The Jalopy Journal
Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by guitarguy, Sep 19, 2018.
I dig it. I'm in for the ride and see where we end up. Nice job.
Thanks guys. The kudos must mean I'm on the right track.
I think the last major chassis work is putting on the wishbone brackets. I don't have a engine/trans yet, the "plan" was to build a new one for my stock T and take that one and put it in this. For those of you unfamiliar with T engines, the engine/trans are basically one unit that share the same "pan" (sitting in the chassis). So it's not just a matter of building an engine, its the whole package = EXPENSIVE to do right. But maybe I'll get lucky and pick up a used one along the way. For now, I just want to complete the rolling chassis.
The weather is starting to turn, so soon enough I'll be couped up in the house where it's warm, and can work on the rewooding of the body--will probably start that around December.
Just read the whole thread.....I really like the idea behind it and the DISCUSSIONS it created. Great job! Im inspired...
I believe the first hair pin radius rods were actually model t wish bones mounted on there sides heated , drown together and the perches were cut , turned side ways and with tubing incerted and welder back
Together and bolted to the axle . Kind of scary really , by today's standards !
The frames were zeed but a piece was hot riveted to the frame and the cross ,member
Was riveted to the "z" piece lowering the car a little .
Macs or ford t speedster kits use to exist when I was a member of the local model T club .
This is just some down the road thinking, but on the subject of brakes.
Of course, I want to be safe with this project, and people in modern cars drive like idiots--part of the reason I don't drive my stock T alot. So this maybe one of those deviations I make from the vintage pre-war look I am trying to obtain. I have no issues, with initially running the stock T brakes initially, but those aren't great, and only stops the trans/driveshaft, leaving alot of failure points in between there and the wheels. Maybe that's why the smart ones just used a complete A chassis with T body....well, I never said I do things the easy way.
It seems like juice brakes( '39-'48 ) that will fit a Model A would be real easy to fit on the front, being I am using A axle/spindles and A 19" A wheels (currently all sans brakes). These also seem like the most "hidden" setup I could get away with. I am not aware of anything else currently that can be as well hidden.
The rear on the other hand, I am not sure what I could do there, being I am using a stock T rear axle. There are disk brakes available for a significant cost, but those defiantly scream modern--but are a significant improvement even for a stock T. There are also mechanical brakes (such as Rock Mountains) that could be used, not sure how that would get worked in and combined with front hydraulic brakes though.
My other question is, can Model A rear hubs be used on a T axle? Are the taper dimensions the same?
Getting backing plates on the rear isn't (or shouldn't) be an issue, but getting a set of drums and hubs on may be. Or will I have to have some deal where I sandwich a drum, between a T hub and wheel pattern adapter for my A wheels.
Well, he was absolutely right. I just got this book and it is awesome. I am not sure if it will change my plans or what I have done, but if you truly want a dead on accurate 20's or 30's T speedster / gow job, this book is loaded with good info and great ideas.
Only progress I have thus far is pressing out the old spindle bushings, and removing the grease fittings.
I also know it will not be in the time period, but I am procuring a set of '40 backing plates for the front. I really want some safer braking for this thing, I'll just try and hide it all as best I can---which is going to be difficult on an fenderless car, but we'll see what happens. I will come up for something on the rear, probably a smaller drum set up off something more modern I think will work.
Managed to get a little more done. I tapped the spindle grease fittings for 1/8" NPT, and I bought original style, screw in grease fittings, which I'' install after painting. I then pressed in the spindle bushings, reamed them for the new spindle pins. Then I started on cutting off the old steering balls to weld new ones on. One is done, two more in progress, hopefully tomorrow.
I will also note, the "cheap" spindle pin kits are absolutely cheap! Split bushings with shallow grease grooves that darn near are wiped out after reaming. I probably will redo it with some quality solid bushings down the road, for now it's fine. I always seemed to get burned when I try to save a buck. I would really like to find a Nice set of Model A spindle pins, that don't cost a small fortune, so it has that stock look, of used stock parts.
Guitarguy you may find this book helpful as well
Not much happening. But thought I'd update none the less.
One of my exclusions in pre'35 parts has been made in the form of running four wheel drum brakes. I have not decided entirely what to do with the rear, it could be something more modern adapted. The front being that they will be prominently seen, I have decided to go as early as possible and use '40 Ford brakes. I bought Backing Plates, new Wheel Cylinders, Brake hoses, and New master cylinder. I have a Rocky Mountain brake pedal that has no cam eccentrics to operate the stock T transmission band, so this would be a good opportunity to retrofit it for juice brakes. Trying to get a hold of a couple 40's Hubs and Drums to complete my parts. A couple of people said they have them, but have not heard back.
I also took today of my vacation time to head over to a couple states to New Hampshire, to see another member from the Model T Club of America Forum and picked up some more parts. A '26-27 rear axle, drive shaft and tube I can shorten, a couple rear hubs, some misc pieces, a set of 26-27 side splash aprons (I love that look on Model A's), a engine assemble that needs further investigation as to it's usability, and a sorry sad shape '26-27 pickup bed that is bad enough shape I won't have any issues cutting it up into a shorter box---By the way, didn't realize how heavy that thing really is, even half rotted out. He was supposed to have the tailgate, but couldn't find it. He is also pretty sure he has a '28 Chevy head if he finds it---it would be nice to have a spare. So maybe in the future he can find those and I can pick them up.
Lots of parts, just need some time to do something. I'm in the midst of working on some Muscle car era stuff right now...need to clone myself, as bad as an idea that is.
Oh boy, Oh boy, winter is here. I am totally unprepared, and assumed I would have at least through Thanksgiving to get ready. Ahh, such is the great northeast.
Today I had off from work, so I seized the opportunity to get out before the temps are expected to plummet and more snow drives in tomorrow. It was a comfortable 40 with no wind today, so I managed to get a nagging project done.
I retrieved the '24 cut off touring body from out back and brought it up to the garage. What I needed to do was separate all of it so I could remake the new wood structure. Now mind you I am what I would call a "rough work" wood worker---you know, building things with 2 x 4's and plywood and such like that. I have actually done some finer work--mostly trim stuff, and one fireplace mantle under my belt for a friend, but I am no cabinet maker by any stretch. So this will be a journey for sure. I own a table saw, a band saw, sanders and a router, so I think I can make this happen. As wanting to keep true to the period, and being a Model T guy, there is no substitute going to happen here for the wood. I have also purchased two pieces of 8/4 x 10 feet long Ash boards to use and a set of body wood plans.
I took a whole bunch of pics for reference of how the heck this stuff is supposed to go back together, as well as hold onto the original screws that I could save so I can purchase similar new stuff (Slotted head screws of course). Being this has been sitting out side and it has been a extremely wet year, all the old wood was super soft and was hard to keep from disintegrating at the various spots I needed to dissect. All of it is now in my basement for some of those cold winter days when I want to do something but don't feel like firing the kerosene torpedo heater up in the garage and waiting 4 hours to get to a comfortable temp.
I have a 1936 edition of Dykes Automobile and Gasoline Engine Encyclopedia and it has a part in it on making your Model T faster - for racing or just having fun - part of it is a Strap-iron Z on the back of the frame to raise the rear cross-member, so the Zed frame has been around for a while. Maybe there are safer ways to do it than with strap iron but it has been done for a long time. If you can find a copy, take a look at some of the other things they did to lower the car and make it faster.
I was expecting to see new wood, not this
This is a safety question, not trying to be a chop buster, just how do you plan on welding in the new balls? Did you drill all the way through and plan to weld on the bottom as well as the area under the ball. I've always wondered how the guys that do them on an exchange basis do them. My guess is that TIG is best. Bob
Either in one of the books I have or somewhere online, I believe I have seen that. I agree, there are safer ways. Heck, some may not even approve of my way, but it's stronger than a stock frame in my opinion. What I like most of the way I did it is that I folded the frame, so on the top area of the kick up it looks almost as if its one piece.
Drive on up here and help me out. Things such as life, time, other hobbies, and motivation play heavily here. Heck, I assumed by this time I would have a full rolling chassis--might have if I didn't get screwed by a couple of sellers earlier this year. Sorry to disappoint, even in my best laid plans, this is going to take a while.
No problem Bob. Yes, I completely drilled through and welded top and bottom, I used my MIG. I do have a TIG, but have not used it in 12 years since I moved here, due to no 220 Volt service in my garage. Hopefully that will change soon, I have been planning for years on it.
I don't believe those people that offer exchange pieces drill completely through. And I have heard of failures that I have seen written on other forums with pictures showing those failures. If you drill all the way through, you definitely disturb the "look" of the piece. I am obviously not doing a resto of a stock vehicle, so safety first, which to me is weld top and bottom. If you look close in the pic, you can see the top part is already welded. I welded both sides at once while there was alot of heat in them.
Ok, I feel better, not your first rodeo, good looking project. You may have motivated me to do the kickups on my TBobber project. Bob
On the brake situation ,run ft brakes. They do 75 % of the stopping. Try driving a car with rear brakes only and you will see.
Like what you are doing.
Happy Thanksgiving all.
Thanks Fordnut. Yes, I will be running 40 Ford style front brakes, I have tracked down almost all the parts now. So it will still retain that old look on the front.
The backs will be drums of some sort, alot of it will depend on what I can get to fit and adapt to the T rear axle housing--and be the right width as far as getting the drum to fit the backing plate / shoe combo correctly. Should be able to use something off a small car im figuring, but the issues you run into are parts availability in the future. I think I have a set of near new backing plates that were used very little from when I had my Dodge Omni and had to replace due to the originals rusting out. Maybe they will work.
Just a little update: Things obviously went off the rails and onto the back burner (this is not a priority project for me anyhow). I don't move very fast on projects anyhow it seems---just ask my wife. Winter moved in fast around here, no heat in the garage...not that it matters because there is no room and the frame had to sit outside buried all winter.
Sometimes things have a way of working out. I recently discovered on here a diagram that explained the proper way to set up the radius rod and steering linkage between the pitman arm and steering arm to get the correct geometry. Glad I found that before I moved forward on the brackets for the radius rods.
Also, to someone that mentioned way early in the project to get an engine in there for mockup. One was procured last fall. I will be waiting to create a rolling chassis before I set it in, but at least I have one now.
Moving along as time and budget allow, but it's not my only project. So hang in there if your still following.
I'm trying at still cutting some wood for the body framing. What I have accomplished very well is making a bunch of expensive firewood.
This body rewooding stuff is really making me pull my hair out---and I have lots of it. I'm not quite ready to throw in the towel yet and just frame the body in steel (which would probably kill the whole traditional look), But I'm getting close to it.
How they massed produced all these complicated angles on these wood pieces is beyond me. I'm almost at 2 - 3 tries before I get a good one.
I did the same thing on my Tudor rebuild. I used just regular old Douglas fir and it came out ok.
Check out somewhere around page two of my build thread and it has some of the basic ideas I used for wood building.
Love the project.
especially the two pieces with coke bottle curves and rises that are under the ends of the cowl top! the way to make this was explained to me by an old timer on a T site made sense...you take a large square block trace your first curve then cut it... take your cuttings put them back in place now you have a "block" again... flip your "block" and do your next curved cut...out comes your odd shaped piece
That's a really good way / idea. I might have to try that. It took me alot to make the right side of that cowl piece. I don't look forward to doing the left side.
It's tough, because I have a set of plans, but they don't seem to be super accurate...and I am sure there is alot of variation car to car. I also have a good portion of what wood is left, but it dosen't necessarily match the plans. So I am just trying to fill in the pieces so to speak.
Well, still plenty to do. And being the body wood has me super discouraged, I decided to play with something else. Last fall I picked up a '26-27 engine. We had popped the trans cover off before I purchased it and the inside looked really nice. The crank handle was firmly stuck in the nose of the pan. So I thought to myself, if I could get the handle unstuck...maybe, just maybe I could get the engine to turn over. After near a half hour, I managed to to get the hand crank unstuck. Its amazing how rust expands things, because there was the typical amount of slop on the crank handle and its bushing once free'd up.
So then the big unknown, was the engine stuck---yup. Not surprised. It definitely was sitting out at sometime in its life. I managed to get the three of the plugs out and dowsed the cylinders with PB Blaster. The 4th plug was actually broke off and rotted beyond recognition, and I just sprayed through the hole. It probably will not come unstuck without some force, cast iron pistons are good like that. But ill get the process started at least. I guess the next step is pulling the head, but I'll wait a couple of days until it stops raining out.
Kroil oil may cost more than PB Blaster but I think it works better getting things unstuck. Bob
Diesel and ATF ...I've seen engines that sat out for 60+ years freed up with that combo ...also turbo 350 bands work in the T trans
Close Nailhead. Its the Turbo 400 clutches that fit into the Model T clutch pack.
Last night I pulled the head off, It was better than I expected, but still not great. It will need a complete disassembly to get it all apart. I am not sure if I want to get into that right now. Maybe i'll just keep soaking everything with lubricants of some sorts. I may try the acetone and ATF trick too. Cylinder #3 is pretty dang rough and if I had to guess the main culprit here. But no way could the valves move either thus holding the cam from turning so it's going to turn into a project for sure---which I figured. But at least I know where I stand now.
My Bobtail project will get this T engine, note the flood high water line Bob
my Grandpa told me a story about a hired man he had on his farm in Iowa in the 1920's and thirty's. He had a Model T that he made a hot rod out of. He "underslung" the axles or springs, can't remember for sure,it was 60 years ago , to lower the T. He also used a U&W carb, I think, and said it would do 100 MPH!
I too am over 70 years now, and finally have time and very little money to pursue my true love, hot rods. You should go to the museum that speedway motors has in Lincoln, nebraska. and the stuer museum in nebraska. lots of old junk to look at. see if you can get the underslung racing T of yours to 100 MPH!
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