The Garage Project 5        January 2008

What you see below wasn't part of my garage makeover plan. Not because they aren't cool, it's because of the price that people want for them. But when I was helping a buddy of mine move some stuff out of an old barn (you'd be amazed what you can find in old barns) and in one of the corners of the dust filled place were four old pumps like this. As soon as I laid eyes on them, I asked if he wanted to sell one and the answer was "yes"! Turns out that some people were coming over to buy stuff that same day and he was going to sell all the pumps to them. But he saved one for me after seeing me drool over it for awhile. Thanks again Chad! 

These pumps have been out of service for close to 50 years because the calibration sticker said 1958 on it. And for some unknown reason, the pump had been painted gray (I think rolled on) and now after many years of sitting, it was starting to flake off revealing it's true identity. This one is a Richfield pump and originally it was blue and yellow, which I plan to restore like it was back when it was in service. And the drink of choice that it served-up back then was Ethyl. How cool is that!!



The inside of the pump is a little rusted and I plan to remove most of the inner workings because it's very heavy and very hard to move around. I really don't need any of it to restore it (for me anyways) and if anyone wants the old parts, email me and I'll be glad to give them away.

After looking at how this was put together, I thought it was time to get the pump on a diet so the first thing I wanted to do was disconnect a few things. If you look close (below), you can see some one inch metal pipe on the left with a union between them along with a white tag. I thought if I could take apart these two items, it would be easier on my back so this is where I was going to start. I put my pipe wrench on the fitting and it wouldn't move (I guess there was a little more rust on those threads than I first thought) so I got out my long "cheater pipe" which is three feet long and slid it over my pipe wrench to which it had the same results. Looks like it's time for plan "B" because those two pipes were threaded right into their respective cases.

If you look at the right side, you can see another one inch pipe that runs from top to bottom but this one was a little different. After looking at how the pipe was fastened to the pump housing, I could see that it was held on with four bolts (now were talk'n). The bolts came out nice and easy but still wouldn't come loose with me pulling on it. Using a large screwdriver that was right next to me didn't do the trick either so it was time to get a little more serious. Well you know the old saying, "use a bigger hammer" which is just what I did and after one love tap to test things out, I let the next one fly. 

Well the hammer did the trick, which was the good news, the bad news is that I got a bath of 50 year old gas all over me. Damn does this stuff stink!!! On the other hand, I guess it's a good thing I didn't use a torch or cut-off wheel on it. 

Now this nasty ol' gas was on my shirt, pants, socks and my shoes. It was easy to get rid of the smell on everything but my shoes because I through the other stuff away (yes it was that bad). The smell lasted for weeks on my shoes, even after using Simple Green (straight out of the gallon container) and scrubbing them, which worked pretty well but I still left them in the laundry room so they didn't stink up the closet. Oh, and I washed the shoe laces twice!! And yeah....they still smelled.



After letting the gas drain all over the place, I took out a few more bolts and brackets to end up with all this. The two pieces that are on top are very heavy and if you look at the bottom left, this is the shower head that I got my bath with. All these pieces below had gas flow them at one time, and they all reeked of it. I figure that all this weights around 150 pounds.

I plan on keeping the piece on the bottom right because this is the part that you could see spinning when you pumped gas into your car. I thought it would be cool if I could have it spinning once I was finished with the whole thing. But I'll have to come up with a way to either plug the gas line off or make a new center section for it. Looks like another project to work on!!!!



Here is the top section of the pump which is in pretty good shape. You can see the end of the part that I'm keeping which has the spinner in it. Most of the numbers are gone from the wheels but I found out that you can buy just about anything you want for these pumps online. Notice the dollar amount at the bottom which only has double digits. It's hard to make out but I think the first number was a "3" which would put the cost at 35 cents a gallon. What a difference there is now.


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