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Battery Leaks

Posted By Florida_Phil 4 Months Ago
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Florida_Phil
Posted 4 Months Ago
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My 1955 Thunderbird has been converted to 12 Volts.  I installed a new 1957 12 volt battery tray and HD battery in the car last summer.  Batteries to fit this car are hard to find.  I bought a new battery from the local auto parts store.  The TBird takes a Group 29NF battery.  I wasn't able to find a maintenance free 29NF battery.

Because I upgraded my brakes to a dual master cylinder, I was not able to use the battery shield.  Everything worked fine until this summer.   I noticed the battery water level was low, so I filled it.  Evidentially, I filled it too much as battery acid came out and into the tray.  This made a big mess with white battery powder all over the frame below the tray.   I cleaned up the mess and painted the affected areas.   I ordered a new tray with the shield still attached. 

I don't know if the missing heat shield caused my battery to boil over or if overfilling it caused the problem. I will try to make the heat shield work.  It may take some fabrication.  Anyone ever have this problem?
KULTULZ
Posted 4 Months Ago
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The 55/57 BIRD has to have the BAT heat shield, the main reason being the high under-hood temperature(s) and the fact of the design of the FYB exhaust manifold and it's proximity to the BAT.

Causes of BAT electrolyte spillage and evaporation-

1) Excessive under-hood heat
2) Too close to exhaust (excessive heat)
3) Over charging
4) Over filling
5) Cracked case (from excess heat/over filling)
6) Sulfated BAT

BAT TERM corrosion (vented BAT) is caused by electrolyte vapors from heat.

Do you have a booster install @ the MC?
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miker
Posted 4 Months Ago
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Couple thoughts. Unless the battery was really low, I was taught to check the water after charging. Cold, only cover the plates, not up to the split rim. This was deep cycles on boats, fork lifts, and golf carts. I always assumed (there’s that word) it applies to all batteries.

One way or another, you need to get the heat shield in there. Birds are a problem, and worse with stock manifolds. Even close, just short of touching the battery, it will help.

I solved it by using a small Odyssey battery and hiding it under a cover. I’ve seen some “original” batteries that were just boxes, with a small AGM like the Odyssey hid inside and wired to the exposed terminals.

miker
55 bird, 32 cabrio F code
Kent, WA
Tucson, AZ
dbird
Posted 4 Months Ago
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My solution was moving the battery to the trunk,  It doesn't take that much room, even in the 55 trunk.  The best thing I did was to change to an Optima battery, really holds a charge when I don't drive it for a month or two, and no gasses in the trunk.

Don
oldcarmark
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Florida_Phil (8/13/2019)
My 1955 Thunderbird has been converted to 12 Volts.  I installed a new 1957 12 volt battery tray and HD battery in the car last summer.  Batteries to fit this car are hard to find.  I bought a new battery from the local auto parts store.  The TBird takes a Group 29NF battery.  I wasn't able to find a maintenance free 29NF battery.

Because I upgraded my brakes to a dual master cylinder, I was not able to use the battery shield.  Everything worked fine until this summer.   I noticed the battery water level was low, so I filled it.  Evidentially, I filled it too much as battery acid came out and into the tray.  This made a big mess with white battery powder all over the frame below the tray.   I cleaned up the mess and painted the affected areas.   I ordered a new tray with the shield still attached. 

I don't know if the missing heat shield caused my battery to boil over or if overfilling it caused the problem. I will try to make the heat shield work.  It may take some fabrication.  Anyone ever have this problem?

Interstate sells a regular 29NF Battery. Not sure about MF. If U are using a Battery which U can top up is it MF? Napa sells a Commercial low Maintenance 29NF

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Florida_Phil
Posted 4 Months Ago
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I ordered a new battery tray and shield. I am using hard brake lines to a 1967 Mustang dual master cylinder in my car.  I had to make the bends in the lines to the master cylinder tight to clear the battery.  The brakes work fine, but there was not enough room for the shield.  I will work with the new tray and shield to make it work some how. 

Everything was OK until I filled the battery.  The plates were dry, so I added water to the top of the hole.  I am sure I overfilled the battery.  From now on I will add just enough water to cover the plates. We'll see what happens.

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FORD DEARBORN
Posted 4 Months Ago
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Phil, I don't know how the heat shield is formed or secured in place but could it be slotted to allow installing over the tubes? Or? Just my 2 cents - I know you'll figure out a plan, good luck, JEFF.....


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Florida_Phil
Posted 4 Months Ago
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I'm thinking the same thing.  The shield is held in place by two angle brackets mounted below the battery tray.  I believe I can slot the shield to make room for the brake lines.  I may have to relocate one of the brackets.  I will post a photo when I have it figured out.
KULTULZ
Posted 4 Months Ago
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Did you notice the banjo fittings on the install I showed?

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Florida_Phil
Posted 4 Months Ago
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Yes I did.  Where did you buy the banjo fittings and stainless lines?  Part numbers?


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