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Projects At 69 my first A coupe project!

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by vtwhead, Jan 6, 2015.

  1. Your never too old to have a happy childhood! HRP
    30tudor and Oldbill51 like this.
  2. fastmike
    Joined: Aug 6, 2013
    Posts: 270

    from Chicago IL

    Looks really great! Looks like the steering and brakes turned out really well.
  3. oneratfink57
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 588

    from Wisco

    So glad I clicked on this thread. Working on channeling my 37, and forgot that I'll have to drop the grille shell and doghouse too. Now I can start brainstorming a little earlier!

    Thanks flthd31!

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  4. 55zephyr
    Joined: Sep 5, 2013
    Posts: 96


    fantastic build, it's great to see someone enjoying the time in the garage, as much as I do.
    Stay lucky, Ron.
  6. 70 degrees yesterday so I managed to get out into the shop and worked on putting those '49 Ford hinges on the trunk. I had been told that they fit and work well. It did not look like that was the case but I managed to get them on and the fit is so bad I wont take a pic of them. Perhaps it was the 50 hinges?? These are the 49:

    Anyone know if the 50's work?
    So as it goes often we went backwards yesterday, now I have to rework this. HA!
    sloppy jalopies likes this.
  7. 20 degrees today and very windy. Never heat that old garage so I thought I would dig up those pics on that Buick brake conversion.. I had intended to do the full Buick front brake conversion using the Buick hubs and drums. After a lot of research and a lot of time we managed to locate all the pieces required. This requires 1958 Buick hubs, backing plates and the 45 fin drums for starters. Everything up here in the NE has long been crushed making this a bit of a challenge. This is the backing plate that is required:

    and what it looks like from the rear:

    Bolt pattern is too large so weld the holes up and redrill for the ford spindle. I used round back units.

    A machined hub adapter is required. I got lucky and found these with another member along with the backing plates and hubs.
  8. And in the backing plate looks like this:

    Now for the trial fit of the spindle:

    Break out the grinder and trim the top of the spindle to make it fit tight like this:

    Spindle adapters are required. These came from another member that I believe had purchased them from sanfordandson who is a member on here. This is the inside piece:
  9. the spec on this is :


    Seemed to have lost the pic on the outside adapter. It is a thin tube that slips over the spindle.
    this is how the above unit looks on the spindle:

    And now the Buick hubs. Have to careful here as hubs can be different. You need the 58 hubs. I had picked up the wrong ones and they were just a tad bit larger and would not allow the drum to fit correctly with regard to the backing plate. Here are the two units:
    The hub on the left is what you want. The neck needs to be turned down to be similar to the one on the right like
    like this:

    this allows the drum to fit flush with the neck.
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
  10. For further reference on the correct hub this is the dimensions of the 58 hub.
    100_5592 (2).JPG
  11. Here is the machined hub with its new bearings, Timken Set 3 and Set 5

    Mounted on the spindle;

    Yep, that is one of those new fangled cotter pins! Don't know about those yet..........let you know how they work out

    And here is the finished product:


    This will give me a full 2 1/2 inch shoe ( I have new old stock shoes) which I remember used to stop my friends 58 Buick Century quite well so that ought to stop this coupe on a dime I hope. And it gives me the satisfaction of doing yet another thing that those "old guys" used to do back in the day! I am staying with the 5 on 5 bolt pattern and am trying to source some early Pontiac circa 49-50 rims at the moment. found a 50 Pontiac in an old FL yard when we were down there in Jan but someone had beat me to the punch so still looking............................
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2017
    54reno likes this.
  12. oneratfink57
    Joined: Feb 12, 2006
    Posts: 588

    from Wisco

    Yes I do! Search: not your average 37 Chevy build

    It's in the traditional customs section
  13. that is a project. I built a 37 coupe for a friend of mine several years ago. Took me 2 years to finish it. Yours is surely more demanding. Keep at it. You are doing a great job!
    oneratfink57 likes this.
  14. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 2,917

    sloppy jalopies

    hinges 1 009.JPG Are those hinges for a model A coupe ? ... the A's tulip panel's deck is kinda short...
    I like the '37 ford flatback hinges... the upper half is short, looks like a leftover '35 -'36 top half hinge...
    the '35 -'36 hinges will also work.[front screw on the lower half drops through the inner structure at its vertical area..].
    The deck hinges that are from a later car are made to have their hinge pins in line... because the body/trunk had more radius than the A the hinges bases are tilted [need to grind the base from the outside edge towards the inner edge for them to work on an A..]...
    Also bought these unknown manufacture hinges for $20, they are hollow and require much less grinding than the solid '37s... the upper half is a little longer and needs the underside to be ground to match the tulip deck's slight upward curve...

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 27, 2017
  15. Aren't the ones in the large pic above for the 37 humback sedan? And if so have you used these for the coupe trunk hinges?
  16. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 2,917

    sloppy jalopies

    tan coop 4 sale 1 007.JPG tan coop 4 sale 1 009.JPG
    ... No sir, 1937 ford flatback...
    Have used them 3 times... The hump back hinges are curved... Bob Drake repops the flatbacks...
    that was a bumper guard mounted 1950 olds plate light now as 3rd brake...
    Dino 64 likes this.
  17. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 2,917

    sloppy jalopies

    The gap in the hinge halves is located forward of the deck gap... this is to leave room for the upper half's studs to clear the trunk gutter... i used 5/16" NFT carb studs, flat washers and 1.5" long peices of conduit with a strap welding them together to make them easier to install...the conduit fits the outside of the upper's threaded bosses [don't make the holes in the tulip any bigger than needed]... no room for a nut or a wrench, by dropping it 1.5" the nuts are below the gutter and are easy to tighten... took some but, couldn't find any pix of the installation tubes...
    Dino 64 likes this.
  18. Dino 64
    Joined: Jul 13, 2012
    Posts: 1,616

    Dino 64
    from Virginia

    Want to do the same on my coupe. So 37 Ford flat backs are the ones that worked the best and Drake has them ?

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  19. Kiwi 4d
    Joined: Sep 16, 2006
    Posts: 2,437

    Kiwi 4d

    It's frustrating when people give you uninformed advice. Re the 49 hinges ,there is no way they would fit as they are too sided to left and right as you unfortunately found out, I think 50 hinges are internal. At least sloppy Jalopies has give you the good oil on how to shape a 37 set to work. We have used Morris minor hinges but that was on a 29 roadster and they sat reasonably flat.
  20. Thanks for keeping me straight on this. I had found a pic of the hump back hinges labeled as flat back sedan units on the web so that was the source of my confusion. (I mean that things on the web are always true, right?):D:D:D
    And also thanks fo sharing your technique for installing those hinges. That will help save me some time.
  21. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 2,917

    sloppy jalopies

    email me if you want when you are ready to install them...
  22. 54reno
    Joined: Dec 4, 2009
    Posts: 108


    Great job young man!
  23. fourspd2quad
    Joined: Jul 6, 2006
    Posts: 565


    Hi Walt, I love your work and that dash is really cool. I can't wait to see my cowl blister on your finished car.
  24. Geez! can't believe I have not done updates on this build since March! Where does the time go??
    Hanging around waiting for the big Thanksgiving dinner so I will start at some of the updates.....
    Finally got the correct hinges for the trunk lid and with a little help from Smitty up in neighboring ME made up some hardware to bolt them down.

    Moving on I fabbed up some 1x1 for a frame to support the new Tanks 20 gal gas tank. had to shorten up the filler neck by an inch so that it would clear the deck lid and then installed the bulk head fittings for the gas line, the return line and soon the vent pipe.
    At this point I turned my attention to finishing the floors and figuring out the deck lid latch. I had an old 37 latch that has the V8 on it so I massaged that a bit and installed that in the deck lid. Then fought with the rear panel to get everything to align and allow the deck latch to work correctly. Didn't have a clue how the original set up handled rain water so I massaged everything to allow the water to run behind and out to the ground.??? Looks like it will work ok.

  25. Been playing around with the tail pan and mounted up the plate hangar, then installed two Pontiac taillights. Doesn't do much for me but I keep looking at it in the hopes that it grows on is not working. think I will build two recess buckets for the tails and the plate. Maybe then they will look like they were not just thrown on there!??????
    I cut the frame extensions off and made up a spreader bar that will eventually have a push bar attached to it.
    Got all the patch panels in and started to skim coat those.
    100_6231.JPG 100_6232.JPG
    Pulled the doors off and blasted them on both sides, then added the lower patches. Set them aside for the time being as I was beginning to run out of time this fall and I still wanted to look at a chop before heading south. After taping off the roof and messing with different chops I settled on 3 3/4. Got the 4 1/2 inch cutoff out and had at it. So here is the "required pic" of the roof off:
    And back on:
    While I had the top off I blasted both sides and fixed some pin holes. Much easier off than when back on for sure.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2017
    Thor1, spurgeonforge and Runnin shine like this.
  26. had to push it outside for a good look at it. I am pleased with how it turned out.
    Lowered the doors and put them back on. Made some adjustments for the fit. Had to shim the front of the cowl a bit on the passenger side to get the right door to act right but no big deal.

    And yes, there are only two hinges. My mentor who has been building these hot rods for 50 years talked me into doing the two hinges. Admit it was probably a bit easier for a novice like me and I can say that I do not miss the top hinge at all.
    So now I have to figure out what I am going to do with the roof which will fall into the spring as we are heading south for a couple of months. Torn between wood or steel. Got to figure that out and tie out the top before I lift it off to work on the frame.
    Look for more updates in early 18.
  27. gnichols
    Joined: Mar 6, 2008
    Posts: 10,428

    from Tampa, FL

    Nice to see the updates. My A is still on OEM rails and I'm 69 this year. I got to catch up to you! Gary
    spurgeonforge and OFT like this.
  28. Looking great! Can't wait to see more progress...
  29. Winter is almost over! Back in the garage now but still need the heat.....snow predicted for tomorrow again:rolleyes::rolleyes:
    Over the winter I have been rounding up wood pieces for the roof and yesterday I had my opportunity to see how all those pieces fit into an A coupe! Lots of measuring and fitting, cutting, fitting etc but in the end I am fairly happy with the initial install. Now I am going to take it all apart and poly all the wood and set it aside. Here is the end result so far

    Picked up bulk head fittings for the gas tank and have them in place
    Then decided to make a partition for the back of the seat to separate the trunk from the forward compartment
    I will glue Kool Mat to this as well as the floor to hold the heat and some noise back. I figure I will attach the panel to the X frame with sheet metal screws so it can be removed easily. Might seam seal the edges. Was going to put some bead rolls in it but it is pretty sound when attached to the X so I changed my mind on that.
    Today I bought some of that Loctite rust inhibitor and brushed it on all the interior panels that were rusted. Two coats twenty minutes apart and then it turns black when dried. I will top coat it with a rattle can product in a couple days. Never used it before, always used Por15 but this is easier and less money.....we will see how it works out.
    I know it looks blue but it will turn black as it cures.

    More to come, stay tuned!
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2018
    Aaron D., 2345.coupe and OFT like this.

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