(Click on the small images to see the full-size picture.)
Don had pulled the pan and discovered that the oil return tube from the rear main was missing. Apparently it had been removed by a previous owner, and while you might have suspected the tube to be in the bottom of the pan, it was not. Don said that it had never had the tube as long as he has owned the car.
The plan was to remove the rear main bearing cap, replace the tube, and then bolt it all back together. Well, as is so true of our As, you never know what you're going to find when you start into something. And this was so for Don. After getting the pan off and removing the cap, this is what he found: Seems there was a good reason there was no oil return tube: the threaded boss in the rear main cap was broken away!
Making a short story long: several hours of laying around under the car with his neighbor, Mark Gibson, putting this new rear main cap on and taking it off and putting shims in and taking out shims and filing the cap all resulted in the final decision to:
Pull the engine and take it to Piranio's for new babbit.
A big thanks to Don and Shirley for hosting the tech session and providing lunch for all of us who were there. I know I learned something!