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smart142

The Model T

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I agree, you can fix any car made up to the late sixties with thin wire and bubble gum. New ones, not so much.

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Did the first mod to the model ''T'', and no Bill ,it wasn't the side markers.

The car came with some original 1921 plates but they were in poor condition.

Cleaned them up and painted, I think they look great......

 

Model_____T______aug_2013_012.jpg

Model_____T______aug_2013_014.jpg

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Had difficulty picking up the model ''T'' with my 2 post hoist because the running boards get in the way and the frame rails are close together. (arms couldn't extend far enough)

 

Fabricated a special cradle and voila.

....

Model_____T______aug_2013_020.jpg

Model_____T______aug_2013_022.jpg

Model_____T______aug_2013_025.jpg

Model_____T______aug_2013_021.jpg

Model_____T______aug_2013_029.jpg

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Hmm, it could use some paint on the rusty bits!

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Thanks Mike, I'll get right on it :D Remember she's 92 years old and has been on the road regularly!

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WOW!!!   I can't believe its been 5 years since I posted about the T.

 

As has been stated before, the brakes on the T are horrible .I had the misfortune of rear ending a truck in rush hour traffic a month after buying the car.

Only dented his tail gate and no damage to the T.

 

So I bought the upgraded Rocky Mountain brakes. Started the install but then wondered about the condition of the wood spokes.

Thought it would be prudent to change those.

 

Found a Mennonite shop that said they make them but they had to age the wood. -  6 months later I had the spokes but they were all different sizes and I knew they were not adequate for a ''motor driven carriage.''

 

I was lucky enough to find a gentleman who had been taught to work on T's by his father. Now I have fresh hickory spoked wheels that are superb!!

That process added another year.

 

Then the poor T sat at the back of the repair line up till last Wed.

I've decided to designate Wednesdays at the Model T restoration day!

I want to have her ready for the road by the spring in time for her 100th birthday!

 

In the past few years I did refurbish the carb and had the rad restored. 

And am happy to say that they were installed last week.

 

Bought a new 6y battery so tomorrow I'll flush the tank, change the oil, and then see if she will fire up!

Keeping my fingers crossed!!!!

 

 

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Always love to see people work to keep a piece of history on the road. Great work buddy..!!

About 30 years ago a buddy of mine and myself thought about buying one each. BUT, your head will explode when you hear what we had in mind for them!  We knew they were built for rough road conditions seeing as their roads were basically dirt tracks. We were heavily into off-roading deep into the far north with Jeeps etc. We thought that a pair of well mechanically restored "T's" would be a great way to do the same thing with. Not destroy them but see what they could do under those circumstances. I recon they would have surprised many with their capabilities.

Again great to see you moving forward on your project.  Far easier than the electrical nightmare the Smart is....lol.

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So on the 15th of Dec my friend and I tried to start ''Lizzie''. She turned over but wouldn't fire.

 

When the ignition was turned on you should normally hear a ''buzzing'' sound this was absent.

Decided to call in a ''T'' expert - Diesel Dave.

 

He was kind enough to drive down to help over the holidays. We determined that there was power going to the front circuit board but none to the coils.

''Hotwired'' and now we heard the coils buzzing!  That meant the ignition switch was defective.

 

We tried starting and heard a few sputters, remember the carb had been rebuilt so it needed to be adjusted correctly. We tried for a few minutes to get her going and then another problem - the bendix drive let go. Probably our fault for using the starter too long. Dave said that was a relatively easy repair.

 

Turns out the ignition switch was $95 with 2 new keys and a new bendix was $75.

Ordered the parts and they arrived 5 days later.  IMHO very reasonable.

 

The ignition switch was easy to replace. Only 9 wires to transfer.

The bendix drive was also easy to replace. It had 4 screws holding the cover. Awkward but doable, When the cover was removed you could see that the spring had broken. 

That would have been only $8 to replace.

 

With those repairs done we were now ready to try starting her again - and voila after a few minutes she fired up and ran!!!!!

That put a smile on my face!!!  She did run a little rough so I decided to replace the spark plugs ($14 per)

 

While I was waiting for those, ''Lizzie'' was put up on the hoist and I cleaned up the underside. Then I applied a paint over rust primer and 2 top coats.

The same was done for the steel rims.

 

Last Wed my friend and I worked on fitting the Rocky Mountain brakes. We finished that but the final step was to weld a rod onto the brake lever. That was removed and my friends son volunteered to do the welding as he is a machinist.

 

So yesterday we finished the install. We did the best we could adjusting the brakes but we will need to do a road test for the final adjust.

That won't happen till the snow is gone and the roads are clear.

 

Now I'm really looking forward to the warmer weather :D :drive:

 

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Glad to see you got back to this project.  It bothered me to see it sit in the corner for the whole time since I first met you.

 

Nigel

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4 hours ago, Nigel said:

Glad to see you got back to this project.  It bothered me to see it sit in the corner for the whole time since I first met you.

 

Nigel

Ditto....I once entertained the idea of owning such a beauty, but.....it's great to hear you have finally gotten her running and in better shape.  I look forward to some day seeing her run.     I hope my project won't be as old as her when mine finally sees sun light again...lol.

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I  don’t have particulars, but there was a demo team that appeared at car shows that laid out all the individual parts of a Model T (including engine assembly) and were timed to completely build a complete, finished and running car in under 60 minutes (windshield included, yuk, yuk).  I saw them at the Bothwell Car Show a few years back.  Very impressive to watch.

Maybe an internet search or some other contact could put you in touch with these experts.

Many of the team looked older (like we are) and might offer some help with tough problems.

I’ll try to find out what I can on them also.

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Timed events....brings back memories of watching the military shows where they had cannons and obstical courses that required disassembly and assembly to finish course.    Great fun to watch.

 

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On the 17th of February I had the T appraised - $20,000.   A bit generous as similar T's seem to be going for around 12 - 15,000.

 

Of course that's when things turned for the worst. Right after the appraisal I tried and tried to get her started and nothing worked.

I checked the compression, with the help of my friend, and found the problem.

Compression on # 1 and 4 was 50psi which is normal #2 was 25 and #3 was ZERO!

That would explain why the difficulty to start and idle.

 

So I ordered a new head gasket ($35) and removed the 15 head bolts - all came out with no damage.

The cylinder head was in good shape (has huge combustion chambers). The pistons and cylinders looked to be in good shape.

 

The problem looked to be the exhaust valves for the #2 and 3 cylinders. The seats and the valves were pitted and carboned up.

Decided to try to clean them up, and lap the valves to try to get some compression. Did all that and had the head planed ($100).

 

Put her back together and guess what - no improvement - in fact the #2 now had no compression.

Oh well, it was worth a try because the next logical step would be to take the engine to a machine shop for a rebuild.

 

My friend  worked for 35 years at the Ford St. Thomas assembly plant and for the last 15 years there he was a repairman who swapped out engines and transmissions.

So it was relatively easy for the two of us to get the engine and transmission out - about 4 hours total.

The machine shop that I use is very busy and didn't even have the room to store the engine. They also said it would be easier for them to just have the engine.

 

So last Wednesday we removed the tranny cover and pedals.

The lower pan is shared by the engine and tranny - a lot of bolts to remove that, and then just 4 holding the flywheel and the tranny was off. That only took 2 hours.

With the tranny off the machine shop was able to take the engine. I'm hoping they will be able to examine it this week so I can get the parts ordered.

Unfortunately for me the machine shop is at least a month behind. 

 

As I stated earlier the combustion chamber is huge and could easily accommodate the new domed high compression pistons that give more power.

Prices again I think are reasonable - the pistons, rings, and valves would come to about us$500

I'm also considering an improved clutch.

 

A bit of a set back but once she's all back together I should be able to get years and years of service from her. :D

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You did check the clearances on the push rods or rockers that hold the valves open right...? Just asking for a friend...lol.  Sometime when lapping valves etc things change and we aren't aware of what it may have done in relation to the rest of the  engine pieces...?  Did you do a leak down test to see where the loss of pressure was coming from? Again asking for a friend...lol.  I'm sure you thought of these things....but if you didn't...?  The block never froze did it?  Get the head tested for invisable cracks, magna-flux or something ...can't remember what the process is called...?
Here's hoping it a simple easy fix, hate to see a piece of real history go bad.

 

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Magnaflux, I did this with my 404 engine parts.

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make an adapter with an old plug or cheap compression tool to put air pressure in the cylinder

 

leak will be easy to find

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