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Projects 1928 Model A Intro & Build Suggestions

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Marty Escarcega, Sep 26, 2018.

  1. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Thought I would introduce myself and car. After lusting for a number of years to build an old school hot rod (my first since my teen years where I stuffed a Ford 302 into a Pinto station wagon), I finally found something local that tripped my trigger. 1928 Model A Tudor. Pretty solid car, it appears to have 74K miles on it, it appears to me the body was off and someone rebuilt the banjo rear end, transmission and engine. No smoke no leaks but there is a clutch issue. Pedal goes to the floor and no engagement, at idle you can hear some squealing so I think there is a throw out bearing issue.
    Pictures of the car: https://photos.app.goo.gl/9dgiEq4TPAzhtGBj9

    I plan on pulling the engine to repair the clutch issue, so I can move it around and maybe even drive it occasionally.

    Long term, (and believe me I have tried to search and sift through all the messages relating to the topic, and here is where I'd like some advice) I want to put a 289 into it rather than an SBC. I know the SBF is a bit longer than the SBC, but I want to be *slightly* different and would rather put in a bit more effort. I would rather not have a slush box, but would like a 5 speed T5. Would a 93 Mustang with the 302HO engine, be a good donor for the transmission, which is said to be a World Class T5 and the differental and possibly driveshaft(shortened of course)?

    The 289 in question is a 1965 model 4V engine. I have been out of it so long, I would like to make sure the bellhousing bolt pattern from the 1993 Mustang will bolt up to the 1965 289 and what flywheel/cluch would I have to use? I like the idea of a hydraulic clutch vs. mechanical.

    Advice from those in the know, and those that have done the research or "been there done that" much appreciated.
    Marty
    Mesa, AZ
     
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  2. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 4,550

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Marty! The pictures. Where's the damn pictures?
    upload_2018-9-26_21-32-28.png
     
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  3. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Click the link in the message!!
     
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  4. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 2,968

    Blues4U
    Member
    from So Cal

    Well, for a first hot rod build a SBF is a wrong engine choice IMO. Actually, I just don't like that engine in a pre-war Ford, but besides that you're just making things much harder for yourself; and at the end of the day you end up with an ugly engine, it's just a wrong choice. You can make a SBF look decent in a hot rod, but it's not easy and most of them look like crap. If it's just a matter of not wanting to use a SBC, there are other engine choices out there. If you want a Ford in a Ford, go with a Y-block. That's a good looking engine, and they sound great. Or, really do it right and stuff an FE in there. But you're gonna do what you want to do, so just remember you heard it here, wrong choice.
     
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  5. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 4,550

    Bandit Billy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I will. My bloody laptop battery died as I sent that post.
     
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  6. Mr48chev
    Joined: Dec 28, 2007
    Posts: 24,015

    Mr48chev
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Well as long as you don't stick a set of those "Cobra" or the cheap looking chrome "powered by Ford" valve covers on it life is good. True they aren't the prettiest engine but I'd have to believe that particular 65 289 has some history with you and that is a prime incentive to use it an so be it. FE Ford engines barely fit in the Fords that were built for them. Reliable as all hell but rather bulky. Y blocks are The only Ford engine I'd have on the place outside of flatheads. Even then I don't think they might be the best for an A just prettier.
    First thing I would do is start looking for Model A's that have small block Fords in them be it on the net, in magazines or better yet at events. There have to be a few at Goodguys or NSRA events if you have one within a reasonable distance or any other rod trot with a full field of cars. I have to think you are going to end pretty much like this one with a modified firewall. https://www.hemmings.com/classifieds/cars-for-sale/ford/unspecified/1963689.html
     
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  7. 27 Tall T
    Joined: Dec 16, 2005
    Posts: 241

    27 Tall T
    Member
    from Butler Pa.

    I put a 302 in my 29 CC pickup with a C4 20180217_144637.jpg
     
  8. 2935ford
    Joined: Jan 6, 2006
    Posts: 2,928

    2935ford
    Member

    ^^^^^^
    Doesn't look ugly to me! :)
     
  9. Packrat
    Joined: Aug 25, 2005
    Posts: 385

    Packrat
    Member

    That's a good looking motor!
     
  10. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    I appreciate the responses guys. I think I am going to go with the SHORT water pump and pulleys from CVF Racing, shortens up the front by 1-1/2", not terribly expensive. Anyone use them?
    https://tinyurl.com/ydgbaaa5
    https://tinyurl.com/ya6smfqw
    27 Tall T, car looks great. I can't see from your picture, but did you move the firewall back? If so, how much? Hoping to use the short water pump and pulleys from CVF Racing, shortens up the front of the block about 1.5"
    Marty
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2018
  11. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Things happen fast...looks like I am buying the donor 1993 Mustang GT with 302 HO motor. My primary interest was the World Class T5 the owner installed in it and the differential. (I'll part the rest out) It seems the rear end is 59-11/44" wide while the model A width is 56". So thoughts on running as is or narrow it?

    Marty
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2018
  12. Dirk35
    Joined: Mar 8, 2001
    Posts: 1,889

    Dirk35
    Member

    I put a 302 with a C4 in my 1935 Ford Pick Up.

    You need to plan to research front sump vs rear sump oil pans. I ended up finding a rear sump from an 80's bronco. You'll also most like have to use a remote oil filter kit which you can get from any parts store. You'll need to research internally vs externally balanced crank shafts and make sure you get the correct balancer and flex plate/flywheel (I remember one was a 50oz flex plate) that matches your crank and balancer. I see you plan to use a manual transmission, but if you do go with a C4, you'll need to make sure get the correct number of teeth on the flex plate. I think they were 157 vs 164 tooth. Keep in mind that serpentine belt water pumps rotate the reverse direction of a normal water pump.

    Plan to go absolutely insane finding the correct pulley combination if you plan on using power steering or a/c unless you just call March Pulleys and they will have you measure everything you need on the phone with them and send you the correct pulleys. I literally (yes literally, not figuratively) had a stack of Small Block Ford pulleys up to my chin (I'm 5'9") and still couldn't make them work by the time I called March.

    I also put my engine in pretty low so I had to use an electric fan. I planned to use a mechanical fan (hence the extra 2" firewall recess) but it was too low to clear to the lower radiator hose. In hind sight, I should have planned a little better cause that much firewall recess really took away from the leg room in the cab of the pickup.

    I also had to use valve cover spacers to clear the roller rockers I used. So add that to your list if you plan to build up the internals of your engine.

    [​IMG][​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2018
  13. missysdad1
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,543

    missysdad1
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    There are very few good reasons to choose a SBF over a SBC in a '28 - 29 Model A with Model A frame. Using an engine you already have is probably the worst reason in the long run - you might save a little money now but you'll pay for it with more headaches in the long run. And, as has been mentioned already the installation just isn't going to be pretty when you're done. Even with a short water pump you're going to have to cut the firewall to get it in, and that starts a whole chain of compromises that you're not going to like. Not only will the build be more difficult - especially for a beginer - but the resale value of the finished car will also suffer.

    I know I'm going to get a whole truckload of shit from the "ford-in-a-ford" crowd, but I'm giving it to you straight. I currently have Model A's with Ford motors and with Chevy motors. There's no doubt that the Chevy makes a better overall finished product. Good luck with your decision.

    Edit: One of my Model A's has the same GT combination you speak of, including the rear axle. Not only is the motor too long but the GT axle is 'way too wide. Not a good match at all. SBC / T5 / 9" is the golden combination. Again, good luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2018
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  14. Dirk35
    Joined: Mar 8, 2001
    Posts: 1,889

    Dirk35
    Member

    This is wise, take note. After putting the 302 SBF in the 1935 PU, and a 390 FE Ford Engine in my 49 Ford PU, I put a SBC in my Model A and my 34 Ford Sedan, and don't regret the "Cookie Cutter" route at all. Don't get me wrong, I don't regret using either of the two Ford engines in my previous vehicles, it was just much easier to go the SBC route.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of putting a Ford in a Ford, and if that is what you want, then I strongly recommend doing it. Its just easier to use the SBC to get to a driving vehicle.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2018
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  15. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    I appreciate the responses so far guys. I understand the concern with SBC vs. SBF. I have no issues with fabrication. In fact I have CNC machines in my garage, tig/mig/plasma. The car is for me. I tend not to want a car like the rest. If it means a little extra effort on my part, blood sweat and tears, then so be it. Might I kick myself later, perhaps. Not too late to turn back but so far the cars with SBFs the guys are posting look pretty good to me. I'm retired, 55 in November, life is too short not to do things you always wanted to do. I held back for a long time for the right moment, so I knew I had the ability to finish it off. I also appreciate and respect everyone's opinions and builds.

    MissysDad1, did you document the car you built with the Mustang drive train? Love to see pictures of the mess I'm getting myself into. Why did you build it?
    Marty
     
  16. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Geez, is the SBF that much longer than the SBC? I thought the short water pump giving me an extra 1.5" up front would help quite a bit. I thought I saw where folks didn't cut the firewall, but could be mistaken...
    I do have the engine, but am in pretty cheap. Could sell it, by the time I part out the Mustang, it will pay for the T5 but now its for a SBF instead of a SBC....now is the time to decide. I have plenty of time God willing....
    Thanks guys,
    Marty
     
  17. missysdad1
    Joined: Dec 9, 2008
    Posts: 2,543

    missysdad1
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I wish I had a nickle for every "but, but, but..." response like yours I've heard over the years. My only suggestion is to look at a lot more SBF /Model A combinations critically before you start cutting yours up. Once you are familiar with what you're looking at you might just change your mind.

    My Ford-powered Model A (my avitar photo) is a '30 with a Deuce frame so it's not like yours at all. Still, even with the longer engine compartment it has the firewall pushed back to get the SBF into place. I did a "pictures-only sight unseen" trade for it. Looked good in the pictures but turned out to be less than satisfactory in real life. There's just no way to get 10 pounds of Ford motor in a 5-pound Model A and do it neatly.
     
  18. Dirk35
    Joined: Mar 8, 2001
    Posts: 1,889

    Dirk35
    Member

    This is the firewall recess I did on my Model A Sedan. It was originally a Hot Rod that was built in the early 80s. There isn't a panel or piece of it that I haven't had to re-do to make it "right". Check out the original hole for the master cylinder.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2018
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  19. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 2,968

    Blues4U
    Member
    from So Cal

    Not to beat a dead horse, but a SBF is probably the worst engine choice you could make. If you really don't want to use a SBC, I understand people have those emotions, there are other engine choices out there, all of which would be better than a SBF.

    Look, here's a CL ad in your area for a couple of Buick 401 Nailhead's: https://tulsa.craigslist.org/pts/d/buick-401-nailhead-engines/6654839316.html

    Here's an Olds 324, w/ trans: https://oklahomacity.craigslist.org/pts/d/1955-oldsmobile-rocket-324/6693393180.html

    Those aren't "easy" installations either, if you aren't afraid of a challenge, but the end result will be far better than a SBF. They are traditional engines, they were out there fighting it out against the SBC in the 50's and early 60's. Use of one of these will not only gain you respect among knowledgeable hot rodders out there, but in the event you ever put the car up for sale will have a far larger market & command far better resale value than using a SBF.

    Just to clarify, I don't dislike the SBF at all, I love that engine, IN THE RIGHT APPLICATION. A pre-war Ford isn't the right application, IMO. (really I'm not especially fond of them in anything earlier than a mid-60's and up car or truck)
     
  20. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 2,968

    Blues4U
    Member
    from So Cal

    Nice work!
     
  21. 27 Tall T
    Joined: Dec 16, 2005
    Posts: 241

    27 Tall T
    Member
    from Butler Pa.

    I moved firewall back four inches, used short pump
     
  22. brianf31
    Joined: Aug 11, 2003
    Posts: 373

    brianf31
    Member

    Kudos to you for avoiding the abomination that is a Chevy-In-A-Ford. If you have fab skills, you can do a SBF in a Model A without much trouble. You're mainly looking at a firewall recess and fabbed motor mounts, of course. Here's a 351C with CVF single row pulleys in my '31.

    right front qtr.jpg

    left side.jpg

    cut firewall.jpg

    installed.jpg


    engine_side.jpg
    What you will want to do is some layout work before you start chopping everything up. Remove the old engine and lower firewall and prop up the 5.0 short block in the frame. Slide it back under the firewall about 3" for starters.

    Install your chosen water pump, pulleys and fan. Move the engine until you have an inch or so clearance between the fan and back of the radiator. If you are planning on running a stock hood, you will want the grill and radiator to be in the stock location. Otherwise, you could push the grill forward a bit to gain clearance. Alternately, you could run a pusher electric fan to get rid of the mechanical fan. Just don't push it out too far or the proportions will be unsightly.

    Step back and make sure you can live with the arrangement before you begin cutting and welding. Check for trans fit and pedal, foot clearance. Consider that you will need to run a larger than normal trans cover to accommodate engine set-back.

    Hydraulic pump or Mustang clutch cable will be much easier than an old Z-bar set-up. I'd recommend a narrower rear like an 8" out of a '70s Maverick. I'm running a 9" out of a 69 Mustang but I don't have fenders to worry about.

    Rear 9-22-2018.jpg
    right rear qtr.jpg
     
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  23. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Thank you Brianf31 for the posts and the encouragement. Back in the day, it was put together what you had and go fast. I appreciate any effort put into a hot rod. Its a personal thing. I have long watched others enjoy their cars cruising up and down the roads and at shows. I appreciate all the effort and thought they put into them, from the rat rods to the show cars, from the stock cars to the highly insanely modified ones. Its about what YOU want to do to your car.
    Asking for thoughts and advice is a good thing. Folks that have been there done that....ultimately the decision is up to you as the builder what you want to do. If you stray away from the mainstream, you just gotta be aware that you may or may not make the right move. I get that, understand it. I am fully capable of fabricating a car. Sheetmetal forming, not my forte' doesn't mean I may not want to try a small project to learn. Welding, machining, I can do, I have lathe, 2 CNC mills etc. 30+ years of collecting.

    I want to build my car now, and I appreciate everyone's .02. Thank you for that. It makes me think about what I need to do before I do it. Oh and yes, absolutely, mock up is important! Just hanging an engine, trans there, seeing what's what before cutting anything up. I thank those that pointed to me to the Ford Explorer differential and the small axle mod. Perfect! These tips and ideas are invaluable.

    If I can put a 302 V8 in a Ford Pinto Station Wagon at 18, I think with some thought, I can put a 289 in a Model A Ford at 55, and try and make a clean install of it. There in lies the challenge. :) Pinto V8.jpg
     
  24. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

    Here is a nice clean example of a small block Ford in an A, that at least in the photo, does not appear that the firewall has been modified.
    There has been some obvious effort to make a nice clean install for sure.

    SBF in an A.JPG
     
  25. Marty Escarcega
    Joined: Sep 23, 2018
    Posts: 23

    Marty Escarcega
    Member
    from Mesa, AZ

  26. 2”


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
  27. Oops try 3 1/2”


    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
  28. The good thing with a ford is the distributer is at the front so you just have to recess the bottom half of the firewall and it will fit



    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
     
  29. Marty,

    I see know one answered you on the clutch and flywheel yet..

    As long as your 289 has the 6 bolt bell housing it will fit from a 302/5.0...

    the 260 early 289's had a 5 bolt bell housing

    Now the flywheel gets a little tricky they fit 65-79 289/302

    Then 86 up 302/5.0 there is a gap for some reason and also clutch sizes differ.

    The early one had 10 and 11 inch clutches then later was 10.5.

    ALL the flywheels was 157 tooth and 13 inch

    ALL clutches had a 10 tooth and 1 1/16 diameter through out the years

    you will have to hybrid the 2 for the early engine and late trans.. get a early clutch set then a late release bearing and you should be good to go...

    BTW... If you want a cool looking 302 there is one not far away from you in ANTHEM and a member here listed in for sale..

    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/ford-302-engine-tripower.1124282/


    Good luck on your build......
     

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