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Projects Clark Coupe Build

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by etboy97, Dec 21, 2016.

  1. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    After eight long years of collecting parts and not having time to start this project I finally have found myself semi-retired for the moment so am taking advantage of the time to get my 30 coupe project started. My then 12 year old son (now 19) made the trip with me from So Cal to central California to pick up the 30 coupe body and associated parts. After we had loaded it up on the trailer and were heading out my son looked at me and said we should name it Clark. The name has stuck all of these years so it will always be Clark to our family. IMG_3206.JPG

    I sold a 40 Ford pickup this fall I had and made room in the garage getting rid of left over house project junk that seems to collect and started getting some of the parts out of storage. I was left with a plenty of space to start working. Then before I started a I ended up bringing home a 66 Mustang that a friend was selling and squeezed it into the garage. My wife is convinced I like to keep a certain level of chaos in my life. IMG_3615.JPG

    The basic plan is, 1930 Ford Coupe body, repo 32 frame built by Gary Maxwell, 56 Olds 324 and T-5 trans, early Bronco 9" rear, ladder bars, later 40's split wishbone, model a front axle, and 53-56 F100 front brakes. The body is not to bad. Needs the typical repairs along the bottom. This is my first major build so I hope to put to use all that I have learned on the HAMB over the years.

    Not sure how slow the progress will be but I will try and post updates as time allows. IMG_3613.JPG
    I have gotten most of the front axle assembly together. IMG_3626.JPG
    The 53/56 F100 backing plates I had picked up were purple and drilled. It is funny how some parts have already lived several lives. IMG_3634.JPG
    While I waiting for some front end parts I started on the rear end. I got the brackets cut off and ground smooth and decided to sand blast it in my cabinet which is not long enough. I had it setting on a pair of jack stands inside the cabinet as was able to spin it around. It worked out well. IMG_3635.JPG

    That is all for now.

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a machine shop in So Cal that is experienced with a 56 Olds motor?
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2016
    pila38, Stock Racer, Flip8 and 15 others like this.
  2. that looks like a great start , `30 coupe bodies on `32 frames are hot
  3. Looks good!
    Be sure to clean any sand out of the housing- it'll do nasty things to the gears. :eek:
  4. AHotRod
    Joined: Jul 27, 2001
    Posts: 11,159


    Model A Coupes will RULE the world !
    phelan9251, e z i, kiwijeff and 3 others like this.

  5. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 25,780

    Jalopy Joker

    Cool project - so, does "Clark" have a last name? like maybe "Kent"?
    Stogy and loudbang like this.
  6. ClarkH
    Joined: Jul 21, 2010
    Posts: 995


    Excellent name.
    Spooky, kiwijeff, Stogy and 1 other person like this.
  7. sodas38
    Joined: Sep 17, 2004
    Posts: 2,300


    Great project. I've been collecting parts for a roadster project for a long time. It will be nice to start on it too some day. In the mean time I'll watch yours move along.
    Taboo Tiki likes this.
  8. Great start! Definitely need to wash that rear end with a good grease killer like Palmolive dish soap or something. The grit is hiding in all those spots you can't see. The hotter the water the better.
    Is the frame pinched or what is your plan for the cowl fitting the frame.
    loudbang and Just Gary like this.
  9. brady1929
    Joined: Sep 30, 2006
    Posts: 8,496


  10. banginona40
    Joined: Mar 5, 2007
    Posts: 758


    I'll be watching too.
  11. BlownMerc
    Joined: Mar 23, 2010
    Posts: 146

    from Jerome

    I will follow along as well! Sounds like you and I are on the same path.
  12. nochop
    Joined: Nov 13, 2005
    Posts: 1,930

    from norcal

    I'll be watching. I want to out fit mine with a Rocket as well
  13. On the edge of So Cal but really knows old stuff:
    Tim McMaster at Hanford Auto Parts and Machine
    He is a HAMBer Mctim

    Does anyone have a recommendation for a machine shop in So Cal that is experienced with a 56 Olds motor?[/QUOTE]
    loudbang likes this.
  14. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    The frame is pinched. I will also be doing a mini channel at the cowl.
  15. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    Finally have some progress so time for an update. I got the F-100 backing plates and hubs cleaned up and found that one of the hubs had a spun bearing race so had to source a replacement hub. I make the modifications to the spindle backs and rear bearing to allow the 53-56 F100 parts to work. There are HAMB posts and on-line articles on how to do this install and what bearing parts to order. IMG_3678.JPG

    I had one screw up that I had to fix. I original was going to run the lower shock mounts that bolt to the bottom of the spring perch however I found that my split bones are one of the thicker years so the long spring perches are still not long enough. No problem I have other options for the shocks. I then installed a pair of tapered perch lock nuts to work with the taper in the bottom of the bones. I then realized that I needed about a 0.050" washer/shim between the axle and the bones. I went to screw off the tapered perch nuts and after getting about half way off they got bound up and I ended up stripping the spring perch threads. It looks like the nylon lock shavings may have been the culprit. Any way I ordered new P&J spring perches and tapered washers they have so I could use there furnished nuts.

    I then proceeded to work on mocking up the motor. My 56 Olds 324 still had the trans attached so got that off (about 40 bolts counting the bell housing bolts) then bolted on the trans adaptor and a T-5. The engine crank is not drilled out for the trans spindle yet so had to use some washers to space the trans back 3/8". This T-5 is just for mock up. I have a world class V8 Camaro T-5 that I will be using with a transplanted tail housing. I think the motor will be able to move forward a little. I will see how it works out with the firewall. I also built some bolt on wheel stands as I didn't want to spend the big bucks on tires then have them sit around for a few years. The stands are built to keep the car at ride height.
    IMG_3716.JPG IMG_3720.JPG
    Vic Walter, camcrusher, Stogy and 9 others like this.
  16. figure8
    Joined: Oct 4, 2006
    Posts: 74


    like those stands.
  17. ricofan68
    Joined: Aug 30, 2007
    Posts: 232

    from Austin, TX

  18. Coming along well, can't go wrong with a Model A, great choice on the engine, gonna chop it? Watching!!
  19. akoutlaw
    Joined: May 13, 2010
    Posts: 839


    I also like the idea behind the stands. They could be made adjustable to work with different ride heights on different builds. :)
    Tim_with_a_T likes this.
  20. Joliet Jake
    Joined: Dec 6, 2007
    Posts: 494

    Joliet Jake
    from Jax, FL

    I'm at the point in my build when its time to locate and weld the front bone brackets on the frame. How to you "true" or "square up" the axle to locate the position of the brackets on the frame? Also, when doing so, do you keep the frame on stands with the axle hanging free, or keep weight on it as you have with those pivoting dollies bolted to the hubs sitting on the floor.
  21. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    It will have a 3" to 4" chop.
    kiwijeff and 1927graham like this.
  22. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    I am no expert but I will tell you what I did. If you look at the below photo both the frame and the axle are supported. The frame is set so the center of the front cross member is leaning about 5 to 7 degrees back . IMG_3624.JPG
    I bolted all of the parts together as shown in the photo. Make sure both of the bones/tie rod are set to the same length. I then checked the top of the axle with another angle finder to make sure it was the same. I then tacked my frame tabs in place after measuring back from the cross member to the tab to make sure they were both the same. I just tacked the tabs as I may have to make changes after the full weight is on the frame. I know that some guys depending on the bones they use and the spring/frame combination end up pie cutting the bones behind the head to get the tie rod end up were they want it. I did not have to do that as my bones worked out okay.
    Vic Walter, Stogy, brEad and 2 others like this.
  23. Kato Kings
    Joined: Aug 22, 2006
    Posts: 682

    Kato Kings
    from Minnesota

    I am building a 30 coupe with a 55 324 as well. Good luck.
  24. duncan
    Joined: Aug 23, 2006
    Posts: 1,134


    That is going to be a cool Hot Rod.
  25. My avatar is chopped 5", I can see very well from it, just saying!! You've getting a great start, good luck to ya!!
    phelan9251 likes this.
  26. Joliet Jake
    Joined: Dec 6, 2007
    Posts: 494

    Joliet Jake
    from Jax, FL

    Great explaination, I see what you did there. When I get around to posting progress on mine I hope to point these things out. Most builds don't get into the little things that can really help most of us out. Great job on yours!
  27. This is a cool build and I like the stands you built for the build.
  28. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    I started work on the rear end. I had previously wiped out as much of the sludge as I could and had sand blasted the outside. There still was some dried on crud and and what looked like a some rust. I took a wire cup brush which was the closest in size to the I.D. of the housing that I could find and welded a rod onto it and chucked in a drill and wire brushed the inside out good. Next up I bought a round toilet brush and attached the handle to a piece of conduit to give me a longer handle. Using some degreaser and the toilet brush I was able to get the rest of the crud out of the housing. I then power washed it really good and dried it off with compressed air. I then spent what seemed like hours getting the rear end placed exactly where I wanted it so I could tack it in place with some plates. Every time I thought I had it right something else was out of wack. My garage floor is neither level nor flat and has dips in the floor where the car tires sat. The concrete is only like an inch thick in spots (it was built in the 30s or 40s) IMG_3741.JPG

    In setting my pinion angles I installed the carrier and thought I had made a mistake. IMG_3755.JPG
    My early Bronco rear end has the center section housing centered so the drive shaft at the rear end will not be in the center of the vehicle. After getting on the HAMB if figured out it was okay and I had not messed up. I then proceeded with my ladder bar mock up using tie-wire to hold them place. IMG_3757.JPG
    My ladder bars are a 35 and up Ford P&J kit which I can modify the front cross member to work with my frame. The ladder bars are chrome so are covered up for protection. I did not want chrome but got these from someone cheaper then a plain set so why not.

    I ended up selling the Hydromatic trans and 4 barrel intake from my motor so since I had pulled the intake off I thought I would get some of my collected parts out for the motor to see how they look. IMG_3752.JPG
    I had to pull the stock valley cover to get the intake to set down all the way and was IMG_3750.JPG surprised how clean the inside of the motor looked.

    Attached Files:

  29. well, that is a great surprise. hard to find an older engine that is that clean. What is the history on it?
    osage orange, Stogy and loudbang like this.
  30. etboy97
    Joined: Nov 3, 2007
    Posts: 191


    I got the motor from a guy off of Craig's List three or four years ago. I had checked to make sure it turned over okay. He had bought the whole non running 56 Olds to fix up and turn into a hotrod with a modern drivetrain so was selling off the motor and trans together. He had gotten it up in the California central valley somewhere. It had at some point in time been a southern California car as the Hydromatic had a rebuild tag on it from Thomas Engine Corporation in Pasadena California. The trans fluid in it looked rather good. The Hydromatic, 4 barrel intake and Rochester carb just got shipped off to a guy in Florida who bought them from me for his hot rod project.
    kidcampbell71 and loudbang like this.

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