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Projects 1927 Roadster on 1931 chassis

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by DesmoDog, Sep 13, 2016.

  1. I used these for my body mounts. They are 2 1/2'' washers with 3/8'' thick rubber made to the same size. They fit perfectly up in the sub frames cross members. I got the washers from work from wheel chair docking systems and I can add more to any to shim the body to get the doors shutting well.
    With the rear body repair, I would just cut along the top just under the fold and get it fitting then add a filler piece to fill the gap. JW
    bct, brEad and biggeorge like this.
  2. Year end update cuz it seems like the thing to do.

    The crossmember I used is set up for an F1 pedal and a single circuit master. I bought an adapter to go dual circuit but found out the crossmember was made in a way it would take a lot of work to mod the crossmember to make the adapter and MC fit.

    Long story short I went back on forth on doing it the easy way with the old MC, or putting the work in on a dual MC. Either way I was going to use the adapter because it pushed the master cylinder back. Without it, the single circuit MC was kind of buried in the crossmember and it would have been a pain to get to the cover to fill it.

    I started shaving the adapter down to fit. It became pretty clear that by the time I could make it fit, the hole to mount the dual master would be cut into. Then it occured to me to move the MC mount hole on that side and redrill the master to match. Trim/grind off the excess, done.


    The downside is, the master cylinder is no longer bolt on. I guess if I'm going to make a cross country drive in this 90 year old car with no top or windows I'll mod another MC and toss it in the huge trunk for a spare. Only one picture this time, it was one of those deals I didn't feel like stopping once I got started.

    Now I get to move on to making the pedal work. It may not have enough travel to make the dual circuit work on one circuit, but at least I have the MC in place now to figure that out. If all else fails, I can still go back to the single circuit MC.

    That's it for this year. Happy New Year everybody!
    Okie Pete, brEad, Squablow and 3 others like this.
  3. All the best for the new year Craig and looking forward to following along in 2018. I took my T out for a test drive today and all went much to plan. I hope you keep at the dual M/C for modern safety sake. I made my own pedal box for my single (39-48 M/C) unit and just had to make an adapter out of 10mm plate (just over 3/8'') that worked very well. JW
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2017
    Okie Pete, brEad and Stogy like this.
  4. Dago 88
    Joined: Mar 4, 2006
    Posts: 2,049

    Dago 88

    '27 on A rails we had a few years ago. My Roadster.jpg
  5. Hi Craig, hows it going with the Roadster etc? :) JW
  6. Yeah... it's been sidelined for a while.

    At the beginning of the year I got a bout of cabin fever, and after years of threatening to put together an OT track bike I finally put my money where my mouth is. I stumbled across an ad for a bike that normally would have never caught my eye (as in it's not a Ducati, though it is Italian)... but it had some trick parts on it and I started thinking. One thing led to another and there ya go. I figured it would take a couple weeks and not a whole bunch of money to throw together. It would be a nice quick break from the car. And it could have been, but where's the fun in that?

    I'm probably eight weeks into it now and I've got another 4-6 weeks to go near as I can tell. Project creep is a slippery slope. Actually the time and money aren't the only reasons the car is being ignored. It also pushed my shop to critical mass. The roadster is now shoved into the corner and I have no room to work on it anyway until the bikes are moved back to the garage (probably another few weeks).

    Which is all a long winded way of saying I kind of stepped in it, project wise, so the roadster has been delayed. I likely won't get back to work on it until sometime in May. Hopefully then I can get more focused and finish things instead of jumping around with little progress like I had been doing.

    Thanks for asking.
    brEad and 26 T Ford RPU like this.
  7. Great to hear from you and I have done similar to that while working on my T, I took a 6 month break to focus and plan but I just needed a break in the end. The good thing is its there waiting patiently in the corner. Have fun with the Bikes. :cool::D JW
  8. 41rodderz
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 5,390

    from Oregon

    That car is sweet looking .
  9. Or maybe even the end of July!

    The OT bike project turned into another problem child - it's been to the track once but never even made it to tech, then was supposed to be run yesterday but the weather wouldn't cooperate. Maybe next month.

    Whatever. The good news is, I finally started working on this thing again. Small steps - I got the first four body bolts installed. Sort of. Everything will likley get redone in the final rendition but the proof of concept is there, and now the body won't move on the frame every time I try to move the car.

    Needs a little TLC in this area but that will come later. I'm guessing when I get around to figuring out the clutch pedal linkage I'll need to do some tweaking anyway.

    The other side will need even more work.

    And the rear two. I made some brackets to go on the frame under the body's crossmember, but screwed up so will have to make them again.

    I have 1/8" rubber pads at each bolt right now, and will be adding another 4-6 more bolts in the future. They'll need to be spaced differently though. Flipping the stock crossmember means it now lines up with a crossmemeber on the body, so I'll add one each side there. Then there are the two on the rear axle crossmember - the frame needs some mods there as the '27 body is a touch wider than the '31 frame, so the bolt holes don't quite line up. Should be an easy fix. The Turtledeck also bolts on there so I'm leaving that one for now. And finally, if I remove the stock seat riser I'd gain access to another body crossmember. Depending on what I do with the seat I may add a couple bolts on that one too.

    So there it is. Probably the most boring update pics of the thread but at least it's progress!
    Okie Pete, OFT, 26 T Ford RPU and 4 others like this.
  10. Progress! Glad to see you back at it!
  11. Progress is progress, Craig, and its great to see you back on the T. :cool::D JW
  12. I spent some time thinking about how to get the clutch linkage to work. Decided I was overthinking it so I grabbed some scraps of steel channels and things and played around until I had something that looked like it would work. I'll eventually weld the channel to the frame but for now I'll bolt it down after I remove the body again and have some room to figure out where it should be. I haven't worked out how to get the pedal connected to the arm yet, but at least I have the pivot worked out. The arm is upside down in this shot to gain clearance for the clamps.



    Then I started trying to fit the t-deck again. Engine hoists come in handy. I started tugging on the body instead of just smashing it with hammers. It worked more or less but I have more time to put in. I'm starting to question my skills in getting this body and turtledeck to work out... Kinda sorta starting to search for a better t-deck, and body for that matter?

    The main reason to fit the turtledeck right now is to double check the location of the body now that it's bolted down. Depending on the angle I'm looking from it looks fine... in this pic it looks like the body has to come forward a little more(?) but that's not happening. This is where it's going to stay!

    Then it was time to move to the front of the car. Since I already had the engine hoist out I put a Model A hood on there to try to figure out if my radiator and grill shell were going to work. First step was to figure out where the hood needed to be so it didn't look like it was running uphill from the cowl to the grill.


    I went through a range to see how much "play" I had in the number, marking the grill shell. If I recall the numbers correctly, the limits seemed to be about 5-6" for too much and not enough. Then I pulled the radiator and tried to fit it into the shell. Oh oh... the top mounts on the radiator are too wide to fit. So I chopped them down. The mounts on the bottom seemed huge too, so I cut those down. Then I slipped the radiator into the shell again and discovered if I want to use a hood (I do, at least the top) the shell won't fit as close to the radiator as I thought. Long story short I may have to raise the body about 1/2" or so, it looks like I can only get 4 1/2 out of the shell and still fit it on the radiator. Only way to know for sure is to start chopping though!

    Stock height for reference

    I did a search on chopping shells and found some info. I'm not a big fan of just chopping a section out and welding the top and bottom together, the width (front to rear) is different. I saw one thread where the guy stretched the shell a bit but having near zero metalwork experience I kept searching.

    Covell has a video out covering chopping a '32 shell, YouTube has a short version of it. I like how he sections things, there's no having to deal with changes in width front to back.

    He cuts right up the center of the curve though. Probably a good choice if you're a great welder but I think it'd be easier to fix screw ups if that cut was moved out to the side. So... here's the plan I came up with.

    First cut is the blue line.
    Second cut is the red line. This is the 4.5" chop. (Disregard the 2.5 shown, that's unrelated and should say 3.5 anyway!)
    Third cut is the green line, front of the grill to the first cut. Now there will be a step in the shell where piece #1 will fit. Fit/tack piece 1 in place along cut 3 and decide on cut 4...
    The fourth cut is the black line, and may or may not happen. Basically the only reason to cut here is to weld piece 2 in this place. The only reason to do that is to replace the boss where the shell bolts to the radiator. Worth it? Maybe.

    I know some guys weld a brace across the shell before they cut it. I may do that? Also, the flats at the bottom of the shell are off on this, one side is about 1/4" longer from the boss to the edge than the other. Strangely there is a mark on the front of the shell that's even though, so I'm measuring from that for the cut locations when the time comes.
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018
    Nailhead A-V8, Okie Pete, OFT and 2 others like this.
  13. 1-SHOT
    Joined: Sep 23, 2014
    Posts: 2,175


    Try a friction jack with a clamp at the top and pushing off the subframe, put a piece of angle iron to spread the load at the bottom.
    Iwouls tack a tab between the sides and one across the opening so it won't try to get out of shape on you, that's what I did on mine. Sold it to Cyclone Kevin and he put it on the Wake Special
  14. I decided to not do cut 4, I'll press a dimple in the lower part for a bolt to hold it on or something, the less welding I do the better.


    You'll aslo notice I didn't put any bracing across before cutting it. My thought was I could fit the shell to the radiator if there was no brace. Yeah. Should have put the brace(s) on, I never fitted it anyway. It wasn't a huge deal to get it to fit but having the upper portion stay in it's correct shape wouldn't have hurt.

    Here it is after some welding. I've got more to do and it's not going as smoothly as I hoped but I'll get there. I'm glad I'm working with a reproduction though! It's a little less stressful knowing I'm not screwing up anything valuable.
    Okie Pete, rexrogers, slv63 and 6 others like this.
  15. I haven't put much time into the car lately, there have been other things I need to do. I did mess around with the hood more though. I think the body is closer to the right height than I thought, I'll probably raise it 1/4" the next time I mess with it and see how that looks.

    Here it is at the current height with a roughly mocked up hood. I have the radiator braces or rods or whatever they're called but haven't been able to install them yet. Model A parts are too short, the '32 parts I bought are too long so will need to be modified. For now some string will have to suffice to hold the shell in position.



    Looks pretty close to me. I'd put the Model A hood on there but it's about an inch too short.

    In other news, I did a little retail therapy last week and screwed up. I've been looking at ways to mount the headlights and finally decided to splurge and buy the So-Cal speed shop light bar that I really like. It's got the rod that runs between the two sides. I should have looked at the car before ordering it though, when it showed up I laid it on there and not surprisingly there's no way it will fit with the '32 shell on a radiator that sits about an inch and a half further forward than stock. Bummer. My other "favorite" was the aluminum Offy style stalks, but with the chopped shell they put the headlights higher than I'd like. Back to the drawing board I guess.

    Absolutely nothing will get done on the car for at least a week now so it'll be a while before the next update.
    Okie Pete, Texas36 and 26 T Ford RPU like this.
  16. Those hood lines look good to me. Can you post up a pic of the head light mount thing in position best you can, there could be a simple mod that just may let it work. JW
    Texas36 likes this.
  17. I went down to get a few pics of the headlight bar and realized I had it on backwards the first time... but it still doesn't fit.

    Here it is clamped on about as far back as it can go. It's on the part of the frame horn that curves down still though.

    I thought the bar would have a bump out for the '32 grill but apparently the bar sized for the Model A frame has a bar set up for a Model A grill. Makes sense I guess. Bumping this bar out in the middle would bring the mounting pads in so they'd be too narrow to fit the frame.

    This bar puts the headlights about 4" above the frame rail. The other style I like puts the headlights about 7" above the frame rail. I think that'd be too high with the chopped shell.

    They look a little further forward than I envisioned but I think I could get over that, especially after a grill insert is installed.

    I think my best bet would be to buy the individual headlight mounts the various places sell, then fabricate a bar to go between them that fits the grill shell. Or get a Model A headlight bar and start cutting and welding. I was trying to hit the easy button on this one!

    EDIT: And on further thought, I should probably get the front shock mounts on there before I get too committed to headlght mounts...
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2018
  18. I see what you mean and I like the lights positioning, has good overall balance. If you don't necessarily need chrome I would just refashion that one. Would the tie bar clear the grille if it was rotated a 1/4 turn forward? JW
  19. The bar is polished stainless, so plating isn't an issue. The thing is, to cut it up and reform/reweld I may as well start from something less expensive... return/resell this and do something different is the direction I'm thinking right now. My plans will likely change before I do anything though. Maybe a couple times. ;-)
    brEad and 26 T Ford RPU like this.
  20. I hear ya and that would fit mine. Always look forward to your updates.:D JW
  21. Had a little time today, I was supposed to be cleaning the basement and that led to finding a small leak in a water line and that led to playing around with the hood on my car. Hey, it's MY thought process, it doesn't have to make sense to anyone else.

    So yeah, the car. I modded the radiator braces and got those installed last week, so today I tossed the model A hood back on the car with the grill shell in place. First a shot showing how much longer the hood will need to be compared to a Model A.

    And here it is with the body about 1/4" off the frame. If you disregard the body lines on the Model A hood and only look at the top hinge, it doesn't look too far off?

    Then I got the idea that if I leveled off the body line, the hood would have the same angle as a model A Hood. Looked like I had to come up about 3/4" so I tossed a few pads under it on each side and put the hood back on. I didn't raise the rear of the body so the cowl line isn't quite right but close enough for what I'm doing.

    The body is too high off the frame for my liking there. My wife happened to be downstairs when I was doing this and I told her what I was up to, mentioning "I might have to put a skirt on it". To my amazement, she patted the turtle deck like you might pat a dog and said "every old girl deserves a nice skirt". Huh? She has shown pretty much zero interest in my projects over the years, where did that come from??? Of course she did then leave to go shopping so maybe she was just buttering me up...

    Anyway, there's no reason the angle of the hood has to match a Model A, and there's no way a stock Model A hood would work even if it was long enough, so I'll probably end up with it somewhere in between the two heights I've tried so far.
  22. Looks good! I also leverage a pretty random train of thought to get where I’m going sometimes you so I think I understand you. My wife falls in & out of love with my projects based on ride height, color, weather, day of week, and a host of unknowns. I just keep plugging away regardless.
  23. One more thing - I'm strongly considering cycle fenders at this point. Search for spare tire covers has begun...
    26 T Ford RPU likes this.
  24. I saw a couple at a recent swap a month back and cheap, but that's no help:rolleyes:. We have them here in fibreglass so you are not stuck with a set width. JW
  25. Almost four months with no progress, my New Year's Update isn't too impressive I'm afraid. I've basically spent two afternoons working on a template and then a trunk floor, and that's mostly to get more space to store parts so I can clean up a little.


    And that's it for 2018. At this rate I'm not going to live long enough to finish this thing!
    chev34ute, Jet96, biggeorge and 6 others like this.
  26. -Brent-
    Joined: Nov 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,017


    I need to figure out the location of that same cut in my floor.
  27. Mt Kiyotee
    Joined: Mar 7, 2019
    Posts: 18

    Mt Kiyotee
    Member year. Great build, dont quit on us now:D
    26 T Ford RPU likes this.
  28. Joe Tx
    Joined: Jan 25, 2008
    Posts: 256

    Joe Tx

    Did you find a spare tire cover? Think I have one at the shop. I sold my '27 T and '29 Model A pu, so I'm probably not going to use it. Joe.
    brEad and 26 T Ford RPU like this.
  29. chev34ute
    Joined: Nov 13, 2011
    Posts: 995


    That’s an impressive template, I have some 27 T Roadster Panels I want to piece together, but no sub rails to build on. A template like that would enable me to construct a jig to build the sub rails to peice the body together. Is there any chance I can get dimensions ?
    It would really help me out.
    48fordnut likes this.
  30. Yeah... about that... I don't think I've touched the roadster since I last posted. In fact a few days ago a guy at work asked if I had any project vehicles at home and I forgot about this one. That's not a good sign! A lot of distractions lately, including picking up an off topic daily driver of the "I've always wanted one of these" variety. Most of my time/money has gone that direction most of this year.

    No I never found any covers, I got distracted and haven't looked for anything for a while. I'm not even sure how many I'd need for four fenders?

    I can take dimensions for you, though if it doesn't happen in the next week it may not be until the end of the month. I'll be out of town for a while.

    While I'm thinking of it - I never did find out if the tulip panel is supposed to be flat (across car) or arched? The deck lid is flat at the edge, the tulip panel is arched. One of them is wrong.

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