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Old 03-26-2011, 12:25 AM   #1
centralcalvette
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Default 69 427 dipstick color/pics

Ok, so I got the correct length dipstick tube and dipstick for my 69 427/390, what color should they be? Pics would be great. Thanks in advance...
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Old 03-26-2011, 08:59 AM   #2
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The finish of both the dipstick and the tube should be natural, not painted. Big blocks should have a red colored, plastic plug in the end.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:11 AM   #3
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Hi ccv,
The info I have indicates the gauge and tube are 'natural'; sort of a dark gray. The guage handle had a white plastic plug in the end originally.
Here's a picture of the gauge on my small block w/black plug, ( I should be so lucky as to have a 427 car), I'd think the bb gauge would be the same material and finish.
Regards,
Alan.

Click the image to open in full size.

Last edited by Alan 71; 03-26-2011 at 09:14 AM.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capevettes View Post
The finish of both the dipstick and the tube should be natural, not painted. Big blocks should have a red colored, plastic plug in the end.
This is not correct, late 67 trough 69 BB's used a dipstick with a white plastic plug. The red one was used with 70-74 BB's, which is a different length dipstick and uses a completely different tube.

65-67 use the same tube as the 69, but have a salmon colored plug.

The dipsticks are all a natural, unpainted finish.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:18 AM   #5
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Hi ccv and cape,
You beat me to it while I was looking for my picture.
I'm thinking the red button was for 70+ model year BBs maybe?
Regards,
Alan

PS: Well this is really getting out of sequence now!

Last edited by Alan 71; 03-26-2011 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 03-26-2011, 10:18 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gbvette62 View Post
This is not correct, late 67 trough 69 BB's used a dipstick with a white plastic plug. The red one was used with 70-74 BB's, which is a different length dipstick and uses a completely different tube.

65-67 use the same tube as the 69, but have a salmon colored plug.

The dipsticks are all a natural, unpainted finish.
At the risk of sounding argumentative You are incorrect. I will read from the 68/69 Judging Manual for 68/69:

"Small blocks have a black plug, and 427 engines have a red plug, which may be faded. Finish of the dipstick is natural."

I just went out into the garage to confirm: My 68 427/390 is all original under the hood and it has the red plug and natural finish. The red plug is at the end of the circular portion of the dipstick where your finger goes as you pull the dipstick out.
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Old 03-26-2011, 10:37 AM   #7
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Quote:
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At the risk of sounding argumentative You are incorrect. I will read from the 68/69 Judging Manual for 68/69:

"Small blocks have a black plug, and 427 engines have a red plug, which may be faded. Finish of the dipstick is natural."

I just went out into the garage to confirm: My 68 427/390 is all original under the hood and it has the red plug and natural finish. The red plug is at the end of the circular portion of the dipstick where your finger goes as you pull the dipstick out.
There was quite a discussion on the NCRS board last fall regarding this very subject. Apparently the late 68 to early 69 BBs had a white plug. My 69 non-A/C BB was buit in April and has a white plug. Late 69s or those with A/C were being debated...red plug, various lengths...no firm resolution.
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Old 03-26-2011, 10:43 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Faster Rat View Post
There was quite a discussion on the NCRS board last fall regarding this very subject. Apparently the late 68 to early 69 BBs had a white plug. My 69 non-A/C BB was buit in April and has a white plug. Late 69s or those with A/C were being debated...red plug, various lengths...no firm resolution.
I was not aware of that. My 68 is a basically unrestored original car and has the red plug/original dipstick. It is an early 68.
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Old 03-26-2011, 11:24 AM   #9
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Slightly off topic, but my late 71 BB AC car has a red cap.. never noticed it before
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Old 03-26-2011, 12:41 PM   #10
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Hi m7,
It appears that your red plug would be typical for a 71 bb car.
So, you can sleep soundly tonight, or find something else to toss and turn over.
Regards,
Alan
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Old 03-26-2011, 02:52 PM   #11
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Thanks all, that means I can just install my Willcox dipstick and tube as is, without any "I may as well...paint/prep/rebuild/repair/make look orig extra steps", one step closer to summer cruising, I appreciate the feedback...Michael
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Old 03-26-2011, 08:08 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capevettes View Post
At the risk of sounding argumentative You are incorrect. I will read from the 68/69 Judging Manual for 68/69:
Sorry about that, I was in a hurry this morning. I caught that when I posted it and was going to change it to "This is incorrect", but forgot. I didn't intend to be so harsh.:o

Quote:
"Small blocks have a black plug, and 427 engines have a red plug, which may be faded. Finish of the dipstick is natural."

I just went out into the garage to confirm: My 68 427/390 is all original under the hood and it has the red plug and natural finish. The red plug is at the end of the circular portion of the dipstick where your finger goes as you pull the dipstick out.
The judging manual has listed the red one for 68 & 69's, even though Chevrolet information differed.

The 69 assembly manual lists the dipstick as part number 3959158, and the tube as 3870324. This is the white button dipstick.

The red button dipstick is part number 3981089 and the tube is 3981088. This is the dipstick that was used in all 454's. This dipstick and tube, are longer than the 396 & 427 dipsticks.

Chevrolet discontinued the the white button dipstick in 70 or 71. The only dipstick listed in the 1972 Parts Book for any 396, 427, or 454, is the red button dipstick, 3981089. The parts book notes that if you are using this dipstick, it must be use with tube 3981088.

Because Chevrolet discontiuned the white button dipstick so soon after introducing the red one, the red one was the only one available for years, and ended up on a lot of BB Corvettes. I think that it's been less than 10 years, that the info about the white button dipsticks, has been known. I don't know how long it's been since the 68-69 Judging Manual has been updated, but I'm guessing that the next edition will list the white button dipstick for BB's.
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Old 04-06-2011, 12:51 PM   #13
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My 1969 427/435 car was built Sept. 29, 1969 and I have the faded red plug, seemingly original.
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Old 04-06-2011, 07:56 PM   #14
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If you want that dipstick to remain 'natural' colored (instead of "rust" colored), I suggest you give it a shot of clear engine enamel.
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Old 04-07-2011, 12:12 AM   #15
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Thanks 7T1vette, I hit it with wd40 and installed it. Easy enough "RE-DO", I'll hit it with clear next chance I get...
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Old 04-07-2011, 11:11 AM   #16
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WD-40 will dry-up pretty quickly. If you want to keep it totally 'natural', a thin wipe of 3-in-1 oil would do better for you. Either way, use lacquer thinner to clean it off really well before putting clear on it.
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Old 04-07-2011, 09:31 PM   #17
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Jeez..... Of course I had to walk out to the garage (detached) in the rain to see whats on mine. I knew it was the natural finish but never noticed the plug. Mine is red - 69 427/390 - and original as far as I can tell.
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Old 04-08-2011, 01:18 PM   #18
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You just gotta love this forum !!! I'm thinking that twenty year from now we'll still be here perfecting and fixing our rides...
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Old 04-08-2011, 08:23 PM   #19
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Quote:
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You just gotta love this forum !!! I'm thinking that twenty year from now we'll still be here perfecting and fixing our rides...
Ain't it great! Really not planning on being here 20 years from now.
Think I'll have me dessert first.
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:28 PM   #20
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Hey guys this got me lookin at my dipstick can somebody give the dipstick tube length and corresponding dipstick overall length and length from stop to tip.
I don't have original engine and have three different dipsticks and tubes I can use all different in some way.
Pretty sure I have the correct oil pan.
Thanks for any help.
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:28 PM
 
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