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History Scrapyard find; 1929 Chevy roadster with Sears conversion.

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by F&J, May 12, 2016.

  1. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    I've had a odd illness for over a week; some days could not walk or move my arms. Yesterday I felt good enough to drive to the scrapyard/metal recycle place for some fab steel.

    Well, 4 weeks ago when I went there with my son, we saw this 29 Chevy, but they said it was sold....my son was happy because he said that I have no use for it anyways :)

    Yesterday it was moved back into the "for sale" area, and the owner said "sleep on it". I did, and went to get it today. LOL

    I don't know if it is a Sears kit or Montgomery Wards, or another brand, but it is quite unusual to see a kit made for the Chevys. Most all survivors are Ford A and T. These kits had special gear hubs to fit the stock car rear axles, to drive the 41" big gear. The rear wheels are 4.5 feet

    Not sure what I will do with it, but I also have an old 50s channeled 30 Chevy roadster pickup, so I don't think I'd try to put it back to a roadster or roadster pickup unless I got very lucky to find a rear body and doors.

    The motor is not stuck, but the yard scrapped the generator and starter for the copper :(
    Does anyone know how many years of starters would fit the 29 motor?
    DSCN0566.JPG DSCN0570.JPG DSCN0567.JPG dscn0563.jpg DSCN0568.JPG dscn0562.jpg
     
    rmcroadster, brad2v, bct and 5 others like this.
  2. patmanta
    Joined: May 10, 2011
    Posts: 3,686

    patmanta
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Woburn, MA
    1. MASSACHUSETTS HAMB

    I'd get it running, sturdy, and back to tilling!

    EVERY MAN NEEDS A TRACTOR!

    I'll never understand why scrappers will take something RUNNING and make it NOT RUN all just for FOUR DOLLARS WORTH OF COPPER.
     
  3. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 6,924

    seb fontana
    Member
    from ct

    Rear end must be flipped upside down in order to go forwards, Yes?
     
    Pocket Nick, Hnstray and gas pumper like this.
  4. oldolds
    Joined: Oct 18, 2010
    Posts: 3,140

    oldolds
    Member

    My new Hemming mag has an article about all Chevy starters and the interchange. 29-34 Standard six is what it states.
     
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  5. patmanta
    Joined: May 10, 2011
    Posts: 3,686

    patmanta
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    from Woburn, MA
    1. MASSACHUSETTS HAMB

    I believe so. As I recall that's how they did it on the Model A conversion that was similar to this that I saw a couple years ago.
     
  6. Thaplumbr
    Joined: May 7, 2012
    Posts: 119

    Thaplumbr
    Member

    Man that is cool!!!
     
  7. tfeverfred
    Joined: Nov 11, 2006
    Posts: 15,792

    tfeverfred
    Member

    Car guys are a strange breed.
     
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  8. tractorguy
    Joined: Jan 5, 2008
    Posts: 687

    tractorguy
    Member

    That is a great find. Very unusual to find a Chev based tractor or doodlebuy versus the more common Ford Model T or Model A. I know Thieman did conversions also, but I think you are on the right track with Sears or Montgomery Ward. You may also want to post a picture on www.yesterdaystractor.com. Lots of good folks on there.

    By the way......nice rare traditional hauler hooked to the trailer......long narrow box 4WD.
     
  9. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,535

    Atwater Mike
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I love early Chevy frames...
     
    bct and kidcampbell71 like this.
  10. That is pretty neat, nice piece of historical inginuity.
     
  11. Raiman1959
    Joined: May 2, 2014
    Posts: 1,427

    Raiman1959

    I think it is awesome!!!....I could sing ''green acres'' theme song while tilling the garden and actually feel pretty good belting it out:D:D:D...it's cool!!!
     
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  12. 302GMC
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 6,737

    302GMC
    Member
    from Idaho

    '32 & later downdraft intake & exhaust manifolds will fit so you don't have to deal with the updraft. I'd pull the pan & check the rods & mains for acid etch.
     
  13. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    Patmanta; I spoke too soon. I now see the boltholes for the starter have not had a bolt in them for years, so the starter maybe was taken off for storage by the old duffer. He must have oiled the valves once in a while, because it is wet with oil, and plugs are finger tight, so he oiled them too. The carb was likely put in a shed, because there is an old oily rag in the manifold hole. So, the only part cut off at the yard, was the generator



    Thanks for the interchange, I am sure I will find one local, now that I know which ones fit. The motor has a casting date of March 1929, so I know it's ID



    Tractorguy; take a look at two casted parts with MW part numbers. One is the big gear, and other is on the inner big wheel hub. I suppose other casting companies could use MW, or is it a good sign that this is Montgomery Ward kit?
    DSCN0571.JPG DSCN0572.JPG


    Speaking of ingenuity, that large added rear frame pivots on the axle of the big wheels....like a teeter totter. The back of that frame is the drawbar for attachments. When you need to lower or raise that drawbar, you reach over to the tall handle, pull the release trigger, then either use first or reverse gear, which makes the drawbar "power up, or power down" as the small gears climb up or down on the big gear! I think that is very clever, as that tall handle is not in a great place to try to muscle the lever by hand.

    Last pic shows the only rusted stuck thing on the moving parts. This is the shift tower, and I did get the rails freed up today. The rails slide in that tin box. The trans gears all look good and the sliding gears are not stuck.
    DSCN0573.JPG


    So, I should have it running/driving in a day or two. I will use an ancient huge 1/2" drill motor to spin the crankshaft, where the hand crank fits. I've done that before with decent luck

    .
     
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  14. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    Well, I think I have a nice Model A carb here, so I'll try that one. On the pan, yes I already was thinking how bad the sludge might be. The worst one I've seen was a 1920 Reo last run in early 50s, and it was honestly like peanut butter consistency. I did just check the Chevy dip stick, it is normal blackened oil at the full mark, and is not stiff or gummy. I may just drop the drain plug, and fish around in there with a wire looking for solids.

    .
     
  15. tractorguy
    Joined: Jan 5, 2008
    Posts: 687

    tractorguy
    Member

    I would say the MW would be a good sign of the Montgomery Wards heritage, but I have never seen anything like yours, so I would not hazard a guess......keep digging
     
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  16. tractorguy
    Joined: Jan 5, 2008
    Posts: 687

    tractorguy
    Member

    Update.......I just did a search of Montgomery Ward tractor conversion and lots of stuff comes up with some good pictures (seemingly all Ford conversions)........including a very similair picture of the "MW" cast into the large gear on the rear wheels. It shows :MW217" just like yours has "MW54"
     
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  17. bubba55
    Joined: Feb 27, 2011
    Posts: 353

    bubba55
    Member

    me likie - nice find ! - please keep us posted
     
  18. indyjps
    Joined: Feb 21, 2007
    Posts: 4,130

    indyjps
    Member

  19. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 14,932

    Squablow
    Member

    Looks like a legit roadster cowl on it.
     
  20. Frank, i will look to see what parts i have for that. i am looking for one of those engine side covers for mine.
    i drove a 30's dodge with one of those conversions, in the field rode like a dream, but on the stone driveway with the tractor spring seat you needed to hold on to keep from being thrown off.
     
  21. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    Yes, it was a roadster or touring but not a roadster pickup because those did not have the chromed radiator shell.
    Ted, I just got off the phone with an older guy who knows where this tractor was for about the last 50 years, he guesses. The guy never had it running, but was "looking" for a starter...for decades. :)

    My friend has "several parts motors" also has chrome headlights and bar from a 29 doodlebug chevy, and says he will look for a starter in his stash. He thinks he has a radiator, but I know he does because I saw one there a few years ago. Chevy radiators all have a dated tag on the tank, is why I know. He has the correct carb, too.

    He is an early Dodge nut, and he just told me that there was also a Dodge kit made by the same companies

    .
     
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  22. That's neat! I have a downdraft intake/carb/exhaust man if you want me to dig it out. It's in pretty good shape as I recall.
     
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  23. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    I will turn this thread into a "how to start a barn find" to keep it hamb friendlier. I do this kind of work for a few people who want a barn car to be able to run and move, so they can sell their cars easier.

    There are usually other "sticking points" besides just getting them to run; you sometimes have stuck clutches, brakes, whatever, but you normally want to get it running first.

    My old friend is looking in his stuff for a starter today, so I went to "thumb test" the compression by turning the front crank hub with big channel-locks. I had Zero on all 6 holes. All the valves had lash and all are moving, so I knew it needed to spin awhile with oil in the cylinders.....that always helps bigtime.

    So, I found a piece of 5/8" hot rolled bar, turned it down to 1/2" on the lathe, drilled a hole for a piece of 3/8" grade 8 bolt....and chucked it into my Dad's old Thor 1/2" drill. He had a shop in the 50's so it must be pretty old.

    I spun it a bit, but still had zeros, so I used a blend of ATF.Acetone, and used motor oil in each hole.
    DSCN0574.JPG

    Well, after spinning it a few times for 30 seconds each, I had to get creative to hold the drill and still be able to reach all 6 holes for another thumb test for compression. I have compression on all except number one. I don't bother with a gauge test, because you can tell if there is enough compression on each, to be able to fire.

    If you have a lot of dead holes at this point, it can help to do a smack with a rubber hammer on each valve to let it snap back hard against the seat....to knock rusticles off. At TDC, or just have one valve down all the way and smack the other one on that cylinder.

    Time to either clean points and fix plug wires, or find a small carb. The carb most likely will be a lawnmower carb for now.

    But after cranking up the compression,.... look what was pulled up by the flywheel teeth. I got a good hint that the clutch disc will be stuck .LOL
    DSCN0575.JPG
     
  24. edwardlloyd
    Joined: Aug 2, 2003
    Posts: 2,067

    edwardlloyd
    Member
    from Germany

    Love that thing. I'd restore it as it is. It's not like it's a '32 Ford roadster.
    Ed
     
  25. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,960

    The37Kid
    Member

    Great find, hope to see at the Kent show in September, unless it winds up in New Milford with Ted. It must have had fairly good storage all these years, not a lot of rust. Bob
     
  26. gas pumper
    Joined: Aug 13, 2007
    Posts: 2,955

    gas pumper
    Member

    What makes you think the starter flange is not the same as the later 6 (up to 54)? and if that's the case, how long has the 6 volt starter gear on the flywheel been in use? there really might be interchangeability here.
     
  27. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 27,960

    The37Kid
    Member

    Frank, Are these parts unique to Chevy or are the same conversion parts used on the Ford chassis? Poked around on the web and found this MW number on a rear wheel. Bob

    upload_2016-5-13_16-50-33.png
     
  28. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,223

    F&J
    Member

    According to my elderly friend, he says this sat outdoors in Vernon, as yard art for "at least 50 years". I have another friend who lives 2 houses away from a cousin of that owner, about 5 minutes from here... So I will ask the cousin just how long the uncle had it outside. I knew it looked odd when I saw it the first time at the scrapyard, because it looked like someone painted it green and ivory a decade or two ago. That helped save it.

    One member posted on here, says Hemmings just printed the interchange from 29 to 34. My old time friend did not dispute that when I asked if it sounded correct. My friend has worked on all the old cars and trucks, and seems to know a lot. I do hope you are right, if he can't find the 29-34 at his place. I know he'd have those later ones.

    "tractorguy" posted that he also found some pics like that on a Ford. You would think that the big wheel and big gear would be used for Chevy, Ford and Dodge, to save manufacturing costs? The small gear would definitely be different on all three kits. At this point, we don't know if that MW means Montgomery Ward or if it's a coincidence, but seems likely it is Wards

    I thought I read years ago, that they offered tractor style all-steel front wheels for these kits; maybe optional?

    And lastly, this Chevy has a "lift kit" on the front springs. I don't know for sure, but the pieces might be factory kit parts. It would sit way too low in front without a lift kit
    .
     

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