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Projects Model T roadster on Model A chassis

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by trevorsworth, May 7, 2022.

  1. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    Figured it was time for a fresh thread as my project has evolved multiple times as I learn and my interests develop.

    105FC53D-DABA-4EC9-9BE0-2965901D7898.jpeg B4A69B03-B313-406D-A719-F540E3BDFE72.jpeg 830719B7-4968-498F-9987-E4B119A217F7.jpeg 6886C5D6-7F67-4734-9B33-11C58CB16C79.jpeg 7198C32F-E57F-4F46-B64C-7CD80E4B14D1.jpeg

    I put this roadster body on my A chassis and this will be my summer project.

    As the chassis already runs & drives I think it should be a relatively short hop to a street worthy car but if anyone has advice & experience to share for this combination I’d love to hear it.

    Current thoughts…
    • The body mounts aren’t the same, like many have claimed. I can figure it out but if anyone has pictures of theirs it would help.
    • The Model A steering column seems too long. What works?
    • Radiator is too tall! Are there any good chopped radiators on the market right now? I think I’d want to keep the Model A shell.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2022
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  2. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 13,457

    Budget36
    Member

    Heck, I just got caught up on your other thread!
    Can you cut the column down? Looks (from pic angle) you’d need a smaller diameter steering wheel so you don’t whack you knuckles though. Guess it’s be needed anyways?
     
    Stogy likes this.
  3. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 5,256

    sloppy jalopies
    Member

    '28-'29 radiators and shells are about 5" shorter and about 3/4" wider...
    they were knickle plated not stainless so a good one costs $...
    repop chrome '28s are about $125...
    memory says '62 ford 6 cylinder pick up truck radiators can have the side mounting "flanges" trimmed off
    and fit in a '28 shell......
     
  4. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I am sure it could be done, not sure I am the guy that can do it! I wouldn't want to find out by hacking up my really nice column but I have a junk one I could play with. You're right, a smaller wheel would be necessary. I talked to another guy with a T roadster on an A chassis and all he did was adjust the column to sit more upright.

    Thanks, that is great info... I wonder if I could chop my '30 shell down to fit a '28-29 (or the 62) rad. I like the '30 shell better.
     
    Stogy likes this.

  5. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 5,256

    sloppy jalopies
    Member

    if you are going in feet first i would consider reversing the firewall like a '30-'31... IMO...
     
  6. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 5,256

    sloppy jalopies
    Member

    your shell is stainless, so a good ss welder could make chopping it look good...
    your shell is a '30...
    a '31 shell has a small bead that runs from the bottom of the opening out into the frame clearance both sides...
    this really helps a chop because it can hide your welding seam, it hid henry's...
    i do it with stainless wire /extra gas pressure in my mig...
     
  7. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I like '31 shells even better... but have never had any luck finding a decent one.

    @RMONTY... I've got an offer for you. If you'll help me out with the metal work on this T, that V8 is yours. I know you need it!
     
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  8. sloppy jalopies
    Joined: Jun 29, 2015
    Posts: 5,256

    sloppy jalopies
    Member

    how decent ?
    i'll look and see if i have an extra '31...
     
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  9. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I never seem to find one with an insert!

    [​IMG]

    Here's a quick photochop for the rad... really improves the look.
     
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  10. raven
    Joined: Aug 19, 2002
    Posts: 4,702

    raven
    Member

    A 64-66 Mustang radiator will fit in a 28-9 grille shell perfectly and still has the side mounting flanges.
    r
     
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  11. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    The fuel tank cleaned up nice... lots of crud flakes came out but it holds pressure and doesn't leak that I can see. Guess I will plan around using it. Will fill it with evaporust to get as much of the rest of the crust out as possible... Looks like I pretty much just need to figure out what fittings to use and should be able to get fire after that.

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. RMONTY
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 2,550

    RMONTY
    Member

    I'll take you up on your offer Trev! Get some good pics of what metal work it needs. It might be easier to bring the body here where all my tools are if that's possible. I've got an A frame to bolt it to so there is that! Whatever we need to do we will make it happen!
     
  13. dwollam
    Joined: Oct 22, 2012
    Posts: 2,373

    dwollam
    Member

    I have done three '26-'27 roadster bodies on Model A chassis. All of them used Model A stock steering and worked well. I set the firewall close to the engine and use '28-'29 radiators. I also raised the body with basically a 2x6side of the cow board laid on it's side. That evens it out with radiator and just makes everything fit better. Heat and bend the pedals. The need pulled up some at the "elbow" and brought in some to clear the cowl. I extended the throttle pedal with a bolt union and a stud then used stock round pedal. Starter rod needs lengthened, last one I used a bolt union again. Last one I used 2 Model T radiator shells spliced together to make it taller and opened the neck hole up enough to fit a '28 radiator. Drilled holes in top of frame to use T body mounts in cab and also through the subframe. It's not very difficult. Steering column was in stock cutout in T dash.

    Here is the last one very early on with Touring front half and Model A bed. Hood is '24-'27 Dodge Brothers.

    Model T iron front fender/headlight mounts can have the long brace cut off and the headlight mount part will bolt to stock Model A frame holes to mount 7" lights.

    Dave 20200709_164034.jpg
     
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  14. Auggie Dawgie
    Joined: May 2, 2019
    Posts: 36

    Auggie Dawgie
    Member
    from New Jersey

    Irontrap has a video on making body mount tabs for the T body and stock A length frame. It's the sweet 16 T videos.
     
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  15. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    Posted a question earlier about using a Model A sediment bowl but quickly deleted it when I remembered the threads aren't cut all the way around on the larger step so would not be able to seal fuel. Figured something else out using a tractor sediment bowl and an elbow fitting.

    For electrical, I'm just gonna reuse the Model A harness. I'll adapt the A instrument panel and then it really won't know it isn't a Model A. ;)

    I worked on locating the body a bit. I got the rear body mount holes lined up and now I see what @dwollam means with the pedals - they are definitely going to need adjustment. But that won't be tough.

    I think for the front feet I am going to have to weld tabs to the frame.

    Found some structural bondo in the rear quarters around the edges. But it all looks fixable so far.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2022
    Stogy likes this.
  16. The rear mounts are the only ones that almost line up. They're in the right place to centre the wheels in the arch but a slightly different pitch. I pinned then down with an M8 bolt and once you've fixed the rest down you can open them up. Drilling up through the B post holes will give you a couple of fixings through the subrails.

    As for rads, I've had custom builds done with T top tanks, and A bottom. Offset top inlet and a scallop to miss the fan keeps the water pump and fan stock.

    10151864285737329.jpg 10151832141632329.jpg
     
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  17. Also - pedals. I took out the kickboard supports and then you don't need to bend the pedals. Made a new steel floor to suit that doesn't need the supports at the end. Your mileage may vary, but I'm six foot and there's room enough with the seat base in the stock position, just lowered a smidgen.

    Coupe at speed.jpg
     
  18. Great project!
    Unfortunately didn't get too far along with mine and sold it! Not one of my smarter moves!
    I still have seller's remorse.
    I liked the 29 radiator and shell, fwiw.
    IMG_0294.JPG

    IMG_0293.JPG
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2022
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  19. MojoRacing
    Joined: Mar 24, 2013
    Posts: 102

    MojoRacing
    Member

    Trevor, if a 65-66 Mustang radiator works as Raven states I have a decent one laying around if you want to pay the shipping from Fl you're welcome to it.
     
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  20. manyolcars
    Joined: Mar 30, 2001
    Posts: 9,233

    manyolcars

    After you get the rust out, it will rust even faster if you dont use tank sealer. I have done dozens of tanks in the last 40 years and the POR15 brand tank sealer is very good
     
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  21. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I need to do some research to see if it's the right move for me but man I'll totally take you up on that if so!
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2022
  22. Fjant
    Joined: Mar 17, 2011
    Posts: 212

    Fjant
    Member
    from Sweden

    Looks lite a very good start! I have a car with similar concept, but a touring body instead (sure whish it was a roadster thus). look at my project tread and you can see one way to do the body mounts. I have made a simple new subframe on top of the chassis (just four pieces of square bare, that I welded to the body).
    About the steering wheel, I don't think my sists really that far back. Maybee I have my body a little further back on the chassis (thus that should not be the case since the body styles should have the same wheelebase)

    Projects - T on A : Fjant the complete novice builds a hot rod | The H.A.M.B. (jalopyjournal.com)
     
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  23. MojoRacing
    Joined: Mar 24, 2013
    Posts: 102

    MojoRacing
    Member

    Cool, just let me know
     
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  24. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    Got the pedals adjusted & the body located properly.

    The bar stock I had that I was gonna make tabs with for the body mounts is way thicker than the frame... plus the more I look at it the more I'm not sure I like the idea of a butt weld on such thin metal, especially for a body mount. Need to think... I can probably just make some simple body blocks and drill holes in the frame for bolts.

    I had my body sitting too far forward... found the proper locating holes in the rear (they had been filled) and got it sorted and now the steering wheel is in a good spot.

    I checked out your thread this morning but wasn't in a good spot to type a reply. Your phaeton is coming along great. I don't have close access to many metal working tools but I like your square tube subframe...
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2022
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  25. RMONTY
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 2,550

    RMONTY
    Member

    Trevor let me know about the square tubing. Like I mentioned, I have an A frame to use as a pattern of sorts and lots of tubing. I need to earn that flathead engine! Let's talk through it and get this done for you. You are soooo close!!
     
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  26. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I was thinking if I am going to be hauling it over there anyway it might make the most sense to just bring the whole thing, chassis and all... that way we can do all the work with the car sitting on its feet just like it will be and don't have to shuffle the body on and off different frames multiple times. It isn't that heavy but clearing the steering column is a pain in the ass.. But I can't remember if you have room in your shop to keep it inside while we work on it.

    If we can keep it out of the weather for a couple weeks we can just figure out days for me to head over there early and work on it. With the two of us and your english wheel I bet we could get her all dolled up and ready for paint with a few days of work.
     
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  27. RMONTY
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 2,550

    RMONTY
    Member

    We will make room for it. Do I need to bring a trailer over to get it, or can you make that happen?
     
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  28. RMONTY
    Joined: Jan 7, 2016
    Posts: 2,550

    RMONTY
    Member

    I'm in between jobs and am interviewing almost daily so I'm not sure how long I'll be unemployed but whatever job I get won't require weekends, so there is that.
     
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  29. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    I can rent a u-haul trailer and bring it over there, not sure when though... this weekend I'm probably gonna be slammed but I normally have Sundays off. I'll give you a call later!
     
  30. trevorsworth
    Joined: Aug 3, 2020
    Posts: 1,461

    trevorsworth
    Member

    FDF8657F-D42B-4C16-B808-A716E4CD9EDA.jpeg

    Loaded up this morning and took off for the two hour trip to Robin’s!

    FF7C0C28-D4FF-47EC-934C-8959BA35A29A.jpeg

    We started testing spots with his Contour to figure out what we were gonna have to patch. This cab rear ended up being the worst spot on the car but we are pretty sure it’s fixable.

    We next set about separating the turtle deck from the body…

    4A4E9FD1-3874-47A0-BA8D-1C06D1BCDE61.jpeg

    It turns out this turtle deck is not the original. The remnants of the original were still stuck to the subframe & this one was slapped down on top and then bondo’d in??

    Once we got the turtle deck off the bucket and subframe revealed themselves to be really nice, so we cleaned up the remains of the original turtle deck and developed a plan to reconstruct the rotted inner structure of the current one. We will need to fix a spot on the subframe at the very rear but it is overall very solid. Unfortunately the panels above and below the decklid (and the decklid itself) are roached but replacements were readily available.

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    126A6C5F-3736-4BAA-8C3D-ADE1AC9BBA3E.jpeg
    A2E5B75D-B02D-4449-A175-C6CB59D1FD91.jpeg

    Power tools made short work of the remaining rivet heads and rusted bolts.

    We ordered all the patch panels this thing’s gonna need and studied all the parts of the body that we are going to be repairing or copying with Robin’s metal working tools. Hopefully I’ll be back over there next weekend.

    A04E9147-92C3-4A25-A970-97489315ED50.jpeg

    In this short summary it doesn't sound like we got much done but we really did make a ton of progress today in not much time.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2022
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