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Projects Model T Gow Job

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by guitarguy, Sep 19, 2018.

  1. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    That's a pretty rough one for sure. Compared to "modern" engines, it's pretty amazing how thrown together these things can be and still make some decent power. The one I'm playing with certainly isn't the roughest if recovered, but it has its faults.

    I think I need to go back and look at making the chassis a roller, stick this engine in it and make my wishbone mounts. I just need some more time and motivation.....

    Sent from my XT1565 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
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  2. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Soooo, remember way back at the beginning I said this was a back burner project. Yup, as you can tell it's moving at glacier speed.

    The rewooding of the body has got me on a serious downer. It is quite a complicated process that I truly need to be in the right frame of mind to do. That and burning up three perfectly good bandsaw blades on reclaimed wood I was cutting for house trim only to find some hidden finish nails in the wood had me reeling on the purchase of more saw blades as money is definitely not growing on the trees out back.

    So back a few months ago, I reprimed two 19" A wheels I had straightened to a satisfactory state at some point prior. In the effort to get anything done, I decided to get at least one painted. I have had the paint for a while. It is Ace Hardware Stop Rust Harbor Blue. I have had good results in the past with it, and it is just about the right color I was after---although I thought it was going to be a touch darker. I'm still happy. A few touch ups and this one will be ready to mount. I have tires and tubes sitting here too. The tires are used but in excellent shape from a "stock" Model A guy that had to have white walls. So thanks to a friend that tipped me off to the craigslist ad, I scored his 5 tires for $100 plus a 3 hour round trip...the tubes and flaps I bought new.

    Speedster project 34.1.jpg
     
  3. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    So a couple of things concerning the body were bothering me. I had it in the back of my mind that the best way (to me) to do the wood work and get everything lined up, was to simply build it on the chassis, starting at the firewall. The problem with that is, I have no room in the garage, all my woodworking tools are in the basement, and the basement is to small in the small work area to set up the chassis....if I could even get it in the house and in the basement. So I was dumbfounded by this for quite awhile. Months actually. I finally came up with the idea to build a "mock" chassis section for just for the body.

    My first inclination, was to go visit the local metal supplier and buy what I need. But heck, I have enough things to spend my money on. Could I build it from wood? Yes, but I'd have to go buy that too. So I was out behind the garage and saw the back half of a frame (I used the front for a rolling engine test stand/ power unit and liberated the rear crossmember for it too). But, there was enough frame rail left for what I needed...honestly I was getting ready to just scrap this after 3 years of it hanging around, but I hate to throw out original Model T parts. So I moved a truck out of the garage for some work space and went to work stripping off the battery carrier, miscellaneous rivets, and the two body mounts still left. I also went and measured my frame outside and recorded the mounting locations needed and drilled the holes in the body jig frame. I used some factory holes for alignment reference points which worked great.

    Speedster project 35 body jig.jpg


    Saved the two body mounts, I am pretty sure (I hope) I have two more somewhere to make my set.
    Speedster project 37 body jig.jpg


    I then got to work rummaging around the garage looking for some tubing. Unfortunately, I only found enough to do one side. I guess I will be visiting the metal supplier after all. In the mean time, I welded a piece of angle on to stabilize everything and keep it square. I didn't want to use the angle steel as I did not want the flex in the body jig.

    Speedster project 36 body jig.jpg
     
  4. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Edit: I just realized from the post above, I never updated that I finished building the frame jig for the body. It cost me a little under $10 to get the last piece of tubing. It came out great and is within 1/16" or less of being perfectly square.

    Feeling a little under the weather, but making some progress. I started setting up the jig in the basement shop---which now feels WAY smaller with this thing in it. Working on getting things all leveled out, so far so good. I did have a slight head scratch moment when I couldn't figure out why the back of the rails were so low----Duh, for got about the taper built into the side profile of them.

    I also got a second wheel painted. I would have mounted up the tires, except UPS didn't feel like delivering my rim strips Friday like they were supposed to. Oh well.

    Speedster project 38 body jig.jpg
     
  5. 1-SHOT
    Joined: Sep 23, 2014
    Posts: 1,538

    1-SHOT
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Still following, I had several T's tubs as a teenager that we use to ride around no fenders and we would ride around in the woods. Had lots of fun with them.
     
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  6. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Did some painting today. Did the spindles, steering arms, , spindle pins, and touched up the perches too. None of this is perfect, but because it lives outside for now is totally necessary. Of course keeping the low buck theme, its all spray painted---Rustoleum is my choice.

    Upon looking at things, Although I won't know until it's assembled, I am really hoping the tie rod does not hit the original T crossmember---which is also the mount for the engine. As I finished installing new tie rod balls, I really got to thinking I should have mounted them upside down for more tire rod clearance. Time will tell when I start putting it together.

    Speedster project 40.jpg

    Speedster project 39.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  7. jimmy six
    Joined: Mar 21, 2006
    Posts: 4,760

    jimmy six
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Only guys who know what a "gow job" is are dead....
     
  8. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    So on to some Gow Job (Hot Rod for you younger folk :rolleyes:), progress.

    I think I found the reason why the wood kits for these old bodies are almost $3k -- They are a pain in the rear to make. Out of the three pieces I have made so far, I have had to make each three times. So on the second try for the door pillar, I decided to make it out of cheap fir wood from a 2x4, so I could have an accurate pattern. It still means I need to make the final piece out of Ash, but at least I wont be burning through the big dollar wood hoping to get my piece right.

    The biggest issues I am having is the wood left in the body, is rotten at the bottom. The old wood sills were long gone as was the bottoms of all the uprights. I bought a set of wood frame body plans, and I figured between that and my originals, I could make it happen. Not so. There is just two many subtle differences. Add to the fact, the "new" wood sills I was given, the gentleman cut the notches for the uprights, but they differ from the blueprint plans I have. Sooooo, I am just going to make patterns out of cheap wood and transfer them to the good wood later.

    This door pillar is still in the pattern stage but almost done. I have 4 hours into this little stick. Definitely not as easy as building a bird house. As a Model T buddy said to me today, "there is not a straight piece of wood on a Model T". True words to live by.

    Speedster project 41.jpg

    Speedster project 42.jpg
     
  9. Not all of us Jimmy. ;)
     
  10. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Finished up the final (I hope) door pillar, added the floor board riser, screwed the dash pillar, cowl support and door pillar together. Time to move on to the next section.

    I liberated the last section from the right side panel. It's 4 pieces total, but the pieces get a little bit straighter and "should" be a little easier to make. Once I got the last section out, I couldn't help but hang it from the floor joists with a piece of string. My concern with this is getting the correct "lean out" of the posts. I have a bone stock '25 Model T I can hopefully get some measurements from.

    Speedster project 43.jpg

    Speedster project 44.jpg

    Speedster project 45.jpg
     
  11. touring20
    Joined: Nov 27, 2007
    Posts: 211

    touring20
    Member

    Nice meticulous work !
     
  12. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Thanks, but I wish it was. Trying the best I can, but I am not a cabinet maker by any means. It should do the job though, and if not, I'll just cut the pieces again a 4th or 5th time, LOL

    Sent from my XT1565 using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2019
    kidcampbell71 and Nailhead A-V8 like this.
  13. RKS.PA
    Joined: Aug 8, 2019
    Posts: 8

    RKS.PA
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Chad, went back to your first post, and have enjoyed following your progress. I'm an old guy and have learned that sometimes "glacial speed" (as you mentioned early on!) is your friend!!!

    Nice work and keep it up!!
     
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  14. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    SOS!!! I have a serious issue I have encountered and need ideas.

    I obviously extended the front of the frame and with my straight across spring cross member lowered the suspension. Well, my recent thoughts have turned into my worst fears. The tie rod is in a direct path with the stock lower crossmember I left in place. The issue is, that crossmember mounts the engine, and I can not raise it above the engine with a hanging below engine mount, because it then won't allow me to use a stock radiator. The stock radiator sits right above the front engine mount. The stock engine mount is also designed as a swivel point to allow movement for chassis flex.

    When I first thought this might be a problem before I mounted the spindles, my thought was I could move the steering balls to the bottom of the steering arms---which sucks being I'd have to cut of the new ones I just welded on. But that would make the tie rod run into the split wishbones. So no go on that idea either.

    Any ideas at all here? I am sure I am missing something rather simple.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  15. dumprat
    Joined: Dec 27, 2006
    Posts: 2,314

    dumprat
    Member
    from b.c.

    Bend a drop in the middle to clear the crossmember?
     
  16. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Duh, of course. I must have been over thinking this to realize that. Thank You for the simple answer.

    I think that will work with no issues, I may have to trim the sides of the crossmember just slightly still to reduce it's height and gain some clearance there too, but because it is just holding the engine now (vs. also being a suspension mount), that won't be an issue.
     
  17. dumprat
    Joined: Dec 27, 2006
    Posts: 2,314

    dumprat
    Member
    from b.c.

    Glad to be of help
     
  18. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    And so the simple solution I was freaking out about was put into place. I made a template from 3/16" brake line I had around. But while editing the photo, I did have to facepalm myself. I was not thinking about the weight of the engine in place. But I believe (hope) it will still be OK, if not, I'll just bend it some more.

    My other concern was bending it effectively shortens the tie rod. The rod has 2" worth of thread on it, I marked 1" inward and screwed the tie rod ends on to that point. The good news is, once fully assemble, they look like they need to be screwed on a little farther, so no worries about thread engagement.

    Speedster project 46.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
    brEad, David Mazza, bct and 2 others like this.
  19. a boner
    Joined: Dec 25, 2004
    Posts: 5,192

    a boner
    Member

  20. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Thanks for the bump. Not a ton happening. Everytime I try to cut more wood for the body, it turns into doing it 3 or 4 times per piece.

    I want to concentrate also on making this thing a rolling chassis while the weather is still good before winter moves in. Getting tired of picking it up to move around.

    The down side is I could not get my usual off site winter storage for one of my vehicles in my garage. So that means I can't set this thing up in the one bay to work on for the winter. But that might force me to get the body done being it's in the basement.

    Today I installed the bearing races back into the now blasted and painted Model A hubs. I may not ultimately use them as I first planed, but again, I need to make the chassis a roller.

    Sent from my confounded device using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
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  21. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Managed a little bit more. The goal is a rolling chassis by Thanksgiving, with the mock engine sitting in it.

    I got the entire A front end together. I do have to change out the king pins (Cheap aftermarket ones meant for use with the bearing between the spindle and axle...not on top like a stock A) for some Old NOS aftermarket Model A replacements I bought..and shim the spindles as needed. But for now the goal is just make it a roller. I just need to assemble the tierods end and get the tierod installed.

    These wheels / tires are just rollers I had in the backyard that came off my 80's Dodge truck. If you remember from above, I have 19" A wire wheels going on for the rolling stock.

    Speedster project 47.jpg
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2019
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  22. David Mazza
    Joined: Aug 25, 2018
    Posts: 46

    David Mazza

    Paying even more attention to your wood structure fab. One more thing about your chassis. It is low but will be slightly lower still with the engine and body on with their added weight.
     
  23. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    I better brush up on my woodworking if YOUR watching.

    Yes the weight of the engine should ultimately put the chassis 6" to maybe 7" lower than a stock T. The determining factor for me on how far to go was the lowest point...the drain plug on the oil pan.
     
  24. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Managed to get a smidgen more done. Part of what I was not looking forward to was unearthing the rear axle I had from the bowels of the back corner of the garage. Honestly when I put it there, I never thought I'd be using it again...but you just don't throw out Model T parts.....you save them to build another car!:rolleyes:

    So with a little shuffling, and the use of my small Harbor Freight dollies (which by the way are super helpful when installing or swapping a rear into a car by yourself), I was able to wheel the axle assembly to a spot that was a bit easier to access once I moved my one truck out of the way.

    Speedster project 48.jpg

    Now that I had a space to work on it, I knew I had to disassemble the radius rods and driveshaft tube. If you remember, I shortened my wheelbase, so the tube and rods will need to be shortened also. This rear should be rebuilt as I'm pretty positive it still has the original babbit thrust washers, but just to get this chassis rolling, and initial up and running, it will be good enough. Next up, I'll bolt the spring to it and bolt it in the chassis. Then I just have to finish up my rear hubs with adapters for the 5x5.5" bolt pattern for ultimately the A 19" wheels.

    I didn't notice when this rear was in my stock pick up, nor when I removed it, But now that i have played with it, the one radius rod is far from straight. That may make it a decent candidate to chop up to shorten...unless I use the '26-'27 rear housings I have. Which ever I can adapt hydraulic brakes to will get used.

    Speedster project 49.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2019
  25. Guitarguy, I have an old T club newsletter, one of hundreds, and theres an article on adapting '64 Impala brakes to a large drum T rear end. I've never done it but these guys were all movers and shakers back then. If its a small drum it shows how to adapt (I think) Nash metro brakes. This wasn't from the MTFCA club, its the other national club. I bought something like 10 years worth from a guy at a swap meet once, all old school mimeographed newsletters. Let me know if you want a copy and I'll start a search. It's very short and to the point if I remember.
     
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  26. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    @flyin-t Heck yeah. I'll definitely take it if you can find it. I can send you my email if you do find it. Let me know, very interested.
     
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  27. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    Due to the Safety Police and Ambulance Chasers, I'm not going to tell you how I made my wheel adapters for the rear axle. But, if you know Model T parts, it's not that hard to figure out and see where the issues are and what needs to be done to deal with them. I chose to do it this way because the adapters being made are $400 for a set of 4----which I only need two. As I've actually seen the adapters being made, they are actually not that much different than whats shown here. Dollar wise though, I only have about $50 in the pair----and butt load of time in labor. But I need these to complete the project.

    I have these spinning to within, give or take .005" (I don't remember the exact figure but I think it might have been below that.) The hardware is Grade 8, and everything was torqued evenly to prevent any distortion. I do have the special plates needed to support the wire wheels correctly also.

    Hopefully tomorrow (or by the end of the weekend), I'll have some bigger news.

    Speedster project 50.jpg

    Speedster project 51.jpg

    Speedster project 52.jpg
     
  28. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 26,004

    The37Kid
    Member

    Nice adaptors, are the bolts a press fit or Loctited, so the lug nuts don't spin them? Bob
     
  29. guitarguy
    Joined: May 26, 2008
    Posts: 185

    guitarguy
    Member

    You have to have a ratchet on each side....or in my case, a ratchet to hold the bolt and a torque wrench to tighten the nut. Once torqued, they wont move. The bolts holding the adapter to the hub/drum are not a press fit like a wheel stud (only the ones in the adapter that the wheel actually bolts to are press fit.)

    I have this same setup run on my doodlebug for 4 years now, which has seen local road speeds as well as heavy work and experienced zero failures, or anything coming loose. But I am a bug about torquing things, and invested in various expensive torque wrenches to ensure accuracy.
     
  30. David Mazza
    Joined: Aug 25, 2018
    Posts: 46

    David Mazza

    The adapters are more than 400! Absolutely insane. I also need just two and I was even comfortable calling and asking for if they would sell just two. I’m doing the same thing guitarguy did! https://www.modeltford.com/item/2888A.aspx
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.

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