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:1zhelp: I've had a '71 Cougar XR7 convertible for 14 years. Drove it for the first eight and a half years - but it has sat for the past five years - unstarted and outside in the northern elements (please forgive me - I was in the Navy and my father promised he would take care of it - but didn't!) I am about to move south, and am looking for a place to take my car to get it started and cleaned up a bit - any suggestions? I am in the Chicago area - I would appreciate any advice anyone can give - Thanks!
 

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I don't know of any particular garage or anything in the Chicagoland area... There must be several good ones.

I can say this, you don't just want to crank the starter... could have some of the rings "frozen" to the cylinder walls with rust... Can easily break a ring this way. Take all the spark plugs out and put some Marvels Mystery Oil in each spark plug hole, a good tablespoon or so... a turkey baster works well for this, maybe with a little hose on the end too. Let it sit like this for a day or two, the GENTLY try to turn the car over using a wrench on the big bolt on the front of the harmonic balancer, you'll be able to feel any resistance... just work it gently back and forth, if it seems really stuck you may need to reapply some more oil and wait longer.

Your gas tank will need to be removed, and cleaned out by someone who does this... a local garage will recommend someone to you. The gasoline in there gets NASTY, you will probably want to flush your fuel lines too, and not run any of that gunk through your carb.

It's a process, be patient... look for leaky wheel cylinders in your brakes after you start driving it again, having to add fluid regularly to keep your master cylinder full is an indication of a problem...

Kind of like bringing someone out of a coma...

Ron.
 

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Thanks for the info - I really love this car and don't ever want to get rid of it. It kills me to see it just sitting there falling to pieces.
 
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