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Hot Rods '26/7 body on a driving stock A frame. Radiator?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Limey Kid, Aug 7, 2019.

  1. Limey Kid
    Joined: Mar 5, 2006
    Posts: 946

    Limey Kid
    Member

    A lot of guys are putting a '26/7 body onto a running driving Model A chassis. they fit fairly well, with one exception, the radiator/grille shell. The model A cowl is taller at the firewall than a T, and correspondingly so is the radiator/grille. I'm a firm believer that whatever grille you use, the top of it should be about 1 1/2" lower than the cowl. This means the hood top slopes down toward the grille. The simple answer would seem to be to lower the radiator/grille. Not so fast. Can't lower the radiator without lowering the front crossmember. No one wants that as it would raise the front of the car up. Next answer would seem to be shorten the radiator. If the radiator is shortened to fit the sectioned/lowered grille shell, the fan blades will slice the top hose.
    So you guys who are smarter than me, what have you done? I want to use a '26 grille shell with a '26 roadster on a Model A frame with its banger engine. What's the fix?
    Cheers,
    Stewart.
     
  2. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,567

    Inked Monkey
    Member

    Just buy a shorter radiator. I took about an inch or two out of the bottom of my A shell to match up with the 27 body. They sell aluminum radiators on egay made for a Model A with a 32 grille shell. They are a couple inches shorter and fit great. Just measure the size you need and compare.
     
  3. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 355

    irishsteve

    Can you shorten the fan blade enough,and still draw air with it?
     
  4. patmanta
    Joined: May 10, 2011
    Posts: 3,385

    patmanta
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Woburn, MA
    1. MASSACHUSETTS HAMB

    I'd suggest that cardboard is your friend. Mock up the shell you want, how you want it, then see what the cardboard template that fits comes out looking like, then take measurements on that and go shopping.

    A 64 Falcon/Mustang radiator is pretty small and a lot of cars run them. I have one mocked up in my AAV8 pickup and it has plenty of room but that is an unchopped 28/29 shell.
     
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  5. town sedan
    Joined: Aug 18, 2011
    Posts: 1,067

    town sedan
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I've never done it, but why can't a 26/27 shell & radiator be used with the Model A frame?
    -Dave
     
  6. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 811

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    I have a '26 T coupe. I built the frame to model A dimensions. I used an aluminum radiator from Ron Davis Radiators through Speedway. Fits in the shell. You have to be real careful of the radiator height to make it work. The bottom of the radiator is 1/8" above the crossmember. Trying to get everything under the hood of these T's can be a chore
     

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  7. Limey Kid
    Joined: Mar 5, 2006
    Posts: 946

    Limey Kid
    Member

    The fan blades will hit the top hose.
    Cheers,
    Stewart.
     
  8. Limey Kid
    Joined: Mar 5, 2006
    Posts: 946

    Limey Kid
    Member

    Another part of the puzzle. The model A engine sits high in the frame. Compounding that the water pump is mounted on the top of the engine, so the fan blade is much higher than later engines. SBF and SBC water pumps are closer to the crank, and have their top hoses off to the side of the top tank, the Model A is in the centre. Getting a core and top and bottom tanks to fit in a T grille shell isn't too difficult. The bigger problem as I see it is the top hose/fan blade interference. Nothing in the world of old cars is new, so I was thinking that someone must have solved this before.
    Cheers,
    Stewart.
     
  9. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 811

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    It's them old damn laws of PHYSICS. Two objects can't occupy the same place at the same time.
     
  10. Limey Kid
    Joined: Mar 5, 2006
    Posts: 946

    Limey Kid
    Member

    Just found this image on the interweb thingie. Up front I want to say this isn't any criticism of anybodys work or skills. This is purely a matter of opinion and personal aesthetics. I love the looks of this roadster, but the hood top running uphill to the grille shell would drive be crazy! This is a great example of the difficulties of putting a T body on a Model A frame with an A banger engine.
    Cheers,
    Stewart. ewewewdsdsdsdsxxx.PNG
     
  11. That's one more issue I avoided by deciding to go with a flathead... I had a reply all typed up before I realized you were still using the Model A engine!

    And that hood would drive me nuts too.
     
  12. 6sally6
    Joined: Feb 16, 2014
    Posts: 682

    6sally6
    Member

    Can't you just shorten the fan? How much "fan" does a 4 banger need WITH open sided hood?
    Jus say'in
    6sally6
     
  13. a boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,117

    a boner
    Member

    How much of the fan blades would have to be cut off to clear the hose?
     
  14. irishsteve
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 355

    irishsteve

    The stock A upper hose runs down to the water pump at a steep angle.Could you make a custom housing that doesnt lean forward,but goes straight up? You could then run the top hose straight back.Make a steel tube 90 degree down turn,and have a lower section of hose that connects it to the new water pump housing you made.Just a thought.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2019
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  15. dwollam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2012
    Posts: 784

    dwollam
    Member

    I raise the body an inch and a half and use a 28-29 radiator. My next one is getting a 26-27 radiator shell that has been lengthened.

    Dave
     
  16. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 9,700

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Sounds good, IrishSteve. Definitely solves the interference problem with a simple re-routing. Also: If a 'shorter 'T' radiator is desired, the ones made for the earlier ('21-'23) T's use a shorter shell, ergo, shorter radiator.

    BTW: It's been 10 years since the old gent passed that used to reproduce steel T shells, for '26-'27 to the 'T' parts vendors. Surprised nobody picked that up...
    Probably 'cuz all the '27 guys are pasting 'A' shells on 'em. (for that 'uphill hood look'!):eek:
     
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  17. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 9,700

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Surprised to read that, @Dave...I did the very same thing on my '27 Hiboy on '32 rails.
    When I changed from Olds to my Chrysler Hemi, it looked out of proportion, as the frame was its 106" wheelbase. Some good fir 2 X 4s got laid atop rails, clamped, and shaped. (old idea, the wood between to close the crack between straight bottom of roadster and sway back of Deuce rails; Jim Jacobs did that on the R&C Highboy)
    Some whittling on the lower fronts and rears made nice wood 'spacers'. When it's all painted midnite blue no one will be any the wiser.
    Profile of the car improved lots, also have a 4" rolled pan on rear. Just right.
    "Tall Hiboy"...
     
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  18. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 811

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    My SBC sits low in the frame. The engine is mounted such that the fan only clears the lower radiator outlet and hose by 1/4". It wouldn't have hurt anything for the fan to be at least three inches higher in my setup (radiator to fan wise) before it hit the upper rad hose. My fan center is 8-3/4" above the crossmember. With this setup it looks like you could be as high as 11-3/4" above the crossmember and it would work. How high from the cross member to the center of the fan is your Model A? Diameter of fan?
     
  19. dwollam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2012
    Posts: 784

    dwollam
    Member

    Mike I did one with wedge shaped 2x material. Roadster pickup. Had enough rubber rake for that to work. Tapered thinner going to the rear.

    Dave
     
  20. dwollam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2012
    Posts: 784

    dwollam
    Member

    T radiator just does not fit the crossmember on an A frame.

    Dave
     
  21. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 811

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    I wish he was still around. I'd have one nickel plated. I looked forever for a really good tall 26-27 shell. They are even kind of rare on fleabay. I am still looking for a pristine original nickel plated shell. I painted the one on my car after a lot of hammer and dolly work and soldering, then bondo,(it was rough) but a nickel shell would look great.
     
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  22. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 9,700

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    EGG-zactly! I found a pretty good one, and did some pick-and-file work on it.
    I am still planning on a nickle plated 'T' shell, nothing looks classier.
    My Grandpa had a '21 Center Door T, he and Mr. Pierson next door both had T's, were always working on them. Accessories and such.
    Years after they both passed, guess around '56, my aunt bought the Pierson house next door. I was recruited to clean out the cellar, and hit my head on a Nickle '26 T shell, slid between the floor joists!
    "Of course you can have that, Michael. Anything else you want, just take..."
    Wish I had it now... LOL
     
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  23. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 811

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    Dammit!
     

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