Got a 27 Coupe

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Squirrel
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Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun May 31, 2020 1:28 pm

Hi, new here...this is a little intro so you all can have some entertainment, and hopefully give me some pointers.

I've been playing with 1928 and newer cars a long time. A week ago, I heard about an older fellow that was having to move away, and needed to sell his T. I ended up buying it. For the past week, I've been tinkering with it, and getting a lot of helpful info from old posts on this forum. Here is a picture of the car, taken yesterday.
clean in shop.jpg
As you can see, it's a decent looking car, but the only things on it that have been actually fixed lately, are fresh paint, new tires, radiator, and replated shell. The rest seems to mostly be 1970s amateur restoration, and enough minor repairs to just keep it going, sort of.

The list of things to fix is pretty long...including the cracked head, very loose steering, non working magento and starter, top, and inside trim. I was able to get it started and driving. I have 4 acres in the country here in southeast Arizona that I can drive around on.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Mark Gregush » Sun May 31, 2020 2:17 pm

Very nice! Add to your list the visor over the windshield. The head can be repaired with JB weld or similar product, it's not a pressure system and is done all the time. You would not even have to pull the head. Drill small stop holes at the ends of the crack, V it out a little and smear it on, let setup, drive. :D
I know the voices aren't real but damn they have some good ideas! :shock:

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John kuehn » Sun May 31, 2020 2:50 pm

Loose steering is a common problem with T’s. Best idea is to replace all the bushings in the front axle assembly. Since you have a good mechanical knowledge with cars that’s a big help.
You probably already know but the best way to see what’s worn is to jack up the front axle and slowly move the steering back and forth. Watch all the tie rod ends and every thing that moves. If it’s loose when it’s on the ground the rest of the slack will definitely show up! You have a nice looking T and bet you will get it up to speed fairly quick.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun May 31, 2020 3:07 pm

Thanks!

The first thing I did was take apart the front end, to see what all was worn...pretty much everything, spindle bolts, bushings, tie rod end bushings and bolts, drag link and balls and caps, and the bushing at the shaft bracket. The planetary gears are not too bad. I put it all back together, it doesn't take too long.

The sun visor frame came with the car, of course it has nothing on it, so I need to do that, as well.

The top wood looks like it might be original, it has a few sets of holes from tacks and staples. The remains of the last top were still on the car. The bows were all there, but two had come out, and they need to be replaced. I have enough there to make my own using the old ones as patterns.

I'm planning at this point to do enough work to make the car safe to drive, but not spend too much on cosmetics. As you know, the utility of a T today is a bit limited, although I am one of those guys who will drive inconvenient old cars around, just because I can.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Norman Kling » Sun May 31, 2020 5:17 pm

Almost all the things you mentioned are easy to fix and the parts needed are available. If the ball joints on the spindle arms are still round, you can build up the ends of the tie rod and ream out with a round tool. Replacement caps are available. Use grease such as wheel bearing grease in those joints. All Spindle bolts and tie rod bushings and bolts are available. You will need to do some reaming on the spindle bushings but with the proper tool not hard. Someone in a local club might have a reamer which will cut the hole and face the surface.
The only thing you mentioned which is harder to fix is the magneto. To do it the best way would require removal of the engine and transmission. I would recommend the three books available from the club or from the vendors:Engine, Transmission, Electrical system. There are also books on: Front and rear Axle and Ruckstell axle.
The service manual is good, but those books I listed give much more detail in do it yourself form.
That is a beautiful car.
Norm

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun May 31, 2020 7:07 pm

Thanks. I've been reading a lot about how to work on these cars, it's all new...and interesting.

The starter problem appears to be the ring gear missing some teeth. A new ring gear was included with the car, but not installed. I've been thinking about taking out the engine and seeing how everything looks, and replacing the ring gear, and figuring out what's wrong with the magneto. I expect I'll be able to tell more once it's out, by checking coils for continuity, etc. I don't know about testing the magnets, or remagnetizing them or getting remagnetized ones. More stuff to figure out.

The crack in the head is about 6" long, on the middle top. I have a lead on a used head, so I'll see about just replacing it. I have read about the various repair options, and that looks like probably the best approach for this particular one.
engine01.jpg


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by OilyBill » Sun May 31, 2020 7:35 pm

Jim!
I see you have a vaporizer carb! Hope you keep it on the car.
Have you been in contact with any of the people in the "Tucson Touring T's"?
They are a really great group! They are very helpful as well, with good advice, and generous with the parts they have accumulated!
Bill


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John kuehn » Sun May 31, 2020 8:22 pm

If you plan to take the engine down most on this forum will recommend that the mag ring be replaced. If it’s the original ring the insulation is either stiff and cracked or beginning to flake off. It could be possibly still good and not shorted out. You can use some spray or or some type of motor winding insulation but it’s a short term fix. A rebuilt mag ring is around 200.00 but well worth it if you plan to run on mag. Lots of info on here also on recharging the magnets and checking them and spacing the ring and flywheel when putting things back together. It’s fun to play with 90+ year old technology!
One more thing is the radiator. And again if it’s the original it may or may not cool well when you really begin to drive one. But that’s another fun area to look at a little later.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun May 31, 2020 9:34 pm

I've contacted someone in the Tucson club.

Thanks for the tips on the magneto. I'll have to take a look at it, and see what's appropriate. I'd like to get everything on the car working as original, and apparently the magneto is an integral part of the ignition design, so I'd like to get it working. I plan to keep the vaporizer carb. It had some things that needed repair, and some things that still need repair, but I was able to get it cleaned out, and sealed up well enough that I can now start it with the crank in just a minute or two, if I pay attention to what I'm doing.

The radiator has been replaced, it has flat tubes, and is full thickness. The old radiator came with the car, it has round tubes, and the core is thinner.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Chad_Marcheese » Sun May 31, 2020 10:43 pm

Wow Jim, You sure do get around. This is probably the last place I expected to see you. I have followed you for years with your other cars on Drag Week. Finally met you briefly at Atco last year. Congrats on the car, it looks great.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Steve Jelf » Sun May 31, 2020 11:22 pm

When you get the engine out and the transmission removed so you can get to the magneto, you will want to remove the magnets for individual charging (the most effective way) and reinstall them with new brass screws. Sometimes the old screws have not aged well.

Here are some pages that may be helpful:


http://dauntlessgeezer.com/DG80.html


http://dauntlessgeezer.com/DG79.html


http://dauntlessgeezer.com/DG88.html
The inevitable often happens.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Norman Kling » Mon Jun 01, 2020 8:54 am

The engine must be pulled to get to the ring gear and it is entirely possible that the same thing which caused the ring gear to lose teeth is what caused the magneto to quit working. If you have something in the crankcase which could be picked up by the magnets it could cause worse damage which could possibly even fly up through the floorboards and hurt you! This all sounds alarming, I know, but spending some time and money now, could save you a lot more in the future.
After saying the above, I think you should not run the engine again until the engine and transmission are completely overhauled.
You still started with a lot more than I did! See picture below.
pile of rusty parts.jpg
pile of rusty parts.jpg (41.21 KiB) Viewed 7734 times
Norm

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Mon Jun 01, 2020 9:14 am

Thanks for the note of caution. However, I doubt there's anything flying around loose in there. I've removed the transmission door, and the bendix cover, and nothing looks scary, just the normal amount of fine particles. The ring gear having a bad spot seems to be something that happens, and it makes sense that having a vaporizer carb, and previous owners who really don't know how to get one of these cars working just right, would result in overuse of the starter, resulting in grinding a hole in the ring gear.

The magneto....I can do more investigating, but there seem to be several ways for it to fail, that are not catastrophic.

Besides, it's so much fun to putt around the yard!

Steve, I enjoyed the links...the one about recharging magnets is especially interesting. And the rear axle is another thing I need to check up on, I haven't really investigated it yet at all.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Mon Jun 01, 2020 10:57 pm

I went for a short drive on a public road today, speed limit 25, and the old car purred right along, mostly.

Later, I decided to see how the rear wheels and axle grease were doing, so I pulled the filler plug on the housing, and stuck my pinky in, and it seems to have something like 90 or 140 oil in it, almost an inch below the plug opening. Question: is 600 wt oil similar weight to 00 grease? I have some of the grease, but don't know where to find the 600 oil around here.

I pulled the rear wheels off, and was set to have to do some pulling to get the hubs off...but no, the nuts had cotter pins, but they were finger tight, and the drums slid right off. I sanded off the light rust that was covering about half the wear surface of the drums. The linings look like they are used, but still plenty of life left in them. looks like someone added rubber seals not too many miles ago. There is some end play in the axles, but not a whole bunch.

I did tighten the nuts when I put it back together, and plan to tighten them again.
rear brake1.jpg

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jun 02, 2020 6:24 pm

Been doing some reading on gear oil, etc. I guess I'll just use 140 when the time comes to change it.

Anyways...I decided to have a look at the timer, to see what it is and what condition it's in. Turns out it's an old Bakelite New-Day-Timer. The inside looks pretty nice.

I also got out my dad's old Heathkit voltmeter, he built in the 50s, to check the generator output. Started it up, and it's making about 7 volts or so at brisk idle.

Then I decided I ought to see what the mag is up to, so I set the meter to AC and put it on the mag wire. What do you know, over 10 volts. Huh. So I tried switching from battery to mag, and it kept running! great...one less thing to fix.

Went for another test drive, on our little country road. My phone has a speedometer app, so I could see how fast I'm going. The road is smooth, straight, paved, with a slight grade--on an old 3 speed Schwinn, I would go up in low gear and down in high gear. The T made it up to 26 on the way up, and 30 on the way down. I think it might need a bit more fiddling, but it's getting there.
generator output.jpg

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Dan_Jensen » Tue Jun 02, 2020 9:21 pm

Jim,
That is a nice looking T that you have there. The magneto putting out 10 volts is low, but the following is how it should be checked. It should get better with an in car recharge.
I am not to far away from you in Corona de Tucson. I did drive my T the 57 miles to Sierra Vista for the 2019 winter tour. Let me know if you need help.

http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/70 ... 760271.pdf
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jun 03, 2020 11:14 pm

Thanks!

I did the mag test, it lights up the bulb at idle, (I think around 10 volts) and gets pretty bright at high speed, (15 volts or a tad more). The crank does have end play, looks to be over .020", but I am not very good at judging how far things move, and didn't feel like getting out the indicator and taking stuff apart enough to attach it. Maybe in the coming weeks I will.

Near the end of the video you can see the crank pulley move back and forth.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SztVZ1nRWJI

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:01 pm

I decided it's time to do a compression test....results, no too good as you'd expect. I think the gauge is reading high, because it does not return to Zero all the way, but the numbers dry

40
35
35
30

and wet

45
40
40
35

So I think the valves are mostly sealing, but not real well, and the rings are not so good.

I decided to pull the head and take a look. Of course one of the bolts didn't want to turn as easily as the rest, and broke off a bit above the deck. The bores seem to be smooth and there is a slight ridge at the very top, I guess the rings sit up much higher on the T than they do on the modern engines I usually work on. Anyways, I got out the caliper and stuck it in a hole to see how much oversize it is...it read 3.750. Huh. I didn't know that was possible, almost a hundred years after it was made.

The bore gauge tells a fun story...#1 is mostly .010" oversize at most places, the rest range from 0.007 to 0.017, depending how high up, and at what rotation, I measure the bore. Pretty far out of whack.

No smoking, but there is quite a bit of carbon on the pistons. #1 had the least. I cleaned it looking for any stampings, not expecting to find any, but I didn't make it down to metal. I guess it's still an iron piston in there.

The valves have been worked on, at least one has been replaced. I haven't pull the side cover yet, to get the keepers out.
.
piston1.jpg
piston4.jpg


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Norman Kling » Fri Jun 05, 2020 2:54 pm

If you are lucky, you might be able to put a little heat on that broken bolt and then a bit of penetrating oil and let it set for a while. Then get a VERY tight grip with a good vice grip and try to remove the bolt. If not, you will need to drill it out. try to get your drill right in the center then with a very small chisel or punch, try to work the sides of the bolt into the center. Then it will come out. If you are lucky, the threads will still be useable. If not you might need to drill out and place a helicoil.
Norm

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:15 pm

Thanks for the suggestions. Since it was above the deck, I decided to try the "weld a big nut to it" trick, and it worked just fine. First time I've ever done that....

.
nut.jpg


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Norman Kling » Fri Jun 05, 2020 4:03 pm

That's great.
Norm


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by OilyBill » Fri Jun 05, 2020 4:10 pm

I've always wanted someone to try that, and then let me know how it works out. :lol: Looks good!

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 05, 2020 4:57 pm

I decided it's time to pull the engine, and see what it needs to get it to run better. I've known all along that I needed to change the ring gear, so it had to come out anyways. Should be out in another hour or so, all I have left is the stuff "in back". I removed the manifolds after taking this picture.

.
remove engine1.jpg

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 05, 2020 7:58 pm

Got it out and partly apart. The magneto had been making contact, the cam gear has a lot of slop, oil line plugged up with what looks like the remains of ring gear teeth, etc. After taking the mag off, I measured crank end play, right at .040" All in all a nice engine.

.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Duey_C » Sat Jun 06, 2020 12:40 am

Looking good Jim!
I'm so danged happy you tore into that Vaporizer carb and made it work for crank starts!
(You have been reading... Cool.)
Before half the fellas stating that you should put an NH on instead...
My old truck has a Vapo-rub carb and has started quite good on the crank every time I asked him to.
Starter didn't work there either. Sure an NH is a no-brainer but the Vaporizer is another bird that needs special attention.
This should prove to be a very interesting thread!
Thank you!
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jun 06, 2020 1:50 pm

I did some reading about the carb, and also thought about what would be the most cost effective fix...I think if I spend $25 on parts for the Vaporizer, it should do ok.

Anyways...I got the engine all apart. It's not too pretty. The ring gear has been wearing away for a long time, apparently, and it looks like bits of it did a number on the rear main. I took out the approx 0.008" shims in it, and it still has a lot of slop. And the thrust surfaces on the crank have noticeable wear, there's a good sized ridge just outside where they contact the cap.

you know you're in trouble if red plastigage won't squeeze!

I wonder what a replacement cap would do for it? Although I know it needs the whole works...grind crank, new babbit in the block and rods, bore the block, new pistons, etc.

The valvetrain looks like it just has a lot of wear, but could be run a while longer with new timing gears, and replacing the one original valve with a new one, and touch up the seats.

Did I mention that it appears to have a crack in the block, bottom of the water jacket, back, driver side? perhaps two inches long. There was rust staining, and after scrubbing it with a wire brush a bit, I see a shiny line.

.
rear main clearance.jpg

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jun 06, 2020 2:58 pm

A few more pictures....
front main.jpg
center main.jpg
rear main.jpg
rear main journal.jpg
rod big end.jpg
I measured the thrust wear on the rear main journal of the crank, it's about 0.010" wider at the worn area, than at the ridge. And it's pretty close to the nominal 3-5/32" size, most of the thrust wear is on the babbit on the block and cap. A bit more wear on the back than the front, it appears.

Also I measured bores with the pistons out, they're mostly 3.755 at the bottom, and have 0.005 to 0.012 taper, which includes the out of round. The out of round is mostly 0.005, with the axis sort of in line with the intake valves being larger.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John Codman » Sat Jun 06, 2020 5:32 pm

There were more then 15,000,000 cylinder heads built for Model Ts. I would find one that isn't cracked. I agree that JB Weld will work, but if I were buying any car that had a cracked head, number one on my priority list would be finding a non-cracked head.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Mike Thomas » Sat Jun 06, 2020 10:40 pm

Rather than look for a replacement head, I would put a high compression head on it. Especially if you are going to do all that other work. One of the cheapest things you can do for a T to take advantage of gas we have now as compared to when the T was built.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:22 pm

Anyways...as usual, things get carried away. But I'm making progress.

.
progress01.jpg


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Tue Jun 16, 2020 9:40 pm

You know, it's a lot of work to get down to the ring gear, but not THAT much work! ;)
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by RajoRacer » Tue Jun 16, 2020 10:58 pm

Jim stated he thought the BLOCK had a crack - not the head !

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jun 16, 2020 11:26 pm

The head had a big long wide crack. I got a replacement head. The block has a shorter, narrow crack that wasn't leaking, but I ground and JB Welded it anyways. It has another crack between the head bolt hole and the oblong water passage in the middle of the deck surface, too. I guess that one will get a bunch of aviation Permatex on the threads.

I decided to go ahead and make everything pretty, because it costs a lot less and takes less time than making it mechanically perfect. I'm just fixing the mechanicals enough to get maybe 5000 more miles (is that ten years?) out of it. I do plan to fix the play in the steering, shackles, etc. I do have a bit of experience with other not quite so old cars, getting them going again, so I have a pretty good idea of what really needs to be done now, and what can be put off for a while. Fortunately there are lots of old threads on this forum about almost every topic that I need to know about.

The thing about fixing the ring gear, is that you see where the missing magnet plate was, and where the plates that were still there were kissing half of the coil cores...then things in the engine get interesting.

Don't worry, I'll get it back on the road in a week or two, and see how it does.

.
progress02.jpg

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jun 20, 2020 12:42 pm

It's getting there...I'm still waiting on a few parts, before I can get the suspension back together. But I might have the engine in and the body back on the frame later today.

.
progress05.jpg


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Sat Jun 20, 2020 6:34 pm

You really don't want to put that crank in that block as is, and I know you know that.

I just finished something I'll never do again: I straightened a crankshaft (.010 back to .0005) which took nearly a week of tweeking and waiting for a day, etc. Then ascertained that the center main was beaten down a good .006". The caps didn't look as bad as yours but the babbit was thin, there were no shims in center and front, and had excess endshake at the mag.

New caps all around...had to send 1 rear main back because it was bored off center (?). After scraping and Timesavering (look it up, as I'm guessing this product is news to you...it works fabulously), I dropped the crank .006" to match the center main and all is good. The cam got an O/S timing gear.

I will never do that again, but it was something to do in a very cold shop through some of winter, finishing off measurements and buttoning up when temps hit high 60's.

NEVER AGAIN!

But short of a rebuild, that's what I see in your future.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jun 20, 2020 7:44 pm

The problem is that grinding the crank will cost several thousand dollars and take 6 months to a year. Not for the grinding, but for all the other stuff that might as well get done, while I'm doing that. Sorry, I'm not going there with this car, right now. I got a replacement #3 cap to fit pretty well. The bearing clearances are now about half what they were when I took it apart (#3 is now much less than half what it was). End play is right around .005, vs .040 before. Mag gap looks reasonable now, too. The crank spins freely, but not sloppily. The new undersize 4th bearing slid right into place, bolts go in with no side load. I think it's going to last well enough for my needs. I don't know what the future holds for this car, but I'm not going to worry too much about it. I do know that I should be able to get some driving pleasure from it, without having to worry too much about it coming apart.

Straightening the crank sounds like a fun time! This is a whole different world of tinkering that what I'm used to doing :)


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Sat Jun 20, 2020 9:20 pm

You're the one who keeps talking about grinding. I simply told you that you can rebed what you have, and put 3 good new caps on and be done with it.

You will be doing yourself a great disservice if you do not figure out how much the center main has sunk or raised depending on your point of view. When the 4th main wears, the droop of the transmission puts terrible pressure on the center main and can wear it inordinantly. That was the problem I had and it is very common. That's why I had to drop/raise front and rear by .006" to get everything all in alignment. Lots of scraping.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John Codman » Sun Jun 21, 2020 1:22 pm

A little off topic, but '26 and '27 gas tanks are made of unobtainium. In your travels, if you should run across a decent tank for a reasonable price, I would buy it as a spare. I hope that you never have to use it, but I believe that the gas tank was the first part placed on the assembly line, and the car was built around it. They are not fun to replace. Ask me how I know...

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun Jun 21, 2020 1:25 pm

I'll keep that in mind. I had the body off the chassis when I took mine out, and yes, it does take some work to get the windshield side garnish and the dashboard out, to get the tank loose. But I wanted to replace the cowl lacing, so I had to remove it. I suppose the pedals, steering, etc all contribute to the difficulty of the job, but I didn't have to deal with those, at least.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun Jun 21, 2020 11:07 pm

A little more progress today. I'm hoping the mail tomorrow has two boxes of parts, so I can finish putting the car together.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Mon Jun 22, 2020 11:05 pm

I've had this car for a month now. I got it running and driving, a bit. Took it almost all the way apart, and fixed a lot of things, cleaned and painted a lot of things. It's getting close now, just need to install fenders, front suspension, and a few other things. Waiting again for a few parts to show up in the mail, hopefully tomorrow.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Tue Jun 23, 2020 10:11 am

Looking good Jim
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 26, 2020 3:22 pm

Thanks!

If you look at the last picture, you'll see something wrong that had me going for an hour or so....but I fixed it, and it started right up.

Anyways, I got the fenders on and the wheels back under it etc. Went for a drive this morning up and down the road I live on, it is peppier, quieter, and steers better. I checked some stuff, tightened the rear hub nuts again, and went out on a longer drive, to the gas station 5 miles away, and then a friend's house.

It mostly works. The windshield glass seems to be rattling in the frame, it makes a noise that sounds ominous, but quiets down when I press on the top of the glass, so I guess the noise is not in the engine. I plan to get some safety glass cut for it, and put in new setting tape, which should fix that problem.

It's over 100 degrees out, and the radiator was spewing some drops (the cap doesn't seal very well), and it overflowed when I stopped for gas. It did cool of pretty quickly. I guess it's working as it should, I expect I had the radiator a bit too full, I don't know what it's happy level is yet.

It also had a few instances of running a bit off, and popped a couple times. I still have to play with the mixture setting and figure out where it wants to be when...generally 1 turn open is working pretty well. The coils are all original, and I expect the condensers might be getting flaky, etc. I need to get some that have been rebuilt and tuned. The magneto seems to be working, although I haven't checked the voltage. I also need to play with the idle speed setting, it's a bit fast right now. And go through the band adjustment again. And tighten those rear hubs again.

But yeah, it was fun going for a drive. It's a whole new world.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Fri Jun 26, 2020 3:41 pm

Now THAT is how a Forum Thread should head toward conclusion: with a report on how things went!

That's just outstanding and impressive for the short time (in days) that it went from complete to stripped down to back on the road. Congratulations!

You will be most pleased with the result when you get the coils serviced and operating to their best. And yes, it is a whole new world...welcome to it. I used to be a fan of IMSA, and a dedicated Austin-Healey go-fast guy. Am having more fun going slow than I ever did going fast (though I still have the Healey!)
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 26, 2020 3:55 pm

Thanks!

Now that it's running again, I have to decide what to spend money and time on next. The coils and a new exhaust system are about the last mechanical things I need to deal with. I'd like to work on the interior and top, but still deciding what path to take. I think I might just try to do the headliner and side panels myself, and see how it works. The seat is OK for now, although it's a funky 20? year old velour. If I do the rest in something that doesn't cost much, and sort of matches, then the car will have the overall "almost restored well" look I'd be comfortable with. I also need to do the top covering, and either replace all the top wood, or just make new bows, and hope the rest will hold tacks well enough that the top won't fly off. I got a chunk of poplar to make bows from, since I live a ways away from a good wood store that would have ash.

Also, the ammeter showed between 10 and 20 amps charging most of the time. I read up on the third brush, and took the band off, and looked. The nut was loose, and the brush was all the way over towards the engine. I moved it back to where it looks like it had been for a long time (the insulator leaves evidence), and will start it up and see how it does. I don't have the light wiring in right now, so I can't check it out completely.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Fri Jun 26, 2020 4:04 pm

Yeah, you need to knock that amp output down to around 4-5A to save the generator and battery. We drive much faster and further than what that kind of output was designed for. It will kick the pants out of a battery at 20MPH for 30 minutes, but fry itself and the battery eventually at 30MPH for 3 hours. It doesn't take much to boost back up after starting and any net draw with lights on will take hours and hours to show up as a pooped battery at 5A charge rate.

Look up http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/17 ... 1304466007 and take Ron Patterson's advice printed there. Usually just changing the 3rd brush does the trick, but if it doesn't, then someone mis-set the "Neutral" point in the generator and you'll have to do a little more work. If you end up at that point, just CRACK loose the 4 screws on the generator or the entire brush block assembly will end up dangling and you'll be dismantiling it to put everything back correctly.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John kuehn » Fri Jun 26, 2020 6:25 pm

Your car is looking good. Good to see you’ve got it going. Yes setting the carb is not exact for all T’s. Somewhere around one turn or so is about as good as you can say it! Mine are no more than 1 1/4 turn most of the time. Each T is different.
Don’t know if you’ve gone through the coil box but if you haven’t they can be a T part that can fool you if they “look” good. I finally bought a set of rebuilt coils for my 19 Runabout and it did help but it was the coil box I finally bought a kit for and took care of the occasional sputter. The original bolts in the box have a copper coat or plateing that eventually corrodes over time. The continuity in a coil box has to be really good for T electrical performance in my mind. I found that out in my 19. A coil box repair kit is fairly inexpensive and it does improve things. Sure can’t hurt.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 26, 2020 7:06 pm

Thanks. The coil box contacts are in good condition, I doubt they're causing problems, but I'll keep it in mind when I get coils redone, if it still has issues.

Adjusting the generator is fun....I guess it works best to have it on a bench with the right test equipment.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Fri Jun 26, 2020 8:01 pm

Once you read Ron's response to your type of problem, I think you might rethink that line of reasoning (at least with respect to adjustment). If you're just interested in seeing what's what, might as well rebuild it while it's out. It's either working or it ain't and to figure that out, it doesn't need to be on the bench.

One hint: many T ammeters, and your version of ammeter is notorious for being inaccurate, particularly for low readings. When you get around to testing things, turn the lights on without running the car. There will be a strong discharge. You can then compare that to the running discharge with lights on and the delta is of course your charge rate. Getting it properly/safely low enough may make the charge rate on the ammeter so far down in the mud that all or much sensitivity is masked by inaccuracies. Low charging rates can appear from slightly discharge to slightly charge, or vibrating across ZERO and give an entirely false understanding of what you really have when it's set for low output.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jun 26, 2020 9:11 pm

Working on the generator in the car is a pain, is all I meant. I know it has to be adjusted to work in the car, but it seems to me that setting up the timing of the main brush holder might be easier on the bench, if you have proper equipment to do it. Those four little screws are not very accessible with a Vaporizer, and having an assistant that will help with this stuff is challenging.

I've read that these cheap ammeters are not very accurate. I did go for another drive after monkeying with it some more, and it's showing about 5 amp charge when driving now, so it is probably going to be ok for a while. I also know that the setting won't ever be perfect, and what it needs to be set at depends a lot on the use of the car. I just don't want to cook the battery, and it looked like it was headed that way before I tinkered with it. Like so many other things, I have to get in there and see how it works, play with it, and then go back later a few more times to get it closer after I finally understand how it all works.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by MWalker » Fri Jun 26, 2020 9:38 pm

Squirrel -- I am impressed with your progress. From part of a car just a few days ago to a running, driving car in only a few days. Looking good!


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Scott_Conger » Fri Jun 26, 2020 9:43 pm

Jim

you're a clever enough guy...take a look through the forums and you'll find several generator test setups. You need a battery, accurate ammeter and an ability to spin the generator.

If you've read how to null the generator on the bench, be aware that in theory and 90+% of the time, you can do it with just a battery on the bench. The other 5-10% or so, you may end up with no output despite the thing "motoring" correctly and the null apparently done correctly. This is where setting it up as a functioning generator is so useful.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Duey_C » Fri Jun 26, 2020 11:26 pm

Just ribbin' ya Jim: Imagine that, a race mechanic working on a model T. ;)
A wrench gets a model T ready to go in one page on the forum.
And may still like the Vaporizer carb! :)
Oh yeah, fresh coils will knock your socks off. Vroom!
Such a fun thread to read in my madness! OT treasures I'm fiddling with. No racing, 4 cylinder grunting here Jim.
Thank you!
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by cve92 » Sat Jun 27, 2020 2:55 am

Jim. Not to change your post, I have a 27 coupe and need to replace the driver door window channel. If you ever do something like this, I would like to see how you do it. I'm not sure how to get the frame out to get to the channel. Your car looks good, and your way ahead of me in knowledge on working on it.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jun 27, 2020 9:37 am

Hi, I haven't got the door glass in or working yet, the glass and lower channels are missing. I do have the regulators, although one is missing the small gear. I did remove the garnish moldings at the top of the door inside, they have three screws holding the top, then they slide up (using a hammer and 2x4 gently to tap the front and back up, alternating side to side). I need to buy new felt(?) channels for the front and rear vertical runs, a new rubber channel for the top, and metal channels and setting tape for the bottoms. I did find dimensions for the glass on the internets, and need to make a Masonite template, to see if it will work properly, then get glass cut to match the template.

So, one of these days I should be able to help :)

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:13 am

I started playing with trim....went to local fabric store, bought 8 yds of this neat stripe cloth, which colors match the existing 1980s(?) velour on the seat. I started on the hard to see pieces, so my goof ups won't be so noticeable.



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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Mopar_man » Mon Jun 29, 2020 5:30 pm

Congratulations!! What a job you did. Almost like you worked at NASCAR! That was fast. I've got so much more to go.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jun 30, 2020 7:45 pm

Thanks! being retired, but young enough to still have some energy, I can get a lot done when I feel like it.

Trim progress....it takes a while, because I don't really know what I'm doing.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sat Jul 04, 2020 10:08 pm

I got the interior almost finished. I have to do door glass still, and a few other touches. I also put a roof on it, which also needs a couple finishing touches (welt and gutter).

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Sun Jul 05, 2020 10:14 pm

My car was missing the driver side garnish/door pull. They sell new ones, but only in pairs, and I didn't really feel like spending the bucks for twice what I needed. And no reply to my wanted ad, I guess used ones are hard to find also.

So I made one. It's not perfect, but it's pretty close.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by jab35 » Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:14 pm

That's really nice work on the molding, thanks for posting all your progress reports. jb

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Flatee » Tue Jul 07, 2020 12:16 am

Great thread.

I wish all engines were as easy to manhandle as a T. I spent the evening fighting a 1956 322 nailhead Buick engine away from its longtime companion Dynaflow transmission, onto the engine stand, and tearing down the top end. The photo of your T engine being dismantled on the floor made me chuckle with jealously. Keep up the good work.
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jul 07, 2020 2:02 am

Thanks! I figured out the trick of putting some 7/16" bolts into the head bolt holes all by myself...then later, saw some pics of other folks using the same trick (without explanation). Fortunately I'm still agile enough at 59 yrs young, to handle this stuff!

Now I'm playing with horns. I got a couple of non-T horns with the car, and I've spent an hour or so taking them partly apart, and investigating what they are. Looks like a Klaxon 8C, and a Delco K-26(?). I think I'll see if I can get the Klaxon cleaned up and on the car. I tested it with power, it made noise (after I checked that the motor would spin by hand).

Sorry no pictures.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Tue Jul 07, 2020 8:48 pm

I took apart and cleaned up and painted the Klaxon horn. And made a bracket to mount it on the car, because I could.

It works.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xvn4sASkJY


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by BobD » Tue Jul 07, 2020 8:58 pm

Looks and sounds good. I'm running a Klaxon 8C on my ’26 runabout as well.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Mopar_man » Tue Jul 07, 2020 9:49 pm

You are doing a great job. Fast too. I'm still trying to get it together. :lol: :lol:


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Dallas Landers » Tue Jul 07, 2020 9:53 pm

Real fast. ! Looks great also.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Duey_C » Tue Jul 07, 2020 11:49 pm

Jim, would you show us a pic or two of your interior? Even tho not correct per say, I for one would like to see.
Very interesting thread. :)
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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Wed Jul 08, 2020 12:38 am

Sure. I didn't want to spend the time/money to get the right interior...and since the paint is wrong, etc, it doesn't really matter too much. Also, I wanted to see if I could do the trim job myself, and have it come out OK.

I still need to finish some things...I need to get some door glass cut, it was missing. Today I got all the parts to install it, and tested my template (it fits!) but still looking for a place that will cut it some time soon.

Here's one shot of the inside, doesn't show everything.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2020 12:41 pm

I decided to take a trip into town today, it's about 10 miles or so, as we live out on a country road. I made it, no issues with the car at all. But my driving is still developing...I did have one "late" stop at a traffic light. I need to get more used to them, and also practice my panic stopping technique.

PIcture at the local park.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by John kuehn » Fri Jul 10, 2020 1:32 pm

Hey Jim! You have to remember when driving a stock T that you drive as if you don’t have real brakes because you really don’t! Just kidding but that’s the way I drive mine and it does work. Its definitely is a re-learning experience when you’ve used to driving modern cars with positive brake action. Starting to slow down a good ways before you really have to stop is what you learn to do after a few of those learning expeirences!
And the 27 looks sharp even without the missing rear hubcap! :D

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:18 pm

Thanks!

I've been driving older cars with manual drum brakes all my life, so I'm accustomed to staying back and looking ahead. But as you know the T is a whole different thing, and I'm still getting used to it. I'll get there eventually, hopefully without running into anyone.

The rear hub caps are off until I'm satisfied the axle hub nuts are fully tightened. Still more driving to do, to let them settle in and get rechecked.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:20 pm

I"ve also been reading some of the old "how to drive" threads on the forum, very helpful.


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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by BLB27 » Thu Aug 06, 2020 11:00 pm

Jim, I am so glad I found your information. I have a 1927 coupe that is "just like yours". I bought it from a farmer in North Dakota in 1954 when I was in high school. It hasn't been run for 60 years. Now, my son and grandsons (and me) are going to work on it. We do not have your experience etc.,but your information and photos will be of great help!! One of the first things we are going to do is remove the body from the frame. Please walk me thru how you did it. I hope you will also be willing to respond to other questions I am sure we will have as we undertake our work.

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Re: Got a 27 Coupe

Post by Squirrel » Fri Aug 07, 2020 12:18 am

I pulled the engine before I decided to remove and paint the frame, etc. So I had already unbolted the body from the frame, and lifted it up a bit and rested it on some 4x4s above the frame rails. Then I set up some steel sawhorses on either side of the car, and put a steel tube between the body and frame, and raised the body up. I also put another sawhorse at the back of the body, to hold it up. When I put it back together, I put the frame in from the front, so I had to move the supports around. It was a couple months ago, and I forget the whole sequence...

If I were doing it again, I'd probably use that scaffold I have, to support one end of the body.

I did all this by myself, it would probably be easier with a few more people.

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