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Projects Shade tree Model A speedster kind of thing

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by rwrj, Nov 21, 2017.

  1. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Thank you all. I got my test drive taken care of this morning. Man, what a difference that windshield makes. I'm sold, don't care what it looks like (well, not really, but I can sure live with the way it looks). I can hear the old engine, tire noise, other cars...all I need is a radio. Nah, just kidding, but it makes the car so much more comfortable at highway speeds. I broke GA law slightly my holding my phone while driving and made a couple of quick videos for comparison. They don't really convey the difference between glass up and glass down, but it gives you an idea. My speedometer reads about 10% slow, because of those tall rear tires, so I was averaging 50-55 mph. I still have to buy some blades for the wipers, but I think, as Fabber said, that I could keep going in the rain, if I had to. Anyway, here you go.

    Down:



    Up:



    Like I said, the difference is much more dramatic in person. I'm really tickled with it.
     
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  2. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,951

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    Noticed the crows having lunch. There was a news item the other day that because of reduced traffic due to the health situation, there is lessr kill. To the point that crows, turkey buzzards and other carrion eaters are having a tough time. Folks are throwing out less stuff so dumpster divers like rats and raccoons etc are also finding slim pickings. And the rats in NY subway tunnels are looking for new digs.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  3. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Those actually were Turkey Buzzards. They did seem more reluctant to leave that carcass than normal, now that you mention it.
     
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  4. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    You'll enjoy this story more if you go through the media in order and don't jump around. Daughter #2 (United States Naval Academy class of 2020, a little Dad bragging there) and I went for a drive this afternoon. Cruising along around 55, windshield up, beautiful day. She took a little video:



    Sorry for the vertical orientation, this wasn't really supposed to be for Youtube. Anyway, we got turned around and headed back after about 10 miles or so, and she (the car) sputters and dies. Coasted to the side of the road, started investigating, and found this:

    IMG-7674.jpg

    IMG-7675 (1).jpg

    That ain't good. I guess my brazing skills need more development. In reality, I think the problem lies in trying to join steel and cast iron. I need to make new bases for the manifold out of steel. Be that as it may, I was still stuck on the side of the road with my daughter and two carburetors that were no longer hooked to the enigne. What to do?

    IMG-7680.jpg

    IMG-7679.jpg

    Hahahahaaa. That's my little test wire with the alligator clips yanked off. Fortunately, I had left about 1/4" of the cast iron manifold pipes sticking up inside the new pipes, so they had a little shelf to perch on. Worked well enough for us to limp back home. Just idled along in 3rd, about 35 mph. It was obvioulsy very lean, and I didn't want to overheat it. Got home safely without needing to catch a ride. I hate having to get rescued.



    All’s well that ends well.
     
    Jet96, 30tudor, dwollam and 8 others like this.
  5. pumpman
    Joined: Dec 6, 2010
    Posts: 2,641

    pumpman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Stuff always happens. I always said to break down it was better to have the nose pointing home. At least you’re headed in the right direction.
     
    Stogy likes this.
  6. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 16,392

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Yes, that was a very fortunate outcome...just some bugage to Iron Out...glad your both okay...
     
  7. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,951

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    Congratulations to your daughter! You too! Gotta be proud!
     
  8. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Thank you, plym. I am proud. Got a son graduating from UGA this year, too. Plus two more past UGA grads, and my youngest finishing her freshman year there on a full scholarship. They have a good Mamma.

    Enough bragging, though. I ended up re-brazing my manifold back the way it was, instead of making new bases for it. I didn't have any steel thick enough. Hopefully, I'm at least learning though. By looking at how it broke, I could tell that I hadn't gotten the cast iron hot enough when I first made it, and had just essentially built thin rings of brass that were bonded to the steel pipes, but just kind of clamping the cast iron bases. I don't have a picture of it, but I was real careful this time to keep the flame on the cast, melt the brazing rod onto that, and then walking it up to the steel. I also piled it on pretty deep, and didn't try to pretty it up with any grinding or sanding. I feel like it will be strong enough. Knock on wood. Some of you might remember I fixed a broken ear on the old intake by brazing it. That was cast iron, and it was still holding when I took it off. Knock again. I also replaced that stupid hacksaw blade that was connecting the chokes on the carbs with a little bronze rod I flattened the ends of with a hammer. It's pretty farm-boy, but still better than that hacksaw blade. That thing just looked like hell. I also had to fit and braze another cap on the end of the front exhaust pipe, right under the manifold, facing the block. Running home lean like I was with the carbs wired onto the motor, I had a couple of truly epic backfires, and I guess one of them blew the old cap off. My life with this thing is an adventure. Hahaha. Be that as it may, she's up and running again.

    IMG-1050.jpg

    IMG-1048.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2020
    brEad, Shadow Creek, dwollam and 4 others like this.
  9. flatford39
    Joined: Dec 3, 2006
    Posts: 2,557

    flatford39
    Member

    Glad you got rid of the hacksaw blade....it was truly a RR eyesore and didn't belong on your build.
     
  10. Inked Monkey
    Joined: Apr 19, 2011
    Posts: 1,775

    Inked Monkey
    Member

    I love that you can just wire the manifold back on and continue home! Try that with a newer car
     
    Stogy likes this.
  11. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Exactly. I think I'm going to make a rule for myself. Don't drive a car unless, when I open the hood, I can look down and see the ground under the engine. Back in the day pliers, a Crescent wrench, a couple of screwdrivers, and a coat hanger was an emergency repair kit. Come to think of it, that's pretty much what I carry in this thing. Needed the coat hanger the other day, though. I could have used it to wire the intake directly to the exhaust manifolds. Hahahahaa
     
  12. 282doorUK
    Joined: Mar 6, 2015
    Posts: 51

    282doorUK

    You've managed to build a car with a real friendly look to it, like it wouldn't do anyone any harm or embarrassed them on purpose, getting you home with the carbs wired on is just one example of this.

    Thanks for the write up, I've really enjoyed it.
     
  13. lake_harley
    Joined: Jun 4, 2017
    Posts: 946

    lake_harley
    Member

    rwrj....You have to be one of the most ingenious and innovative people here on the HAMB. I really enjoy seeing how you make things work. What's next....air conditioning built from an old Maytag washer? BTW...that's actually a compliment, not an insult!

    Lynn

    FWIW....I used packing tape to hold the carburetor on an old Briggs & Stratton engine on a push mower years ago. Come to think of it, I think I finished that year's mowing season with it still just taped on. :D
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2020
    guitarguy likes this.
  14. Dedsoto
    Joined: Jan 7, 2014
    Posts: 49

    Dedsoto
    Member
    from Australia
    1. Aussie HAMBers

    my fix involved a couple of radiator hoses, still good for 75mph
    20190915_110029.jpg 20190915_132515.jpg
     
    Okie Pete, OzT, brEad and 5 others like this.
  15. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Dang, you guys with the compliments... Thank you.

    No worries, Lake. I took it as a compliment, even before the explanation.

    Dedsoto,
    I like everything I see about your car. I just think it has the right attitude. Radiator hose would have come in handy for me. No way I was going 75 with my fix. Just happy to poot back home.
     
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  16. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Well, this aint much, but...
    One of the side effects of taking my kids for rides in this, and riding with them, is that we have discovered a pretty pressing need for an "oh shit" handle for the passenger. Since that seat is set back, you can throw your left arm behind the driver, but it still feels pretty precarious at times. I never thought about it, the steering wheel gives me a great sense of security (relatively speaking), but the passenger is just kind of perched over there clenching. I set out to rectify that with some 3/8" bronze rod. I made a rough pattern with some soft aluminum wire and cut the bronze to length. Turned the ends down a bit and threaded them for 5/16" x 24, (the threads are short in the first picture because I just started them, then ran out to see how long they needed to be). Then, I did some heating and bending. Looks like I messed it up because the ends are at different levels, but if you look at the installed pictures you'll see that I have that extra bit of wood reinforcement under the dash, so I had to stagger them. I also made that wooden grip, drilled it, then split it and stuck it back together with glue and some copper wire wraps at the ends.

    IMG-1073.jpg

    IMG-1076.jpg

    IMG-1081 (1).jpg

    IMG-1082 (1).jpg

    IMG-1084 (1).jpg

    It's pretty sturdy. Those front washers fetch up against the little step I left when I turned the ends down, and I have washers and lock washers in the back, plus and extra pad of wood behind on the bottom leg so I'm not just going through that 3/8" frame piece. Each end has about a 3/4" bury in the wood. I'm sure, in an extreme situation, my passenger could do some damage, but I guess that could be true of any part of this old thing. At least now they can anchor themselves with each hand. It seems like it sticks out farther than it needs to, but you have to remember how the passenger seat is farther back. We mocked it up with my shortest kid so that it was easy for her to reach in a desperation grab. Hahaaa.
     
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  17. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,828

    rusty rocket
    Member

    Looks great! I find myself adding little things to my single seater, the last being a small wind/mud/debris shield in front of the steering wheel. I came to the conclusion that I need to start thinking about a new project (hmmm woody project?)before I keep adding things just for something to do. Not saying you are doing that, I think you really think about what goes on your car. Again looks great!
     
    Stogy likes this.
  18. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    Rusty,
    I'm at the stage where I really do give a lot of thought to adding stuff. I do not want it to get cluttered with useless, decorative crap. It's pretty busy already, and I don't think I've added anything that doesn't serve a practical (or legal) purpose. Even that dash clock. I had a passing fancy to try to enter the Great Race for a bit, until I researched it enough to find out what it cost. Ouch. By then, I'd already drilled the giant hole and installed it, so it stays. My litmus test is, as always, function first. I have a bunch of other hobbies, so I don't think I'm in danger of decorating it out of boredom, but I do agree with you. It's about time to think about the next (2nd) car like this. I have the little v8 60, and an extra Model a front end, and a couple of rusty Model T frames.... One of these days a cheap Model A banjo will show up, and I'll be off. Hahahaaa
     
    Last edited: May 19, 2020
    dwollam, brEad and Stogy like this.
  19. 340HilbornDuster
    Joined: Nov 14, 2011
    Posts: 1,907

    340HilbornDuster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Everything's absolutely PERFECT!
    upload_2020-5-18_12-39-31.png
    If someone DUG UP your Speedster today...They would be convinced it's a real ANTIQUE!
    I DIG IT!
     
    dwollam, brEad, Stogy and 1 other person like this.
  20. plym_46
    Joined: Sep 8, 2005
    Posts: 3,951

    plym_46
    Member
    from central NY

    Dedsoto,my fix involved a couple of radiator hoses, still good for 75mph

    Most modern intakes are some form of rubber or plastic these day, hell half the engine is some kind of plastic.
     
  21. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    This is funny to me (eventually, but you have to know the back story). I blew my one fuse on a little drive yesterday. That's not the funny part. At first, when the car sputtered and died, I thought I was out of gas and switched to my gravity fed reserve, but she wouldn't start back up, so I investigated. Didn't take long to realize it was the fuse. Replaced it and she fired right back up. I still don't know why it blew. I was braking pretty hard for a left turn, my theory is that I over extended the brake light switch (it's the old pull-rod type) and briefly grounded something inside of it. That's not the funny part, either. Here's the part that amused me. While I was knocking around under the hood trying to figure all of this out, the damn reserve tank starts overflowing. I shut it back off real quick, no harm done. Took me a bit of pondering to sleuth out what happened. Turns out, I hadn't remembered to reach back and crack the main tank's cap to relieve the air pressure in there, and it was pushing fuel from the main tank into the reserve. Something to keep in mind, for sure. Wouldn't have been an issue if I had actually been out of gas, it would have just bubbled air, but I'll have to remember not to switch it when there is fuel and pressure in the main tank. The cute thing is that I can fill the reserve tank from the main tank that way without having to pour any gas. Just pump up the system, open the reserve valve, watch through the neck as the gas level rises magically, and shut it back off when it's full. Hahahaaaa. Anyway, I don't see how anybody who's not intimately familiar with my fuel delivery system can possibly follow that, so here's a diagram:

    IMG-1100.jpg

    Don't bother reading this next part unless the mechanics of the thing interest you. Starting at the top is the air pump. The check valve keeps me from building up enough pressure to overpower the needles in the carbs. The fuel pressure gauge is next, teed off. The dotted line in the tank is a piece of brake line so I don't fill the air line with gas. Air pressure in the tank pushes fuel out of the bottom (I have a shut-off valve there), and up to a tee that connects to the valve below the reserve tank. When that valve is off, the reserve is blocked and fuel flows straight to the carbs. The valve is above the main fuel line (I didn't draw that part quite right), so when I open that valve, not only can fuel gravity feed from the reserve to the carbs, it could also run back into the main tank if I didn't have the main line looping above the reserve tank. That loop doesn't keep the pressure in the main tank from pushing fuel into the reserve tank, though. That seems kind of dangerous, but like I said earlier, it's only an issue if there is fuel in the main tank. Normally, I wouldn't open the reserve valve then. Of course, if that valve failed, I'd be in a fix, but there are so many things on this car that would put me in a fix if they failed that one more is just one more, I guess.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2020
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  22. 282doorUK
    Joined: Mar 6, 2015
    Posts: 51

    282doorUK

    Funny how sometimes unforeseen things work out well!

    I fitted a tank vent tap that I hope I'll get in the habit of opening whenever I stop the engine, wether I'll remember to do that if the engine stops for no reason, is another thing!

    983DFCFE-9158-4506-B1CF-BACDD7E10AF9_1_201_a.jpeg
     
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  23. 340HilbornDuster
    Joined: Nov 14, 2011
    Posts: 1,907

    340HilbornDuster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    282doorUK - I Dig Your 1928 Chevy beach racer type thingy...!
    Two different approaches, but both rwrj's and You're ride are great inspirations what can be done with old "Junk"!
    And Yes - Junk is a POSITIVE word!
     
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  24. 282doorUK
    Joined: Mar 6, 2015
    Posts: 51

    282doorUK

    Thanks for your kind words, seems to me whenever a spares pile contains enough parts, even if they're not very good parts, it's time to get building summat and see how it turns out..
     
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  25. rwrj
    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 627

    rwrj
    Member
    from SW Ga

    I've been fooling around with a head mount system for my little GoPro camera I got for free. This video starts about 8 miles into a 10 mile drive I took this morning. Damn camera mount looks so silly that I had to wait for a private spot to pull over and put it on, then ended up with an uncharacteristic amount of traffic at the end. Oh well, the best laid plans...

    I haven't really made any improvements to old Shade Tree since the "oh shit" handle, just doesn't seem to need anything else, and I don't want to froo-froo it up to the point of ridiculousness. I'm sure there will be plenty of maintenance and repairs, but that stuff doesn't really belong in a build thread, so I'll probably just let this fade into Hamb obscurity from here on out. I can't tell you guys how much I appreciate the attention, encouragement, advice, comments, and photo-shopping that I've gotten on here. This is a pretty special forum, for sure.

    Enough of that, though. Here's the video:

     
    ClarkH, dwollam, simplestone and 7 others like this.
  26. It's been a great ride!
    You are an inspiration for guys wanting to live the old days for real!
    Best of luck!
    Got something else in mind yet?

    Tony
     
  27. 340HilbornDuster
    Joined: Nov 14, 2011
    Posts: 1,907

    340HilbornDuster
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Thanks again for the Ride!...
    AND the thing FLIES!...(How's Your Mech. Brakes...?...Moose & Deer and stuff!)
    One of the Coolest Cars on here...Built from "Scratch"!
    “If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.”
    ― Carl Sagan, Cosmos
    Looks EVEN COOLER with the Windshield Down....Hmm Probably Faster too!
     
    Tony Martino likes this.
  28. I have really enjoyed following along as you created this from almost nothing. Looks like loads of fun!
     
    Tony Martino likes this.
  29. Very well done.
     
    Tony Martino likes this.
  30. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 3,828

    rusty rocket
    Member

    Love it. Had tons of fun watching as it came along. Keep us posted if you do anything else to the ole girl.
     
    RidgeRunner and Tony Martino like this.

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