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Projects BChrismer's Beater '40 Ford Panel Project

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by bchrismer, Dec 28, 2019.

  1. Kan Kustom
    Joined: Jul 20, 2009
    Posts: 2,619

    Kan Kustom

    I'm just getting started on my panel. All I can see is your taillights! o_O :D
  2. Got 4 packages in the mail yesterday. A beater '41 tail lamp housing from my buddy Lee in one, LED tail lamps in the next, a box of goodies from C&G Ford parts with headlamp bucket stuff, and a package with some LM7806 voltage regulators. The parts that I was REALLY wanting to get were the headlamp adjusting hardware and all the big guys seem to be sold out with no ETA for availability. I believe I did find a set at Old Dog's, up in St Louis. We'll know if they send me package this week. LOL

    I should be able have all the lighting and sending units wired up this weekend. I'll have to wait for the heat sinks to finish making my voltage regulators. Just a little more and the panel will be heading to the muffler shop!
  3. 20200525_132805.jpg
    The crusty gauges that I pulled out of the truck.

    A little cleanup started. I've decided that until I can catch up with Charlie to get the replacement speedometer, I am going to swap the '40 Deluxe speedometer into this cluster for now. Will finish cleaning it up this week and pre-wire the power with the 6v regulators on the fuel, oil pressure, and temp gauges.
    One of the things that I got sidetracked with last week was throwing one of the old wheels from my '40 stake truck on the side to fill up the spare tire indentation. I'm not much for whitewalls, but in this case I think it works. LOL

    I had some difficulty getting the flashers and turn signals to work. The LED flasher I had installed didn't seem to be working right. Then I remembered it had an adjustment screw on the back. BINGO! They now work.

    Putting it away for the day.

    Next week we're gonna put it back up on the lift so I can wire the fuel sending unit, run a speedometer cable, and Mike can finish welding the spring saddles to the rear end. Figure it needs more than just the little bit that he welded when we were mocking it up.

    We'll also stick some bolts in the rear seat mounts, too. Never got around to doing that yet. Mike says he wants to bang on the rear lower panel and a couple spots on the rear fenders, too.

    I've got the wires pulled for the high and low beams, and the turn signal and parking lamp for the passenger side. I need to pick up another spool of red wire to finish the wiring to the driver's side for the turn signal and parking lamp. Since one of my crusty headlamp rings already has a United Pacific LED turn signal/parking lamp, I'm going to order another "all amber" one for the other side to match.

    Another day closer to hauling it to the muffler shop to finish up the exhaust!
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2020
  4. Hey @Kan Kustom, I don't think I got to edit with some narrative before you saw the post.
    chryslerfan55 and loudbang like this.
  5. Kan Kustom
    Joined: Jul 20, 2009
    Posts: 2,619

    Kan Kustom

    Looking good. The flashers work great. Man I wish my rear doors and hinges were in that good of condition. I think I could rebuild my truck in the same time the doors are going to take.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2020
    chryslerfan55 and loudbang like this.
  6. 20200610_111356.jpg
    Tuesday night, I had sandblasted the housing and the gauge face plate. Wednesday, they got painted with some almond Rustoleum appliance paint
    I also made some LM7806 6v regulators for the gauges
    Put everything back together
    Pre-wired what I could to get it ready to install.
    I ordered 10 LED 57 bulbs, as the incandescent bulbs in my gauges don't really provide much light, even though they are the brighter version. Here's the results when I swapped them in the gauge cluster of my '40 stake truck. Since the panel's gauges have more rust stain on them, the LEDs should help with the visibility in those too.
  7. Wow, those Leds make a big difference! Nice work
    chryslerfan55 and loudbang like this.
  8. No photos for today's update.

    Got out to Mike's and he had the panel up on the lift. While we had easy access to the stuff underneath, I ran wires for the fuel tank sender and the electric fuel pump (a backup for the mechanical, and to help prime the fuel line). I struggled with the speedometer cable, but couldn't get the inner cable seated into the gear, so no joy with that. Now that the speedometer is in, we can put it back on the lift, then connect it at the speedometer end, and try to stab it again. Should help keep the inner cable from retracting when trying to get it into the end of the driven gear.

    Once we set it back down on the ground, I removed the Deluxe gauges, swapped the deluxe speedometer into the Standard panel, installed it and ran the oil pressure and temperature sender wires back to the panel. I then ran power from the headlamp switch to the lights, and from the board to the gauges. When I turned the key to test the gauges, I found that I had no power. FUN!

    I figured I had a bad ground, so I started testing stuff. Then I got the idea to swap the power leads and power the gauges from the light switch to see if they responded. Pulled the light switch and the gauges responded. That's when I remembered that when I was wiring the engine, I didn't run the wire from the "accessory" position on the switch over to the wiring panel. A few minutes later, I ran a temporary wire from the ignition switch over to the accessory input on the board and the gauges worked when the ignition was on or in the accessory position.

    After lunch, I started working on the headlight buckets. One of them is missing the adjuster spring bracket on the side of the bucket and the hardware inside is too rusty to remove without damaging the rest of it. Looks like I am on the hunt for a usable '40 headlight bucket. I'll likely just order a new one and a few of the other small parts that I missed on my last order and be done with them.
  9. Oh...I totally forgot to mention, after I decided to call it a day on the headlight wiring, I told Mike I was gonna drive it down the road and back to let the alternator charge the battery some. I told him he needed to ride shotgun, since I didn't have the speedometer connected, and I handed him my phone with DigiHUD pulled up.

    We ran it down the road and I finally shifted into 4th. We were running about 60, heading up a long hill, and it did pretty good. On the way back, I ran it up to about 65 and it seemed to have plenty of get up and boogie left in it. Mike made the comment that it rode pretty nice and seemed pretty stable, so that was good, too.
  10. Here's the link for the LED bulbs. I figured for $11, it was worth trying. While it is quite a bit brighter and very white light, they sure did change the night time visibility.
  11. Grandadeo
    Joined: Dec 24, 2008
    Posts: 793


  12. TrailerQueen.jpg
    Yesterday, Mike loaded up the panel onto his trailer and sent me this picture with the caption, "Trailer Queen". My plans were to try and get the panel into the muffler shop this week, but when I ran into Mark (the muffler man) at the Walmarts, he told me that it would be sometime next week before he could get to it. With the picture coming from Meeker, I had to do some garage shuffling, so I called my father-in-law and told him I needed to borrow his pickup for a few days and would he mind if I stuck my coupe in his garage while I had his truck.

    Mike showed up about 35 minutes later and we unloaded the panel and I drove it into the newly opened garage space. Then we made a run and I helped Mike load up the back half of a 36 sedan and a cowl section for a 36, as well as a couple of doors.

    This afternoon, after work, I cut up some pieces of those puzzle "anti-fatigue" mats from Harbor freight to fit around the transmission tunnel. Figure that should work for some insulation and noise deadening, and was CHEAP. I also took the speedometer cable loose from the transmission, connected it at the speedometer, and then reconnected it. Man, does that ever suck trying to contort your hands to fit through the holes in the X member and try to connect the thing back up when you are lying on your back and have a shifter and linkage in the way. LOL

    Of course, now that it has a speedometer cable that should work, it required some testing. I live in a fairly nice neighborhood and have some rather uptight neighbors, so I can imagine some may have been offended by my roaring up the street with open exhaust that end just before the middle brace in the X member. Made a couple stops. The first one is an old guy in the neighborhood who loves old cars and used to buy and sell on a rather large scale (car museum inventory kind of stuff). While he likes nice stuff, he was really digging the old beater panel. Then I ran down the main drag of the neighborhood, a divided 4 lane road, and turned into the other end of the neighborhood where the now retired pastor of a church that I occasionally attended while I was in college lives. He's got an old Dodge pickup that needs rewiring, and I told him that I would gladly come over and help him a night or two each week for until we can get that project knocked out.

    Unfortunately, no photos in the neighborhood yet. Figure I might do that AFTER I have mufflers and tail pipes added to the old beast.

    Oh...the other news...I think that I had mentioned that the truck never had a serial number stamped on the frame. I reached out to the attorney that helped me get the title settled for the '40 stake truck and wrote him a check right about the time the whole 'rona thing hit. Since the courts have been closed and they were not accepting any filings, it got back burnered. Monday, I received the petition for the courts that I needed to sign and have notarized, and sent it back. I gave them several serial numbers to run to see if we could find one that didn't have any title records on. Apparently my first choice cleared the title search, as it was what is on the petition. Now hoping that the courts aren't backlogged too badly and that this thing will sail through without issues.
  13. Since the panel truck is at the house, between honey do's, I've been getting some stuff done. Finished the headlamps and turn signals and installed the hood ornament and got the latch working. Celebrated by taking a ride around the neighborhood and shooting pictures.

    20200620_163044.jpg 20200620_164623.jpg 20200620_164839.jpg 20200620_164847.jpg 20200620_164906.jpg 20200620_164917.jpg 20200620_165157.jpg 20200620_165216.jpg
  14. It's getting there! Great looking truck!
    loudbang likes this.
  15. When I had the flatty in the stake truck, if I let it sit over a week or so, the carb would get nasty and wouldn't want to run right. I never cleaned it up before putting it in the panel truck, and I think it needs some cleaning. Being the lazy guy that I am, I opted for driving it to the gas station, then going over to O'Reilly for a can of Seafoam, and dumped that in the tank. Usually worked before, should do the trick again.

    Unfortunately, I discovered a death wobble today. We set the toe for 1/8". I had decided that maybe I would try just a little more, but when I took it for a ride, the wobble hit sooner and harder. By the time I got back to the house, my missus was calling me in for supper. Perhaps tomorrow I will go back out and take it back to about 1/16" to 0 and see what happens. Also...because I couldn't find them, and I keep forgetting to buy new ones, I don't have the right size bolts in the upper front shock mounts. I'll remedy that situation tomorrow, too. Hopefully between the two, adjustments, I'll get the wobbles ironed out.
  16. Lotsa great tips in here.
    loudbang and bchrismer like this.
  17. Glad to see the progress pics Bret! And, I am envious that you are making such good progress while I am not making any on two projects with actual deadlines (one that I have now missed)...

    Oh, and funny to hear that Mike only took about 35 minutes to get the panel over to you knowing that I was likely slowing you down on the phone while you were supposed to be clearing out the garage to make space for it... :D
    chryslerfan55, loudbang and bchrismer like this.
  18. 20200623_105006.jpg

    I'm sure my neighborhood probably hates me by now, but, I did go down this morning and reset the toe-in. I had actually put MORE in it last night, thinking I was toed out, which caused the wobble to hit harder and sooner. This morning, I adjusted it out to about 1/16", to the best of my measuring abilities. I found a couple of bolts for the upper front shock mounts, too. I took it on a test run and it seemed to be good, other than my dirty carburetor needing cleaned and readjusted.

    After I got back to the house, I went ahead and threw on the front bumper. I also got a call from @Jermo telling me that he was driving to Springfield today and was bringing me a couple headlight buckets to see if I can get something that will work better than what I have. It'll be interesting to hear what he thinks about the old beater when he has actually seen it in person. LOL
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2020
  19. Nostrebor
    Joined: Jun 25, 2014
    Posts: 1,053


    That's a well loved bumper.

    The panel has the look... killer job!
    guthriesmith, bchrismer and loudbang like this.
  20. Looking good Bret! Wish I was half as productive as you.

    I really love that Harbor Freight floor matting for insulation. I used it in the Chevy at the suggestion of Aaron Lawrence before he put new carpet in. I’ve been really happy with how well it’s worked and will be my go to insulation from now on.
  21. Hey DrDave. I thought I was just being thrifty with my Harbor Freight floor mat. If Fast AL says to use it, and you are happy with it, I guess it was a happy accident that I came up with the idea on my own. Did you stick it to the floor with double sided tape or did you use some spray adhesive?
    chryslerfan55, drdave and loudbang like this.
  22. Thanks.

    To get it from here
    to here
    has been quite a blast, and was only possible to make all that happen quickly because of Meeker. I know that it won't quite appeal to the masses who would prefer a "finished" hot rod, but I'm amazed by all of you guys cheering me on. When I had driven it up to the gas station on Monday, I had a lady ask permission to take some pictures of it.

    I got a call from the lawyer's office, yesterday, telling me they are now required to have the birth date of the petitioner on the file that they submit, so it appears that we have had another week's delay in the titling process. I also talked to the muffler shop, and Mark can't get me in until Monday. With that delay, I probably need to get over to my in-law's house and bring the coupe home and kick my wife's car out of the garage for a little while. (she actually volunteered that yesterday)
  23. 104857108_10221016739235915_5352767222769312918_n.jpg 106343603_10221016739635925_3550451588284133165_n.jpg
    Over the lunch hour, and a little longer, I decided to make a run up to Dollar Tree for some Comet and some Scotch Bright pads. Spent about 30 minutes talking to my neighbor across the street about an off topic 3rd year Chevy sporty car that he is looking at buying with a destroked 327, 30/30 cam, etc, then I commenced to scrubbing.

    Only took enough time to scrub the driver's side and back doors, but I wanted to see what was under the oxidation and black mildew on the body. Ok...I'll be honest. My shoulders can only take so much circular motion scrubbing before I am hurting and need to take a break.

    I still need to get the top and the passenger side, but am pleased with how it scrubbed up.
  24. 20200624_210056.jpg

    Excuse my filthy garage, but...

    Last week, when Mike brought the panel truck to my house, I stuffed the '40 coupe into my in-law's garage and took my father-in-law's pickup home. Both is inner door latches were broken and I fixed those for him so my wife could give him back his truck all cleaned up and with working handles for Father's Day.

    Last night, I went over to pick up the coupe and she gave up her indoor parking until I can figure out my long term arrangements.
  25. Nostrebor
    Joined: Jun 25, 2014
    Posts: 1,053


    Looks like you have the long-term arrangements all lined up! o_O

    Sidebar: I really need your hand painted baby buggies sign. I'll wait by my mailbox...
  26. Funny story about that sign. I was driving down Campbell, out near where Incredible Pizza is, and saw it lying in the middle of the street. I whipped into the parking lot, ran out in the middle of Campbell and took it home and put it on my wall.
  27. Nostrebor
    Joined: Jun 25, 2014
    Posts: 1,053


    I love hand painted signs, and that is the very best way to acquire them!
    guthriesmith likes this.
  28. Nothing real exciting to report on for the weekend projects, other than I finally took the time to swap out the distributor cap and plug wires. The old wires that were on the panel were ones I had on my '40 coupe when I first got it on the road back in 1995. They were way too long, didn't have 90 degree connectors on the '42 crab cap, and they were YELLOW!

    I had bought a set of the Autozone Duralast 1601 plug sets, which used to be about $16 a set, and are now about $25, but I never had wanted to waste time at Mike's doing something I could do at home. The cap that was on the distributor had the edge chipped off of it from where the clip holds it down, and it was prone to popping loose and destroying a rotor. When the flatty was in the stake truck, I broke a couple and was too lazy to swap the cap.

    Since the plug set didn't have 90 degree terminals in it for a push in style cap, I made a trip over to my neighborhood O'Reilly and had one of the guys order me a box of terminals. Figure that allows for a couple of mistakes and adds to my inventory for down the road. I went ahead and bought a set of plug wire crimpers while I was there.

    After getting everything finished up, I took it for a ride. Went back to O'Reilly to show one of the old guys that works there the truck. He was digging it. A white pickup pulled up next to me, and the driver's wife rolled down her window and started asking me questions about it. I recognized her husband as the dad of my "tire guy" from seeing him in the store, so I answered his wife's question and added that their son sold and mount and balanced the tires for me. They both got a pretty big laugh because of that response. I let them know that he also did my coupe and the stake truck, and that's when her husband recognized me, or at least my other '40s.
  29. Had some morning chores to get done today, but afterwards I told the missus I was gonna work on the front end wobble issue. I couldn't find anything "wrong" under the front end. Figured it must be the difference due to the Speedway "Deluxe" kingpin setup that I put in the panel. I mean, heck, this thing steers MUCH nicer than the stake truck or the coupe, and perhaps the little bit of play in the steering may be more of the issue than at first imagined.

    I backed off the nut on the steering box and turned the adjusting screw in until it stopped, then backed it off enough to get the star washer to go back on. Took it for a drive and the issue is 98% gone. I figure it is good enough to get the panel down to the muffler shop tomorrow without having my butt puckered trying to hold on through an episode of death wobble.

    Since I had the hood up, I went ahead and put the rubber hood bumpers all the way around.

    Later this afternoon, I will unload all the unnecessary crap, spare parts, etc, from the back of the panel, throw in a floor jack and some jackstands, and have it ready to roll for my morning adventure.
  30. 20200629_102903.jpg
    So, today was a big day. Drove the panel truck on it's longest drive, so far, making the 17 mile round trip to the muffler shop and back.
    I already had the sections from the exhaust manifolds back to the X-member, as I had used them previously in the stake truck. I had Mark order these shorty glasspacks like I currently have on the stake truck. 1 3/4" diameter pipe from the manifolds to the tail pipes.

    I had Mark run the pipes through the X-member, up and over the rear end, and shoot them out the back below the bumper.

    The ride home was considerably quieter.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2020
    R A Wrench, brEad, 47ragtop and 13 others like this.

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