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Technical New to pre war, need advice

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by OZCAST, Jul 24, 2023.

    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    Looking at 2 hot rods. A 31 model A Tudor, or 27 T coupe. Both have traditional front suspension. No mustang 2, or anything like that.
    Do both have easy suspension upgrades that will let me do 70 on the freeway safely? I mean, easy as in keeping a traditional style suspension. I dont want a a mustang 2 or rack and pinion. Or if they are both in perfect working order, will they do 70 anyway?
    My gut says go with the A for $3k more, but only had late 40s and 50s cars until now and really have no idea on the limitations on pre war.
  2. Need pictures. When you say traditional suspension to me, no problem at 70.

    BUT, we have seen dozens of threads with cobbled suicide front ends on these cars that apparently have death wobble at 25.

    Your question is too vague and lacks information.
    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    Lucky 7 front end on the t

    Suicide with 4" drop axle leaf springs with hairpins on the A

    Best pics I can get

    Attached Files:

  4. Neither of those rat rods will make you feel warm fuzzy at freeway speeds. Art cars, a whole lotta design issues

  5. Cue the Ackerman angle guys
  6. Lucky 7 = garbage. Both are kinda as I suspected. The one with the cross on the radiator would fit perfectly into any death wobble thread.
    I rest my case. These are not good to learn on and are the typical trap for green horns. Good thing you asked.

    I get you're after a look, but from what I've seen 99% of people who build that look are clueless.
  7. Or muscle car dorks that think the want a rat rod. You are so correct.
    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    So that being said, and thank you, is there a company that makes solid suspensions I can look at for a good reference?
  9. I’d prefer the T. But I’d probably build another chassis.
    Shorten up the wheel base and give it a nice rake. Sell the wheels. Or at least the fronts.

    I’m out on the A
    Tman likes this.
  10. OZCAST
    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    I drive 60 miles a day on I5 and want to make sure I'm safe and other drivers are safe.
  11. Ford 28-48
    osage orange, Jim Bouchard and X38 like this.
  12. Just suggesting possibilities
    IMG_3043.jpeg IMG_3041.jpeg
  13. ask to see if you can take a drive in each. My guess is both will not be what you suspect. Hard driving poor ride. If you want something to just go to local cruise night, you might be ok. Really look at the way the suspension acts. Find out what cars are for sale, the longer you talk to the owners the real truth comes out.
    Good luck on your choice.
  14. As far as driving fast on a straight axle, one of our customers cruised 150 down the interstate. Only slowed down because it was a fendered car and he was afraid to lose one.
    Another straight axle car from that shop cruised around 260 at Bonneville.
    Handling, well one old hot roder/racer defeated some nice IFS European rides with a straight axle T on road courses back in the day.
    It’s all on the setup.
    alanp561 and OZCAST like this.
  15. Torana68
    Joined: Jan 28, 2008
    Posts: 1,400

    from Australia

    That A looks like you'd be sliding along on its chassis if you get a flat tyre :( keep looking, start reading on here. BTW the below Chrisman brothers car has trad suspension and went 180 mph, some people cant build one that will go 40 safely so you need to be choosy OR learn how its done AND not done. [​IMG]
  16. OZCAST
    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    This set up look better?

    Attached Files:

    WalkerMD and Tim like this.
  17. I live in your neck of the woods, and for an I-5 commute, IMHO you want something more road-worthy than what you've found so far. Remember the whacko's that travel that same stretch of pavement that you'll have to interact with each day. Your assessment of 70 mph is accurate as far as traffic flow is concerned, so you'd better be comfortable in that type of car at that speed and being at eye level with a semi's wheel bearings. Also there are areas of I-5 within 30 miles of exit 21 that will tend to be a handful in a car that is not set up properly.
    As suggested above, try to take each for a test drive to determine if that style is really what you want. Then look at scrub lines and other clearances.
    Take them for a ride on a less-than-smooth road to get a feeling for suspension travel, steering action, etc.
    Look them over carefully for build quality and maintainability.
    I understand and agree with the idea of a fun commuter hot rod, but decide your expectations, and go shopping with those expectations in mind. You may want to go to the Wednesday night "Beaches" gathering at P.I.R. to get an overview build styles and what cars might also be for sale in the area (there's usually over 1,000 cars there so you'll have a lot to look at). Talk to a few people with similar cars to learn more about the style and drivability.
    Good luck!
    WalkerMD, 37slantback, OZCAST and 7 others like this.
  18. mohr hp
    Joined: Nov 18, 2009
    Posts: 800

    mohr hp
    from Georgia

    Don't get discouraged, there are good cars out there! Lots of good advice here. Many guys are only going after a look; lots of rides that don't get any miles put on and just want to profile and look cool at events. Once you drive something, the issues become obvious. I'm amazed at some of the pretty faces with major engineering principle violations. Don't just buy something on impulse, be patient and look around. Good luck!
    WalkerMD, 41 GMC K-18 and Just Gary like this.
  19. X2.
    Download the P&J Catalog and review the front suspension tech articles and pictures in it. :cool:
  20. walls
    Joined: Oct 6, 2005
    Posts: 623


    At first glance, yes.
    WalkerMD likes this.
  21. Petejoe
    Joined: Nov 27, 2002
    Posts: 12,136

    from Zoar, Ohio

    If you provide better up close pictures we could provide a better answer for you.
    It may be setting better but that doesn’t necessarily make it safe. We are all happy to see a fellow ask for this type of info.
  22. Just profile shots really mean nothing when it comes to how well they handle. It's all about how they are put together. Yes, you can drive an I-Beam car at 70 all day long it it's done right. Most rats are for sale because they drive for crap.
    OZCAST, 41 GMC K-18 and Tman like this.
  23. 41 GMC K-18
    Joined: Jun 27, 2019
    Posts: 3,354

    41 GMC K-18

    Hey @OZCAST
    I was just looking at your information on your profile. So you are 43 and the vehicles you have listed on your profile, all 3 of them are cool.
    The 1950 Buick Super,
    The 1947 Dodge Pick up truck,
    And the 1958 Chevy Brookwood.

    Out of those three and totally considering having a safe ride, that you can drive the 60 miles each way daily, it seems to me that the Bookwood would be the one to invest in, engine and drive train wise, to have a comfortable safe ride.

    1958-chevrolet-brookwood (2).jpg

    Considering the price of gas here in Washington state, which is sky high, the Brookwood, weight wise may not be the most economical rig to use as a commuter daily driver. But it dam sure is appealing looks wise, no matter what age you are.

    @28phonebooth is spot on when he pointed out the variety of wackos out on I-5, I am a retired Teamster Truck Driver, I always felt safe in the trucks, but now in my daily driver, I am a lot more cautious about those all around me, when driving out on I-5 !

    I totally get the fact that at your current age, the post war rigs that you have or have owned, may not be giving you the "HOT ROD " visually cool looking factor, that you are seeking. But the advise and information that others have suggested here is good information to really take into consideration.

    DON'T copy anybody, or be fooled into impulse buying, strictly because of how the car looks. More than once in my life, I fell prey to that very impulse.

    Growing up, my friend had an Off Topic 1959 MGA roadster, when we were kids in High School.
    It kept him broke, and it was very uncomfortable, and a general pain in the ass, but I was always envious of him and the car as well.

    When I was in the Army, I bought one of those cars so I could be like him!

    old house Lawton (2).jpg

    In Oklahoma, during the winter, that was the worst car to ever own, and when I got out of the Army and drove it back cross country to Central California, as soon as I got on the freeway, in the rain, in Los Angeles, and I could see the word "GOODYEAR" spinning around next to my head, being next to big trucks, that pretty much got the message across to me loud and clear!

    That was my first and LAST British automobile, never again !

    I sold it and got a 56 International S-100, retired Bell Telephone line service truck. It wasn't pretty but to me it had all of the cool factor that I needed at that time, at the age of 22.

    56 IHC side view (2).JPG
    56 IHC happy daze (2).JPG

    So kiddo, take your time and really keep looking for the "HOT ROD" that meets all of the semi practical needs that you require, and keep safety in mind always. It's got to be safe, and dependable, and its got to be comfortable to endure all of that daily commuting in the insane traffic out on I-5 !

    It doesn't hurt to have the AAA -RV plus card in your pocket either, when what ever you have, breaks down and needs to be hauled to your house to start working on it!

    Your results may vary!
    bucket full of money.jpg
    All of this is just my opinion and nothing more !
    Go for it and spend your money wisely !
    Good luck from Dennis.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2023
    vtx1800, ClarkH, CSPIDY and 3 others like this.
  24. Bearing Burner
    Joined: Mar 2, 2009
    Posts: 1,101

    Bearing Burner
    from W. MA

    The tie rod in front of the axel are not called suicide front ends for nothing !
    41 GMC K-18 and OZCAST like this.
  25. OZCAST
    Joined: Oct 12, 2020
    Posts: 185


    I'll be able to once I see them in person. I just posted the ad pics.
    41 GMC K-18 likes this.
  26. This is a 4" dropped axle with a reversed eye spring. HRP

  27. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 16,328

    from KCMO

    Your third example looks better.

    the tie rod and drag link are behind the axle, parallel in the same plane or close enough, looks like ford parts not shitty lucky 7 parts and the shocks are at an acceptable angle.

    there is no reason a traditionally set up ford front suspension can’t go faster than you’d ever want to.

    if your felling shy about it and want to buy a solid complete front end I also would just send you to Pete and Jakes here in missouri for a complete package if that’s what you wanted to do

    - that being said where exactly do you figure you’ll find a shoe box sized radiator for that car to put the grill in the correct spot and not ten feet taller than the cowl after that big Z in the frame and channeling
    WalkerMD and Tman like this.
  28. After seeing the first two cars I would suggest you keep reading and pass on both, HRP
    gimpyshotrods and 41 GMC K-18 like this.
  29. Only drove my “T” once on the highway and it was pretty scary. When I was young and stupid, it probably wouldn’t have bothered me…
    Kept it for about two years before selling it and buying a later model (63 T bird) that felt safe for long distance travel.
    OZCAST and 41 GMC K-18 like this.

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