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Projects RoadFarmer's 1947 Ford Sedan Build

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by TexasSpeed, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    Steven had Austin Speed Shop finish up his '55 Chevy gasser for the GNRS and it turned out bitching! If you're attending the show over the weekend, be sure to check it out!

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    While that car has front and back seats, the fact that it was a 2-door post and had a roll cage inside didn't make it so friendly for whoever wanted to ride in the back seat. Steven bought this '47 Ford off BobWop, I believe. This was a much more family-friendly alternative so all his boys could hop in the back and tag along. It arrived at his house in Earth and he drove it around for a bit. The cool part is it's basically all stock, but the bummer part is it's basically all stock. Earth is a small town which is miles and miles away from anything worth going to. Steven wasn't thrilled with the stock three-speed topping out at 55-60 miles an hour going anywhere. So when he came and picked up the '55, he dropped the '47 off for some upgrades.

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    I'll update in a bit more on what we're doing to this clean girl. The body will stay intact, it's entirely mechanical upgrades and some modern concessions.

    Stay tuned.
     
  2. Jalopy Joker
    Joined: Sep 3, 2006
    Posts: 27,259

    Jalopy Joker
    Member

  3. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    The plan for this one is to swap out the 3-speed in favor of a T5, which means doing an open drive conversion on the banjo rear and changing from a transverse spring to parallel springs. All 4 brakes will be ditched in favor of Lincoln brakes. The front axle will get changed out for a 5" drop axle, split the wishbone, new leaf spring, and tube shocks in place of the lever shocks on all 4 corners.

    I will also be cleaning and detailing the stock flathead, getting the stock 16" wheels powdercoated black, and some small cosmetic stuff. We aren't going to touch the paint on the body, or change the interior aside from adding the floor shifter, I believe.

    I began by taking the hood off then the front clip off, front suspension, and drivetrain. To gain some room back in the shop, I went ahead and disassembled the entire front suspension and took the transmission off the flathead engine. The rear suspension will be coming out next along with the pedal assembly. Here are a few in-progress shots of disassembly..

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    Did these cars come with a bug screen in front of the radiator from the factory?

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    I'll also be replacing some of the uglier parts of the car like where the new exhaust was welded to the old exhaust..

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    But that pretty much brings us up to today.
     
  4. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    Just got the rear end out. Now we can start cleaning up the frame and start playing with the new stuff!

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  5. bobwop
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 6,099

    bobwop
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    this is going to be fun to watch!
     
  6. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 12,830

    Tim
    Member
    from KCMO

    Awesome Matt :)
     
  7. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    It's been a while since I updated.. Been waiting on parts to get here. The rear parallel leaf spring kit from Posies arrived a while ago so I got to work getting the brackets in. With this kit, you're supposed to get a couple pages of instructions and templates. For some reason, I only got one page out of the two or three that come with it. Thankfully it had all the important measurements I needed to know, so I promptly got to work measuring up everything and getting it all bolted in.

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    In this picture, on both sides, the chisel is pointing at a hole.. there wasn't enough room to get a drill in for this hole for the rear bracket. I'll come back to this later.

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    We're trying to reuse as much of the old exhaust as possible, but it seems like the more parts arrive, the more of it we have to cut out. We'll reuse what we can and fill in what we need to.

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    Open drive conversion installed..

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    Degreased the engine on the pallet as much as I could.. We ordered a flathead stand adapter from Flathead Jack which arrived later. That adapter is great but I had to drill in the 1/2" holes for sticking a screwdriver or bolt through the top to prevent the engine from rotating on the stand. It tends to want to lean backwards. For some reason, I don't have a picture of the adapter, so I'll throw one up later.

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    Thankfully I've only had trouble with taking off just one exhaust bolt which sheared off. Everything else came off pretty easily on this 70-year old car. I just welded a nut on top, hit it with a hammer to break it loose, let it cool off then it came right off.

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    Threw the Reds headers on there for shits and giggles.

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    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
    kiwijeff, kidcampbell71 and bobwop like this.
  8. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    I couldn't set the pinion angle on the banjo axle until I had the T5 transmission mounted. It was a few days before the T5 arrived, so I threw the adapter on the engine then the transmission.

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    I should mention, the T5 transmission mounting holes needed to be drilled out to 1/2" to mount to the adapter.

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    Hoisted the drivetrain into the engine bay to see what needed to get cut out. The front half of the floor screws in, so I took that out. I had to cut into the brace and floor down by the seat to get the tailshaft back into the X-member.

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    It was evident the center part of the X-member would have to get cut out for the tailshaft to have room back there as well as mount to a plate I would have to make. A transmission mounting plate was ordered from Chassis Engineering, but it wouldn't work with the T5 because it was designed for other automatic transmissions. So I took the pattern, made my own base out of 1/4" stock we had laying around, trimmed it down to fit around the transmission and mount up to the X-member. I also trimmed the bottom of the X-member so the plate could bolt up further back to compensate for the length of the T5.

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    Luckily the mechanical speedometer hole lined up with one of the holes in the X-member. I will have to trim the center a little more but it worked out perfect.

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    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
    bobwop and kidcampbell71 like this.
  9. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    Drilled out the holes for mounting the plate and mounted the rubber cushion for the transmission..

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    In the above picture, the mount is backwards.. The circular part should be facing rearward. The bolts will all be swapped out with graded hardware later.

    So now the drivetrain is mounted, after some consulting with Eric, he suggested we throw the U-bolts and spring plates on, hubs and wheels and put it on the ground to ensure the axle is centered. That's when I found out the U-bolts aren't wide enough for the tapered housings on the banjo.. These are for a 9-inch. So we will be exchanging these U-bolts and plates for the correct ones from Posies soon.

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    At this point, I'm waiting for those parts to arrive. Until then, I threw the left header on to see if it fit. The clamp on the mast jacket was a little too close so I loosened it up, turned it away, and tightened it up.

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    I forgot to mention, but obviously the original transmission mounting bracket had to come out for all this to work..

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    Thanks for following along!
     
    bobwop likes this.
  10. JimmyD3234
    Joined: Dec 3, 2015
    Posts: 553

    JimmyD3234
    Member
    from PA

    LOOKING - GOOD - MAN - it will a nice RIDE :cool:
     
  11. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 17,103

    alchemy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Can you tell us why you kept the banjo rear, converted it to open drive, and parallel springs? Wouldn't it be much easier/cheaper to just pull a 9" from a Mustang or pickup?
     
    Dan Hay likes this.
  12. The conversion for the banjo was only a couple hundred bucks. I guess we could have gone 9".....never really even thought about it.
     
  13. cory27t
    Joined: Apr 5, 2011
    Posts: 406

    cory27t
    Member
    from US

    Great work! Subscribed.
     
  14. 222.jpg
    Here's a photoshopped version of the car someone did for me in the photoshop thread.
    Hoping it turns out something like this. I'm thinking I might just run center caps with no rings, atleast for a little while.
     
  15. Matt played dressup with my car a couple weeks ago and sent me some pics.....
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    I really like the pic with his big chrome rings....but those are hard to find.
    I'm liking the center cap only for now

    Looks good with the big 7.50s underneath, but he said it was a tight fit. Maybe I'll run some 7.00s when I need new tires someday.
     
  16. ...what's the rearend gear ratio ?
     
  17. Thor1
    Joined: Jun 6, 2005
    Posts: 1,604

    Thor1
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    rusty,

    It is most likely a 3:78 - this was the most common ratio used. But...I could be wrong.:(
     
  18. Yep, Thor is right 3.78
     
  19. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    The 7.00s are only just smaller than the 7.50s.. I would stay with the 6.00s you have for now. I wish we had 6.50s and 7.00s at the shop to try.

    I need to update this, but I've been under pressure to get this finished ASAP. :eek:
     
  20. Sent this coin to Lucky Burton to set in an old shift knob....should turn out pretty cool.
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  21. CMenard
    Joined: Nov 18, 2006
    Posts: 36

    CMenard
    Member

    I vote for update this... :)

    Currently working on a very similar project. 1947 coupe, flathead t-5 combo, Open drive banjo, Posie's stuff front and rear.
     
    RoadFarmer likes this.
  22. Here's a little sneak peek. I'll let Matt explain what he's done. It's come a long way.
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  23. Did the clutch pedal hit the exhaust pipe before you took it apart?
     
  24. I don't think so.
     
  25. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    Sorry for the lack of updates.. A lot has been happening at the shop lately. My roadster project after-hours.. Preparing the shop for the Round-Up.. And what life outside those I had left. Haha.

    Since the last update, the correct U-bolts came in for the rear axle, so I bolted that in, set the pinion angle, measured to make sure it was centered then tacked the brackets to the axle housings. I blew the rear end apart to clean out inside of the housings prior to TIG welding the brackets on.

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    I impressed myself with welding them on. I was very self-conscious about laying them down unevenly.. I wanted to have Eric weld them on, but he encouraged me to weld them myself. Not too bad for having just learned how to TIG a few short months ago. :)

    Then assembling the banjo, Eric noticed the gear teeth were pretty worn down. She was a driver for sure. So we ordered a new ring and pinion set, staying with the 3.78s. I had never rebuilt a banjo axle before, so this was a neat learning experience for me.

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    I also welded on some plates to strengthen the Pete & Jakes' shock mounts which bolt right where the lever shocks used to.

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    I'll post about the front end next if I can fit it in before the end of my lunch break..
     
  26. TexasSpeed
    Joined: Nov 2, 2009
    Posts: 4,618

    TexasSpeed
    Member

    While I was working on the banjo, stuff for the front end started coming in..

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    So, as soon as the rear axle was done, I got to work right away. The new axle is narrower than the original. For a while, Eric and I were almost confident we could keep the unsplit wishbone until the axle got here. Then the spring confirmed that the bones would have to be split. The bone mounting plate we got wouldn't work with the T5, so I went ahead and made some tabs to mount the bones to the transmission mount plate, making it dual-purpose.

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    One of my favorite parts of a build thread is where the original poster shares a tip or a trick they use to improve the quality of their build. I have a couple that I haven't seen anyone share recently, so this is for all the new guys out there.. When splitting the bones, clamp them together so when you grind the ends, it stays the same length.

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    When I made the tabs, I started with some 1/4" steel, traced the shapes on them, then drilled out the holes before cutting the tabs. That was a helpful tip from Eric. Then I cut out rough shapes of the tabs, bolted them together then ground them evenly.

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    Once that was done, with the help of Eric, I heated and bent the spring perches outward to make them parallel. Mounted the spring, bolted the axle in, and got to work on dropping the spindle arms.. I also had to cut off the front panhard bar mount for the reverse eye spring to fit up to the bone.

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    Lunch's almost over.. Part two of the front suspension after work. :)
     
    kiwijeff, RoadFarmer and Dan Hay like this.
  27. Tim
    Joined: Mar 2, 2001
    Posts: 12,830

    Tim
    Member
    from KCMO

    Those are some good tricks, thanks! My split wishbone and grand mounts are all on one plate also, though I didn't have to change anything with the pan hard bar to get the reverse spring on.

    But every car is different once you get into it, even if they are supposed to be the same lol
     
  28. This brings back memories. I went with the same setup, for the 40. I bought some wishbones that were already split not knowing they needed to be to run a narrowed axle. (Lucky). I went up to OKC one weekend and Roothawg and I mocked up the front end on a fab table, clamped it down and heated and bent the perches on mine. It was a little more work but when I first put a fender on and saw the stance, and turning clearance, it was all worth it.
     

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