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#390949 - 06/19/17 08:28 AM Windshield Wipers
MoonshineMachine Offline
Shade Tree Mechanic

Registered: 11/09/16
Posts: 48
Loc: Eastern NC
So I am working on getting my windshield wipers up and running and I am slightly confused by them. I have never had a vehicle with vacuum wipers and maybe I don't fully understand how they should operate.

The main concern I have at this point is that they are always "loose". Meaning, I can grab either wiper and easily move it by hand across the windshield with no resistance. Is this normal or is there a problem with the wiper transmissions or attachment? They appear new, as does the linkage and motor.

When turned on, the passenger wiper will operate very slowly but will not retract when off. The driver wiper does nothing. The chains are intact. Not sure if I have an adjustment issue, a motor issue, or a vacuum issue.

The Filling Station 1937-42
#390953 - 06/19/17 09:38 AM Re: Windshield Wipers [Re: MoonshineMachine]
old216 Offline


Registered: 09/15/02
Posts: 1641
Loc: Bracebridge Ontario,Canada
There have been some posts on here on how to revive the wiper motor. In your case you must have a transmission linkage that has disengaged or is missing. Normally the two wipers are mechanically bound to act together.
My 1951 1 Ton is now on the road! My 38 Master 4 Door is also now on the road .

#390996 - 06/20/17 06:30 AM Re: Windshield Wipers [Re: MoonshineMachine]
cskennedy10 Offline
Shade Tree Mechanic

Registered: 04/10/13
Posts: 179
Loc: Calhoun, Louisiana
It sounds like the set screw or nut may be loose where the wiper arm attaches. If these are not tight and the shaft moves back and forth, the splines (teeth) on the shaft could wear out the softer metal splines in the wiper arm. If you find the splines in the wiper arm are worn out, then you can purchase new ones. Before I completely rebuilt my wiper assembly (1940) I had wiper arms that had a spring activated cover that hid the wiper arm attachment screws. You had to lift the cap up to acces these screws. I have replaced those arms with the type that doesn't have this cover.

It's not that big of a deal to take good photos (so you have a good reference on how to put it back together) of the entire assembly and then remove it and do a complete rebuild on the wiper system. If you ever decide to rebuild the system, it'll be much easier if you could carefully remove the front seat. You'll be glad you did! I sent my Trico vacuum motor off for a complete rebuild. Many parts are available at Chevs of the 40's and the Filling Station. I believe Chevs of the 40's has a rebuild service.

Good luck!


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