the 7" rims, which might work to your advantage compared to my 3.75" BS. If they'll let you test drive it, that's great. If not, take a couple of trash bags with you. Lower the car and roll it back and forth at least one revolution of the tires to settle the suspension and pull it forward onto the trash bags. That will make it easier to turn the wheels from lock to lock to look for problems. Be even better if they have a 4-post lift or alignment rack you can pull it up on and get underneath to watch as someone turns the wheels. Pay close attention to the fender clearance as you turn it through the arch. That tire is .6" wider than what you've got on there now. Hopefully, the .4" smaller diameter will be enough to compensate. If it's not at least 3/8" clearance you may still have scrubbing on turns where the road dips. Good luck.

Jim
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Jim,
The 215-60's may be the ticket? I wount be able to test drive as the weather sucks.
But I may be able to bring the 235-60 mounted home and play with it on the car.

So today's events:
We pulled all the wheels and brake drums. No big surprizes.
Image

Found where the front tires drivers side has rubbed the front fender lip and also the back of the fender well. Had a quarter size rubbed area. Obviously the front needs to be about 1 inch smaller in diameter. So the 215-60 size as recommended by Jim, might be the ticket?

The brakes shoes. The springs and mechanism looked pretty good, except for the right front which has the pads on backwards. Will change that to the correct position.
Right Front
Image

Right rear
Image

Left Rear
Image

Right front
Image

Rear drums should be turned. They have some .03 deep grooves. Will check with O Riley's to turn them?

Sprayed down the brake shoe area with a can of brake clean for each wheel!

John finished the polishing of the bumpers easier this way!
Image
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

User avatar
poboyjo65
Moderator
Posts: 7059
Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2011 9:40 pm
Location: Camden, Tenn.

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by poboyjo65 »

to give you an idea of how it would look here's a pic of mine with 215/60/(15)'s on front which is real close in diameter & width to the 205/70/14's that Jim suggested;
Image
here are the comparison specs;
https://www.tacomaworld.com/tirecalc?ti ... -205-70r14
I have an occasional rub on front right but mainly because I lowered it.usually backing out of the driveway or with passengers rubs on fender . & with adjustable strutrods to dial in more caster pulled the wheels forward some.
215/60/14's would be an inch shorter than my front tires & may look kinda short .

the diameter of the rear tires in this old pic is 26.61''

Did you see where the rears were rubbing? does it still have the bump stops? if it is rubbing on those might take a BFH & adjust it a little! :)
Image
Johno

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 2765
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Jims65cyclone »

Man...I need to start shopping for a friend that will come over and polish my Comet! :lol: :lol:

Jim
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Johno, Jim, Comet folks,
Yea good friends dont let friends drive dirty cars!:) I think John is having as much fun with this "lil red" Comet as I am!
We will be slowing down on the Comet work and funding as our maple syrup season will be starting soon. But we hit it hard in both areas today.

That tire calculator is a very nice tool! Thank you guys for linking that here! I have adjusted virtual tire sizes a couple times! Easy peasy!

The rear tires (225-70 (14)) seemed to be rubbing only on the exterior of the tire against the inside body bump in the center wheel well area. And this could have been due to the air shocks being at 35 psi?? It scuffed the drivers tire a little, just outside of the white lettering area. The tires had plenty of clearance in the area of the bump stops.
Cheryl and I took two tires (225-70) and rims to the tire shop. They quickly mounted the new Cooper 235-60's. Yep, as the calculators show, these are about 1 inch shorter then the previous rubber. Did not get to try them on the Comet yet. The back spacing and the rim size were written on the inside of the rim second rim! Which we found just after we measured the first one! 4.25 back spacing and 7 inch rim. I do not think these type of rims could be modified in any way to adjust back spacing. Maybe there are different versions of the Magnum 500 rim?? The rim center is a stamped steel part, so it can not be machined to adjust back spacing as I see it. So we have what we have for rims. These need a good exterior cleaning for sure. Maybe even repaint the black portion if I run out of things to do??:)
Image

Image

Image

Maybe not a great picture of the new smaller 235-60 (14) in front of the de-mounted 225-70 (14).
Image

Image

Image

We then headed to ORiley's, and dropped off the rear brake drums for turning. They were completed in a couple hours and looked wonderful! Glad I got these done.
Image

Next stop was to pick up the previous owner and the title and get all the paper work completed for the state of Pennsylvania. Title changed to antique. Vintage plate requested. Pay the fees and state sales tax and out the door! We stopped at our shop and Bill (the PO) at 92 was happy to see the Comet secure in a warm area and getting some attention. He said he just drove the car during the 12 years he had it. Maybe adding 5000 miles on it in 12 years. He never even changed spark plugs!:)

Sandblasted the exterior of the rear brake drums, and coated with some 500 degree black.
Image

Image

Also picked up a rear flex brake line as a spare. The current rubber one has some minor abrasion where it was zip tied away from the exhaust pipe. Also have to put on a new rubber vent line on the rear axle. Was just old and broke apart. Add this to the list.
Image

Received the repro drivers arm rest, in palomino color, from Ecklers. This will be painted with SEM Color Coat in Super White to match the interior. This combo was recommended by Comet expert Mike in Ohio.
Image

Image

After review of the brakes I plan to use the system as designed for a while. So not planning any brake system upgrades at this time.
Enough for today. Thanks for checking on us!
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Folks,
Well we tried the tires (235-60) on the rear. They are smaller and just a touch wider.
Reversed the shoes on the front right:
Image

the 235-60 (14) on the rear for fit. Might work?
Image

Just had to try the 205-65-14 spare tire and stock hubcap
Image

Carb
Image

Image
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 2765
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Jims65cyclone »

Sugarmaker wrote:
Thu Jan 18, 2024 3:21 am
Also picked up a rear flex brake line as a spare. The current rubber one has some minor abrasion where it was zip tied away from the exhaust pipe. Also have to put on a new rubber vent line on the rear axle. Was just old and broke apart. Add this to the list.
Be sure that the rear brake hose is long enough to prevent it from being under any strain with your air shocks pumped up. I replaced my rear hose with one for a ‘76 F100 truck which is about 10" longer than the original. That allowed me to position the hose to avoid an interference with my exhaust system and still have plenty of slack when the wheels are hanging free. I also replaced my axle vent line using gas hose.

Jim
Image

comethead
Posts: 5692
Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2003 7:44 pm
Location: Palmdale, CA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by comethead »

Great looking Comet!
Bummer about the console lid emblem. They were reproduced awhile back and like most everything else Comet specific they went away. I should have bought 20 of them :roll:
I think your best bet is keep an eye on EBay, a nice used one may pop up. I just did a pretty thorough search on there and got nothing.

I think that’s one of the “exciting” aspects of owning a Comet…some parts are very hard to find and when you do find them….ahhh the sweet taste of Victory!! :lol:

Joe
1965 Caliente HT- 289/4 speed
1964 Falcon HT- track car- 302/4 speed
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Folks,
Still evaluating tire sizes. May drop back and look at the 215-70 (14) Coopers. After I get the 235-60's test fit on the front.

The power steering control valve will need reevaluated. I drove this car a year ago and told the PO that I thought it had play in the steering. He did some work on the control valve. At least I can see that the ball and socket was touched. I don't know any thing else but the steering moves easily to the right but acts like standard steering or even harder to the left. So this will be looked at before we get out on the road much. By the way it did not have a problem steering to the left until the PO took the control valve apart. So I really thing the problem is in there. or at least we will start there.
So as mentioned in a earlier thread I may need to get a seal kit and learn how to "rebuild the control valve.
Also the boot on the cylinder rod is shot. I haven't looked for one yet but it is just in pieces.

Jim,
I really like the idea of the longer hose to get it away from the exhaust and the shock stroke too! Thanks! I had though of that but did not do a comparison with other hoses. If I tear into the brakes that may be an option to improve the functionality of the brake system.

Doing front drum clean up and new seals, one of the wheel seals was still the original FOMOCO. re-pack the bearings and such. Really doesn't look too bad in the brakes systems. Looking at maybe replacing the wheel cylinders? I know its a slippery slope when you start taking apart things that have been joined for years!:)

Joe,
Yes the emblem is elusive for sure. Thanks for the support.
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

User avatar
Jims65cyclone
Posts: 2765
Joined: Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:29 pm
Location: Lexington, SC

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Jims65cyclone »

Hey Chris.........since you're combing through your new ride to see what it needs, Rockauto has a lot of parts on clearance sale that you might want to shop through for stuff you might need.
https://www.rockauto.com/closeouts/?carcode=1344271

Jim
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Folks, Jim,
Thanks I did get a couple things.
We cleaned up the front drums. Coated them with black, cleaned the bearings and repacked. And installed the new seals.
Image

Image

Tried the 235-60 tires on the front and found they were rubbing in the ball joint of the upper control arm.
Image

Other than that they were about what i wanted for fender clearance. Going to get a 215-70 (14) fit up and try on the Comet next week.

Me flying while John checked clearance
Image

Painted the black in the magnum 500 rims.
Image

Found that the left exhaust pipe was hitting the pumkin. Raised up the pipe to add more clearance.
Image

Replaced the rear axle vent hose.
Image

Looked at the power steering control valve and ordered a kit with the o rings and seals.
Image
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

Sugarmaker
Posts: 120
Joined: Thu Dec 28, 2023 9:55 am
Location: Albion PA

Re: 1965 Comet Caliente (little red)

Post by Sugarmaker »

Guys,
The tire saga continues:
Front:
With the 235-60/14 on the front I have slight interference on the upper ball joint. With a 5/16 wheel spacer I have well, 5/16 clearance there.
Front fender to tire clearance and back of wheel well to tire clearance look great even when wheels are turned to stops while car is on the floor.

Rear:
I have the 225-70-14s on there for now and with the shocks at 85PSI there is good static clearance. (I might try lowering the air pressure to 55 ish and checking it there too)

I asked the tire shop to order a set of 215-70/14 for trials. (these have the Cooper in raised white letters., and that is the smallest in the raised white letter series.) These are not much smaller in dia and or width so not sure these will work as well on the front of the car?

I may consider the 235-60/14 on the rear as then they would then match all around.And the 235-60 dia is almost the same as the original 205 series. I would need to use at least 1/4 inch thick wheel spacers on the front to get the back spacing to clear the upper ball joint. You guys have concerns about having less thread engagement on the lug nuts?? Its not my favorite option.

The plot thickens!:) Some pictures because I can.

I did get all the wheels repainted in the black area:
Image

The 235-60 on front 225-70 on rear:
Image

Image

Image

Clearances were checked on the floor with the car rolled back a little too!
Regards,
Chris and Cheryl
Image

Post Reply