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Projects The Elza Coupe - 26 T Gow Job build

Discussion in 'Traditional Hot Rods' started by rail job, Sep 28, 2014.

  1. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Hey guys,

    I've been a lurker here for sometime while I have been moving money, and toys around to start on a project I have had in my head for the last 30 or so years. To build what I see, as a Hot Rod..... Out of all the cars I have built, or taken part in over the years, I've always had more of heart for traditional Hot Rodding. It's what I grew up on, it was my environment and it transitioned into a career of sorts.

    Frankly, it couldn't come too soon. I was actually pretty close about 10 years ago then a divorce, and the closing of the speed shop I worked for started going under causing me to lose my parts collection.

    So.... On with the build, and a little back story leading to why this is my first project with a name.

    During the very early 80's when I was around 9 my family lived a block of 8 mile just into Hazel Park on a street named East Elza. We had a corner house, with nice big lot, and some stumps I used to jump on my bike. About half way down the block lived a guy in his 20's named Donnie who built cars, and by cars. I mean Hot Rods. Somehow, over the course time I befriended Donnie. For the next couple years until I moved away I could ride my bike down and hang out with him while never being turned away except once by his sister who thought I was too young...

    Anyways... Donnie built cool stuff, and besides my families interest although unable to afford toys until later in life is the primary person who got me into Hot Rods. He built them, his Dad built them, and his friends built them, and I still remember them quite well to this day.

    I typically don't name a car but given how long I have waited, and my intent, I think it fits.

    As I've been gathering ideas my original idea was to build a 27 Roadster late 50's early 60's style. After a bit more consideration, and hoping to drive the car more given Michigan weather I decided to build a Coupe for my first, what I consider true Hot Rod build.

    Two weeks ago while browsing the HAMB classifieds I saw a 26 Model T coupe not too far from me so I decided to take a look. The pictures were decent, the car had a bit of lore about it, and it looked like a good base although I was more interested in a Model A.

    After a quick conversation I drove out to meet the owner of the car. After a bit off looking, it's now mine and I am quite happy about it. It's also been great meeting a member here and getting back into the traditional scene. The whole experience has been quite refreshing and I can't wait to get started.

    Yesterday, I drove out to pick it up. Here are some pics once I brought home to start playing with it.


    The car appears to be almost all original and pretty solid. It is believed the car spent it's life on Harsons island, and was rumored to be owned by the Ford Family. I'm not even sure if that can be verified but hey, it's cool none the less. The car was built February of 1926, this would make black the correct color.

    Just off the trailer
    [​IMG]EC1 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC3 by kev066, on Flickr

    I believe the original interior should have been grey, although it is quite convincing.
    [​IMG]EC7 by kev066, on Flickr

    No evidence of patch panels so far through my inspection.
    [​IMG]EC2 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC5 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC6 by kev066, on Flickr

    Original patent plate.
    [​IMG]EC10 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC9 by kev066, on Flickr

    Spare is new.
    [​IMG]EC18 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC19 by kev066, on Flickr

    Pretty cool gas sticks.
    [​IMG]EC16 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC14 by kev066, on Flickr

    [​IMG]EC20 by kev066, on Flickr

    Today I spent a little time in the driveway wiping it down with some wax and grease remover to get a better feel for the body. It's had some touch up work done over the years. I'm kind of happy it appears to have had paint applied directly over the original paint.

    [​IMG]EC22 by kev066, on Flickr

    I have to give a little plausibility to the Harsons island lore given the sticker on the deck lid pertaining to water safety.

    So.... What are my plans... Honestly, I have a few concepts in my head but it will depend on what parts I can find. As of now I plan to build it, drive it, then maybe tear it down and painted it pretty. For now I plan to remove the touch up paint to see what's underneath.

    Some things I know for sure-

    No chop, I like it tall.
    A chassis cut to match the T
    Banger
    Original interior


    Just a simple, no frills prewar street car looking for trouble. I may even leave the tank in the cowl. If I had room I would keep the stock stuff I don't use to build a neat little speedster but I will probably sell or trade it off to help fund the build.

    So... I'm glad I can finally build this car, and hopefully take part in the HAMB. Progress will be slow as it gets cold here, and I collect parts but I think it's going to be a cool build.

    Hope you guys dig it.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2016
  2. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

  3. olskool34
    Joined: Jun 28, 2006
    Posts: 2,345

    olskool34
    Member

    Can't wait to see this build progress Kevin, I will be watching. It was a pleasure meeting you and hit me up for whatever parts you may need.
     
  4. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Good stuff, Jeff. I'll pass one of the gas sticks to you next time we cross paths.
     
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  5. CGkidd
    Joined: Mar 2, 2002
    Posts: 2,770

    CGkidd
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Damn thats clean. Keep if ford power
     
  6. kidcampbell71
    Joined: Sep 17, 2012
    Posts: 3,694

    kidcampbell71
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. 60s Show Rods

    Geez.....that thing sure is tidy, ain't' it ? Damn nice start. I'm usually the first on the tear it apart wagon.......but I have to admit to having a wee bit of a crush on it, as it sits. Ummm......did I just say that?
     
    AmishMike likes this.
  7. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Thanks man. I am leaning towards Ford power. Auto or manual is still up in the air.

    Tidy is a good word. I have to hot rod it a bit. What can I say, it's in my blood. I do like it tall though.
     
  8. Wow! Sweet T! Looking forward to this...
     
  9. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Thank you very much. Its starting to feel real now!

    In other news... I scored some parts this weekend I am very happy about.

    My goal before winter was to obtain the car, an engine, wheels. Given what I was able to find I have changed my mind and decided to date the build back to the 40's.

    Scored a 1938 or 1940 Passenger car Flat Head with trans. Cylinder heads are 81-A and I need to convert the trans to a floor shift case.

    [​IMG]


    Also got some pretty neat old headers with the deal to start on an exhaust and some other bits.
    [​IMG]

    Came with a radiator I might be able to use.
    [​IMG]

    And the last thing that made my day. 16x4 1935 wires sandblasted and primed..
    [​IMG]

    Quite a fulfilling week and a great start considering I picked up the car last Saturday. I'm really glad I decided to go 40's style rather than my original idea. After looking over the car the past week, and messing with the paint to see how much original I can uncover it feels right. Now I need to talk my girl into not parking in the garage during the winter so I can get more stuff done.
     
  10. You gonna put that v8 in a T frame?
     
  11. Great project! I did what you plan with parts from a 40 Ford just like someone would have done in 1950.Been driving it for more than 30 years. First time it let me down was last month when the condenser cooked. Some photos are here www.1948fordpickup.blogspot.com.
     
  12. dragsled
    Joined: May 12, 2011
    Posts: 1,977

    dragsled
    Member
    from Panama IA

    Great car to start with, My Girlfriend is doing a T ,you might think about useing a diff Frame with the V8 , the stock fram is pretty weak , Buildt to twist with the sup, Tim jones
     
  13. I'm a big fan of Hot rodded tall Ts, and that's a great start.
    Can't wait to see what you do with it.
     
  14. Beautiful! I like your plan too
     
  15. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Thanks for the inspiration, and sharing some pictures. Lots of cool stuff in that blog, 27TV8 and I'm glad I get to share my build with you guys.

    I kicked around the idea of using an A frame but the original frame has the vin stamp that matches the title. I know there are ways around it but I kind of like the idea. Given today's road condition, less than 100hp, and it will never have a sticky tire it should be fine with a little boxing, and some decent crossmembers. As long as the frame is as solid as it looks I'm confident in my plan. Besides, I'm sure quite a few factory T frames had more power put through them back in the day with out issue.

    On another note, I've been feeling like a little kid all day with my latest purchases. My newest hard part at the moment is the model 59 1946-1948 carb that came with the engine, and I narrowed the engine and transmission down to 1940. Within the next week or so I should have my rear end.
     
    gwhite and Hitchhiker like this.
  16. I'm not questioning it, just was curious if that was the plan as I have wondered about it myself.


    Posted using the Full Custom H.A.M.B. App!
     
  17. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Didn't take it that way, man. Just adding some train of thought to my decision. If I was going to be more aggressive with the build I would probably use something else.
     
  18. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 582

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    Like your plan. (I'm a little biased.) You are starting with a very nice car! I started with my avatar. According to my build time, you are about 10 months ahead already!
    I think the T frame will work too. I replaced mine, but now kind of wish I hadn't. Properly boxed and braced and welded, it oughtta work. I don't know if you are figuring on lowering it, but you may have to Z the frame 3" in the rear.
    Picture is mine in tis current state.
     

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  19. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Thanks you. I like your build too. I'm not sure on height as of yet but it may be on the higher side. I know I want to center the rear wheels in the fenders for sure so I may need to add a little wheelbase.
     
  20. Sundown Kid
    Joined: Sep 23, 2013
    Posts: 118

    Sundown Kid
    Member

    should turn out sweet! Great start already. Ts are great, and youll be unique!
     
  21. jaw22w
    Joined: Mar 2, 2013
    Posts: 582

    jaw22w
    Member
    from Indiana

    Yeah, the stock rear wheel placement in the fender well is off . I had to move my rear end back during mockup to fit the fender. Don't remember how much. I kept moving it a little at a time, and then stand back and look for a while, move it some more, look some more. I think it took less than an inch. The biggest problem with my build was trying to establish a ride height. I wanted it as low as I could get it, without tire rub. I had to change the front spring perch height 3 or 4 times to get it right. Leaving the fenders on makes building these cars a lot more difficult, but I think worth it in the end. There are just not many full fendered, unchopped T hotrods around anymore.
     
  22. pumpman
    Joined: Dec 6, 2010
    Posts: 2,411

    pumpman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Like this concept, I'll be watching. Jaw22w, very nice hot rod.
     
  23. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    Thanks man. Really digging your ride too.

    Getting the stance right can make or break it to me. I have a feeling I have a lot of mockup up to do. Frankly, I can't wait. I don't think I will go as low as you did though. The car is telling me it wants to sit a little more proud.

    Thank you. I'm still feeling good with the 40's style build. Hopefully I can start tear down pretty soon.
     
  24. Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Joined: Apr 20, 2008
    Posts: 3,701

    Hot Rods Ta Hell
    Member

    "It is believed the car spent it's life on Harsons island, and was rumored to be owned by the Ford Family. I'm not even sure if that can be verified but hey, it's cool none the less."
    I'd contact Greenfield Village to see if they want to have a look at it and can confirm whether or not it was owned by the Ford family-----before you start tearing into it.
    If it was a Ford family car, they or a collector may want it and you'd end up with plenty enough seed money to build away on something else.
    Having said that, it's a great solid start and it sounds like you have some good build plans for it!
     
  25. Eh, Henry would approve. Well maybe not Henry, but Edsel was a bit of a hot-rodder in his own right!
     
  26. rail job
    Joined: Feb 16, 2013
    Posts: 143

    rail job
    Member
    from Michigan

    I have thought about doing a bit of research to attempt confirmation but honestly I love the car too much to sell it off. If it is true I think it makes a great hot rod and would be proud to continue owning it. Also, I don't think it makes it that significant of a car if the rumor is true.
     
    kiwijeff likes this.
  27. I love the idea,,I'm subscribed! HRP
     
  28. kidcampbell71
    Joined: Sep 17, 2012
    Posts: 3,694

    kidcampbell71
    ALLIANCE MEMBER
    1. 60s Show Rods

    It might......lotta' Ford historical nuts tied to that part of the country....hell even the family may want it. Having said that.....

    I can't wait to see what you do.....starting with a great car....has sooooo many pluses.....then the wrecks usually attained, to do so. What a nightmare.
     
  29. AHotRod
    Joined: Jul 27, 2001
    Posts: 10,191

    AHotRod
    Member

    Cool ... Cool ... Cool !
    A non-chopped T ..... "I LOVE IT"

    Keep posting LARGE (not thumb nail) pictures as you go on this thread for us to follow along.

    What Speed Shop did you work at up there?


    Glenn
     

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