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Wooden Frames

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by plym49, Aug 20, 2009.

  1. Road Runner
    Joined: Feb 7, 2007
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    Wood bridges, especially for trains and the old wooden roller coasters are other long-term and high stress outdoors constructions, one could take clues from.

    No doubt that laminated wood is very strong and resilient, but that is a whole other appraoch versus using solid wood beams.

    If it had to be laminated wood, I'd give bamboo a try.
     
  2. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
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    Cedar!?!? Who'da thunk? I have a couple of gorgeous tall perfectly straight cedars on my property that need to come down. I was going to have a local sawmill cut them up for use in a shed. Now I can get a frame out of them, too!?

    Seriously, I would have thought that cedar is too oily for good glue adhesion. It also is kind of soft - concern about fasteners walking about. Are these concerns not valid?
     
  3. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
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    The engine you show looks water cooled.The engine in the car appears air cooled. Very early Curtiss V-8's were air cooled but the valve arrangement and head shape looks a lot different.
    Could be an early car engine but the air cooling is usually an aircraft design.My guess,probably wrong,is European.
     
  4. HR Classic Cars
    Joined: Aug 11, 2008
    Posts: 308

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    Oil is not a problem, look at the boat builders, they prefer to use teak, much more oily then cedar. Just use the right epoxy (boat builders) and it will work fine.

    The epoxy will penetrate the wood very very well, the epoxy will provide the hardness, the wood fibers the strength.
     
  5. 29nash
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
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    Yep, weight/strength ratio is virtually the same as Fir or Spruce. The weight/strength ratio of Fir and Spruce is superior to the hardwoods, just need to plan the cross-sectional dimension to meet strength requirements. The only downside I see to softer wood is susceptibility to denting from tools, road rash, as HR Classic Cars says, possibly coat with a clear hard epoxy.
    Cedar is very popular as exterior trim/siding because of it's durability to weathering. Would make an absolutely beautiful rig, an encouragement to polish up skills to cut mortise and tenon joints. I visulize wrought iron straps wrapped around frame rail/crossmember joints to hold mortise & tenon in place.
     
  6. synthsis
    Joined: Mar 29, 2006
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    [​IMG]

    This car is the definition of TOUGH.
     
  7. One of the worlds leading wind turbine manufacturers make their blades out of small lengths of plywood (no longer than 12") which are then laminated together. Certainly makes for very strong blades, and they are 45 metres long!
     
  8. hydroshawn
    Joined: May 27, 2006
    Posts: 335

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    from Brenham,Tx

    I had an oldtimer tell me that one of the strongest woods used is ironwood usually black in color and as hard as steel. used for hand rails on ships. I don't know where to get it. maybe search the net

    [SIZE=+3]Ironwood Tree[/SIZE]
    Olneya tesota, Bean Family Or Pea Family ( Leguminosae ) ( Fabaceae ), Ironwood Tree. Also called Arizona Ironwood, Palo-de-Hierro and Palo-de-Fierro.
    The wood of the desert ironwood is very hard and dense. It will sink in water. It is also very difficult to cut

     
  9. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
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    Yes. Although front and rear crossmember would probably be Model A/Model T. Ends welded to a flat plate that is bolted to the frame rails. Wrap these locations with strap.

    If I do this it will be Doug Fir. Have a couple of nice 2x12s around - plenty to work with. Maybe just linseed oil to protect the frame.
     
  10. 29nash
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
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    It's settled; I'm well into the planning stages! Thanks, plym49, for bringing this up. Now, every time I'm working on Nash Hotrod this winter with the interior upholstery, this 'next project' will be on my mind. :D
    The easy thing for me will be the wood frame, the more difficult logistics will be to find an affordable Gnarly-Oldy-Open rocker arm motor. I'll be using parallel leaf springs of course, with mechanical brakes like those on '24-'28 chivvy or Nash. If it were to be just for lookin' at it wouldn't need front brakes but I'm gonna want to drive it on the street, therefore..............etc.,etc.
     

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  11. Silent_Orchestra
    Joined: Jun 17, 2007
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    Why not run an old flathead inline of some sort, I've got a '29 Pontiac 6 that would be cool, the head is split in the middle, with the dizzy right where the heads split. I've always wanted to use it in something very old timey...
     
  12. davesville
    Joined: Dec 13, 2006
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    a friend races boats v8 v12 etc.they only use timber frames because it flexes and does not fatique like steel.have seen a few cars from the thirties which have been undercover and are still tight as a drum dont underestimate timber if done properly
     
  13. Zerk
    Joined: May 26, 2005
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  14. Shifty Shifterton
    Joined: Oct 1, 2006
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    An observation that's not been made yet.....

    The vast majority of wood "framed" machines aren't framed in the traditional steel hotrod sense. The body of the machine is integrated into the frame turning it into an exoskeleton, which is a huge difference structurally.

    If the method is going to work by any modern standards, it's probably not going to be a traditional perimeter frame with a doodlebug body bolted on top.

    Perhaps part of this discussion is how you're going to wood frame the body, and integrate it into the frame's structure.

    And I don't know any way to say this other than just say it......if you want a wood framed car, build a wood framed car. But the arguement that you have the wood and don't have the steel is complete BS, in the end using that as a decision point will cost more $$$ in the end. That's not a dig at wood frames, but my firm belief about how you PLAN a successful project. Flawed planning won't make nice machines unless lady luck is on your side. Decent wood is so desireable you shouldn't have any trouble selling some off to generate enough cash to buy a couple pieces of tubing and they might even be used and bought for scrap weight. You're already gonna use steel crossmembers, so really how many $$$ of metal are we talking here?

    Good luck with the project!
     
  15. Hackerbilt
    Joined: Aug 13, 2001
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    Cheat! :D

    Get some Rectangular tube of the right size...holesaw large "lightening" holes right along the full frame length and press the wood of choice tightly thru the length of the tube, thus exposing the "wood frame".
    The wood could be easily planed or sanded to size for a good fit inside the metal tube.
    The steel frame itself can be built just like any Rec steel frame, while the addition of the internal wood offers a structural and decorative component.
    Would be easy to do and with some thought the wood could even be added during construction if the frame were to be Zee'd or tapered or whatever.
    The lightening holes could be stopped slightly away from the weld points to allow the wood to be kept clear of the weld heat.
    The lack of holes in the higher stressed spliced areas would allow the the frame to retain full strength in the joins where there is actually a gap in the wood insert.
    That actual gap in the wood being hidden by the lack of lightening holes in those particular areas...so it would still appear to continue thru the full frame uninterrupted.

    That "full Steel Jacket" around the wood "frame" could be in a contrasting color and use thru bolts for strength and an assembled look.

    I think it would look incredibly cool if done well and be just as strong as any regular frame!
     
  16. plym49
    Joined: Aug 9, 2008
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    LOL I will build it the way I want for my own reasons. You can rationalize your own opinion, that is likewise your right, but this will be done my way.

    And yes this will be a scary timber framed vehicle. Not a wooden monocoque. Parallel frame rails with steel crossmembers fore and aft and wodden in between. Engine will be a 218 flathead MoPar, rear a banjo and front axle buggy. Mechanical brakes all round.

    Hot rodding, IMO, is also about doing what you will with what you have. Yes, I can get steel tube. Just not interested in yet another me too car.

    I will wave to all as I fly by at 25 mph. :) :) :)
     
  17. plym49
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    Yes, could do that, but way more work, way more wasted material and in the end all I would have would be a puny steel frame. :) :) :)

    You raise a good point, though, that there are many many ways of doing this. Let's see what I come up with, if and when.
     
  18. 29nash
    Joined: Nov 6, 2008
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    Yes, that's a choice. I visualize 'undressing' a motor like that to imitate much earlier/rarer motors.
    With the valve cover side plate removed it would allow one to observe the tappets operating, with a canvas curtain to catch the oil splatter, not completely contain it, just direct it to keep it off of EVERYTHING. With that side plate off, to keep oil from running down the side of the block, fab a tray to catch it and direct it back into the crankcase. Smoke from the crankcase would add to the fray and some of that oil mist could be directed onto the outside of the exhaust manifold.:D Then, convert the V belt pulleys to accept flat leather or web belt to run the fan & generator imitating others from the teens and twentys.
     
  19. plym49
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    Happy to be a bad influence! LOL

    I wonder if you could convert some OHV inline to open rocker arm configuration.
     
  20. plym49
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    I like it. Maybe an updraft carb, too?
     
  21. 29nash
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    Good idea, many intake manifolds can be easily turned upside down and with some drilling and tapping an updraft could be installed, Like one of those old Brass Strombergs used on Hupmobile, Studebaker, Packard, etc. Of course a Chivvy 4 cylinder would be a likely choice with the cross flow head, already has updraft. On that motor, one could simply leave the valve cover off and contain/re-direct some of the oil splatter with canvas curtains.
     
  22. plym49
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    I really like that idea. You could probably do some cast iron reshaping/removal just to change the appearance of the block and head without hurting anything. Unneeded bosses, etc. But what about the ball-mounted, stamped rockers?
     
  23. 29nash
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    If I chose OHV, I would go back at least to vintage where rockers are forged. Chivvy 216 or prior. Actually I like your idea of an oldie flathead, pre '30:cool:

    :eek:I sold the flat six out of Hotrod Nash two years ago.:eek:Oh, well.......
     

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    Last edited: Aug 28, 2009
  24. plym49
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    Good choice for a 6; I'll bet you could retrofit something like a rocker shaft with forged rockers from an old Nailhead if you go with the Chevy 4.

    So is yours going to be a doodlebug or a speedster?
     
  25. 29nash
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    The one I'm visualizing right now, hoodless of course; That flat Nash motor would work, but as I said, it was converted to cash two years ago. It was quite advanced for it's time, the Tappetts, adjusters, etc. were all mounted in a removable assembly, similar to the old Ajax motor. Right there behind the carburetor two large plates, and one could take the tappett assemblys (two of them) out and work on them.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 28, 2009
  26. RichG
    Joined: Dec 8, 2008
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    Just a note about wooden boats, at least small ones. A large number of those craft built today are laminated wood covered with fiberglass cloth and resin. That would take care of any worries about long term conditioning of the wood. If you can't bring yourself to use fiberglass, an alternative might be in how wooden handle tools can be treated. Repeated treatments of hot water followed by sanding will close the grain and strengthen the wood. Just some food for thought:D

    I think the wooden frame idea is kinda cool myself. Dare to be different, do what you want to do!
     
  27. plym49
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    VERY cool. With full elliptics in back?

    The motor I have is a 52 Dodge 218. With the pickup tranny. So it will need a little work to prevent it from looking too new. I should be able to visually get that motor back into the 30s. I wonder what you would do to get it to look like the 20s. Maybe some old timey water pump?
     
  28. plym49
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    I never heard of the hot water trick; thanks! I like the look of Douf Fir grain when sanded smooth; perhaps I would simply oil the frame. Linseed oil maybe like on the stock of an M1 rifle from Army days. If this becomes a Speedster, it will be inside and if it is a Doodlebug, who cares. LOL

    But 29Nash is getting me thinking Speedster. He is a bad influence.
     
  29. RichG
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  30. 29nash
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    Of course durability is important to many of you youngsters, but this type of project, I'm convinced I'll do it, I'll be pushin' up daisies before the wood deterioates.:D I don't have any wood of the necessary dimensions, so I'll find hardwood, probably Red Oak. If I had some fir or spruce already, wouldn't hesitate to use that. Finally, the wood has to show off it's beauty so covering it is out of the question, for me.
     

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