Register now to get rid of these ads!

How do you correctly lower a Model A with PRE war parts?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by JTW, Dec 1, 2012.

  1. 38standard
    Joined: Jan 4, 2010
    Posts: 322

    38standard
    Member
    from il.

    Will you be using 39 juice brakes?
     
  2. Man you drilled the look! Are the tire sizes 5.0's and 7.50's? Great stance.
     
  3. Are you aiming for a pre-war build or something from the mid to late 40's?

    Seems to me (based on photos on the AHRF site, SCTA programs, and books that chronicle dry lakes racing) that there is quite a difference between, say the 1938-45 period and the 46-48 timeframe. Photographs tend to show single carb setups (lots of Winfields) in the late 30's to immediately after WWII - giving way to dual carb setups by 1946-47. Zepher was evidently in business in '47 and there are a few Evans intakes mentioned in the Aug 10 1947 SCTA program for trials at Harper Dry Lake.

    Winfield heads were widely used prior to WWII (42 of 106 A & B powered cars used Winfield heads at Muroc in '38), but seem to give way to the Rileys and Cragars by '47 (only 4 of 24 A & B Fords used Winfield heads at the Harper meet).

    Photographic evidence seems to suggest some cars used 19" wheels (presumably some 21's too) in the late 30's, but as WWII drew near most folks seem to have transitioned over to the more readily available 16" setup. Blackwalls appear to outnumber whites by a wide margin in both eras.

    IMHO, there's no need for a fancy - schmanzy ignition setup, unless you can find an old WICO mag, a warmed-over B distributor should serve you well.

    As for the suspension, I'm just not seeing many dropped A axles, and virtually none prior to the war. A 32-36 axle can be found cheap and you can easily fab up a set of tabs for the perches to maintain mechanical brakes (although the 32-34 perches aren't as difficult to find as some people make them out to be...just gotta know where to look - I found 2 sets in a week).

    Personally I think it would be hard to go wrong with a Winfield head/intake/carb (or home-made intake) and 19" wheels on a late 30's build. For a postwar car I'd swap out the Winfield intake & carb for a dual Stromberg setup and roll on 16's.
     
  4. bonesy
    Joined: Aug 14, 2005
    Posts: 2,999

    bonesy
    Member

    Great topic.

    Chris's roadster nails the look. Lower is a relative term - it's lower than stock - but not low by late '40s / '50s standards. The parts he used (and removed) give it the perfect pre-War stance in my opinion. Ride height is just a part of the overall stance.
     
  5. hoggyrubber
    Joined: Aug 30, 2008
    Posts: 568

    hoggyrubber
    Member

    yes, good info. thank you.
     
  6. n.z.rodder
    Joined: Nov 18, 2008
    Posts: 1,016

    n.z.rodder
    Member

    Threads like this should get a sticky, some great info for sure.

    Scotty
     
  7. Here are some resources that might help give some direction;

    40's era discussion - http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=422177
    HAMB Monthly Banger Discussion - November: http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=748558
    December: http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=756836

    Photos of note:
    Pat Campea's Winfield equipped A circa 1937 (note wheels, single Winfield Carb, and what appears to be a Winfield 7:1 'Red Head')
    [​IMG]

    Don Ferarra (left) and Don Mills' (right) A Roadsters in 1943 - Both cars sporting single carb intakes & stock exhaust manifolds;
    [​IMG]

    Ferarra (right) & Barnes' (left) roadsters, also circa 1943 - note stock A axle on the Ferarra car - 32-36 axle on the Barnes';
    [​IMG]

    Another shot of Ferarra's roadster - 1943, Stromberg carb, B distributor, stock exhaust manifold, not sure what the cylinder head is...plug orientation does not match a Winfield - possibly a 'police head'?
    [​IMG]

    'Monk' Thormin's '27 T Roadster (on A frame) with 32 axle, circa 1946;
    [​IMG]

    Bob Taylor's A Roadster (32-36 axle), 1947;
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Agreed 100000000%
    Exhibit A: Tommy Sparks (Rosamond meet, 1945);
    [​IMG]

    And B: Dick Megugorac's A in '46;
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. JTW
    Joined: Sep 4, 2010
    Posts: 277

    JTW
    Member

    yes
     
  10. JTW
    Joined: Sep 4, 2010
    Posts: 277

    JTW
    Member

    Was planning on using Riley, or home made. I located a SICK little brazed home made intake, probably from later 30's, buit the older guy would not let it go. I may end up going more for the mid 40s as of late, Guess I can play it by ear.
     
  11. JTW
    Joined: Sep 4, 2010
    Posts: 277

    JTW
    Member

    Dang man, I already did the A motor with new babit, .050 POP ups ETC. Sick little banger. It NEW from front to rear of trans. Trans even has has new clutch, gears and TQ tube. Im half way leaning tword using a 39 60HP flatty swap. SIGH! I want to drive the car ALOT! Im just not so sure that the little banger will like to drive that much?
     
  12. The banger will run just fine. Keep in mind that, historically, the A & B banger was extremely popular in dry lakes racing through at least the late 30's. The 1937 event at Muroc had 28 A & B 'banger powered cars vs. 16 v8's. The '38 results show the highest speed recorded for the season was a blistering 136.33mph set by an A 'banger (fastest v8 was 130.81mph). The '47 SCTA program also shows a fair number of 'bangers, but by then the v8's were more dominant (in terms of numbers). I would imagine that this trend would have been similar across the country - although the mass movement from banger to v8 probably lagged behind the SoCal guys by a few years.

    A warmed-over flathead A with a mild street cam and single carb is fully capable of 60-65 horsepower....All depends on what you want and how tied to period correctness you are. IMHO, it's not impossible to imagine that hot A bangers would have been a good choice through the mid-to-late 40's in most areas of the country.
     


  13. 5.50's and 7.50's. I put a B in it warmed with a SU-1R Winfield cam, Winfield 6.4:1 head, Mallory ignition, dual header with dual exhaust, Burns downdraft with a pair of 81's, lightened flywheel and a counter balanced crank. I mated a 37-38 helical gear trans behind it with a Cling's adapter. Car ran HARD and did freeway speeds with little effort.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  14. Heres the coupe when I got it :D:D:D

    [​IMG]
     
  15. Heres my roadster with all A running gear. It had stock front and rear axles, I removed a couple leafs out of the front and reversed the eyes, and ran a T spring out back. Ran the old engine/trans out of my coupe, along with all the stock mechanical brakes out of my coupe. One of the most fun cars I ever owned...


    [​IMG]
     
    ModelAPunk likes this.
  16. TULSA
    Joined: Sep 27, 2008
    Posts: 659

    TULSA
    Member
    from Tulsa

    ^^^ Love that.

    Is it possible to run drop front axle and the mechanical brakes?
     


  17. Yeah, Elrod did a tech on it a while back. Requires some V8 parts and fabbing to do it...but in my eyes wouldn't be easier to run hydraulics???
     
  18. TULSA
    Joined: Sep 27, 2008
    Posts: 659

    TULSA
    Member
    from Tulsa

    Thats what everyone says. Something interests me in running the mechanical. I at least want to try it out, I hear mixed reviews some love them and some dont. I would like to keep this thing as close to original as possible, other than the flathead and chop.
     
  19. aerocolor
    Joined: Oct 7, 2009
    Posts: 1,152

    aerocolor
    Member
    from dayton

    `32 frame using`39 rear axle and buggy spring with leaves removed and mount moved up.
    Front is 5"dropped axle w/`39 spindles, mono spring and of course the wide fives were retained.
    I wouldn`t want to go any lower. The trans is a `39 and the drain plug is 3" off the ground.

    Rides and drives well for having bias ply tires.
     

    Attached Files:

  20. Elrod
    Joined: Aug 7, 2002
    Posts: 3,557

    Elrod
    Member

    Here is that post of lowering the car with mechanical brakes.
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=332870



    Parts I used....

    - 32 spindles (you can probably still use the A spindles)
    - 32-34 spring perches (because of the longer mechanical brake arm)
    - home made brake actuator riser off 32 perch
    - STRETCH dropped Model A axle from Oakie Joe $250 Click here to order
    ........(stretched so the steering arms don't need to be heated and bent. They don't hit the axle.)
    - Reversed eye spring at home TECH HERE
    - T rear spring with 2 leaves removed
    - 5.50x16 tires in front and 7.00x16 in back


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    From this

    [​IMG]


    To this (in a weekend)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2012

  21. '37 maybe '35/6. Spring behind the axle and on front of the front axle are pre-war. I have actually seen A roadsters with spring in front of the axle but I cannot tell you for a fact that it happened before the war.
     


  22. Spring behind rear axle started in 1932
     
  23. kirby1374
    Joined: Dec 16, 2008
    Posts: 427

    kirby1374
    Member

    I am interested in a 32-36 axle in my A. I originally was looking for a complete axle and splindles so I could use my stock A steering box. I am seeing more axles minus the spindle for sale. Would I be able to use my A spindles on the 32-36 axle without any tierod problems? Just looking at it, it seems that the tierod would be too close to the oil pan with A spindles.
     
  24. Boy, god info here!
     
  25. There ya go. Question answered.

    I have put a lot of longer shackles on later '30s fords to lower them. Seems to be a gap in general for me i jump from As to the ugly ducklings. I have fiddled with few of the cars in between but not as much as the others.
     
  26. jeff020571
    Joined: Nov 9, 2011
    Posts: 70

    jeff020571
    Member
    from france

    Chris, your A has the exact stance i want for mine, how did you lower the back ?
    I was thinking on using the vern tardel z'ing method but if it's possible to have the same stance by replacing the A spring for a T spring, i would prefer that instead of cutting my original frame.

    Elrod how is the ride with 2 leaves out of you T spring ?Does sometimes tires hit the back fenders ?

    Thanks again for all the good infos!!
     
  27. F-6Garagerat
    Joined: Apr 12, 2008
    Posts: 2,651

    F-6Garagerat
    Member

    Here's my 31 pickup. Front is Model A axle with a 3" drop, front spring is a 3 leaf low arch reversed eye I got from a guy that makes custom springs. Rear is an "A" spring. Leaves removed, ends heated and bent. 3 leaves in pic, 5 leaves installed total. Here it is installed also.

    Sent from my Droid powered Samsung Galaxy S
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jan 17, 2013
    Jamie325i likes this.


  28. I just ran a T spring, no frame cutting required.
     
  29. jeff020571
    Joined: Nov 9, 2011
    Posts: 70

    jeff020571
    Member
    from france

    Thanks for the answer Chris, do you know what is the wheel backspace and offset ?
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2020 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.