Go Back   The Ford Barn > General Discussion > Model A (1928-31)

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-12-2019, 07:28 PM   #1
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Talking Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Sorry if this is long winded but... I'm a complete newbie to early Fords but have a long history with late '60's fairlanes, ranchero's etc. Been chasing the dream of buying or building an early highboy or similar beast using vintage parts. No 350/350 and a 9" rear for me. After seeing the Jay Leno Model T episode, the idea of a no frills roadster resonated with me.

https://www.motor1.com/news/78732/ja...del-t-hot-rod/

A simple car with a basic 4 pot flathead power and do whatever is needed to make it run reliably and be fun. Being a tall guy I just don't fit well in small cars. Tried to buy a '46 CJ2A to tinker with an it just didn't fit me.

So, after finding the below image of a custom speedster style model A build I went shopping for a body swapped chassis hoping to score a rebuilt bottom half where I wouldn't get bogged down with in depth mechanicals and could move onto the body building part.



So, after a 340 mile round trip in my Cummins powered '71 F-350 we are underway, with a few snags... First walk around showed it was missing the carb and some of the linkages as well as three shocks. Story is it came From Michigan, had a coupe body on top and the guy who sold it to the PO said it had driven around his yard. Some more looking and it became apparent I was buying a partially reassembled basket case with some new and some used parts...

So, 140 miles from home I took a couple deep breaths and took the plunge. I've taken quite a few more deep breaths the past couple days.


Once back home I stripped the no longer needed sheet metal off and mounted the steering box / column. First, of many deep breaths, was noticing that it was cracked around the levers. Looking over the steering, none of the cotter pins were in place and the toe was atrocious.



There's a ton more but I'll try to condense it. While unloading it I noticed the rear was noisy and the clutch was way out of adjustment. Long story short I need to pull the driveshaft and trans free because I'm pretty sure the pinion bearing has com apart and I need to replace the clutch pawl adjustment bolts because some have the adjustment nut frozen.

As an industrial mechanic / machinist I fear nothing mechanical and six years in the navy taught be electrical troubleshooting as well. However, I need to know which resources to search for how to get this critter apart and back together safely. So, question time:

1. I have the handbook PDF that's floating around and assume at the very least I need Les Andrews handbook Volume 1? Anything else chassis related?

2. I need picture help with the accelerator linkage that bolts to the block. Mine was mangled by the PO during the body removal. I got it straighter and moving but don't know where the foot button should land in relation to the other pedals.

3. I need a source of a decent rebuildable carb. eBay or?

4. How does the starter engage? Mine is missing the rod to actuate it.

5. Are there any floorboard drawings out there to make my own?

As always, any help is appreciated in advance. I kinda need a hug and some encouragement because I'm only half way through the 7 stages of grief.

Jamie
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2019, 07:57 PM   #2
History
Senior Member
 
History's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2017
Location: NC Mountains
Posts: 275
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

That car at top looks awesome and yes the Jay Leno video made me open my eyes to this type of car. Good luck with the project and keep posting photos.
History is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)
Old 08-12-2019, 08:39 PM   #3
wmws
Senior Member
 
wmws's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Coatesville, Pa
Posts: 529
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

You being in MD. Britton.com is just down the road from you. Brattons is one of the most respected Model A suppliers around. Their catalog has numerous diagrams and descriptions of the parts you will need.
wmws is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2019, 09:42 PM   #4
Purdy Swoft
Senior Member
 
Purdy Swoft's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Alabama
Posts: 7,374
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Brattons catalog is my number one quick reference for just about anything model A
Purdy Swoft is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2019, 10:09 PM   #5
Railcarmover
Senior Member
 
Railcarmover's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2017
Location: Sacramento
Posts: 1,238
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Stock model a powered speedster cool,hopped up model a speedster cooler..if i were you I wouldnt do a thing but study,buy the Andrews books,the ford service bulletins and start learning.
This chassis has roughly double the power of stock and a mitchell overdrive..build one that not only looks fast...but is fast.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg thumbnail - 2019-07-24T061326.019.jpg (55.1 KB, 165 views)
Railcarmover is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-12-2019, 11:22 PM   #6
mike657894
Senior Member
 
mike657894's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Bay City Michigan
Posts: 940
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

all the info is online. lots of good videos on youtube. a new pressure plate is not too pricey. the starter is just a threaded rod that goes through the floor. the rod pushes on the back of the sprung contact. There are rebuilt carbs on ebay and mystery ones can be cheaper. parts come up on face book and Craigslist.


there are many suppliers of parts.

mikes A fordable
snyders
macs
berts.
tams
mike657894 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2019, 09:57 AM   #7
1930artdeco
Senior Member
 
1930artdeco's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 2,614
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

The nice thing about Model a's is almost all of the parts can be bought new. That being said most if not all of the parts can be rebuilt and will be better than the new parts. Hershey is in your neck of the woods and I highly recommend-which I am sure you know about already.


Mike
__________________
1930 TownSedan (Briggs)
Still learning after all these years....
1930artdeco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2019, 08:09 PM   #8
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Thanks gentlemen for the kind words. This morning I made a list and took a trip down to Bratton's for the book and some much needed goodies to get the project moving. I'm going to pull the engine and trans, then deal with the rear in the frame if I'm lucky. Took a week off work to work on the house and haven't touched it yet.

The learning curve is steep but I'm climbing it.
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2019, 08:19 PM   #9
Beater
Senior Member
 
Beater's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Southern Alberta
Posts: 481
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

have a look here for inspiration and ideas. I have so much fun with mine it should be illegal

https://www.fordbarn.com/forum/group.php?groupid=31
Beater is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2019, 07:13 AM   #10
Chris in WNC
Senior Member
 
Chris in WNC's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Pineville NC
Posts: 1,021
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

excellent source for a rebuilt carburetor is Bert's in Denver.
I had a Coupe that ran poorly for years despite continuing efforts to fix.
a Bert's carb made it run great!
__________________
'35 Chevrolet Standard 2-dr, unrestored
Chris in WNC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2019, 08:56 AM   #11
rotorwrench
Senior Member
 
rotorwrench's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: San Antonio, Texas
Posts: 10,172
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Les Andres "Model A Ford Mechanics Handbook" is a decent maintenance manual with a lot of illustrations. You might want to get one if you are going to use a lot of stock components.
rotorwrench is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-14-2019, 09:07 AM   #12
Dave in MD
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 154
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Jamie,
There is a an active Model A club that meets in Hagerstown. They are called the Hub City Model A Club. They have a web site and contact information.
Good luck with your project.
Dave
Dave in MD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 12:10 PM   #13
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Lightbulb Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Let me know if you guys can see these pics. Trying to get an easy way from the phone to the forum and if this works I'll use it versus cross load everything to Imgbb and host from there.






I've made some decent progress the past couple days. Mostly thanks to the Les Andrews book and a lot of googling the webs. I'm still trying to figure out what happened to the pinion gear. The preload nuts were tight so I assume I'll be splitting the cases. The ring gear looks ok through the fill hole. I haven't been able to pop the outer race out of the housing. First I wanted to see how many spring leafs (leaves?) I have an figure out which to get rid of for the much lighter speedster body. Looks like it has 10 and should have 7 for a roadster (or less). Supposedly this thing has a coupe body on it but who knows what it came with... Once I think the pack (literally) I'll bolt it back into the frame and brace against that to unload the shackles.

Other fun was popping the trans apart and I found a broken pressure plate bolt in the flywheel. It's about half out, used the pressure plate as a drill guide to center drill the damaged end. It's a good trick to know and use. Otherwise things are going pretty well although I'm not sure what I'm going to do with the yellow paint. I feel I should strip it but that's gonna suck. Maybe I can figure out some way to incorporate the various hues into the "racing" legacy. Maybe.

I do need one 21" wheel and probably the center section of a rear.

Last edited by Ranchero50; 09-17-2019 at 08:44 PM.
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 12:57 PM   #14
31Tudor
Senior Member
 
31Tudor's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 416
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Jamie,
If you want speedsters galore, Google NW Vintage Speedsters, and you will get all kinds of ideas of what people have done.
31Tudor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-17-2019, 09:30 PM   #15
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Been making some decent progress on the frame and driveline. Thanks to a fellow model A'er from Rockville I am back on track with a good 3.54 geared rear and a couple spare wheels that are in better shape than mine.

This afternoon I spent some time wire wheeling the frame after getting some semi gloss black Rustoleum at Lowes. After a half hour of cleaning I finally realized the futility of it all. I needed to just ditch the idea of returning it to black as I was never going to get all of the yellow off. I figured every stone chip would uncover some yellow. Plus dang it since this is a racer why not go with yellow on the frame? If it gets chipped and shows some black it'll look more 'authentic'. Not my first choice but sometime you just have to go with the flow.

Finally spent some time this evening once the sun set with the trans in my parts washer cleaning decades of goop off. Looking over it I think the engine was worked on, the rear was worked on but the trans wasn't. Or I have an orphaned tranny. Who knows...

Tomorrow's goal is to get the trans cleaned up the rest of the way and maybe get the engine on the stand so I can pull the pan and check out it's guts. Might even push the frame up under my big pine tree and paint it with a brush.

More to come.
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-18-2019, 10:43 AM   #16
katy
Senior Member
 
katy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 2,046
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Quote:
Tomorrow's goal is to get the trans cleaned up the rest of the way and maybe get the engine on the stand so I can pull the pan and check out it's guts.
Don't forget that after the oil pan has been drained it still has about 1/2 quart of oil in it that is sitting in the dipper tray.
__________________
Don't go away mad, just go away.
katy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2019, 05:09 PM   #17
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Well, I gave up on the bottom end, decided to not go down that rabbit hole until it at least runs. Long term is a B block so I can build some power anyway so...

Still chipping away at getting the chassis sorted out. I decided to run with the 5 widest springs in the rear and needed to machine a pair of shackle blocks with a 1.25" block. Once machined I ground the sharp edges with some 40 grit paper, used a needle scaler on the exposed spots and then deburred the parts with a wire wheel. The end result looks like a casting. The spring is back in the frame and waiting on the rear brakes to get installed onto the new (to me) axle assembly.




Other projects include bushing the pedals and replacing the shaft as well as still fighting the pressure plate adjustment. in the end I think I'm going to cut the nuts off and replace them to gain some adjustment. I also made another trip to Bratton's for suspension stuff to finish up the underside.

Last edited by Ranchero50; 09-17-2019 at 08:46 PM.
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-13-2019, 09:20 AM   #18
Ranchero50
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Hagerstown MD
Posts: 76
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Update on the car. Spent the past couple weeks getting the rear end swapped out, going through the rear brakes, transmission, drive shaft and clutch as well as rebuilding the pedal assy and removing a couple leaves from each spring package. Once it was back on the ground I started mocking up the body and floor profiles. These boards will be used to model the metal replacements.

Currently I'm making another list for Bratton's to get the brake rods and steering box working as well as new rear axle castle nuts and seals. Nickels and dimes, lots of them...




Last edited by Ranchero50; 09-17-2019 at 08:48 PM.
Ranchero50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-13-2019, 10:09 AM   #19
katy
Senior Member
 
katy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Alberta, Canada
Posts: 2,046
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

Quote:
as well as new rear axle castle nuts and seals
Don't forget the hardened flat washers that go between the castle nut and the hub. FWIW, the washers I got from Bratton's were too soft, I ended up getting proper hardened washers from the local friendly "Cat" dealer.
BTW, you can patch up that steering wheel w/bondo, then a coat or 2 of black enamel.
__________________
Don't go away mad, just go away.
katy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-13-2019, 11:45 AM   #20
Purdy Swoft
Senior Member
 
Purdy Swoft's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Alabama
Posts: 7,374
Default Re: Newbie '29 Speedster project, the good the bad and even the ugly (maybe)

I use black lacquer on patched up steering wheels . Lacquer dries pretty quick and gives a harder finish .
Purdy Swoft is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Sponsored Links (Register now to hide all advertisements)


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:01 AM.