Register now to get rid of these ads!

Projects The Thomas Rocket Car Restoration

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by mramc1, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Finishing up the structure before the belly pan. rocket-204.jpg

    rocket-205.jpg

    Bam, new belly pan panels out of the bead roller.

    rocket-245.jpg

    rocket-246.jpg
     
  2. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Here is a video of making the big panels



    Clamping the pre-primed pan in place.

    rocket-213.jpg

    Welded from the top side and tacked around the perimeter.

    rocket-212.jpg

    rocket-217.jpg

    Now the torque tube tunnel.

    rocket-215.jpg

    rocket-219.jpg

    Completed tunnel with new heater tube to rear seat.

    rocket-221.jpg

    rocket-223.jpg

    I then primed and painted the inside of the floor before fabricating the top sections.

    rocket-226.jpg
     
  3. I really admire anyone with the balls to take on a job like this...and to back it up with care, patience and skill...all the better. Thank you for posting.
     
    Thor1 likes this.
  4. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 13,586

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I am comforted you did what you did and actually have knowledge of this dangerous very popular mineral that was great for everything back in the day. I have lost friends to this substance...and been up close and personal with it a few times with an element of fear let me tell you.

    I see fellas here with kids around the shop and every effort should be made to keep exposures to one self and anyone in vicinity of the shop. Our hobby has some nasty elements.

    Enough...again I'm happy for you guys.
     
    chryslerfan55 and Atwater Mike like this.
  5. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 13,586

    Stogy
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    The way this thing was built reminds me of the Chrysler Airflow as well that was highlighted for its strength to get you there safely. when you were taking the floor apart it's being stout was quite apparent.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  6. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Yeah, thanks. I tried to be as safe as possible. I'm 40 now so mesothelioma at 70 would probably suck. This car is super strong as even with the rot as bad as it was the doors still worked good and the gaps were tight.
     
    chryslerfan55 and Stogy like this.
  7. fiftyv8
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 4,777

    fiftyv8
    Member
    from CO & WA

    I'd like to see some decent pic's of the front and read suspension setups please...
     
  8. Jonnie King
    Joined: Aug 12, 2007
    Posts: 2,077

    Jonnie King
    Member
    from St. Louis

    Josh...

    Thanks for the Thread, but more importantly, thanks for saving this rare, early piece of R&C History ! It's always amazing how they accomplished what they did in those days with the tools, equipment, and sometimes, bare-bones resources, they had, plus, the frustrations, and, "roadblock's" they'd run into.

    More than anything it took sheer vision, singleness-of-purpose, a lot of time, and, blood, sweat, and tears, to reach their goals...and I'm always in awe at the creativity they exhibited to get there !

    BTW: I'm sure Harley Earl had some cool comments on this when he viewed it !

    Thanks again,

    Jonnie
    www.legends.thewwbc.net
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018
    chryslerfan55 and Atwater Mike like this.
  9. woodbutcher
    Joined: Apr 25, 2012
    Posts: 3,119

    woodbutcher
    Member

    :D Very nice Sir.Great craftsmanship is evident in the pics.Thanks for posting.Looking forward to your updates.
    Good luck.Have fun.Be safe.
    Leo
     
  10. blowby
    Joined: Dec 27, 2012
    Posts: 5,963

    blowby
    Member
    from Nicasio Ca

    Wow, amazing dedication and work! Be sure to read the link in the first post, great history on the car. Apparently used by the Thomas family quite a bit, 96k miles!
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  11. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Thanks. This has been an all volunteer and charity effort. Although this car doesn't have the historical significance of some other cars I thought it was too unique and too innovative to let it disappear into obscurity. Hopefully when it is done people will get to enjoy seeing it for years to come.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  12. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    After the floor structure was complete I made floor boards from more 18 ga. They are plug welded to the floor structure.

    rocket-227.jpg

    rocket-228.jpg

    rocket-231.jpg

    rocket-233.jpg

    With the floors complete I was finally able to remove the door bracing. No more climbing in and out of the car like the Duke Boys!

    rocket-235.jpg

    Next I started to piece the door jams back together.

    rocket-237.jpg
     
    chryslerfan55, Stogy, brEad and 2 others like this.
  13. 62rebel
    Joined: Sep 1, 2008
    Posts: 2,527

    62rebel
    Member

    Not only have I been reading the thread, I've watched most of the videos and that car is amazing as well as your patience. I get flusterated with trying to get parts for NORMAL cars to fit together! The original car is a wonder in itself; handmade but it looks like it came out SQUARE on almost every plane! And, the concepts seem sound, if unique for the day (and even today). That platform chassis has my gears turning....
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  14. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    rocket-241.jpg

    rocket-240.jpg

    Then I moved back to the rear firewall to finish that up.

    rocket-242.jpg

    rocket-243.jpg

    rocket-244.jpg
     
    chryslerfan55, Stogy, brEad and 3 others like this.
  15. The37Kid
    Joined: Apr 30, 2004
    Posts: 25,995

    The37Kid
    Member

    WOW! Hard to believe something could rust away that badly. Great Save! Bob
     
  16. Ned Ludd
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 3,866

    Ned Ludd
    Member

    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  17. rodknocker
    Joined: Jan 31, 2006
    Posts: 2,267

    rodknocker

     

    Attached Files:

    chryslerfan55 and Stogy like this.
  18. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Here is the video of the floor top.
     
    Stogy and kidcampbell71 like this.
  19. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Here are the requested pics of the suspension.
    Rear is '36 banjo with custom half shafts and coil sprung swing arms.

    rocket-279.jpg

    rocket-280.jpg

    rocket-283.jpg

    rocket-284.jpg

    rocket-293.jpg

    rocket-294.jpg

    Front suspension is coil sprung swing arms attached to fire wall, center steering cross with two tie rods, '36 Ford axle ends, and GM hydro shocks.

    rocket-285.jpg

    rocket-286.jpg

    rocket-287.jpg

    rocket-289.jpg

    rocket-291.jpg
     
  20. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 13,931

    Squablow
    Member

    Quite the engineering feat to build this car, glad to see it's not only getting saved, but getting restored in a way that replicates the original design features, even the ones like the floorpans and stuff that won't be seen.

    What's the deal with the fill primer and fresh looking bondo on the body? Was someone trying to repaint it with the floors and whatnot all rotted out? That seems odd.
     
    chryslerfan55 and Stogy like this.
  21. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 4,406

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I watched the first video, and it seems that this guy is an expert on floorpans and rockers (for sure)! He got the car from someone that was charged with doing the exterior bodywork, who, I would expect, found the problems with the floor etc. daunting. Since this is sort of a municipal project, the people involved probably weren't car folks and didn't really consider the way a project like this should be handled.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  22. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    You are correct. I came into the project about two years in. The car was blasted and had some body work done, but the rust repair wasn't done. I saw the need, volunteered, underestimated the severity of the work, and over 270 hrs later I am almost done. I got the car in January and am hoping to be done in two weeks or so. I have my own projects to work on and really want to wrap up and get it back to the body shop.
     
    chryslerfan55, Stogy and Squablow like this.
  23. tubman
    Joined: May 16, 2007
    Posts: 4,406

    tubman
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    I for one, am glad they got it to the right guy early enough. Can you imagine where it would be if they had kept going the way they were and had gotten the car into paint?
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  24. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    For some reason these pictures are stuck sideways even though they are straight on my computer. Sorry.

    rocket-249.jpg

    Trunk belly pan where the fuel tank goes.

    rocket-252.jpg

    rocket-257.jpg

    rocket-259.jpg

    What the trunk looks like now and what it looked like when I started.

    rocket-031.jpg

    Next I began patching the quarter panels and front fenders.

    rocket-263.jpg

    rocket-265.jpg

    rocket-266.jpg

    rocket-269.jpg

    rocket-272.jpg

    And then the passenger side.

    rocket-267.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
  25. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Here is the video of finishing up the trunk pan and tool tray.

     
    Nailhead A-V8 and Stogy like this.
  26. ken bogren
    Joined: Jul 6, 2010
    Posts: 570

    ken bogren
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    What a great thread! So cool to see the project progress at the hand of someone with the vision, talent, and determination to get it done.
     
    chryslerfan55 likes this.
  27. Squablow
    Joined: Apr 26, 2005
    Posts: 13,931

    Squablow
    Member

    Looks great. Those flush door hinge pockets are a cool feature. Do you plan to fully weld the seams on those body patch panels?
     
    Stogy likes this.
  28. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    No on the full weld. This car is going to live inside a climate controlled building. I'll just use Dura-glass waterproof filler on the outside of the seam and I have already seam-sealed the insides.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    chryslerfan55 and Stogy like this.
  29. fiftyv8
    Joined: Mar 11, 2007
    Posts: 4,777

    fiftyv8
    Member
    from CO & WA

    Thanks for posting the suspension pic's.
    I was concerned with all that underneath sheet metal that it might have been an opportunity lost to see the suspension.
    Great work saving this peace of history.
    Any idea what it weighs, it looks kinder heavy with all that metal in it!!!
     
    Stogy likes this.
  30. mramc1
    Joined: May 26, 2006
    Posts: 417

    mramc1
    Member

    Registration said 3600 lbs. I think.

    Sent from my SM-G930V using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
     
    chryslerfan55 and Stogy like this.

Share This Page

Register now to get rid of these ads!

Archive

Copyright © 1995-2020 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.