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Projects Building My First Roadster in San Francisco

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by J.Ukrop, Sep 7, 2020.

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  1. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    J.Ukrop
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    Thanks, Timm! I appreciate it. Back in the day, I hosted my fair share of Facebook Live/Instagram Live feeds for The Rodder's Journal. It was really fun and gave me the opportunity to do a different kind of journalism.
     
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  2. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    So what's this video Timm's referencing? Well, my friends, that would be the full-length feature about our Oregon adventure.



    I know they say a picture is worth 1,000 words, but I'm not sure how many words a video counts as. I'll tell you this—Yama nailed it. This video captures so many of the highs, lows and laughs from our time on the road.

    I don't want to spoil anything, but the car's back in San Francisco safe and sound. It did so friggin' well at the races, on the back roads, on the city streets and even in tow. It's come a long, long way since last summer. And you know what? I'm proud of that little car.

    Now that I'm home again, I can't help but feel nostalgic about it all. Earlier this week, I jotted down my thoughts about the past year, and I figured I would share them here.
    88A295CA-F950-422C-B0D3-174476A15A52.jpg
    Last weekend’s Harvest Drags marked the end of a big summer. I’ve spent the better part of the past four months on the road, shooting events, writing stories, hanging out with friends, and soaking up everything this year has to offer. From Born Free to the Street Rod Nationals, RPM to TROG, I’ve gotten to catch up with so many people I don’t get to see often enough.

    This summer, I got to walk the same streets as my grandfather when he moved to this country from Czechoslovakia in the 1920s. I rode old motorcycles on winding Midwestern roads one month and down the California coast the next. I slept on floors, lost in pool, closed down bars, shot film, sent postcards and learned to appreciate olives.

    And, through it all, I’ve been working on this car. Sometimes it was in the foreground and other times it was shuffled somewhere in the back of my mind. Racing it out in that field—with chunks of mud and pumpkin flying off all four wheels—is something I’ll never forget. Taking it for an extra 150-mile, weekend-long reliability run to (and through) the tree-lined streets of Portland was the perfect way to wind it all down.

    What a season. Special thanks to Yama for coming along for the ride, and thank you to everyone who hosted me this year. You’re all the best. Seriously.
     
  3. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Now, for a selection of photos from here and there. Have I mentioned that I love the Pacific Northwest?
    4M5A3390.jpg
    My inner Michigander loves the fall colors.
    4M5A3426.jpg
    Darn hooligans.
    IMG_9348.jpg
    Cruising the streets of Portland with Lindsey and Stella was definitely a highlight. People got a kick out of seeing Stella riding shotgun. She was a natural!
    IMG_9379.jpg
    Shasta in all its glory.
    IMG_9414.jpg
    Look who we found on the way home! IMG_9424.jpg
    It was very special to see these two cars together. If it weren't for David's roadster, I wouldn't be building a 1930 Model A.
    IMG_9526.jpg
    The following day, I even got a free car wash. Driving this thing out on the city streets in a downpour is quite the experience. I'm thinking I have a windshield wiper in my future.

    Believe it or not, we have some updates on both versions of the car. It's getting late, so I'll try to pick up where we left off sooner rather than later.
     
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  4. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
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    :rolleyes:...Holy Scenery and Camerawork Batman!!... darn mountain looks like a volcano...hard to beat the fall colors and a Hotrod...
     
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  5. corncobcoupe
    Joined: May 26, 2001
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    And you came to Iowa......
     
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  6. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 7,267

    Budget36
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    I saw the Vid of the Harvest Drags posted a while back. Looked like a lot of fun.
    Pretty cool, Joey is out making memories to be passed down in the years to come.
     
  7. Loved the Oregon video!
    Your brother is right, chasing the quail is always an adventure.
     
  8. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,717

    RodStRace
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    While driving a roadster in the rain is a special experience, I'd add that having a sealed top, side curtains and a heater to fog things up while keeping toasty driving in the rain is another level!
    A tonneau cover can make it more comfy, while still getting that stinging face sensation.

    BTW, that pic of you out in the field (and the thumbnail for the video) is classic! It makes a perfect setup for a Dave Deal style cartoon with that helmet and your grin!
    https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/the-art-of-dave-deal.654215/
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2021
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  9. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 12,974

    Tim
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    from KCMO

    Fantastic shots! Looking forward to the updates for both versions of the car! Working on a lil something for the A right now, gets me fueled up seeing you chip away and have fun with yours!
     
  10. Six Ball
    Joined: Oct 8, 2007
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    Six Ball
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    from Nevada

    Great video and great event coverage. Looks like a lot of fun.

    "Looks like I have some phone calls to make! I also have a line on a builder 8BA from a friend. If I can find the space, we can make it happen."
    We can always find space though right now I'm looking at where the space used to be.

    "Sorry to hear about your friend. Let me know if you need any help ID'ing any motorcycle stuff. Yama and I want to come over and hang out with you!"
    That would be cool! Another Dayton on your list this one in Nevada. I bet they are named for the same surveyor. It will be a while before the family is ready. I'll get down there and take some pictures. There may be some 3 patch guys that want to insert themselves but that will be over before you get here. :rolleyes:
     
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  11. NoSurf
    Joined: Jul 26, 2002
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    Wow. Bummed I missed this thread until now, but glad I got to spend 2 days reading it from the beginning. Definitely inspiring. It motivated me to do the head swap on my A speedster pickup.

    What size tires are you running? I think I saw 6.00x16 on the front? Back are 7.00x16?

    Thank you for taking the time to share the pics, videos, progress and trips.
     
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  12. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Thanks for coming along for the ride to Oregon, Stogy! Not only does it look like a volcano—it is one! Not many fall colors here in San Francisco, so that made it extra special.

    Doesn't that feel like a million years ago? Such a great time catching up. Won't be long and I'll be back again!

    Thank you! Just like so many other friends on the H.A.M.B., I grew up reading about hot rodders going out, putting their machines to the test and sharing their stories in the next monthly or quarterly issue. I'd like to think we're following in their footsteps, but in fast-paced digital form!

    Thanks for watching! Seeing that I'm pretty much always the one driving, it's fun to see the car in motion from a bunch of different angles. That being said, the one of the hood may be my favorite.

    Hah! You read my mind. One day, the V8-version will have a top, side curtains and...cycle fenders up front and bobbed ones in the rear. I'm slowly gathering the pieces I need to make that a reality.

    I wasn't familiar with Dave Deal, but you're exactly right! He certainly knew how to capture the fun!

    Thank ya! Things have been pretty busy, but glad to hear that you're making moves.

    Maybe we can make it happen once all the snow melts!
     
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  13. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Thank you for coming along for the ride. As you now know, it's been quite the project, but we've had fun on here pretty much every step of the way. Nice work swapping the head!

    As far as the tires go, they're 6.00x16 up front and 7.50x16 out back. IMHO that little extra size on the rear helps give it some rake, even without a dropped axle.
    On the move.jpg
     
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  14. Stovebolt
    Joined: May 2, 2001
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    @J.Ukrop thank-you for such an inspirational video - I too have discovered the pleasure of driving a banger powered Model A.

    They are infectious, and capable of driving long distances .... all be it a bit slower than other traffic on the roads.
     
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  15. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
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    Well I'll be darned...How cool...:confused:...Lets hope it keeps Cool is that!!
     
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  16. Weedburner 40
    Joined: Jan 26, 2006
    Posts: 857

    Weedburner 40
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    Hey Joey,
    I love the vision you have for version 2. I go along with the others, keep that chassis as is and throw a rpu body on it. There just happens to be a nice cab and bed for sale on IG.
     
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  17. I'm curious, with running a 7.50x16 tire, plus the rest of the modifications you've made, what's the top speed on that banger? It's always good to see you return up here to Oregon. The roadster is looking killer!
     
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  18. RodStRace
    Joined: Dec 7, 2007
    Posts: 2,717

    RodStRace
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    Hmm, an RPU on a 32 chassis (ignore the engine)
    [​IMG]
     
  19. choppedrod63
    Joined: Oct 14, 2005
    Posts: 87

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    I am so jealous! Great looking project, keep up the good work. I will be watching.
     
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  20. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Thank you for watching! Sometimes it's nice to take a step back and see the world at a different pace.

    I hear ya there!

    The more I think about it, the more I like that idea.

    Thank you! I'm not sure of the top speed, but Yama broke out the speedometer app on his phone while we were driving. We were in the 54-55mph zone for a good amount of the trip. My guess would be about 60mph, but I can't say for sure.

    That's a good looking machine.

    Thanks for following along. There's a whole lot of fun things in the works.
     
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  21. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Tons of updates brewing on both versions of the car. We have new parts, old parts (a '39 Ford transmission!), fabrication, treasure hunting and hot rod dreaming. I'll be posting details soon. In the meantime, there have been two threads up on the main Jalopy Journal board that pertain to this project.

    1) Ryan's Mazi Moto post here.
    2) My full account of the 2021 Harvest Drags here.
     
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  22. Dedsoto
    Joined: Jan 7, 2014
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    Dedsoto
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    from Australia
    1. Aussie HAMBers

    I'm seeing 75mph+ with 7.50s, header and intake on an otherwise stock banger
     

    Attached Files:

  23. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
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    Boy I'm glad you posted that. I just got some whitewalls I was thinking about mounting that way, but I was waffling, and now I know it looks totally bitchin.
     
  24. hipojoe
    Joined: Jul 23, 2021
    Posts: 231

    hipojoe

    Its hard for me to describe your entire out look , your way of looking at things, your age, your car , the places you go ,and the things you do. Its like a time warp going back 80- 90 years of how life, and cars were back then, and I absolutely love experiencing these pictures and things you do! In a hurry up, hustle and bustle world we live in today, it is good to turn the clock back to a simpler time and get some rain in your face, race some friends just for the HELL of it, doesnt matter who wins... its just for fun. Not worry if someone is going to steal your ride .. They are probably more worried if their tetanus shots are up to date. Any ways this old guy just loves how you are living life and have decided that I am going to follow some of your ways. Keep on keeping on, cant wait for every new experience. Awesome just love it!!!
     
  25. Six Ball
    Joined: Oct 8, 2007
    Posts: 4,275

    Six Ball
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    from Nevada

    Sometimes I am amazed at what people will put on their heads and smile with confidence that they are better for it. :eek:
     
  26. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    Hell yeah. Looks like I may have to do some more road testing and report back with the results. Problem is, there aren't many places in the city to that.

    Agreed, that's a good look. Can't wait to see the new meats on your machine.

    Thank you my friend! Sometimes it's easy to forget that this stuff is all about fun. I'm doing what I can to keep that traditional spirit alive!
     
  27. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    I'm up in Seattle right now and have the day off, so I figured I'd post a partial update.

    Sidebar #32: Into Position

    During my most recent workday at di Falco Fabrications, we had a couple of options of what to attack next. Weld the lower shock mounts to the '32 heavy axle? Mock up the rear crossmember? It didn't take long for us to realize that the best route was to put the firewall in position and start thinking about motor mounts. I didn't have my transmission or rear trans mount, so this would just be a rough outline.

    First, we unloaded my engine.
    IMG_9147.jpg
    Very neat to see it out of the truck an on the dolly.

    Next, we moved to the main area of the shop.
    IMG_9166.jpg
    Clamping the firewall to the frame was a big moment for me. It's the first step towards becoming a car! While mocking it up, we discovered two things. 1) The frame has been pinched, thanks to the So-Cal Model A front crossmember. 2) It very well may have been set up for a Model A at one time, seeing that the rear frame horns were bobbed and there were marks exactly where we put the firewall.

    It was a beautiful fall day in Petaluma, and we took the opportunity to ride our choppers to the local sandwich shop. I was on my Coppertone 1966 Schwinn Stingray.
    IMG_9157.jpg
    David hoisted down his 100% hand-built chopper. His background is in high-end bicycle fabrication; this bike is a work of art that blends old and new parts. Best of all, it was designed to be ridden. I took it for a spin and it's a blast!
    IMG_9158.jpg
    Riding these bikes on the tree-lined streets of Petaluma was like taking a trip back in time. David pointed out historic sites and directed my attention to his favorite buildings. IMG_9164.jpg
    This hatchery dates back to 1898. After lunch in the park, we got right back to work.
     
  28. J.Ukrop
    Joined: Nov 10, 2008
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    With that, we started on the motor mounts. First, we took measurements of the frame width and the lower water pump legs. Then, we broke out the bandsaw and cut pieces of heavy-duty U-channel to shape.
    IMG_9168.jpg
    Using the base of a tin can, we got the shape sorted out. A holesaw was used for the main mounting point.
    IMG_9171.jpg
    We then roughed it out with the bandsaw.
    IMG_9173.jpg
    And then cleaned them up with the belt sander.
    IMG_9177.jpg
    We'll attack the bottom curve next time I'm there. David has built countless pairs of the same mounts, but I appreciate how he took his time and guided me though the finer points.
    IMG_9178.jpg
    Before I left, David gave me an assignment: have a transmission and rear trans mount by next time so we could mock up the driveline. It was a tall order, but I knew I could make it happen.
     
  29. So with the 32 frame being two and a half inches longer what's your approach on the rear kick up matching the wheel wells on the 31 body? If you move the body rearward the front looks too long and if keep the body front the rear is hard to align with the wheel wells.
     
  30. A Boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 6,221

    A Boner
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    Align the REAR axle/wheels, wheel wells, and frame arch.
     
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