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Old 11-23-2012, 10:57 AM   #1
modela@aol.com
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Default Built your own Manifold Heater

As long as we have not been seeing any snow or salt on the roads yet in the Midwest, I have still been enjoying some driving in my Model A's. The manifold heaters I have in my cars seem to make the interior temp comfortable enough to keep the wife happy.

We have all seen the Autolight and Otwell Manifold heaters that are made of cast iron. I am wondering if it would not be that hard to make your own manifold heater out of sheet metal for use over a standard manifold just to direct some warmed air inside of the Model A via a hole in the firewall.

Please find attached a .pdf file of some old 1932 Patented ideas for yet another style of a Model A manifold heater.

A_AUTOMOBILE_EEATER.pdf
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File Type: pdf A_AUTOMOBILE_EEATER#2.pdf (200.7 KB, 563 views)
File Type: pdf A_AUTOMOBILE_EEATER#3.pdf (200.7 KB, 309 views)
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Old 11-23-2012, 12:35 PM   #2
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

I have one on my coupe that is similar to #3 PDF, except it has a round exit where it meets the firewall. It's made from 1/8" plate steel.
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Old 11-23-2012, 01:26 PM   #3
Tom Wesenberg
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Someone in our club had one in the original Ford script box that was tin and fit the stock manifold. It's the only one I've seen like it.

This is another one of those items that needs to be reproduced.
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Old 11-23-2012, 02:22 PM   #4
H. L. Chauvin
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Tom,

I have a rusty one-half of a sheet metal heater which came with my 1930 Model A & was stored under the seat.

Instead of horizontally surrounding the manifold, it was positioned vertically around the vertical part of the manifold "and" the vertical part of the exhaist pipe "including" the manifold/exhaust clamp.

The two halves were bolted together, & one half branched off into an integral tee configuration, thus providing heat throught the fire wall to inside the car.

Appears it could have heated quite well; however, for a "safety" announcement, it may be important to consider that "if" the manifold clamped leaked, the occupants would have entered into a very peaceful sleep.

Another vintage accessory feature I still have installed is an interior flat, round sheet metal heater door.

It rotates & slides up & down on a pivot pin on the inside of the vehicle with movement controlled by an enclosed heavy wire with an upper, attached handle located under the passenger side of the metal dash whereby one can regulate the amount of heat entering the car from the inside; or turn the heat all the way to OFF.

Have no idea where this came from, but this interior pivoting manifold heater door accessory works very well.
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Old 11-23-2012, 03:38 PM   #5
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Do any of these, even the most common one, actually produce enough heat to be worth it? Or would an extra pair of underwear and socks produce the same amount of warmth?
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:21 PM   #6
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

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Originally Posted by Banky View Post
Do any of these, even the most common one, actually produce enough heat to be worth it? Or would an extra pair of underwear and socks produce the same amount of warmth?
The trouble with manifold heaters is that they are heating air that is cold ambiant air. They are not really very good, and the colder it gets, the more heat you desire, but as the air is colder, it comes out of the heater less hot than on a nice day. It is still better than nothing, but maybe some woolies and double socks would do as well.
I have one in my tudor, and the hole was already in the firewall when I got the car.
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:32 PM   #7
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Mine work pretty well in the coupe and pickup because the passenger areas are small; the tudor is just OK, not great, better thannothing.
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:47 PM   #8
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

I have the cast iron Autolite heater with a rotating cover on the inside of the firewall. I am in restoration phase now but the mechanic that worked on my car (Fordor sedan) said the heater would drive you out if opened all the way. I think if that is true the metal cover will get too hot to handle . I am going to rig a bowden cable to work from the dash area. Bill G
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:59 PM   #9
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Last month I rode in the rear seat of a 31 Town Sedan with a manifold heater and on a 27* day it was very warm inside the car.
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Old 11-23-2012, 06:32 PM   #10
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

If my wife's feet are kept warm then Mama's happy and when Mama's happy I get to keep happy. The exhaust manifold heater works good enough for this....

I googled the Internet on the Model A exhaust manifold heaters and found this very well done article in the Wichita A's newsletter from last year.

http://www.wichitaas.com/newsletters...t%20Review.pdf

Now I am curious as to how many manifold heaters were actually offered back in the day. I have started a collection of photos of what I could find so far.

Exhaust Manifold Heater 1.jpg

Exhaust Manifold Heater 2.jpg

Exhaust Manifold Heater 3.jpg

Exhaust Manifold Heater 4.jpg

Exhaust Manifold Heater 5.jpg

Exhaust Manifold Heater 6.jpg
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:19 PM   #11
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Wesenberg View Post
Someone in our club had one in the original Ford script box that was tin and fit the stock manifold. It's the only one I've seen like it.

This is another one of those items that needs to be reproduced.

I have never seen this one and didn't know of its existence until your mention. I found a picture of it and a great heater article at this website. It is from the Maple A News from 2006. I am greatly appreciatiating the great technical articles put out by the local clubs in their newsletters. http://www.vtmodelaford.org/manmarch06.pdf

OK sheet metal guys Tom has put out the idea for this heater assembly to be made. Anyone want to take on a challenge to make this Official Ford Car Heater?
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:32 PM   #12
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

When my Dad was alive and owned the truck I have now, it got hot enough in the cab (in the summer) with the bypass door open but the connecting tube still installed that it started to melt the floor mat. I made him a bell cover that slips on the bell to stop the heat from coming into the cab.
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:36 PM   #13
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Goddard View Post
I have the cast iron Autolite heater with a rotating cover on the inside of the firewall. I am in restoration phase now but the mechanic that worked on my car (Fordor sedan) said the heater would drive you out if opened all the way. I think if that is true the metal cover will get too hot to handle . I am going to rig a bowden cable to work from the dash area. Bill G
I've never had that problem and I've had these heaters on every car I've owned in the last 25 years. The only way your heater door would get that hot is if you had it connected directly to the manifold cover, and that isn't the way they are installed. At least none I've ever seen. But the cable is a good idea, because those doors aren't easy to reach from the driver's seat.
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Old 11-23-2012, 07:44 PM   #14
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

There is that trap door on top rear of the Otwell Health Heater that is supposed to be open for Summer. It looks just to be in the right spot to help boil the gas out right of the sediment bulb though.....

Exhaust Manifold Heater a.jpg
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Old 11-23-2012, 08:42 PM   #15
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

This was on my coupe when I got it.
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Old 11-24-2012, 07:55 AM   #16
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

I found a "Red Head" Manifold cover heater in a shed once while hunting for needed parts. It is cast aluminum. Red Head made aftermarket water heaters into the 40's but that one is the only hot air manifold heater by that brand that I have seen.
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:21 AM   #17
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

At Hershey I saw a heater that was a large shell that fit over the entire muffler, it had a floor register for the rear seat floor.
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:26 PM   #18
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

I think the funnel is off another heater. It would be redundant to the cover scoop. The flex tube at the bottom of the elbow was for pre-heating air into the carb. There would have been a fitting to attach, probably with a shutter, to the carb.
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Old 07-02-2018, 09:43 PM   #19
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

Hottest days of the year and we are talking about Heater Manifolds?
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Old 07-03-2018, 09:26 AM   #20
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Default Re: Built your own Manifold Heater

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Originally Posted by modela@aol.com View Post
Hottest days of the year and we are talking about Heater Manifolds?
And why are we resurrecting a 6 year old thread to talk about Heater Manifolds on the hottest day of the year??
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