The Carburetor Shop LLC
204 East 15th Street
Eldon, Missouri 65026
GM FACTORY TRIPOWER AIR CLEANERS
This page is here to help muscle car enthusiasts to identify the original air cleaner used with their original GM tripower. OK, for all you non-Pontiac people, these are technically three two-barrel setups. I believe Pontiac was the only company to identify them as tripower. And while we might have some of these for sale, this page should be regarded as an information only page. I will list what I currently believe to be true. I WELCOME any DOCUMENTED corrections or additions.
At one time or another, in alphabetical order, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, and Pontiac all used the three two-barrel setups as factory equipment. To my knowledge, Buick never had a three two-barrel factory setup (although they did have a two two-barrel setup called compound carburetion in the early 1940’s). The first GM division to my knowledge to offer a multiple carb setup would be Cadillac, which offered a two one-barrel setup on both the V-12 and V-16, and a two two-barrel setup on the later V-16’s. Also, Buick offered a highly unsuccessful "compound carburetion" (2 x 2) setup in 1941 and 1942. But I have digressed. Back to the factory three two-barrel setups.
Most, possibly all, of the service instructions were originally silk-screened onto the metal air cleaners. However, silk-screening is quite difficult for the individual enthusiasts, and shipping costs preclude an enthusiast shipping the painted air cleaner to a specialty company. We did silk-screen when we were still restoring tri-power air cleaners, but since we no longer do so, we have disposed of our silk screens. Decals seem to be accepted by most, probably all, judging authorities. 40 years ago, we sent photos of much of this data to a decal company. We have pictured decals for clarity on this site.
DIVISION INDEX SECTION
1958 – Cadillac part number 1553946
1959 – Cadillac part number 1554277
1960 – Cadillac part number 1554277
1958 – Early Chevrolet part number 1553222
1958 – Late Chevrolet part number 1553863
1959 – Chevrolet part number 1553998
1960 – Chevrolet part number 1553998
1961 – Chevrolet part number 1553998
1957 – Early (oil bath) Oldsmobile part number 1553091
1957 – Late (paper element) Oldsmobile part number 1553292
1958 – Oldsmobile part number 1553399
1957 – Pontiac part number 1553222
1958 – Standard Pontiac part number 1553402
1958 – W/Air suspension Pontiac part number 1553854
1959 – Pontiac part number 1554060
1960 – Pontiac part number 1554060
1961 – Standard Pontiac part number 5645517
1961 – W/AC Pontiac part number 5646090
1961 Super Duty
1962 - Standard Pontiac part number 5645517
1962 – W/AC Pontiac part number 5646090
1963 – Pontiac part number 5646090
1964 w/389 – Federal Pontiac part number 5646090
1964 w/389 – California Pontiac part number 6419728
1964 w/421 – Federal Pontiac part number 9776733
1964 w/421 – California Pontiac part number 9776734
1965 w/389 – Federal Pontiac part number 6421204
1965 w/389 – California Pontiac part number 6421205
1965 w/421 – Federal Pontiac part number 6421206
1965 w/421 – California Pontiac part number 6421207
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION SECTION
1553998 was used on 1959 through 1961 Chevrolet. The lid is of the “smooth” design. Snorkels are clocked at approximately 1 and 9. Note that the 9 o’clock snorkel is approximately ˝ the length of the 1 o’clock snorkel. All three carburetors are of the smaller size.
1553091 was the first design aircleaner used on the 1957 J2, and was the only oil bath factory air cleaner used on the three two-barrel setups. This was a delta-wing design, differing from the batwing design used on several GM dual quads. All three carburetors are of the smaller size.
1553292 was the second design aircleaner used on the 1957 J2. This aircleaner, like all of the other GM three two-barrel setups except the first design Oldsmobile, used a round paper element. All three carburetors are of the smaller design. Snorkels clock at approximately 10:00 and 12:00. Note 10:00 snorkel is much smaller than 12:00 snorkel.
1553402 was the standard 1958 tri-power air cleaner
1553854 was the 1958 tri-power air cleaner with the attachment for the air suspension pump.
1959 and 1960
1554060 was used on 1959 and 1960 Pontiac. Lid is of the smooth design. Snorkels clock at approximately 11 and 1:30. Both snorkels are the same length. The center carburetor is of the smaller size, while the two end carburetors are of the larger size. Note the fitting on the drivers side for the air suspension pump.
5645517 was used on 1961 and 1962 Pontiacs without air conditioning. The lid is of the smooth design. Snorkels clock at approximately 10:30 and 12:30. Both snorkels are of the same length. The center carburetor is of the smaller size, while both end carburetors are the larger size. Note the center line of the three carburetor “stacks” is offset from the center line of the air cleaner.
5646090 was used on 1961 and 1962 Pontiacs with air conditioning, all 1963 Pontiacs, and 1964 Federal Pontiacs with 389 engine. Lid is of the smooth design. Snorkels are clocked at approximate 12:30 and 2:30. Both snorkels are of the same length. The center carburetor is of the smaller size, while the two end carburetors are of the larger size.
This air cleaner was used with the aluminum super duty manifold in 1961. The air cleaner has no snorkels. Basically 5645517 with the snorkels removed, and seven oval slots the same size as the snorkel openings along the back side of the air cleaner. The slots measure 4 1/4 inch wide by 1 7/8 inch tall spaced 3/4 of an inch apart. The lid is of the smooth design. The center carburetor was of the smaller size, while the two end carburetors are the larger size.