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Technical Lengthening a Ford wishbone

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by av8, Jun 11, 2005.

  1. av8
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 1,716

    av8
    Member

    There are any number of situations where one might need to lengthen a Ford wishbone to increase the distance between the perch pin holes and the pivot ball. One that comes to mind is adapting a ’33-’34 wishbone to an AV8 application in which a ’32 K-member is used to tie everything together. If you followed my bit of misinformation in “How to Build a Traditional Ford Hot Rod” and have collected a ’33-’34 wishbone for your parts pile that’s the situation you’re facing. Don’t despair, I’m going to show and tell you how to set things right.
    ------------------

    In addition to the ’33-’34 wishbone you will also need a Model A wishbone, and about 8 inches of heavy-wall steel tubing that will fit inside the wishbone. More about that later.

    Assemble the axle, ’33-’34 wishbone, perch pins, and spring and install them in the frame. Install the Model A wishbone in the cup, WITHOUT the rubber ball; you’ll be heating the forged Model A yoke to dull red which would melt and burn the rubber ball and make a helluva mess to say nothing of the stench. In place of the rubber ball, set a thick washer in the ball cup and another on top of the ball. Then install the cap and tighten the bolts. The washers will deform and take up the space normally occupied by the ball.


    String a come-along between the right and left perch-pin holes of the Model A wishbone and snug it up. Support the forward ends of the wishbone on jackstands, directly above the ’33-’34 wishbone.

    [​IMG]



    Heat the right side of the Model A yoke to dull red – near the welded joint where it connects to the tube – and draw the right leg toward the center until it lines up with the right perch pin. The Model A wishbone is 6-7 inches too short to actually reach the perch pin, so you’ll have to visually “project” that alignment, indicated by the red line. (You could clamp a length of angle-iron to the outside of the Model A leg and draw the leg in until the angle-iron contacts the perch-pin, but the visualization is good enough.) What you DO NOT want to do is draw the leg in until the perch-pin bore lines up with the centerline of the leg of the ’33-’34 wishbone. That will create a “kink” at the joint where the Model A yoke mates with the ’33-’34 wishbone.

    [​IMG]


    Allow the yoke to cool normally, all the way until it’s comfortable to touch. Then, heat the left side of the Model A yoke and draw that leg in in the manner just described. When that side is cool, cut the yoke off of the ’33-’34 wishbone at the welds where it joins the tubes. Make the cuts square to avoid alignment problems with the Model A yoke.

    [​IMG]


    Cut the legs off the Model A yoke at a point that lines up with the ends of the ’33-’34 legs. Make these cuts square as well, and add 1/16-1/8 inch to the cut line on the Model A yoke so you don’t come up short; it’s easier to remove material than it is to add it to get the fit right. Once you have the joints square and fit, chamfer both ends of each joint to ensure good weld penetration, and drill ¼-inch holes, ½ inch from the end of the joint, at 6 and 12 o’clock – on both the Model A tube stubs and the ’33-’34 legs. These are for plug welds that will lock the “splints” into the joint. Fit a 4-inch length of heavy-wall steel tube “splint” into each joint. The ID of the wishbone tubes is somewhere around 1-1/4 inch and you will have to do some grinding and fitting on the Model A yoke end. It won’t be snug, but it will be close enough.


    Align and clamp one joint together and tack it at several locations around the circumference and through the top plug-weld holes.

    [​IMG]


    Remove the wishbone and axle from the frame and you’re ready to finish welding, after which you can grind the joints smooth to create a lengthened wishbone that looks like it’s always been that way. (The finish welding and grinding were done a day after these pictures were taken. I’ll shoot a finished picture next week and add it to this thread.)

    [​IMG]


    This exercise can be applied to shortening a wishbone as well as lengthening it, and it’s not confined to the early Fords. The same thing could be done to fat Fords when later engines and transmissions dictate relocation of the transmission mounting yoke which also carries the wishbone cup.

    Mike
     
    FlatJan likes this.
  2. Levis Classic
    Joined: Oct 7, 2003
    Posts: 4,066

    Levis Classic
    Member

    Nice work and a great post.
     
  3. beatnik
    Joined: Nov 8, 2002
    Posts: 2,207

    beatnik
    Member

    Thanks Mike, Great Post!

    Someone put this one in the HAMB’s Tech-O-Matic.
     
  4. burtrido
    Joined: Mar 4, 2001
    Posts: 232

    burtrido
    Member

    Techo-matic please.
     
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  5. fab32
    Joined: May 14, 2002
    Posts: 13,987

    fab32
    Member Emeritus

    Good info Mike. Am I to assume this information will be included in any reprint of the How To Build A Traditional Ford Hot Rod book? It almost hurts to write the word assume but in this case I think it might fit.;)
    Also, are you aware of any other combinations of wishbones that will produce the same result in the Av8 application?

    Frank
     
  6. Mike,
    Great stuff! Thanks
     
  7. HotRodMicky
    Joined: Oct 14, 2001
    Posts: 1,763

    HotRodMicky
    Member

    Hi Mike,
    cool article !!

    Would a '32 bone fit?
    It's a little longer than a 33-34.

    Good looking chassis. Clean and simple.
    Will it not be zed in the rear?
    I was wondering a stock Chassis with a T-Sring in the rear will lower
    enough, so that so don't have to cut it?

    Michael
     
  8. Old Rod
    Joined: Dec 5, 2004
    Posts: 627

    Old Rod
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Brazil, IN

    Great article,really helpful info. Thanks.
     
  9. Flathead Youngin'
    Joined: Jan 10, 2005
    Posts: 3,661

    Flathead Youngin'
    Member

    Help set me straight here so I can add this to the book. I know there are some misprints. What bone did you wind up using or did you cut one to fit like you are showing here? The pics in the book do not look cut, but I know this can be edited that way.

    .....I keep all these measurements on a piece of paper in my wallet so when I'm at swaps or out trading, I have this stuff handy! Thanks for all your tech and great information!

    EDIT: One more question. I that 32 K member one of Verne's or is that and original? It looks original but I've always wondered what his looks like...
     
  10. HotRodMicky
    Joined: Oct 14, 2001
    Posts: 1,763

    HotRodMicky
    Member

    Mike answerd in another thread that even in the 3rd edition of the book they forgot to change the text from 33-34 bone to 32 bone.
    So you need a '32 bone "to follow" the book.

    It's an original K-Member (Am i right ,Mike??) :)

    Michael
     
  11. Ryan
    Joined: Jan 2, 1995
    Posts: 18,937

    Ryan
    ADMINISTRATOR
    from Austin, TX
    Staff Member

    This is a top notch thread.... we need more like this!
     

  12. Yes indeed, it is a top notch thread.

    Mike's threads are always a little different.
    They tell us something we need to know or show us something we should have been asking about, but didn't know any better.

    The little fact that they are so well done is a decided bonus.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Seems as well, we had quite a few highly informative and well done threads in the tech archive, but most seem to have gone missing.

    Are they stored away somewhere, perhaps awaiting resurrection when the tech archive is where you want it to be or are they lost?
     
  13. Geezus . . . only three days old and it's down to page 5?

    And only 400 views?

    So just what is the tradition on this traditional board? Gossip? Rumor-mongering? Post count increase questions?

    Strikes me as really weird when a totally off-topic bit can generate 2-3000+ views, an equivalent amount of responses and a highly valuable tech piece like this goes begging.

    AV8's a well respected member of the HAMB and respected in more than a few other places. With the time he obviously put in on this article I wonder if he wonders if it's all worth it?

    I'm a little disappointed in the HAMB's response to this article and before the flames begin, you need to think about something. Mike's a writer with a lot of stuff published. It probably cost him a chunk of income to share this info with us rather than have it published.

    Kudo's to those who posted responses of appreciation. For all the rest, I'm sure there's a word that fits. You'll have to dig it out though, I'm certain it won't be too difficult.
    Nuff said....
     
  14. CDNflatlander
    Joined: May 11, 2005
    Posts: 96

    CDNflatlander
    Member

    This is why I signed up to this web site!! GREAT JOB, and THANKS! It is a great insperation to us who would like to build but not sure on a 'better' way. There has been a lot of good tech articals, and look forward to each time that I can sit and read for a bit. The best part is knowing that these are being kept in an archive for US to use at a later date. Thanks to all!:)
    Greg.
     
  15. av8
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 1,716

    av8
    Member

    Thanks for the support, Jay, and thanks to those who found it interesting and maybe even helpful for some future project.

    This will get into print, in the new book Vern and I are working on for CARTECH.

    BTW, forgot to add that the Model A yoke provides a neat benefit it that it has a 1/2-inch drop from the centerline of the pivot ball to the centerline of the tubes which not only adds a couple of degrees of caster but also provides some additional oil pan clearance.

    Mike
     
  16. Hey AV8,

    Totally killer post! I look forward to your posts and always save them for later reference. Keep it going!

    Danny
     
  17. Maybe we're just saving the file (as I did) and moving on...?! Some posts require no response...it doesn't mean they're not appreciated (although I do admit a pat on the back does APPEAR harder to do these days than scorning someone!).
     
  18. Mike's posts are always filled with neat stuff. Not only the written content and the important items in the photos, but all the cool things in the background around Vern's shop! :)

    Looking forward to pics of the finished product.

    Mike
     
  19. HotRodDrummer
    Joined: Dec 10, 2002
    Posts: 1,827

    HotRodDrummer
    Member

    Great thread Mike!! :cool:
     
  20. Kevin Lee
    Joined: Nov 12, 2001
    Posts: 7,406

    Kevin Lee
    Super Moderator
    Staff Member

    Without doing any research I'm going to guess that on average Mike's tech posts get more views than any other pure tech post. And the reason it gets those views are because of the author name.

    I think the reason you don't see too many replies is that he does such a good job of it that most of the time it leaves no questions. ie - the man has been there, built it, and knows how to get his point across without boring us.
     
  21. Digger_Dave
    Joined: Apr 10, 2001
    Posts: 2,514

    Digger_Dave
    Member

    Thank you Mr Bishop!

    I was just waiting for the second part before telling you; "Your ACE in my books!"

    Digger
     
  22. Any way to restore the photos to this great thread? I realize it was five years ago, but still...
     
  23. Kramer
    Joined: Mar 19, 2007
    Posts: 910

    Kramer
    Member

    Are these the pictures you refer to? (see post #7)
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/showthread.php?t=453014

    I agree, it would be nice to have the pictures restored and then put this thread in the tech archives, if it isn't already.
     
  24. That's where I got the link, but I wish the pics were still here with all the text.
     
  25. I put the pictures back in.
     
  26. "This exercise can be applied to shortening a wishbone as well as lengthening it, and it’s not confined to the early Fords. The same thing could be done to fat Fords when later engines and transmissions dictate relocation of the transmission mounting yoke which also carries the wishbone cup."

    Has anyone tried this? I am building a 40 Ford frame. I'd like to put in an automatic without splitting the wishbone.
     
  27. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,380

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Richard, this does not really apply to the '40 in yor case. ( If I remember, you are building a stock wheelbase) the work to put an automatic in a 35-40 frame is equivalent to lengthening the bones. You just weld two bungs into the wishbones and spread them slightly, heat and bent the spring mounts back to parallel. the transmission mount plate supplied by CE already has the mounts for the rod ends built in You will have to remove the 35-40 vintage center of the x to run an automatic anyway. its not that big a deal and the kit parts are readily available. I'm using them on my '40. Good luck.
     
  28. I have seen that kit, but it is for a Turbo 350. If I'm going to wimp out and run an automatic, I'm definitely going with overdrive. Just considering options. Got most of the parts together for a rolling chassis now.
     
  29. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,380

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    200R4 fits in the same space as the T350. 700R4 will need lots of cutting on the X legs to fit. Oops, I presumed Chev / GM drivetrain. Ford AOD fits ok I think.
     
  30. bct
    Joined: Apr 4, 2005
    Posts: 3,084

    bct
    Member

    There are any number of situations where one might need to lengthen a Ford wishbone to increase the distance between the perch pin holes and the pivot ball. One that comes to mind is adapting a ’33-’34 wishbone to an AV8 application in which a ’32 K-member is used to tie everything together. If you followed my bit of misinformation in “How to Build a Traditional Ford Hot Rod” and have collected a ’33-’34 wishbone for your parts pile that’s the situation you’re facing. Don’t despair, I’m going to show and tell you how to set things right.
    ------------------

    In addition to the ’33-’34 wishbone you will also need a Model A wishbone, and about 8 inches of heavy-wall steel tubing that will fit inside the wishbone. More about that later.

    Assemble the axle, ’33-’34 wishbone, perch pins, and spring and install them in the frame. Install the Model A wishbone in the cup, WITHOUT the rubber ball; you’ll be heating the forged Model A yoke to dull red which would melt and burn the rubber ball and make a helluva mess to say nothing of the stench. In place of the rubber ball, set a thick washer in the ball cup and another on top of the ball. Then install the cap and tighten the bolts. The washers will deform and take up the space normally occupied by the ball.




    String a come-along between the right and left perch-pin holes of the Model A wishbone and snug it up. Support the forward ends of the wishbone on jackstands, directly above the ’33-’34 wishbone.
    downloadfile-32.jpg

    Heat the right side of the Model A yoke to dull red – near the welded joint where it connects to the tube – and draw the right leg toward the center until it lines up with the right perch pin. The Model A wishbone is 6-7 inches too short to actually reach the perch pin, so you’ll have to visually “project” that alignment, indicated by the red line. (You could clamp a length of angle-iron to the outside of the Model A leg and draw the leg in until the angle-iron contacts the perch-pin, but the visualization is good enough.) What you DO NOT want to do is draw the leg in until the perch-pin bore lines up with the centerline of the leg of the ’33-’34 wishbone. That will create a “kink” at the joint where the Model A yoke mates with the ’33-’34 wishbone.
    downloadfile-38.jpg
    Allow the yoke to cool normally, all the way until it’s comfortable to touch. Then, heat the left side of the Model A yoke and draw that leg in in the manner just described. When that side is cool, cut the yoke off of the ’33-’34 wishbone at the welds where it joins the tubes. Make the cuts square to avoid alignment problems with the Model A yoke.
    downloadfile-43.jpg
    Cut the legs off the Model A yoke at a point that lines up with the ends of the ’33-’34 legs. Make these cuts square as well, and add 1/16-1/8 inch to the cut line on the Model A yoke so you don’t come up short; it’s easier to remove material than it is to add it to get the fit right. Once you have the joints square and fit, chamfer both ends of each joint to ensure good weld penetration, and drill ¼-inch holes, ½ inch from the end of the joint, at 6 and 12 o’clock – on both the Model A tube stubs and the ’33-’34 legs. These are for plug welds that will lock the “splints” into the joint. Fit a 4-inch length of heavy-wall steel tube “splint” into each joint. The ID of the wishbone tubes is somewhere around 1-1/4 inch and you will have to do some grinding and fitting on the Model A yoke end. It won’t be snug, but it will be close enough.


    Align and clamp one joint together and tack it at several locations around the circumference and through the top plug-weld holes.
    downloadfile-39.jpg
    Remove the wishbone and axle from the frame and you’re ready to finish welding, after which you can grind the joints smooth to create a lengthened wishbone that looks like it’s always been that way. (The finish welding and grinding were done a day after these pictures were taken. I’ll shoot a finished picture next week and add it to this thread.)
    downloadfile-15.jpg
    This exercise can be applied to shortening a wishbone as well as lengthening it, and it’s not confined to the early Fords. The same thing could be done to fat Fords when later engines and transmissions dictate relocation of the transmission mounting yoke which also carries the wishbone cup.

    Mike
     
    kidcampbell71 likes this.

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