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1961 Olds F-85 - Memories

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Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Dec 29, 2005, 8:48 AM

Post #1 of 3 (2346 views)
1961 Olds F-85 - Memories Sign In

America was figting back to make a smaller car. They only made that body for '61 and '62. Neat car in many ways with a real olds V8 only 215 cubic inches and all aluminum but sleeved for the the cylinders. They gave up rights to engine to I think Rover of the U.K. a bit later. The air cleaner said " Rockette". Small car for the times but you could still get six people in it. Seat belts - what are they?? It's biggest problem for me was its split driveshaft which did its splined job in the middle with a center bearing for support. Never could stop that from causing a vibration under load.?? I'll call it driveshaft whip. That car was a standard trans with a three speed on the column which we call "Three on the tree". Not synchcroed for first gear so you had to learn how to do accurate double clutching if you wanted first gear before you were at a complete stop.

Fun memories, easy car to work on but it needed lots of rubber stuff and brake work. Body was near new. - T

Anonymous Poster

Jan 12, 2008, 6:08 PM

Post #2 of 3 (1973 views)
Re: 1961 Olds F-85 - Memories Sign In

the 215 alum. enginge was neet tiny and vey light about 300 lbs running the olds and buick were diff. i used this to power a lotus elan and a67 volvo 144 did lots of mods. etc

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Jan 13, 2008, 1:46 AM

Post #3 of 3 (1972 views)
Re: 1961 Olds F-85 - Memories Sign In

GM gave out too quickly on that engine. I recall with no mistakes it could get 30 MPG on a trip. Not a road burner but could rev to high RPMs and not object like the high cube engines did.

This looked like a little car at the time. Many people were complaining that most cars were as big as a house and they were thru the 50s especially. Take that car right now and it's the size of what we now call full size cars. It had seating for six, a trunk you could use, and room to service the engine unlike today. GM in their infinate wisdom came back with a much needed small car nine years later called the Vega which by idea was fine but what a mess for an engine and body! In just a year or two the top of the front fenders had rust holes in them. Engines with aluminum blocks were silicone impregnated (big freaking mistake) and every one I knew of was blowing oil by 40k. I only hear of those now with the rare Cosworth job they did make,


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