Register now to get rid of these ads!

Projects T-V8 Build Thread

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by Late to the Party, Mar 8, 2016.

  1. OK, I couldn't wait until tomorrow. I went to my shop and checked those things and took a couple more pics.
    Tranny pics 2 001.JPG
    There is a small set screw on this side of the shifter, but none on the other side. This side is for the 2nd-3rd gear shifter fork. But both of the fork rods do have detents in them.
    Tranny pics 2 002.JPG
    The larger fork measures 2-7/8" inside, but it doesn't have the 91A number or any number on it. And the tower doesn't have the 81A (or any number) cast into it. So is this an earlier shifter? Do I need to find the correct one?
     
  2. ClarkH
    Joined: Jul 21, 2010
    Posts: 1,091

    ClarkH
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    OK, you have a single detent tower, which I think should work provided you have the correct fork. The forks are reproduced, so that might be what you have. BUT your 2 7/8" measurement concerns me. The correct fork is just a hair under 3". Check out this thread: https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/39-ford-tranny.830469/

    Per post #10: "Pull the top and measure the big fork. If it's 3", you've got the 91A fork and later synchro. If it's 2 7/8", you don't." Maybe this explains why your fork shows signs of being ground on? To make it work?

    Sorry, man, I'm really not much help here. Could be barking up the wrong tree. Throw it out to the board for better advice.
     
    loudbang likes this.
  3. Clark -- You have been a great help, and I appreciate it. Per your advice, I have begun a new thread about this at: https://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/i-need-help-with-a-39-tranny.1125758/ which gives a link to this one.

    Apparently this shifter tower didn't have the correct fork, so that one was modified to make it work. I suspect that it began life as a 2-3/4" one, which was then ground or filed out to make it the current 2-7/8" size. It seems to work, even though it's not the actual correct size of 2-15/16".

    Maybe the position of the fork was changed with the change to the later type of tower? That could explain why 2nd gear isn't engaging fully. (Just grasping at straws here.)
     
    Atwater Mike likes this.
  4. ClarkH
    Joined: Jul 21, 2010
    Posts: 1,091

    ClarkH
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

  5. F-ONE
    Joined: Mar 27, 2008
    Posts: 2,828

    F-ONE
    Member
    from Alabama

    Very neat car!
    Mac Van Pelt is the expert on these. He is a member here. Maybe you can contact him.

    I run the 1950 F1 version of this design. I'm sure you know this but 1st is unsynchronized. You should be able to go up 1-2-3 and down 3-2 but you have to be at a stop to go down from 2-1.
    If I understand correctly, you cant get out of 1st or go 1-2 with out stopping.

    I wonder if the hydro clutch is fully engaged?
    These used the twist clutch linkage as you know. The hydro clutch should accomplish the same thing but I wonder if it's not quite right?
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  6. Mart
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,441

    Mart
    Member

    Try and verify if the fork is in the right position fore and aft.
    With the cover removed, and the front sleeve in the neutral position, take a measurement from the front of the housing (or a line scribed between the two front bolt holes) and the middle or front face of the groove in the sleeve. then engage it into 3rd (slide it forward onto the first motion shaft) and get the measurement. now do the same with it slid all the way back into 2nd position, and get the dimension.

    Then take the lid and using the same datum point (a line between the bolt holes for instance), take the corresponding three dimensions from the shifter assembly. Neutral, forward into 3rd and back into 2nd.

    See if the dimensions match up.

    You might be 1/4" off in the same direction on all 3 dimensions.
    That would mean the rails have the detents in the right place but the fork is wrong and needs further modification.

    You might be 1/4" off on the middle one, but a different dimension off on the other two. That would mean the rails are wrong and the fork is wrong.

    You might be bang on the money in neutral but off on the other two. that means the fork is right but thy detents in the rails are wrong.

    You have the parts in front of you, with the info above you should be able to tell us what is wrong.

    Mart.
     
  7. 97
    Joined: May 18, 2005
    Posts: 1,913

    97
    Member

    39 boxes were made with both gear sets and both shifter tops, deluxe and Mercury got the doubble detent wheresas standard and pickup got the 36-39 gearbox, the shift tops are not interchangeable...YOU can modify the shifter fork on the early one to fit width wise but it will NOT shift the gears correctly. As well as being wider the later fork is also offset to match the synchro sleeve which has its groove for the fork further to the rear.
    The shifter will NOT come out of the first and reverse selector when it is running because the two slots for the shift lever are not lined up .....You need the correct selector fork or best of all a whole double detent 39 deluxe shifter tower.
     
  8. 97
    Joined: May 18, 2005
    Posts: 1,913

    97
    Member

  9. Thanks for your help, Guys. I have learned a lot here, and I have plenty of things to check while I'm looking for the correct shifter tower. Some local guys are into F-1 pickups and Flatties in general, so I should be able to find one here. I'll be sure to report back.

    It just occurred to me that here I am in Arkansas, trying to troubleshoot an old '39 Ford transmission, and I'm getting help from England and New Zealand. It's an amazing world we live in!
     
    alanp561, brEad, loudbang and 4 others like this.
  10. Well, the first 3 guys I thought might have one of the 81A towers didn't have one. I found one on the 4th try, but it's not in very good condition overall. The tower has 81A cast into it, and the fork is the 3" wide one with the part number 91A-7230. He had lots of the ones like I have, and two nice 81A ones on complete transmissions (which he wouldn't separate, of course), and this crummy one which I bought from him. The good news is that the fork itself is in great shape, so I'm gonna' try to use it in my earlier shifter.

    Comparing the two, it appears that the difference is in the actual forks, while everything else looks to be the same. The fork rods in the 81A tower are badly pitted and frozen to the tower, while my rods are in good shape and they appear to be the same length with the detents in the same locations, and the rivet hole for the fork is in the same place. The forks themselves are different shapes, which would account for the existing fork in mine not sliding the gear all the way into second. Here are some comparison pics. Here's my existing fork:
    Hot Rod Tranny 3 002.JPG
    And here is the 91A fork. You can see that it has less of a "belly" than mine.
    Hot Rod Tranny 3 003.JPG
    Due to the shape difference, you can see that the 91A fork is positioned about 3/16" or 1/4" farther back in the tranny, which would move the 2nd gear farther into position.
    Hot Rod Tranny 3 001.JPG
    And measuring from the center of the rivet hole to the face of the fork, there is about 1/4" of difference. I'm soaking the pitted one in penetrant overnight, and I'll try to free it tomorrow. If that doesn't free it, I can cut the fork rod to get it out, since the rod is toast anyway.

    So that's my plan as of this point, unless someone knows that it won't work. It seems to me that it will, but if someone has tried this and it won't work, I'd like to benefit from your experience. Thanks again for everyone's help.
     
    ClarkH likes this.
  11. Will Kimble
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 400

    Will Kimble
    Member

    Does your new 81A tower shift correctly? If so, just pop the whole thing on and give it a try. The same shift levers work. You can put the 91A fork into your single detent tower, but since you have the whole 81A tower you may as well keep it together since it has the better "double detent" setup.

    Sorry, just saw the the shifter shafts are rusted frozen...
     
  12. Mart
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,441

    Mart
    Member

    Try and use the later tower complete , if you can clean the rods sufficiently. The reason I suggested measuring the throws is because the detents might be different in the rods in your tower and the later one. you might be able to compare the throws in and out of the gear positions between the two towers as you have them side by side.

    See if you can get a better later tower with the wrong fork, and swap your good fork from the ho-hum tower into it. That might be a better way to go.

    Or, like I said, clean up the one you have. The twin detents is a desirable feature.

    Mart.
     
  13. Thanks for the advice, Will & Mart. I had hoped to find a nice 81A tower which I could just bolt on and go. So far, I haven't been that fortunate. I have pretty much exhausted my local sources in looking for one, but I have another 1 or 2 guys to call. I'll try to free up the rusty tower to see whether it will work, but I have the nice earlier one to fall back on if I just swap the 2-3 fork. I think that will work, but I'll know more about that when I get all the parts separated so I can compare them to each other. Maybe I'll be able to use the 81A tower and fork with my good rods. I'll know more when I get it all apart.

    I appreciate everyone's advice and info during this process. I have learned a lot, thanks to you. I'll report back when I have any new developments.
     
  14. Will Kimble
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 400

    Will Kimble
    Member

    You can use the 3" fork in the single detent tower, that will work fine with no other changes. You can't swap the shifter shafts around, they have to stay with the tower they are in. The shafts for the double detent tower have the 3 notches facing outward and a single notch toward the middle where the solid "bullet" goes. The shafts for the single detent have the 3 notches toward the middle and no other notch.
     
    brad2v likes this.
  15. Thanks for that info, Will. I learned that today after I took both towers apart and compared their innards.

    I was able to un-freeze the 81A assembly by using the "hot wrench." Since my day job is restoring/repairing Model T Fords, I use the hot wrench a lot. Here is a pic of the nasty, rusty 81A all apart, with the tower bead-blasted. (My other tower and its parts are in the background.)
    H.R. Tranny 4 001.JPG
    Here are all its other parts cleaned up with a wire brush.
    H.R. Tranny 4 004.JPG
    One of the springs was in several pieces, so I made another one similar. The fork rods look bad because they are severely pitted, but I don't think that will hurt anything in the way it works. (In the Model T world, we call those "oil pockets." :) ) Here's the tower with a coat of paint, and everything ready to go back together. Good as new!
    H.R. Tranny 4 005.JPG
    Everything went back together just fine, and it works pretty slick. H.R. Tranny 4 006.JPG
    I have the car on jack stands so the rear tires are off the floor. That's how I've been doing my "test drives." So I put the rebuilt 81A tower in the car, and it works great! What a relief!

    So it turns out that you guys were correct in your assessment of my situation. I had the wrong shift tower, and I needed the 81A tower to make it right. The way it works now is slicker'n ya wanna be, and I owe it all to you guys. I couldn't have done this without your help. Thanks for giving me the benefit of your experience. I'll be away tomorrow, but I fully expect to take her for a very pleasant drive (the first of many) on Friday. :D
     
    Nailhead A-V8, Jet96, brad2v and 4 others like this.
  16. Will Kimble
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 400

    Will Kimble
    Member

    Looks great and great news! Might want to call Mac VanPelt and get some new springs for the detents, not much money and easy to switch out at this point after all the work you have done.
     
  17. Mart
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 4,441

    Mart
    Member

    "Oil pockets" - love it.

    Glad we wee able to help.

    Mart.
     
    brad2v and Late to the Party like this.
  18. Frank02L
    Joined: Jul 17, 2008
    Posts: 42

    Frank02L
    Member
    from Searcy, AR

    Great to see a complete build thread like this one. Semi-local even. Awesome car!
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  19. Thanks, Frank -- Whenever you're in Fayetteville, stop by and kick some tires.
     
  20. Frank02L
    Joined: Jul 17, 2008
    Posts: 42

    Frank02L
    Member
    from Searcy, AR

    We were up there weekend after a Christmas for basketball game with kids. We’ll be up for baseball soon.
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  21. Well, Folks, tonight I am a VERY happy camper. I have been stymied by strange things going on with my clutch for a year or more. I'd think I had it figured out, then take it for a test drive and it would fuck up again. It certainly gets depressing when you think you have a problem figured out and it turns out that you didn't. It's very discouraging, and that scenario has been happening over and over with this car for longer than I care to remember. It would keep me from wanting to touch the car for months at a time. Fortunately, I have friends who know a lot more about some of these things than I do, and they're willing to help me. I had zero experience in dealing with hydraulic clutches before this car, but I know someone who has lots of experience with them. He has been coaching me through this, suggesting things to try. His latest suggestion was something I hadn't thought of; namely, a clutch pedal stop. He said that sometimes you need to install a stop on the floor to limit the clutch pedal's travel. So I did that, and that was the answer! I drove the car all afternoon. Went to the car wash, then to a friend's place to talk about upholstery, then to JD's house (remember him?) to give him the first ride. JD had to have the first ride in this car. I drove probably 40 or 50 miles in all, mostly around town so there was lots of shifting and clutching going on. I've been bit so many times that I'm afraid to be too confident, but I really feel that the excess clutch pedal travel was what was causing the trouble. WHEW!

    Did I mention I'm a happy camper? Most of you can remember that first successful drive in a car you built from the ground up, so you know how I feel tonight. I just checked at the top of this thread, and I started it just short of 3 years ago. And I actually started working on the car about 9 years before that, then put it out back of my shop when I came into a project that seemed more important at the time. That's a long time to wait for that first successful drive.

    So here is a pic of my (mis)matched set of '21 Roadsters. I've waited a long time to get this pic, but I wasn't going to take it until I was confident that the Hot Rod was a driver, for real. (The other one has been a dependable driver for years.)

    (Mis)Matched Pair of 21's 002.JPG

    I drove so long this afternoon that by the time I got back to my shop the sun was getting low and the lighting sucks, but I just had to share my excitement. I'll get some better pics when conditions are better. I believe I'll tip a cold one to celebrate! :)
     
  22. Great news! Sometimes it takes a second pair of eyes looking at a problem to "see" what is wrong. I have been there too.
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  23. Congrats!



    Keep ‘em kruzin!

    Dannerr
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  24. brad2v
    Joined: Jun 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,648

    brad2v
    Member

    That's terrific! I know the feeling all too well. Glad you got it sorted, that's a great looking hot rod.
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  25. Mike, just found your thread - it was a great read! I really like how your car came out. Congrats on a successfully built traditional T!
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  26. Thanks, brEad and the rest of you. I've been tweaking some minor issues which appeared on the first successful drive, and the car is ready to go again. The weather has been nasty since that last post, but we're supposed to get a nice day or two very soon, so I'll try to get a better pic of the two 21's. During this downtime, I've been making poster board patterns to take to the upholstery guy, so maybe the interior will happen before long. :)
     
    brad2v, sidevalve8ba and Dannerr like this.
  27. OK, here's the better pic I promised. I know you've all been waiting with bated breath..........

    '21's 003.JPG
    The bits of gray, white, and green you see in the Hot Rod's interior are pieces of foam rubber which will be backing for the interior panels. I've used poster board to make patterns for all the pieces, so I can take those to the upholstery guy and have him do his magic, then I'll install the stitched-up sections. The seat back will be a continuous section of rolls and pleats from the rear edge of the door on the right side, around the seat back and all the way to the firewall on the left side. I've decided on black rolls and pleats (real ones, like they used to do), rather than red or oxblood. I think the black will go with the time slot the car's built to. Doing it in red just seemed like too much red to me. I like the splash of red on the wheels and engine, but the whole red interior seemed a bit over the top.

    BTW, it certainly is a thrill every time to be able to get in it and start it up and drive it. Everything is now working as it should. :D
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2019
    Vic Walter, brad2v, OFT and 5 others like this.
  28. atch
    Joined: Sep 3, 2002
    Posts: 4,798

    atch
    Member

    Congrats!

    I've been following along the entire 3 years, but have never commented. Ya done good, son.
     
    Late to the Party likes this.
  29. Thanks a bunch, Atch.
     
  30. I had my friend who is a professional welder come to my shop yesterday to install a trailer hitch on my car.

    Hot Rod Trailer Hitch 002.JPG

    He used a Class I receiver, which will be plenty strong for anything I'll pull behind my hot Rod. It is welded to the framework of the body, as well as the rear crossmember of the frame. I have the use of a 1947 Kit Kamper trailer which I rebuilt for a friend, and I'm considering pulling it to the LSRU in April. I haven't driven my car any distance from home yet, so it'll be quite an adventure! I'll need to put some more miles on it between now and then, to gain a bit more confidence that the car will make it that far and get me home. Since I built my car as a post-war type of build, the '47 Kit should look about right behind it. :D
     

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2021 The Jalopy Journal: Steal our stuff, we'll kick your teeth in. Terms of Service. Privacy Policy.

Atomic Industry
Forum software by XenForo™ ©2010-2014 XenForo Ltd.